Today after finishing teaching my classes at Chapman University, I took a glance at the front page of Wall Street Journal and immediately spotted the to me very familiar city name “Lulea” (or Luleå in Swedish, 45 minutes north of my hometown of Piteå) atop one of the articles. The story was about Ice Music, a concert series held in an igloo in which musicians perform on instruments made out of ice, so-called “Icestruments”! A perfect example of a story that is remarkable, i.e., something that lends itself to be remarked about and thus easily spread on social media. Listen to this beatiful sample with a song called “Zombie Tango”:
So my native Swedish Lapland, Sweden's northernmost destination, has managed to create another international story. Why am I not surprised? No, not anymore after the ICEHOTEL became world news, or after Facebook's establishment of a data center in Luleå!
This past summer, I was pleased to bring yet another group of Chapman University MBA students to this exciting region as part of the Business in Scandinavia travel course. My students got to learn that there are many creative entrepreneurs up there in northern Sweden that are working hard to supplement the traditional base industries of mining, forestry, steel and paper mills with services and tourism-based industries.
In order to get some international attention and some buzz on social media, they also have some very capable marketing minds up there such as Tomas Riklund, Niklas Berg of In the Cold (the agency behind the ICEHOTEL website), and Ronny Olovsson at Vinter AB. And in Skellefteå, my travel course group got to spend two days with a congregation of world-class creative minds at the international event Creative Summit. Looking forward to reading about the next remarkable story from up there!