Not hard sell: hard help

We spoke a lot last year about brands that facilitate their audiences. We think it's a winning strategy.

Canon knows that Instagram's success means everyone is now a photographer. Unfortunately for Canon though, most of us capture our masterpieces using our smartphones, not a Canon. So the brand worked out where it could fit in with this phenomenon and decided it would help us take better photos using other people's products, before it suggested we try its own line of professional cameras. Not immediately bringing in any revenue, but Good Things Come To Those Who Wait.

Real Time Tips are shown on digital billboards in famously photographed locations around New York City. The tips change depending on location and light/weather conditions, and are published as a website for regular reference in the future.

Shouting from the rooftops is too brash nowadays, especially on social. And if it's long been known that providing value to the consumer is the way to get your voice heard, then evolving into a brand whose communications are genuinely helpful—perhaps even an invaluable resource, to the right people—is perhaps a next stage worth considering. And if any of these now-improved amateurs decide: "You know what, I reckon I'm pretty good at this photography malarkey!", a Canon will surely be a consideration.

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