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Our MWC 2017 predictions

MWC is one of the biggest shows of the year. It’s the time when the big device makers come together in Barcelona to one up each other with their latest shiny black rectangles.

In recent years, announcements have been spread out either side of the show to avoid the huge volume of news and get some clear air. So, whilst Samsung’s S8 is coming post show and LG’s G6 has already peaked its head out from behind the curtains, there’s still loads to see.

Here’s what we expect to see, want to see and what we think has no chance of making an appearance.

A sure thing:

We’ve already seen LG’s G6. It’s touting an unusually tall screen with an 18:9 aspect ratio, expect to find out why at their conference on February 26th.

Sony are announcing a whole suite of devices, covering everything from budget phones through to top spec flagships like the Xperia XZ.

Huawei too will be updating their flagship P9, we assume P10? Last year they focused on a unique Leica camera that combines a B&W camera with a colour shooter for better photos. The P10 will push this even further.

Motorola are also announcing some new devices with a press conference scheduled for the Sunday before the show.

My personal favourite is that we’re expecting new Nokia phones! Specifically, an Android flagship with some strong specs that they (and I) hope can bring them back to the fore.

Hoping for:

Bendy phones. Every year someone shows off a new foldable screen prototype, this year we want to see someone be mad enough to put it into a real phone.

More Daydream. Right now, there are only two devices for Google’s Daydream platform – the Pixel and Moto Z. We’d love to see some more to go alongside the super comfy view headset.

A phone with decent battery life. It’s been said by enough tech reporters, but we’d love to see someone ship a phone that doesn’t sacrifice battery life to be just a bit thinner. Who can do an Apple and have the ‘courage’ to do that?

Don’t expect:

Modular devices. I think we can all agree that modular devices aren’t a goer. The G5’s strange removable bottom panel has already been confirmed to be removed from the G6. If Motorola’s Z is seeing a similar pick up of its accessories, we think it might be bye bye Moto for the Moto Mods platform.

Micro USB ports. It’s all about USB C now, and for any manufacturer to release a flagship with the old port would just be embarrassing.

Most importantly, don’t expect to get away with not eating ham. Iberico for days in Barca. It looks to be an exciting show; we’ll check in again in a couple of weeks and see just how right we were.

Te veo en españa!

 


#DynamoDoes CES 2017

Ah, CES – another January, another batch of exciting tech, another return flight with broken bodies (but thankfully, not spirits).

Some things don’t change, but often the lineup of Dynamo attendees does – this time, it was Heather and myself taking up the challenge of dazzling lights and sleepless nights.

Here’s our highlights from the show this year – sadly, getting sprayed with champagne by Lil’ John at Hakkasan didn’t quite make the cut, mostly because Heather is intent on sending him a dry cleaning bill…

Concept Cars

The Mercedes Benz EQ concept car

Top billing had to be, much like 2016, automotive tech. CES has, for the last couple of years, been touted to overtake industry events such the Detroit Auto Show, and 2017 was seen by many as that tipping point. NVIDIA were the stars of the show here, making waves with their partnership with Mercedes on the concept car EQ (pictured), which drew crowds thanks to its sophisticated blend of electro wizardry and aesthetics.

NVIDIA also showcased their partnership with Audi, and revealed their joint commitment to delivering a self-driving car by 2020, complete with fully integrated AI and facial recognition. With many other companies reluctant to commit to a delivery date for their concepts, this partnership boldly revealing such a close date has showed us that the true ‘cars of the future’ are much closer than previously imagined.

Homer, you were ahead of your time, buddy.

World’s Fair

This year saw a much more global feel to previous shows, with 41% of companies exhibiting hailing from China. In addition, this year all Chinese companies weren’t confined to a specific section of the show floor, but rather all booths were intermingled. Also, CES 2017 saw a large influx of French companies, with around 240 hardware companies from the region showing their wares, and actually making up a third of the population of Eureka Park. The trend of growing international diversity year on year at the show is a fascinating development, and from an agency perspective, certainly creates ‘areas to watch’ in terms of innovation and exciting new businesses.

Eureka Park

Although the LVCC played host to the household names and multi-million dollar projects, Eureka Park was, personally, the most exciting part of the show. Cool new ideas – some frivolous, some with potentially useful global impact – were in abundance, with smaller, eager teams excited to show off their game-changing concepts. The techniques each company adopted (in some or all cases) in order to stand out as the next big thing can be broken down into simple categories:

  1. Pushing the capabilities of a current technology e.g. enhanced graphics, improved UI, use of peripherals (particularly in VR, with the use of haptics)
  2. Modifying a current technology to produce different user cases, and subsequently, our understanding of said technologies’ potential eg. a fireplace controlled by music – music driven objects are nothing new, but to be seen with fire was quite the thing, and certainly got us thinking about more capabilities of sound-driven technology
  3. Creating a visual, product driven solution to a previously nebulous concept/software driven project, thus driving forward consumer understanding – a great example of this is in the below picture, which we’ll leave you with. I jumped out of my skin when I saw this 3D face scanning booth (and the people at the booth got a good laugh at my expense).

Proving that heads on spikes that can be futuristic as well as historical.

We all know about face scanning, but to see a very realistic head on a spike is both disconcerting and intriguing – especially when you realise the model it’s based on (and the creator) is there watching your reaction! He was nice enough to pose for a photo though, so I didn’t feel completely embarrassed.

So we’re already looking forward to next year’s show now, and whether we’ll be driving more underwater 4K cameras, or learning more about pyjamas that energise you while you sleep, I’m confident that whichever capacity we’ll be attending in, and whoever we’re working with, it’ll certainly be memorable (apart from the blurry evening parties bit).


Dynamo wins Gold for PRWeek’s Best Places to Work

 

In what is a great start to 2017, we’re thrilled to have been picked as the best agency to work for in the UK, in PRWeek’s Best Places to Work (under 30 employee’s category). The judges praised our approach to diversity, training and flexible working – all things we strive to be leaders in. We were the first agency in the UK to publish our gender pay gap, as well as the first to offer our employees unlimited holidays.

We have huge respect for the work of Third City and Manifest, the two other agencies shortlisted, and we’re proud to be recognised amongst them.

For the full story, visit PRWeek here.

Owen Adkins
Owen Adkins
Categories: Awards, Culture, tags: ,

The year in pictures #Dynamo2016

2016 was another busy year for us here at Dynamo PR. Not only did we celebrate our fifth birthday, but we also launched our US office, located in Redwood City, California.

It was also an eventful year for our clients. There’s no way we could fit all of the launches, campaigns and events into one blog post, but here is a snapshot of the past 12 months at Dynamo HQ.

We have been racking up those air miles. Not only did we attend CES, MWC and IFA, but we also hopped on the plane to Austin to support Makeblock at SXSW.

We helped Adam & Eve with a winning campaign based on the timely research into athlete abstinence, which was released during the Olympics.

Detailed view of a sprinter in the starting blocks

Our very own Lewis Durkin had the most unusual afternoon of 2016 when he and Duncan James of the Blue fame took Duncan’s adorable pooch for a walk and a photo shoot – all for Gala Bingo’s “UK’s favourite dog walk” campaign.

13912617_10154266064517534_8191601068894746373_n

Let’s not forget about crowdfunding. We helped launch a myriad of exciting campaigns, including ZapBox, a $30 mixed reality headset from Zappar.

boy-with-mars-probe

We introduced #DynamoDoes. What does Dynamo do, you might be wondering? Well, every third Friday of the month we get together to tuck into a feast of tapas, Chinese food, curries – you name it. It’s not all just food though, because #DynamoDoes get quite adventurous as well. For example, we spent an evening learning free-running with the one and only Sebastien Foucan.

13466102_10157301903660227_4658804204236238899_n

And last but certainly not least is the launch of Dynamo Silicon Valley.

usa

Don’t hesitate to drop us a line if you’d like to discuss how we could work together next year!

Happy holidays from the Dynamo team!

Daria Gerasimova
Daria Gerasimova
Categories: General

KNOMO picks Dynamo for UK PR support

We are so excited to announce that we’re now working with British bag and accessories brand, KNOMO, to lead the business’ ongoing media relations going into 2017. Designed to cater to the workers of the future who are increasingly carrying out their day jobs on the move, KNOMO has pioneered a stylish ecosystem of bags and accessories that perfectly blends technology and fashion.

Kicking off with the announcement of KNOMO’s £3 million funding round, Dynamo will be continuing media relations for consumer and fashion audiences, with a digital and technology focus. Here’s what Howard Harrison, the CEO at KNOMO, had to say:

“Dynamo, with their proven experience in the consumer sector and technology expertise were the clear choice as we came to select an agency. Their team, as an extension of our own, will help us to take KNOMO to the next level of awareness in fashion and consumer tech industries.”

The KNOMO team will be led by Erin Rigby, Senior Account Manager here at Dynamo. She added, “KNOMO is leading the way in creating accessories for the workers of the future. They are not only making an impact here in London but across the pond in the US now. We’re pleased to be working with KNOMO at such an exciting time for them”.

Keep your eyes peeled for upcoming KNOMO features!

Daria Gerasimova
Daria Gerasimova
Categories: Client, Wins

Path to PR – Dan O’Connor

Hi, I’m Dan and I’m the new hire here at Dynamo. I’m taking over the blog this week to tell you a little bit about how I made my journey to PR.

Like any good origin story, my journey to Dynamo starts way back when I was a kid. I’ve been crazy about all things techy since day one – in fact, one of my earliest memories involves bugging my dad to let me play on his IBM Thinkpad. It was actually his work computer, so there wasn’t much in terms of games, but I remember being thrilled to go on Netscape and mess around on Yahooligans – a big shout out to anyone who remembers or used this! This interest in technology never really faded as I grew up, in fact, it’s probably gotten worse the older I’ve gotten; now that I’ve actually got disposable income to spend on gadgets and gizmos.

When I turned 17, I started my very own website reviewing video games. Whilst I’d love to say it was because I wanted to develop my skills as a writer, the more honest reason is that I wanted free games and figured this would be a good way of getting them (it was)! I taught myself HTML, CSS and very basic PHP, then I used WordPress as a backend and I grew that site from just me and a couple mates blogging to a volunteer team of 20 with a readership of about 50,000 people every month.

After I got my offer to study English and American Studies at university, I decided to shut down the website. I realised I wanted to spend my free time doing something that didn’t involve being sat in my room constantly, and I ended up spending a lot of time helping run a theatre. After university ended, I found myself working for a digital marketing firm in Nottingham. I missed writing a lot, especially about technology, so I applied for a job here at Dynamo after seeing Nick Morey tweet about the opening (who I had met 5 years earlier thanks to my website!)

After a telephone interview, I was invited in to interview with Peter. I was amazed that we spent most the interview talking about my website and current tech trends. Unlike other interviews, Peter didn’t really seem to care about my degree all that much, he was much more interested in what I had done in my spare time. We then chatted about where we thought the VR industry was heading and he offered me an internship on the spot.

The internship was really useful for getting a handle on the basics of PR. I completed press lists, helped with admin and just generally provided support to a number of accounts. I was given enough responsibility so that I was challenged, but I never felt like I was being put out of my depth. A few weeks after the internship finished, Dynamo offered me a job as a Junior Account Exec! It’s been great because I’ve been able to use my previous experience in digital marketing in my approach to PR, meaning that I’m bringing something different to the team. I also still know a fair few people who are still in the video game journalism industry, thanks to my website, which is also incredibly useful for making sure I reach out to the right people!

Joining Dynamo has allowed me to combine a lot of my passions into one job, and it’s pretty easy to see how everything I’ve done has helped me make the jump into the world of PR. Although it wasn’t something I originally thought about going into, there are so many bits that tie into my previous experiences, it’s a natural fit. If you’re thinking about going into PR, I’d absolutely say go for it. I was a little worried before starting about not having much experience in the industry, but Dynamo are always on the lookout for someone who can bring something different to the table too.

Dan O'Connor
Dan O'Connor
Categories: New Hires

Will social media cause the end of the world?

Social media week ©

In short, no. Let’s explore further though.

This question and similar were present at Social Media Week 2016, alongside the overarching theme of the ‘invisible hand of social media’, referring to algorithms, bots and next-level targeting that follows us around our favourite websites like a friend that you thought you liked, but now can’t stand. It’s annoying right? But, not the leading cause for the demise of the world as we know it, surely? Well, no. Something unnerving is happening though.

Let’s talk about Brexit (again). Cast your mind back to the way that you voted, in or out. Have a think about how you made your decision. For many of us, that included chatting to friends and colleagues, reading the papers on our commute, googling “what happens if we leave/stay” and of course, checking our social news feeds.

Around 2 billion people are on Facebook, checking it 14ish times a day. With the latest algorithms, when you check your feed you’ll only see posts from your fav people. Great, right? No. This is awful. Most the time you surround yourself offline and online with people you like. People who have the same values and opinions as you. How many of you culled your Facebook when you saw people with the opposing view, slapped there as their status? Or were shocked when the vote didn’t go the way everyone you know wanted?

This is the equivalent of turning up at a meeting, telling everyone your idea and everyone saying “Exactly what I thought, nothing to add. Let’s go for it.”. Whilst, this sounds beautiful (it really does), imagine that happening every single meeting. It’s so one-sided and unchallenging. Whilst this emperor-has-no-clothes style is fine when you share personal updates, it’s scary when wider issues are shared in just one light.

Facebook is incredible and as a Digital marketer, I’m a fan. However, they are moving to be an all consuming platform that you’ll never need to leave, the ‘new internet’ was a comment heard last week. Let’s just hope they continue to address the issue of curation, as they seem to be.

Who’s the real saviour in this end of the world scenario? Firstly, you. Everyone has a responsibility to themselves at the least to explore multiple angles before making a decision.

Secondly, Twitter or one of the newer social media platforms like Snapchat. This might be the moment where the rest of the attendees from Social Media Week disagree, as it’s been widely reported that Twitter’s growth is struggling. However, it remains an organic channel, with limited curation and censorship (Hi, Donald Trump) and frankly, the one place you can access breaking news and a flurry of different opinions.

Image credit: © socialmediaweek.org


Dynamo reveals its pay gap for second year running

This week the PRCA has struck a massive win for Gender equality in the PR industry by making it a requirement of its CMS standard for agencies to report their pay gap. You can read their full report here or blog post.

In 2016 we find it genuinely shocking that there exists such a large pay gap between male and female members of staff, even when they are in the exact same roles. The Fawcett Society says the overall gap for full-time workers in any industry is currently 13.9%. PRWeek has found in the PR industry that men overall earn £10,000 more than women in the same roles.

Dynamo has always been mindful of ensuring equal pay for equal work. In September 2015 we became one of the first (if not, the first) consultancy to report our pay gap. It was a statement of intent for our internal company culture, but we’ve always made great efforts to maintain high standards, implement best practice, and tried to be a trendsetter for the PR industry.

So one year on, where is our pay gap?

“Comparing like for like, in any particular job title role, on average men’s salaries are only 0.35% higher than women’s salaries at Dynamo PR”

This means that unlike the PR industry, where men overall earn £10,000 more than women in the same roles, at Dynamo men on average earn just £100 per year more than women.

This doesn’t necessarily indicate bias as we have salary bands for every role, and staff are at different levels of skills and experience within this band. As long as male staff are slightly more experienced than female staff in each job title this is an acceptable figure. This is a reduction in the pay gap from last year when it was 0.50%.

Secondly, we found:

“Overall, women’s salaries are 9.1% higher than men’s salaries”

This would normally indicate a significant bias towards pay for women, however we do currently have more women in senior roles than men, and given the near parity of salaries within job titles this is acceptable.

So there we are, one year on and we’re still keeping track. We don’t think we should be just one of a few agencies to report on pay gaps, so we want to say how proud we are to be members of the PRCA and part of an industry that is changing for the better.

Peter Bowles
Peter Bowles
Categories: Comment, Culture

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