How should a startup identify and communicate its core purpose? With a ripping yarn, say two veterans from the nexus of technology and creativity.
“An idea needs to have a foundation – something that can support it,” said Podesta, who worked on A Bug’s Life, Toy Story 2 and 3, Monsters Inc., Finding Nemo and The Incredibles.
“How people experience this stuff is through design. The fuel for that design is going to come from a story.”
Although their missive may have resonated more with humanities folk than computer scientists, what the pair were really espousing what the necessity for clear thinking and a clear mission among product developers.
As Jacob, who worked on the original Toy Story and founded Pixar University, explained: “Groping randomly begets poor design.” And, as Podesta added: “If you know your intent, then you know what’s important and you can strip away the rest and focus on that.”
What these animators might call a “story”, others of a discipline might call a marketing “campaign.” You might say Facebook’s recent “chair” messaging was an attempt to re-clarify its own story.
Jacob summarised it thusly:
Now out of Pixar, Jacob and Podesta have formed their own start-up, launching early in 2013. To one RoadMap attendee who asked the pair to clarify their story, Jacob said: “Toy Talk is the name of the company – I think it should be pretty obvious what we’re trying to do.”
For those to whom it is not, here is their just-published tease video for what will be a range of talking teddy bears…
Check out the rest of our RoadMap 2012 coverage here, and a video recording of the session follow below: