In 2012 we wanted to take our Storytelling Expedition Around the World to the next level. But to do this, we felt we needed to brainstorm with an outsider expert: someone with an objective perspective, insight into international markets and experience on the level of both agencies and brands.
“What about Marc Capra?” Anouk said. “He worked for JWT in New York and was the president of JWT in Bangkok before. He does branding and strategy for companies around the world, from the U.S. to Hong Kong.”
“And he started his own Brazilian lifestyle brand, Sol de Janeiro,” I added. “He’s the perfect person to take our Storytelling Expedition from good to great. Let’s ask Marc!”
Two months later we are at Marc’s home in Morumbi, Sao Paulo, finishing up our final brainstorming session.
“So,” says Marc as he gets up from the large dining room table that is by now covered in notes and sketches. He paces up and down and then turns to us. “Our most important conclusion is that you guys need to focus on Next World hubs. There is a global shift in economic power from the G7 to the BRICS and the MIKT (Mexico, Indonesia, Korea and Turkey). In order to succeed and to expand your project you have to find a curator in each of the regions.”
Anouk and I are sitting next to each other at the dining room table and suddenly we feel like we’re back in the school benches. Marc gives us a stern look at starts enumerating the requirements our curators should meet.
He starts enumerating: “A curator needs to have extensive branding knowledge; he has to have a strong established network among local brands; international experience is a plus… And he has to be curious about new developments and have solid knowledge about local culture… I’m not going to lie, it’s not going to be easy to find these people.”
Despite the Marc’s strict tone, a little smile has appeared on Anouk’s face. “Actually,” she says, “I know somebody who perfectly fits the bill, in setting up this network of curators. Right here in Sao Paulo.”
Marc looks at Anouk with a puzzled air. “Really? Who?” he asks.
“Umm, he’s standing right in front me,” Anouk says, now with a laugh. “Do you want to be our curator for Brazil?”
“Me?” Marc responds, with a tinge of surprise but also a twinkle in his eyes. “Ha… Well, it might not be a bad idea, not a bad idea at all… I certainly fit the requirements!”
“And you’re handsome and intelligent to boot!” Anouk adds with a teasing tone, “who could ask for more?”
Marc puts on a fake air of disappointment. “Only if you change that to ‘very’ intelligent. Then I’ll take you up on your offer,” he says.
“Deal!” Anouk says, as she gets up and walks over to shake on it.
“Deal!” Marc replies, with a grin.12 July,2013