brandflakes is a conversation

with passionate creatives about branding, design, art, media, writing, strategy, photography, Dylan, cheese, messy desks, Britain, comedy...

Deleted scenes

January 23rd, 2012

I just saw the movie Contraband. I absolutely love fast-paced films about intelligent, illicit activity. Plus, Mark Wahlberg is pretty convincing in criminal protagonist roles, so I have no complaints.


But there always seem to be elements of movies like this one that have gaps. You know what I’m talking about: parts of the storyline that simply seemed to be overlooked; jumps from one thing to another that don’t quite add up. I tend to leave the theater and start to get all riled up as I try to put the pieces together and recognize that a handful of them are missing.


I figure that I can write these ‘gaps’ off in one of two ways: 1) The writers and producers don’t have a clue, which is unlikely. Or 2) A number of scenes were cut out deliberately because the movie would run seven hours if all of the connections were forged, and people wouldn’t stay to the end anyway. (Sure, there’s the third option that I simply missed the connectors, but since I’m always right, that can’t possible be the case and I’m justified in overlooking it. Please sense the facetiousness here, and roll with me for the sake of argument.)

Read the rest of this entry »

“Reality distortion field”

January 17th, 2012

I’m about 250 pages in to Walter Isaacson’s biography of Steve Jobs. (That’s less than halfway for those of you who haven’t laid eyes on the mammoth hardcover that I happen to be foolishly carrying around in my tote bag for those moments when I can get away with reading a morsel.)

I had heard that Jobs could be a bit of a harsh guy, so that came as no surprise. Plus, Isaacson set up quite clearly in the prologue that this wouldn’t be a rosy depiction of the late creative genius. But I have been struck by what many in Jobs’ life refer to as Steve’s “reality distortion field”: his tendency to not only actively bend the truth and what most would consider realistic expectations, but also truly believe in the distortion.

Read the rest of this entry »

Top-notch, tenacious salesperson wanted!

January 11th, 2012

We are enthusiastic about our new business strategy and have an opportunity to add a salesperson to our team. Hooray!

Are you energetic and self-motivated? Are you hungry to make sales and do you thrive on the rush they give you? Do you have a keen understanding of the social, branding, marketing and business space in Omaha and beyond? dd|a – an intensely strategic and creative, award-winning “brandscaper” – is looking for an outstanding salesperson.

So the question is: Do you fit the bill, or do you know someone who might? Read on … Read the rest of this entry »

HR and Brand Management – Ignite Video

December 12th, 2011

As a follow up to our previous posts, especially this one here, asserting that HR and talent management decision makers must also own or, at least, drive the brand, here is the HR Ignite presentation encapsulating that concept, delivered at the HR Reinvention Experiment conference. For a primer on the Ignite format, take a look here.

Thanks to V180 Media for shooting the video and to Joe Gerstandt for organizing.

Holly, Jolly Holi-dd|a!

December 8th, 2011

It is bright and festive at dd|a this morning: cheerful Christmas lights draped across every possible surface, the Pandora “Michael Bublé Holiday” station serenading us from the conference room, the scent of our nine-foot Frasier Fir wafting whenever anyone walks by … plus, a few empty wine glasses, abandoned cheese trays and wrapping paper shreds from last night’s open house – evidence that good times were had by all.

We celebrated the season with clients on Wednesday evening to say “thank you!” for such a memorable year. All of us had a great time decorating our space, wrapping National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation-themed gag gifts (requiring movie-viewing research, of course) and enjoying the company of those who make our world go ‘round. Read the rest of this entry »