"  Circle Culture
MARCH 22 – 01


Content Creation & Messaging

This piece of work was produced for our long standing client Leaps by Bayer for the Boston Hub Week, a Boston-based festival eclectically fusing art, science and technology. We have developed the messaging for their innovative and extraordinary escape game “Breaking Through Impossible”. Escape games build immersive 3D worlds commonly featuring a blend of both analogue and digital elements in which teams are confronted with a key challenge that they need to jointly find a solution to. Much of what is aimed to achieve is not yet possible. Setbacks and failures are to be expected while pursuing such ambitious targets. The „Breaking Through Impossible“ Escape Game is designed to reflect the culture that defines the Leaps by Bayer organization, and to inspire people to experience what it means and feels like to be part of a biotech breakthrough (leap). The escape game simulates the rush of landing a biotech moonshot to inspire targets to continue their pursuits of seemingly impossible breakthroughs.
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JAN 22 – 02

Work Snapshot from Circle Culture Consulting

Brand & Messaging Development

In one of our latest BioTech consulting projects, we traveled to the countryside of Copenhagen to conduct a Brand & Messaging workshop with the entire team of Chromologics, a synthetic biology company. Chromologics is a Danish biotech spin-out from the DTU - Technical University of Denmark. They have developed a fungal biotech platform for the production of novel, natural colorants. Prior to the workshop, we conducted in-depth interviews with the main stakeholders to gain their insights and perspectives on the brand as well as understand/recognize the competitive advantage and mid- to long-term goals of Chromologics. The input received was decoded and prepared as stimulus material for the workshop, where we applied our CI steering tool „the TAS system“, the Brand Circle and Messaging Pyramid. We were thrilled to witness the successful outcome of our workshop program and how it aligned a diverse and ambitious team made up of scientists, business developers, and product strategists towards a common goal and how to most importantly achieve this goal together.
"  Circle Culture
NOV 21 – 02


Nike Membership Insights

Our long-standing client Nike trusted us, once again, with deep diving into the very nature, meaning and communication consequences of brand membership. What actually is membership in branding and advertising contexts? How can we best define it? And what are the implications in terms of communication angles, channel management, user experience as well as the handling of data, privacy, and transparency? The objective was to recruit 24 young adults, both Nike members and non-Nike members with an affinity to the brand though, to bring them, in different compositions, to a table and engage with them on the overarching issue of membership. Instead of reproducing known assumptions on these topics, we aimed at the uncompromised views and perspectives of the younger generation. Head over to our work section to learn more.
"  Circle Culture
OCT 21 – 01

Book with regained Momentum

The Art of Gathering

Since our early days back in 2001, there has been a red thread running through our DNA at Circle Culture Consulting. It’s the pivotal meaning that we attach to physical gatherings as a key resource to create meaningful encounters with our clients, partners, and friends, but also as a central tool to generate unparalleled qualitative insights capable of making all the difference for our clients within the biotech, beauty, and lifestyle industries. It is also in this light that the book “The Art of Gathering – How we meet and why it matters” written by the facilitator and MIT graduate Priya Parker has particularly caught our eye. Parker strongly advocates for endowing gatherings of all kinds – whether it be professional or personal meetings – with a specific purpose, carefully selected, unique guests and disruptive, alternative surroundings to create resonating and ideally even transformative experiences. The way in which we define, approach, and perform our proprietary in-depth interviews and workshops with leading minds from our global thinkers network truly resonates with Parker’s inspiring spirit and proposed structure. But also Parker's focus on physical gatherings reflects our plead for offline- as opposed to digital meet-ups: Gathering in the real world with brilliant people around a specific and thoughtful purpose allows us to serve our clients as a kind of cultural seismograph detecting nascent trends with the potential to shape both our present and future thinking. If you wish to learn more about the very art – and maybe even science – of gathering with a purpose, we invite you to take a closer look at Parker’s manifesto.
"  Circle Culture
FEB 22 – 02

Connecting with the customer through narratives, myths, and metaphors

When brand leadership is all about the story

Today’s media landscape that brands need to aptly navigate has been becoming ever more multifaceted in recent years. Not only are media channels increasingly fragmented and subject to extremely fast shifts, especially with regard to social media, but a whole new layer of complexity has been added through the emergence of the metaverse. The differentiating factor that brands can and should leverage here to help inform, orientate and, above all, inspire the customer does not lie on the product or category side, but in the mastery of storytelling. If executed with a thorough understanding of what resonates with the customer, storytelling in itself can establish, enhance, and constantly nurture the brand value. The pivotal role of storytelling to the building of aspirational brands is also reflected in the concept of Added Luxury Value (ALV). The key idea behind this notion is the fact that legacy brands do not focus primarily on their product or category, but on connecting with the customer through narratives, myths, and metaphors. Key players within the biotech sector increasingly are currently pushing into B2C markets as well, since they have understood the importance of telling meaningful stories to making a difference in customer awareness. A perfect case in point is provided by Flagship Pioneer, a Boston-based biotech investment fund that has, amongst others, financially backed Moderna. Through podcasts, editorials and overall inspiring content, they have mastered the art of storytelling to an extent where their actual product offering almost comes to the background. This seemingly soft strategy proves to be extremely effective in leveraging further funds or, in the case of brands, in propelling sales. Thanks to its longstanding experience in helping leading lifestyle brands like Nike or Red Bull produce aspirational stories to be shared with their consumers, Circle Culture Consulting has successfully consulted some of the most promising biotech companies on their brand positioning, with a special focus being put on developing truly differentiating stories. Link to the corresponding article:
"  Circle Culture
JAN 22 – 01

Global Thinkers

An excerpt from thinkers with whom we have generated insights for a wide variety of projects

We realised early that true lateral thinking does not originate within one team of people. It takes diverse external stimulus to break current believes and tap into future/new world thinking. Our Global Thinkers Network has developed over the past 25 years into an unrivaled pool of visionary entrepreneurs, environmentalists, space engineers, MIT & Harvard professors, architects, biotech designers, best-seller authors, athletes, scientists, philosophers, designers and international renowned artists. We approach each of our challenges by developing new thinking with a strategically selected group of visionary thinkers. Each one is a leading expert in their field and perfectly positioned to enable us to achieve both brand differentiation and product/service relevance. The network has grown organically and is constantly growing through our global initiatives and cultural engagements as well as through our ongoing global expert insight projects for clients such as Nike, Apple, Beiersdorf and Leaps. Today, it encompasses over 100 people.
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NOV 21 – 01


The thin line between transparency and information overload

In supporting our clients and food tech companies like Joyn Bio and Unfold Bio on their branding and messaging strategies, we had the pleasure to deep dive into the crucial question of how to best tell their rather tech-loaded stories to the media and (end) consumer. The overarching issue consisted in reconciling the need to explain the somewhat complex technology at work with the attempt to tell an appealing, emotionally resonating, and appetizing story. The challenge of successful food tech communications is currently gaining further momentum as ever more brands try to revolutionize and expand the conventional product offerings within the meat, dairy, and bakery categories by plant- and/or cell-based alternatives. Yet, gaining a foothold in the fiercely competitive consumer market for food is a difficult endeavor – something which the dairy-free ice cream line “Brave Robot” offered by the alternative dairy protein manufacturer Perfect Day needed to learn the hard way. Since they provided misleading information about the ice cream’s ingredients on its packaging, they had to undergo a rebranding (from “animal free dairy” to “for a delicious future”) and react to upset or at least insecure consumers shortly after their initial market launch. As we are currently dealing, for the Danish biotech start-up Chromologics, with the exact issue of how to best frame technological contexts in relation to food, we observe a huge opportunity for these new players to contribute to a radical shift towards uncompromised transparency within their relationship with the end consumers. We are convinced though that only those will persevere who will master the very thin line between truthfulness and an information overload respectively deep emotional resonance. Head over to Food Dive if you wish to further delve into the topic:
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SEP 21 – 01

Pictures say more than words

The new must-have work environment

We experienced the new spirit and power of BioLabs (= Biological Factories) when we worked with Ginkgo Bioworks and Leaps by Bayer on the brand, messaging and CI development of their synthetic biology venture Joyn Bio in 2018 (in this post you see the imagery from our photo shooting with the Berlin based photographer Gene Glover for the press and communication material and webpage). This is what the young hi-fly talents are drawn and thrilled to - every CEO of a physical goods company should think of adapting BioTech to their business - it will be just a matter of time when the USA will present us the first CBO (Chief Biology Officer). Back in 2018 Ginkgo Bioworks had 3 labs running just installing their 4th one - now they run 6 labs already. In order to know what they do their, just listen to the CEO Jason Kelly talking to Bill Frist in this story (it appears between the photo slideshow if you click on fullscreen).