2018, what a year indeed. We opened our eyes for the first time as a company to a whole planet actively taking massive strides at being a kinder and more accepting place to live. In an effort to capture this magic our office sat down, shaking off the glow of holiday gluttony and that “one” drink on New Years, to reflect on the top moments of 2018 that deeply inspired us. Naturally, we looked inward to our very own values as the guide to our thoughts. We must admit in doing this we all had a “holy shit” moment when we realized what a prolific year it has been for us all.
Here is our official 2018 review inspired by our values:
DIVERSITY & HARMONY
We embrace all forms of diversity from ethnicity to experience. The process of building harmony can be messy but the results are powerful and more than worth it.
1.) Hollywood woke TFU to the fact that movie goers are craving stories that reflect global culture and represent difference in an authentic and somewhat epic way. Groundbreaking movies like Black Panther, Crazy Rich Asians and Oceans 8, which earned $700m, $250m and $300m at the box office respectively have finally proven that minority casts and women can deliver blockbuster returns in their own right.
2.) 2018 was the year of women in action. From #MeToo mobilizing deeper impact in every industry to Oprah’s speech at the Golden Globes to the female takeover of the Midterm elections to women driving in Saudi Arabia to the Royal Wedding of Megan and Harry we watched first after first that changed history.
3.) Culture creators used releases as platforms to speak their point-of-view not just sell albums. Meek Mill launched his new album “Championships” yet spent all his airtime talking about criminal justice reform. And the First Step Act was passed (a criminal justice reform bill).
AMBUSH WITH HUMANITY
We go out of our way to create a safe space for people to be vulnerable, creative and challenging. To be themselves, not who they think they ‘should’ be.
4.) Enough is enough. The students of Parkland became the faces of their generation as they rallied a nation and actively challenged government leaders and the NRA to protect our kids.
5.) We don’t have to think the same to love the same. Obama’s speech at John McCain’s funeral showed us how we don’t always have to see eye-to-eye to love and honor each other as human beings.
6.) Commercial beauty is a cage that must be broken. Korean women and men took a public stand against the extreme cultural beauty standards by starting the “Escape The Corset” movement.
Commerce is predicated on growth but not all that grows is good. We pursue growth that is sustainable for people, the planet and profit.
7.) Artist expression is limitless when you are Donald Glover. His release of “This is America” under Childish Gambino proved you can maintain creative integrity in a multitude of verticals.
8.) If we learned anything from the past 5 years…ignoring sexism and racism will completely and totally slaughter your brand. Starbucks swiftly responded to racism by closing over 8,000 of its stores on May 29 to conduct unconscious bias training of its employees.
9.) We didn’t know that butterflies could go through metamorphosis to become even more glorious butterflies until Michelle Obama. Her release of Becoming solidified her role as a cultural leader and not just the forever queen of the White House.
We see creativity as a mindset not a discipline. The art is in using it to create real value, with the entire company as our canvas.
10.) One Tweet can say everything. In releasing the Kaepernick campaign Nike ran the usual playbook — beautiful film, OOH, etc — but it was the Tweet from Kaepernick that gained the most media pick-up and consumer action in both conversation and dollars spent.
11.) Community fueled show development and releases created a flywheel amplification effect for Netflix. From To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before to Bird Box you might as well live under a rock if you weren’t in on the memes.
12.) In response to Trump’s “shit hole countries” comment Airbnb focused on promoting travel to Haiti, El Salvador and Africa. Continuing the #weaccept narrative.