Jason Wincuinas
Sep 23, 2014

More than a 'Gee-whiz' factor: Technology generates actions

SPIKES ASIA - Three representatives from Proximity showed how combining existing technologies into something new can, in their words, “make shit happen”—or, in more industry-centered language, drive results.

More than a 'Gee-whiz' factor: Technology generates actions

Please see all of our Spikes Asia 2014 coverage here

Melanie Clancy, creative director; Laurent Thevenet, technology director; and Maik Lutze, executive creative director, presented their TechTalk session this afternoon at Spikes Asia 2014.

QR, codes, gyroscopes and accelerometers in phones may not seem like breakthrough technologies anymore but putting them together into an app that forced people to spend more time with each other (and less time staring at their phones) proved a groundbreaking move for KFC. The idea behind the Phone Stack from BBDO Malaysia was to reward people with coupons or freebies for time they spent disconnected from the digital world and presumably reconnected with each other.

BBDO’s app used QR codes to link phones, activating gyroscopes and accelerometers as customers stacked them together. Since it could sense when people broke or moved the stack, the longer the phones sat untouched, the more rewards customers earned. “It's just a QR code; it's really simple,” said Clancy, but it gets to the core of how technologies can be combined to get results.

Lutze emphasized the goal of using tech is more than just building something novel. The results part that gets people involved and prompts real action from consumers is about creating connections on a personal level, giving people new ways to connect, offering utility, changing behavior and even devising different means to experience the world. None of this about storytelling in the traditional sense but it is all about involving people in a story.

Another example the trio gave was the world underwater campaign. The effort merged Google Street View with Web GL, a JavaScript graphics software, to show what any location in the world might look like after floods from global-warming hit the area. People have shared millions of pictures across social media, of both well-known and out-of-the-way places, generating what the agency calculates as over $36 million dollars worth of earned media. But more to the point, more than a million people have shared ways to reduce their carbon footprint. And that’s a behavior change from which we might all reap rewards. That’s how tech makes shit happen.

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