Chapter 2

Next-Generation Storytelling

In fall 2012, Microsoft launched Windows 8, a radical makeover of the company’s operating system (OS) designed for an increasingly multiscreen world. Its slick, colorful, tile-based interface that works so well on touchscreens generated a lot of fanfare, as did the effort to make an OS that created a consistent experience across a desktop or notebook computer, a mobile phone, and a tablet.

A less frequently told part of the Windows 8 story was Microsoft’s efforts to bring advertisers into the fold early on and get them thinking about how brands could be integrated into the slate of apps to be embedded inside the operating system. At launch there were five such ads ready to go. Pepperidge Farm slipped an ad for Goldfish crackers into a Slacker Radio app; Chrysler’s Jeep ad went into My AccuWeather. The takeaway lessons for large enterprises is that unless you are part of these platform releases, you won’t get the lessons of how to adapt to new platforms. When you consider that Microsoft’s desktop platform still drives over 80 percent of the earth’s computers, building on new versions of this platform has to be mission critical.1

We submit that what we just described to you is a microcosm of the future of creativity. The next generation of storytelling is about expressing brands through technology. This is the key to inspiring and engaging consumers and getting them to help you tell your brand story. As Frank Rose wrote in The Art of Immersion, ...

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