A list of simple solutions

I’m a simple guy and I like simple things. I like books that are easy to read, wine that is easy to drink, and insights that I instinctively know are true. I grew up in a small town and never went to university, so maybe I’m just too dumb to understand why some advertising proposals […]

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Colours of Tmall

This is just for fun, ok? A big part of my job in Shanghai revolves around e-commerce, especially Tmall — which owns over half of the online retail market in sales volume. So browsing through Tmall on a daily basis, I couldn’t help but notice the vivid colours, and how they’d create interesting swatches. It started […]

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Tap the mind to grasp the enormity of change in China

The mind is a mysterious place. We can never fully understand what goes on in the mind of someone else. We can never see and feel what others think or feel. Nor can we ever share our own thoughts and feelings without first translating them into words or actions, by which they’ve lost most of […]

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Nuance

(This was later also published on China Daily.) In moving to China, what surprised me most is the lack of a culture shock. Sure, Chinese history, language, culture, food, media and smartphone usage, and tons of thing are very different — and on my website I’ll continue to write aplenty about other peculiarities. But the […]

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Henk Sneevlietweg metro station

97 years ago today, the Communist Party of China held its first congress in Shanghai, to unify its branches across the country and plot its course through history. It was in fact a Dutchman, Henk Sneevliet, who had urged the Communist to gather for a national meeting. Sneevliet, also known as ‘Maring’, was a seasoned socialist […]

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The over-marketing of things, and praise for the OV-fiets

Originally written in Dutch on Marketingfacts. I’d like to talk about telecom providers who work with influencers, but communicate from a noreply email address, or have a ten minute telephone queue. About how every energy provider wants an app. About how the internet is about to burst with well-meant selfie campaigns and Facebook live-sessions and blogs that […]

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China’s media landscape and lessons for the West

Earlier trips to Shanghai already taught me that looking at China with an air of Western superiority is ill-advisable. While rural areas are still developing, urban areas are so far ahead in some aspects that at times, Shanghai felt like science-fiction. In moving from Amsterdam to Shanghai and started as a strategist at Seventy Agency, […]

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Ignorant predictions about China

Next Tuesday, I’m taking a one way ticket to China to start as strategist at Seventy Agency Shanghai. For months I’ve been looking forward and preparing for this. Yet there’s only so much I can learn from this side of the fence, and even in China I’m a foreigner and I’m not expecting to be able […]

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Resources added

Since the beginning of 2018 I’ve been collecting quotes, articles and reports from many tweeps and organisations like BBH Labs, the IPA and Thinkbox, who — to me — are a valuable goldmine of information. Here’s a list of most of what I found useful (work in progress). Resources

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Wedding rings bring worlds together

Lake Victoria is a huge fresh water basin that lies in between Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya. For over 500,000 years, rainfall and thousands of small streams gathered here and flowered northwards through the White Nile river. After 4,000 kilometers, the river is joined by the Blue Nile. Together they form the Nile, which flows through […]

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