Archive for May, 2013

Making a Splash at America’s Cup

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AmericasCup_RedBullPhoto Credit: Google Images

Baseball has the World Series, Golf has the Masters, Major League Eating has Coney Island…and Sailing has America’s Cup. Coming this summer to the San Francisco Bay, the best of best in sailing jump on board a vessel (with a price tag beyond the GDP of most small countries*) to tack, jibe, and lean their way to the ultimate prize. There’s nothing luxurious about this type of sailing – human beings are pushed to the absolute limit in some of nature’s harshest and most dangerous conditions. Leave your top siders and spritzers at home.

For us marketing folks out there, the America’s Cup series provides a much larger opportunity for brands to uniquely position themselves in front of a global audience on the world’s nautical stage. There are premier boat sponsors such as Red Bull and J.P. Morgan, fashion and style promotions from Prada and Puma, official race timing held by Louis Vuitton, even celebratory champagne sponsors Moet. Brands both big and small manage to find a place in one of the many consumer interaction points provided by the sport.

You then look at technology giant Oracle and its sailing enthusiast CEO Larry Ellison who secured the top spot as the 2013 America’s Cup Global Partner. Oracle and sailing (and winning) now goes hand-in-hand. Coming off a victory in 2010, USA and team sponsor Oracle are out to defend their high priced, high reward title.

This may all seem overkill for a sport that few consumers have tried and even fewer understand, but much of what these companies have learned is that there’s truly something special about the America’s Cup. Some mystique, some prestige, plenty of thrills, this sport truly presents brands in a unique and exciting way.

*We’re for occasional exaggeration

SPECIAL NOTE: MKTG INC sends our sincerest condolences to the friends and family of Andrew Simpson.

Written by: Andrew Ward

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Houston, We Have Mach Speed

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RedBull1Photo Credit: Chris Liao

What does it take to make a leap from the edge of space?

One might say courage, or bravery, in the ceaseless pursuit to push the edges of science. And another might say that quintessential human drive to forge a legacy—to leave your mark on the sands of time.

Irrespective of the reason, those edges were pushed on October 14, 2012 when Felix Baumgartner became the first person to break the sound barrier in free fall—without the protection or propulsion of a vehicle. Sustaining supersonic velocity for 30 seconds of his four minute free fall, Baumgartner and the entire Stratos team worked tirelessly for five years to surpass this significant scientific milestone.

To commemorate the historic event, MKTG INC concepted and produced a traveling museum exhibit for the Red Bull Stratos Project. Visitors were able to learn about the history of the Stratos project, the team members, and the key scientific discoveries gleaned from Felix Baumgartner’s record-breaking fall 38,969.4 miles up in the stratosphere. Interactive slideshows, video, as well as the actual capsule and spacesuit used in the project kicked off on May 2, 2013 in Houston, TX at the Space Center Houston.

The exhibit will tour around the country into 2014.

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Nike+ FuelBand Gets Social

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Nike_FuelBand_App_Update_largePhoto Credit: news.cnet.com

Taking advantage of the ever-competitive nature of the fitness landscape, Nike+’s latest FuelBand app update will allow users the chance to leverage Facebook to demonstrate their fitness to their social network once and for all (read: time to talk some smack). For the first time, the FuelBand app will give its users the option to tag friends and post pictures from their workouts, overlay Fuel scores and Nike logos onto these photos and, most importantly, display their activity on a customizable leaderboard with friends.

These most recent developments for the FuelBand app certainly demonstrate Nike’s recognition of Facebook’s developer-friendly features for fitness apps that were introduced earlier this year. Furthermore, the added features serve to reinforce the growing trend amongst fitness-related technology of individuals sharing their progress with their respective circle of friends. What, you may ask, could be better than amassing a personal best 7,000 Fuel points on a summertime Saturday? How about sharing that score with your more “athletic” younger brother and sparking a whole new family rivalry?

While some may scoff at this sort of public humble-bragging, many in the industry believe that this social hook ultimately holds people more accountable to their fitness goals and influences them to work out more than they normally would otherwise. And while Facebook may not necessarily be concerned with having its user base remain fit, the company certainly won’t complain about the increased content and activity taking place on its site.  Seems like a win-win-win situation for Nike, Facebook, and FuelBand users alike.

Game on.

Written by: Willie Rudman

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Apps I’m Diggin’

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Welcome to the first installment of Apps I’m Diggin’. It’s a monthly column focusing on a few iOS applications I’ve currently been tinkering around with, which entails the overall user experience (UI), interface design, overall shelf life and “functionality.” As you probably notice, I put functionality in quotes because I have the tendency to interact with apps for reasons that may not have been intended by the creators, but please trust me when I say it’s nothing inappropriate.

DUNNO

DunnoApp

Dunno is an interesting little app that allows you to jot down a quick note on any subject you’re curious about or, more importantly, clueless about. Once you type in the subject, Dunno works discreetly in the background combing the internet for any information pertaining to your note while you continue with your day. The results you receive range from web pages, blogs, Wikipedia, images, news, videos, tweets, songs, podcasts and more. I found this app to be very effective while in the middle of group discussions, drifting in and out and back in again, to wake up to a comment that piqued my interest. But, of course, I don’t want to interrupt to ask a question, revealing my bluff. The user interface is simple and elegant with a beautiful design flow. Dunno strips down all the content to an easy digestible read, allowing the viewer to bookmark, share and save. The application was created for taking notes in class/meetings, preparing journals/blog articles, researching for a paper or planning a trip. I use it to hide my flakiness.

WHOSAMPLED

WhoSampled App

Anyone who knows me, knows I’m a big fan of classic gangster rap, like every other middle-class husky suburban jewish boy. So when I found Whosampled I immediately knew I had a great way to indulge my hip hop love and feed the addiction to chasing the influencers of my favorite old school mcs. It works like this, you type into the search field any artist and Whosampled displays a list of that artist’s songbook. Click on a song to see all of the musicians that were sampled in that particular track. Continue to dive deeper and play the exact soundclip “borrowed” on the track. You can also flip the sample to see what other artist have used the riff to help launch themselves into stardom. From there you can launch iTunes and download any of the singles. Whosampled interface and design are somewhat clunky and inflated, a couple of times losing one’s self in the sweet sweet chase it’s easy to forgive the clumsiness. My music collection has doubled since I downloaded this app, but must admit my cravings have not been curbed. I’m itching for another taste.


Written by: Mark Grundland

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Written by Admin
Admin

May 16th, 2013 at 7:47 pm

Internet pioneers

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First photo online, posted by Tim Berners-Lee (inventor of the World Wide Web)

First photo online, posted by Tim Berners-Lee (inventor of the World Wide Web)

At MKTG INC, we’re for leading the way, especially when it comes to building the brands of our clients with exciting new technologies.

So today we tip our hat to the digital pioneers, with a fun little compilation of Internet firsts: first email, first website, first banner ad, you get the idea. And if you think you’ve heard all this before, I bet you didn’t know that the first photo posted online was of the comedy girl group Les Horribles Cernettes.

Remember, you heard it here first.

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Written by Christopher Skinner
Christopher Skinner

May 8th, 2013 at 8:00 pm

There’s a Great Mural to This Story

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The Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project is all about honoring Hispanic art and culture here in the US. But last month the biggest honor of them all went to our winning muralist — Adriana Garcia of San Antonio, Texas.

Launched in August 2012, the Mural Project culled 10 artists representing 10 US states from a vast canvas of applicants. The 10 finalists were then asked to create a 5x10ft mural that brought to life their particular vision of a better world for their city. The winner was to be selected by vote, so since October MKTG INC has hosted gallery events in each artist’s city, allowing them to showcase previous works and gain support for the voting phase of the program. Fans voted for their favorite piece on the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Facebook page.

On April 17, the writing was on the wall for winner Adriana, who was awarded $15,000 for herself and $15,000 for her selected nonprofit, the San Antonio arts organization Centro Cultural Aztlan. More than 200 guests came out to support Adriana’s work in a fun and inspiring rewards ceremony. “Felicitaciones” to Adriana!

Written by Mike DelMonaco

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