We do all of the things one would expect of an advertising and marketing agency. We design logos. We can facilitate printing your business cards. We can build you a dynamic and inviting new website. Need an ad for print or something to send to the local TV station? Done and done.
One thing we’ve proved adept at is merging all of those traditional things with a larger conversation. Many of our clients have a social media presence and are aware of the concept of “blogging.” We give them the tools to get things rolling, and hold their hands for the first few months. More often than not, at the end of that trial period, we’re asked to simply represent them. When Richmond icons GWAR needed help promoting their annual GWAR B-Q, we tweeted, posted, responded, and commented with their millions of online fans. With plenty of info and prompts from the Lords and Masters of the Slave Pit, I even got to write profiles of some of their fans – in the voice of a demi-god from outer space with no patience for the miserable humans of Earth.
Sometimes my job is cool like that.
But sometimes we’re asked to think outside of the proverbial box and come up with something different. When RichTech began their annual rvatech/jam, a showcase of Richmond’s rising technology companies, we did all of the branding and marketing materials for the event. We designed graphics for a tremendous LED screen, and ran sound for the Battle of the Geek Bands. Scott Dickens and I even enlisted our band Strummer to be the opening act to break the ice.
Anything for a client.
One of our newer clients is Rockin’ Baby. They began in California, and moved to Richmond when they were purchased by RVA native Kathryn Wiley. They make baby carriers and slings, and in 2015 added a full line of childrenswear. The coolest thing about Rockin’ Baby (aside from their energetic CEO), is their mission – You Buy. We Give. Wiley started out donating slings to mothers in earthquake-stricken Haiti. As she’s expanded the brand, she’s expanded her mission globally. They recently returned from delivering over 27,000 items to kids and moms in Africa. For every single item Rockin’ Baby sells, they donate one to a family or child in need somewhere in the world – Mother-to-Mother, Child-to-Child.
We’ve been helping Kathryn with some branding, making her website more user friendly, curating catalog images, social strategy and content, and more.
So, one day, Kathryn calls. “I’ve just done the craziest thing. I bought a used school bus.”
You what? For what? What are you thinking?
“I’m going to convert it into an RV and take my family across country, and I want it to be a Rockin’ Baby Giving Tour.”
Well, okay then.
Over the course of about three weeks, Kathryn worked on her skoolie, while we began creating a campaign and itinerary for her trip. She would hit major metro markets like Denver and Portland, but wanted to be open when an opportunity arose. We were her advance team.
And we would get to design a wrap for an entire freaking school bus.
Did we mention she was taking her husband and six kids with her?
When Kathryn took the Rockin’ Baby skoolie out on the road, we arranged for her to stop at women’s shelters, homes for abused children, and the like. At each stop, she and her family would meet these families in need, offer some compassion, and hand out free Rockin’ Baby merchandise to help ease some of the suffering. On the way back, we arranged a trip through West Virginia, where she was able to donate some much-needed clothing to families who had lost everything in devastating floods.
Rockin’ Baby managed to generate an enormous amount of good will and no small amount of press during this tour. Her story was picked up in a number of regional papers, and she had a great interview on CNN’s Headline News! All of this culminated with a request for an article for the Huffington Post on children and giving. That should be coming out soon. We’ll update this when it hits the interwebs.
We’re a creative shop. It’s fun to get really creative. That’s what we live for.