Explore the world's #1 largest database of ideas and innovations, with over 400,000 inspiring examples.
Uncover major shifts and emerging opportunities with our exclusive PRO research.
Trend Reports
Discover why 750 brands rely on our AI-powered Trend Reports to get better, faster insights.
Join over 200,000 subscribers who rely on our weekly newsletter to keep up with need-to-know trends and insights.
Join 20,000,000+ people getting better and faster with our New York Times Bestselling methods, best innovation books & keynote videos.
Get special access to premium content, topic tracking and customizable tools through our AI-powered Dashboard.
Learn how the Trend Hunter harnesses the power of artificial intelligence.
Enhance your innovation potential with a deeper understanding of your unique innovation archetype and how your organization benchmarks.
Accelerate innovation and ignite disruptive thinking with our award-winning programs and research.
Keynotes & Workshops
Empower your team with the insights and frameworks they need to innovate better and faster.
Custom Research
Get fast, customized trend reports, presentations and deep dives 20x faster than traditional research.
Get started today with a free consultation, our self-serve tools, or a dedicated program.
Jeremy Gutsche
Ignite your event with our CEO, a NY Times Bestselling Author and one of the top innovation keynote speakers.
Our Team of Futurists
Inspire your group with our most popular speakers on innovation, trends, change and futurism.
Get in touch to learn more, ask a question or submit a tip.
About Us
Learn more about Trend Hunter and how we accelerate innovation.
Get answers to common questions about Trend Hunter.
Stay on the cutting-edge with the help of the Trend Hunter community.
Meet the team trusted by hundreds of leading businesses worldwide.
Find opportunities to accelerate your career with the #1 Trend Firm.
Grow your professional skillset in an award-winning workplace.
Catch up on noteworthy Trend Hunter news and media mentions.
Build a portfolio and put your trend-spotting abilities to the test.
Supercharge your marketing by partnering with Trend Hunter.
Visit your public portfolio and browse your past articles.
Add a Trend
Write up an article and showcase your trend-spotting skills.
My Trends
Edit your articles and see how they stack up on the leaderboards.
Edit your profile, connect your social media accounts, and more.
Add a trend, customize your dashboard, or track topics.
Future Festival
World Summit
Join the world's top innovators at our 3-Day Toronto event.
1-Day Innovation Events
Explore our 2019 tour dates and find the best city to inspire your team.
Custom Events
Host a custom innovation conference in your city that will inform and inspire.
Custom Training
Bring the Future Festival experience directly to your team with custom training packages.
Search our database of over 390,000 cutting edge ideas.

Chris Smith, Founder of Swarm Communications (INTERVIEW)

PR Consultant for Social Businesses

— January 14, 2012 — Social Good
Today we're featuring our interview with Chris Smith, founder of Swarm Communications, a media company we profiled recently that helps promote organizations doing good in the world. In addition to his consulting practice, Chris blogs for the Guardian Social Enterprise Network and is a registered mentor with the Media Trust, and Unltd, which in 2010 named Chris mentor of the year.

In the answers below, he shares the inside scoop on what it's like to help social enterprises get the word out through marketing, public relations and other communication services.

4 Questions with Chris Smith, Founder of Swarm Communications

1. How did the idea for the business model come about?
There’s no reason why social enterprises should struggle to get heard or get short changed on service just because they can’t afford the mega fees of the big PR agencies -- but I’m afraid they often are. I came up with the idea for Swarm after working in some of these big agencies myself and feeling that I wanted to take what I’d learnt and apply it to working with people that I admire and find personally inspiring. My business is very lean and virtual in nature and whilst that’s a turn off for some, it attracts people like social entrepreneurs who care more about the outcome and the service rather than whether they can visit some plush offices in the city.

2. How did you decide to join this sector?
Over my career, I’ve worked with all kinds of organisations from big consumer brands, blue-chip businesses, government departments to campaigning charities – but it’s social businesses that really inspire me. For me, social enterprise take the best bits of the charity world (the wish to change the world) and the best bits of the business world (drive, innovation and creativity) to make a really inspiring (there’s that word again) combination. I’m a big fan of stories and storytelling and most social enterprises have got great stories behind them too. The people behind enterprises are normally really passionate people and I’m a big fan of using these stories to help them define themselves in the market and differentiate themselves from the competition. For a start-up, reputation is everything so it’s really important that they do everything possible to manage it effectively – right from the beginning.

3. How do you get your inspiration?
I really enjoy working with people who are entrepreneurial, have a passion for what they do and who have big ideas. I’m lucky enough to work with some pretty outstanding people and it’s usually from them that I get my inspiration and hopefully, my creativity. New ideas don’t just pop into your head from nowhere – I think you need to spend time talking to people, discussing new solutions to problems.

4. How do you reset yourself to be creative? Do you have any rituals?
I don’t think we were designed to sit at desks or work in big offices -- I know I wasn’t! I’m lucky enough to live in a beautiful part of the UK so when I’m feeling a bit phased (or out of coffee!), I have to get out of the office, walk up a hill, go for a run, get some air into my lungs.