sand logo s “DATA HARVEST IS GOING TO BE GRANULAR.”  (Nicholas Negroponte – MIT, Boston)

SICK AND TIRED OF BIG DATA? Of course you are! And you have good reasons because Big Data is killing both creativity and bright ideas in favor of an asinine manipulation of nebulous results. Our definition of Big Data? A list of Big numbers crunched by Big computers, put together by Big assholes. REAL DATA IS UNDER YOUR FEET! We all agree that people’s behavior, choices and feelings can’t be reduced to raw numbers. Real life, in fact, is too rich and complex to be framed into a spreadsheet. Wouldn’t it be great to find a real-life approach to data harvest?  We decided to focus on this goal and, for a start, we left our offices to travel around for a while. We searched every corner, looking for concrete evidence. Then, one day, while camping on a beautiful bay in Northern California, we suddenly realized we were stepping on it: Footprints! Human life, since prehistory, has been tracked and interpreted through footprints. Data was there, ready to be collected, fresh from the beach!! Sand Marketing was born. sand footprints all small copia Above: a sheet from the SAND MARKETING © 1,500-page report. Every footprint bears a wealth of information about a person’s character, choices, tastes, lifestyle and wanderings. Our staff catalogued each one, adding personal on-site notes, interviews with local people and extra material found on specific locations. Below: another page showing how information has been organized according to each member’s interests. Sand Marketing is based on human data collected by humans. For this reason it’s extremely difficult to fit such infos into a box but it’s precisely the lack of a pre-conceived scheme to make all these data much more relevant and precious. sand footprints SCHEDA2 Below: a couple of beautiful tridimensional sand-pie charts illustrating data in a compelling, new way. Our collaborators were left free to organize and express what they gathered, using whatever medium they liked. We always made sure data was taking shape on the spot, so to guarantee accuracy through immediacy. 3D PIE 2s

3D PIE 3shoes circle_s

Above: the Foot Compass is a Sand Marketing© tool which creates a symbolic map of ‘shoe trends’ based on people’s self-definition. Since no one wants to be trapped into mega marketing’s clusters, we developed a method based on people’s self-perception because they know, better than anybody else, who they are and how they feel. Below: a map’s detail, showing the average user of a Nike Revolution 5828 pair of sneakers: unexpectedly, what was marketed to youngsters, is bought by “Retired, Cardio Fans who prefer walking rather than running.” They call themselves Dontcarers because they don’t care about brands. All they want is a good pair of shoes. Extra information (bottom) completes the profile.

shoe circle2 snames s Above: in order to have the whole group in one picture, our staff was asked to pick their favorite pebble from the beach and send it to us. 24 collaborators from 11 Countries collected more than 50,000 footprints, along with their personal notes, interviews and stories.


The SAND MARKETING  logo opening our story was created, especially for us, by French-Italian designer and artist Sissi Deb. All her famous Mandala-Logos, shortly after being created, are destroyed. This way, every artwork turns into a happening. We asked permission to film Sissi’s incredible performance. It doesn’t happen everyday to find artists gifted with such self-irony.


Above: this globe has been shaped using approximately 6 billion sand grains. Sissi Deb wanted to represent our world: a fragile planet crowded by human beings. She intended it as a universal message to people to collaborate and stick together in the name of peace & love. Let’s have a joint!

Our warmest thank you to our all those who contributed to the project, in recognition of their enthusiasm and hard work. Whoever is interested to know more about SAND MARKETING is invited to leave a note or to contact Brandpowder directly on this website.

The Brandpowder Team

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