The Illuminist Blog

The Challenge of Authenticity

Posted by Jon Thompson on December 28, 2015

If you’ve been looking closely at product labels recently, you may have noticed an onslaught of words such as “Artisan”, “Hand-crafted”, “Genuine”, and “Since 19XX.” While many companies have been enthusiastic about joining this trend, it’s important for companies to remember that these buzz words won’t have an impact when there’s not an authentic, shareable story in place to support these fashionable claims. Many brands are struggling to find ways to tout their “authentic” element, but there is a much larger, and more important component of authenticity than printing the word “authentic” or the year you were founded on a label. Consumers want to know the larger story behind the brand—a statement of purpose or values that resonates with them. Many brands are unaware of the authentic stories that are constantly unfolding in connection with their products—just waiting to be told in a compelling manner. Brands would do well to commit ongoing resources to the uncovering and sharing these narratives and by allowing the brand’s consumers be the heroes of these stories; letting their words and actions bring the story to life.

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Groceraunts and the Future of Grocery Shopping

Posted by Jon Thompson on December 01, 2015

Wandering through aisles bustling with shopping carts while passing hundreds of different brands of cookies, crackers and cereals may become a thing of the past. Today’s consumers are no longer looking for a one-stop shop and are underwhelmed by the traditional food shopping experience.

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How to Reach Consumers in a Content Saturated World

Posted by Jason Hammond on November 25, 2015

In a world filled with advertisements right and left, earning a consumer’s loyalty takes consistency and consideration. At the rate of content consumption among today’s consumers, achieving content personalization can seem like a daunting task. Finding a way to give everyone a unique brand experience is a challenge, but it’s worth the investment to deliver content that can truly connect with consumers on a much deeper level.

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4 Ways Millennials Have Changed the Alcoholic Beverage Industry

Posted by Jason Hammond on November 06, 2015

The habits and behaviors of millennials are having a tremendous affect on how we do business. Learn how the attitudes toward alcohol are shifting the industry.

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Let’s Create Something Better Than “Content”

Posted by Jon Thompson on October 23, 2015

When’s the last time you went to a theater to watch “content” or asked your friends if they’ve read any good “content” lately?

Certainly a lot of the material that falls under Branded Content or Content Marketing is worthy of the term: badly rehashed articles, self-serving sales and marketing materials, and tacky faux-dialogs with a social media audience. What if it had the same prestige as cinema, art, literature, or journalism? Attaining even a fraction of the prestige would be a worthwhile improvement.

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2015 Trend Report: The Millennial Shift

Posted by Jon Thompson on August 18, 2015

Millennials have now overtaken the short reign of Generation X. This generation has a different set of values and are looking for careers where they make more than just a paycheck - they want to make a difference. And as consumers, they're looking to purchase from brands that share their values.

Learn more about this shift and the many implications in our 16 page report.

The Millennial Shift Report
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New Offering: Inspiration to Impact Workshops

Posted by Jon Thompson on August 18, 2015

Bolster is now offering Inspiration to Impact workshops to help organizations inspire volunteerism and build a stronger culture of purpose. Building off of themes explored in the feature length documentary THE STARFISH THROWERS (named The Most Heartwarming Film of 2014 by the Huffington Post), these workshops are helping companies lead change from within.

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New Short Documentary: Pay it Forward

Posted by Jon Thompson on August 06, 2015

More and more studies show that Millennials are searching for deeper meaning in their work life. They want to be part of an organization they know is making a difference. If they can’t find this in their current job, more and more are leaving to launch businesses with a charitable model. Such is the case with Mason Wartman of Rosa’s Pizza.

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675,000 Views

Posted by Jon Thompson on January 27, 2015

Our short film about Minneapolis’ own Sandwich Saint Allan Law, featured in our feature length documentary The Starfish Throwers, went viral after being picked up by the Huffington Post. See the inspiring short at NationSwell.

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A Curious Journey

Posted by Jason Hammond on January 27, 2015

We are seeing a change in consumers. Their journey to purchasing is no longer linear. The limitless amount of information available at their finger tips makes the journey much more complex. Real-time ad buying and in-bound marketing tools, have caused audiences to self-segment based on the information they are seeking. Learn more about this shift in the consumer journey in our white paper, The Curious Journey.

View the Report

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The Purpose Purchase

Posted by Jon Thompson on August 26, 2014

Consumer's values are changing. They are demanding companies to support a cause for authentic reasons. Corporations must support causes because they truly want to make a meaningful impact in the communities that support their business. Learn more about consumer's demand for socially conscious brands in The Purpose Purchase. 
View the Report

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The Starfish Throwers in Minneapolis

Posted by Jon Thompson on August 24, 2014

What would you give to fight a battle you can never win?

Bolster Story Director Jesse Roesler’s award-winning documentary film, The Starfish Throwers, celebrates its first week-long theatrical run in Minneapolis on September 12-18 with The Film Society of Minneapolis St. Paul at St. Anthony Main Theatre—which coincides with Feeding America’s Hunger Action Month. The film is a Bolster co-production.

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