Archive for the ‘Experience’ Category

#HumansofMKTG: Dave Knight, Racing Champion

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If you had told me I’d be a National Champion in car racing one day…I never would have believed it.

It all started in September 2015. A good friend was one of the lead instructors for the BMW Peachtree Chapter and after some convincing, I took my BMW X5 on Road Atlanta for a High Performance Driving Event (HPDE) weekend. After this, I was hooked.

Knowing I wanted to continue this new addiction, I knew I had to buy a more suitable car for the track…a BMW 330ci. Over the next 1 ½ years I slowly rebuilt the car from a street car to a race car while also participating in as many HPDE weekends as I could to get more experience.  I even sold my Harley to fund the race car transformation!

In December of 2016 I completed BMW Club Race School which qualified me for a club racing rookie license. In June 2017, I drove in my first race weekend. I won 4 out of 4 races that weekend and was on my way. I competed in 3 more race weekends in 2017 and as a Rookie, earned enough points to win the 2017 BMW CCA Club Racing National Championship in the Spece46 racing class.

It’s been a heck of a ride so far and I’m looking forward to what’s next.

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

February 7th, 2018 at 1:20 pm

SB52: That’s a wrap!

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Our Superb Owl Party was inadvertently mentioned on NBC’s Today Show. Click above to see this fortunate coincidence!

Despite the frigid temperatures in Minneapolis (at some points over the weekend, the wind chill was -40F and the wind was fierce), MKTG had a tremendous presence across the Twin Cities and brought the HEAT…so to speak. The team of over 60 MKTGers scattered all over town – from The NFL Experience to the Mall of America and everywhere in between, to execute dozens of experiences for clients including numerous Diageo brands, FedEx, NIKE, NFL Extra Points, LEVIs, DIRECTV, Old Spice, Barclaycard US, Schwans, Secret, MARS (Skittles and Snickers), Head & Shoulders, Tide and Febreze, engaging hundreds of thousands of consumers.

Also, each year at the Super Bowl, MKTG hosts a private VIP party called “Superb Owl” that was founded six years ago when a British MKTGer, Matt Manning, and his buddies from the UK thought of the name. After reuniting at the Super Bowl many years prior, they decided it was high time to host an event for all of the American and British sports business execs in attendance…and the Superb Owl was born. This year, MKTG took it up a notch and partnered with DAN sister agency, Athletes First, and hosted no less than 15 current and former NFL players and coaches as well as over 150 of some of the top sports biz execs in town for The Big Game. The event even received an accidental, but greatly welcomed plug on NBC’s TODAY SHOW. Check it out here! Superb Owl on The Today Show

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Written by Stephanie Rudnick
Stephanie Rudnick

February 5th, 2018 at 3:13 pm

LeBron James Changed My Life – by Elliot Gerard

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LeBron James changed my life.

Every year during the NBA playoffs, he takes a break from social media to 100% focus on the game with the aim of taking home another championship. His social media blackout has been officially coined “Zero Dark 30” and rather than tweet, he posts an image with the hashtag #StriveForGreatness.

Well…much to my total surprise, during the 2017 playoffs, he chose my work to grace his page the entire playoffs.

MKTG’s Elliot Gerard and John “Graph” Boyce’s piece chosen by LeBron during the 2017 NBA Finals

Right then and there, I knew that my life was about to change and I had to seize the moment and truly Strive or Greatness. And just like LeBron does, I would give every ounce of myself to make sure I could do so.

I was already somewhat established as an artist in the sports industry working with teams like the Knicks and media brands like ESPN. I knew I could do more though.

This was an opportunity to take the ball and run with it.

I reached out to organizations like Sports Illustrated, Turner Sports and most importantly The Cleveland Cavaliers and to see if they could be a part of this journey. There were many people that told me they were not interested or did not respond. But every time I would look at LeBron’s post, it fueled me to continue to strive for greatness.

The Cavaliers were the first to get back to me. After talking with their lead art director, Kevin Johnson on the phone, we were already coming up with the idea of creating a mural that helped recapture the energy of my image that LeBron had chosen.

I had created the original image in collaboration with a talented artist John “Graph” Boyce, so I made sure that he was a part of any project centered around the Zero Dark 30. Keeping the authenticity of the original piece in all artwork we created together for this campaign was key.

While each playoff round went by, the more nervous I got. However, as the Cavaliers looked more and more likely to reach their straight third trip to the Finals, and LeBron’s historic 7th straight trip, things started to come into place. With no budget for a PR team, I spent many late nights reaching out and finding ways to get interviews with podcasts, publications and blogs. Then slowly, we started booking projects for media outlets like FanSided and Bleacher Report, creating artwork celebrating LeBron’s historic run to the finals.

The major turning point came when the Cavaliers called me after winning Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals with the final approval on the project. We were asked to create a mural coined “Defend the Land” of the entire Cavaliers team interacting with the cityscape and literally defending the city of Cleveland. This larger-than-life piece would be displayed outside of The Q Arena (and in front of the entrance to the Cavaliers’ Fan Fast) for games 3 and 4 of the NBA Finals.

I honestly couldn’t have dreamt of a bigger honor. And while it was hard for me to believe this string of events was real, it was time to get to work. Graph and I spent multiple all-nighters getting all the artwork ready, and wouldn’t rest until every piece had achieved greatness.

The mural at The Q (Quicken Loans Arena) — Home of the Cavs

Next up, it was wheels up to Cleveland for the mural unveiling. Besides personally needing to be there to see this moment in person, the Cavs organization made it even more special having me interviewed by local news outlets and making a big deal out of the piece. The most enjoyment I got, however, was watching the fans take pictures in front of the artwork get excited and inspired before the game.

Getting to “The Land” was a once-in-a-lifetime adventure… I was far from done though.

“Strive For Greatness” was now my philosophy. For so many years I was okay being unsatisfied with my day job and putting all my energy into my personal side sports art business. No more – I wanted to be a part of a winning culture, merge my passions with my career and be a leader in my industry.

MKTG was an agency I had freelanced for and they had always impressed me not only with their top-notch clients, but also with the excellent culture they displayed. I knew if the opportunity arose, MKTG was the company I could continue this journey with.

Before LeBron James chose my artwork, I would not have even thought to reach out and engage them to discuss joining the team. But I had the confidence I had always been seeking and know that my passion could add another dimension to the already great team I had worked with. A few months later, as I sit at my desk at MKTG as VP/Creative Director, I realize that the moment I learned that my work was chosen by someone I’ve always admired, that it was time to take a leap and change my life.

Thank you LeBron James. You opened my eyes and lit a fire within me. I will always continue to heed your words. The striving never ends and greatness always awaits.

Here’s to another Championship run!

–contributed by: Elliot Gerard, MKTG Westport

 

 

 

 

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

February 5th, 2018 at 11:16 am

MKTG West Coast forms strategic CSR partnership with local non-profit

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In 2017, MKTG West decided to up-level their corporate social responsibility (CSR) efforts from ad-hoc volunteer projects to a streamlined strategic partnership. A committee came up with a litmus test for identifying potential non-profit partners to work with and focus on, with over 40 organizations making the cut. The team then selected 10 non-profits to interview based on shared company values, and the office community voted on 1 of 3 finalists.

We are happy to report that the selected partner was the Bayview Hunters Point Youth Center for Arts and Technology (BAYCAT).

BAYCAT provides access, education, and employment for low-income youth and young adults and women of color, tackling the lack of diversity in technology and digital media.

The Bayview Hunter’s point neighborhood of San Francisco is a historically marginalized and economically disadvantaged community.  During the past 10 years, BAYCAT has managed to recruit and educate over 4,000 students; their recent graduates have gone on to work at Netflix, Lucasfilm, Pixar, HBO, Universal Studios and other production and tech companies.

In 2017 MKTG West donated strategic planning, account management, and production hours to help BAYCAT with the many events they host, building awareness of their org and mission and promoting the great work their students are producing. One such event was their Zoom in 38 Winter Showcase on December 7th, 2017 at the Baywview Opera House in San Francisco.

MKTG Staff assisted with everything from pre-event logistics and planning, registration, stage management, and survey collection. It was a night of innovative and truthful media and musical performance, and gave the community a chance to hear firsthand from their youth about displacement in San Francisco, technology’s impact on social activism, and building intersectional communities.

In 2018 the MKTG West team plans to continue this strategic partnership with continued support of BAYCAT’s event planning, participating with their student academy via mentoring and guest lecturing, hiring BAYCAT studio for client projects, and filling a seat on their board of directors. Click here to watch BAYCAT founder Villy Wang’s Ted@IBM talk, where she explains how and why she developed the BAYCAT social enterprise model.

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

January 17th, 2018 at 10:03 am

AT&T’s Silent Disco

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Welcome to the AT&T’s Silent Disco at PLAYOFF PLAYLIST LIVE!

AT&T presented a warm place for fans to come inside and catch their favorite game on DirectTV Live, Jam out to the LIVE DJ in the Silent Disco, take a picture with the larger than life Samsung Headphone Wall, catch a live stage feed of the concert all while charging their devices and lounging around.

Check out the video below:

 

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

January 8th, 2018 at 3:21 pm

NHL Centennial Fan Arena

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The MKTG team was busy over the holiday break staging the NHL Centennial Fan Arena in NYC! NHL fans had a chance to enjoy watching youth hockey players participating in clinics on a custom pop-up ice rink, see the Stanley Cup up close and personal and tour the main attraction which was a 53-foot museum truck with a 1,000 sq ft interior showcasing digital displays, interactive videos, memorabilia and unique photo moments. The Fan arena was exactly what New York needed to get ready for an incredible Winter Classic!

Read more about the experience here.

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

January 2nd, 2018 at 3:29 pm

MKTG NY Volunteers at Gods Love We Deliver

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Yesterday members of MKTG NY spent the afternoon volunteering at Gods Love We Deliver packaging food for those in need. The mission of GLWD is to help alleviate hunger and malnutrition by delivering over 7,000 nutritious meals daily to those who are suffering from serious illness. We are thrilled to support such a great cause and look forward to continuing to do so in 2018!

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

December 15th, 2017 at 11:04 am

2017 TopSpin Charity Event

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For the eighth year in a row, MKTG was proud to produce another successful TopSpin Charity ping pong event last night at NY’s Metropolitan Pavilion. TopSpin raises awareness and provides funds for exceptional nonprofits that provide educational opportunities for under-served youth.

This was by far our most attended event with attendees spanning across brands, properties, media, leagues and agents. This year, 13 of some of NYC’s top restaurants provided amazing samples from their menus. Similar to recent years, bars were fully stocked with themed cocktails and this year’s silent auction brought some amazing sports memorabilia, including Shaq’s size 23 sneaker. Take a look below for photos from last night’s event!

Photos by Mitch Plaise @sh0tbyp

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Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

December 7th, 2017 at 12:42 pm

Our CEO Charlie Horsey’s World-Renowned Chicken Chili Recipe…just in time for the holidays!

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Charlie_CC_Recipe

 

INGREDIENTS

• 6 (1 lb) Cans of Navy or Great White Northern Beans

• 3 Cans (6 cups) of chicken broth

• 2 Chicken bouillon cubes

• 1-2 cloves of garlic

• 1 large White Onion Chopped fine

• 2 (4oz) cans of chopped green chilies

• 1 can Rotel diced tomatoes/chilies

• 1 tbsp ground cumin

• 1 tbsp dried oregano

• 1/4 tbsp ground cloves

• 1/4 tbsp cayenne pepper

• 4 Cups of shredded cooked chicken (hint: get a cooked

rotisserie chicken and shred it!)

METHOD

Combine above ingredients in crock pot and simmer all day or use stove top

method below….

Stove Top Method

• Combine beans, chicken broth, garlic and onions in a large soup pot and

bring to a boil

• Reduce heat and simmer for 2-3 hours

• Add remaining ingredients and simmer for one hour longer

GARNISH

Top as you choose, but I suggest you garnish with monterey jack / cheddar

cheese, sour cream, jalapeno peppers (Mrs. Renfros are the best), and, of

course, Fritos when you are trying to impress!

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Written by Stephanie Rudnick
Stephanie Rudnick

December 4th, 2017 at 3:46 pm

Posted in Experience

MKTG Wins “Best Use of a Digital Influencer in a Social Campaign” at Cynopsis Digital Model D Awards

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MKTG was rewarded for their continued work around client, IBM’s, Tony Awards Influencer Watch Party (#WatchPartyIBM) at the Cynopsis Digital Model D Awards. The category contained quite a few reputable programs making the victory extra sweet. For more background see details of the award-winning program below:

Category Finalists Included:

• Turner Sports – #ArtOfTheDunk

• MTV EMA – Viacom International Media Networks

• Viacom – 2017 Kids’ Choice Awards – Social Squad

• Nickelodeon – Kids’ Choice Sports Social Campaign

• Oxygen Media – Snapped – Influencer “Evidence Unboxing” Campaign

 

Objectives

In 2014, through the utilization of proprietary social listening tools, MKTG identified a lack of social conversation and attribution surrounding IBM’s partnership with the Tony Awards. Aditionally, MKTG noticed a strong desire amongst theatre aficionados to share their Tony Awards viewing experience, but what was lacking was a physical and digital community where they could all come together under one umbrella. From this insight, #WatchPartyIBM was born in 2015 to drive home the association of the partnership and bring attention to IBM Watson solutions.

Strategy

In 2017, MKTG revamped the 3rd annual Official Tony Awards Watch Party in a NYC penthouse by inviting 35 unpaid influential voices in the theater, tech, and sports communities to come together to amplify the IBM partnership and share their experience on Broadway’s biggest night.

Tactics

New to 2017, MKTG developed a 10-person Host Committee which included current Broadway actors and actresses (featured in acts like Hamilton and others) as well as past Tony winners. This Committee was devised to spark conversation amongst attendees while initiating the #WatchPartyIBM social community to extend the conversation beyond the 3-hour award show. The week of the Watch Party, influencers received a personalized social asset from IBM on Twitter as well as an informative email to set the stage for the event, introducing them to Watson Cognitive technology. Post event, Getty Images were sent to the influencers, encouraging additional social sharing after the award show.

Execution

On Tony night, MKTG hosted the Watch Party at the Skylark in New York City.  Onsite were unique activations to enhance the experience and encourage social content sharing including: an interactive IBM branded selfie mirror, custom Snapchat Spectacles (with 2 geo-targeted Snapchat filters), a photo opportunity with an actual Tony Award, an officially sponsored Periscope channel, an opportunity to contribute to a crowdsourced video, and interactive Tony themed games and contests awarding signed Broadway memorabilia. Not to mention, Chef Watson tech-inspired chocolates and signature cocktails, and the infamous Watson Beat activation where guests could create an original Broadway composition on a keyboard piano. Following the live broadcast, guests were transported to the Tony Awards Gala at the Plaza Hotel to rub shoulders with the stars.

Evaluation of Success

Across all social platforms, there were over 2,100 unique IBM and Tony Awards conversations (38% growth from 2016) including 1,600+ unique event hashtag uses totaling 34MM potential impressions.

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Written by Mary Kate Pleggenkuhle
Mary Kate Pleggenkuhle

November 29th, 2017 at 3:14 pm

Posted in Experience