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Scott Goodson

Founder & Chairman  / StrawberryFrog


In the 80s, Scott's first international client, Ericsson, played cupid between him and a sweet muse called technology. Meanwhile, he became the lead writer for the global Ericsson brand.

The 80s were followed by the discovery of Internet, ownership of an ad agency in Sweden and a few years as Executive Creative Director at JWT Canada.

In 1999, Scott returned to Europe to found StrawberryFrog, with offices in New York, Amsterdam and Sao Paulo.

In January this year he published his first book: "Uprising - How to Build a Brand".

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Q: Tell us about “Uprising”.

A: Unless you’ve been on another planet the past year with all the social uprisings and corporate backlashes, you already know that we are living in a new age: the Age of Uprisings. Putting aside the political aspects of this story to look at the marketing side of it (I can’t help it, I’m a marketer), I wrote a book to explore this global phenomenon and I had to wonder: Going forward, how might this affect the way advertisers think about fundamental questions like "What do we stand for?" And "Who do we stand with?"

If brands haven’t fully answered those questions, they’d better. Because if there’s anything we’ve learned in recent months it’s that we’re living in an Age of Uprisings. And the uprisings extend beyond politics or social issues, spilling into the world of commerce. Today, if you do something that ticks people off, they’re going to rise up against you.

They have the will and the passion and the social media tools to wreak havoc on your brand or organization. And it may be in response to something you haven’t even done yourself. You may simply be associated, through advertising or some other form of support, with the offending party.

In my new book Uprising I look at 50 recent movement marketing cases. I spoke with a Harvard Prof. And I worry that some brands may react hiding heads in the sand and not getting involved in any issues; play it safe. In the book I explore how marketers react to all of this, going forward. In my new book Uprising, I interrogate this new world for marketers, adfolk, marketing students, tech innovators, entrepreneurs. Knowing that the world around has become so volatile, should they respond by becoming more cautious, by trying to stay far way from anything that could ever, in any way, be perceived as controversial?

Trouble is, that’s also the quickest way to make a brand invisible and irrelevant. If you play it safe in today’s boisterous marketing environment, well, it’s true that you won’t have crowds rising up against you - they’ll be too busy ignoring you.

That’s why I think marketers will need to do something more counter-intuitive: In these volatile times, brands actually should become more willing to take a stand. They should become more activist, not less. But they should do so in a thoughtful, considered way that is more likely to put them on the same side of passionate issues as their customers are.

A movement strategy starts with figuring out what your brand’s core values are: What are you for? What are you against? Traditionally, marketers have been reluctant to take a stand against anything because it can feel controversial or divisive. But the truth is, some of the boldest marketers have been doing this kind of thing successfully for quite a while (think of Apple, which in its early days came out strongly against conformity and the "Big Brother" world of computing). And today, more than ever, consumers are looking for brands that share their values and outlook. They see those values expressed clearly in brands like, say, IBM (Smarter Planet),Mahindra (Rise) and Zappos. But too many brands don’t seem to stand for anything. And so they end up being defined and judged - and sometimes found guilty - by association

Q: What’s the one thing you feel happy if people remember about your book

A: No one cares about your brand. It is not loved. It is not important. It is not invited anywhere but to your company picnic. That is, unless you can make the brand relevant to people's lives. To the way they understand things. If your brand speaks in a voice that resonates inside them, and if it speaks to a truth that they recognize, then suddenly people want to share that brand with their friends, and their friends and their friends, and it's like a fire spreading. A fire that began with a true understanding for the cultural shift that now feeds and informs it, and a true respect for the people who nurture, start and control that shift. No one cares about your brand unless you find a way to speak to why you care about it. Only then will you start an uprising. Only then.

Q: Who should read your book?

A: Marketing students, CMOs, brand managers, CEOs, community organizers, tech innovators, entrepreneurs, passionate people who have an idea to change the world.

Q: Why do you call StrawberryFrog a Cultural Movement agency?

A: We identify, crystallize, curate and spark MASS movements for brands. Once you have a movement you can do anything ina fragmenting media environment.

Q: Why would anyone want to work at StrawberryFrog?

A: To be a Frog not a dinosaur, to have fun and do work like thisthis, this, this or this.

Q: Is there something in particular that you’re looking for when hiring new people?

A: Smart, fun, excellence, great pedigree, unbeholden to the old systems and agencies of the past, trailblazers, energy creators, attitude, fragrant ideas

Q: What inspires you?


My family (two boys).

Getting to work with creativity and problem solving. 

Virgin forests and jungles. 

Skiing on Mt. Whistler when the snow's just landed.

People who know how to laugh.


BMW - "The Hire"

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