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MEMOIRE DE RECHERCHE APPLIQUÉE Sup de Pub - Chicago/Paris Promotion 2015 SP4 - Art Direction

COFFEE AS A METAPHOR FOR CREATIVE COMMUNICATION “How is the process of making coffee similar to the creative process in Advertising and what it says about communication today? “

Mémoire proposé par Valentine Nouvel sous la direction de Benjamin Le Clercq

Sup de Pub Paris 31 Quai de la Seine 75019 Paris, France


AKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to thank the number of friends, classmates and strangers who pushed me to go forward with this subject and enabled me to meet many interesting people in my future trade like Eric Reagan and Robert Bertolini. This project was relateable to almost any creative I brought it to and created animated discussions about the subject. I also want to thank the Harrington College instructors who were very supportive and intrigued by my subject. Finally, I want to thank the number of people who answered my Case Study online and helped me illustrate and verify my hypotheses. Thank You for reading through this, I hope you find this work interesting and that it sparks further questions on your own creative process, as it did me.


INTRODUCTION My research process originally started around the subject of a universal language in the creative process amongst advertisers. I would have felt my research incomplete without actually comparing the different countries sociologically and having direct references from Art Directors around the globe. I therefore continued my research keeping this idea of a global creative process in mind. It was not until I read through several of my advertising books on the creative process while preparing myself a cup of coffee, that it hit me how similar it is to fabrication process of coffee itself. Through research, I found out that there are many points in which the processes of both the creative process and coffee are similar, and how the history of coffee and coffeehouses can be associated with the evolution of communication. I decided to do my study on explaining this relationship further and show how the evolution of coffee; its meaning, history, and the way it is marketed today, is directly comparable to the evolution of communication and what it has become. First, I focused on the culture of coffee, it’s history, process, how it is marketed and its benefits concerning productivity and innovation. Then, I went on to study multiple theories explaining the creative process. I based my understanding of the creative process by studying the different theories founded by philosophers and advertisers, adding in my own research which I obtained through interviews of creative thinkers, documentation and a case study of how people view their own creative processes in the USA and France.


I then introduced the notion of how coffee and the steps we follow in the making of a cup of coffee is actually very similar to these explanations; it was a plus having several of them state how the beverage in itself takes part in their personal process of creating an idea. This metaphor I developed for explaining the creative process in communication through coffee, led me to the conclusion that not only is there a similarity in the process but that the history of coffee and coffee culture is very much linked to communication and how it has evolved today. The purpose of this thesis is to make this understanding of the creative process available to everyone by comparing it to something everyone can relate to. It is also intended to show how to improve the environments in which creative ideas are formed in order to facilitate innovation. As an Art Direction major I have always felt that there is a cultural and moral purpose in developing an idea, may it be visual or conceptual. In this case it can be both, as I will explain through the numerous articles and research I accumulated and analyzed. The first part of my Thesis will be to introduce all the facts and explain the process of both Coffee and the Creative Process through a Literary Review of the research I have done. Then, I will cite and reveal what I learned through the different interviews conducted for this project. This first phase led me to develop several hypotheses and verify them through answers collected in my case study. Finally, I will conclude by explaining what I have learned and what recommendations I have concerning the way we teach the creative process today and how it can be improved to speed up innovation.


CONTENT

I) LITERARY REVIEW 1. CULTURE OF COFFEE 1.1 A brief history on the globalization of coffee 1.1.1 Origin and Discovery 1.1.2 The Coffee House Effect

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1.2 The process of making coffee 1.2.1 Different Techniques 1.2.2 Step By Step Phases

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1.3 Marketing and Branding of Coffee 1.3.1 Coffee in Advertising 1.3.2 Creating a social Environment 1.3.3 The Me Generation 1.3.4 The Me Me Me Generation

1.4 Effects of Coffee on Creativity 1.4.1 Positive Impact 1.4.2 Negative Impact

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2. EXPLAINING THE CREATIVE PROCESS

2.1 Definition of Creativity in Advertising

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2.2 Textbook theories on the creative process 2.2.1 Henri Poincaré’s study on creativity 2.2.2 Bloom’s Taxonomy on critical and creative thinking 2.2.3 James Webb Young’s Technique 2.2.4 Graham Wallace on The Art of Thought

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2.3 Art Directors illustrate the creative process today 2.3.1 Iain Cohen, Wexley School for Girls Agency 2.3.2 David Horridge, Thirty-One Creative 2.3.3 Jim Haven, Creature Agency

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3. COFFEE AND COMMUNICATION 3.1 A Digital Coffee House 3.1.1 Coffee and Social Networks 3.2 Connecting people through Coffee and Creativity 3.2.1 Coffee as more than a product, an atmosphere 3.2.2 Coffee as a creative tool in future education methods

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II) HYPOTHESES & STUDY CASE 1. HYPOTHESES 1.1 Through the evolution of technologies and new types of communication, the coffee shop has gone from it’s primary function of social environment to this notion of innovation hub favorable to creative thinking.

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1.2 Art Directors and their creative process can be linked with the process of coffee.

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2. INTERVIEWS 2.1 Mr. Tom Marquardt 2.1.1 Coffee houses as branded Environments

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2.2 MR Eric Reagan, Leo Burnett Chicago 2.3.1 Creative Process of an associate creative Director in Agency

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2.3 Mr. Robert Bertolini 2.2.1 Creative Process of an Art Director in Freelance 2.4 Mr. Jonathan Sangster, Harrington College of Design 2.4.1 Creative Process of a Creative Educator

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3. CASE STUDY

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3.1 Introduction 3.2 Survey and analysis 3.3 Conclusion of study 4. VALIDATION OF HYPOTHESES

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III) RECOMMENDATIONS

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1. VISUAL RECOMMENDATION 1.1 A New way of teaching the creative process 2. STRATEGIC RECOMMENDATION 2.1 Creating an environment that facilitates innovation

IV) APPENDIX

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V) BIBLIOGRAPHY & REFERENCES

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I LITTERARY REVIEW

1. CULTURE OF COFFEE 1.1 A brief history on the globalization of coffee This first part will help set a context to how the coffee bean became a global product and took part in many of the world’s historical moments. There are many sources where I could have found the detailed history of coffee-drinking but I found the most complete to be a PBS documentary called Black Coffee, 2005; a Canadian documentary on the cultural history of coffee written and directed by Irene Angelico and produced by Ina Fichman. To further talk about coffee and it’s impact on our culture and communication today, it is important to explore its origins. Coffee is the second most traded commodity on earth after oil and has been at the center of conversations for hundreds of years1. In explaining how this seed has had an enormous political, social, cultural and economic impact, the documentary is segmented in order of which the coffee bean made it’s way across the different countries. According to Mark Pendergrast, author of Uncommon Grounds, no one knows exactly where the name Coffee came from or how the plant was discovered, 1. BLACK COFFEE was produced by Ina Fichman and Productions La Fête (Coffee) Inc. in association with TVOntario with the participation of the Canadian Television Fund created by the


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but it all started in a place called “the cradle of humanity” also known as Ethiopia. Some people say that coffee was called after a little town in Ethiopia called Kafka, yet others say the town was called after the coffee. The name “Coffee”, could have also come from the Arab word for wine, Kawa. They saw it as a substitute for wine which was not allowed in their culture. There is a legend on how the coffee bean was discovered, it is a folktale of Ethiopia stating that there was once a Sheppard who found his goats running excitedly around a type of cherry tree. Haji Hussen Mohamad, a village elder from Kafka tells the story as it was told to him: “He picked some of the fruits growing from the tree and tasted them, he immediately felt a rush of excitement and a kind of energy he had never felt. He started singing and dancing and wanting to write poetry for his lover. He brought some cherries back to the village and shared his new found inspiration” The coffee cherries were simply chewed at first and then grounded with fat to make energy bars of sorts by the Ethiopians. Later they started brewing the leaves with boiled water resulting in a sort of tea. It isn’t until the 1400’s that someone, perhaps accidentally, roasted the beans and discovered how good they smelled. They began to grind them and brew a black potent beverage that they drank as a community ritual before every dish. Coffee spread quickly through the Arab lands through the Sufi’s who drank it as a ceremonial beverage allowing them to practice their ritual dances all through the night, and then going back to their daily lives and talking about this transcendental experience. Coffee took its place into secular life as people from the cities became more acquainted with the product. Somehow the way it made it’s way into the community happened almost in the same way in many different countries. In the city of Mocha for example, wealthy people developed the ceremonial aspect of coffee to a social drink and dedicated rooms to it. The poor gathered in coffee houses which became social venues for people to meet and talk, accepting of any social class. Coffee houses were considered as a source of vice, sedition and revolution as people never Government of Canada and the Canadian Cable Industry, Telefilm Canada: Equity Investment Program, CTF: Licence Fee Program, Government of Quebec Tax Credit Program, Canadian Film or Video


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saw such a place before. But as they became more popular, people started meeting there, only the men at the time, where they engaged in discussions of politics, mixed opinions and discussed the world. There were arguments between the Sultan of Cairo and the governor of Mocha as the latter wanted to ban the intoxicant beverage while the sultan who loved the brew made it even more popular. The disputes amongst the ruling classes only added to the popularity of the irresistible bean. As the Turks conquer the Arab world, they inherit coffee and coffee culture. They become more vigilant about protecting the beans which were a very jealously guarded commodity, particularly after the Ottoman Church took over. Although they did spread coffee throughout the Ottoman Empire, they hard boiled them to make them infertile before export. People tried to smuggle them out,and eventually an Indian name Bababudhan, taped some of the fertile beans across his stomach and achieved to bring them back to India. Then the Dutch got hold of some seeds and began growing them in their greenhouses in Amsterdam. From Holland, the Dutch transport the coffee plant to their colony in Java where they enslave the natives and force them to cultivate coffee. By 1683 the beans from Mocha & Java are the most sought after beans and coffee starts to conquer Europe along with the armies of the sultan. It made it’s way through Europe after the siege of Vienna when the French came and defeated the Arab troops who fled leaving behind the precious coffee beans. Soon after that, a polish man by the name of Franz Georg Koltschitzky who had lived in Arab lands and knew the ways of roasting coffee, opened the Blue Bottle, Vienna’s first coffeehouse. People in Vienna did not like the grounds left at the bottom of their cup and started filtering the coffee, they added milk as well to dilute the strong taste. That is the way they have coffee today still. While the Viennese introduced the modern way of drinking coffee, the perfection of coffee culture took place in Italy, but as in other European countries, there is resistance to the exotic beverage at first. Citing Tax Credit Program, National Film Board of Canada, The Harold Greenberg Fund, Historia, TFO.


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Ian Bersten, Author of Coffee, sex and health says: “For some reason, coffee arrives in Europe with negative connotations and somewhat of a warning: something bad is coming that everybody is going to like. ” The Turkish men went to coffeehouses and bathhouses without the women and were known to have had homosexuals in the Turkish Regiments. Consequently, the notion of coffee as the “Turkish drink” meant that there was an association that coffee made you effeminate. This attitude was brought over to Venice and the “Arabic telephone” unraveled across the different European cities with the same message of vice and liberation. The retelling of stories about the effect of the brew and the curiosity of these coffeehouses through different countries and culture, results in some variants people all had different thoughts about the brew. The first coffee business opened in London in 1652 at the Jamaica coffee house. The English are well known for being tea drinkers but it was actually them who where the first coffee drinkers in Europe. By 1700 there were 2000 coffee houses in London alone, and every single one attracted different types of customers. The writers would go to one, the bankers to another and so on with the sea farmers and such. Intellects referred to the coffeehouses as penny universities, because for a penny you could buy a cup of coffee and have interesting conversation. London’s coffee houses spawned many of its important business and customs since the men were interacting and discussing deals of information about incoming product or change in these places. When coffee first arrived in England it had a bad reputation, women had these ideas of it being bad for men, making them weak sexually. As women were not allowed in coffee shops they could not know that the men occasionally enjoyed the company of prostitutes on the upper floors. When they returned home, spent, saying they had a cup of coffee, the women would say “ nothing moist but the tip of their noses, nothing stiff but their joints, and nothing standing but their ears”. This resulted in the very first pamphlets put out by the Ladies of London: A Maiden’s


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Complaint trying to ban the drink. Their thought on the drink continued through folkloric tales told through generations and resulted in the coffee houses becoming Private Men’s Clubs and in the rise of Public Tea Rooms. Tea took over in England, it was cheaper and simpler to make, was supported by the women and were a good economical choice with the East India Company coming in play and bringing profits for tea. Until recently, the average English man would drink the same amount of coffee a year as a Italian drinks in 2 days. According to Renato Constantin, Maître de café Florian in Venice, St Mark’s Square, Coffee was received with skepticism by Venetians. After the opening of the Florian in 1720, the first café to open in Venice, they got used to it eventually. In the next 30 years, over 200 cafés opened in Venice. They were cafés for the bourgeois and the Elite, like the Florian was. Although they enjoyed the exotic drink, they did not want to mix with people from outer lands and that is how the Lavena Cafe across the Square became the foreigner’s cafe. It was also known for being the Richard Wagner’s cafe, the composer used to play there every afternoon at 5 o’clock and then retired upstairs in the upper gallery with other musicians to write and discuss their work. At that time, the Russian Richard Wagner composed at the Lavena while the Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi was playing at the Florian. This is the first recollection of coffee houses being meeting and creative places for musicians and artist. This is seen in France as well when cafés become a place to give expression to caffeine inspired eruptions of imagination and ideas. The French novelist Balzac wrote in a café while drinking his usual 40 cups of coffee a day. He said “ sparks shoot all the way to the brain and then a cavalry of metaphor deploys with magnificent gallop.” Edith Sorel, French writer and journalist explains that even though the French are famous for their cafés, the bean arrived later than in most of Europe. In the late 1600’s, the Turkish sultan who was the ambassador to Paris set this craze for all things Arab, French people would dress

Richard Wagner playing piano in the Lavena Café, Venice, Italy


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up with turban types of accessories, lay on divans and drink coffee. It took Paris by storm, but they still did not know how to make it then and it was not until an Italian, Procopio Del Cartel, seized the opportunity in 1686 and opened the Café Le Procope that the French culture was introduced to the coffee house and launched a new kind of social life for the Parisians. The first to embrace the new fashion were women enticed by the choice of beverages and patisseries like the first Croissants named after the crescent of the Turks defeated in Vienna. Men came, attracted by the beautiful women and then joined by curious citizens and passerby; the café society was born. From the earliest days of Le Procope, the French had been gathering in cafés to engage one another in discussion and debate. Conversation can be held to a fine art now that coffee replaces beer and wine at every meal. Indeed, everyone drank at that time, men, women, children, people of the high society and the lower classes; and they drank a lot. In France under Louis XIV and XV in the 17th and 18th centuries; a man drank an average of 7 to 8 liters of wine per day plus a half liter of hard alcohol a day, while still working 14, 15 hours in that same day. The most famous cafés at the time were set in the 6th arrondisement; The golden Triangle, on one side you have “Les Deux Magots and the cafe de Flore, both famous literary cafés which attracted writers and artists, then, across the street was the Lipp Brasserie which specialized in politicians, chief of states and film stars. As coffee created this stimulating social ferment, it was a great place for propaganda and to catch up on the news. The coffee shop started putting newspapers at disposal and became a place where people had political discussions. Edith Sorel states that many revolutionary movements started in Cafés, for instance, Mara, Robespierre and Danton, before they had their heads cut off, they discussed and tried to create action amongst the people in these cafés. A great example of that is after the fall of the Bastille when Camille Desmoulins met with his followers at the café de Foy. That’s where he made his famous declaration, took a leaf from the tree of the Palais Royal and said they should all wear a


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cocarde on their hats, as he does, to recognize each other. So the Café de Foy, became the Café des “cocardiers” who would later be called the revolutionaries. The revolutionary tradition of cafés lives on in the ideas and intensity of the new generations through public manifestations and heated debates. In 1700, Europeans consumed more then 500,000 lbs of coffee, in 1800, a hundred years later, their consumption increased to 100,000,000 lbs, so the French were eager to expand their trade. The opportunity comes when a young lieutenant by the name of Gabriel de Clieu seduces one of the king’s mistresses who ends up gifting him with a coffee plant. Gabriel de Clieu brings the single plant across the ocean on a boat and defends it during the long journey across, protecting it from drought, piracy, weather and jealous passengers. He plants it upon his arrival in Martinique. It thrived and most of the coffee that has now grown in the entirety of Latin America descended from this plant. In only 100 years, coffee had established itself as a commodity crop throughout the world. Missionaries and travelers, traders and colonists continued to carry coffee seeds to new lands and coffee trees were planted worldwide. Plantations were established in tropical forests and on rugged mountain highlands. Some crops flourished, while others were short-lived. New nations were established on coffee economies.  Fortunes were made and lost.  And by the end of the 18th century, coffee had become one of the world’s most profitable export crops.


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According to a study on Coffee Culture by Tucker Catherine M, 2011, many factors contributed to the expansion and globalization of the coffee consumer culture, including the faster pace of life and the public’s need for casual spots to study, relax, socialize or pick up an energy drink. Historically, coffee houses gained fame as they were place for intellectual discussion, political, debates and free social expression. Tucker gives examples of famous ideas brought forth in coffeehouses; Adam Smith wrote his influential political treatise The Wealth of Nations in one and Isaac Newton’s ground-breaking Principia Mathematica actually grew out of a challenge to resolve an argument in a coffeehouse, during which no one had been able to prove why planets had elliptical orbits (Standage 2005). Today, coffee houses have become much more then just a place to drink coffee and offer a multitude of services. The introduction of the World Wide Web also played a big role as it gave yet another function to coffee houses which could now become cyber cafés. They appeal to the human desire for social interaction and connection to others, even if one plans to be alone. One Viennese commentator characterized coffeehouses as “the ideal place for people who want to be alone but need company for it” (Pendergrast 1999:380). Another point Catherine M. Tucker makes is that these places can recreate and symbolize the global influence of Western Coffee culture as well as expressing a specific local culture; that is why it is seen as such a familiar space.

1.2 The process of making coffee Even though the myth talks of a single ancestral line of coffee acting in its propagation, as coffee cultures spread, people started choosing seeds for specific qualities which developed production of new varieties of coffee. By the 1800’s, coffee plantations around the world were growing numerous varieties that differed from the original coffee plant2 . Many elements of the preparation process affect the taste and variations in 2.Tucker, Catherine M. 2011. Coffee Culture: Local Experiences, Global Connections. New York: Routledge.


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the final product. First of all, the coffee’s chemical composition can be changed to achieve different flavors by the farmers who create new species of coffee plants, then, the actual roasting process also influences this change as the beans can be heated for different lengths of time and at different temperature. There are many factors the farmers need to take into account before even planting the crops, like wind exposure, temperature variability, water availability, topography, elevation, soil and risks of pests or diseases. The most common varieties of coffee are known as Robusta and Arabica, the Robusta kind can tolerate drought and weather changes better than the other. In average, a coffee plantation requires 250 to 300 work days of labor per 2.5 acres (1 hectare), and about 60% of the work occurs during harvest season (Descroix and Wintgens 2009). One cherry produces 2 coffee beans, these cherries ripen at different pastes which means they need to be individually handpicked in order to keep the product to its highest quality. The mechanical harvest takes all the cherries at once which ends in a mixture of ripe, unripe and rotten cherries resulting in a lower quality coffee which is usually used for instant coffee or in cheap blends. The Arabica plants produce the world’s best coffee as they can’t withstand machine-picking and must be harvested by hand. The USA National Coffee Association gives us insight on the process it takes to get from the seed and into our cups3. A coffee farmer when selecting the land to grow the crops takes into account the space needed to implement their seedbeds, nurseries and plantation areas. The seeds are first planted in shaded areas called nurseries where the beans sprout up from the ground. The seedlings are then replanted in individual pots within the carefully selected soil. Watered frequently and shaded from sunlight, they grow until they are sturdy enough to be replanted again. This last step usually takes place during the wet season to keep the soil moist and allow the roots to grow. The variety of the plant influences the length it will take for the plant to 3.National Coffee Association of U.S.A., Inc


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Drying the beans

be ready for harvest, which is approximately 3 to 4 years before it begins to bear cherries. When ripe, the cherry turns from green or yellow to a bright red. Whether it is picked by hand or goes through a mechanized process, the coffee cherries can be harvested in two ways: they are either Strip Picked or Selectively Picked. The difference between the two techniques is that when Strip Picked, the entire crop is harvested at once, and when Selectively Picked only the ripe cherries are harvested, laborers rotating among the trees every 8 to 10 days. Most coffeegrowing countries have one major harvest a year but in countries like Columbia there are two flowerings a year. Once it is harvested, the cherries are transported to the processing station. To prevent Spoilage of the seed, the processing has to start immediately. Here again, there are two ways of processing the cherries, The dry method and the wet method. The dry method is the original way to process the beans as in many countries where it is grown, water resources are limited. The cherries are spread out on huge surfaces to dry in the sun, they are raked and turned throughout the day and covered at night to prevent from spoiling. This process can take several weeks until the moisture of the cherries drops to 11 percent after which they are sent for storage. The wet method begins with removing the pulp around the coffee seeds, usually through a pulping machine, the beans are then separated by weight through a water system; the lighter beans float to the top and the heavier ones sink to the bottom. Next, they are separated by size through a series of rotating drums. After this separation process, the beans are transported to water-filled fermentation tanks where they will remain for 12 to 48 hours in order to remove the last layer of skin from the bean called the parenchyma. Finally they are rinsed and sent for drying using the same method as the dry method, they are differentiated from the latter by being referred to as parchment coffee. Before it is exported, the parchment coffee undertakes more processing which is called Milling the beans. First machines remove the layers still surrounding the beans which is called hulling, then they can be polished or not for a more pleasant look, therefore increasing the value. Finally they are


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sorted again by size and weight and evaluated by color flaws and other imperfections. This whole process insures that only the finest quality beans are exported. These milled beans are called “green coffee due to the color of the raw seed. It is shipped in either jutes or sisal bags, loaded in shipping containers for export. Approximately seven million tons of green coffee is produced worldwide each year. During all the stages of the process, the coffee is tasted repeatedly to ensure the quality and taste, this is called “Cupping”. This a careful process in which the bean is evaluated visually, then roasted, ground, infused into boiling water at a carefully controlled temperature and poured into a cup. First, the tester or “cupper” experiences the aroma by smelling the brew and after waiting a few minutes he “breaks the crust” or pushes aside the grounds accumulated at the top of the cup. He “noses” it again before tasting it. Yet again there is a particular method for tasting, the cupper brings a spoonful to his mouth and slurps it in order to spread the coffee evenly across the taste buds before spitting it out. An expert cupper can taste hundreds of samples of coffee a day and still taste the subtle differences between them. The final steps are roasting, grinding and brewing the coffee, they are mostly performed by the importing country because once prepped they must reach the consumer quickly with as little degradation as possible. Roasting the beans changes them from green to the roasted brown colors as we know them to be, they are cooked in a temperature of about 550 degrees Fahrenheit and are kept in a moving rotation to avoid burning. As they turn brown, the caffeol or oil inside the beans emerges, this is called the pyrolysis process and is what produces the flavor and aroma of the coffee. When roasting is finished, the beans are immediately cooled by either air or water. Then they are either packaged as is or grounded for commercial distribution. The grinding phase of the coffee beans depends entirely on the way it will be brewed in order to get the most flavor. The more it is grounded and the finer the grind, the faster


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the coffee is to be prepared, which is why the coffee ground used in espresso machines is much finer than coffee brewed by a drip system. The many ways of brewing the coffee can also change it’s final composition. For example, filtered coffee removes some of the fat compounds from the bean whereas boiled, French Pressed or espresso coffees do not. An info-graphic by Coffee Bean Direct explains the different options used in grinding and brewing coffee.4 Science and Food UCLA goes further into the subject by stating that as innovations occur in this field and options are constantly growing, why stick to just one method? Each utensil has different extraction process and requirements for grind coarseness, heat and time, but for all methods the process is basically the same. It must first be ground, then it’s soluble components must be dissolved in water to become the resulting brew. Coffee brewing is generally classified under Three types: decoction, Infusion or steeping,

4.Full Infographic by CoffeeBeanDirect.com can be found in Appendix


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and pressure methods5. The most well known ways of brewing coffee other than the espresso machine are the Percolator, the French Press, the Chemex, the Auto-Drip, the Stop-top Espresso, the Siphon and the Airopress but there are many more and each functions with the same big steps for a different result in coffee taste and strength. According to Kicking Horse Coffee, a blog dedicated to coffee, the different brewing methods are mostly a subjective choice by the consumer and one is not better than the other6. 1.3 Marketing and Branding of Coffee The increase of coffee consumption and marketing of coffee took place in association with the expansion of industrial production. Catherine Tucker’s research and other sources explain the importance media took in the expansion of this coffee culture. With the expansion of global production, and improvement of roasting technology came the drip-filterbrewing method which was invented in 1908 by a German housewife by the name of Frau Melitta Benz. This method spread and became the most popular across the USA and by 1930 coffee drinking had spread 5. Science and Food Supported by the UCLA Division of Life Sciences and Department of Integrative Biology & Physiology: Coffee Brewing Methods Posted on February 17, 2015 by CATHERINE HU 6. How different brewing methods affect your cup, Posted on March 14th 2014 by Maddie


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throughout society and annual coffee consumption increased to around 10 pounds per capita compared with 3 pounds per capita in 18307. Media played a big role in coffee culture and on how it was perceived by the community by diffusing medical studies of coffee to advertisers and using slogans designed by industrial psychologist and marketing experts influencing the consumer to drink a specific brand or increase/ decrease their consumption. At the same time, the consumers have participated in the growth and communication of the coffee industry by embracing or resisting companies and media promotions, at times even pressuring companies to make a change in their product. The principle of ad campaigns is to use social values and established preferences of the consumers to sell product by association. The first ad campaign was launched by the Joint Coffee Publicity Committee in 1921, it brought forward this notion of energy drink telling people to consume it when tired in the late morning or afternoon. It was supported by a study financed by the coffee lobby which showed coffee consumption helped maintain productivity. It is that same initiative that introduced coffee stations in businesses where coffee breaks became part of the work day (JimÊnez 1995) and into everyday home life by advising housewives to learn how to brew coffee and keep their husbands happy. Around that same time, instant coffee became available as new forms of coffee like iced coffee and flavored drinks made their way on the market. This only increased the number of coffeehouses and developed competition and specialization amongst them. Not only did the specialty drinks and coffee they served differ, they started developing unique atmosphere attracting different customers with services and secondary products (books, music, artworks). This intentional or accidental niche marketing was precedented in the 17th century London coffeehouses and took off in the USA during the 1980’s due to change in coffee 7.Tucker, Catherine M. 2011. Coffee Culture: Local Experiences, Global Connections. New York: Routledge.


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drinking patterns. Indeed as Roseberry states in 1996, there was a fall in the percentage of coffee drinkers between 1960 and 1988 from 74% to 50%. This was a result of small coffee roasters transferring to the sell of soft drinks in order to attract the younger generations not interested in drinking the same thing as their parents, as well as the decrease in quality of coffee by the Transnational Corporations (e.g., Nestlé, General foods, Philip Morris) that dominated the industry in order to get more profit8. As the consumers began to drift towards the soft drinks industry, coffee was becoming a standardized product and the average consumer of these major brands (Folgers, Maxwell House, Hills Brothers) could not taste the difference. While still advertising this idea of quality and social relevance, the corporations gradually started replacing Arabica beans with cheaper Robusta beans, maintaining the prices, thinking the consumer would not realize the difference in taste. It was then, in the 1970’s that independent entrepreneurs and roasters took advantage of this lack of good quality coffee to start experimenting with quality beans, creating their own blends and fresh-roasted coffees. One of these small roasters managed to develop a faithful clientele, starting out in 1971 at Pike Place Market in Seattle under the name of Starbucks. This once local roasting shop was bought in 1987 by an ambitious entrepreneur named Howard Schultz who not only turned it into a coffee-shop but into a Coffee company. Dicum and Luttinger, 1999, state that Starbucks became an early trend-setter by introducing the modern coffeehouse to US society9, distinguishing itself by committing to the quality of their coffees and by defining the space as a “third place” apart from work and home. According to Starbucks Coffee Company, by 2009 it had 16,706 stores in over 50 countries10. The company has since then been put on a pedestal, praised and acknowledged for its excellence in branding, marketing and for creating a branded experience that can satisfy a diversity of consumers by satisfying the coffee connoisseur as well as bringing in new clients, 8.The Rise of Yuppie Coffees and the Reimagination of Class in the United States, William Roseberry, American Anthropologist, New Series, Vol. 98, No. 4. (Dec., 1996), pp. 762-775 9. The Coffee Book: Anatomy of an Industry from Crop to the Last Drop – April 24, 2006 by Nina Luttinger and Gregory Dicum 10. Starbucks Company Information, 2010


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being accessible to all and being irresistible in its appeal11. An interview of Stanley Hainsworth conducted by Debbie Millman gives insight on the creative and marketing decisions he made for Starbucks while he was the vice president global creative. He defined the feel and symbolic of the company in an era when the brand was becoming a cultural icon and coffeehouses where experiencing phenomenal growth in the USA. He created an innovative criteria of five filters: handcrafted, artistic, sophisticated, human, and enduring—that defined the work for the company. In this interview he speaks about the importance of vision and authenticity in brand design, being relate-able to the consumer and offering an experience not just a product. As Stanley says, “No one is going to pick up your product and try it if they don’t want to buy into the experience.” According to him, the intention to create a social environment was deliberate. “Howard Schultz went over to Milan and saw the coffee culture and espresso bars where people met in the morning. He saw how people caught up on the news while they sat or stood and drank their little cups of espresso. That inspired the vision he crafted from the beginning—to design a social environment where people not only came for great coffee, but also to connect to a certain culture.” He knew Starbucks was not the only company to make great coffee but the differentiator was in creating a community, a “third place”. According to Hainsworth, it was a very conscious attribute of the brand all along and it impacted every decision about the experience: who the furniture was chosen for, what artwork would be on the walls, what music was going to be played, and how it would be played. As Starbucks grew into the gigantic company it is today, it inspired a generation of coffee entrepreneurs to open their own coffee shops, but it also gained the reputation of driving local coffee shops and smaller chains out of business. Interestingly enough, in his article “Don’t Fear Starbucks, why the franchise actually helps mom and pop coffeehouses by Taylor Clark in 2007, having a Starbucks open next to a local coffee-shop actually helps the independently owned coffeehouses by bringing new 11. How Starbucks Transformed Coffee from a commodity into a $4 splurge, Fastcompany 2011 by Debbie Millman


1.3.2 Creating a social Environment

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consumers to the area. It creates a flux and brings more people towards the store, gives them this option of an authentic coffeehouse next to the corporation12. In Coffee Culture, Catherine Tucker gives examples of how smaller chains have been successful by developing their own particularity, through their specialty drinks and/or environments. She gives examples of coffeehouses around the world that have come up with original stand-out specialties; like in Banda Aceh, Indonesia, customers like coffee poured over a raw egg to drink for breakfast. A Taiwanese coffee chain serves a hugely popular coffee topped with saltinfused foam. In Houston, Coffeegroundz Café expanded its clientele by taking to-go orders through Twitter. She concludes that these creative niche marketing have helped independent operations to survive and that they account for more than half of the coffeehouses in the USA. Like many 20th and 21st century urban environments, the café mediates the private within the public13 in a manner that enables one to have solitude while still surrounded by noises and people. Writer Anna Gibbs describes the experience: “sitting by the window in a café watching the busy street-scape with the warmth of the morning sun on my back, I smell the delicious aroma of coffee and simultaneously feel its warmth in my mouth, taste it, and can tell the choice of bean as I listen idly to the chatter in the café around me and all these things blend into my experience of “being in the café.” To her the coffee house is full of connections, between people, the chatter, the music, the smells, the comfort and this creates a personal yet global experience. The meanings and use of coffee may also be influenced by social relations and class divisions. The French social scientist, Pierre Bourdieu (1984), conducted a detailed survey of the French population to explore relationships among education, occupation, cultural knowledge, economic resources, preferences, and behaviors. The analysis found that different occupational classes in French society express distinctive patterns in cultural knowledge, economic resources, preferences, and 12. Don’t Fear Starbucks, Why the franchise actually helps mom and pop coffeehouses by Taylor Clark, 2007. 13. Media Culture Journal Vol. 15, No. 2 by Anthony McCosker, Rowan Wilken, 2012


18 1.3.3 The Me Generation

taste. Bourdieu’s insights suggest that meanings and preferences associated with coffee, as well as knowledge and access to information about coffee, likely will vary across different social classes in any given society. In these environments, ideas and meanings are subject to negotiation and debate as different classes in society interact and attempt to advance their interests and values.14 For the coffee industry to survive the slower coffee consumption of the 1960’s, a new marketing strategy was implemented. Keneth Roman Jr, the president of Ogilvy and Mather which was one of the PR firms that supported Maxwell House at the time, suggested the consumer be made more aware about what made coffee worth the price by emphasizing value, quality and image. The vision for the “Me Generation” was to create a type of coffee that would appeal for every person, coffee for the aficionados, the penny-counters, those on-the-go, the senior community who evolved at the same time as coffee, and the soft drink generation.15 This is where the Specialty coffee started, a personalization of the brew to adapt to its customer. “We are entering the ‘me’ generation. The crucial questions ‘me’ oriented customers will ask, of all types of products, are: “What’s in it for me? Is the product ‘me’? Is it consistent with my lifestyle? Does it fill a need? Do I like how it tastes? What will it cost me? Is it necessary? Can I afford it? Is it convenient to prepare? How will it affect my health?” (Roseberry 1996: 765) Today’s generation is known as the Millennial Generation or the Me Me Me Generation as Time Magazine states in its May 2013 issue. They are the children of the Me Generation also known as baby boomers. Joel Stein in this article describes them as obsessed with themselves, their ego exacerbated by the technologies by which they are surrounded16. They understand how to turn themselves into brands and prone positivity and confidence in order to gain more “friends” and “followers”. Companies not only have had to adjust to this connected generation but 14. Coffee Culture: Local Experiences, Global Connections, Society, Class, and Taste, By Catherine M. Tucker 2011 15. The Culture of Coffee Drinkers By Krystal D’Costa, August 11, 201 16. Time Magazine, Millennials: The Me Me Me Genration by Joel Stein, 2013


1.3.4 The Me Me Me Generation

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also to their atmospheric expectations by providing secondary places to exercise, meet, and participate in other activities than work. “The Internet was always 50-50 positive and negative. And now it’s 90-10,” says Shane Smith, the 43- year-old CEO of Vice, which adjusted from being a Gen X company in print to a millennial company once it started posting videos online viewed by a much younger audience. According to him, this generation is the one that engages with brands at a much faster pace and can make or break one with a single message on social media, therefore it is important that the brands take that into account while developing their brand experience.

1.4 Effects of Coffee on Creativity Catherine M. Tucker also studied the variations in individual physiological sensitivity to coffee. She draws the conclusion that the reactions to coffee can vary greatly depending on the individual, their personality types and genetic signature. One study found that at low caffeine doses, introverts responded more dramatically than extroverts on a number of physiological indicators, including higher heart rates. At high doses, however, introverts’ responsiveness declined while extroverts showed linear, increasing reactions17. This study can be supported by a New York Times article, maintaining that even though extreme quiet tends to sharpen your focus, it can prevent you from thinking in the abstract and “outside the box”. In a series of experiments that looked at the effects of noise on creative thinking, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign had participants brainstorm ideas for new products while they were exposed to varying levels of background noise. Their results, published in The Journal of Consumer Research, found that a level of ambient noise typical of a bustling coffee shop or a television playing in a living room, about 70 decibels, enhanced performance compared with the relative quiet of 50 decibels. A higher level of noise, however, about 85 decibels, roughly the noise level generated by a blender 17. US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health- The lateralized processing of affect in emotionally labile extraverts and introverts: central and autonomic effects.Smith BD 1995


20 1.4.2 Positive Impact on Creativity

or a garbage disposal, was too distracting18. The benefits of moderate noise, however, apply only to creative tasks. Projects that require paying close attention to detail, like proofreading a paper or doing your taxes, Dr. Mehta said, are performed better in quiet environments. Ravi Mehta and his colleagues also found that large, open rooms with high ceilings may also promote creative thinking, Around the same time, the New Yorker published an article on how caffeine can cramp creativity. This article focuses on the beverage itself and starts by explaining the physical effects it has on our brain. When we drink a caffeinated beverage, the caffeine quickly crosses the blood-brain barrier, and proceeds to block the activity of a substance called adenosine. Normally, adenosine signals the release of various chemicals into the brain, lowering energy levels and promoting sleep, among other regulatory bodily functions. When it’s blocked, we’re less likely to fall asleep on our desks or feel our focus drifting. According to a recent review of some hundred studies, caffeine has a number of distinct benefits, notably that it boosts energy and decreases fatigue; enhances physical, cognitive, and motor performance; and aids shortterm memory, problem solving, decision making, and concentration19. Coffee results in a focus and intense concentration so it prevents the thinking from becoming too diffused. Another point the author, Maria Konnikova, makes is that coffee keeps you awake which prevents you from experiencing the REM phase of sleep which is necessary to creative thinking according to a 2009 Study. In the last study she analysed, eighty-eight habitual coffee drinkers were given cups of caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee at random. Half were told that they were receiving regular coffee, and half were informed that they were given decaf. Each participant then completed tasks that measured things like reaction time, self-control, reward motivation, and mood. In the Stroop task, which measures reaction time, improved accuracy was observed in subjects who believed they had ingested 18. How the Hum of a Coffee Shop Can Boost Creativity by Anahad O’Connor , New York Times 2013 19. How Caffeine Can Cramp Creativity, by BY MARIA KONNIKOVA The New Yorker 2013


1.4.2 Negative Impact on Creativity

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caffeinated coffee, even if they had only consumed decaf. Subjects who received caffeine and were told they were drinking decaf did not show an improved reaction time. Likewise, in a measure of reward motivation, the Card Arranging Reward Responsivity Objective Test, the participants who believed they had consumed caffeine sorted the cards more quickly than those who believed they’d consumed decaf. Her conclusion in her research is that when one expects caffeine to have a certain effect, that person can be able to attain it by simply believing in it regardless if the caffeine itself is causing these effects. She goes back to Balzac’s case, known for indulging in extreme caffeine boosts while writing, stating that an extremely caffeinated approach may be productive in order to fulfill several hours of research and focus that form raw material for most creative projects but that the mind has to wander every now and then to allow new ideas to sink in as you go along.

2. THE CREATIVE PROCESS 2.1 Definition of Creativity in Advertising In the Advertising world and to an ad agency, creativity is perceived as a way to address complicated problems for the benefit of the client in a smart and consumer oriented way. Creativity in itself is an abstract concept so there is not one theory that can fully explain the concept although multiple approaches have been studied and validated. In the context of advertising, there are two vital elements to creativity: Originality and Appropriateness. These elements can translate into something seen as new and valuable by the consumer and client20. The definition as of 2015 by Wikipedia is : Creativity is a phenomenon whereby something new and somehow valuable is formed. The created item may be intangible (such as an idea, a scientific theory, a musical composition or a joke) or an original physical object (an invention, a literary work or a painting). 20. Big Idea Patterns of the Advertising Creative Process by Cabe Erin Lindsay, B.A., University of Texas at Austin 2011


22 2.1 Definition of Ceativity in Advertising

The “Big Idea” in Advertising can be described as a contribution to a brand’s image in an original and appropriate way. According to Robin Landa in Advertising By Design,2010, a Big Idea is a solid, creative, onbrand idea that is large enough and flexible enough to be used effectively across media for a period of time.

2.2 Textbook theories on the creative process Erin Lindsay finds through analyzing the creative processes that there are behaviors, techniques, and resources that have proven to be indispensable and therefore embraced by advertising creatives in order to achieve these big ideas. There are specific behaviors that clearly define successful creatives, and there are techniques and resources that creatives commonly use to arrive at the “big idea”. Studies suggest that there are idea creation techniques that can help simplify and improve the decision-making processes involved in designing advertising strategies and execution. They can be learned and trained as effective, efficient tools for real-life applications. Here I will focus on four of the most famous creative processes used in the education of advertising techniques. The first and best-known description of creative activity is Henri Poincaré’s study on how Creativity works. The famous French mathematician observed a type of process applicable not only to Mathematics but to any creative discipline by explaining the powerful role of unconscious incubation. His study can be found in The Foundations of Science: Science and Hypothesis, the Value of Science, Science and Method, 1904, in a chapter titled “Mathematical Creation”. Poincaré puts the focus on the sudden illumination and appearance of the answer to a problem by distancing yourself from it temporarily. He found that when he focused too hard on a problem and started obsessing nothing came, but that when distancing himself and 21. French Polymath Henri Poincaré on How Creativity Works by Maria Popova, Brain Pickings, 2012


2.2.1 Henri Pointcaré’s study on creativity

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circumstances forced him to put it aside, the brain kept thinking about a solution unconsciously and a solution presented itself, almost for no apparent reason. He discovered this when taking a trip to Caen and leaving one his unfinished theories behind, it was only when he stopped thinking about the unresolved problem that the idea came to him. When he went back home and verified the problem, it was solved. Not only were circumstances and procrastination valuable to how he foresaw Ideation (Idea Creation) but he also felt substances could help prime the mind for such moments of “sudden illumination”22

“The creation involves a period of conscious work, followed by a period of unconscious work. Conscious work is also necessary after the unconscious work, to put the unconscious results on a firm footing” Poincaré said, drawing the conclusion that mathematical creation cannot be mechanical. Many of the choices are based on grounds of symmetry, mathematical elegance, consistency with other areas of mathematics, and even aesthetics. Therefore, the unconscious is not simply a mechanical processor; “it is not purely automatic; it is capable of discernment; it has tact, delicacy; it knows how to choose, to divine. What do I say? It knows better how to divine than the conscious self, since it succeeds where that has failed. In a word, is not the subliminal self superior to the conscious self? ... Does it follow that the subliminal self, having divined by a delicate intuition that [certain] combinations would 22. French Polymath Henri Poincaré on How Creativity Works by Maria Popova, Brain Pickings, 2012


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be useful, has formed only these, or has it rather formed many others which were lacking in interest and have remained unconscious?21” What the unconscious presents to the conscious mind is not a full and complete argument or proof, but rather a “point of departure” from which the conscious mind can work out the argument in detail. The conscious mind is capable of the strict discipline and logical thinking, of which the unconscious is incapable.23

__________________ This second known Creative Process and the one that was taught to me at the Harrington College of Design is a model developed by Benjamin Bloom, called Bloom’s Taxonomy, which categorizes thinking skills and can represent the development phases of a project. The six Phases are: Knowledge, Comprehension, Application, Analysis, Synthesis and Evaluation. Robin Landa reinterprets these phases in an advertising context24. Phase 1 is about gaining knowledge by gathering information relative to the research or problem at hand. It is more of an overview and an orientation phase in which one meets the client and defines the project and client’s objectives, identify the audience, get to know the brand or client better through research and questions, and start scheduling a budget. In Phase 2, the creative starts to comprehend and grasp the meaning of the materials gathered, making use of the material in new and more immediate contexts through use of paraphrase, analogies and other forms of explanation. It is about making connections within the elements and categories found. This enables the person to start developing a Strategy; a conceptual plan that provides guidelines by acknowledging the brand’s positioning and aiming the advertising 23. The Foundations of Science” Henri Poincaré, Paris 1908, translated by G.B. Halstead. Found in Wayne State University archives. 24. Advertising by Design: Generating and Designing Creative Ideas Across Media, by Robin Landa, 2010


2.2.2 Bloom’s Taxonomy on critical and creative thinking

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to achieve differentiation, relevance and resonance. This phase in advertising results in a creative Brief, a written document outlining and strategizing a design project. During Phase 3, the traditional conceptual design stage as she calls it, the creative analyzes and then synthesizes the materials by combining ideas and making explicit/implicit connections between the various elements. She calls it the Ideation or Idea Creation phase, developing several viable concepts to present to the client. These are formulated through research, analysis, interpretation, inference, reflective and creative thinking, in order to formulate one or multiple meaningful messages that will be communicated to a targeted audience. Phases 4,5 and 6 are about evaluating the value of the ideas, first conceptually, in relation to the initial goals, and then practically, as designed, produced and implemented. Phase 4 is articulating the idea in visual form through Design. Usually an Art Director or creative advertiser first goes through thumbnail sketches, then roughs, then compositions which materialize and define the idea in order to find what works and what doesn’t, conceptually and visually. In phase 5 they bring the idea to finalization by implementing it on the right medium, sometimes this requires multiple steps to make sure the final result is right. In print for example, the choice of paper, printer and inc is to take into account, and in digital designs one might have to develop wire-frames or go to a professional web developer or other expert to make the product live in digital form and create the user experience. Finally, in phase 6, the solutions are deployed and put into effect which can lead to a debriefing and assessment of the overall result. This step allows the creative to take a step back and see the results and consequences of his solution.


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Overall, this process of critical and creative thinking includes a wide range of cognitive and intellectual skills needed to interpret, analyze, and evaluate a problem, and then to synthesize, evaluate, and explain in a logical response to what the solutions can be.

__________________

The third Creative Process I focused on was James Webb Young’s Technique for producing Ideas, circa 1939. James Young, the former Vice President of J Walter Thompson and one of the original Ad Men, developed one of the most popular approaches to creativity in advertising. He developed a five-step model of the creative process and commented in his book titled A Technique for Producing Idea: “The production of ideas is just as definite a process as the production of Fords; the production of ideas, too, runs an assembly line; in this production the mind follows an operative technique which can be learned and controlled, and that its effective use is just as much a matter of practice in the technique as in the effective use of any tool.”25 Young proposes two key principles for creating, n°1 that an idea is a new combination and n°2 that the ability to generate new combinations depends on the ability to see relationships between different elements. According him, this juxtaposition of elements creates a new way of looking at things, involving a mind shift and making you look at a problem from a different angle. The first step in his creation process is Immersion or Gathering of Raw Material. He talks about creating a pool of raw material and mental sources from which to build new combination in order to immerse yourself in the problem. He compares this part of the process as 25. A 5-Step Technique for Producing Ideas circa 1939, Brain Pickings, by Maria Popova, 2012


2.2.3 James Webb Young’s Technique for producing Ideas

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something like looking through a kaleidoscope in search of new patterns and possibilities through combinations. “Like in a Kaleidoscope, the greater the number of pieces of glass in it, the greater become the possibilities for new and striking combinations.” The second step is Digesting the Material; taking the information, working it over and wrestling with it in the mind. He describes as taking the gathered material and feeling them all over with the tentacles of the mind”, taking one fact and looking at it through different perspectives, then bringing in another fact and seeing how they fit together and on and on like a jigsaw puzzle. Step three is called Incubation or Unconscious Processing. It is described as putting the problem out of your conscious mind and turning the information over to the subconscious to do the work, making absolutely “no effort of a direct nature”. It allows the mind to wander and take a step back. It is only after this step that the mind can get to the fourth stage: Illumination, also known as the A-HA Moment. It is the birth of an idea, the phenomenon, “Eureka! I have it!” that usually comes when least expected. The final step in his process is: Idea meets Reality or Verification. He calls it “the cold, gray dawn of the morning after” when you have to study the idea to see if it still makes sense, meets the brief and solves the problem. Submitting it to criticism is important to get another perspective, if it fits all the requirements and has self-expanding qualities then you can start shaping the idea to practical usefulness.


28 2.2.4 Graham Wallace on The Art of Thought

This last process is very similar to Young’s process even though written thirteen years earlier in 1926. Indeed, in his book The Art Of Though, Graham Wallas, an English social psychologist and the co-founder of the London School of Economics, defines four stages in the creative process. His insights are based on personal observations and supported by accounts of famous inventors and polymaths. The four stages of the process as he sees it are: Preparation, Incubation, Illumination and Verification. The first stage , Preparation, implies readying the mind and preparing it to solve en identified problem by “investigating in all directions”26 . In this phase, one has to accumulate amounts of resources and information that can allow the brain to start planning and entering the right frame of mind. After this conscious research and making of connections, there comes the Incubation Phase which requires a break from the problem in order to let the unconscious process the information. This is very similar to Einstein’s theory of “combinatory play” which is the belief that creativity is combinatorial: Alive and awake to the world as we amass information that we combine and recombine, mostly unconsciously, into something “new”27. As Maria cites Wallas “Voluntary abstention from conscious thought on any problem may, itself, take two forms: the period of abstention may be spent either in conscious mental work on other problems, or in a relaxation from all conscious mental work. The first kind of Incubation economizes time, and is therefore often the better.” This was reiterated later by T.S. Eliot, Alexander Graham Bell and Lewis Carroll who saw value in this incubation technique.

26. The Art of Thought: Graham Wallas on the Four Stages of Creativity, 1926, Brain Pickings, by Maria Popova, 2012 27. How Einstein Thought: Why “Combinatory Play” Is the Secret of Genius by Maria Popova, 2012


2.3.1 Iain Cohen, Wexley School for Girls Agency

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In the third stage, Illumination, Wallas takes notes from Poincaré’s observations on the natural coming of the idea that the conscious self can not force. The Verification phase shares the conscious effort of the mind with phase one. It is about testing and reducing the found idea to something more precise and valid. He explains that none of these phases can exist without the other and that it is a whole mechanism, constantly in movement, that results in a finer, valid idea.

2.3 Art Directors illustrate the creative process today After establishing that there are basics and proven theories within the Creation Process, it is interesting to find that individuals have taken census of their own creative development and have personalized these processes to fit their own method of creation. In a book called The Creative Process Illustrated (how advertising’s big ideas are born), Glenn Griffin and Deborah Morrison interview and ask many of the most successful advertisers to explain their thought process. Sally Hogstead, speaker, brand innovations consultant describes the process comparing it to alchemy, transforming a lump of raw information into a golden idea. She sees this book as an object permitting us “ to stroll around as guests in the brains of the smartest creatives, learning exactly how their ideas are born.” 28

28. The Creative Process Illustrated (how advertising’s big ideas ar born) W. Glenn Griffin and Deborah Morrison, 2010


30 2.3.2 Danny Gregory, Mcgarrybowen

Iain Cohen

Co-Founder/Creative Director, Wexley School for Girls Agency, Seattle,WA After doing some great work at Hammerquist & Saffel and Wieden+ Kennedy for brands like Nike and K2, Iain Cohen and his creative partner Cal McAllister opened their own agency known for its huge personality and easy-going atmosphere. He explains his creative process as starting with an empty mind, pretending not to be at work so his thinking doesn’t feel work-related. He likes to brainstorm in stimulating places with motion and distractions, things to look at that develop fragments of ideas. As he researches the target audience he tries to engage in a type of conversation-thinking. He writes every little thing down and let’s his mind wander, then selects all the good ideas and see which one fits best. This is how he describes his process in visual form:

Danny Gregory

Managing Partner/Executive Creative Director, McGarrybowen, NY Danny Gregory was raised internationally, growing up in London, Pittsburgh, Australia and Pakistan. He supervises the Chase account at Mcgarrybowen and has worked on the Wall Street Journal, Crayola, Chevron and Verizon. He finds inspiration in everyday life and does as many activities as possible, enlarging his sources of inspiration. He is constantly brewing ideas in his mind and is working on a multitude of projects at once, resulting in sudden wake ups at 4am when an idea emerges. Here is how he describes his process in visual form.


2.3.3 Jim Haven, Creature Agency

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Jim Haven

Co-Founder/Creative Director, Creature, Seattle, WA After working for fifteen years in copy-writing in San Francisco, Seattle and Amsterdam, Jim Haven founded Creature in 2002. He has worked with Pacifico Beer, Nike, Starbucks, HBO, Porsche, The Wall Street Journal and more and has gained recognition in the Industry through publications such as Ad week, Advertising Age and the New York Times. He explains creativity in advertising as being a non-linear byproduct of thinking about something logically. It’s like flexing a muscle and then relaxing, the second action is where creativity usually comes. Efficiency and urgency are his greatest motivators. Here is how he describes his process in visual form:

Left: Danny Gregrories sketch of his creative process

Below: Jim Haven’s sketch of his creative process


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3. COFFEE AND COMMUNICATION The introduction of the Internet to the coffee culture added to its attractability. It allows coffeehouses to extend their reach as places of social interaction and central hubs for exchanging news and information29. It offers a new type of interaction in sync with our modern culture enabling virtual sociability, through a physical space. In her thesis on Coffee Culture, Catherine Tucker quotes Connery, 1997: ” The Internet operates with the social dynamism, challenges to the status quo, and disdain for authority that once characterized Europe’s early coffeehouses; thus the Internet acts as a virtual coffeehouse.” She sees it as an extension of their role as places for social interactions. 3.1 A Digital Coffee House A study on Millennial marketing based on Starbuck’s digital marketing shows that the brand is very close to this notion of digital coffee house. Jeff Fromm also known as the “Millennial Marketing Guy” uses Starbucks as an example to show how coffeehouses have adapted to the new technology and consumers it creates. According to his article on Why Starbucks is Still Number One With Millennials, Starbucks has become as of 2014, one the top ranked brands for Millennials and it is generating inspiration by other brands for more Millennial engagement. By going digital, offering rewards for participation and creating an environment where the Y generation actually wants to be with others face-to-face, it has developed a marketing strategy and communication style that is relate-able to them. The Starbucks Instagram account has more than 2 million followers and people are constantly tagging the coffee company in their posts30. Developing the Tweet-a-Coffee campaign in 2014 and the Starbucks app engages the Millennials to share coffee and connect with peers through social media and through the coffee company. Since over 70% of them have said that they will come back to a brand they love, the company takes advantage of this loyalty by engaging them and being a part of their lives constantly, offering them benefits like free music and app downloads for participation on the network. People can now even pay directly through the My Starbucks Rewards program on their phone 29. Coffee Culture: Local Experiences, Global Connections, Society, Class, and Taste, By Catherine M. Tucker 2011 30. Millenial Marketing Powered by Future cast, Why Starbucks is Still Number One With Millennials, Jeff Fromm, 2014


3.1.1 Coffee and Social Networks

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at the register. According to a study released by Cisco, 87% of Millennials look at video streaming in the office as a means of communication, faceto-face interactions between them becoming less common. The options of seating and environment created by Starbucks makes them feel part of the community, while still offering them a highly digitized space. Today, Starbucks has more than 20,00 stores in 61 countries and has become the largest coffeehouse company in the world. Starbucks lovers all around the world have an instant bond with each other that Director of Global Digital Marketing, Dan Beranek, defines as network branding. This explains how even though the notion of coffee houses as a network has always existed, coffeehouses have implemented themselves in social media in order to connect and personalize their service to the new generation of customers, putting them in direct contact with the brand and with each other.

In Steven Johnson’s Ted Talk: Where good ideas come from, 2010, he explores the notion of how coffee houses have become “liquid networks.” He talks about how the architecture of the space was and still is important in favoring a meeting place for people from different backgrounds and zones of expertise to explore new notions and conversations. His quest of finding “Where Good Ideas Come from” led him to look into what the physical space for creativity might look like, the ones that have engendered innovations through time. He was looking for repetitive patterns and signatures that resulted in innovation in order to develop an environment that would increase creativity. He talks about the vocabulary we use to describe moments of idea creation, like Flash, stroke, epiphany, Eureka moments and light-bulb, and how they share this assumption that an idea is a single thing. He argues that an idea is a network, a new idea is a new network of neurons firing at each other inside our brain, it’s a new configuration. It turns out that a lot of networks from the outside world imitate the network patterns of the internal network of the human brain31. Through an anecdote he explains how most of the time, great ideas are not due to new technology but to what is available to us and what surrounds us. He questions the way we picture deep thinking and concentration by showing Le Penseur sculpture by Rodin and other works of art in culture that reflect this action. He then shows a messy tavern scene by William Hogarth confirming that 31. TED Talks, Steven Johnson: Where good ideas come from, 2010


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chaotic environments were actually where big ideas happened created by unpredictable collisions. He jokes that this is what our offices should look like and that we should be developing more chaotic environments. Steven Johnson refers to Kevin Dunbar who went to multiple science labs around the world and videotaped everyone through every part of their workday, following them around while recording the conversations to find out exactly where the idea creation happened. When he looked at the tape, almost all of the important breakthrough ideas did not happen at the desk alone in the lab, they happened at the weekly meeting around the conference table where everyone shared their latest findings. It’s this type of environment, where you have lots of different ideas that are together, bouncing off each other and leads to innovation that he started calling the liquid network. He says creative types often don’t know their creative process or do not explain it in an objective way including time and space of enlightenment. Some of the most important innovations had very long incubation periods, he calls it the Slow Hunch. Darwin is a great example of this, in his autobiography he tells the story of the idea for coming up with natural selection as a classic Eureka moment, but not long ago a scholar by the name of Howard Grueber looked at Darwin’s notebooks from this period and found that Darwin actually had the full theory of natural selection for months before he had that epiphany. In a sense, he already had the idea and concept but was unable of fully thinking it yet. Often great ideas fade into view after long periods of time, the challenge is how to create environments to create ideas with such a long half-life? Some companies like Google have developed these types of hunch cultivating mechanisms which is key, but another thing is to allow people’s hunches to connect with other people’s. Steven Johnson talks about how much we value the protection of intellectual property, patenting everything that we have so that people have to come up with new innovations and keep producing and influencing culture in a forward way, but that we should spend more time connecting ideas rather than protecting them. Sometimes a person develops a small hunch and you never know how big an impact that small idea can have on other peoples hunches which can lead to huge innovations that the creators had not thought about.


3.2.1 Coffee as more than a product, an atmosphere

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3.2 Connecting people through Coffee and Creativity Even though coffee is a material substance, culture and history has infused it with social and symbolic meanings. In fact, consuming coffee can help someone find Identity, express value or affirm social ties32. Coffee has a specific bond with its consumer since becoming a local and global beverage because people can see it as “their own” and pick the one that fits them best. The Coffee Culture which refers to the ideas, practices, technology, meaning and numerous associations regarding coffee, can also be appropriated by the coffeehouses which define their “own coffee culture” like Starbucks’ language for sizes for example. The changes in the coffee house have developed a coffee culture on a local and a global base, one particularity is that there are many examples of them being used as places for artists and people to interact and come up with new ideas. In Anthony Mc Cosker’s article on café Space, Communication, Creativity and Materialism, he makes a reference to a historical moment in the mid-twentieth century illustrating this last phase in the evolution of the relationship between café space, communication and creativity. According to him, the Second World War devastation across Europe resulted in a rebuilding more invested in the arts, notably in musical education. He focuses on a Polish composer by the name of Krzysztof Penderecki known for his avant-garde piece Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima (1960), his Polymorphia (1961), and St Luke Passion (1963-66), all of which used new compositional and notation techniques. In short, this man who was part of the generation of composers participating and benefiting of the early music festivals of the late 1950’s, ended up having to work in a café to get away from his wife’s constant piano playing and the school’s nonstop intrusion of instrumental sounds. Due to the café’s small table surface, he had to develop a new notation technique, he invented a special kind of notation which allowed him to write a piece for 52 instruments, like Threnody, on one small piece of paper. He talks about searching for new sounds and incorporating them into some of his compositions while composing in café Jama Michalika, like the sound of a passing tram in Threnody for example or the multiple blending of sounds which is how he came up with the name “Polymorphia”. The café in Penderecki’s recollections both constrains his ability to compose 32. M/C Journal, Vol. 15, No. 2 (2012), Café Space, Communication, Creativity, and Materialism, Anthony McCosker, Rowan Wilken.


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freely (a creative activity that normally requires ample flat surface), but also facilitates the invention of a new language for composition, one able to accommodate the small space of the café table. The relationship between this space and creativity is also developed by Fitch in The Grand Literary Cafés, 2011, “The attraction of the café for the writer”, Fitch argues, “is that seeming tension between the intimate circle of privacy in a comfortable room, on the one hand, and the flow of information all around on the other”33. He explains that in this post-war time in Europe, the space of the café itself becomes vital for individual cultural production by confronting the artist to the social life of the city.

example of coworking space with intregrated coffee house: 1871, Merchandise Mart, Chicago

According to a study published in the Journal of Consumer Research exploring the effects of ambient noise on Creative Cognition, those who worked in moderately noisy environments with sound levels like the average bustling cafe (about 70 decibels) scored higher on the creativity tests and were also rated as more innovative by other participants. In this study, researchers asked 300 participants to complete mental exercises like word association games and dreaming up as many ways as possible to use a brick while in environments that were either totally silent, moderately buzzing or straight up loud34. The study adds to research suggesting that small doses of distraction, including hard-to-read fonts, prompt the mind to work at a more abstract level, which is also a more creative level. Anthony McCosker in his article, Café Space, Communication, Creativity, and Materialism, concludes that in cultural creative outputs, the essential factor is found in the material conditions in which they are formed and how these material conditions are organized. As explained in a study by Packer and Crofts Wiley, “As infrastructure, space, technology, and the body have become the focus, there has been a move that situates communication and culture within a physical and corporeal landscape”. This points out that language and communication today are seen through the places in which they occur the most. The author of this article concludes his research by analyzing that the choices made in the physical layout of the café, it’s design, form and layout of the tables, the fact that the space can be used both for individual use as well as social encounters, and the beverage sold there which stimulates and influences the body, can be perceived as facilitators for communication and creativity. 33.The Grand Literary Cafés of Europe by Noel Riley Fitch, Andrew Midgley 34. Is Noise Always Bad? Exploring the Effects of Ambient Noise on Creative Cognition, 2012, Ravi Mehta, Rui (Juliet) Zhu, Amar Cheema 35. Communication Matters: Materialist Approaches to Media, Mobility and Networks, edited by Jeremy Packer, Stephen B. Crofts Wiley, 2013


3.2.2 Coffee as a creative tool in future education methods

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This perception of the coffee space as a creative environment is gradually making it’s way in education and other work spaces. Stephen T. Gordon, lawyer and futurist brings to the attention that in the USA, the rise of tuition cost has outpaced inflation for years and that the institutions are suffering in favor of free online programs like MITx36. MIT is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a research university founded in 1861, “dedicated to advancing knowledge and educating students in science, technology and other areas of scholarships serving the future of the nation and the world in the 21st century” as they describe it on their website. MITx is MIT’s new online certificate program as of 2012, enabling those looking to access MIT classes cheaper, through online interactive learning platforms. A fellow speculist blogger Phil Bowermaster thought this sounded like college as a giant coffee-shop, student-directed towards the job market aimed for. Gordon calls it “coffeeshopication” and says that due to the fact that most work functions can be done from a single laptop computer, the office has become just a physical space where the client can find you and away from home. Like in education, the workplace will become more flexible. He states: “Groups for one project will form and then disband and then reform with new members for the next project. What will that workplace look like? Probably closer to Starbucks than a cubicle.”37 The coffee shop feel in the workplace inspired a group to launch a website called Coffitivity, bringing the coffeehouse atmosphere to your desk by replicating the sounds and chatter of a coffee-shop in order to create the right level of background noise to stimulate creativity. Anahad O’Connor writes about this free website in her article38, it started when one member of the team, Justin Kauszler, noticed that when returning to his regular work space, his productivity went down. When Mr. Kauszler’s boss shot down his request to leave the office and work from a coffee shop, he and his colleagues decided that they would bring their favorite coffeehouses to their computers. According to Mr Callwood, one of the partners, since March 4th 2013, “traffic has exploded, Seoul, Korea, is our top user city. New York City is second, followed by London, L.A. and Chicago.” They have now created an app adding new soundtracks tailored to specific countries.

36. The coffeeshop is the future of...well, everything, Gigaom, by Jessica Stillman, 2012 37. In the Future Everything Will Be A Coffee Shop, The Speculist, Stephen Gordon, 2011. 38. How the Hum of a Coffee Shop Can Boost Creativity, The New York Times, by Anahad O’Connor 2013


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Currently, in Paris, the advertising and creative agency Marcel, is in the process of opening the Café Marcel for 3 days, the 16th, 17th, 18th of July, helping young entrepreneurs by creating an “idea bar” giving free advice and an open space for new businesses and anyone else who is interested39. This idea, according to their facebook event page, was brought on by a project still funding on KissKissBankBank called “La Jeune Rue” created by the airbnb of pop up stores in Paris, HopShop.40 From the 4th to the 18th of July, designers and creators will be able to set up temporary shops Rue de Verbois 75003 which has a lot of closed and bankrupt businesses in order to liberate creativity inside the community and tell the stories that come from the experience.

These meeting and co-working spaces aiming for innovation by connecting people are becoming more frequently used by businesses and research groups but also seeking attraction from art institutions like the Bozar at Palais des Beaux Arts or the Hisk Café, in Brussels. By introducing the notion of café and discussion into a physical space, they feel that they are making relationships between artists and visitors more natural and comfortable, they are bringing both worlds together through something familiar and relaxing like the atmosphere of the café.41 They are using this space to conduct meetings, events and other activities, an external place that is still linked to the museum, giving the visitors yet another option and experience to connect with it and with each other.

39. SaveTheDate, Inauguration du Café Marcel, Facebook Event, July 16th 2015, Agence Marcel 40. KissKissBankBank, Et hop, une jeune rue ! HopShop, 2015 41. Art Brussels Exposants 2015,OTHERS, HISK Cafe, Institut supérieur des Beaux-Arts et Arts Visuels


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II HYPOTHESES AND STUDY CASE

1. HYPOTHESES 1.1 Through the evolution of technologies and new types of communication, the coffee shop has gone from it’s primary function of social environment to this notion of innovation hub favorable to creative thinking. As seen through my research, coffee-shops have always been social environments that bring people together in a physical space that is not work or home, where they are free to discuss and exchange ideas in a casual atmosphere. At first, the personalized aspect of the coffeehouse was through the type of people it attracted in terms of their function or job, now it is through the choice of beverage they buy or the values they stand for. The coffee shop’s role as a social environment and a place for debate and connection between people has not changed, but the way it has adapted to how people communicate is a reflection of the evolution of our communication techniques. Due to the integration of Niche Marketing in the 1970’s, coffee houses have constantly kept up with creating an experience and atmosphere relate-able to their clientele. The introduction of the Internet has given them more options and activities to connect with their customers and has developed a more diverse experience within the coffeehouse. There are so many types of individuals that go there that they had to make sure the experience


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offered something for each one. This is how the coffeehouse today has not only kept this notion of social environment, but one of personal working environment as well. As Pendergrast states, it is a place where someone can be alone and still surrounded by people, which gives that person a sense of belonging to a community. Everything inside a coffeehouse today, from how the space is thought out, to the products it serves, participates in the brand experience for the consumer and how they relate to it and with each other because of it. New technologies have exacerbated this by enabling more connection and personalized approaches to how the brand communicates with the new generations. What we see today, is that, not only have coffee-shops created new ways of communicating with people because they now interact differently with each other, but that there is a coffee-shop culture which brings this idea of a social, casual, environment outside of coffee brands and into educational and work spaces. The object of this hypothesis is to show how this coffee shop environment and the way people interact and use these spaces has been implemented in our daily lives, not only in coffee shops but in many disciplines involving communication and culture in order to favor innovation and new creative solutions.

1.2 Art Directors and their creative process can be linked with the process of coffee. The studies on the relationship between coffee and creativity result in an overall belief that the influence of coffee on one’s creative endeavors help gain focus and productivity but that it is mostly the environment we work in; the noise levels and distractions that affect one’s ability to make new connections resulting in an innovative idea. After studying the process of making coffee, from the plant to the cup, and studying multiple approaches of the creative process, I found that there were similarities and that linking the two might be a more thorough and relate-able way to explain the creative process, more specifically one of a creative advertiser like me. In order to verify these hypotheses, I proceeded to interview people from different creative fields and conducted an online survey focusing on their own creative processes and experience of the coffee culture.


2.1.1 Interview, coffee houses as branded Environments

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2. INTERVIEWS 2.1 Mr. Tom Marquardt Branded Environments Specialist, Founder of Marquardt+ Design Collaboratives, Chicago IL I met with Tom Marquardt in the Merchandise Mart offices where he was working on a big project called NEOCON, which is the commercial interiors industry’s most important annual event in Chicago— bringing together the right people, the best products, and the most innovative ideas. I wanted to get the perspective of a specialist of branded environments to get his take on the way coffee shops are arranged and what purpose comes out of it. He had a lot to say about this subject, first the fact that coffeehouses have evolved from small local brands to the giants like Starbucks and that it is a repetitive process. The smaller brands of today could well become the giants of tomorrow, but the fact is that today you either want coffee fast and go to these big chains or you want a comfort or a type of second-home feel that these smaller brands have. Everything in these places is thought out and reflects the function of the environment. What is interesting is that Starbucks for example, has set up it’s furniture to enable multiple experiences that adapt to the consumer. They have multiplied the options, from the seating arrangements to the food items they present, and that creates more choices that can relate to more customers. He made a very interesting statement: “The very nature of social media and what’s ironic about their stores is that we carry our technology in with us, people go in these social environments but then go back into their technology so are they in fact interacting? There is a lack in communication today maybe because people have less face to face interactions, these environments provide a place for these people that are almost isolated by their technology, people working from home, traveling.. There is a human need that these places provide to be with other people, even if they are not directly interacting. “


43 2.2.1 Creative Process of an associate creative Director in Agency

2.2 Mr. Eric Reagan, Leo Burnett Chicago Associate Creative Director, Leo Burnett, Chicago IL I met with Eric at the Starbucks inside the Leo Burnett building to get more insight on the creative process from a professional Creative working in an Agency. We discussed over a cup of coffee how he felt about his process and the way the agency deals with creating an open space that allows that process. I knew from having visited the offices that there was a coffee area but I had no idea they had installed multiple spaces, ranging from very informal couches to formal meeting rooms that created second offices and communal areas for the employees. For Eric, going to grab a coffee out of the office is a way to let his mind loose, take a break from his computer screen and get a fresh start on his ideas whereas grabbing a coffee at the office is a way to ask someone’s opinion on a project or interact with the rest of the employees. As he explained, the first part of his process is setting up, then searching and brainstorming he does alone with music, in his own zone, and when he’s almost set on an idea and has done multiple variations, that’s when he reaches out to other people. It was during our conversation on his step by step process that I realized that the little things, like setting up your desk and shutting off your browser are very much part of the creative process, not just the sketching and developing. An agency has it’s own process, so not only do you have to follow yours but you have to adapt it to the agency, depending on whether it respects your creative process it can also adapt to your needs like for example, setting up these little areas to socialize and create a more comfortable environment.

2.3 Mr. Robert Bertolini Freelance Designer, George IV Design Collaboration, Chicago IL What I found most interesting about Robert is that he’s seen both sides of the advertising industry having started in the business over 30 years ago. He really has his own take on how he likes to think and resolve a problem, for him there are no specific steps to follow, it is more about a feeling or an emotion. Of course he follows the different technical approaches, sketching first than on the computer, but he does not


2.3.1 Creative Process of an Art Director in Freelance

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believe that it’s that mechanical of a process, for him it is all based on emotion, the way he sees the product, the way the client sees it and the way he wants the consumer to see it. Like Eric he likes to work by himself, secluded during the conception part and only asks for aesthetic feedback once he has the idea down. But unlike Eric, the process is not as long because he doesn’t have to go through multiple validations of the agency hierarchy and he can choose the clients he works with. He sees coffee as part of his creative process and a boost in his creativity but does not relate to the coffee shops, he sees them more as an ego seen and be seen type of place. He says it is probably due to growing up in the suburbs where coffee shops are not as frequent. It is a very urban type of place, almost like a you go there when you have no where else to go. He is convinced that even though the creative process can be taught, it is mostly instinctive and evolves through personal experience. In this evolution, the process and the way we work is not only influenced by the environment e work in but also by the people. He finished the discussion by telling me about when he went back to work for Leo Burnett after a sabbatical and how everything had changed and the people were so much more competitive than he remembered. As we were talking we realized that might be due to the evolution of his process and how he changed and was not that competitive person anymore and that is probably why he felt so out of place. He found his path in freelance where he could have his own process and develop it further, without the constraints of the agency hierarchy.

2.4 Mr. Jonathan Sangster Design Educator at the Harrington College of Design, Chicago I met with Jonathan Sangster in the Harrington College library and had not yet thought to ask an educator about the way they teach the creative process. I knew he had gotten an Innovation Award recently and therefore jumped on the occasion and asked him to reply to the set of questions I had put together. According to him, the base of the creative process needs to be taught but then it usually evolves and becomes more personal. He was intrigued by this project and says it might inspire him to develop is teaching methods. As he explains through the interview, as a creative you are always inspired by something exterior that then links


45 2.4.1 Creative Process of a Creative Educator

with ideas you might already have. Since Comparing and sorting are the biggest part of his process he says comparing with another process might be a great way to explain the creative approach. __________________ These interviews were very beneficial to me and my research and brought forth even more questions. What I found the most interesting was that the interviews became more of a discussion, a dialogue and we usually ended up comparing our creative process and finding out more about ourselves as we talked. I think this reflects this conversation type of atmosphere one can have when grabbing a coffee with someone; there is no pressure, no right or wrong, you are just having a discussion and learning more about the perception of others. All of them seemed intrigued by this subject and were really involved in the discussion. When explaining their individual creative process to me, it felt as though they were discovering it and noticed the little rituals they had not realized where part of the process. It was very interesting to see how they all saw it differently and yet very much alike, same thing with the interpretation of the coffee process sketch I showed them. I think it was great to have the opinion of professionals, but what about the students who are learning this process now a days? What would they think about it?


3.2 Survey and analysis

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3. CASE STUDY 3.1 Introduction Since my study is not based on one specific area in the world, I decided to use social media in order to reach a maximum number of people that would be representative of a global culture. Most of the people who answered my study reside in the USA and in France. My goal was to verify that coffee is indeed a part of people’s creative process and to measure how much of the population analyzed, has a creative process similar to the ones I have studied. I also wanted to see whether the creative part of the studied personalities could help me verify this association of the coffeehouse as a social environment and as an enabler for creativity. All of the responses to the survey are available in the appendix section of this document. 3.2 Survey and analysis

The Survey: “Coffee coffee coffee, a delectable brew that seems to hold such a big place in our lives and in the history of communication. Thank you for clicking and helping me measure it’s influence on the way we think and interact with the world around us. The object of my thesis is to find out “How the process of making coffee is similar to the creative process in Advertising and what it says about communication today “. This will only take a few minutes, just about the time of a coffee break, how fitting is that!” This study was sent out trough Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and through e-mail chains in order to reach a maximum of different personalities and to get a global view of how people see and consume coffee on one hand, and on the other hand, how they view their creative process and if there is an association there with the coffee-shop and coffee culture. You can find the full results in the Appendix portion of this document. The results of the study show that on a base of 118 people interviewed, both from the USA and France, 99 of them consider themselves creative individuals, 83 of them actually working in a creative field. 53% of the people interviewed are 18 to 25 years old and are part of the millennial generation. 99 of them are conscious that they have a ritual before


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getting to work, and 58 of them say it includes coffee. When asked how they deal with being creatively stuck on an idea, out of a 118 people, 83 answered that they usually take a break or step away from the project at hand temporarily. 85% of them agree with the fact that the environment they work in affects the quality of their work. Out of everyone who answered this survey, 50% enjoy working in a social environment, 14% like to have the opportunity of a social and personal environment, and 34% like to work alone. Concerning their opinion on working inside a coffee-shop, only 27% have had the experience but about 50% of all who answered see a value in it. Out of the 68 answers for why they would or have worked there, 14 people said it was an energizing and productive environment to work in, finding it relaxing, comforting to have some noise around them and liking the energy and dynamism found in these spaces. Some people highlighted the fact that there is free wifi there and answered that it was convenient when you are on-the-go or don’t have a place to meet that works for everybody. 16 of the people who answered worked there mostly for the coffee or because they wanted one and wanted to be outside of work or home. Finally, I was pleased to find that 64% of the people in this study have a notion of the creative process. There were 56 conclusive answers which showed that 47 thought of it as step by step process, 6 thought it was too personal to explain, and 3 of them said it was more about the ritual before starting to work. 3.3 Conclusion of study From this study, I got a global feeling and approach to how people relate to coffee and coffee-shops. What I can conclude from the data I collected is that a majority see themselves as being creative, even if they don’t work in a creative field. They are conscious that they have a process when solving a problem and that this process is both personal as they each have their take on it but that in general they have a step by step approach which starts with research, identifying the problem, experiment with different solutions, take a step back if needed and then filter out the good from the bad in order to start formulating the final product. In this way they follow a similar process to the ones explained through the different theories I studied, most of them talk about this incubation process of taking a break to let the idea sink in and follow a research and filtering process while creating. The majority


3.3 Conclusion of study

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are not opposed to working in a coffeehouse environment, most of the people who have not or did not have an opinion about it is because they have not had the opportunity to work there. I think this is due to the fact that in the USA, coffee-shops are more present, the cafés in Paris have the same function but often don’t offer free wifi or electric outlets at disposal. It could also be due to where someone lives as coffeehouses are more present in urban environments. I thought it was interesting to see that the majority of the people in the study likes to work in a social environment with a dynamic present around them. Overall, the responses I have gotten through this study have a positive reaction to how they view coffee and the coffee atmosphere, they are aware of a process they follow while creating and are favorable to social environments to enable connections and new ideas to form.

4. VALIDATION OF HYPOTHESES The interviews I conducted in relation to this study and the results I got from it have brought me to several conclusions. I have analyzed all of the information collected and found that the interviews and research from the Literary Review were most helpful to answer both my hypothesis and that the study conducted helped me support this research. In order to validate the fact that it is through the evolution of technologies and new types of communication, that the coffee shop has gone from it’s primary function of social environment to this notion of innovation hub, I studied my overall research and found that it is actually because technologies and coffeehouses evolved simultaneously that a connection can be made between these spaces and innovation. Tom Marquardt supported this by stating: “maybe technology evolved and changed the nature of Interior Design, but maybe it’s the innovations in Interior Design that influenced new technologies. If you think of the generations that engage or are part of the coffee houses as they’ve developed as chains, those are the same people that have changed or took part in the new technology revolution and evolution that’s occurred, like portable computers because people are not just at home or at work, they’re in these locations.” A good example of how coffee itself took part in a major innovation is the invention of the first web-cam. According to an


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article by BBC news, the first web-cam was actually invented in order to grab images, three times a minute, of a coffee pot. In 1991, a group of researchers from the University of Cambridge wrote software that would allow them to run images from the camera onto their internal computer network. The goal at the time was only to be able to check if the coffee pot was empty or full so that they would not have to go check in the main computer lab called the Trojan room, getting up from their seat to find an empty pot. This simple innovation was only built for one purpose at first, but of course this single idea inspired another researcher in 1993 to build a script around the captured images and projected the footage onto the world wide web; a monumental breakthrough which started because of a coffee pot. They only turned off the web-cam 10 years later; “it had gone from being a wacky new idea, to a novelty that a reasonable number of people knew about, to a widely viewed icon of the early web, to a historic artifact, and then to something that people were mourning over when it was no longer there,”42 concludes Dr Stafford-Fraser. I found that the relationship between the coffeehouse and innovation can be seen through this need for people to facilitate their work by using new technologies and metaphorically breaking the physical walls of the office space. This is seen through all the new co-working spaces made available throughout the world. I actually went to the top floor of the Merchandise Mart after my interview with Tom Marquardt, indeed finding one of those spaces, with an integrated coffee shop. This “digital incubator” as Tom called it, is called 1871, it is an open space that individuals can rent zones in and work there. It is huge and swarming with people either working in groups or by themselves, like their personal offices but open and next to one another. Interestingly enough, there is a coffee shop at the entrance which almost seems part of the space. They are creating an incubator to get businesses to interact, a café experience because it’s going to facilitate cross connections. They are using the brand as the incubator. In France there is the Welcome city Lab in the Montparnasse tower that works the same way and these work incubators are becoming more and more frequent. It’s a strategy, almost manipulative to create social interactions within the work experience and initiate connections and innovations B2B (business to business).

42. BBC News, How the world’s first webcam made a coffee pot famous By Rebecca Kesby, 2012


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I think that we can see this evolution of the coffeehouse atmosphere towards the notion of innovation hubs through the growing number of co-working spaces, open-spaces, and other work environments like creative advertising agencies or art establishments, that emphasize he importance of human relation through the way they construct their space. As Steven Johnson explains and as my study shows, people want to have the possibility of choosing and altering between a social environment and one where they can be totally focused; these spaces offer both and therefore allow connections to be made between people and ideas which in turn enables innovation. __________________

While conducting my interview and reviewing the data collected by my survey, I was pleased to find many similarities between the research I had done on the way coffee is processed and the way they viewed their own creative processes. I found that in my literary review, most theories relating to the creative process only focused on the conceptional part of creating an idea or message, but that most people in my study focused more on the production part and the many steps in takes to bring that idea to realization. I found that when combining both the conceptual steps and the production steps, it could indeed be associated with the entire growth process of coffee. I analyzed the steps further, comparing and identifying the major phases in both fields to see how the relationships could form. It is undeniable that the creative process is personal for everyone, but I did notice that in general, there are big steps on which they all agreed upon. I will proceed to explain the important steps in the creative process in relation to the process of the coffee plant, from searching the idea to launching it and from bean to cup. In the conceptual stage, the theories studied in the Literary review seem to agree on the different steps to follow in order to develop a “big Ideaâ€?. James Young and Wallace share this process of gathering materials first, then combining the elements and letting the unconscious step in for an incubation period. Then, they agree, and PoincarĂŠ as well, that there is an illumination phase, or A-Ha moment, where a notion of the


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idea is formed. Their final step in the creation process is verification or when the idea meets reality. Robin Landa in Advertising by Design, and the creative experts I interviewed, follow these same steps but include the production stages and help us understand it from an advertising and marketing perspective. When starting out on a project, you want to set up the right environment in which it will grow the best. The farmers do this for the plant, as we do with our routine or the place where we feel most productive. This environment will enable you to gather a multitude of materials and combine them to create a pool of new informations to choose from. This phase includes setting up the right environment, creating a new variety of material to create the best product, and planting the seed. Once this seed of new information is planted and you have started combining ideas through brainstorming, the idea needs time to grow. This is the incubation period, a break, a time where the unconscious works and continues combining elements while you are drinking your coffee or working on another project. The idea will come up in this A-ha moment as James Young calls it, where the idea flourishes and starts to make sense. It is time to harvest the cherries and write it all down, to start translating this idea and selectively picking out the ones that fit the requirements, taking in consideration, quality, relate-ability of the message. The selection phase in processing, drying and milling the green beans, starting from the base of the idea, the sketches and thumbnails to developing and perfecting it. This selection process results in the verification phase, approval from the client. If the concept is approved then it is ready for production, if it is not, you rethink it, refine the idea, the bean. The approved composition or concept is ready for production, this message will need to be consumable and seen through different platforms. It is in this roasting stage that the bean gets it’s brown color and aroma, comparing it to the evolution of the idea, this is where the Art Director or creative chooses the right medium and balance of tools to get the best result. For example, if the composition is to be printed, one has to take into account what paper, what ink, and what type of printer (offset, digital..). If the project is for a digital platform, you might need


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to create wire-frames and/or bring in a Web developer. This production stage includes multiple steps to turn the initial concept into visual form or physicality. These steps from Roasting the bean to grinding and brewing it involve a multitude of choice in terms of tools and utensils used, the same goes for the production stage, it is the correct balance of good product and right choice of tool that will result in a successful experience by the consumer. Finally, the brew, the files, the campaign or print is ready for launch. Sometimes agencies decide to keep it on the heat and create a teaser, that could be the smell of the coffee, or they share and serve it right away. This liquefied idea, this one message or combination of messages, can be distributed across multiple platforms, served in different cups. The personalization aspect can still be found through in the different ways the message is adapted to the customer, where he is targeted and how, this could reflect his usage of certain media channels or his preference in coffee for example. In conclusion, even though the overall process can be adapted to an individual’s perspective, these are the main steps one would follow. Most of the creatives in my study know of the creative process and have been taught one of the theories at one point, but most have adapted it through experience in the field, through projects, further developing their idea pool and access to new idea combinations. My goal in analyzing this resemblance in a natural process such as coffee and a creative work process is to make something that is abstract to most, something relate-able that anyone can understand. Not only has this validated my second hypotheses, but I think it has resulted in a new view of the step by step process which includes, not only the conceptual phase, but the production phase as well.


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III RECOMMENDATIONS

1. VISUAL RECOMMENDATION The creative process as it was taught to me, helped set the basics of how to proceed when developing a concept from start to finish, but sometimes it is easy to lose track of what step you are on or focus too much on one. As a visual person, I find that I learn and understand information faster when it is shown to me in visual form. An illustration, a graph, an info-graphic and other visual formats, can help highlight the important facts and data, synthesizing a mass of information into a simpler form that is understandable by everyone. Through my research, I found that most people working in a creative field know that there is a step by step process that the mind follows while bringing an idea to realization, but most are not certain what the steps are or have their own personal way of adapting it to their lifestyle. My visual recommendation of how the creative process can be explained uses the information I have gathered throughout my thesis and is a visual representation of it through the process of coffee. The validation of my hypothesis supported the notion that coffee and its environment


1.1 A New way of teaching the creative process

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is in fact representative of a global communication and a facilitator to innovation. It is also a product that involves a lot manual labor and people throughout the process, which creates connections not only between people in urban places but also between many different countries. Finally coffee is so present in our daily life that people can easily relate to it and have a familiarity with it. By showing the process of coffee visually and associating the different steps with the creative process, including both the conceptual and production stage, I want to help visualize and make it memorable, easier to comprehend. The goal is to make something as complex and flexible as one’s creative process, into something that anyone could understand, by association with something they already know. Obviously there is not one way to show all of the steps implicated throughout idea creation, but I find that there are not many visual representations of it and that most do not include both the conceptual phase and production phase. Since creative thinkers, and especially in advertising, are usually more visual people, I think that a visual representation when learning it will help them remember it more easily. Therefore, not only is this visual representation, a new way of learning about the creative process, it can be useful in educating both a creative or a non creative person as it can be understood by both through the assimilation with coffee. In this view, it is not really about the coffee itself as a beverage but more about the notion of a global product representative of communication, familiar to everyone, a common universal base. The use of realistic imagery and emoji’s in this visual form of explanation, reflect both a physicality and virtuality in communication, which can be associated with the different formats like print and digital communication, as well as the different phases. This visual explanation helps show the relationships between what forms a concept and how it is materialized. I find that it was not until I had put the explanation of the creative process and its affiliation to coffee in visual form, that I could define the phases more clearly. This Visual representation of the creative process through coffee can become a universal base on how to explain it to future students or people interested in understanding it without going through all the different textbook theories. It is a faster, more modern way of explaining the process and can be adapted to any language as the common factor and visual representation of coffee is universal.


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2. STRATEGIC RECOMMENDATION My strategic recommendation on how to create a favorable environment to learning and application the creative process, is to aim at an open space where multiple environments can take place; a space where one can choose to work in solitary mode while still having the option to be social and interact with others. There needs to be multiple seating arrangements and options to how the space is divided so that it’s function can evolve with its visitors. I believe that it is not only the material space that needs to be more flexible, but also the way we approach it. In education for example, and I have seen this through personal experience in USA educational methods, the teaching methods could become more of a discussion between someone who has acquired more knowledge and experience, in this case a teacher, and a student, one whose idea toolbox is not as vast. It is the connections and the openness in discussion, although still bound to a specific curriculum, that will enable connections and new ideas to form spontaneously. I think it is important to keep a certain rigor, a constant flow of information which the curriculum agrees upon, but I do think that we have to implement a discussion part to our learning methods, especially in creative fields like Design and Advertising. It is this environment my thesis refers to as a coffee house environment, a place that feels familiar and casual where people can be open about their views while discovering new perspectives, a place in which they can use the space as they see fit, for discussion as well as intense focus.


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IV APPENDIX

FULL INTERVIEWS Mr. Tom Marquardt Branded Environments Specialist, Founder of Marquardt+ Chicago 1. How would you explain the notion of Branded Environment? Summing it up it is an experiential manifestation of a brand into a physical space. The process of creating a branded environment is much more in depth than Interior Design and Retail Design. We have to take into account a brand strategy before just the physical necessities. What to feel, to do, how to move, what kind of action do you want to initiate as a brand? It is about the choices we make to create the experience. 2. If I told you that coffee houses used to be a meeting point and usually the starting point of many revolutions and innovations throughout history, would you say that is still true today? I think the concept that Starbucks, Intelligentsia and other major com-


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panies are based on a movement that occurred in the North-West Seattle and New York Post-war, originally based in Europe. It brought back to the concept of coffee as a social interaction, based on a kind of youth alternative market and by engaging that it brought coffee as less of a product and more towards a lifestyle. It was successful by the look of how much money one person will pay for a cup of coffee. I’m not much of a coffee drinker but according to some people the very affordable coffee at Dunk-in Donuts is quite good, but you won’t get that same brand experience. I think it has expanded now, the local artisanal chains come out as alternative thinking, have a sensibility about them, Caribou for example, it creates more of a meeting place where people can feel like they are in their living room, a type of second home. That’s part of the lifestyle Identity. 4. Can you give examples of how branded Environments have changed through time, due to technology for example? We could say in America that it’s a kind of cart or horse issue, which is coming first, maybe technology evolved and changed the nature of Interior Design, but maybe it’s the innovations in Interior Design that influenced new technologies. If you think of the generations that engage or are part of the coffee houses as they’ve developed as chains, those are the same people that have change or took part in the new technology revolution and evolution that’s occurred, like portable computers because people are not just at home or at work, they’re in these locations and the reason why they have become social hubs. It puts people in this context of interacting digitally, people sit at Starbucks whole afternoons and work. It’s kind of odd, but that’s what people do. 5. Would you say that Starbucks as a branded environment based on personalization reflects today’s communication? I think what is interesting in those big chains as they’ve evolved, as Starbucks has evolved, is that they are starting to re-brand and redesign they’re stores. You look at Caribou for example, the whole feel and reference is about the lodge, the log cabin, the cozy furniture, and then you look at Starbucks and it still has that natural feel but it’s become so branded that they even sell they’re own music, the one that plays in the store. The idea is this kind of lounge feel, reinforcement of the music which became part of their experience. Technology in a way helped them create musical tracks so the people could take the Starbucks experience


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home which was interesting. So many companies, especially those that have multiple locations are starting to do what’s called Naturalization through Localization whereas other brands try to keep a very consistent atmosphere regardless of where you go. Starbucks is such a great example of that worldwide. Those local alternatives like Bow trust or Caribou have this lifestyle branding too with a stronger point of view which they can afford, because, they are not a chain. These very alternative coffee houses based on a very found object/vintage industrial cliché have a more intriguing feel, It’s funny because that’s how Starbucks started. Many of these coffee houses, like Intelligentsia are very people-watching designs,kind of like the café design in Paris, this whole idea of people the seats facing the street is to watch everyone or be watched. I don’t think Starbucks does that, for the most part your internally directed, it’s the way the furniture is put out, the warm colors referencing home. They even add in some of the modern stores a glass panel which segregates the “get up and get the coffee and get out” people from the “coming into the store” people. They probably make a lot more money because they have a choice of space or way to live the experience, they have multiple experiences available in a way. In the same way they have options with their food you can go to a Starbucks and not have coffee but still live the experience. In a social media way, you can reference Starbucks to the Internet Café concept which has been around forever because that’s when people didn’t have laptops. The very nature of social media and what’s ironic about their stores is that we carry our technology in with us, people go in these social environments but then go back into their technology so are they in fact interacting? There is a lack in communication today maybe because people have less face to face interactions, these environments provide a place for these people that are almost isolated by their technology, people working from home, traveling, there is a human need that these places provide to be with other people, even if they are not directly interacting. They’re are also still people interacting and socializing but mostly I see people doing their own thing, they still interact because the furniture enables that. The people that designed these spaces either allow people to support and interact and may even use the space to collaborate but still keeping that possibility to be by yourself. The more informal the space the more it creates this comfortable feel.


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6. Can you give examples of public Branded Environments that focus on social interactions and workability? Usually that concerns spaces that are part of Hospitality or has a hospitality component. That is becoming a part of a lot of brands, hotels, retail. It is very common for example in the hotel industry to create a side hospitality component like a bar or cafe or restaurant where people can go, be a part of the hotel experience but not feel like they are, and can still have that social possibility. It’s built for people that are local and international, belaying their brand and opening it up to multiple functions to touch a wider audience. Airports as well are becoming more and more amenities based on people due to layovers, waiting times, so many private stunning lounges that are designed for interaction, digital work, business, waiting, resting, creating an experience that expands the brand. Right here in this building on the top floor is a digital incubator called 1871, a space where individuals rent zone space and work there. It is huge and swarming with people either working in groups or by themselves, like their personal offices but open and next to one another. Interestingly enough, there is an Intelligentsia, almost part of the space when you enter. They are creating an incubator to get businesses to interact, a café experience because it’s going to facilitate cross connections. They are using the brand as the incubator. In France there is the Welcome city Lab in the Montparnasse tower that works the same way and these work incubators are becoming more and more frequent. It’s a strategy, almost manipulative to create social interactions within the work experience and initiate connections and innovations B2B. 7. What type of public environments reflect communication and social interactions the best today? I think it is very brand driven, there is a continuity of an interactive space, the French café concept, see and be seen, the secondary home concept, makes people feel more part of the community. It’s probably successful in urban areas get out of their small apartment, creates exposure with the windows, the need to be outside and part of something drives this search of identity. 8. How would you define your creative process step by step? It’s the standard creative process, but on the front end, before programming, we tend to do what’s called a brand discovery. A lot of how far or how deep we go is about how well the client is attuned to his own


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brand. They have to accept how the world perceives them and what their message is because it creates a strong base to develop that physical Identity. There are two ways to design, ego driven design and client design. An artist is more ego driven, developing his signature, exploring his ideas and can be more of a cache for brands who relate. Client driven design has no continuity because it changes for each client, it is personalized to the identity of a group of individuals and their message. I always start with band discovery and then find tons of solutions that are a manifestation of that brand, think of how people will interact with it. I always make it a huge deal to be transparent, honest with your clients, fitting the value and be relate-able to the target. I think this job is about lifestyle marketing, creating a client driven design that allows people to have and ego-driven brand experience.

Mr. Eric Reagan Associate Creative Director, Leo Burnett Chicago 1. Do you find it difficult to explain your creative process? It depends on what the project is, it can be multiple things, whether its guiding someone or if I’m doing it. For the most part it’s easy to explain when it is a specific project, you have a creative brief delivered to you and then step by step you take on wire-frames, and then go to a higher level in conception and develop multiple creative trails. Then it is agreed or not by the client which results in different rounds of back and forth to solidify the creative execution of the chosen concept into compositions. These templates help us define the creative assets needed to generate the content like photography or film. There is a different process depending on the project in the amount of time you put in the digital or conception phases but overall this is the steps to take. 2. How would you define your creative process step by step? I always start out by sketching, gathering inspiration and similar ideas that will help find inspiration. Then I start in Illustrator Software Program to create a composition base, logo, layout and move on to Photoshop to accompany these with mood boards referring fonts, photo styles, colors and anything that could explain the feel and look for the concept. Then you do a lot of versions of what you actually want the idea to look like visually,


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I iterate a ton and select only the best to show the client. I’ve noticed some creative directors want to see all the comps to see your process but I self edit in order to minimize the options and show them the best. We solve so many problems through iterations and the variations tell the story and show the evolution of what problems came along and how we solved them. For example, you have to consider from the start what platforms it will be used on, considering mobile and responsive Design for Web in order to save time in the long run. I feel that sometimes younger folks don’t have as much experience working with different platforms like Android or other, surprisingly they are less tech savvy in a way. 3. When you get stuck, how do you deal with it and what do you usually do? I bounce ideas on people, present to someone else and see what they think. When you have to describe your concept out loud, it helps you figure it out. Also sometimes, you just need a physical break and to unplug or work on another project. I’m not a 5 to 9pm type of person and I am most creative at night so I constantly record stuff to use later. This helps me get unstuck, I run through my ideas and see what comes to mind. Other times, I’ll just go back through the process and redo variations to take another approach, going back a step can help find another way to deal with the problem. Every-time I deal with a problem, I keep in mind how I solved it, so that if I come across this type of obstacle in a later project I can go straight to my toolbox and save some time. 4. Do you have a ritual you follow? Something consistent in your Routine? Since I work in an environment where you are interrupted a lot with meetings that are not attached to the task at hand and multiple project deadlines, I really try to concentrate fully and disconnect from what’s happening around me. I separate myself from distraction, close off my browser, email etc. In today’s advertising we are all working faster and faster on multiple projects, we invite in so much that for me I have to just stop, concentrate on one, and forget the rest. At the office, I mostly solve problems, conceptualize, oversee people and present to people and clients, the actual creative execution I do at home. 5. How do you feel about working in coffee shops? Do you feel it hinders or accentuates your creativity? I don’t work in coffee shops very much, coming to Starbucks is more of


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a break and helps through a creative block but I think it’s rather unusual to work there; maybe for some stuff off-line. It’s an interactive place, you can talk and discuss concepts but can’t actually get work done. It’s more a place to spitball ideas or present ideas to somebody that helps through the process but it’s not a place that is fruitful for direct results, it’s an in-between type of zone. Coffee is always a big part of working at home though and I like my setup; laptop, monitor, Wacom tablet, external keyboard. I have the same setup at home than at my office, designing without that would be challenging I think. It is definitely part of this “ritual”, it makes things comfortable. This coffee space is beneficial though, we have that setup in our office so we can grab people, make a cup and discuss freely. Since we already have that facilitation in the office and this very casual space setup with booths, sofas and conference rooms I feel like we already have this coffeehouse effect. There are even more options since Leo Burnett and probably other advertising agencies have adapted the environment to enable this freedom and choice of space in function of your creative need, from formal to informal areas. 6. If I show you this sketch of the coffee process and compare it to your idea of the creative process, do you see any similarities and does it makes sens to you? It’s comparable, you start with a creative brief and then add the beans or different types of raw ideas that you then boil down to a creative solution that could be the coffee. The filter could be the questions of whether it answers the task at hand, if it will please the client and if it fits the demographic. The whole point is to make the consumer drink it. By changing the different parts or elements, it could change the taste and form of the coffee. The heat could be when you are updating your website and constantly keep improving the idea, not letting it go cold. There is obviously a fine balance of the tools and disciplines used. If the coffee has too much water and if I’m not considering all the right elements or focus too much on one ingredient, the user experience might not be as efficient or strong. 7. Do you think the creative process can be taught, or does one develop it instinctively? It can be taught but I think a person finds out along the way what fits them best. As your profession grows, you find that you started with big strokes and guidelines of this process but ended up learning from


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what you worked on and the obstacles you faced to create your own knowledge and guidelines. The longer you work at a discipline, the more organized you get. I think experience is what makes it personal. Sometimes very different projects have the same problem and having this toolbox of solutions accumulated through experience enable you to meet the short deadline. 8. How does developing and idea or concept in an agency setting or freelance change anything in your process? I think that when you work in an agency, you need to understand that there is a hierarchy and that a lot of people are involved in the solution. Your idea will probably not make it through, everyone has to review it and give their take. A very important thing is not to get too attached to your idea, have a level head and be able to take feedback without taking it personally. I see that in the young people coming in and get upset or turned off after their idea is not taken, instead of staying on the project and making it work. You have to be mindful of the big agency process and not be revolutionary, you have to expect that your idea will change and be changed. The Leo Burnett process for an ACD is starting with a brief and having 2/3 weeks to come up with something to present to the Creative Reunion Comity. It is an internal review before showing it to the client filled with the head creatives, commercials and strategists. The ECD summarizes everybody’s feedback and send it back to make the necessary changes. Then there are Client Work Sessions every Thursday with the client to show the progress and make sure we stay on the right track. When everyone is pleased, it is validated and sent off for launch. In Freelance there are less people involved, a different setting and you meet your own deadlines. You have more hats to wear though so that’s the complicated part, you are not just a designer, you also have to sell your idea, manage your hours and stay on top of your clients demands; time management is always a big deal but here you have a lot to stay on top of. 9. Do you drink Coffee? When do you drink it? What benefits do you get out of it? Constantly! We have Nespresso at the office, I do that in the morning. I probably drink way too much coffee during the day, and in between lunch and the end of the day I go to Starbucks to take a break and let my mind loose before heading home and working some more. I have another


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Nespresso around dinner, some people get hyper from it but me, it helps me concentrate, relax and stay up through the night. I am very much not a morning person so it helps get my mind ready for the 9am meetings. Coffee is awful at the office but it’s readily available so we drink it anyways, it definitely makes me appreciate my machine at home though. 10. When you work, do you feel being in a social environment or surrounded by people helps during the creative process? During brainstorming and carving out the idea, i prefer to focus and stay in my zone but it really depends where I am in my process. I search alone but then go around talking with people to get feedback and alternate between the two. Even in the most informal meeting while you are explaining your ideas, it is perfecting the sell and fine tuning of the concept so it is always better to go around asking people what they think as you near the end of the project.

Mr Robert Bertolini Freelance Art Director, Chicago 1. Do you find it difficult to explain your creative process? I do find it difficult because it is something so personal. 2. How would you define your creative process step by step? What I usually do after I get the brief,,, since I am very image oriented, is I get tons of visual ideas that pop up into my head. From these I get 2/3 best ones that become concepts which I then try to visualize in physical form. So I sketch it out and try to get into as realistic as possible on Photoshop. I rethink it, go back, refine, sleep on it, go back again and perfect it. After all that I ask people’s opinion on the aesthetic point of view but only ask my Director of Creation for the validation of the concept. 3. When you get stuck, how do you deal with it and what do you usually do? Almost always, I’ll walk away from it and sleep on it. A lot of my creative thinking happens before I get to sleep and when I wake up; I am a very early riser, sometimes I wake up at 4am.


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4. Do you have a ritual you follow? Something consistent in your Routine? I have to be in a quiet place, that is essential. I like soft music, not too bright of a lighting,and sitting in front of my computer, even if I am not using it. When I get up, I work for 2/3 hours, then I take two cups of coffee, usually go back to bed for an hour and then go to the office or keep working on freelance projects. 5. Where do you get the most work done? I can be anywhere as long as it is a quiet space, in my car or at home. It is very easy for me to tune out so I can do that anywhere. 6. How do you feel about working in coffee shops? Do you feel it hinders or accentuates your creativity? I’ve never done that, I think it would hinder mine. It’s more of an ego and be seen type of thing, I don’t really believe people are there to work. Another reason is that these places are not very predominant in the suburbs. Since I grew up in this business over 30 years ago now, there really wasn’t that type of place where creatives would meet so I don’t really see that notion in coffee-shops. 7. If I show you this sketch of the coffee process and compare it to your idea of the creative process, do you see any similarities and does it makes sens to you? It’s not really the way I think. If I think coffee I think aroma, sounds, early morning scent, comfort, cozy type of thing and how it would be visually. It’s not that logical in my mind. So for me there are no steps, it’s more how I absorb it. Family and tradition is how I approach things, maybe that’s just the Italian in me. 8. Do you think the creative process can be taught, or does one develop it instinctively? It can be taught but I think you are born creative. You can teach it but if you are a creative thinker, your work will be better instinctively. It usually just comes to me, left brained people are obviously more in sync with getting a visual image.


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9. How does developing and idea or concept in an agency setting or freelance change anything in your process? It depends on the agency, if they give space to me great, if they are too budget oriented it restricts the mind and I never did my best work in that environment. It depends if they respect you and let you do your own process. In freelance, you have the same thing dealing with a client. But I have a choice, if I don’t like it I just won’t work with them again. I am at home so I do it and give them my price and time it took so that’s a good point. The most liberating thing in freelance is that you are on your own terms and it is empowering since usually the clients we deal with don’t really know what to expect and how to work it so we feel in control. 10. Do you drink Coffee? When do you drink it? What benefits do you get out of it? In the morning and I drink too much of it. I am a cappuccino addict, my first cup creates euphoria in my brain for about 30 minutes of heavenly good work, the second cup is more for the rush and I don’t enjoy it as much but I drink it anyways. I never drink coffee at night, I can’t sleep that much already so I don’t think that’d be a good idea. There are always so many things on my mind, I feel like I am everywhere and over thinking everything. I laugh at myself for all of the silly ideas I sometimes come up with and making myself go crazy. 12. When you work, do you feel being in a social environment or surrounded by people helps during the creative process? If I know where I am going and have the idea, then I can thrive and go ask people’s opinions, but for the conceptual part I need to be in my own environment. If I am working with a team, I’ll try to steer them in that direction, I can be very forward, I listen but I always push further and won’t recede my idea. When I came back to the agency life after a leave of absence, I saw how that I had changed or maybe the agency did, everyone was very competitive and not very nice, maybe my perception of it had changed and my process as wheel. Anyways, I left 2 weeks after coming into Leo Burnett and never went back.


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Mr. Jonathan Sangster Design Educator at the Harrington College of Design, Chicago 1. Do you find it difficult to explain your creative process? No, teaching helps understand the details and the best way to put something as vague as this process into words. Explaining it out loud helps me understand my own process and the process of others. 2. How would you define your creative process step by step? I start by looking at the concept and then start drawing other visual associations. I then try different experimentations of form and get to refining and picking out the best ideas. I repeat this process until something makes sense. Only then do I ask feedback from others, sometimes it validates my concept, sometimes it brings new ideas to me on how to refine it further. I repeat the whole process many times until I get to the final product. 3. When you get stuck, how do you deal with it and what do you usually do? Depending on the deadline, if it is short I keep working on it and hacking at the idea I already put together. If I have some time, I look for outside sources of inspiration through books, magazines of Art and Design, or everyday life analogies. 4. Do you have a ritual you follow? Something consistent in your routine? In all truthfulness, coffee & cigarettes, but I don’t necessarily have a routine. I usually gravitate towards outside inspiration related to where I got stuck. 5. Where do you get the most work done? (Even the conceptual part) I enjoy working from home, in my own space, outside on my back porch, in my office wit my personal inspirations. I would definitely say I work better in a familiar environment, usually alone. The inspiration comes to me as I am working and when I stop thinking about it and take a break, letting my mind make new links as I go.


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6. How do you feel about working in coffee shops? Do you feel it hinders or accentuates your creativity? I would work in a coffee shop as a necessity or convenience, when I have time on my hands and am too far from my office or home but I don’t typically as I have coffee and work supplies there. There are too many people and not enough solitude, but maybe that’s just the paranoia talking. 7. If I show you this sketch of the coffee process and compare it to your idea of the creative process, do you see any similarities and does it makes sens to you? I think it makes sense and that my creative process is probably a lot more time spent on “grinding the beans”. The ideas get ground up and processed and mixed with the water; which to me is representative of the technique and skills used to create this balanced delicious coffee in liquid form. 8. Do you think the creative process can be taught, or does one develop it instinctively? Kind of both. For a lot of people it has to be taught but some already have the creative instinct. Teaching them the creative process through studies and a textbook approach helps focus their own creative way of building that idea. Depending on the project, I will use other people’s examples of the creative process, how it can be and look like. In our personal typography project with the students, I will start with an inspiration and then let them build their own idea of it. 9. How does developing and idea or concept in an agency setting or freelance change anything in your process? I believe Ideas would be more limited in an agency setting as you are trying to get another person’s idea and filter it through your brain, whereas when you are freelancing, you have a broader range of ideas and more liberties. The big difference is that in one you represent the agency, therefore you have boundaries, and in freelance you are representing yourself. 10. When do you feel most creative? Later, anytime the sun isn’t up! I don’t know why that is, I’m just a bit of a night owl I guess. I can’t actually function fully when the sun is up I feel.


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11. Do you drink Coffee? When do you drink it? What benefits do you get out of it? YES, yes I do! Typically I only drink it in the morning but morning to me is basically anytime after 4PM. I think I just need something to keep me at an acceptable level of energy. Why coffee and not some energy drink? They just have too much sugar and seem unnatural, I almost have too much energy then and can’t stand still. I take my coffee just black, no sugar. 12. When you work, do you feel being in a social environment or surrounded by people helps during the creative process? No, the opposite of that. It’s just easier to focus when you are not surrounded by people, not that it’s difficult, but it’s not pleasant. I guess you could say I’m not a big fan of people, music is my people and that’s usually the background noise I prefer when I work.

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V BIBLIOGRAPHY & REFERENCES

Documentary 1. BLACK COFFEE was produced by Ina Fichman and Productions La Fête (Coffee) Inc. in association with TVOntario with the participation of the Canadian Television Fund created by the Government of Canada and the Canadian Cable Industry, Telefilm Canada: Equity Investment Program, CTF: Licence Fee Program, Government of Quebec Tax Credit Program, Canadian Film or Video Tax Credit Program, National Film Board of Canada, The Harold Greenberg Fund, Historia, TFO. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTDy-L0NKIg

31. TED Talks, Steven Johnson: Where good ideas come from, 2010 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0af00UcTO-c&feature=youtu.be

Book 9. The Coffee Book: Anatomy of an Industry from Crop to the Last Drop – April 24, 2006 by Nina Luttinger and Gregory Dicum 24. Advertising by Design: Generating and Designing Creative Ideas Across Media, by Robin Landa, 2010


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28. The Creative Process Illustrated (how advertising’s big ideas ar born) W. Glenn Griffin and Deborah Morrison, 2010 33.The Grand Literary Cafés of Europe by Noel Riley Fitch, Andrew Midgley 35. Communication Matters: Materialist Approaches to Media, Mobility and Networks, edited by Jeremy Packer, Stephen B. Crofts Wiley, 2013

Online Book or Study 2.Tucker, Catherine M. 2011. Coffee Culture: Local Experiences, Global Connections. New York: Routledge. http://www.academia.edu/4968435/Coffee_Culture_Local_Experiences_Global_Connections

5. Science and Food Supported by the UCLA Division of Life Sciences and Department of Integrative Biology & Physiology: Coffee Brewing Methods Posted on February 17, 2015 by CATHERINE HU https://scienceandfooducla.wordpress.com/2015/02/17/coffee-brewing-methods/

7.Tucker, Catherine M. 2011. Coffee Culture: Local Experiences, Global Connections. New York: Routledge. http://www.academia.edu/4968435/Coffee_Culture_Local_Experiences_Global_Connections

8.The Rise of Yuppie Coffees and the Reimagination of Class in the United States, William Roseberry, American Anthropologist, New Series, Vol. 98, No. 4. (Dec., 1996), pp. 762-775 http://cftn.ca/sites/default/files/AcademicLiterature/yuppie_coffee1.pdf

14. Coffee Culture: Local Experiences, Global Connections, Society, Class, and Taste, By Catherine M. Tucker 2011 http://www.academia.edu/4968435/Coffee_Culture_Local_Experiences_Global_Connections


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16. Time Magazine, Millennials: The Me Me Me Genration by Joel Stein, 2013 http://www.prjohnsonenglish.org/uploads/5/3/8/5/5385246/millennials_themememegeneration.pdf

17. US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health- The lateralized processing of affect in emotionally labile extraverts and introverts: central and autonomic effects.Smith BD 1995 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7734627

20. Big Idea Patterns of the Advertising Creative Process by Cabe Erin Lindsay, B.A., University of Texas at Austin 2011 https://repositories.lib.utexas.edu/bitstream/handle/2152/ETD-UT-2011-05-2651/LINDSAYMASTERS-REPORT.pdf?sequence=2

29. Coffee Culture: Local Experiences, Global Connections, Society, Class, and Taste, byy Catherine M. Tucker 2011 http://www.academia.edu/4968435/Coffee_Culture_Local_Experiences_Global_Connections

Web References 3.National Coffee Association of U.S.A., Inc http://www.ncausa.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=69

4.Full Infographic by CoffeeBeanDirect.com can be found in Appendix 6. How different brewing methods affect your cup, Posted on March 14th 2014 by Maddie https://www.kickinghorsecoffee.com/en/blog/how-different-brewing-methods-affect-your-cup

10. Starbucks Company Information, 2010 http://www.starbucks.com/about-us/company-information


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11. How Starbucks Transformed Coffee from a commodity into a $4 splurge, by Debbie Millmann Fastcompany 2011 http://www.fastcompany.com/1777409/how-starbucks-transformed-coffee-commodity-4-splurge

12. Don’t Fear Starbucks, Why the franchise actually helps mom and pop coffeehouses by Taylor Clark, 2007. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/hey_wait_a_minute/2007/12/dont_fear_ starbucks.html

13. Media Culture Journal Vol. 15, No. 2 by Anthony McCosker, Rowan Wilken, 2012 http://journal.media-culture.org.au/index.php/mcjournal/article/viewArticle/459

15. The Culture of Coffee Drinkers By Krystal D’Costa, August 11, 201 http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/anthropology-in-practice/2011/08/11/the-culture-of-coffeedrinkers/

18. How the Hum of a Coffee Shop Can Boost Creativity by Anahad O’Connor , New York Times 2013 http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/06/21/how-the-hum-of-a-coffee-shop-can-boost-creativity/?_ r=2&

19. How Caffeine Can Cramp Creativity, by BY MARIA KONNIKOVA The New Yorker 2013 http://www.newyorker.com/tech/elements/how-caffeine-can-cramp-creativity

21. French Polymath Henri Poincaré on How Creativity Works by Maria Popova, Brain Pickings, 2012 http://www.brainpickings.org/2013/08/15/henri-poincare-on-how-creativity-works/

22 The Foundations of Science” Henri Poincaré, Paris 1908, translated by G.B. Halstead. Found in Wayne State University archives. http://www.is.wayne.edu/DRBOWEN/CRTVYW99/POINCARE.HTM


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23. French Polymath Henri Poincaré on How Creativity Works by Maria Popova, Brain Pickings, 2012 http://www.brainpickings.org/2013/08/15/henri-poincare-on-how-creativity-works/

25. A 5-Step Technique for Producing Ideas circa 1939, Brain Pickings, by Maria Popova, 2012 http://www.brainpickings.org/2012/05/04/a-technique-for-producing-ideas-young/

26. The Art of Thought: Graham Wallas on the Four Stages of Creativity, 1926, Brain Pickings, by Maria Popova, 2012 http://www.brainpickings.org/2013/08/28/the-art-of-thought-graham-wallas-stages/

27. How Einstein Thought: Why “Combinatory Play” Is the Secret of Genius by Maria Popova, 2012 http://www.brainpickings.org/index.php/2013/08/14/how-einstein-thought-combinatorialcreativity/

30. Millenial Marketing Powered by Future cast, Why Starbucks is Still Number One With Millennials, Jeff Fromm, 2014 http://www.millennialmarketing.com/2014/02/why-starbucks-is-still-number-one-withmillennials/

32. M/C Journal, Vol. 15, No. 2 (2012), Café Space, Communication, Creativity, and Materialism, Anthony McCosker, Rowan Wilken. http://journal.media-culture.org.au/index.php/mcjournal/article/viewArticle/459

34. Is Noise Always Bad? Exploring the Effects of Ambient Noise on Creative Cognition, 2012, Ravi Mehta, Rui (Juliet) Zhu, Amar Cheema http://www.jcr-admin.org/files/pressreleases/061812093656_Mehtarelease.pdf


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36. The coffeeshop is the future of...well, everything, Gigaom, by Jessica Stillman, 2012 https://gigaom.com/2012/03/02/the-coffee-shop-is-the-future-of-well-everything/

37. In the Future Everything Will Be A Coffee Shop, The Speculist, Stephen Gordon, 2011. http://blog.speculist.com/scenarios/the-coffee-shop-take-over.html

38. How the Hum of a Coffee Shop Can Boost Creativity, The New York Times, by Anahad O’Connor 2013 http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/06/21/how-the-hum-of-a-coffee-shop-can-boost-creativity/

39. SaveTheDate, Inauguration du Café Marcel, Facebook Event, July 16th 2015, Agence Marcel https://www.facebook.com/events/1615292672091132/

40. KissKissBankBank, Et hop, une jeune rue ! HopShop, 2015 http://www.kisskissbankbank.com/fr/projects/et-hop-une-jeune-rue

41. Art Brussels Exposants 2015,OTHERS, HISK Cafe, Institut supérieur des BeauxArts et Arts Visuels http://www.bozar.be/fr http://www.artbrussels.com/fr/Exhibitors/Others/Hisk_Cafe

42. BBC News, How the world’s first webcam made a coffee pot famous By Rebecca Kesby, 2012 http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-20439301


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INTERVIEW WITH STANLEY HAINSWORTH Brand Thinking and other Noble Pursuits by Debbie Millman, 2011 Stanley, how would you define “brand”? A brand is an entity that engenders an emotional connection with a consumer. What do you mean by an “emotional connection”? Consumers emotionally connect with brands when the brands repeatedly provide something that the consumer wants, desires, or needs. Let’s return to the moment a person first realizes they have to make a choice between coffee brands or soda brands or shampoo brands. How do people really make choices? Do you think people are conscious of the processes they use? I think the best brands are those that create something for consumers that they don’t even know they need yet. A coffee brand like Starbucks created something people didn’t know they needed. Same with Nike. Who knew we needed a high-end performance running shoe? I think when people are surprised or delighted by how a brand can change their lives by just making it a little bit better—or a little bit more fun or a little more performance-oriented—that’s when they start creating a connection with that brand. The concept of a person not knowing that they need something is a fascinating one. Clearly, there were millions of coffee shops all over the world before Starbucks launched its particular brand of coffee shop. How do marketers create desire for something that consumers don’t know they need? I think great brands create the “end state” first. When launching a ne­w product, marketers are not very specific about how a product actually works. They express more about the result. They talk about what you will feel or what you will be like if you choose to engage with that brand or that product. The Apple commercial in 1984 was a great example of this. There was very little about the product in the spot. It was all about the aftereffect of the product.


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During your tenure at Starbucks, how deliberate were the choices that the Starbucks marketing team was making? Were they very intentionally creating a scenario and an environment that people would want to experience? I think it was very deliberate from the beginning. When Howard Schultz first came to Starbucks, he wasn’t the owner of the company. He joined a couple guys that had started the company. He went over to Milan and saw the coffee culture and espresso bars where people met in the morning. He saw how people caught up on the news while they sat or stood and drank their little cups of espresso. That inspired the vision he crafted from the beginning—to design a social environment where people not only came for great coffee, but also to connect to a certain culture. Howard was very wise in knowing that Starbucks was not the only company in the world to make great coffee. On the contrary, there are hundreds of other companies that can make great coffee. So what’s the great differentiator? The answer is the distinction that most great brands create. There are other companies that make great running shoes or great toys or great detergent or soap, but what is the real differentiator that people keep coming back for? For Starbucks, it was creating a community, a “third place.” It was a very conscious attribute of the brand all along and impacted every decision about the experience: who the furniture was chosen for, what artwork would be on the walls, what music was going to be played, and how it would be played. Did Howard anticipate that Starbucks would grow as quickly as it did and become as pervasive? Was his goal to create a global brand? I think the vision was always for Starbucks to become a global brand. There were big ambitions from the beginning. I once asked Howard how it felt to have thousands of people here in our offices, and thousands of people in thousands of stores all over the world working for the brand. He just looked at me and shook his head and said, “I had no idea that it could become this.”


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Over the course of your career, you’ve worked in three different companies that have an iconic role in our culture. With two of them, Starbucks and Nike, the products are sold at a very high premium. Both organizations have taken commodity products and turned them into desirable, sexy, coveted products that incite enormous loyalty and an almost zealotlike behavior. Do you see a common denominator in the way these products are marketed? Would you say that there’s something that these companies have in common that has generated this fervor? What I observed working in both companies is the rigor and unfailing attention to the product, and the unbelievable energy spent on creating the brand experience. I describe it as experience first and product second, because no one is going to pick up your product and try it if they don’t want to buy into the experience. This experience comes through the advertising, the retail environment, and the online experience— every single brand touchpoint. There is a very intentional effort to inspire people to get caught up in that experience and say, “I want to try that”— whatever that thing happens to be. What is the most important aspect to consider when creating a brand? For me, it’s all about having a story to tell. This is what will enable you to create an experience around the brand. What do you mean by “a story”? Every brand has a story, whether it’s the founder’s story or the brand’s reason for being. Some brands have never told their story well, or have lost their story. Microsoft is a good example of a brand that’s never told its story well. It’s a huge consumer product software platform, a mega conglomerate, and there’s no love there. There’s no emotional story to rally around. The Bill Gates story is such an incredible story, but it’s never really been expressed by the brand. It’s really interesting to watch brands get older, and gain more competitors in the marketplace, and struggle to stay relevant. Look at Levi’s or Gap or any of the great American brands that have gone through these struggles. Look at Starbucks! In order for brands to recapture their spirit, they almost always go back to their core. They seem to forget for a while, then remember, “Oh yeah, we’re a coffee company!” Then they get rid of the movies and the spinning racks filled with CDs and start focusing on coffee again.


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What would likely be the next step after defining or developing a story? You develop a story, and then you start to identify who the consumers are. Who are you talking to? How are you going to talk to them? How are you going to tell your story to them? What are your opportunities or your channels through which you can tell that story? Do we need to design some new products, or do we need to redesign our existing products because they aren’t true to our story? Or maybe you determine that your products are fine, but you haven’t been talking to your consumers in the right way, so it’s a communication issue. Examine every touchpoint and look at how you can tell one clear, consistent story. People who aren’t very experienced with branding, or are new at it, sometimes feel that they can get away with something being off-brand. But I think that genuinely good branding involves an examination of every single way the brand, the product, and the experience is viewed. Everything that you do, everything you release, everything you say — everything is the cumulative expression of your brand. Did the experience of buyig a product you liked bring you happiness and confidence? If the brand has been advertised widely, then you’ve just bought your way into a world that you’ve only seen from the outside. The experience is like when there’s a club that you keep walking by, and you finally enter that club, and now you’re a part of it. Do you think that there’s any danger in that? That’s what brands play on. It’s part of our nature to want to be accepted. Yet, at the same time, we have this desire to feel like we’re different from everyone else — which is the complete opposite of that yearning for acceptance but is nonetheless relevant. I found that strategy particularly intriguing — when brands create things that make you feel like you’re different from everyone else. I remember being in London in the 1970s and first seeing punks in Trafalgar Square. They had their hair “Mohawked” up, and they wore jackets covered in safety pins. I couldn’t help but imagine them at home, preparing themselves to go out, in order to look very different from anyone in their household or in their neighborhood. But once they were out, they looked exactly like everyone else in Trafalgar Square. No matter how hard we try to look different, we

Brand Thinking and other Noble Pursuits , How Starbucks Transformed Coffee from a commodity into a $4 splurge, Fastcompany 2011 , by Debbie Millman


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almost always still look like someone. Once a lot of people get access into an exclusive club, the original members get turned off and leave to find another smaller, more exclusive club to join. I have often wondered if I should feel guilty because of my role in this. On the one hand, it is disturbing, but on the other hand, I admire it. But as much as I believe in this, I also realize that no one has to have those products. You can live without them — they’re not essential to life. I’ve probed deep in my soul to see if I felt bad doing this work, but I never have. I have never felt guilty. Did you do a lot of market research in the process of working on this project? Yes, we did a lot of market research. It was interesting coming to this considering my background at Nike, where ideas were validated by gut instinct, not the consumer. Starbucks was pretty much the same way. As Howard Schultz used to say, “If I went to a group of consumers and asked them if I should sell a $4 cup of coffee, what would they have told me?” Both Starbucks and Nike have modified their position on market research now, and do more of it, but they aren’t like a P&Gtype organization where they do heavy-duty qualitative and quantitative market research. When I left Nike, that type of validation was foreign territory for me. I had to learn it all afterwards. What do you think of the state of branding right now? I think branding has become a consumer-friendly word. It’s being used in political campaigns, and it’s being used in the boardroom. Schools have even started to talk about branding. On the one hand, there’s a danger the word will become watered down and less meaningful than it has been in the past. On the other hand, it will be fascinating to see how communicators use this opportunity. We have the ability to lead this cultural shift, and I hope we can do it before the term “branding” becomes just another generic, overused, and misunderstood word.


Thank you for reading Coffee as a Metaphor for Creative Communication Sup de Pub Chicago 2015, Valentine Nouvel


Mémoire Coffee and Creative Communication 2015  

How is the process of making coffee similar to the creative process in Advertising and what it says about communication today?

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