Huge shout out to the totally tireless, amazing MKTG and Team Epic team effort out in San Francisco in pulling off no less than dozens of truly awesome activations.
In case you missed it, we’ve kept our social feeds active with content from the week including our very own video content series called “Theo on the Street” that we’ve posted to our brand newYouTube Channel as well as Facebook, Instagram, etc. Check it out below!
Theo on the Street: Super Bowl City & Levi’s Lot
Theo on the Street: NFL Experience
Be sure to follow all of our social channels below! This was for sure our best Super Bowl yet!
MUMBAI: Dentsu Aegis Network is bring ing its New York-based lifestyle marketing agency MKTG to India. The agency will be merged with Dentsu Aegis’ recently-acquired event management company Fountainhead Entertainment, which was renamed as Fountainhead psLive.
The new unit will now be called Fountainhead-MKTG. “In India, the lifestyle marketing solutions mar ket is growing at twice the rate of the ATL (above-the line) market. The formation of Fountainhead MKTG will help us achieve our mission of being the second-largest agency group by end 2017 in India,” said Ashish Bhasin, chief executive officer, South Asia at Dentsu Aegis Network.
The development marks the end of the psLive, the London-based media and communication firm’s experiential marketing unit, in India.
Fountainhead has over 200 employees across offices in Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru. The first phase of the merger will focus on knowledge transfer, import of technology and training. One major objective of this new unit will be to create intellectual properties for brands, the company said.
Heading out to San Francisco for the Big Game? Or are you a native SF-er excited to explore Super Bowl events in the area? We sat down with with our very own Patty Hubbard (President, West Coast) to get the full download on everything SB50. From the can’t miss events to what to wear, the below is all you need to know while on the ground for the Super Bowl.
1. What are the top 3 spots for local families to experience SuperBowl 50?
Super Bowl City: Officially opening tomorrow, 1/30, SuperBowl City will open for an extra weekend called Hometown weekend in order to provide local residents an opportunity to see it first. Make sure to go to the Fan Energy Zone powered by SAP, the Super Bowl City Fan Wall and the Levi’s Lot to get your Levi’s Collection fan gear.
Free Concerts: With performers including Alicia Keys, Matt Nathanson and Chris Isaak, the Super Bowl free concert series will include performances your family will love without breaking the bank. All shows will be in SuperBowl City at City Stage presented by Levi’s. Be sure to check out the full schedule here.
NFL Experience: From sampling delicious snacks and drinks to taking part of the NFL’s famed Play60 program, NFLX at the Moscone Center will ensure a full day of fun (many of which are brought to you by MKTG!) Open all week, NFLX is a must-see for local and visiting fans alike. Kids and adults can’t miss the amazing photo opps with NFL players and the Lombardi trophy that NFLX has to offer. You can learn about all experiences and ticket prices here.
2. What activities do you recommend to those who have never been been to San Francisco?
Go for a run: It is the best way to see and experience the city.Hereare some great running routes that will show you all the beauty of SF.
Ferry: Take a ferry ride to Tiburon for lunch at Sam’s Anchor Café.
Eat, Drink and be Merry: Enjoy a hot toddie and get off your feet atToscain North Beach.
3. How should you pack for SF weather and Super Bowl social events?
The key to packing for San Fran is to be prepared and to plan your outfits around layering. Dress for 55 degrees, but a cold 55. Trust me you will understand when you are here and can’t warm up. We are also having an el Nino year so bring an umbrella and a rain coat. Events are rain or shine. Last but not least, SF is a beautiful eclectic city. That being said, SF-ers are a fun, cool bunch and dress more casually than other major cities.
4. What are some of the hottest party and concert tickets?
Super Bowl week is infamous for the craziest parties. Some, like Maxim, are exclusive and you are only able to access tickets with an invitation code. Others are open to the general public, but for a price. Events like CBS’s “The Night Before” with Metallica and Cage the Elephant can be accessed after a quick trip to Ticketmaster.com. For a full list of events, and their grades, take a look at the Washington Post’s listhere.
5. Are there any last details we should know?
Here is an amazing summary of transportation options for all SB50 events—note that you will need to plan out your trip accordingly since transportation will be tough throughout Super Bowl week. Last but certainly not least, be sure to tune in for the big game on Sunday, 1/7 at 6:30 PM EST.
JW Marriott’s newest property, in Los Cabos, Mexico, got a warm welcome last week with a launch event that took guests on a once-in-a-lifetime journey — a vision journey.
Set alongside the five-star resort’s multiple infinity pools, the grand opening celebration showcased the property’s breathtaking ocean views, among the minimal and modernist lines of award-winning architect Jim Olson’s designs. The event explored the ancient tribal traditions of Baja Sur by guiding guests through the three stages of the tribal ceremony known as the vision journey. At each stage, guests were immersed in a culinary, cultural or well-being tradition of the region.
The two-day grand opening of the property began with an oceanfront welcome cocktail reception set under the stars, featuring an unforgettable menu from acclaimed chef Thierry Blouet that included locally inspired options such as grilled octopus, specialty mezcal cocktails, and edible flowerpots evocative of local plants.
The launch event also offered guests a curated selection of daytime activities highlighting the property’s culinary, cultural and well-being offerings, from cooking demonstrations to mezcal-and-chocolate tastings to guided art tours to treatment’s at JWMLC’s own Jasha Spa.
As the sun set over the Sea of Cortez, JW Marriott Los Cabos’s Envision the Infinite gala launched with the sounding of four traditional shamanic shellhorns. Guests were then guided through the three stages of the traditional vision quest, each one set at a different part of the property and highlighting its own tribal tradition.
In shamanic tradition, the first stage of the vision journey, known as The Hunter, makes use of a power plant of sacred significance. Guests at the JW Marriott Los Cabos launch event began their journey with a lively, family-style banquet feast that highlighted the culinary specialties of the property and featured the pitaya, an indigenous fruit that was celebrated annually by the ancient tribes of Baja Sur.
In the second stage of the shamanic journey, known as The Warrior, journeyers explore their vision through an act of creativity. Guests at the JW Marriott Los Cabos gala were invited to observe as an artist, inspired by the ancient cave art of the region, explore his own vision using water as his canvas.
The final stage of the journey, known as The Sage, is achieved via a ritual known as temazcal. JWMLC guests completed their own shamanic journeys with a climactic, electronic smoke show featuring a neon temazcal dome, sand-dune light projections, custom cocktails containing regional herbs, and a performance by headlining musical act Betty Who.
I think most of us would agree that the Super Bowl Halftime show is always one of the most talked about parts of the event, and this year should be no exception! Coldplay was recently announced to be one of the acts of this year’s Pepsi Halftime Show and documented some of the planning that goes into making this epic event a success! It’s taken six months of planning, endless hours of blood, sweat and tears and we are now 17 days away from seeing it all come together! Take a look at the behind the scenes video just released by Pepsi today to see a bit of what goes into getting ready for the big day!
The Super Bowl 50 Host Committee announced the entertainment lineup for its free-to-the-public fan village, “Super Bowl City presented by Verizon.” With more than 35 free performances by Grammy-winning headliners, community performers and local Bay Area favorites, Super Bowl City will showcase two stages; The City Stage presented by the Levi’s® brand and the Fan Stage in the Fan Energy Zone powered by SAP.
“Over the course of nine days, visitors to Super Bowl City will be treated to free concerts by some of the world’s most notable artists and the Bay Area’s finest performers,” said Keith Bruce, CEO of the Super Bowl 50 Host Committee. “Whether it’s local groups like Loco Bloco or musicians like the Bay Area’s Chris Isaak, the culture and fabric of the region will be well-represented.”
In a break from tradition, Super Bowl City will be open for an extra weekend this year, providing local residents the opportunity to experience the excitement of Super Bowl 50 before out-of-town guests arrive. Super Bowl City will open Saturday, January 30, with the day’s activities topped off with the Host Committee’s “Saturday Night Lights” celebration: the official re-lighting of the iconic Bay Lights on the Willie L. Brown, Jr. Bay Bridge, followed by the Macy’s Fireworks Show and a performance by the Bay Area’s own Chris Isaak.
The City Stage presented by Levi’s® will next feature the CBS Radio Concert Series, with free headlining performances kicking off on February 3 with singer-songwriter Matt Nathanson, followed by country group The Band Perryon February 4.
Pop rock bandOneRepublic on February 5. In addition to OneRepublic, Friday night will feature a second Macy’s Fireworks Show.
Super Bowl Week will be capped with a special, free performances by Levi’s brand ambassador and fifteen-time Grammy Award winning superstar Alicia Keys and opening act Goapele, the singer-songwriter from Oakland on Saturday, February 6.
Located in the Sue Bierman Park area of Super Bowl City, The City Stage presented by Levi’s® is being produced in conjunction with LiveNation, and was designed to showcase a wide variety of free live musical, cultural and performing arts entertainers throughout Super Bowl Week.
Located in Justin Herman Plaza within Super Bowl City, the Fan Stage is being produced in conjunction with e2k events and will be the “live” area of the Fan Energy Zone, serving as a presentation space for community partners, celebrity appearances and photo opportunities, and the main space for the DJs and MCs.
Click here to check out the full list of performances.
We are so thrilled and proud to have been representing the San Francisco Bay Area Super Bowl 50 Host Committee for the last 16 months, including developing and running THIS AWESOME TOUR. It has been such an exciting road and we can hardly contain ourselves that The Big Game less than 20 days away. And, the major fan activations kick off on January 30th across the Bay Area, just 12 days from now!
MKTG and Team Epichave got you covered, as we are helping some of SB50’s biggest partners activate fan experiences like you’ve never seen before. From events at the NFL Experience at the Moscone Center, to Super Bowl City along Market Street, and beyond, follow us on our social feeds (and our hashtag #MKTGEpic) listed below. We’ll not only help you prepare for your visit to The Bay Area, but keep you posted in real time thanks to our on-the-ground team who will be in the thick of it all. The countdown continues and WE ARE READY!
Another year, another CES, the infamous consumer electronics expo that beckons technocrati from around the globe to descend on the Las Vegas Strip each year—converting Sin City into a veritable shopping mall of the future for one fleeting week. Drawing in well over 3,800+ exhibitors and 170,000+ attendees each year, CES is an undisputed premier tech conference filled to the brim with the latest tech—from the mundane to the paradigm shifting. It’s here that innovators, brands, media, and marketers all collide and mingle to learn about what’s new, what’s next, and frankly just geek out at all the cool stuff.
While a good portion of the products on the show floor never quite make it to mass-market consumer adoption in the ways they are shown then. CES has never truly been about the short-term future; it’s been about pushing boundaries and expanding our definitions of what’s possible. A proof of concept, if you will, to show the world just how innovative the world can be. The present may be set, but the future is infinitely pliable. Naysayers and pessimists may call that outlook naïve, but you can’t get to the next big idea without a couple quirky first steps to help you along the way.
As our clients/brands become increasingly more comfortable exploring new technologies and emerging mediums of engagement, here’s what we’re seeing will be hot experiential trends for 2016:
Wearables are here to stay. With the continued maturation of the industry and shift from fitness to health and wellness, expect to see them pop up more and more in brand activations as takeaways and experience enhancers. The form factor for sensors in general has become increasingly smaller and durable over the years, enabling one of the more intriguing items on the show floor this year to come to fruition: smart clothing. Companies such as Sensoria have utilized textile sensors to create more seamless / intuitive experiences, in this case a pair of sensor embedded socks that track your running (from run cadence to foot impact).
Sensors are getting even smarter. As all the tech companies race to bring the first fully autonomous car to market, the sensor industry (particularly, object detection and identification) has seen a huge boom in innovation. Netamo announced their outdoor security camera system “Presence” to critical acclaim, the camera includes a robust identification software that can distinguish between people, cars, and animals with surprising speed and accuracy.
What does this all mean, you ask? Simple. Continued innovations in wearables and sensors represent a prime opportunity for marketers to create more engaging and dynamic personal experiences that are tailored to each consumer.
At MKTG, we’ve been playing around with Virtual Reality for a couple of years now—carefully watching its development from a relatively unheard of niche gamer centric gizmo to a huge untapped new medium for filmmakers, artists, and brands.
2016 will be the year VR reaches critical mass. With the imminent release of high-end consumer facing VR (e.g. Oculus) later this year, and continued public interest for more mobile friendly VR (e.g. Gear VR and Google Cardboard), don’t expect to see the appetite for VR to drop any time soon.
The major VR players are pretty much set at this point: Oculus, HTC, Google, and Samsung. This year’s VR standouts at CES were mainly focused around hardware extensions for virtual reality environments. Products such as the Krush Moveo, Virtuix Omni, andInfinadeckall answer one problem that holds back full immersion in VR, movement.
While we’re still quite a ways off from a Star Trek like holodeck, with VR marketers have a unique opportunity to craft and deploy incredibly immersive experiences in virtually any location or condition.
IoT is the buzz word that inevitably gets thrown around each year at CES. While there is no shortage of smart products out in the marketplace, a clear winner for a universal/unified platform to manage all these smart devices has yet to emerge. As the public waits before taking the big plunge into smart homes, the industry has been busy creating micro-integrated ecosystems to whet consumers’ appetites.
To that effect, as consumers expectations shift from what a specific product or service provides individually, to how does this product add value to a connected lifestyle, thinking big picture and integrated will continue to be more and more important to brands and marketers.
TL;DR: Ongoing developments in wearables, VR, and sensors will enable marketers to easily create more tailored, personal, and brand experiences/activations in 2016.
With the countdown to the holiday break in full effect, we wanted to make sure all of our fantastic followers are well equipped to bring the holiday cheer. Show off your hospitality and bartending skills with the below list of holiday cocktails that will be sure to wow your friends and family.
The Zacapa Solera Hot Cocoa
1 1/4 ounces Zacapa Rum 23
1/2 ounce Pedro Ximenez Sherry
5 ounces Hot Cocoa
Grated Cinnamon and Cracked Pink Peppercorn for Garnish Combine rum, sherry and hot cocoa into a cocktail shaker. Shake well. Pour contents into glass mug. Garnish with grated cinnamon and pink peppercorn.
(Recipe by Lynnette Marrero for Zacapa)
An Old Fashioned Holiday
1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
1/2 orange peel
5 dashes Angostura bitters
1 1/2 ounces Bulleit bourbon
1 1/2 ounces apple cider Muddle sugar, peel and bitters until sugar dissolves. Add bourbon and apple cider and add ice.
Tanqueray Gin Flip
1 ¼ ounces Tanqueray® London Dry
½ ounce almond syrup
½ ounce heavy cream
3 dashes Angostura bitters Combine all ingredients in a shaker. Shake vigorously and pour into a coupe glass. Garnish with star anise. (Recipe courtesy of Tanqueray)
Morgan Mule 1.5 oz. Captain Morgan® Original Spiced Rum 4 oz. ginger beer 2 sprig(s) mint 2lime wheels Muddle a mint sprig and lime wheel in the bottom of a tall glass. Add rum and ginger beer. Garnish with mint and lime. (Recipe courtesy of Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum)
The Ketel Fig & Rosemary 1.5 oz. Ketel One Oranje® Flavored Vodka
1 tsp. Dalmatia original fig spread
1 small branch of rosemary
0.25 oz. fresh lemon juice
0.5 oz. simple syrup
3 dashes Angostura bitters
Club soda Dry shake Ketel One Oranje flavored vodka, fig spread and rosemary in a mixing glass. Add lemon juice and simple syrup and shake with ice. Strain into a highball glass filled with ice. Top with club soda and Angostura bitters. (Courtesy of Kettle One)
Don’t forget to get the party started with MKTG’s own Holiday Cheer mix on Spotify.
While on vacation in Finland, I had the opportunity to attend Slush Conference – one of Europe’s largest tech and startup conferences held annually in Helsinki. In it’s eighth year, the conference had 15,000 attendees, showcased over 1,700 startups and had 800 venture capitalists looking to invest in companies. Slush also had over 30 speakers – entrepreneurs, heads of state, and executives from the tech and media space – giving talks on topics ranging from the state of music and gaming technology, ecommerce and mobile payments, virtual reality, health technology, and the Internet of Things.
It became very evident that the Nordics are and will continue to be a major hub for global tech innovation. It is the birthplace of popular apps like Skype, Spotify, and of course Angry Birds. Attendees came from over 100 different counties eager to get a look at the next slew of emerging startups.
Though this was a tech focused event, its insights are applicable to the experiential marketing industry. We’re consumer driven and staying on top of trends both domestically and especially globally will help keep us on the cutting edge.
Some of my most notable observations include:
Importance of Design
I sat in on a panel titled “Why Design Should Be In Every Company’s DNA”. The panelists all shared the opinion that the world’s highest valued companies are also the most design driven. It’s a trend mostly attributed to companies like Apple that emphasize aesthetics in product development as much as functionality. Their main argument was that good design is critical to distinguishing one self from the competition. Venture capital firms are hiring more designers to vet investments, making a company’s focus on design as essential to its viability as its financials.
From an experiential POV, this couldn’t be more true as the design aspect for any program we touch is of the utmost importance. From what we have found, bringing the look and feel of our client’s brand to life ensures that consumers understand the brand’s marketing story and personality while they develop a relationship with its products.
A major theme of the conference was healthcare technology and innovations in the fitness and medical fields. I experienced various wearables and body monitors including heart rate and brainwave sensors, and a literal mood sensing ring. An Australian startup, CareMonkey, even won the 650,000 euro prize for best startup at Slush. CareMonkey is an app that automates the collection and distribution of sensitive personal data, saving time and the hassle of paper documentation. It also reduces the chance of medical errors by having all the crucial information easily and immediately accessible by mobile device.
Within the experiential space, we have seen wearables create ease for our event goers through wristbands. Today, the wristbands that were once only used for security purposes can do anything from sending event images to consumer emails to advising music festival attendees about what stages are the most or least crowded.
VR also had a large presence at Slush, and it was clear that the technology is still very much in its infancy but will continue to have a much large impact in our lives moving forward. VR gaming and video is already popular, immersive VR and augmented reality will get bigger, and its influence will eventually expand beyond the consumer space into industrial application. VR also allows experiential marketers to give consumers a behind the scenes look at premium experiences (i.e. half-time locker-room talks, sideline action, VIP access to concerts etc.)
On top of all of my above observations, the key learning I found from attending Slush was that the event itself was experiential marketing at its finest. The event developed an atmosphere of excitement ensuring that each attendee, from coder-extrodinaire to those who can’t determine a flip-phone from a smart phone, was engaged. DJs blasting EDM at the Welcome party and afterparties pushed attendees to network and feel comfortable in the high-tech setting while panels limited jargon and provided clear-cut visions of the future of tech.
CES will always be the go-to for the US, but I strongly recommend checking out SLUSH in upcoming years for a full 360 view of the future of tech and how it will affect marketing moving forward.