It's an emotional thing.
We quietly launched a whole new business earlier this month, something different, but in many ways a sister company to Makers & Brothers. We have only just started, but it is a project we have been thinking about for some time — &Open.
We have been involved in corporate gifting since our foundation. Makers & Brothers has been discreetly helping multinationals and local companies develop meaningful gifts and activities for more than 5 years. Over a year ago we started a project that led to a complete rethink of this approach, because the term 'corporate gifting' is in a bit of a rut and does little to explain what we believe in. We believe in emotional connections, and that is the very root of &Open.
&Open is about forging real relationships, and we know they are not easy but at the end of the day they are what matter, what we remember most. These relationships keep the world healthy and revolving. And it is a fairly obvious observation but we feel that the more digital people’s lives become, the more people crave the physical.
"People need to know they matter."
Relationships are built on empathy and, in the real world, they cannot be forged by algorithms. Today, many companies barely exist in the physical sense and their customer service or approach to human resources can be so ethereal it almost isn't there. Technology is a super useful tool but it is only part of the solution, fundamentally it is about making emotional connections, impactful moments with meaning and depth. Decisions are rarely rational, most are far more emotional than we are even aware.
All that said, &Open does hold a pretty smart, rational piece of technology at its core. A simple tool, a B2B platform that helps businesses manage their relationships, gifting, rewarding, saying thank you, showing appreciation, if for no other reason than it is the right thing to do. The &Open platform offers clean control and clarity over every interaction. Communication, customer retention, staff retention, all play a huge part in running a successful business, and for those companies whose focus is on scale and growth, help is needed.
"Thoughtful original gifts, objects
We believe &Open will be able to help. We want &Open to help smart, culturally engaged businesses and we are already helping one amazing forward-thinking company bring thoughtful communication to their global audience. The key detail for us is that it is not so much about the gift, but the relationship it represents and the message it holds.
&Open is very much built upon our experience here at M&B. All we have really added is an adaptable platform to deliver impactful moments with meaning and depth on a global scale.
We're pretty excited about its future.
Worst Travellers by Ping Zhu
Still from Le Ballon Rouge by Albert Lamorisse