200 years since The Battle of Waterloo

June 18, 2015 at 4:18 PM

A day can decide the future of nations. June 18 1815 was such a day.

The ferocious battle that was Waterloo stands out as one of the most critical historically, and interesting tactically.

British newspaper The Telegraph released an enthralling series of articles to mark the 200th anniversary of the Battle, here is an excerpt from the introduction:

The morning of June 18 1815 saw 180,000 men, 60,000 horses and 500 pieces of artillery crammed into 2½ sq miles of Belgian countryside. In the nine frantic hours that followed, a quarter-century of central European warfare was brought to a close, leaving more than 44,000 dead, dying and wounded on the field. It was an extraordinary event.

Waterloo may have been “the nearest run thing you saw in your life” – as the Duke of Wellington famously described it – but it was also the turning point in the history of modern Europe, bringing Napoleon Bonaparte’s rampage across the continent to an end and ushering in one of the most peaceful centuries of history.

Louis Dumoulin - Marechal Ney à Waterloo

Louis Dumoulin – Marechal Ney à Waterloo

This two minute video sums up the stakes and main events of the battle:

How the Battle of Waterloo was won

For more detail there is also a fantastic timeline of events in “liveblogging” style that narrates the events of the day as they unfolded. The Battle of Waterloo, as it happened on June 18, 1815

For the historian, here is the order of battle detailing unit, commander, ranks and materiel.

The lessons from Waterloo are useful today, the valour displayed timeless.

William Sadler - Battle of Waterloo

William Sadler – Battle of Waterloo

Lady Butler - Quatre Bras 1815

Lady Butler – Quatre Bras

 ‘Next to a battle lost, the greatest misery is a battle gained.’
— Duke of Wellington Arthur Wellesley

10 Google Tools for Video Insights, Planning and Research

May 11, 2015 at 5:39 PM
Google Planning Tools for Video

Google Planning Tools for Video

Online video is a powerful way to build brands and sell products online. To create great video campaigns you need to start with tools and resources which lead you to discover the best research, insights and data for what you are trying to achieve.

This is a list focused on Google’s planning tools for video, which complements the other more general list on Google planning tools: 23 Google Tools for Planning, Research and Insights


YouTube Ads Leaderboard – Think With Google

A list which month to month has the most active videos on YouTube. The ranking is organized into several categories including by month, brand, type of content and others. It also includes an Agency leaderboard which ranks the top Creative and Media agencies on YouTube.



Trending on YouTube – Google Trends

Did you know YouTube is the second biggest search engine in the world?  With the video section of Google Trends you can see what videos have been trending by market on YouTube in the past 24 hours or in previous days.



Video & Display Benchmarks Tool

Lets you pull up-to-date industry benchmarks such as click-through rate, view-through rate, interaction rate and time, expansion rate and video completions. You can slice the data by country, vertical, ad size and ad format, and can view it as a map, data snapshot, or a trends view.



YouTube Analytics

YouTube Analytics lets you monitor the performance of your channel and videos with up-to-date metrics and reports. There’s a ton of data available in different reports (e.g. Views, Traffic sources, Demographics).



Video Insights – Think With Google

A collection of articles, case studies, infographics and other material related to the art and science of online video campaigns.



Google Display Planner

Find online content that your audience is likely to visit and discover suggestions on new ways to connect with them using all of the targeting options available on the Google Display Network. Simply enter demographics and sites associated with your ideal customers and the tool will suggest thousands of new websites, mobile applications and video channels for your ads.



YouTube Trends Dashboard

A YouTube tool where you can track what’s being viewed and shared around the world. Compare trending videos by age, gender and location so you can discover viewers’ passions, whatever their demographic.



Video Trends – Think With Google

YouTube trends beyond the most popular videos including Featured Highlights, Creator Spotlight, YouTube Insights, Brand Spotlight and more.



Google Developers Tools for YouTube

YouTube provides several APIs and tools that let you integrate the YouTube experience into your website, mobile app, or device. This site is designed to help you to determine which APIs and tools best suit your needs.



YouTube Creator Tools

If you are generating and uploading content to YouTube then you need YouTube’s suite of tools designed to help you create better content, build fan bases, and make more money. There is also a useful Android app available called ‘YouTube Creator Studio’  which includes a lot of the tools showcased.


Powerful VICE movie about living in Japan’s nuclear evacuation zone

April 12, 2015 at 11:04 AM

Japan has had a complicated relationship with nuclear energy ever since it was harnessed at the end of the Second World War. This interesting and harrowing documentary tells the story of two men who decided to go back and live alone in ghost towns inside the evacuation zone.

The Last Farmer in Fukushima's Post-Nuclear Wasteland: VICE INTL (Japan)

VICE: The Last Farmer in Fukushima’s Post-Nuclear Wasteland

From the YouTube description:

“Two years since the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant went into full meltdown, and the resulting 20km evacuation zone was enforced, one farmer still remains behind braving high levels of radiation and loneliness to tend to abandoned animals.

His name is Naoto Matsumura, and he is the last man standing in the ghost town of Tomioka. Another farmer, Kenji Hasegawa’s town of Iidate was also evacuated due to high levels of radiation, he sought refuge in temporary housing. Faced with a post­nuclear world both these men share brutally honest views on the state of their lives, TEPCO, government inaction and some of the hardest situations they have had to face in the midst of overwhelming radioactivity.”

The Last Farmer in Fukushima's Post-Nuclear Wasteland: VICE INTL (Japan)

VICE: The Last Farmer in Fukushima’s Post-Nuclear Wasteland

Incredibly disciplined and serene, the two men in the documentary exemplify Japan’s staunch and disciplined values. There are some incredible anecdotes which make you stop and marvel both at the immense scale of the disaster, as well as it’s depressingly permanent impact on the lives of people and animals.

Japan continues to struggle with atomic energy, a struggle which despite the suffering will help future generations everywhere deal with their own physical and spiritual challenges in the face of nuclear disaster.

The Last Farmer in Fukushima's Post-Nuclear Wasteland: VICE INTL (Japan)

Presenting YouTube to Havas at their ‘Digital Summit’

March 8, 2015 at 11:20 PM

In 2014 I was invited to present at a public event Havas organized for their advertisers in Monterrey, Mexico. The day was organized around showcasing several digital media partners and giving each the opportunity to present something special.

My presentation was an inspirational look at the importance of YouTube as a cultural icon and the opportunities available to brands that decide to seize them.

Check out the video:

Ken Bannister - Google - Havas Digital Summit - 04/14
Presenting YouTube to Havas at their 'Digital Summit'

Presenting YouTube to Havas at their ‘Digital Summit’

Presenting YouTube to Havas at their 'Digital Summit'

Presenting YouTube to Havas at their ‘Digital Summit’

Presenting YouTube to Havas at their 'Digital Summit'

Presenting YouTube to Havas at their ‘Digital Summit’