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Virtual Unreality

Check out my opinion piece on Adnews: Virtual Unreality

Garry Law

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Caltex My Truck Mate

It's not all fun and games... unless you put me in the project!

Caltex just released My Truck Mate, a project for which I was Tech Lead over the last couple of months. This is the first project that I've tech-led that is built natively in iOS and Android, so it's lightning fast!

With this app, Caltex truckies can find Caltex stations along a route, filter stations that accomodate their trucks and needs.

I also made sure there was a Candy-Crush minigame in there, because ME!

caltex_screen caltex_screen2 caltex3

Download Free for iPhone:



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Rise of Gladiators

I'm pleased to announce the launch of my new mobile game, Rise of Gladiators!

After a month's worth of work between me and Brendan of, the game is now free to download for both Apple and Android users.

Rise of Gladiators for iPhone/iPad:

Rise of Gladiators for Android:



Imposter Syndrome

Oh no, it’s that feeling. You could be in a meeting, or a workshop; when all of a sudden, someone throws you a supposedly simple, work-related question:

“Hey Garry, what framework would you use for XYZ?”

“Hey Garry, how do you type-set in XYScript?”

“Hey Garry, can you summarise the SLC in your technical spec?”

SLC? What does it mean? Do I wing the answer now, or Google it up later? Do I shrug and say “I dunno”?  It’s moments like these when I start to doubt myself.

Not long ago, I felt like an imposter. I felt extremely lucky to do what I do because there’s no other excuse for me to not know the acronym for Software Life Cycle.

Psychologists call this Imposter Syndrome, and it can affect anyone from the uni-graduate, to the boss. Symptoms can be mild, or downright debilitating. Imposter Syndrome sufferers can feel depressed, defensive or worse! There has been a lot written about this very modern disorder, but to avoid feeling like an imposter you can follow some simple steps:

1-      Celebrate your achievements

2-      Remember, you’re not the only one feeling like this

3-      Find a mentor

4-      Swot up on the symptoms

5-      Relax

*Psychologies Magazine, February 2013

Thankfully, I did find myself some great mentors in the last few years who were able to celebrate my achievements with me. It is incredibly helpful to have someone guide you, who has been there themselves.

After all, you probably deserve to be where you are; you can’t be that good at faking it… right?


Youth Engagement in Marketing

Izzy and I listened to an inspiring presentation by Giorgia Castello of Playground Communications.

Do you recognise the following number?

This is, of course, the phone number for Pizza Hut. And if you call that number, this man will deliver your pizza:

The Pizza Hut phone number marketed using the William Tell Overture was first heard some 25 years ago, and Dougie the pizza delivery guy appeared on the above commercial on 1996. That's 17 years ago!

It's amazing how much we remember from advertising when we were young. According to Giorgia that is because young people have a less developed 'filter system' that rejects certain irrelevant or unimportant messages. This makes youth marketing a highly effective strategy that shouldn't be ignored.

According to Playground, marketing for youth is always carefully planned, with clear ethical boundaries agreed by all stakeholders or regulators. For example, Playground considers under 5 year olds off-limits, and young teenagers off-limits for junk food ads.

Youth represent three broad markets:

- Current market: Youth with pocket money, allowances for doing chores, etc.

- Influence market: Youth who have influence over their parents' and relatives' spending habits. See this in action in the Dulux Bazillion Jellybeans campaign.

- Future market: Youth who will become consumers in the future. For example Whyville is a children's game that allows players to get an in-game Toyota Scion, and Coinland, a Commonwealth Bank game that teaches kids the value of saving, starting bank accounts and using ATMs.

Toyota Scion in Whyville

There are some common pitfalls when it comes to marketing to youth. The first of which is failure to define the audience; that is grouping age groups too broadly like "6 - 15 year olds". Playground Communications' specialty is recognising that the different groups of the youth audience are not only grouped by age, but also by transitions between age groups.

Generally, this is:

  • Kids 5-10
  • Tweens 11-13
  • Teens 14-17

Young adults between 18-24 are further split into different groups depending on their situation:

  • Start ups - first steps toward adulthood
  • Play ups - Freedom, fun, flirtation
  • Next ups - On the brink of adulthood

The second pitfall in youth marketing is making bad assumptions about the audience with things like: "I remember what it was like..." or "I'll just ask a kid...".

Youth marketing is complex and tricky to sell. It is important to manage a client's concerns by knowing what the best business opportunity is, including the audience size, influence and spending power.

In addition, it is important to know what the purchase dynamic is, and to figure out how to create a long-term preference for your brand.

As mentioned before, as long as clear ethical boundaries are set and agreed upon by everyone involved, there's no reason to ignore the youth as a market to build brand loyalty.