Week 49: BMW, Bums and the Blockchain
Weekly web missives from the Friday strategy team. A selection of this week's encounters with design, business, trends and culture.
BMW have totally transformed their website, shifting its focus from product, to editorial. Its a huge change for a brand as big as BMW to make, and may have huge implications in the ROI of their web estate, so really intrigued to see how it plays out over time. The head of marketing has described the change as an SEO play, and described their global site as sitting in the "upper part of the funnel", so its certainly seems a bold, but well considered strategy.
After reading this piece on the women who sell nudes on Patreon we were struck by how, despite enormous disruption, some industries seamlessly move with the times. Granted these ladies are having a few teething problems asking some fans to pay for something they can find for free on most of the 'net, but by removing the traditional intermediary (the agency and the production company) they are becoming much more independent...and empowered? It's an interesting question.
This article about Fummi, a blockchain powered app designed to help those who don't have a bank account and are outside of the banking system, has inspired us today. Phones with the app pre-installed are distributed in the Bronx, so homeless New Yorkers can create an ID, open an account, receive money, and track their activity, like payments they made for showers, haircuts, doctor visits, etc. In the future it could help them access government benefits or programmes where ID needs to be authenticated.
In other news, regulation is coming to crypto. The UK and EU are plotting out the rules to enforce some of the shadier goings-on in, aka money laundering, terrorism funding, tax evasion, you know, the usual stuff... Big questions remain about whether you can for example, seize crypto assets, which fundamentally challenges the nature of crypto networks, in that no one user is more trusted/authoritative than another. But its coming, as can be seen recently in the US as the SEC have charged a recent ICO (Initial Coin Offering) with fraud.
Kpop just got waaaay bigger. The Korean group BTS (something about bullet proof boyscouts in acronym form) is officially the most tweeted about artist in 2017. Globally. Here's a bit of analysis from earlier in the year on why that might be.