We focus on the full experience here at SecretPenguin.

Most agencies focus on the first 1/8th of the experience:
The Assess phase – where a potential customer sees a brand and assesses if it’s relevant to them (typically through an advertisement).
Then it ends there.

However, if the experience is lacking, rarely will someone return because an ad or logo was clever.

That’s why we focus on the whole experience.

So after a person assesses if the brand is for them, we guide them through an 8 step process based on how people tend to psychologically interact with brands. 

To simplify, we break those 8 steps up into 3 phases:
• Before
• During
• After

And the emotions associated with each phase is:
• Before: Invited
• During: Welcomed
• After: Happy

Have you ever walked up to something you weren’t invited to?
It feels uncomfortable.

Ever been in a place and realize you’re not welcomed?
It feels uncomfortable.

Ever leave a place not happy you decided to spend your time/money there?
It feels uncomfortable. 

This is unfortunately how many people who happen to be neurodiverse can feel.

Autism Action Partnership and Common Senses Festival had a Symposium on “How to Create Inclusive Environments” with some incredible speakers who work with museums, performing arts spaces, and other cultural institutions such as The Smithsonian, Andy Warhol Museum, and many other places to be more inclusive.


1 – Education: We need to all learn that everyone reacts differently to sights, sounds, tastes, etc.

Example: Some need to stand, some need to move around, and some seem disengaged but are very engaged. It all varies. In reference to reacting to temperature, think about yourself… have you ever felt cold and another says they are warm? You’re both right and valid. 

2 – Environments need to change – not people: It’s not about teaching people the “proper” way to react. Instead, can we improve the environment?

Example: If a loud sound happens, think how you’d react. Seems normal to flinch and move away or cover your ears. Imagine if your audio sensory was heightened – and you were one out of a group that heard a noise and it felt loud. It doesn’t make your reaction invalid. It was uncomfortable to you.

It was a beautiful and inspiring day.

We are going to implement what we learned to enhance what we provide to our clients to ensure a better experience for all.

On a personal note, one speaker spoke of her daughter. They weren’t sure if she could walk. Fast forward to today, and she loves roller skating. 

I got up from that and talk and broke down in tears. 

Our daughter didn’t start walking until she was 3. She now loves to roller skate, as well.

I have had so many concerns that our daughter would have trouble feeling invited, welcomed, and happy in different environments and social situations. I broke down in tears because I’m seeing so many people working toward educating others and creating inclusive spaces for all – including my daughter.

Thank you, Common Senses Festival and Autism Action Partnership.

– Dave Nelson