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The Art of Storytelling

Some of us have been saying it all along. Peter Guber, author of the new book Tell to Win, argues that

…humans simply aren’t moved to action by “data dumps,” dense PowerPoint slides, or spreadsheets packed with figures. People are moved by emotion. The best way to emotionally connect other people to our agenda begins with “Once upon a time…”

This applies as much to how you communicate with a client as it does to the consumer. Believe it or not, they are both humans driven by many of the same things in life, needing similar inspiration. A client needs to be as enchanted as the consumer. Or provoked. Or shocked. Or whatever your advertising sets out to do. Ideally, don’t feed back meaningless information about target market demographics, rather show a video you’ve created that’s intriguingly shot and gets said market to speak their mind. See where they live, hear their music, make the connection. Always give more than you receive. Bring the brief to life. Whether you use poetry, film, photography, music, dance or a combination of all of these, your presentation can be as interesting as, hopefully, the creative ideas you are hoping to sell.

Pecha-Kucha Durban: Volume 9

The 13th of February 2013 saw Durban’s 9th Pecha-Kucha and was kindly hosted by Inscape College one of Durban’s newest creative colleges. AG!LE has proudly been behind the event for over 3 years. If we lost you at Pecha-Kucha, let us explain: Pecha-Kucha is a global phenomenon that happens in over 600 cities around the world. The format is simple: you get a whole lot of interesting speakers together give them a mic, and ask them prepare to a presentation consisting of 20 images. Since passionate people have a tendency to carry on and on and on, each of the images are timed to 20 seconds, making for a presentation that is 6 minutes and 40 seconds long.

This was our very first outdoors event and luckily the weather played its part. After imbibing some liquid inspiration and filling up on some Afro’s chicken the audience sat down to watch our first speaker Jamie Lee Gibbon who shared about what Inscape College do in pruning the next generation of creatives. Following on was Omelga Mthiyane a film producer whose movies have featured across the world including the Sundance Film Festival. Omelga shared some of her process and the amazing locations her films have taken her. Christopher Reid then shed some light on the ever changing world of trends and the role trends play in society. Just in case anyone thought the evening was heading into a congenial direction, Trevor Kleinhuis took to the stage and shook up things up by taking us on a tumultuous journey of drugs, HIV and lies. But what’s an ideas share without an academic? Evolutionary biologist Corrie Schoeman enthusiastically threw off the covers on the evolutionary arms race going on between bats and moths, his ability to take complex subject matter and articulate them in clear and simple was characteristic of a great lecturer. What is evident from this Pecha-Kucha and those before, is that Durban is a diverse city filled with much talent. We cannot wait for the next one.

Three Days of Brilliance


Three full days of brilliance, irreverence, difference, experimentation, crafting and, believe or not in the presence of all that, humility. More than 30 of some of the greatest innovators and influencers in the world came together at the Design Indaba to generously share their experiences and philosophies about design. For the second-year running, AG!LE hosted the Durban simulcast of the Design Indaba, bringing into one room top illustrators, graphic designers, writers, architects, videographers, web masters and many of the other creative luminaries and hopefuls of Durban.
If you want to find out more and gain enough inspiration to last a lifetime, check out our Design Indaba Durban Facebook page. The event may have come and gone this year but great design never ends.


2013 sees the role of mobile growing even stronger than before, in both Africa and the rest of the world.  Consumers continue to look to their mobile devices to help them maximise every moment of their day. According to a survey of adult US smartphone owners, 63% of women and 73% of men can’t go an hour without checking their phone (Harris Interactive, June 2012). The focus is on cramming more content, connection, consumption or simply more fun into every interaction.

Climbing on the bandwagon, Cape Town’s Taxi Rank is embracing the mobile revolution in a consumer-centric way.

According to

Consumers can simply enter their pick-up and drop-off destinations to compare estimated quotes from multiple taxi companies. Once they select a quote, the taxi company then sends a text message confirming the pick-up time and cost. Taxi Rank’s mobile site can automatically pinpoint your location if your phone supports browser-based geo-location, so there’s no need to provide a pick-up point.


Saint-Francis Tohlang is an independent insight consultant and trend analyst. He provides South African trend observations to, as well as insight observations to stakeholders such as Flux Trends, HDI Youth Marketeers, Lovelife, and Savino Del Bene. He holds an MA in Media from UCT and continues to research in the areas of media markets and strategies, consumer culture and popular subcultures.


Design Indaba: Young Designers Simulcast


AG!LE is proud, once again, to be hosting the Durban YDS, the simulcast of the Design Indaba. We strongly encourage anyone seeking creative inspiration to attend. Despite the YDS’s name (Young Designer’s Simulcast), it is aimed at all ages and all creative sectors – architecture, music, interior design, graphic design, illustration, urban and landscape design, fashion, advertising, film and animation, etc. All are welcome.

As the foremost creative platform in South Africa, Design Indaba is committed to investing in design education and promoting the future of the creative industries.

As such, Design Indaba’s YDS gives students and professionals the opportunity to attend a live broadcast of the annual Design Indaba Conference in a second auditorium, at a discounted rate.

Once again, there’s a fantastic line-up of speakers, so of the greatest global influencers –

Daan Roosegaarde, artist and innovator who describes his work as “techno-poetry”.

Matthew Carter, type designer who has designed some of the most widely recognised fonts in the world, such as Verdana, Tahoma and Georgia.

Paula Scher & Seymour Chwast, iconic graphic designers. Scher’s images have come to be visually identified with the cultural life of New York City. Chwast is a founding partner of the celebrated Push Pin Studios, whose distinct style has had a worldwide influence on contemporary visual communications.

John Maeda, artist, graphic designer, computer scientist, educator, named as one of the 75 most influential people of the 21st century by Esquire magazine.

Sir John Hegarty , phenomenal creative influencer, discovered Brad Pitt, brought music to the forefront in Levi’s commercials, and coined the now-famous “Vorsprung Durch Technik” phrase for Audi.

Marian Bantjes, respected graphic designer, typographer and artist, known for her custom typography, detailed and lovingly precise vector art, handwork, patterning and ornamentation.

Jessica Hische, letterer, illustrator and “internetter”, dedicated to designs that are unique and playful.

Excited? Then book your seat now. Directly through Computicket or Design Indaba.

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As an agency, it’s imperative that we are aware of trends, both global and local. Awareness is just the start, though. We then need to interpret the trends in a way that is relevant and useful to the various brands and services in our portfolio, making sure that these brands and services can take full advantage of the changes around us.

What emerged as a 2012 trend, which was the meteoric growth in use of mobile and tablets, will continue to influence both consumer and brand behaviour in 2013. In addition, 2013 will reveal several other consumer trends. We’ll discuss each of them separately, and refine them and add to them as the year progresses and our research and experience reveals more.



Pecha Kucha Durban


We will also be hosting our first OUTDOOR Pecha Kucha. The event will take place on the 13th February.

2013 (Wednesday evening) at the Inscape Design College (109 Montpelier rd, Morningside.)

PK Vol.9