The Inventor

Earl Silas Tupper was born on a farm in New Hampshire in 1907. At the beginning of his career he worked as a farmer and a gardener. At the age of 30 he joint DuPont where he learned a lot about plastics. Only a year later he set up shop. In the 1940ies flexible plastics was a very new product.

Already in the 1930ies Tupper experimented with different kinds of plastics and found a method to fabricate an unbreakable, flexible and hygienic material whereas hitherto plastic was brittle and therefore difficult to form.

By studying covers of tin cans Tupper also found a solution for the plastic lids.

The Product

The combination of the light and flexible plastic boxes that could take different colours and shapes plus the airtight plastic lids that were easy to open made Tupperware such a success and a household name if it comes to food storage.

The Marketing Strategy

The best product will not sell if nobody knows about it. We are in the 1940ies, a long time before the internet came to life. Tupper tried to sell his invention through retailers but it did not sell well.

Tupper began to market his product on private parties that are still known (at least around here) as Tupper parties. A recommendation from one experienced housewife to another one made the success. This is called referral marketing.

Multilevel Marketing Today

I don’t know about Tupper’s compensation scheme but today, referral marketing is a multilevel marketing and each seller in the system is an independent reseller.

Think of it as a pyramid, the higher up a person is the more he or she earns. The top person (dark red in the picture below) can sell products directly and also search other resellers (lighter red, level 2) that sell products and sell other resellers and so on. The point is that only the top level players really earn money because number 1 participates at the sales of all layers below, number 2 as from layer 3 and so on. You see that if you are at level 12 you might work a lot with little reward.

I was offered such an opportunity not so long time ago. Although my level was not too bad I refused for the following reasons:

  1. I would not call this independent but rather see it as a modern form of slavery
  2. Everybody can participate in this system and in the age of digitalization I did not want my name to be mentioned with people about whose business acumen I don’t know anything
  3. Although personal contact is irreplaceable to humans and multilevel marketing might have been ok in Tupper’s time I believe that a sales strategy should look differently today. One of it is creating an emotional online experience

Have you ever participated in a referral marketing system? What is your experience?


Being the hedonist that I am, I regularly read the news on the fashion and luxury market. One of the very hot topics is digitalization and companies’ struggle with it. During the last days the interest in digitalization got another boost since Amazon announced their ambition in fashion, launching a new service “try before you buy” and revealed that they already signed up with Nike for a strategic partnership. To me this does not sound as if Amazon intended to go for low-end products.

From my own experience I can tell that Amazon’s customer service is excellent and the shop performance is hard to beat. Yes, I know that Amazon grew up with the internet, so to speak.

From Offline to Online. A Challenge.

This cannot be said about most other retailers, let alone the fashion brands I can think of. The typical high-end brand has a long history, high quality products, a carefully built brand, committed staff that gives excellent advice and mostly a clear idea of its target audience. What you just read it the description of the off-line world and the reason I like shopping.

The online world looks sobering. The performance is too slow by far, the filtering is inconsistent. Most online shops are hardly more than a catalogue on the internet. Information on the product, delivery time, refund policy etc. are hard to find. In many cases you see them only when you are already at the shopping cart typing in your credit card number. By the way, this shocks a lot of clients and they abort the payment process.

Creating An Emotional Online Experience that Sells

Some weeks ago  I announced that I will provide some details on my CV. Well, I changed my mind since I think that it might be more useful to focus on how I can support your journey to digitalisation . But first I want to give you some information on what digitalisation could mean for your business.

Where to Start Digitalization?

A recent paper by McKinsey & Co speaks about 7 steps a CEO has to take in order to drive a successful digital transition: .

I will only discuss the two steps that seem the most important to me since I believe that the remaining ones are logical consequences of the first two which are

  1. Making Decisions
  2. Planning

Make Bold Decisions

Set Ambitions for Your Business

Where do you want your business to go? I imagine that most retailers will run physical shops despite going digital and selling their products in an online-shop. So what products should be available online? What growth to you project? Maybe every product has to be treated differently? The questions are probably similar to the ones you answered for your off-line business which you know by heart.

Look at Your Clients

Your clients are the most important people in your organisation. So you should look at them long before you look at your processes. After all you run your organisation for your customers. They have been loyal to you because of your excellent products, your brilliant service, your reputation in your industry, your tradition etc. You see where we are going to: It is your brand. Your Brand is not just the hard facts. It is an emotion. It is what I said above about the off-line world.

It is important to have a well-performing e-commerce platform, there is no doubt about this. But of even higher importance is your clients recognising your brand that gives them the feeling of comfort and quality. So you need additional features to accomplish this.

Which ones? That is certainly not a question anybody could answer without a serious analysis of your customer’s journey. The method to visualize this is called customer journey map. The following video provides some valuable information on how to do it. The most important message is: a customer journey is something “personal”. It must be shaped for your brand and your clients.

Look at Your Processes

Digitalization will change the way you work dramatically. Not everybody in your company will like this so you have to sell the solution to stakeholders and to train people.

Let’s assume for a moment that the world was only black and white.

Black would be you buy a technical solution out of the box and organise yourself around this. I know a company who did so but depending on your business’ complexity this could be too black.

White in this case is the opposite and the system would be built around your processes and behaviours. I have never seen a company that did that since it is too expensive, too time consuming and digitalisation is also a good reason to get rid of old and obsolete habits and processes that maybe do not serve your business or your clients.


Just one word about planning. Most probably you cannot digitalise everything in one go. The risk is too high since your organisation must adapt to the changes and the cost could be stretching your budget.

So you have to set priorities on what to do first and set realistic timelines. Realistic or not: projects like this always bear surprises. It is realistic to prepare for an adventure worthwhile. After all you are about to win over the clients of the next generation.

P.S. If you still need my grandmother’s first name or my birthday please drop me a line .


Some weeks ago I promised you a feedback about an event hosted by a leading perfumery in Zurich.

The Venue

The so called “scent night” was hosted in a château-like villa that was originally built for a wealthy family around 1910 and which is now used for a variety of events.

The event took place on a really sunny and warm day and one could enjoy the view and the park that surrounds the villa.

Exquisite refreshments were served to the audience. Some perfumers attended the event and explained the concept behind their products. The latter might be the reasons why some women were wearing stilettos without any training and with even less elegance completing their look with an excessive make-up.

Lengling Perfumes

Although the name sounds very oriental Mr and Mrs Lengling are from the German city of Munich. Their perfume is definitely not a mass product but the company is an exclusive rather small manufacture.

Mrs Lengling explained to us that she always liked to paint and when creating a new scent she is inspired by the images she paints from memories of special moments.

The brand is quite young and at the moment they have 8 different creations.

The thing that I remember best is the cap of the bottles. It is an exact copy of a real pebble-stone from the river Isar that flows through Munich.


New York is the home of the Perfumerie Vilhelm. Also these fragrances are based on the founder’s (Jan Ahlgren) memories. The same goes for the name itself. Vilhelm was Jan’s grandfather. The bottles are very modern and I much appreciate Vilhelm’s signature colour: yellow.

At the moment my favourite scent is called “Basilico & Fellini” and – at least according to my nose – it is full of summer and freshly mown grass.

Roja Dove

Mr Dove was of course the star of the evening. The maestro worked many years for the House of Guerlin before setting up his own shop. Just for the record; he has a shop in Harrods London.

Since I know many of his fragrances – out of his collection “Danger” is my preferred scent – and a lot of people surrounded him I did not test more perfumes but instead marvelled at the master perfumer’s exquisite attire.

Apart from an extravagant blue blazer made of a material which looked like brocade with a baroque pattern he wore striking shoes. (Yes, you know that I am crazy for shoes). I am not entirely sure about the material; it looked like black velvet but I am absolutely sure about the decoration. The shoes were star-studded. Just that the “stars” were crystals.

Mr Dove does not create a brand. He IS a brand.

Montale Paris

The founder Pierre Montale has a proclivity for the Orient. The House Montale offers more than 80 fragrances; traditional, yet modern.

The bottles are most striking. They are made of aluminium, reminding of hairspray and bearing an unbeatable advantage: the content never changes since it is protected from light and other environmental conditions.

The Longing for Coffee Beans

I am sure you can picture how many different fragrances my nose had been exposed to at this state. It was more or less unconscious. How to give it a quick recovery? Well, coffee beans are magic not only for espresso but also to neutralize scents and to give your nose a break. Unfortunately among all this luxury coffee had been forgotten.

Although this prevented me from testing the other scents too I very much enjoyed the event and learned a lot of interesting facts about the art of perfume creation.



1. Your training sessions only take 12 minutes. Of course this is handy but is it also effective?

Yes, absolutely. A good and effective training never depends on its duration but on its intensity and quality. To achieve this you need coaches with know-how and a training programme that suits the purpose. In the 24club, the set of exercises is comparable to the ingredients of a meal is for a chef. The important question is: “How much of what?”. In the twelve minutes of training there are exercises one does standing, sitting or jumping while others require full body tension. We combine the exercises in a way that fits everybody. Everybody will benefit; no matter if you are a professional athlete or just the opposite.

In a personal training like the one we offer in the 24club there are always coaches that point out and help you correct mistakes and who make sure you keep up your motivation. A training must be fun and it also has to offer highest quality and effectivity.

2. The next 12 minutes your clients use for relaxation. Why is this so important?

The term relaxation is not easy to understand. When I am talking about relaxation I do not only mean to relax physically but also mentally. About 60 000 thought per day are buzzing in our heads. We think of the past, of the future and also ponder on problems. The relaxation included in our programme is designed to give you a break from all this. To simply let go is a challenge for many people; especially in times of “burnout” or “chronical stress”. With our relax boxes we created some space for this kind of relaxation. In just twelve minutes.

3. How did you come up with this idea?

After many years of competitive sports, the pressure to perform and several injuries I asked myself: “How long do you want to carry on with this?”

Besides I already worked in the fitness industry where I could pass all my know-how to various people within the industry. But I wanted more. What I wanted is to have my very own fitness concept that is a 100% me.

Fast forward..

When I sat in a coffee shop in New York I pondered on the most important questions about the health of modern people. Quickly I realized that there were three important factors:

  • the time issue
  • the shortage of physical activity
  • relaxation

Hence I wanted to create a fitness programme that would solve all three problems at once. Moreover, it should be accessible and feasible for all people. In my head the 24club was born. A year and a half later I opened the first club in Zurich.

4. You see your club not as another training centre but as a life style location. What audience do you address?

When I developed this concept in 2015 in New York people frequently asked this question. It was difficult to answer as the training should be feasible for everybody. Now after more than a year of experience in my own club all I can is confirm this hypothesis. Our youngest member is 13 years old and the oldest one is 76. Also, very active people and top athletes are training with us. In a nutshell: Mangers, students and even people who are curing their burnout are train regularly in the 24club.

The 24club is the right place for everybody who does not go for crowded fitness centres. Our place is manageable, the training is effective and it can be integrated in your everyday-life. You as a client are carefully looked after.

5. At the moment there is one Club in Zurich. Will there be more?

This concept is designed to be multiplied and to be rolled-out to different locations. At the moment we are in Zurich. But maybe also in other places. How knows? It is an exciting journey and maybe one day we can open a studio at the place where the idea was born.

The Action of 24 Minutes Explained in 60 Seconds.


Stefan Schwitter was a professional wrestler for many years. All his knowledge on sports, health and nutrition is in the concept of the 24club. This means all his clients can benefit from this.


This week another article about the 24club has been published (Geman only). Please click here if you want to read it.


Last week I promised you interviews. This is the first of them. Let’s be specific. It is the translation of the first interview.


1. You have been developing web-applications and websites since 1996 and are constantly watching the trends. What has proved the most important change on the web within the last 5 years?

The most important trend by far is the so called responsive design? In Switzerland more than 85% of the users surf the web on their mobile devices; foremost smartphones. For that reason a correct display of a website has become even more important since it determines the first impression. As you know there is no second chance for a first impression.

2. What is responsive design really and when is it a good one?

The adaptation to the respective screen size must be seamless. No matter if the user is surfing the web by smartphone, tablet or PC the site must always look aesthetic and legible. Even images must adapt according to the total screen size.

A simple and clear navigation has always been important. Yet it has become even more important due to the limited space on a smartphone screen. It still must be easy to handle.

The content of the pages – especially texts – should be short and clear. Epic information will not be read on a smart phone.

3. You are programming software solution. Where do you specialise?

I have been focusing on online solutions for years. It is another trend that software solutions are going online. The advantages are obvious. Online solutions do not require specific hardware, operating systems or the installation of additional applications because they are accessible on your browser from anywhere you like. An online software offers more than just the administration of your data but also builds the interface to your customers. Let’s take the example of an online-shop. The shopper enters his or her data which will serve to establish an invoice or a delivery note automatically. No data transfer to another system is required.

I specialise in the development of individual solutions which are an exact match to my customer’s requirements. Thanks to many years of experience in various industries I can offer support already in the conception phase.

4. There is quite some competition in this field. What makes yous services unique?

I do not use standard products; not for web shops nor for other solutions or websites. My emphasis lies on an easy handling of the CMS systems. This is possible because they really offer exactly those functions the respective customer needs which is not the case for standard solutions.

WorldService delivers everything from one single source. Our products and solutions are developed in house at attractive prices and within the agreed timeline. This also provides the client with a high investment protection. Since I coded the solutions it is easy to programme additional features and functions if the client needs them.

5. If you could give one advice to companies or private owners who need an online solution; what would it be?

Get an expert on board right already in the conception phase of your solution. The concept determines the success of your online-solution which happens long before the coding begins. Write down a clear definition of your goals and describe your project. I happily support you.

Portrait. WorldService.

Daniel Haug is the founder and owner of WorldService and an expert for online solutions. His expertise goes back to 1996. Among others he created software solutions for the following industries:

  • Scuba diving
  • Catering
  • Automotive
  • Retail

WorldService also offers online-services to companies or individuals. All services are available on demand at very attractive conditions. Please click on the links below if you want to know more you  want to try them for free.

P.S. All websites are in German. No worries, call Daniel, he speaks English, too.

CRM System with Integrated Newsletter function

CRM easy is designed to manage address data but offers many more functions. One of it is a built in newsletter function. If you are blogging it automatically reads your blog’s RSS feed and sends your articles as newsletters at the time you determine to the target group you like.

Innovative Marketing

E-Card Tool is an ideal marketing instrument that fits in any website. You can send customised cards individually or to a target group.


I let others decide on my charm but I certainly can tell about my busy schedule. This time I will just give you an outlook of what you can expect and on what I am working right now.

People. Their Businesses & Careers.

Pure Lifestyle

In June I will visit a so called “scent night”. This is an event hosted by one of Zurich’s leading perfume shops. Some big names such as Roja Dove himself will appear personally. Of course I will tell you about it.

Me, Myself & I

I will give you some details on my CV and on how I can support retailers going digital.

On Charm. Loretta Young Speaks for Herself


Louis Comfort Tiffany

The jewellery shop Tiffany & Co. has been founded by Carl Lewis Tiffany in 1837. We will talk about the famous Tiffany Glass Company that was founded by Carl’s son named Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933) in 1885.

The elegant and colourful lamps that were manufactured in the ateliers of the Tiffany Glass Company should become famous and sought after all over the world shortly after their invention.

The design was a mixture of aestheticism of the 19th century and Art Nouveau. The lamp shades had a similar construction as the glass windows in churches. Coloured glass had to be cut accurately and put together to flowers, dragonflies or abstract designs. Finally, the pieces were soldered with copper strips.

Tiffany’s lamps required a special kind of glass for which the company held the patent.

Clara Driscoll. Surprise!

To the world it was clear that the designer of this lamps was Mr Tiffany himself.  After his death in 1933 the company’s files were destroyed and only in 2005 researchers discovered letters with detailed descriptions of how to manufacture the famous Tiffany models “Peony”, “Dragonfly” and “Wisteria”.

Surprisingly, the writer of these letters was not Louis Comfort Tiffany but someone hitherto unknown to the rest of the world. The author was a designer by the name of Clara Driscoll (1861-1944). She completed her studies at the Design school in Cleveland (Ohio) and at the Metropolitan Museum Art School. Around 1888 she started working at Tiffany’s and stayed in the company for more than 20 years.

Not only did she have a key role in the design and development of Tiffany’s finest lamps but also she managed an entire group of women working as glass cutters. Remember, these lamps have always been very precious since they were handmade.

As it seems Clara created light but she and the glass ladies were never in the spot light.

A New Light on Tiffany: Clara Driscoll and the Tiffany Girls



Probably to most people (me included) tend to make the following equation: Design = Brand/Label. Nevertheless, I believe that this is wrong since literally everything we see has a design. I tend to look at design as a plan or a concept. In other words: design is something beyond individual taste.

The Math of Nature

Living creatures such as plants, animals and humans have been designed by nature’s evolution. Already in 1202, the Italian mathematician Leonardo Fibonacci released a mathematical model describing the system nature builds leaves, flowers, shells and other things. This sequence is called “Fibonacci numbers”.

The Evolution of Cities

I agree that most cities and even many houses are products of an evolution. Wars and natural disasters destroyed them and people rebuild them “organically”. Modern architects have to plan around these structures. Still, they now have a design. After all it is a planned decision (whatever the reasons) which part of the city or buildings remain “old-style” and which ones have to be replaced by a newly planned addition.

Other cities like Brasilia, Chandigarh (India), Manhattan or Canberra have been planned from scratch by urban designers. The streets are numbered and mostly in a rectangular order.

Plans and Maps

If we think of maps – especially of European ones – “design” or “plan” are not the first notions jumping in our minds. Although the individual roads are planned the entire picture looks very organic. A mountain pass is never rectangular and roads typically run along the topography rather than a ruler.

Genius Is Simplifying Things

Did you ever look at a modern plan of the London Underground or the Métro in Paris or probably any other modern city? I assume you did. Did you notice that they are all designed according to the same system? I take the liberty to assume that subconsciously did but never thought about it.

So did I, until I read of Henry Beck (1902-1974). He worked as a technical designer for the London Transport. While the Tube grew larger and larger Mr Beck noticed that the plans grew more confusing with every station they added to the railway system.

5 Steps to Ingenious Simplicity

Mr Beck was obviously very committed to his job since he searched for remedy to this complication in his spare time.

In 1931 he presented to his bosses a schematic plan with the following changes and features

  1. Instead of drawing the distances between the stations in scale he choose the same distance between each of them
  2. The strokes that marked the lines where either drawn horizontally, vertically or in angles of 45 degrees
  3. He used an individual colour for each line so it was easy to see which line served with station to get the passengers to their destination
  4. Each station appeared as a short stroke on the map
  5. Only the stations with an interchange facility were marked with a diamond shape

The Result Turned Out to Be Contagious

Although a bit reluctant, the management of the London Underground decided to give the new schematic plan a try and printed a small amount to be handed out to passengers.

The echo was overwhelming, people loved the clarity of this plan and it soon took over. Other cities used Beck’s design for their public transport systems.

Harry Beck took care of the update of “his” plan until 1960. If you compare his version from 1931 and the modern London Tube you’ll find little difference concerning the design.

Also the plan for the streetcars and busses in the town of Zurich look the same.

Bottom Line

Not only Beck’s design is ingenious but also it fit the time. Remember, in 1919 the famous Bauhaus where function was “wrapped in design” opened its doors and was very influential until it had to close in 1933. Although Mr Beck says he did not understand much about modern art he had a liking for maps that were as clear as a technical plan.

I’d say he understand that sometimes less is more.


We all get online-surveys from time to time. Depending on the subject they take from two minutes to almost an hour.

If I like a brand, a product or a company I am always willing to support them and to give honest and fair feedback. But sometimes the survey is so annoying that I cannot be bothered completing it. Probably I am not alone with this symptom.

I guess there is a large percentage of people that start the survey but abort it after a very short time. From my point of view there are three key elements that should be taken into account if companies want their surveys to be completed.

What Is the Purpose of this Survey?

Typically, companies give you a more or less believable reason why they need your answer. If it is missing I will delete the e-mail straight away.

Only Ask Relevant Questions

If you are – like me – almost constantly online you cannot avoid feeding Google with a lot of records about your activities and also develop a sense of how much you want to reveal about yourself and your life. So you are careful with your answers.

I expect the questions to be relevant for purpose stated on the invitation e-mail. Recently I received a request form an e-learning platform which wanted to make sure that their suggestions are accurate to their audience’s preference.

Of course they want to know if I knew their competitors, if I studied at a University etc.

But why did they ask about my income? Of course there are many reasons this information might be of interest but not for the indicated purpose. Moreover, I thought that this is none of their business and closed the browser window.

Respect Time

“Take 3 minutes for our survey”. That’s fine and I open it. Just formulate the questions as clearly that 3 minutes will suffice to answer them. I observe quite frequently that you open the survey and find yourself confronted with 20 questions, each with 10 possible answers plus an “other reasons” field. Clearly, it will take more than three minutes with tests the users’ tolerance.

No doubt there are studies that require 45 minutes from you. If you signed up for them because after some weeks the company will share the results with you your time might be a very good investment.

If you have other aspects to be taken into account I am curious to learn about them.


“Harper’s Bazaar” was founded in 1867 as “Harper’s Bazar” (with only one A) and was the first magazine of its kind. As you already can see on the cover the mission was clear: “A repository of fashion. Pleasure and Instruction.”

The layout changed throughout the decades and somewhere in the late 1920ies or the very early 1930ies the second A appeared in the magazine’s name.

A New Face

In 1934 a young Russian by the name of Alexey Brodovitch was appointed the new art director. When he joined the company the “Harper’s Bazaar” was already a household name.

When a product is already known it is always a big risk to change the appearance since people could not recognize it anymore or – even worse – you lose your regular customers. Let’s see how Brodovitch dealt with this challenge:

Decluttering the Layout

There are some remarkable measures that made the entire magazine layout less busy and more generous looking. This was so unusual that the layouts became iconic.

The Cover

  1. A new, very sharp font was created for cover. It is the same font Harper’s Bazaar uses to this day. For the sake of perfection it was amended for a certain edition but the style was still the same.
  2. Brodovitch hired some of the best photographers for his covers
  3. The title was put as closed to the edge as only possible. This way he gained more room for the cover photo
  4. He reduced the amount of colours drastically and only worked with highlighters or he cropped the motive and put it on a white background.

The Articles

Brodovitch was the first one to use both pages for the layouts which made each of them attractive and unique as you can see on the image below.

Why Did It Work?

Personally, I believe that two main ingredients made this idea such a hit:

  1. Brodovitch was aware of his responsibility and knew of the value of the magazine. On the cover of the edition of October 1947 the name “Harper’s” is in ancient looking lettes that remind of a glamourous past
  2. He was bold enough to do something really innovative of top quality

If ever I should have such a flash of inspiration I’ll share it with you. I wish you an inspiring week.