Ooze

Just before leaving London I had a great dinner with the Macleod of Macleod and Jason Korman from Stormhoek.

I was going to blog our conversation about “objects of sociability” but got too busy rushing to the airport. No matter: Hugh’s written it up lucidly.

The highlight of the dinner for me was a discussion about what Johnnie called “Objects of Sociability”, a term he attributed to Juri Engstrom‘s talk at Reboot7.

What is an Object of Sociability [OoS, or “Ooze” for short]? “Ooze” is simply something that allows you to engage with another person. It could be anything. It could a party. It could be a bottle of wine. It could be a hyperlink. It could be a social gesture. It could be social currency. It could be doodling a cartoon on the back of a business card at a bar and giving it to the cute barmaid. You tell me.

I hadn’t thought of spelling it like a glutinous substance but now Hugh has I like it: it brings in a sense of the flowing and unpredictable. On the other hand, some of Hugh’s commenters point to ooze as in slimy. Well, there’s truth in that for a lot of marketing I guess.

But hey, I just like the word I don’t claim to decide what it means to you. And there’s a moral in all this for conventional brand thinking which may do slimy but doesn’t really get sociability and the flexibility and mutation it involves.

This seems to see brands as solid objects, created by “brand architecture” articulating “brand propositions”.As regular readers (you know who you both are) will know, I think it’s more complex than that. And more simple.

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