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The best communication ideas of 2010 will lie in the intersection between digital and physical

January 31, 2010

Foursquare just announced a partnership with Bravo Television  for a few seconds it did not compute, but I went deeper to see what the deal was all about. It’s really smart as it offers Bravo a chance for deeper engagement with its audience.

“Of course Bravo is going to put the full power of their network behind
the partnership, promoting Bravo’s Foursquare hooks in TV spots. The
NBC-owned cable network also plans to use Foursquare for sweepstakes,
awards, and other viewer incentives. They’ll even offer Foursquare
tie-ins to Bravo advertisers, which will likely come in the form of
coupons for viewers to cash in at the advertisers’ venues.”

Bravo is keen to be part of the next big thing to go mass, but the communication opportunities here are impressive. Fans of shows will have the chance to follow in the footsteps of their television heroes and get to participate in branded contests.

It’s a great example where the virtual world is being unleashed out into our geography thanks to the mobile internet.

On the other side of the coin lies the physical screen and the opportunities that it offers for interaction. Here we’ve yet to scratch the surface with the possibilities that exist for layered communication on high tech out of home panels and the opportunity for play.

Last month I was fortunate enough to attend the Decode exhibit at London’s Victoria and Albert where I saw artists experimenting with this technology. As you can see from this short video of Body Paint by Turkish designer Mehmet Akten, it shows how a very simple idea can be deeply engaging.

The growing physicality of technology and the merging of digital and physical spaces will be a key communication theme for 2010 and some of the best ideas this year will be in these spaces.

Posted by Ed Cotton

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