Brand Strategy: The Big Picture

This process is dedicated to my late friend, business partner and mentor, Dan Bockman.

When I met him, Dan was in his 70’s, at the tail end of a brilliant career as a Creative Director for an international ad agency in LA, with clients like Visa and Honda during the heyday of the ‘MadMen’ era. Dan was primarily responsible for Honda becoming the “Number 1 car company” in the world in the 80’s. When Honda came to his agency, they just wanted a small piece of the American market share, and they had a new, as yet unnamed, fuel economy car to advertise. Dan named the car Accord and raised their expectations and window of opportunity by pointing out that a low-fuel car COULD become  #1 during an oil embargo. And so it was. At the tail-end of his career, he was hired by Steven Spielberg to convert the characters in a commercial he had created into a feature length film which ended up being a TV show called Gabe and Walker.

Dan taught me the Big Picture Process, and it is like a haiku in the world of overblown marketing processes. Before we sign a contract with a new client, whether for a website, an app, a crowdfunding campaign or an integrated marketing effort, we spend 1-2 hours in meetings with the client via skype or in-person. Our goal at these meetings is to discover three things about you and your business or subject matter:

  1. WHAT’S YOUR STORY?
  2. WHO’S YOUR AUDIENCE? (we create a profile of your ideal clients/customers)
  3. HOW TO TELL IT? (identify media channels and messages)


This exploration is the seed of the strategy, design, media or technology we will create together and for you because it gives us the big picture. This is a paid engagement, and the deliverables are a guiding document that summarizes:

  1. CONTENT & CONCEPT STRATEGY
  2. CUSTOMER AVATAR
  3. SUGGESTED CHANNELS

 

 

ROOT TO LIBERATION: a documentary

I’m very happy to announce that Lakshmi Narayan of Awake Media has joined forces with Producer/Director Eric Thiermann, founder of Impact Creative and  Academy Award Nominee and DP for Oscar winner “Women for America”  to make a documentary called Root to Liberation: Iboga, Addiction & the Law.

This movie will shine a light on the problem of the prescription-induced addiction epidemic and the failure of the current system, as well as the solution that iboga represents for healing. We’re going to explore the medical model, the sacramental model, and the issues around sustainability, extraction, supply and demand, and integration, following practitioners, shamans, and patients from California to Cape Town.

Because of the alarming statistic of 116 deaths a day due to opioids, we would like to fast track the production process and get a crowdfunding campaign up as soon as possible, and to this end we are busy putting our budgets together this week to present to MAPS who has agreed to be our fiscal sponsor.

Stay tuned for more.

About Lakshmi Narayan, founder

About Lakshmi Narayan, founder

Why Awake Media? In this corporate controlled dis-information age, it sounds like an oxymoron. We should not let it be so! The intention of Awake Media, and awaken-ing, its mission, flows from its founder, me, Lakshmi Narayan, a sentient life manifested in the corpus and work of Awake.

In the years of my graphic design education and career, I have passed through the academic and corporate worlds to find them largely empty of substance, serving mainly their voracious appetite, more than real need.

From being a long-time student of the I Ching and as of this writing, my 56 years of life and love of it, I have learned many things, of geometry, of archetype and word, of color and pattern, energy and feeling, and I infuse this knowledge in my complex yet simple work. What is success? What does it cost?

I am always trying to fill the footsteps of being Awake, to marry beauty and function, vocation and avocation. My marketing plan is to address real need, mine and my clients. I strive to be a happy Medium of The Middle Way.

Awake Media is structured as a Coalition of Independent Contractors who work together in fluid teams as the occasion and project demands. Don’t hesitate to initiate a conversation with me if you have a project you need help with. Call or text 619-366-7788

Lakshmi Narayan
Founder & Creative Director,
Awake Media

 

Design Renaissance 2010

 

Press Release:

SANTA CRUZ, California.  March 9, 2010 – Awake Media closes Earth Day weekend celebration with Design Renaissance 2010, a one-day event on Sunday, April 18, 2010 from 9AM– 4PM at the Dream Inn.

Envisioning a global renaissance in creative thinking, the event features a plenary of local and national leaders in sustainable design including Eric Corey Freed, author and Executive Director of Urban Revision, Ryan Duke from Project H Design, Bonnie de Varco, chief archivist for Stanford’s Buckminster Fuller Archive, world renowned chaos theorist and mathematician Ralph Abraham, and Helen and Newton Harrison, globally recognized local eco-artists. A number of local leaders will help moderate the discussion and involve the audience in participatory multimedia design exercises.

Speakers will inspire the audience with innovative thinking, best practices, and new trends in the application of sustainable design across many fields including architecture and urban renewal, systems and information design, product design, and environmental activism. Topics will include design for humanitarian and health needs, urban eco-zones, and the local watershed issues.

Design Renaissance, the inaugural event is envisioned to be an ongoing project, seeking to bring together people, projects, and ideas that can help co-create a sustainable Santa Cruz, while inspiring the global community. The nexus of ecology, design, and business around the challenges of sustainability is currently producing a new wave of creativity and inspiration that brings communities into new collaborative relationships with the triple bottom line of people, profit, and planet.

“With the Design Renaissance, we are excited to introduce the Santa Cruz community to a number of visionary yet practical ideas for a resilient and sustainable Santa Cruz”, says co-founder Michael Sammet, who teaches Sustainable Design at the Academy of Art University. “We are confident that the Monterey Bay Region, with all of its brain power and ecological consciousness, will continue be a leader in the burgeoning field of sustainable design.”

“When it comes to co-creating a sustainable Santa Cruz, everyone is a designer,” says Lakshmi Narayan, CEO of Awake Media.

Co-sponsors for the event include Transition Santa Cruz and the Santa Cruz Design + Innovation Center.

The  Design Renaissance event took place at the Dream Inn, 175 West Cliff Drive, from 9 AM – 4 PM on Sunday, April 18, 2010. Early bird tickets were $40. For more information or to purchase tickets call Awake Media at 831-740-1006 or go to http://www.designrenaissance.net.

 

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The Secret of Synchronicity

The Secret of Synchronicity

The Buddha questioned the necessity of suffering. He is represented as having withdrawn into pure detachment, and to me there has always been something partial about this interpretation of his teaching. No-mind, in my experience, is a very heartful place. I am drawn to the non-dualism of Tantra to balance that One-sidedness.

Compassion sits on the other side of the coin of detachment. When life hands you suffering, the choice is to forgive and forget or remember and suffer the past again and again because there is no time allocated in the present for the past.

So you have to feel your feelings in the now, get current, and go with the flow, of today, EVEN if you can see that this today is a cumulation of many past sufferings or feelings left unattended, you cannot attend to them anymore, that river has flown on, and in the river of NOW there is a feeling happening, an energy present, and by connecting to that energy, the current one, it will carry you along, to a future that is aligned because the present is aligned. That’s the secret of synchronicity.

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The Coming of Age of the Human

Humanity has reached a pinnacle of achievement and decadence. Anything is possible in this most of all possible worlds. The adolescent dreamer awakens to a nightmarish world of his own creation… a world of instant gratification, fast cars, low technology, and very little substance. I am the possible Hu-man in this equation waking up to my self-created destiny. I see that I am firmly caught in the webs of this world, and my desire for a simpler, easier way to be, a return to Innocence, is growing. I see that the peculiar task that has been appointed to me, to my generation, is to be a bridge between an old collapsing culture, and a new one that is still unformed and dark. For a while I must straddle both worlds, subject to death throes and birth pangs at once, and they are both most real in their intensity.
A New Age does not come by itself. It is a confluence of nature, and the steps are available for those who would dare to tread in deep waters. It is the Will of Man that creates the new age,   We have lived our entire lives in separation. In this separation lies the seed of the discontent that pervades humanity. The nuclear family has created the nuclear age. Our wills have become weak, as governments and computers have dictated to us more and more what we may and may not do. Statistics drown out dreams, numbers crunch visions.
Standing at the end of an Age, I carry with me all the corruption and wisdom of my history. And yet within me are the seeds of my own rebirth. Seeds that are being infused with new vitality, the God-force, New candles being lit on the guttering carcasses of the old. This is the gift and grace of this time. It allows me to delve into and clean out my depths, so I can see clearly, and am able to gaze again into the limpid pool of my Self. I en-vision my life anew.   I have gained the power of Self-reflection.
When I realize that I have never been saner or clearer, or more lucid than when I am in the vibration of Ecstasy, I realize that this is my dream, to be that way, to exist in God’s vibration and create, by reflection, the beauty in my own mind. This is the aspiration and the humble wish for new beginnings: The desire to feel again the Prime Ordeal.

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