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’

Engagement in Digital Marketing – what it is and resources to harness it

February 8, 2015 at 5:31 PM

When it comes to digital marketing there is so much more to it than just ‘reach and frequency’. Despite the fact that all online advertising is constantly evolving there is one certainty about where it is and where it is headed: Consumer choice.

Users today can pretty much choose to see whatever content they want, whenever and wherever they want. Moreover the interactive nature of the digital medium and it’s data-driven backbone present new challenges to marketers; among them is how to measure the impact of all that “extra substance” that digital marketing can provide on top of reach and frequency.

Engagement in Digital Marketing - what it is and resources to harness it

Engagement in Digital Marketing – what it is and resources to harness it

Digital platforms can uncover special or hidden value buried in customer’s patterns. In advertising that value can be observed as a collection of measurable behaviors and actions that users do to interact with a Brand; the industry uses the word Engagement as a general term to define it. Taking a quote from a Google study“marketers and agency professionals overwhelmingly agreed that engagement was anything that moved people to action”. 

Ad Age and Google partnered for a joint research study that aims to understand best practices to measure Engagement and then determine how valuable it can be for a company or brand. Through several examples the study guides marketers on how to think about engagement and suggests specific actions to start cultivating it. This study is part of the larger “Engagement Project” series that Google is building.

Truly engaged customers probably have much higher lifetime values than those who do not. There’s also nothing like having die-hard fans to stir up sales-generating buzz, just ask Apple. In the long-term it’s probable that Engagement metrics will replace reach & frequency as the favorite way of measuring advertising.

You can download and read the whole pdf below:

Google and Ad Age study on Engagement

Google and Ad Age study on Engagement

If you need tools to further your measurement strategy check out this list of 23 Google Tools & Sites for Research, Insights and Planning.

Two inspiring short films about space explorers

December 8, 2014 at 8:28 PM

Being able to imagine and visualize the future helps us build it. Here are two beautiful videos about a possible time when mankind ventures into the solar system.

Erik Wernquist created his piece based on real places in our solar system, with Carl Sagan’s voice narrating an excerpt from his book Pale Blue Dot which lends the movie an epic and inspirational tone. You can find here an awesome roundup of the locations shown in the movie, including Titan where the gravity and atmospheric composition are such that you could strap on wings and fly around safely like a bird.

Wanderers a short film by Erik Wernquist

 

The second video shows an astronaut flying over Mars in a spaceship. Other Lives is the band behind this music video for the song ‘For 12’. The navigation equipment and HUD look very cool and it gave me a sense that the astronaut was bringing the barren landscape to life through all the data being projected. A nice complement to this video is a time-lapse animation by NASA which shows Mars’ geological evolution from water on the surface to the desert we know today.

Other Lives - For 12 (Official Video)