When your name is as ubiquitous as Google, so woven into the very fabric of society that it is both a proper noun and a verb, it’s because you are constantly striving to grow and improve. Tenacity is a given. In Google’s desire to this end, they brought together thought leaders, captains of industry, and luminaries for meals, entertainment, and networking dialogue. To establish an ideal environment which fosters the important conversations needed to take place among these people, Google enlisted Jonathan Singer’s JSEM. Part of Google’s “Think Events” taking place around the world, JSEM was brought onboard by Google to produce the Canadian tour of these exclusive events. Leaders and experts from around the region convened to discuss trends, the best practices in marketing, and to explore the future of marketing in a mobile and AI-first world. Guests learned about and discussed the latest local consumer insights as well as product innovations to help build lasting brands and drive growth on digital and analog platforms. Enabling attendees to focus on the interaction of the event, JSEM produced a unique atmosphere with special menus, organic farm to table foods, local market entertainment, and a flawless aesthetic subtly branded with Google’s familiar red, blue, green, and yellow colours.
Google is the most coveted brand on the planet for any marketing agency to work with. Singer’s company sold Google on an elite experience for their attendees that was “turnkey” and JSEM was adamant about delivering what was expected. Among the three hundred guests, the Think Event included Google Head of Marketing Sophie Chester, L’Oréal CMO Dominique Decelles, Volkswagen Marketing VP Bruce Rosen, Celebrity Morning Show Host Terry DiMonte, Denis Vandal (VP Sponsorship, Air Canada), and Martin Spalding (VP Radio, Bell Media). Manifesting the perfect environment would mean impressing many of the biggest companies in the world as well as the main client. JSEM produced a different type of conference, one both awe inspiring and comforting. Key to this was providing guests with a taste of Montreal’s acclaimed culture as a foodie city with worldwide culinary appeal. Items ranging from smoked meat to the country’s famous poutine and even s’mores by campfire provided a full range of palette appeal. Dispersed among the days’ discussion were comedians, magicians, jazz musicians, and illusionists to keep the guests entertained.
This Google Think Event was about much more than stunning visuals and great food; the essence was the sharing of ideas. Google gathered people to discuss current trends in which the public interacts with technology, creating a sense of community in a shared experience. Jonathan Singer possesses the talent, connections, and vision to create a magical setting but equally important to Google is his intuition in regards to connection. He relates, “My key to creating a sense of community is to make sure everyone is comfortable. Keeping things real and approachable is what guests appreciate most and sets them at ease. People will have fun, be relaxed, and engaged if they are comfortable. For example, the dress code should always be casual or semi-formal. Any opportunity to wear jeans and a blazer, for men or women, is embraced. Sneakers instead of heels? Winner! I do the same with food by ensuring that the quality is 5-star but the menu is comfort food. This is where people relax, have an increased appetite, and don’t worry about the menu; the can just enjoy gourmet comfort food. A simple BBQ with fresh Maine lobster and filet mignon is always better received than an eccentric dish prepared in sauces with uniquely imported garnish. Keeping it simple, real, and comfortable ensures a relaxed happy crowd.” Singer and JSEM’s subsequent work producing for Google at prestigious events like the Toronto Int’l Film Festival, Canadian Music Week, and others is proof that Google values his insight and methodology.