Archive for May, 2014

The “Real Work” of Gatorade

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This year, Gatorade has been challenging the young football athletes of the globe to show us their real work through an online contest called “Unreal Around the World,” in which athletes upload a video of themselves putting in the real work necessary to give a great performance on the pitch. The athletes behind the top five winning videos will win a trip around the world with stops at the top football meccas of the world, such as the Gatorade Sports Science Institute in Bradenton, Florida,  London, Liverpool, AC Milan, FC Barcelona, Boca Juniors in Buenos Aires, Argentina), and Rio de Janeiro. To support the contest, MKTG INC is giving a taste of an unreal experience to a few elite footballers in London and New York.

On 26 May 2014, at the esteemed Emirates Stadium, 120 local athletes from academies were invited to take part in a competition that was like no other. Wearing technology that measured their biometric output, the teams were sent out to a divided pitch and started with rotations of small-sided games. Members of the Arsenal tech staff were on the sidelines providing their own assessments via an iPad scoring system. Athletes were awarded extra points for creativity and athletic ability.

Based on their scores from the wearable technology and the iPad scoring system, the top 12 overall players and the top 3 keepers were identified and highlighted in a final challenge of football drills. Drills were measured by time, creativity and accuracy.

The emotion of these athletes was intense; never before have they scored a goal to see a reaction of pyrotechnics, smoke and streamers, all in Emirates Stadium. One of the Arsenal legends, Martin Keown, made an appearance and awarded the top athletes with some words of wisdom and a congratulatory message.

Unreal Around the World will visit the New York area on May 30 at Sinatra Park in Hoboken, NJ.

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What Do You #RunFor?

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Expo BoothPhoto Credit: Michael Mauro

When you think of Pittsburgh, you might think of the Industrial Revolution, Ben Roethlisberger or the old Three Rivers Stadium. But the city offers so much more: it’s home to a burgeoning digital sector, a youth movement and one of the most engaging marathons in the country. 36,000 runners cross three rivers, five bridges and pass 60+ bands to create an atmosphere that is unmatched anywhere else.

Operating in their own backyard, local BMOC and title sponsor of the race, Dick’s Sporting Goods, is right in the middle of it all. And this year MKTG INC got to go along for the ride. In the days leading up to the race, the city’s energy homed in on the convention center where locals and tourists alike come to the expo in droves. To capitalize on the footfall, MKTG INC partnered with DSG to redesign the expo space, most noticeably with the addition of a 16ft replica of the Roberto Clemente Bridge running down the middle. People came. And then they stopped. And took pictures. And more pictures. And some took engagement pictures (seriously).

Beyond the bridge, runners came to shop at the only official apparel retailer for the race and to join the #RunFor movement. With two opportunities to share their motivation, the space generated thousands of submissions and hundreds of photos posted to Twitter and Instagram.

But what about race day? As the bang from the starter’s pistol neared, DSG brand ambassadors were the first to greet runners and fans, some 30,000 strong, at the start line long. But most importantly, DSG focused on the runners. At Mile 24, as the runners headed towards the home stretch, a DSG emcee was there to welcome them, call them by name and remind them what they personally #RunFor. The adrenaline rush was obvious, as heads lifted, gritted teeth turned to smiles, and slow trots turned to…slightly faster trots.

As the last runner – a firefighter in full gear with his engine behind him – passed the Mile 24 station, it was clear that MKTG INC and DSG had left their imprint on the race and on the city. That’s exactly what we #RunFor.

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Written by Pete Cohen
Pete Cohen

May 27th, 2014 at 12:23 pm

Cincinnati: Where Pigs Fly

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“When you’re on the road for 26.2 miles, your feet aren’t the only thing that race. Your mind taps into something special. It can be weird. It can be beautiful. Kind of like a Pigcasso.”

This was the theme representing this year’s Flying Pig Marathon. On Sunday May 4th, Cincinnati hosted its 16th annual and largest marathon to date. 36,000 runners participated in the events representing all 50 states and 19 countries. The Flying Pig is the third largest marathons for first-time runners in the US, and has also been named the “best-named” marathon and one of the top 10 most fun marathons in the country. With stats like these, MKTG INC Cincy has been proud to be the primary design agency for this event since its beginning.

This year, Jr. Graphic Designer Manfred Westreicher imagined the concept of “Pigcasso” and helped bring it to life on race day. He, with the help of our design team, created the Pigcasso logo seen on every official Flying Pig t-shirt, medal, banner and poster. MKTG INC also developed team shirts for our neighborhood client, Procter & Gamble.

This year’s pig runners were able to experience the artistry of the history of the Flying Pig on their 26.2-mile journey through various chalk art on the street and wall art murals at every mile. As Cincinnati is becoming more cultured in the arts, Pigcasso was a great tie for both the city’s artistic community and its renowned marathon.

As a first-time half marathoner & “flying pig” myself, it was exciting to see our hard work come to life through a runner’s perspective. Every art piece, Pigcasso and MKTG INC sign brought a little smile to my face through my struggles and helped get me to that finish swine! And yes, it is called the finish SWINE.

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MKTG INC Hosts Tanqueray Green Room in Austin

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Photo Credit: Lauren Logan

At Austin, Texas’s Shoal Crossing, Tanqueray recently hosted the last of its very popular Green Room. Despite the unseasonably rainy weather, this last stop was a great success, bringing Tonight We Tanqueray to life for key bartenders and influencers all over Texas.

On Day 1, Global Ambassador Angus Winchester led two impactful sessions on the resurgence of both gin cocktails and Tanqueray No. TEN, arming bartenders with the knowledge they needed to become an authority on this most essential of white spirits. Attendees were also guided through a tasting of eight gins, including vintage Tanqueray London Dry. Bartenders then had the opportunity to get behind the bar and create variations on classic recipes.

The next day, Jennifer Colliau, founder of Small Hands Food, shared her knowledge with a hands-on session about creating (or re-creating) syrups, cordials and tonics for the bar. She taught guests how to showcase their creativity while maintaining profitability.  Attendees took it to the next level, “geeking out” over the in-depth education she provided by asking questions and creating their own syrups.

Business expert Sean Finter closed out the tour with another successful session for bar managers and owners. The full-day session was energetic and interactive from the very beginning, while guests learned about the top areas of business that will help give them the edge they need for success. Feedback included:

The Austin Green Room ended with a consumer event that brought the brand to life for all 150 attendees. Guests enjoyed a variety of cocktails like the bottled Tom Collins and Basil Smash, while listening to music from a local DJ and munching on small bites. All guests were drawn to the History of Advertising Room, where they were able to see the growth of Tanqueray as a brand with campaigns starting as far back as the 1930s.

Key accounts in attendance included Half Step, Farace Beverage, Searsucker, The Standard Pour, Drink Well, El Mercado, Love Goat and Geisha Room, and feedback included:

  • “That was EPIC, and thank you!”
  • “Inspirational, motivating and beyond my expectations.”
  • “Eye-opening, informative, deliberately well done. These are the types of things I think about at night. I just need more!”
  • “Clear, to the point, very influential advice for the better of the industry. Really liked it.”
  • “Refreshing and inspiring. Making change something to strive for to succeed and progress.”

After 18 memorable days in market this year, Tanqueray is excited to continue amplifying and evolving the Green Room next year!

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Captain of the Caribbean

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We interviewed Captain Burak Korel about commandeering the Johnnie Walker voyage through the Caribbean, meeting a Victoria’s Secret model, and spending months on a yacht with our very own Javier. Here’s what he had to say:

How long have you been a Captain / what made you want to do this?
I have been a Captain for 2 years, but I’ve been sailing for 14 years. I am inspired by my father’s stories. He worked on cargo ships as an electrician for 14 years. He was always telling great stories of the places he saw and the fun times he had. I’ve been telling him that I’ve wanted to be a Captain since I was 5 years old.

When you’re not sailing the 7 seas, what do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I have been doing triathlons for 3 years.

When you go to a bar, what are the Captain’s orders (aka What do you order)?
Blue Label (No ice) or Old Fashioned.

Most memorable moment of the trip?
A photo shoot with Victoria’s Secret model Selita Ebanks.

Did you experience any bad waves on your trip?
We had very rough seas from Cartagena to Aruba and from Aruba to Antigua.

On a scale from sissy to pirate, how sea worthy was Javier on the trip?
I don’t know what to say. Javier is a good friend. He wasn’t a sissy at all, but he’s no pirate either. Something in between :)

Did you have a good experience?
It has been great experience for me. I made many good friends on this voyage. I found myself really lucky to meet MKTG’s Javier and the Johnnie Walker Global Brand Ambassador, Tom Jones. I’ve learn a lot from them.

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Written by Christopher Skinner
Christopher Skinner

May 6th, 2014 at 4:24 pm

Learn to Love Your Brand

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Isn’t it odd when you’re thinking about an old friend from your hometown you haven’t connected with in years, and then you see her in the SoHo TOPSHOP out of the blue? Do you find it strange when a word you newly discovered at work appears later that day in a cookbook, the next week on a billboard, and again in conversation over Sunday Brunch?

We’ve all had these occurrences—most experience this phenomenon a few times in their lives, while others encounter them with greater regularity. Is there some hidden cause or meaning behind these events? Would you call it a coincidence, synchronicity, or just a blip in the matrix?

According to the Urban Dictionary, the instance where one happens upon an obscure piece of information—often an unfamiliar word or name—and soon encounters the same subject again is known as the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon. Skeptics may conclude that the frequency of these experiences hasn’t changed, just simply our perception of them has.

One version of this theory explains that when we hear or see a word or name that we just learned, it may feel like more than a coincidence because Baader-Meinhof is amplified by the recency effect; a cognitive bias that inflates the importance of recent stimuli or observations. This increases the chances of being more aware of the subject when we encounter it again. Scientific observation shows us that the Baader-Meinhof theory strikes with a keen accuracy, and happens too frequently to be explained away so easily. The reason for this is our brains’ prejudice towards patterns. Our brains are fantastic pattern recognition engines, a characteristic that is highly useful for learning. The brain promotes the information because two or more instances make up the beginnings of a sequence. What we fail to notice is the hundreds of thousands of pieces of information, which aren’t repeated, because they do not conform to an interesting pattern.

Researching this fascinating data made me think about how these organically occurring phenomenon’s link directly to smart and effective branding. Repetition, consistency and frequency are all critical in supporting a brands design language and strategy, and therefore hold extreme value to the success of a brand. With the direct and subliminal communication of a brand’s design elements (shape, color, typography, iconography) and design principles (contrast, scale, depth, perspective), the brand importance is heightened, and there is an automatic imprint of the brand story in the mind of the consumer.

Further proof of how a brand can sustain importance and connect with consumers over the duration of time visually, can be found by examining a brand’s visual language history. A brands “look” often evolves slowly over time, but the core message of all successful brands never really changes. For example, since the brands conception in 1971, Starbucks has kept up with modern design standards by tweaking their logo over the years. While the brand proposition of offering quality coffee and an intimate customer experience in a comfortable atmosphere never changed, the visual interpretation has. Starbucks Masterbrand logo, (seen above in 1992 & 2011), shows that the wordmark portion of the logo is eventually removed; however the logo is still recognizable as a stand-alone brandmark, and still representing the Starbucks brand. This brand expression, when transformed by a Rodarte inspired design on a coffee thermos (above), proves that even with an obscured and pixilated logo, the brand still resonates. This successful branding evolution has led to continued consumer recognition and ultimately trust and loyalty from the Starbucks consumers.

A brand’s consistent and frequent repetitive story is not just in the eye of the beholder; it can extend to other senses as well. Think about the distinct smell of Auntie Anne’s pretzels as you stroll through a mall, the familiar echo of the Intel’s 5-note ding or that satisfying gulp of an original Coca-Cola. And what about “Touch”? You can almost feel the possibilities of how an established brand could connect with consumers when you consider the brand experience from this multi-faceted perspective. It is interesting to consider these patterns of human behavior, and how leveraging our senses can impact the sustained health of a successful branding campaign.

Because our brains are bombarded with millions of messages every day, we can’t be expected to pay attention to all of them – so we heed the most relevant ones and ignore the rest. With familiarity comes trust and confidence. If executed correctly, a consistent, frequently repetitive brand story brings clarity and purpose that eventually leads to consumer loyalty. Whether perceived or not, you have more of an emotional connection—and the experience, service or product is held to a higher level of importance to you.

And with that, I’m headed to SoHo to buy those gorgeous hot-pink, blinged-out limited edition TOPSHOP jeans, that I, for some reason, just can’t stop thinking about.

Written by: Erin Helmer

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