Retrospective: Spikes Asia 2014 (Day 1)

Last week, I had the pleasure of attending Spikes Asia 2014 in Singapore. It was insightful, spectacular and enriching all at the same time. This year, 1,000 delegates were present.

DelegatesDelegates attending a seminar.

This is the sixth Spikes Asia Festival of Creativity to date, with 39 seminars, 15 forums and 7 TechTalks featuring some of the most influential figures from the region and even internationally. Spikes Asia Awards had 18 categories this year, with the latest additions of Innovation and Healthcare. All entries were showcased at the center of the hall.

9Entries showcased at Spikes Asia 2014.

Held at Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre from 23rd to 26th of September, Spikes Asia boasted many innovative exhibits. There was the “Make Your Own Android” booth, where you can customise your own android. Then, it becomes digital with 3D printing and appears on the screen.


11 Combined


There were also Google Glass demonstrations, where delegates got to experience it firsthand. The venue also showcased YouTube ads leaderboard.


Another exhibit by Google was the Google cube, an experimental platform for interactive storytelling. It was developed by Google’s Creative Lab in Sydney and draws on WebGL and HTML technology.

Cube 13

Six films are wrapped around The Cube, and it is interactive as the viewer controls the structure. The audio is synchronised with the cube’s movement, and will switch from film to film as the viewer controls it.

Wednesday 24th September



To start off the seminars, Yannick Bolloré, Chairman and CEO of Havas, talked about his method of creating effective brand communication through collaboration between creativity, media and innovation.

HavasPhoto Credit: Spikes Asia

He revealed clients want to have agencies that collaborate with each other, to integrate all different aspect into one. In order to ensure agencies and operating units are integrated effectively, Yannick explains that everyone has to be aligned to the same objectives. He gathers the different teams of his company for global leadership meetings, creating shared identities. Yannick also shared that in the beginning, he had to eliminate feelings of competition within the company. Once he brought everyone together to work as one, they rapidly understood the benefits of collaboration. This led to increased client satisfaction and more business.

Yannick believes that the key in every industry is to “embrace the challenges ahead of us”. By adapting to the client’s needs, you can move forward and upwards. Havas is not very big in size having employed slightly over 16,000 people – which is mere in comparison to its competitors. However Yannick feels, “If you are too big, you cannot adapt well. You have inertia.”



2Photo Credit: FlavorPrint

Moving on, a unique innovation mentioned by R/GA during their seminar on Transformation. If you have ever run out of recipes for dinner, this is the site for you. FlavorPrint, created by McCormick, allows you to create a “FlavorPrint Profile” by simply clicking “like” or “dislike” buttons when different foods show up. They will then analyse this data and use their algorithm to recommend a recipe that you will like based on your FlavorPrint Profile. Check it out here, and create your profile today!



Melissa BarnesPhoto Credit: Spikes Asia

Melissa Barnes, Head of Global Brands, Twitter, shared with the huge crowd how a brand can connect with consumers on this social media platform. She started off by explaining how Twitter is different. It is real-time, public, conversational (you can see dialogues evolve) and widely distributed (stories that start on Twitter usually travel to different platforms).


Melissa showed the above matrix, and proceeded to explain the different planned and unplanned situations. For “everyday”, Melissa shared some insights on what people are talking about during different times of the day, and that brands can use this data to enter the Twitter conversation when it is most relevant. An example would be that a sports brand could tweet in the morning to reach the right target audience as #run has spikes every morning.

IMG_5693When people are talking about #run everyday on Twitter.

For “live”, Melissa talked about an experiment that Twitter conducted. They had two groups of people watching TV in separate rooms – one with Twitter on their phones and one without phones. Recently, there are talks that online conversations make people disregard offline interactions. However this experiment proved otherwise – the group of people who were connected to Twitter communicated more with each other, feeling more emotionally attached to whatever was happening.

Lastly, “campaign”, where brands using Twitter to make sure their campaigns do not stop. They want the conversations to continue, impressions to increase and essentially – to go viral. She gave the example of Axe’s #KissForPeace campaign, which used a huge digital screen in Times Square to spread the word.



Indy SahaPhoto Credit: Spikes Asia

Indy Saha, Director of Creative Strategy, Google Creative Lab, spoke about his team’s experiences trying to solve various problems that Google faced.

Below are two of those problems:

1. Web Speech API

Google needed to let people know about web speech API, which allows web applications to convert the user’s voice into text. They decided to deliver this knowledge with a spelling game.

spell up

Spell Up uses web speech API to get players to do various things like spell or pronounce words, to build up a tower.

Learn more about Spell Up here, or have a go at the game here!

2. Real-Time Collaboration through browser

Google wanted to share about real-time collaboration through the browser, and they combined these collaborations into something called JAM with chrome.


Players can make music on the site using various different technology collaborations e.g. CSS3, Websockets. All 19 instruments available to play were individually recorded. Additionally, players can invite their friends to create music together through the use of a simple shortlink.

Check out JAM with chrome here.

Read our coverage of day 2 and day 3!