Acoustic Enters Strategic Partnership with Global Payment Consultancy PayTech

Acoustic Group’s mission is to help companies develop and implement customer centric digital transformation and innovation strategies. To do that effectively, we collaborate with a number of partners, such as technology providers, research companies etc. Most of these collaborations are on a project by project basis, in order to maintain our independence. We do not, and will not, sell technology/hardware/software off the shelf. If you work with Acoustic, you will never get… Read More

Continuous Transformation

Written and published for Mediamixx 2017’s printed magazine. If you work in traditional media, you’ve had a tough 20 years, with constant changes and the looming industry death hanging over your head. And if you work in digital media, you’ve had a pretty spectacular run the past 20 years – not without ups and downs, of course, but the changes we’ve seen since Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web has been… Read More

“Why 2019 Won’t be Like 2019”

In 1984, Ridley Scott directed the much-praised “1984” ad for Apple, referencing George Orwell’s famous 1948 novel by the same name. The payoff line in the ad goes: “On January 24th, Apple Computer will introduce Macintosh. And you’ll see why 1984 won’t be like ‘1984.’” A truly ground-breaking commercial that helped launch a computer that changed the paradigm of personal computing in many ways. Two years earlier, in 1982, Mr. Scott directed… Read More

Acoustic on Tour

Are you looking to create a more innovative spirit in your company? Do you want to know how Digital Transformation will affect your business in the future? Would you like to inspire your team to really understand your customers? Are you trying to figure out how your team can best be utilised to come up with new ideas? Acoustic is offering a practical, yet inspirational session for your business. We will come to… Read More

How to Win, Keep or Lose Customers

In the past couple of weeks, there’s been some world famous PR disasters. Pepsi’s embarrassing appropriation of counterculture, multi-ethnicity and grassroots demonstrations was one. United Airline’s violent enforcement of ridiculous procedures was another. And finally, last week an American Airlines’ flight attendant yelled at a crying mother and hit her with her stroller, narrowly missing the baby in her arms. These are of course major fails, that senior management are working around… Read More

Banks: “I’m the King of the World!” (…moments later, …hits iceberg).

Banks. Can’t live with them. Can’t blow them up (apparently). Few companies are so disliked as the major banks, historically and currently. Now there is a reason for that. And it’s not all the banks fault. The service they offer can have huge impact on people’s lives, and people will get really disappointed when they don’t get what they want. Banks also have to follow strict regulations on how they conduct their… Read More

The 6 Pillars of Innovation

Innovation is quickly becoming the most overused word in the English language, a trend that has not escaped the satirical masterminds over at The Onion, who claimed that the word “innovate” was used 8.2 timers per second at SxSW 2017. But as much as we can dismiss the use of buzzwords, it is a fact that with the huge changes happening in the business world today, being innovative is key to finding the right… Read More

The Problem With Digital Transformation

Digital Transformation is on everyone’s lips these days, from cool new start-ups, to the mastodons of the corporate world.  The business models of yesterday are changing, and disruption is happening in all industries, across all markets. The disruption is driven by new competitors, new ideas, new technology, new mind-sets and new cultural shifts that are making it more and more challenging for companies to stay connected with their customers and to just keep the… Read More

“When You Change Yourself, You Change the World”*

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about “Why I Left Advertising”, which gained quite a lot of attention globally through Campaign Asia – perhaps specifically because I called out some problems with advertising, and what i believe is a more efficient way to achieve your goals. It can be summed up in one sentence; “Less talk, more action.” Instead of doing “advertising“, make sure your business model and service model… Read More

Your Life as a Technologist

Do you see yourself as a technologist? Probably not, unless you work in software development, digital production, UX, UI, hardware development or other true tech roles. But being a technologist should be for more than just coders and IT specialists. In some small way, we all have to be technologists. We live in an age of technological wonders. Every days, it seems, a new product or service is launched that has the potential to… Read More

Why I Left Advertising

A couple of days ago, my friend Matt Eastwood, who is the Global Chief Creative Officer at J Walter Thompson (you can’t get much higher than that in creative roles in advertising), was interviewed by Indian website Live Mint. In the interview, he proclaimed that “it is the best time to be working in advertising”, because “now, you can invent a new product” [instead of just doing “advertising”]. So basically, he is… Read More

Shame is Transforming TV as we Know It

You may not have heard of “Skam” (Norwegian for “Shame”) yet, but trust me, you will hear a lot about in the future. Or at least, your kids will. Shame is a drama TV series, that is transforming the way people consume content. Showing that even traditional TV station can create content that resonates, and is delivered in a new and engaging format. Let me explain how. In 2015, NRK (Norwegian state owned broadcaster)… Read More

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised (It’s already happening on Facebook Live)

You may have noticed that your friends on Facebook, and especially media outlets have started going live on Facebook (Instagram recently launched a similar feature). It’s becoming the new way of covering live events – big and small. Linear TV is, as we all know, dying a slow and rather painful death. Entertaining or informative content, is not. We have completely changed the way we consume media. We still watch “TV”, but… Read More

The Road to Digital Transformation. Acoustic Sessions #1.17. 28 February 2017

Acoustic Sessions is our new quarterly event programme on Innovation, Digital Transformation, Strategy and Creativity. We will vary the format, but keep consistent focus on sessions that are inspirational and practical at the same time. Our first session will be on February 28, at Collision 8, in High Street Centre (Where Acoustic holds office). The breakfast seminar is free, with priority given to senior management. Register here Digital Transformation is Cultural Transformation Digital Transformation is… Read More

Acoustic moves to Collision 8 at High Street Centre

Acoustic has moved into the Collision 8 co-working space in High Street Centre, opposite the Parliament. In addition to being surrounded by other great companies, the space gives us great meeting room facilities, including ample workshop facilities. Feel free to send us an email at info@acoustic.agency, if you’d like to come for a meeting. Our new visiting address is: Acoustic Group Pte. Ltd. 1 North Bridge Road Collison 8 #08-08 High Street Centre… Read More

Forget “Futurism”, Embrace “Nowism”

“Futurism”. Think about that word. Sounds pretty cool, no? The idea of predicting the future and telling others what is likely to happen appeals to us. I think anyone would find it quite interesting to call themselves a “futurist”. And the best part is, that by the time “the future” arrives, no one can truly hold you to your predictions. Of course, there is a need for companies, governmental organisations and individuals to… Read More

Join Erik Ingvoldstad for Social Media Storytelling Workshop in Singapore or Hong Kong

Acoustic’s Managing Director, Erik Ingvoldstad, is leading practical 2-day workshops in Social Media Content Strategy in February 2017. The workshop will give you great insight into content and social marketing, and help you improve the quality of your social media marketing efforts. The workshops will be held on 20-21 February in Singapore, and  23-24 February in Hong Kong. As a client or associate of Acoustic, you may be eligible for a special discount. Please send an… Read More

Stairway to (business) Heaven

What is your plan? I don’t mean just your plan for the next three months, or even the year. But what is your plan to ensure the future growth of your business? Are you just going to continue doing what you’ve always done, or are you planning for increased disruption and competition? New players, creative competitors, new ideas, new products, new services, new technology. Everything is changing in every single industry, and… Read More

What’s Your Problem?!

We don’t like to talk about problems. We usually try to escape them altogether, or if we absolutely can’t avoid them, we re-label them, so they don’t sound so scary. We call them challenges or barriers. Never problems. But here’s the thing; Problems are important. Problems are good. Problems are catalysts for change. When humans face problems, we rise to the occasion, we thrive, we collaborate, and we solve those problems. Problems… Read More

Future is Now. Acoustic 2017 and beyond.

At Acoustic, we’ve always encouraged companies and industries to innovate and change their business model in order to capitalise on the opportunities in a disrupted marketplace. Today, we can announce that we are taking our own medicine. We are changing our business model, and morphing into a strategic consultancy that focuses on Digital Transformation and Innovation. We still believe that marketing has an important place in the success of a brand, but… Read More

Get Our Ebook “Acoustic Thoughts” for free

Over the past 20 years, digital media has played a bigger and bigger role in marketing communication. But for those twenty years, we’ve treated it as something different than everything else. This book takes on some of the misconceptions and the challenges brands are facing in applying fully integrated, digitally centric marketing to connect with their audience. Get ready for the Digital Transformation. The ebook is a collection of some of our blog… Read More

The Fine Art of Customer Experience Creation

Most companies spend a lot of money on branding and marketing activities. Doing advertising and branding in the right channels at the right time is a great thing to do for improving your brand performance and ROI. Many companies even invest large sums in CRM systems to improve customer retention. But many companies seem to miss out on the one thing that makes people buy from you again and again: Customer Experience…. Read More

Private Digital Transformation Workshop for your Business

Are you ready to disrupt your industry, or are you waiting for your current or new competitors to disrupt you? If you are ready to face the challenges head on, we have a great opportunity for you. This private Digital Transformation workshop, led by renowned communication and digital specialist, Managing Director Erik Ingvoldstad from Acoustic, is tailor-made for your business. It is a highly strategic workshop, with practical exercises to reach actual results…. Read More

The Culture of Digital

In most business today, we talk about getting ready for a new future through digital transformation. And in these discussions, a key challenge is to develop the technology of digital. The technology of digital requires tech competency, it requires an organisation that can attract and retain tech talent, it requires leadership, and the hardware and software to implement this technology. These are all important matters, and a foundation for any digital development,… Read More

Social Media Content Strategy & Creation Workshop in Jakarta

Acoustic’s Managing Director, Erik Ingvoldstad, is leading practical 2-day workshops in Social Media Storytelling in October. The workshop will give you great insight into content and social marketing, and help you improve the quality of your social media marketing efforts. The workshops will be held on 6-7 October in Jakarta. As a client or associate of Acoustic, you may be eligible for a special discount. Please send an email to info@acoustic.agency to find… Read More

Digital Transformation is Cultural Transformation

Digital transformation is coming our way, whether we like it or not. More and more industries are being disrupted by new and/or innovative players in the market place. And a lot of existing businesses are scrambling to prepare themselves for whatever will happen in their own industry. The reaction amongst top management varies, of course. Some become paralysed, and do nothing. Others run out and hire Digital Directors. Others again task their… Read More

Generation TL;DR

Ok, I will make this one short. There was a time, not so many years ago, that people made informed decisions based on several credible sources. They would read books, magazines, newspapers, and way the pros and cons of their decision. Those days are long gone. Today, people certainly do research, and check multiple sources., But the majority only reads headlines (and conclusions if we’re lucky), before making a decision; whether it’s… Read More

No One Cares About Your Brand!

Ok, those are some pretty harsh words, I know, but hear me out. There is a widespread misunderstanding amongst many marketers, as they seem to believe that people walk around thinking about brands (and their brand specifically). That “top of mind” means that human beings actually go around thinking about specific product categories and brands even when they are not shopping for that category. For almost every brand on the planet, that’s… Read More

Join Erik Ingvoldstad for Social Media Storytelling Workshop in Singapore, HK, KL and Manila

Acoustic’s Managing Director, Erik Ingvoldstad, is leading practical 2-day workshops in Social Media Storytelling in April and May. The workshop will give you great insight into content and social marketing, and help you improve the quality of your social media marketing efforts. The workshops will be held on 18-19 April in Singapore, 21-22 April in Hong Kong, 19-20 May in Kuala Lumpur and 26-27 May in Manila. As a client or associate… Read More

Disruption is Dead. Long live Disruption!

For decades, the advertising industry has talked about disruption as a way of getting the attention of the consumer. Disruption, in the sense of breaking into people’s lives and frame of mind, almost rocking them out of their day, delivering a punchy message, and expecting that message to be understood and liked – because it was “disruptive”, is now dead. People don’t want to be disrupted, and they are more likely to… Read More

 “The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers” 

Relax, no one is going to off anyone. When William Shakespeare wrote this line in Henry VI, back in 1591, he was merely stating that the best way to create chaos and disorder was to get rid of the lawyers (who would uphold law and order in society). But in 2016, in marketing, lawyers have become a big obstacle for connecting with audiences. Or, rather, the concern for what the lawyers will… Read More

O captain, my captain! An open letter to the 5 Advertising Chiefs.

Dear Sir Martin, John, Maurice, Michael, and Ishii-san I don’t know any of you personally, and you certainly don’t know me. But as our industry’s leading captains, I am calling on you to lead. Because something in ad land has to change, and you have to take the responsibility to do something. Now, there are a lot of things we could talk about; how we’ve not really managed to get integration working because… Read More

The Benefit of Having Balls

Some people have them, others don’t. And I’m not talking about men vs. women here. We are talking the metaphorical ones. The ones that separate you from a grey blob in the universe. The ones that give you super powers. The ones that bring you a sense of purpose and a place in the record books. Brands can also have balls. Or at least companies can employ people with the desire to… Read More

Transformation is no Monkey Business

The global financial climate is rather nervous these days, and companies are trying to understand what that means to their business. They are racing to find out how they can come out as a winner, rather than being dragged down by a slowing China, plummeting oil prices and increased currency volatility. Businesses may not be panicking, but they are certainly looking at ways to protect themselves from economic slowdown. This week, as… Read More

Are you Useful or Useless?

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about how entertainment is one of the two proven content strategies. In our last post of 2015, I will address the other one, which is simply to be useful. Whether we call it Brand Utilities, Customer Utilities or just tools, offering value to your audience is one of the most effective ways to connect with them. But it is much more than just thinking that… Read More

News: The North Alliance Moves into the US market with Nansen

Acoustic’s parent company, The North Alliance (NOA) acquires the Swedish/American digital development and communication company Nansen. Nansen has over 100 employees in Stockholm, Chicago and New York. – ”During the last two years we have built a group of companies with a solid presence in Scandinavia, and with bridgeheads into the US and Singapore. This acquisition fulfills our goal of taking a leading position in the Nordics and to have a solid… Read More

5 Articles You’ve Missed Out On

Last week, we published “The 5 Most Popular Articles on Acoustic Blog”, which we of course were very proud of. But there are articles that have not garnered as many readers, so we thought we’d re-share them as well. There could be many reasons for their lack of readership; not so catchy titles, not so interesting topic, more introspective or maybe they were just published at the wrong time. But hey, we… Read More

Here We Are Now, Entertain Us!

Content, content, content. It’s all we marketing people seem to talk about these days. But “content” is such a cold word, and it doesn’t say anything about how the human beings consuming the “content” feel afterwards. In fact, content can be used to describe “any information published (and for most parts online, but it certainly doesn’t have to be)”. So using the word content to describe marketing activities is not really helpful…. Read More

The 5 Most Popular Articles on the Acoustic Blog

Our blog is one of our most important outreach tools, and it gives us an opportunity to share what we as an agency and marketing professionals believe in. Luckily, the articles seem to resonate well with the readers as well. We have seen some pretty high readership numbers – and shares on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Some of the articles are hardcore marketing articles, some are more playful, but they all carry… Read More

Why I don’t Believe in Digital Anymore

Through the past 20 years, digital media has played a bigger and bigger role in marketing communication. But for those twenty years, we’ve treated it as something different than everything else. We’ve had digital agencies, digital experts, digital this and digital that. I myself have worked in digital agencies as much as I have worked in traditional agencies. But now, it’s time to make a change. I don’t believe in the myth… Read More

9 Ways to Take Advantage of The New Marketing Paradigm

Anyone who’s been following the Acoustic blog or met with us, will have heard how marketing is changing almost by the day, how digital transformation (and disruption) is coming your way, and how convergence is redefining the marketing communications industry (hint: it’s not just about advertising). But we do understand that some of these processes and service offerings can be complicated to understand and seem like large investments from day one. It… Read More

The Gentle Art of Being Nimble

Process, process, process. It seems to be all agencies talk about these days – including us here at Acoustic. And yes, the bigger picture approach of (digital) transformation, business development and creating connections through ground-breaking communications is important. But that doesn’t mean it’s the right answer for every problem. It could be the opposite. Sometimes we all just need to get things done. The beauty of a boutique agency is that it allows… Read More

From Slowdown to Fast-track

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has warned that Singapore may face economic slowdown in the coming years, or even worse, a downturn. And there are a few things, worse than the haze, looming over the skies of Singapore. According to The Business Times, Mr. Lee points to globalisation and advances in technology as two of the challenges the island state is facing, where old jobs are disappearing and it’s taking time to… Read More

The Untitled TV Title Piece

I like branding exercises where you get to demonstrate the success rate of brand names. My favourite game is to project success rates of TV shows based on their title in relevance to their (perceived) quality. What does this have to do with branding, you ask? Everything. First and foremost, a TV franchise is a brand in itself. Just look at “The Simpsons”, “Friends” and “Sex and the City”, three successful shows… Read More

The 5 New Competitors to Watch Out For

Back in the day, knowing who your competitors were, was easy. If you sold paint, your competitors were other companies who sold paint. If you sold accounting services, other accountants would be your competitors. But the world isn’t that simple anymore. Sure, your main competitor will still be from your core industry, but there will be a whole host of others. As businesses and industries are shook up by financial turmoil, by… Read More

Marketing for Startups

A startup can be a magical place. The energy, the enthusiasm, the creativity and the sense of changing the world makes it a very exciting place to be. But as anyone who’s ever worked at a startup knows, it can be bloody hard work. Customers aren’t queueing up outside your business to buy your product or service. Investors aren’t throwing money at you and governmental organisations aren’t waiting for you to save… Read More

To Complain or not to Complain. That’s the Question.

Most issues are not black and white. There are at least two sides to each story. So on the topic of Singaporeans and their fondness for complaining, we are covering both sides. First, Erik Ingvoldstad makes the argument that the complaints are a good thing, whilst Hoong Wei Ling has a different view. Please note that no punches were thrown during this discussion. Erik Ingvoldstad: I don’t think I’m going to surprise… Read More

My Love-Hate Relationship with Creative Trends

Last week, I attended a seminar at Getty Images by trends expert Rebecca Swift discussing the biggest visual trends today. It is good to see that commercial photographers are creating work based on current technology trends and cultural shifts. For instance, how we are starting to see more of the point-of-view compositions which have been greatly influenced by the popularity of GoPro cameras and remote-controlled drones, and as a big step towards… Read More

Did Anyone Order a Startup?

The traditional client-agency/consultancy relationship, which has been in place since the dawn of the marketing industry, has many benefits. It makes for a manageable and controlled relationship, where the client provides a brief, and the agency executes. It works well for campaign based activities as well as predetermined and/or finite projects. But what if your challenge is to go through a Digital Transformation? Or you want to inject new technology into your… Read More

How to Fix Customer Service

Every time I experience (or read about) a bad customer service experience, I am baffled. Not because I and other customers should get whatever they want, but because businesses don’t seem to understand the consequences of bad customer experiences. They don’t seem to grasp that whatever happens at the customer service centre or on the customer service hotline directly translates into good or bad marketing. It translates into positive or negative word… Read More