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From YouTube tutorials to her own make-up line

Add / Remove YouTube regularly spawns flash-in-the-pan celebrities, but few have managed to build a profitable business out of their exposure. Lauren Luke is a rare exception—the British self-taught make-up guru built such a loyal following with her chatty tips on how to imitate celebrity looks, that she just launched her own line of cosmetics: […]

Car park users vote for stairwell fragrance

Add / Remove In this era of crowdsourcing and customisation, consumers are accustomed to having their say on matters large and small. Demonstrating that customer input can be applied to just about everything, a car park is giving its customers a say in how its stairwells smell. UK parking provider NCP recently adopted new technology […]

Niche photography business shoots bottles only, at easy prices

Add / Remove The pro photography scene might be in for a revival, thanks to a Yorkshire-based studio with a razor-sharp focus and web-based approach. Their name says it all: We Shoot Bottles. The studio takes photos of everything from gin to fabric softener. As long as it’s a bottle, they’ll take a professional shot […]

Customised playhouses, designed by children

Add / Remove Consumers in the market for a new children’s playhouse have a wide variety to choose from, with pint-sized properties ranging from thirty-dollar cardboard versions to uber-premium, custom-built chalets. A new product from the Netherlands takes the market one step further, allowing kids to become designers by creating their own one-of-a-kind playhouses. The […]

Users choose ads for their social web pages

Add / Remove Earlier this month, we wrote about Everyday Models, the company that lets consumers rent out various aspects of their lives for advertising purposes. Zeroing in more narrowly on the online profile is Bomeiti, a service from Catalist Group that lets social media users choose the ads that appear on their pages—and then […]

Lottery contest appeals to dog owners’ gravanity

Add / Remove Much the way parents love to show off their children, so dog owners tend to enjoy flaunting their canine companions. Tapping into that universal desire, a new contest from the Virginia Lottery promises to spotlight select players’ dogs on upcoming versions of its tickets. Virginia’s new Lucky Dog contest, which runs through […]

Quick tasks via SMS for phone users in the developing world

Add / Remove Both ShortTask and Amazon’s Mechanical Turk enable Internet-connected computer users to earn money performing quick tasks for organizations far and wide. Now, a new project aims to bring similar income opportunities to those in the developing world using the ubiquitous mobile phone. Targeting the more than 2 billion literate mobile phone subscribers […]

Free coffee for iPhone users at Swedish 7-Eleven

Add / Remove An iPhone application developed for 7-Eleven Sweden combines a store locator with coupons for a free coffee and biscotti. After downloading the app, users plug in their phone number and receive a unique coupon code on their iPhone. To claim their coffee, they just show the code to a 7-Eleven clerk; no […]

Lightweight electric bike targets urban commuters

Add / Remove A new lightweight electric bicycle with eco-iconic looks is firmly targeting would-be bicycle commuters who are put off by the thought of turning up to work in need of a shower. Gocycle, set to launch this month, was designed by former F1 design engineer Richard Thorpe, using an injection-molded, lightweight magnesium alloy […]

YouTube diaries help promote New Zealand

Add / Remove It wasn’t long ago that we covered the Best Job in the World contest from Australia’s Tourism Queensland, and now another popular destination has appeared on our radar for its own promotional innovation. Specifically, Tourism New Zealand has been using a mobile recording studio to collect international visitors’ impressions of the region […]

Southern tea cake: the new cupcake?

Add / Remove After all the attention cupcakes have received over the last few years, one could say they’ve had their share of time in the proverbial sun. We covered Fru Fru and Sprinkles back in 2007, but recently we were alerted to a new alternative: Tennessee T-Cakes. Billed as “the ultimate Southern confection,” Tennessee […]

More free (and enhanced) snail mail

Add / Remove They keep popping up: online-offline hybrids that combine electronic mail and snail mail . Latest to appear on our radar? Quabb, a German company that offers both a free and a paid option for sending postal mail. Users write their letter online or upload a scanned image of a handwritten text. Choosing […]

Lisbon store brings back forgotten favourites

Add / Remove Taking a firm stand in the face of globalization, A Vida Portuguesa has tracked down Portugal’s unique brands and opened a store dedicated to products that have resisted the urge to keep up with changing times. At the store, located in a former soap factory in Lisbon’s traditional-yet-hip neighbourhood of Chiado, customers […]

Contest replaces ad campaign for Nissan launch

Add / Remove If contests can be used to fill a job or promote a region of the world, why couldn’t they launch a car? That’s apparently the thinking at Nissan Canada, which recently kicked off a competition to select 50 people to win a free 2009 Nissan Cube. Indeed, Nissan Canada’s hypercube contest is […]

Latest eco-friendly branding tool: sea tagging

Add / Remove Following a multimillion pound refurbishment, and using little more than seawater, SEA LIFE London Aquarium ran a (close to) zero-impact advertising campaign in the streets of London earlier this week. You might recognize the masterminds behind the campaign: Curb, the media agency that uses natural materials to build brand awareness for its […]

Farmers’ market targets commuters with $5 bags

Add / Remove There’s no doubt eating locally grown food benefits both the community and the environment, but without regular visits to a farmers’ market, it can be difficult for consumers to make that happen. We’ve already covered a few innovative ways companies are helping homegrown produce get into consumers’ hands—delivery by bicycle, to name […]

Waitrose using bicycles & carts for greener grocery deliveries

Add / Remove British supermarket chain Waitrose dates back to the early 1900s, when bicycle and horse and cart were its chosen methods of delivery. Now—proving once again the old adage that everything that goes around comes around—much the same methods have returned as part of the company’s efforts to reduce its carbon footprint. Waitrose […]

ER service holds a patient’s place in line

Add / Remove It’s all too common for patients to be kept waiting in emergency rooms; the average wait for ER treatment in the United States is estimated at 3.2 hours. Earlier this month, Atlanta-based InQuickER announced the launch of a new service that allows patients with non life-threatening conditions to reduce their waiting time […]

Free software & cheaper calls for the unemployed

Add / Remove Giving is the new taking, as our sister site likes to say. And while we’ve covered several examples of the growing importance of generosity as a societal and business mindset, we hadn’t yet come across anything from the tech sector. But now we’ve found not just one but two such examples, courtesy […]