Friday, July 31, 2015

RIP, Abdul Kalam. Thanks for lifting us up.

APJ Abdul Kalam
(15 October 1931 – 27 July 2015)

On Monday 27 July, 2015, our world became a little lighter and poorer. A huge soul left us that day. An inspiration to generations, successful political leader, and spiritually enlightened human.

A rare being, he was the last of the greats. Right up there in the league of modern legends: Nelson Mandela, Steve Jobs, Maya Angelou - APJ Abdul Kalam was a game changer!

A scientist by profession, Abdul Kalam was part of India's Space Research Mission for years, And then, he went on to become President of India. Above all, he was a lover of culture and arts. A teacher / educator, he loved children and enjoyed sharing his life experiences to enrich them.

What set this man apart was the quality of his thinking. A global citizen by heart, he made secularity and unity his top priority and placed strong emphasis on technology and education.

Rest in peace, Abdul Kalam. 
Much R-E-S-P-E-C-T ~ Thank you for the inspiration.

A great orator, a sharp wit, a true intellectual, APJ always had a twinkle in his eye and the child in him was very alive. Just as much for his sense of duty, he was also known for his sense of humour. Here are a few of his often-quoted, much loved and widely enjoyed utterances:

To end in Hindi: Shri Abdul Kalam. Aapko hazaar salaam.
A prolific author and multiple award winner, his last book: Transcendence released in July.

Read more about the book on Amazon here

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

It's nice to be important. But... it's important to be nice.

MAKING MAN...KIND - An excellent film preview video by Julia Rose.

MMK is a project in collaboration with Gregg Braden, Bruce Lipton and Mike Dooley.

More than a video, it's a movement. See the summary below. Watch. Enjoy. Share.

Be good to others. Be human. Be man...kind.

A tree is known by its fruit; a man by his deeds.

An explorative journey of the values & virtues of kindness. Engaging youthful change-makers, like you, to use technology and social media to spread the spirit of global kindness.

This cinematic voyage is lead by a citizen of humanities youth, who is rediscovering what he came into this world knowing: WE ARE BORN TO BE KIND.

The narration begins with a baby's consciousness speaking to the universe. Now a teenager, this young citizen of humanity seeks out validation of the echoes he recalls from his nearly forgotten conversation with the universe.

Our young explorer will begin by participating in a chain of random acts of skateboard. As the film progresses we will see the full sequence of events that his kindness began....which eventually, link back to him. Meanwhile, as his travels continue, he will perform other simple acts of kindness whose ripples are not seen. The experts and ordinary people he encounters on his voyage will provide the science and stories of man...kind.

With the way technology connects the world today, the millennium generation is armed to be the change. The keys to our current & future happiness are well within our grasp.

The future is NOW. And WE are "the ones". We all belong to a great and diverse family called man...kind, and kindness is the universal language we speak.

We can conquer wars of heart and country with contagious kindness as our weapon of mass creation. After all, we are man...kind.


This is the prelude to an upcoming feature film. For more information visit 

Thanks to Dee @amysticgirl Trivedi for sharing this video.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Power of Emotion in Digital Storytelling

Good content comes from strategy. 
Great stories... from passion.

Great stories, they travel.
They go beyond borders and cultures, ages and languages.
Universal connectors, they talk to everyone and touch us all.

In marketing parlance, they are not always on-brand or contain product truth.
What they do contain is a generous mix of emotion that warms us deep inside.

Talk To Humans. Not Spiders And Bots.

The beauty of a great story is that it connects with us at the most basic level – human.
That’s the power of emotion in storytelling - digital or real life. It is a great leveler, an engagement driver, and community builder. Great storytellers get that. Important for marketers to get it too.

More than keywords, message purity, authenticity, and relevance to audience are key. That's what Google is trying to convey via algorithm changes:- Rather than gaming the system, by impressing our search bots and spiders, it's smarter SEO to connect with real people via quality content.

Your Brand Story. Tell It. Don't Sell it.

Bear in mind, while purchase is entirely a matter of context (product type, price, need, timing, age) - the point is: We may not buy the product, but we buy-in to the brand... If we recall the brand story, we may share or recommend it on social media. and in time, become brand advocates. For marketers, that’s pure gold, for content marketers... a victory in itself.

Great brands are built on stories. Today's best brand stories are told (not sold) digitally around online fires. Some outstanding examples of effective use of emotion in stories across the globe:

China - Malaysia: Malaysian rice company, Bernas wishes Happy Chinese New Year (Gong Xi Fa Cai)

Thailand: Thai mobile network, TrueMove H's commercial on the concept of 'giving without hope of return'

USA: Chipotle Mexican Grill, fast-casual restaurant chain serving Food With Integrity. Eat Responsibly.  

Global via London Olympics 2012: P&G's 'Thank You, Mom' sponsorship campaign - Marketing Gold !!!

India - Pakistan: Coca-Cola Small World Machines - Happiness Beyond Borders - Amazing human tech story!

Google Search: Reunion - Search v/s Separation - Bridging the generation gap between time and tradition.

Time (and bandwidth) permitting, watch all above in full screen. Warning: Please keep a tissue box handy!

Now we know, emotion is the secret sauce in great storytelling. However, if you're a film lover, you may have also noticed how mini films (aka epics on Youtube) have replaced the traditional 30sec/ 60 sec ad spots and commercials of yore. (Just a wee observation, but Thx! for clapping :-)

To sign off, I'll leave you with a warm hug and some top quality material on content marketing:

  • A witty slideshare from Doug Kessler of Velocity Partners. 

Thanks to Michael Brenner for a neat blog on this: The Secret Ingredient to Great Content.
Many Thx also to my Twitter Buddy (and good egg) Pam Moore for sharing his blog post.

  • A surprisingly erudite quote from Joseph Gordon-Levitt (this hunk can thunk !!!)

  • An excellent LinkedIn Thought Leader post - Editor's Pick among Marketing Strategies:

Nicolas Bordas, VP, TBWA Europe & President, BEING Worldwide: What if we got emotional?

  • Bonus: A warm hug from cold, cold Canada. 
Pfizer: Takes more than medication to get better. An oldie but a feel-goody!

Friday, September 20, 2013

New Chipotle ad film does it again with "The Scarecrow"

Food chain, Chipotle Mexican Grill has done it again. Clearly, it's a brand with a conscience, a green heart and a soft spot for the planet. Serious stuff for a burritos maker but then again...

It's new animation ad "The Scarecrow" is a wonderful creation - dark yet gripping, a joy to watch. What's more, they have also created a game app with Moonbot Studios and CAA Marketing.

For more on the ad:

  • Ann Handley of MarketingProfs piece on LinkedIn Thought Leaders:
The Biggest Marketing Lesson from Chipotle’s ‘Scarecrow’ Video 

(and It's Not to 'Start with a Billion Dollars')

Chipotle's first animation ad 'Back to the Start' was a runaway hit. And why wouldn't it be? They got country music legend, Willie Nelson to sing a Coldplay classic! My blog post on it (May 2012).

Saturday, September 14, 2013

What Does The Fox Say? - Funny. LOL :-)

If you haven't seen What Does The Fox Say? by Ylvis
- the newest viral video to hit the interwebs - you're in for a treat. And if you have, you know it's worth a second look.

Ring-a-dinga-ling... that's "have foxy fun" in jungle lingo. Enjoy !!!

(-:   Emoji   Emoji   Emoji   Emoji  :-)

Hilarious lyrics. Made me LOL :-)

Friday, August 30, 2013

Google Science Fair, YouTube Comedy Week, Geek Week

The results of Google Science Fair 2013 are out today. A celebration of creativity and innovation, it's a competition that encourages talented youngsters from around the world to pitch their potentially world-changing ideas to a seasoned panel of judges. Which one will win? --- #GSF2103

Gotta say, YouTube's taken to holding virtual events in a big way, offering TV channel-style entertainment. In May, they hosted YouTube Comedy Week (May 19-25). Earlier this month, (Aug 5-12) was YouTube Geek Week 2013 - celebrating global geekery. Here are some memorable video clips including one that came in from the now-famous Slowmo Guys. Enjoy!

Slowmo Guys, Gav + Dan start a water balloon fight with 1500 people and film it @ 2500fps. They shouldn't have... ;-)

Speaking of geekiness, I think the "Boy and His Atom" film by IBM Research is the bee's knees.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Ashton Kutcher Delivers Rockstar Acceptance Speech #InspirationCentral

'Sbeen a wild week of viral memes on the web what with Ben Affleck named the new Batman, and Miley Cyrus OMG! twerking her behind off at the VMAs. But it began with Ashton Kutcher stealing the show with his Ultimate Choice Award acceptance speech at The Teen Choice Awards 2013.

Fresh from "Jobs the film", Ashton is definitely doing some grown-up talk. Wise words in the speech, some good, sensible advice - not just for teens. Sample this 3-pointer:
  1. Opportunity... looks a lot like work.
  2. The sexiest thing in the world is being smart, thoughtful and generous. (All else is crap!)
  3. Look around. Everything you see and like was made by people just like you. Build your life.
Impressed? 3.5 million hits on YouTube... and counting. Watch the video. Inspire and be inspired.

Welcome to Inspiration Central - Inspire and Be Inspired.

Gratitude! Thanks to Angela Ahrendts for posting this on LinkedIn.