Inspiring Us

Inspiring us

This part of the blog will share what’s inspiring us at the moment, in our industry, but also simply things happening in the world, new products, content, anything we love. If you want to send in ideas, we’d love your contributions too, please email: [email protected].

Industry

  • Our client Spirit Media worked on a project with Charity Calm “Comedy Against Living Miserably”, a series of three hour long events for Dave with Mint & Co working on talent agreements for the many well known comedians talking about feeling sad when your career is built on making people laugh.
  • We love Knickerbockerglory’s ethos of sharing profits with staff and charity: “earnings from shows are shared between staff and also equally between freelancers based on length of service that year (whether they are a runner or a director), and every year we donate a percentage of our profits to a different charity chosen by our production teams.  This year we donated £100,000 to charity, split equally between The Shepherds Bush Families Project who help local homeless families and refugees, Jessie May Children’s Hospice, Friends of Hammersmith Hospital, Focus 12 and Ellenor hospice, Gravesend.”

Posted: Friday 7 February 2020


 

Collaboration & Community

  • As we are pretty much a remote workforce here at Mint & Co, we were interested in this article in Harvard Business Review looking at the challenges and rewards of making friends with coworkers in remote organisations. Whilst technology is a great enabler, it gave us food for thought to consider how best we can bring our virtual team together beyond our online training and social meet ups.
  • As well as our long running relationships with Lewis Silkin for employment, corporate and trade mark referrals for our clients, and Reviewed & Cleared for compliance, we are also working with Kepler Wolf to refer specialist tech and ad tech work and Level Law for sports-related work, as they are excellent in these spaces. We love to work with the best in their field for niche areas that require specialist skills, and firms who share our ethos and values.

Posted: Friday 7 February 2020


Content

  • Books featured heavily in Mint HQ’s Christmas Stockings. We loved Hilary and Chelsea Clinton’s, The Book of Gutsy Women – favourite stories of courage and resilience. What started out as a conversation between mother and daughter has become a story of hope and inspiration drawn from around the world. Historian Mary Beard makes an appearance as do countless other women who’ve broken the mold, opened closed doors and ‘looked fear in the face and persevered’ like Malala Yousafzai.
  • We snuggled down on Sunday nights to Philip Pullman’s adaptation of his fantasy trilogy, His Dark Materials. James McEvoy and Ruth Wilson were brilliant and so was Dafne Keen who played the young orphan heroine, Lyra Belacqua in search of her missing friend and a quest to learn more about the mysterious ‘Dust’. Catch it on iplayer.

  • We loved the Oscar nominated ‘Marriage Story’ on Netflix. This compassionate film looks at a marriage unravelling and a family trying to stay together, told from both sides. In Noah Baumbach’s film we were entranced by Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver as the uncoupling couple and the awesome Laura Dern as Scarlet’s ball-breaking attorney (who just won a BAFTA for supporting actress).
  • The Boy, The Fox, The Mole and a Horse is an inspirational story told through words and pictures from The Spectator’s illustrator, Charlie Mackesy. What started out life as a conversation about what courage is with his friend – Bear Grylls – has become a beautiful bestseller. Every bookshelf needs this. We’re avid followers on Insta for a hit of warm heartedness into our days.
  • All About Eve’s podcast series has taught us so much about inspirational women we should know or know more about.
  • Some of the Mint & Co HQ team saw Tina – The Tina Turner Musical – and learnt lots about her early life with Ike Turner but it was the songs that were the real stars.
  • Alice Guy-Blaché was a pioneer female filmmaker in the early 1900s but we’d never heard of her until Pamela Green’s documentary, Be Natural, which was shown in selective cinemas on 17 Jan. Alice rose from secretary to leading a film studio in her native France and was the first to make a narrative film,  use close ups and synchronised music.
  • The essence of Fearne Cotton’s Happy podcast series is captured in a book by the same name. Happy – Finding joy in every day and letting go of perfect is a great way to start the new year and a helpful way to make sure any resolutions made can be stuck to!

Happy reading and Watching! x

Posted: Friday 7 February 2020


Industry

  • This summer’s Team USA vs England match for the Women’s World Cup was the most watched live programme this summer, with 11.7 UK viewers tuning in. Congrats ladies!
  • Downton Abbey actress Victoria Emslie recently announced the launch of Primetime, a new database that aims to support women working above the line and below the line in film. She announced the launch at Cannes as part of the drive to encourage more hiring of women in film.
  • We’re looking forward to seeing the results of the Film and TV Charity and The Work Foundation who recently conducted a survey into mental health in the industry. Recently, contributors to reality TV shows have been in the spotlight, but the industry is now also starting to focus on the less visible workforce behind the scenes in TV and film. So far, insights have been gathered from more than 2,000 calls to the Film & Television Charity’s recently launched industry Support Line for men and women in the industry – providing 24/7 advice and support on issues such as debt, depression and harassment. The support line was launched with funding from the BFI. The Work Foundation will share the results in the Autumn.

  • San Fran-based Patreon (where fans donate to watch videos) are looking for ways to make financial loans to digital artists to kick off their creative ventures and providing creators with another way to monetise on the platform by collecting subscription revenues in exchange for perks. They also have HR and health insurance in their sights with a view to ‘compensating artists fairly for their work … to fund people who are making the internet more lively and interesting’. It’s great to see a platform looking out for their creatives.
  • We’ve been interested to learn of the Feminista Film Festival who’s mission is to inspire women and girls and connect them to female role models.

Their beliefs:

  • That stories about inspiring women and girls need a stronger voice.
  • The documentary film is a uniquely inspirational and engaging form of storytelling.
  • A film festival dedicated to inspiring stories about women and girls can spark connections and motivate all of us to think and act differently.

Catch their inspiring forthcoming festival soon on 27th-28th September at The Soho Hotel, London.

Posted: Sunday 15 September 2019


Collaboration & Community

  • According to a report from JLL in the US, over 30 percent of all office space will be considered “flexible” or spaces that offer short-term leases and co-working. We are firm believers in flexible working here at Mint & Co.
  • Remote working is certainly on the way up, but is it always executed well? This article about SnapTravel’s tips on how to create a first class experience for employees working remotely was an interesting read. At Mint & Co, we’re always thinking about how we can make remote working work best, and we have implemented a mix of elements from a slack platform for chat and knowhow sharing, zoom training calls and physical social meet ups, to team email comms and consultant one-one-ones.

  • We heard about the launch of the Government’s Flexi-job website which aims to help parents to balance work and family life – “the breakfast rush, packed lunches and school runs”. Great to see the government recognising the challenges and backing the benefits of flexible-working.
  • Jacinda Ardern has been an inspiration during her brief tenure as Prime Minister of New Zealand. While she is known for being open and likeable, her critics argue this makes her a weak leader. Have a watch of why Prime Minister Ardern believes empathy is one of her greatest tools as a leader.

Posted: Sunday 15 September 2019


Content

  • Big Little Lies was back for a much long-awaited second season this summer and the mothers of Monterey (or the Monterey Five as they’re now known) were joined by yet another huge star. Just when we thought it couldn’t get any darker, along came Meryl Streep. To sweeten the gap between this series and the inevitable third one, the bonus episode that sees the cast sat around discussing the characters, storylines, interactions with each other, Hollywood and the me too movement is well worth a watch.
  • We read about documentary film ‘For Sama’ and we’re looking forward to watching. Filmed by a Syrian mother, framed as a letter to her young daughter Sama, and pieced together with phone video footage, it shows first hand how their love and lives have survived, thus far, the destruction and war in Aleppo. It sounds a tough one to watch but a totally unique view of war and love through Waad’s life.
  • Congratulations to Ursula MacFarlane for her recent BBC2 Harvey Weinstein documentary, and huge respect and admiration to all the brave women who spoke out about his monstrous behaviour.
  • We couldn’t bag theatre tickets, but we’re off to catch Phoebe Waller-Bridge at the cinema via a live screening from the National Theatre, really almost as good! It should sate our withdrawal symptoms after the end of series 2 for a little while…
  • Last week saw Jesy Nelson from Little Mix talking about her experience of online bullying in a BBC Three programme Odd One Out, where she explained how comments on social media had led her to attempt suicide. She met others who’d struggled with online trolls as well as the mother of one girl for whom the bullying had become all too much. Emily Atack tweeted afterwards that the film should be shown in all schools, and we agree.

Posted: Sunday 15 September 2019


Just Because

  • If you’re feeling like a dose of design and culture, Coal Drops Yard/Granary Square area is hosting the London Design Festival 14-22nd September. We particularly like the sound of the Maya Magal Jewellry workshops and the Botanical Boys terranium workshops. We love this area, and might have to pop into Other Stories on the way back for some retail therapy too, not to mention Caravan for brunch.
  • On the topic of greenery and wellbeing, Forest Bathing (shinrin-yoku) appears to be the next big thing for soothing our overworked souls, there are several on eventbrite, including the ones run by Carina Greenwood in Forest of Dean.

  • Maisy swears there isn’t a plant she can’t kill. However a recent gift from Patch has helped her discover her mini-green thumb. It comes with a two-week lesson on how to keep plants alive and so far so good!

Posted: Sunday 15 September 2019


Industry

Posted: Monday 8 April 2019


Collaboration & Community

  • We at Mint & Co have long touted our belief in flexible working, but that doesn’t mean that other industries have caught on, namely childcare. However that has changed with a new venture called, Cuckooz Nest. Cuckooz Nest, started by female founders Charlie Rosier and Fabienne O’Neill, offers flexible childcare alongside their workspace. You can choose how many hours you’d like on a week to week basis. One employee at Mint & Co recently started bringing her son there and has nothing but great things to say about the nursery, the workspace and the community at Cuckooz Nest.

  • Have you considered getting into software programming but have no idea where to start? General Assembly just announced a new scholarship, See Her Excel, aimed at encouraging women into programming and data science courses.
  • In line with Mint & Co’s ethos, built on a strong basis of trust and belief in our own remote team, a poll in March by www.employeebenefits.co.uk found 73% of people felt flexible working has become the new norm and 80% would choose a role that offered this over one that didn’t – regardless of the benefits package.

Posted: Monday 8 April 2019


Financial Times Panel about ‘What does balance mean to you’ on International Women’s Day

By Nicola Hartley, CEO and Founder

  • I was invited to speak on the panel at the ‘pink paper’ Financial Times, curated by FT Women UK. Panel members included return-to-work mums from the FT and the former Havas Media chief exec leading their mental health in the workplace initiative. The panel was a very open discussion of individual experiences of finding balance as a working parent, taking up flexible working within the FT and looking after the emotional wellbeing of staff. I talked about setting up Mint & Co as a fully remote and flexible working business, and how that was important to my company’s ethos of allowing consultants to choose a work style that suits their lives.
  • Mint & Co is a modern business affairs practice, seeking to disrupt the way our services have historically been provided in the legal and business affairs industry. We all work flexibly and remotely at times that suit our lives best. Mint & Co really lends itself to former lawyers who have had children and don’t want to go back to the traditional way of working, which limits their family time and involves lengthy commutes and long office hours. But we have consultants without children too who really value working to their own timetable around other passions and interests in life.

As a follow up to the panel, I wanted to share some (rather personal!) thoughts on my experiences of balance (and in-balance!):

There are apparently over 15m posts on insta with the hashtag #balance. We all want to achieve it, but how we all define it is so personal to our own lives. I admit, I have struggled at times to feel balanced- having a growing business, being a mother to a little girl, wanting to do both things well, and as a result I regularly put all things before my own wellbeing. I had a period of near burnout at the end of the first year of Mint & Co, working 70+ hr weeks, not finding time to exercise or eat well, not sleeping well because I went from screen to bed without a proper wind-down routine. I realised it had to change, and as well as taking on support for the business side of things, I also needed to find more balance to create a life away from work. I basically needed to live as well as work! As the business grows, there are still periods where I have to work more hours than I’d like, but now having a more focused self-care routine means that I (mostly) manage to retain that all-important ‘balance’.

For me, the key to balance and feeling balanced is self-care for my own mental and physical wellbeing. I think it’s the foundation of balance of all other things in life. I don’t believe we can’t feel balanced unless we are centred and happy in ourselves. Some practical things I’ve put in place over the last 12 months to help me on this journey have been as follows. Different things work for different people, but I’ve found making these things a regular part of the week all really help to keep me feeling centered-

*Carving out time to exercise 3 times a week including yoga which is the best form of relaxation for me (recently tried yin yoga which felt like I’d just had a 60 minute massage! Highly recommend)

*Meditating 10 mins per day

*Seeing a nutritionist to advise on a diet that helps with stress levels, hormone balance, energy levels

*Ensuring that I regularly see friends and family

*Having 2 set afternoons a week with my daughter

*Seeing a life coach every 2-3 months

*Having a proper wind down routine that is at least 1 hour before bed – no tech/screens/work. Reading an actual paperback and having a bath several times a week. Epsom Salts and lavender oil are a revelation!

*Batching time for emails in the calendar, and separate time for set tasks – i.e. not being on email ‘all day’ which can be really draining (and switching off those dreaded email notifications which can cause anxiety when they ping every few minutes!)

Posted: Monday 8 April 2019


Content

  • Have you seen Working Mom’s yet on Netflix because we have! This tongue in cheek series shows mothers returning to work after maternity leave. Working Moms leaves no taboo topic undiscussed and will have you laughing while nodding along knowingly.
  • We may be biased with our love for female founders but have you heard Sallie Krawchek, CEO of Ellevest, on the podcast Masters of Scale? Sallie saw a huge opportunity in Wall Street’s blindside when it came to women and she built a business around that. Have a listen if you haven’t already!

 

  • Best selling author and TED speaker Dr Brené Brown who showed us the importance of vulnerability comes to Netflix discussing what it takes to choose courage over comfort in a culture defined by scarcity, fear and uncertainty. We’ll be giving it a watch. Available now.
  • In a world that’s always on the hunt for happiness, Emily Esfahani Smith provides a reassuring TED talk on why there’s more to life by finding meaning, something beyond yourself and developing the best you. Think of it as yoga for your mind.
  • We’re looking forward to checking out SIX – the latest musical hit – celebrating girl power with tales of historical heartbreak from Henry VIII’s six wives who step up to sing us through their journey from queens to pop princesses.

Posted: Monday 8 April 2019


  • Are you tired of waiting for April showers to bring May flowers? Have a look at Laura Gee, a Hackney based artist, to make spring come early.
  • ChromaYoga, the yoga studio that combines colours, sounds and scents into each class, has recently opened its second studio. Which class is on your list to try?
  • British artist Tracy Emin, is known for her sensational exhibitions, her latest is on at the White Cube in Bermondsey. See it while you can!
  • Okay so when Lynsey here at Mint & Co (EA extraordinaire) told us about these cool pencils from Sprout the first reaction was why? Sprouts are the devil’s own vegetables aren’t they? Sorry sprout lovers. But it turns out the sprout refers to the sustainability side of their stationary and the second life the pencil has. Once it’s too short for writing, it can be planted and hey presto turns into a beautiful herb, flower or vegetable.
  • With Easter around the corner we’re loving the new range of Hotel Chocolat’s luxury eggs. First up they’re in extra thick shells (what a brilliant idea) and you can choose from a range of new fillings this year from Rocky Road to our favourite, the dark chocolate, filled with truffles, pralines and caramels. Looks too good to eat but we reckon we could force ourselves.
  • And if all this just feels too wholesome and good for you, then take some inspiration from comedian Russell Kane’s podcast series which returned last month and lives on the BBC Sounds app. Evil Genius sees Russell joined by three guests from the world of comedy where he sets out to change the way we see heroes and villains. Join the panel in deciding whether the subjects are Evil or Genius. The back catalogue features Margaret Thatcher to Mother Theresa and Joan Crawford to James Brown and many more in between. Expect some surprises!

Posted: Monday 8 April 2019


Industry

  • Power to the people, watch the Iceland Christmas Ad here that was not cleared for broadcast: https://www.iceland.co.uk/environment/. Despite this, it’s a powerful message about palm oil, deforestation and the impact on Orangutans and amazing that it’s become the most watched ad this Christmas.
  • A perfect feel-good antidote to the negative news we often read, Google’s Year in Search function has become a programme in its own right showcasing what came up when the world searched for “good”” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6aFdEhEZQjE

Posted: Tuesday 18 December 2018


Collaboration & Community

  • Our co-work space Allbright offers a fantastic FREE 10 week course to women. It’s completed digitally, remotely, flexibly (like Mint & Co’s service!) and there are 2 different pathways- “Doing it for yourself” is for aspiring or early stage female founders, and “Smashing the Glass Ceiling” is for women who are looking to develop professionally. Apply here https://www.allbrightcollective.com/about-academy/
  • In our last Blog we wrote about The Allbright, and we can’t wait to check out the new LA site when it opens in 2019. In the meantime, we’ve also been working at 42 Acres, another groundbreaking co-work space. 42 Acres is a green oasis in the heart of Shoreditch, dedicated to conscious co-working. With a sister Wellness retreat in Somerset, 42 Acres, and lunchtime breathwork/yoga/meditation, there’s something very special about spending a working day here (and the tangible impact on stress reduction!)
  • We regularly collaborate with Reviewed and Cleared, headed up by David Burgess and many of our clients now work with Reviewed and Cleared for content compliance. We value their pragmatic and creative approach.
  • We volunteered this year at St Martin In the Fields to support the BBC Radio 4 Christmas Appeal, with all money raised helping homeless people who receive shelter, food, help and advice at The Connection at St Martin’s. There are still spots available to help out. Find out more here. https://www.smitfc.org/volunteer2018

Posted: Tuesday 18 December 2018


Content

  • We finally got around to a quiet night on the sofa and watched Netflix’ “Been So Long”. https://www.netflix.com/gb/title/80211622. It’s a breath of fresh air – a true modern love story in musical format set in Camden Town starring brilliant Michaela Cole.
  • Sports docs really aren’t just for sports fans (or not all of them). Sunderland Til I Die, produced by Mint & Co’s client, Fulwell 73 (their biggest fans, the company’s owners) will be on our list for Netflix viewing. Touching on universal themes of community, faith, failure.
  • We’ll be getting tickets to Waitress, the Broadway smash musical coming to the West End in Feb. Created by an all-female team, and inspired by the classic film of the same name, Waitress tells the story of a loveable small town waitress with special baking skills. Will something finally knock Hamilton off most listened to album position? We’ll report back!

Posted: Tuesday 18 December 2018


Just Because

  • We always try to keep up with the verbal zeitgeist, and the Collins List of Words of the Year has helped us keep up to date – meet us for a spot of plogging?
  • For some daily mindfulness and self awareness in these crazy busy lives that we lead, head to Daily Om.
  • For some super cool designer wrapping paper, check out Chasing Paper.
  • Remember the days before the internet when you somehow got hold of a cheat code for your gaming device and it was as if you’d won the lottery? Well this article has had the same reaction for android phone owners.

Posted: Thursday 20 December 2018


 

 

Industry

  • Influencer Marketing agency Style Haul have published a fascinating White Paper entitled “The Value of Community for Influencer Campaigns”. Check it out here.
  • The growing trend for broadcasters and now production entities to experiment with investments in VR/XR. Sky recently mentioned on C21 that “There isn’t enough VR content, it’s not episodic enough, not longform enough”. Sony Pictures Television was reported to be set to launch its first format incorporating VR technology later this year – developed with the Future Formats unit. This unit was established within the international production arm of Sony Pictures Television in January alongside creatives at Sony PlayStation. Discovery’s head of VR was reported in C21 regarding their investment into VR: “If scale’s not in the equation, then, to me, the currency you will get in return for creating this content is that we are becoming front-and-centre in a growing consumer interest, so that when that opportunity matures we have a significant option on capturing it.”

Posted: Wednesday 29th August 2018

 


Collaboration & Community

 

  • We regularly collaborate with Reviewed and Cleared, headed up by David Burgess and many of our clients now work with Reviewed and Cleared for content compliance. We value their pragmatic and creative approach.
  • If you’ve ever been an admin on Facebook, your ears will prick up perhaps at this one. Facebook is testing a feature that will allow admins the option to implement monthly membership fees, to support the time they spend building up Facebook communities. Subscriptions are being tested on a select number of groups and will be rolled out depending on the feedback.
  • We’re very excited to have just joined The AllBright! A co-work and networking space in Fitzrovia, beautifully designed, and focusing on making the UK the best place to be a female leader, we salute their cause.

Posted: Wednesday 29th August 2018

 

 


 

Content

  • There are tons of series returning to Netflix this summer. Booking a spot on the sofa for Ozark Season 2, Last Chance U series 3 (“Take a knee!”), Orange Is the New Black Season 4, to name but a few.
  • Check out Industry Updates sections Highlights from Createch 2018 and Stories from Sheffield Docs Fest for branded content/immersive and docs content that’s been inspiring us.
  • We can’t wait to watch the televised version of Mint & Co Podcast favourite, My Dad Wrote a Porno on HBO, coming out in 2019. In the meantime, we’ll be downloading the forth season of the podcast to hear/cringe at the latest installment of Belinda Blinked, and laugh away the end of the summer blues.

Posted: Wednesday 29th August 2018


Just Because

  • Since reading How to Break Up with your Phone, we’ve been trying really hard to follow some of the principals of the 30-day method.
  • We’re Moonwalking down the new Michael Jackson On the Wall exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery, to check out the superstar’s influence on global artists.
  • If your Instagram feed is like Mint & Co’s, you’ll be feeling jealous of all the super cool Airbnb’s around this summer. Did you know though that as well as finding your dream holiday lodging on Airbnb, you can also find out about social impact experiences? With multiple interesting options on offer, we are planning a Mint Collective trip the the Guide Dog Session.

Posted: Wednesday 29th August 2018

 

 


 

TV and Media Production

Industry

  • Is anyone on Vero yet? If you’ve been left feeling a bit dumbfounded by the ins and outs of this new platform, have a read of this handy guide which might clear things up a bit.
  • See SXSW 2018 Austin Insights in the ‘Industry Updates’ section of the blog, what an inspiring trip! Amongst the sessions, there was time to catch a film screening of the Tuba to Cuba documentary – a heartwarming and visually stunning documentary about a Jazz group in New Orleans traveling to Cuba to discover the roots of Jazz and making beautiful connections with people there.
  • We stumbled across this article that highlights the growing business opportunities for VR, fascinating read. Look out for VR cafes, therapy clinics and dating apps coming soon!!
  • A businessman won the right to have details of his previous criminal conviction removed from Google search results, making use of the ‘right to be forgotten’.

Posted: Sunday 29th April 2018


Collaboration & Community

  • “Child friendly” is not a word that automatically springs to mind when you think of a traditional co-work space but we hope Cuckooz Nest will change that. It’s a new offering in Clerkenwell, with flexible and affordable on-site childcare. A total game-changer for freelancers. They also have a brilliant blog that we highly recommend for some great articles on being a working parent.
  • We regularly collaborate with Reviewed and Cleared, headed up by David Burgess and many of our clients now work with Reviewed and Cleared for content compliance. We value their pragmatic and creative approach.
  • 2018 marks the 100 year anniversary of women receiving suffrage in the UK (albeit it wasn’t until 1928 when women received equal suffrage to men) and there are plenty of great commemorative events taking place. If you’re in London, look out for the #BehindEveryGreatCity campaign, launched by Lord Mayor Sadiq Khan, to highlight gender inequality. The programme kicked off with a year-long programme of works by exclusively women artists on the London Underground and at the end of April, a statue of suffragist leader Millicent Fawcett was unveiled in Parliament Square- the first EVER monument of a woman in the iconic square.
  • Culturevist arrange events for people to meet, talk and learn about creating companies people love. It’s hard to truly understand until you GO to one of their events. A couple of the Mint Collective went along at the end of 2017, to an event held in collaboration with online bank Monzo, and it was really inspiring.

Posted: Sunday 29th April 2018

Collaboration & Community


Favourite media and production podcasts

Content

Following on from our podcast post in the Industry Updates section of the blog, here are a collection of the Mint Collective’s favourite podcasts:

  • Reasons to be Cheerful: with Ed Miliband and Geoff Lloyd (recently awarded podcast of the year at the Broadcast Press Guilds Award).
  • Ctrl Alt Delete: hosted by the inimitable Emma Gannon, every edition is an interview about the guest’s relationship with the internet. Guests have included Lena Dunham, Will Young, June Sarpong and loads more.
  • The Adam Buxton Show: hosted by, you guessed it, Adam Buxton (of Adam and Joe fame)- it will have you laughing out loud and humming the jingles relentlessly. If you need convincing, try either of the Louis Theroux eps or the Romesh Ranganathan eps to start with.
  • Slate’s Culture Gabfest: The US-based podcast platform was one of the pioneers of the genre and culture gabfest is a weekly discussion on pop culture topics.
  • The High Lo: (formerly known as the PanDolly Podcast) Hosted by podcast goddesses Dolly Alderton and Pandora Sykes, it’s a weekly exploration of high brow/low brow (as the name suggests) news stories. Totally addictive.
  • The West Wing Weekly: very niche, but if you’re a fan of the TV drama, you need this podcast in your life. The presenters cover a different West Wing episode every week, analysing the storylines, and even interviewing actors/producers. It’s a riot.
  • Radio 4’s Grown Up Land: anger, dating, cleaning, money, ambition – the panel look at a life issue every week that they really should be on top of by now.
  • How I Built This: Not a new release, but we have happened upon the fantastic NPR podcast and really recommend it to anyone interested in entrepreneurship and how a business pipe dream can become a reality. The programme looks into the stories behind some of the world’s best known brands, and tells the story of their often rocky climb to success.
  • Queer Eye for the Straight Guy – if you loved the original (we did!), you will fall over yourself for the revival, now on Netflix and made by ITV Studios. It’s a cliche, but you will laugh, you will cry, and you will almost certainly binge watch the whole season in 2 days like we did.
  • Lin Manuel Miranda’s Broadway mega hit Hamilton sold out super quickly when tickets were released for the London dates and swept the boards at the recent Olivier Awards, winning 7 awards. One of the Mint Collective was lucky enough to have 5 hours spare to constantly refresh her screen on the opening day of sales, and nabbed 2 hot tickets. The reviews (not only from her) are phenomenal – and rightly so and the prizes are well deserved. If you’ve not seen it, try and get tickets. And we might regret sharing this tip, but if you download the Hamilton App, you can enter a lottery to win £10 tickets every day.

Posted: Sunday 29th April 2018


Just Because

  • NASA has launched Space X’s newest telescope which is going to discover thousands of new worlds – totally mind-blowing.
  • Everyone loves Abba right? There’s a fantastic new-ish exhibition, ABBA: Super Troopers, that launched at the end of Jan at the Southbank Centre. It’s an interactive immersive journey through Abba’s journey of pop domination. Don your flares and your blond wig and see you down there.
  • The London Sock Exchange: Finally a good, earth-friendly solution for all those lonely single socks languishing in our sock drawers.
  • This article from Mint & Co favourite, The Pool, sets out a collection of fashion brands that are really working to help support women around the world.

Posted: Sunday 29th April 2018

Technology updates in media


Virtual Reality in TV production

Industry

* Netflix’ marketing around Stranger Things, from trainers, to Topshop, TFL in London, Lyft in the US and Kellogg’s, The Drum highlights some of the innovative partnerships for series 2.

We also we loved the cease and desist letter that went viral, from a Netflix lawyer to the owner of a Chicago bar.

*Ericsson’s ConsumerLab TV and Media Report had some fascinating findings and predicted trends:

-On Demand Content already represents 40% of total video and TV viewing

-70% of consumers view video on smartphones

-They predict VR will be a spark to reignite the ‘social TV campfire’

-30% of consumers say they will watch content via VR in the next 5 years

 

* There will be many ‘firsts’ in the world of VR. The first use of VR by global specialists to help perform an operation in London, by viewing an operating table in real time and offering their expertise, is a pretty amazing ‘first’ in the health industry. It could revolutionise how operations are carried out routinely in the near future.

*AI in the streaming space: this fascinating article highlights how AI algorithms will mean that content can be produced, analysed and delivered more efficiently using AI tools (including how content can be filmed intelligently and real time video switching, predicting a reduction in physical camera operator and technical director roles for certain content).

Posted: Tuesday 31st October 2017


Collaboration & Community

* We were really pleased to read about PACT and a producers’ industry working group creating a module for media degree courses that will cover IP and Rights, Content & Funding and IP exploitation (with 200+ UK media companies signing up to support it).

* We’re teaming up with Lewis Silkin law firm to offer a free GDPR workshop and fixed fee offering for data privacy law compliance, we’ll be emailing soon with further details. Lewis Silkin are renowned for their work with creative, innovative and brand-focused businesses.

*We collaborate regularly with David Burgess at Reviewed and Cleared, and many of our clients now work with Reviewed and Cleared for content compliance. We value their pragmatic and creative approach.

Collaboration & Community

 

*Blooming Founders have opened their first female-focused co-work space ‘Blooms’, we can see this is fast becoming a growing trend, first starting across the pond in the US, and now they are popping up in London (All Bright have also just opened one). Luckily men are still allowed in! But all hail support for women in business, this can only be a good thing.

Posted: Tuesday 31st October 2017


Inspiring us at Mint & co

Content

*We were excited to hear that Kidulthood is coming back as a TV series, with Noel Clarke writing.

*Kudos’ brilliant Gunpowder has started. Darkly lit, set in London 1605, starring Kit Harrington and Liv Tyler.

* We remember Saturday nights throughout the 80s and 90s spent glued in front of the Generation Game. Sadly, no more Brucie but we are confident that Mel and Sue will do a cracking job. Now take us to the conveyor belt. Anyone else hoping they bring back Noel’s House Party too?

* Having binge watched Transparent Series 4 on Amazon Prime earlier this month, we’ve been waiting (quite) patiently for season 2 of Stranger Things to hit our Netflix menu, which is now here, hurray!

* It was never meant to be an obituary, but the George Michael documentary broadcast recently on Channel 4, directed and narrated by the late legend, was a fascinating and poignant exploration of his 30 years spent in the limelight. Now available to view for a little longer on All4 here.

*We’re loving the platform ‘Medium’ for inspirational articles about life, business, tech, health. This article by Yann Girard caught our eye recently for his style of writing and his worldly view of how we should all be approaching life from the perspective of what our 80-year old self would think!

Posted: Tuesday 31st October 2017


Just Because

* As freelance consultants, working mostly remotely, the working lives of the Mint Collective would be almost impossible without email and it’s hard to imagine a time before mail by @. So we were happy to take a step back in time and visit the amazing new Mail Museum near Mount Pleasant post office. A brilliant day out for families, reminding us of the days when post used to be whizzed around London in an amazing web of underground tunnels.

*We read about Smart Works – a UK- wide charity that provides high quality interview clothes and styling advice for women in need. Smart Works gives jobseeking women the confidence and practical tools to help them to do well at interview and get the job they are going for. And their results are astounding- one in two women that they help get the job they were going for according to their stats. Find out more here.

*The Pool’s ‘Quick and Easy’ recipes, a great database for tasty quick post work dinners.

Mint Collective remote work

*Or for something more sinful, we read in the Metro recently that Australia’s Doughnut Time is coming to London! With play on word names such as Oreana Grande and Stranger Rings 2.0, make ours a Brewno Mars (Creme glaze with coffee glaze, coffee crumbs and Tim Tam) pieces.

Posted: Tuesday 31st October 2017

 


SUMMER BLOG ENTRIES:

Industry updates summer 2017

Industry

* Mobile Advertising

The projected figures for the state of the mobile advertising market are pretty clear indicators that the onward march of mobile internet viewing continues apace. According to Zenith Media, 71% of overall internet consumption will be mobile in 2017.

* Augmented Reality

I think Zuckerberg makes a good point that “the first augmented reality platform that becomes mainstream isn’t going to be glasses, it’s going to be cameras.” We all have one, they’re accessible. It’s also refreshing to see that they are building an open platform for developers to work on, rather than keeping it secret like others (i.e. Snapchat). It should pave the way for some interesting augmented reality effects over photos on its Camera Effects platform.

* AI and Social Media

Pinterest’s new AI tool Pinterest Lens, that will help foodies search for food content based on food items and meals captured via Lens.

Posted: Monday 12 June 2017


Collaboration & Community

* House of St Barnabas – Employment Programme

The House of St Barnabas is a unique members club which is also a charity focused on helping to eliminate homelessness. They run an Employment Programme to help people get back into work, which involves a mentor programme. You may be interested to find out more about it here.

* Female Entrepreneurs

Last quarter, we blogged about the brilliant new crowdfunding platform, AllBright, run by women, for female-led businesses.

Collaboration & Community

This quarter, we’re going to mention the group Blooming Founders, set up by Lu Li. They are a social network that also run networking events for female business owners. They are age and industry agnostic. We’ve joined their Facebook group and look forward to attending some of their get-togethers, sharing knowhow and finishing their brand new book ‘Dear Female Founder’ containing letters of advice from female founders (really great, highly recommended for freelancers and business owners).

Posted Monday 12 June 2017


Inspiring us at Mint & Co

Content

* Now this is an LCD Soundsytem experience we wished we’d been able to attend, although recording and playing back your own dance moves might not be the best entertainment for some. Bring on more VR dance parties – Mint & Co tip this, and VR cinema viewing, to be a big growth area for VR, solving the ‘antisocial’ label it often gets tagged with.
LC Soundsystem VR

You can sign up here to be notified of the Dance Tonite VR experience launch.

* As fans of Lauren Laverne and Sam Baker’s ‘The Pool’ online publishing platform aimed at female readers and viewers, we were pleased to read this article in The Drum that ‘This Girl Can’ marketer, Tanya Joseph, has been hired to focus on their marketing strategy and orbit them to even greater success, with a focus on events as well as their content offering. I agree with Tanya that they have brilliantly nailed their brand purpose from the start.

* It’s won awards and is being regularly discussed as a new format for intimate documentary – Exodus: Our Journey to Europe, Bafta TV award winning doc by Keo Films. A poignant, immersive documentary, following the lives of people fleeing their countries to reach Europe. They were given camera phones to self-document their journeys, struggles, family lives and experiences.

* Bloodline series 3 on Netflix is back, binge viewing for the next few weeks is sorted.

Posted Monday 12 June 2017


Just Because

* It’s Summer, let’s go al fresco swimming in the local lido (for mind and body).

In a constantly ‘connected’ world, often working indoors at our desks for the majority of the week, it’s sometimes hard to create proper switch off time and time outdoors each day – two things known to improve our overall wellbeing. So this summer, we’re promoting outdoor swimming for our vitamin D intake and me-time, and we think this great little video describes the benefits of some outdoor splishing and sploshing in a really insightful (and quite hynpnotic) way.

Of course I shouldn’t rub it in, but at Mint & Co, we get to choose what time of day we’d like to take a dip, and also get the opportunity to work in the garden/on the terrace with the birds tweeting (albeit under an umbrella so the screen is still visible) #flexibleworking #summerworking

* Outdoors Culture

On the subject of the outdoors, Open City is a great source of outdoor activities around the city of London focused on architecture and design. This photography course in Shoreditch in June and July caught our eye.

Those with little people should look into the awesome Archi Kids festival in July!

* Al Fresco Drinking

Kings Cross based Camino, renowned for al fresco drinking on the terrace and tasty tapas treats, have opened a new pop up. We’ll be taking a trip to their new Ibiza-inspired Camino Bankside and trying a Sherry and Vermouth Spritzer or three.

For other rooftop al fresco summer drinking options, check out this guide.

Posted Monday 12 June 2017

 


SPRING BLOG ENTRIES:

Industry

Inspiring us this quarter is the nascent growth of VR and AR as a method of storytelling. We attended C21’s Future Media event at the end of last year, which had a heavy focus on VR, and we’re excited to share the following insights with you. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out in the coming year:

* The tech is ready, the money is there (predominantly brand-funded at the moment), but there isn’t enough good quality content. We’re getting ready to watch the growth of VR/AR specific production companies and existing production companies building a VR capability.

* Like Netflix, it will take a while to get going, but get going it will. The consensus is that this isn’t going to be a repeat of 3D viewing with 3D glasses.

* The 15 minute plus area and returnable content is what has escaped the market so far – longform narrative and compelling storytelling will be key. Yes it’s a new medium, but it’s the story that people want. Alex Mahon from the Foundry made a good point – that we generally don’t like deciding the story or looking around behind us, we want the story to be told to us and we generally like to sit down to watch it!

* Here be Dragons, VR City, Unit 9, and Visualise, all showcased their VR content and it was super impressive. The VR app for Mr Robot, from Here Be Dragons, is a great example of how VR allows fans to delve deeper in to the character and storyline.

* Atlantic Productions’ Alchemy have been innovative with bringing the VR experience to exhibition space; the Natural History Museum showcases David Attenborough’s Great Barrier Reef (now opening in various locations worldwide). So too have Inception, run by Benny Arbel, focusing on bringing VR content in the form of apps to Daydream, Sony Playstation, museums, exhibitions and co-producing with publishers.

* People commented that VR is like theatre, there’s the staging, the characters, the viewer can see everything and decide what to focus on. It also draws on gaming, cinema and as Mike Jones (writer and creative producer) said, “every new medium stands on the shoulders of the ones before”.

This LA Times article explores one issue VR grapples with and that is that despite the ‘immersive’ experience, it is a largely solitary experience which is problematic given we’re all ‘predominantly social monkeys’. Producers who can unlock this missing ‘community spirit’ within the content will do well.

Of course technology will also develop so that clunky VR headsets, which can’t help but be isolating, will become something more refined and less intrusive. In the meantime, here is a really soulful antidote to this, a musical story about the journey of VR told through Chris Milk’s (Here Be Dragons) personal experiences, culminating in a communal TED audience VR viewing. We love that he describes VR as an ’empathy machine’; meaning we can really connect with others’ experiences, putting us right there in someone’s first person viewpoint.

Posted: February 2017


Restaurant Bookings

The vast majority of us now make our restaurant bookings online. There are other similar offerings out there, but this new bookings site, that gives £1 for every diner to a charity of your choice, stands out. We wonder, if all our clients and anyone viewing this, added up all of our lunch and dinner bookings over the space of a year, how much that would raise for charity?! Quite a lot I think. Check it out here and think about using it and others like it!

Posted: February 2017


Crowdfunding

It was great to read about a new female-owned crowdfunding platform All Bright, that supports female-led businesses through investment and mentoring.

Male or female, you can become an All Bright Angel from investing as little as £1000. We were surprised to learn that 60% of entrepreneurs under 35 are now women. Fantastic news.

Posted: February 2017


Content

* BBR Saatchi and Saatchi’s project with Or Yarok (Israel’s safer driving association), came up with a really unique and shocking way to get the message across to younger audiences about the danger of using phones/tech while driving. An Israeli vlogger live streamed her death. The Drum have reported on it here.

* Tom Hardy’s performance as James Delaney in BBC’s Taboo, amazing.

*Fusion’s video about a young girl’s self taught dubstep dancing, reminding us of the great learning tool that Youtube is.

* The OA on Netflix – slow burner, compelling, great storylines and characters, strangely comical at times. Great showcase of how SVOD allows producers to play with differing episodic lengths in a way that traditional TV can’t.

* It’s not brand new but it’s iconic and completely awe inspiring, and we haven’t seen anything to quite match it since in the world of music videos – the Mill’s collaboration with Nic & Dom for the ‘Wide Open’ Chemical Brothers’ track. Reading about how the mesh dancer was created; the use of technology and sheer determination, makes you realise what a special project it was.

* The ‘Acquimission’ model we keep hearing about recently, which encompasses the type of deal that’s a hybrid between a commission and an acquisition. A producer self-funds a project using own funds/investor funds, then a commissioning broadcaster/platform funds the remaining costs to finish the project, with deal terms that are a mix of commission and acquisition-based terms. Interesting stuff.

Posted: February 2017

 


Just Because

* It’s still cold and we need something to brighten our spirits and dream about holidays and the sun, check out the 21 Best Beaches in the World.

* There is a silent disco on the Cutty Sark on 10th Feb and at the Shard for a month from 25th Feb – silent discos in London landmarks are obviously on-trend. Our last was on a beach in Goa!

* Dogs apparently prefer Reggae and Soft Rock!

Posted: February 2017