The Creative Economy
The Creative Economy is written by John Anthony Howkins, who is a British author and speaker on the Creative Industries. The revised edition was published in 2013 and contains a number of useful insights and statistics concerning the creative industries.
5 Key Takeaways Concepts
- Fame is a sunk cost - The production cost is small and the rewards are unlimited in terms of the ability to charge more for one's own services and generate opportunity.
- Only a tiny fraction of creative output ever results in high levels of success, less than 1% generally.
- Reverse branding - Where a brand instils itself in a consumers mind so powerfully that they cannot imagine buying anything else and will pay a premium to display it. When this happens, the consumer is paying the company to advertise the brand.
- Pay attention before money - People pay attention before they pay money, it's our job to make people interested and trust our brand before they're prepared to part with money.
- The purpose of finding the right niche is to be able to develop the right relationships - who do you wan too work with? Is your niche opening you up to work with the kind of relationships you want to build?
- Beau Brummell - Born in 1778 - an iconic figure in Regency England and the arbiter of mens fashion.
- Herbert Simon - An American political scientist, economist, sociologist and computer scientist.
- Kevin Kelly - Founder and executive editor of wired magazine.
- Hermann Vaske - Film director and interviewer.
- David Carson - David Carson is an American graphic designer, art director and surfer.
- David Putnam - Is a British film producer and educator. He sits on the Labour benches.
- Soedjatmoko - Soedjatmoko, familiarly called Bung Koko, was an Indonesian intellectual and diplomat
- Bo Yang - A Chinese poet, essayist and historian based in Taiwan. He is also regarded as a social critic.
- Charles Handy - Charles Handy CBE is an Irish author/philosopher specialising in organisational behaviour and management.
- Robert Metcalfe - Robert Melancton "Bob" Metcalfe is an electrical engineer who co-invented Ethernet.
- Damien Hirst - Damien Steven Hirst is an English artist, entrepreneur, and art collector.
- Tracey Emin - Tracey Emin, is a contemporary artist known for her autobiographical artwork.
- Gary Hume - English Artist
- Kate Bond & Morgan Lloyd (illustrators) and founders of you me bum bum train.
- Hermann Hauser - Austrian-born entrepreneur who is primarily associated with Silicon Fen in England
FOSS- Free and open source software. The pioneer of Foss was Richard Stallman in the early 1980's.
Brands - First originated from branding animals, 'Brand' is an anglo-saxon word 'to burn'.
Quants - Bright young maths grads, their talents are 'quantise analysis and algorithms.
Picks & Gold - Gold is data and picks is mathematics.
The Majors - Hollywoods 6 biggest film studios, Universal, Paramount, Walt Disney, Warner Bros, Columbia and Fox.
Arbiter - A person who settles a dispute or has ultimate authority in a matter / A person whose views or actions have influence in a particular sphere.
- In 2010 over 70,000 albums were released in america compared to 30,000 in the 1970's, but 94% of those albums sold less than 1000 units, and 80% sold less than 100 units. At the other end of the scale, an elite 350 titles, under 1%, generated 70% of the markets total revenue.
- in 2012 - 20% of Kindles best selling ebooks in 2012 were self published. However, the lis of self published books that fail to make any mark at all is extremely long.
- The ranking for creative economies if adjusted for population is America, Britain, Japan, Germany, France & Brazil.
- The global industry produces about 3500 films a year.
- In 2012 Hollywoods average production budget was 90 Million with an additional 40Million going on print and video advertising.
- There's roughly 3500 films produced globally a year
- European companies produced (pre brexit) produced 1280 films of which 370 were documentaries.
- The entertainment Alliance says 69% of american heads of households play games and the average age of a game player is now 33.
- In Britain, over 90% of companies in arts, culture, design and media employ four or fewer people.
Things To Look Up
- Madagascan rosy periwinkle - seems to limit diabetes and can be used as a powerful cancer treatment.
- Flowers of war - Christian Bale film that did well in China.
- Crouching tiger hidden Dragon, most successful foreign film ever in america.
- Equilibration Point. - The point at which the marginal cost meets marginal revenue/
- A creative mind is an adaptive mind, continually learning and adapting, trying to understand and improve.
- People pay as much attention if not more than they pay money. It is revealing that we use the word to pay attention and to pay money. and we always pay attention before we pay money. - Kevin Kelly
- It may be pointless anyway to worry about degrees of novelty because it is difficult to trace origins accurately. The world is too vast and too fertile, literally too full of ideas, for us to be able to say definitely if any particular ideas original.
- Not all those who wander are lost.
- The purpose of finding the right niche is to be able to develop the right relationships.
- A preference for a way of working determines the choice of sector more often than a choice of sector determines a way of working.
- Each sector has its own way of evaluating ideas and deciding what to do next. It is hard to succeed unless you are not only familiar with how the people around you make decisions but also accept their criteria as being fair and reasonable.
- Mad inventors are not mad because they have mad ideas but because they ignore other people's ideas. They ignore these two judges. They do not judge what they are doing and they do not care what everyone else is doing. They choose freedom above everything else but it is not enough. We need to manage that freedom purposefully.
- It is rational for sellers to forego revenues if they put a higher value other market reputations, or for a buyer to pay more for novelty.
- One possible response is to try and make every idea a hit. This is fine as a means of motivating oneself but gives no guidance as to how much effort put behind each idea, nor how to balance quality with the need for quantity; nor how to squeeze as much as possible out of the occasional success while mitigating the impact of the many failures. And it does rather ignore reality. Hits are rare.
- The aim of the modern brand is to instil itself in a consumers mind so powerfully that they cannot imagine buying anything else and indeed will pay pay a premium to display it. When this happens, the consumer is paying the company to advertise the brand ( the reverse of the normal relationship).
- Sellers need to ask themselves: How much do I have to give away for free to persuade someone to buy or to recommend? There is one exception this conundrum. Fans buy everything on trust. Partly because they enjoyed the previous experiences but also because being a fan means buying everything. So sellers have to ask. How do I make someone a fan?
For assessing if someone is creatively minded.
- Do you dream, do you have fantasies?
- Do you think about how things might be different?
- Do you often think of a better way of doing something?
- Do you want to think of a better way?
- Do you take pride in doing things your own way?
10 Rules for success:
1. invent yourself: Create a unique closer of personal talents. own your image, manage it. Never stop learning, learn the rules, manage the rules, break the rules.
2. Put the priority on ideas, not on data: Train your imagination to build a personal balance sheet of intellectual capital. Understand patents, copywrite and trademarks.
3. Be nomadic: Nomads are at home in every country. Leaders must combine a love of people and a capacity for aloofness. Likewise, creatives need both solitude and the crowd. Thinking alone and working together- Charles Handy
4.Define yourself by your own thinking, not by the job site somebody else has given you.
5. Learn endlessly. Be Curious. Borrow. Innovate. Remember, a new idea is often two old ideas meeting for the first time. Use networks, if you cannot find the right network, start it.
6. Exploit fame and celebrity. The production costs are small (fame is a sunk cost) and the rewards are virtually unlimited in terms of the ability to charge more for one's own services and revitalise a life that is momentarily stuck.
7. Treat the virtual as real and vice versa. Online life is merely another dimension of every day life. DO not judge reality by whether it is based in reality or truth. Mix reality and dreams to create your own future.
8. Be kind. Kindness is a mark of success. People treat each other as they themselves are treated.
9. Admire success openly. You will never win if you cannot loose.
10. Be very ambitious, go boldly.
11. Have fun. Dance like no one is looking. Break your own rules.
Consumers four golden demands
- What to do.
- When to do so.
- Wherever they are.
- To pay in ways they think is sensible.
Clusters (key areas of innovation in certain industries)
Most 'clusters' are invisible to outsiders
London's garment district - North of Oxford Street
Music Stores - Denmark Street
TV Production companies - Fitzrovia
Useful Links & Downloads
- Eureka - Greek word for 'I have it'.
Creative Copyright Law.
Many creative people are forced to sell their rights at the beginning of their career ignorer to get much needed cash. This means giving up their best opportunity to change from being a freelance for hire to building up a company with capital assets.
Copyright prevents others from copying. Copyright currently lasts 70 years past the point of death. Text falls under copyright law, industrial process under patent law and company name falls within trademark law.
Patent - prevents others from making. Patents last for 20 years. Patents have to be registered by country.
Only the original patent holder can claim a patent in another country, and claim it's novelty. You can see the rights to another country, but if a country starts producing a patented product, the original patent holders can take out a patent in that country to try and stop that competitor.
Trademarks - Trademarks last as long as the right holder is in business. Although domain names (URL's) were not conceived as trademarks, international law increasingly treats them as such, and so a prior registration of a trademark invalidates a rival claim to to use the same name for a website address.
In muslim countries, Sharia law says the property of ones brain is the property of God. Hindu traditions say the imagination is shared with the divine and cannot be independently owned.
Grimm brother, published snow white in 1812. Copyright ran out in 1937 and Disney made it a huge hit. Disney's copyright ran out in 2008 but they trademarked it instead so no one can ever reproduce anything snow white related despite the original being owned by the Grimm brothers.
David Patriarch, director of 2011 HBO hit, Game of Thrones, which was reportedly the most illegally downloaded series ever, believes 'illegal downloads don't matter because such shows thrive on cultural buzz and the social commentary they generate.
Towards the end of his life Maslow split the high-minded but possibly self obsessed idea of fulfilment into knowledge (he used the word cognition) and beauty, (aesthetics). I refer to these two fulfilment needs as Maslow's Twin Peaks.