Strategic branding and attendee experience
With the launch of its new thought-leader initiative, Solve, MIT is setting out to do nothing less than tackle the world’s most urgent problems, as defined against the stark reality of global population growth reaching nearly 10 billion people by the year 2050.
Inaugurated with a three-day summit on MIT’s campus in October 2015, Solve will combine an annual live event, international satellite experiences and a digital platform: these will cultivate a community of business leaders, scientists, engineers, policymakers and MIT faculty focused on achieving actionable solutions to problems in global health, education, infrastructure and energy.
Devise a brand for Solve that wins VIP audiences by capturing and promoting the uniquely MIT problem-solving methodology that only Solve can own.
Problem-solving at MIT — an institution identified with the origins of everything from radar to the Internet — is an ongoing process in which each new insight leads to further inquiry and action. We created a kinetic, deliberately “incomplete” logo for Solve that evokes this process through crisp, yet disrupted type. Our design puts Solve firmly in line with MIT’s distinguished graphic design heritage, specifically the iconic work of MIT Media Lab’s Muriel Cooper.
The identity gave rise to a linear graphic system for the Solve event experience which was then applied to promotional materials including street banners and outdoor exhibits, as well as stage design for Kresge Auditorium and the interior design of a 15,000 sq. ft. temporary pavilion installed on campus for the inaugural event.
The first Solve exceeded its revenue targets and brought luminaries including Laurene Powell Jobs, Eric Schmidt and UN economist Jeffrey Sachs together to make tangible progress against its four program pillars: Learn, Cure, Fuel and Make. Solve 2.0 has already been scheduled for September 2016.
Wow Microsoft’s most important partners and customers with interactive signage and experiences that befit the brand’s VIP meeting center and technology showcase, the Microsoft Executive Briefing Center in Redmond, WA.
We took advantage of the EBC’s recent remodel to weave a variety of digital experiences throughout the Center, including a playful and dramatic Welcome moment, a CMS-driven real-time way finding solution, and an extensive touchscreen signage program delivering shareable, multimedia Microsoft enterprise content.
In the EBC lobby, we designed, animated, developed and audio-scored a custom Kinect experience that invites visitors to interact with elegant abstract imagery on a stunning 20x60’ veneer-paneled LED wall. Within the EBC, our interactive map delivers real-time briefing information to each guest. As visitors explore further, a configuration of touchscreens also uses Kinect to trigger videos and other content focusing on Microsoft enterprise themes.
Happy clients, an award-winning facility, and metrics reflecting an ongoing increase in visitor engagement with Microsoft EBC content.
Design manager for Microsoft's tier one events, including Convergence, TechReady, and Microsoft's global sales event, MGX. Work includes oversight of event style guides, event typography treatments, signage, motion graphics packages and show opening motion sequences.
The Art and Technique of Software Development
This intimate event for mobile platform Heroku brought developers and Japanese artisans together in a refined celebration of the Waza, or “art and technique,” of software development.
We transformed a raw, historic San Francisco venue into an inspiring Japanese-influenced environment where our tech audience was immersed in the living traditions of Japanese culture. The event kicked off with an opening ceremony featuring a traditional large-format Japanese calligraphy performance accompanied by Taiko drumming. Décor was inspired by the tactile qualities of fine paper. Pour-over gourmet coffee, trendy local food trucks, and craft beer tastings kept attendees well-fed and watered.
Execute a complete revamp of the Shopping Showcase — a scripted, host-driven experience of real-world vignettes enhanced by eBay technology — into a radically versatile space for collaboration, meetings, and events, filled with high-tech tools and relevant digital content.
Customization is key. Because eBay needed a multi-functional space that could host everything from daytime workshops to high-profile events, we recommended an agile interior filled with modular furnishings, moveable walls, and customizable digital canvases. The jewel in the crown: a massive, interactive Digital Wall that greets visitors with branded, browsable content as they enter.
The NYC Studio, a light-filled corner space in the heart of New York’s Chelsea neighborhood, can host collaborative working sessions by day, and transform into a sleek event space at night. Dark wood finishes and clean-lined furniture speak to eBay’s modern coolness, and touchscreens equipped with wireless mirroring capabilities position eBay as a forward-thinking technology company. Walls, monitors, and furnishings are mobile and modular, making it easy to host any event, from a town hall meeting for 100, an exclusive press lunch for 35, or an intimate ideation and strategy session for 10. The Digital Wall, a 9’x15’ array of touchscreens, showcases eBay’s latest social, news, and product content, populated dynamically, plus tips, tricks, and company Fast Facts. Subtle motion invites deeper dives into the Wall’s 50+ interactive tiles.
"I was VERY pleased to see…the space! It is amazing. …The digital wall is awesome, and right in line with our thinking. … Can't wait to get using it; it will be so good for eBay, and the brand.“
— RJ Pittman, Chief Product Officer, eBay
Microsoft Employee Giving event, 30 Years of Giving, celebrating over one billion dollars of employee contributions
Win new audiences for Bill Gates’ official blog, by making its often complex topics immediate and relevant to millennials and others who care about global health, development and environmental issues.
Use interactive storytelling and video to underscore the urgency behind Bill’s key priorities by highlighting their inherent human interest and rewarding the intellectual curiosity of our audience.
Our work for The Gates Notes has included infographic-rich features on The Future of Food and humans’ impact on earth’s biosphere, enhancing Bill’s own writing on these topics in the form of book reviews.
We’ve created videos on topics showcasing the effectiveness of Big History and the urgent need for clean energy innovation, and supported Bill’s very first Reddit AMA with original content and a meme while amplifying his efforts on The Gates notes homepage.
And most recently we helped architect a first-of-its-kind Gates Notes quiz that challenged people to test their knowledge of global issues against Bill’s own.
While The Gates Notes keeps its metrics confidential, our content’s success has led us working with Bill’s team on a significant evolution of the structure of the site itself.
Shaping the Women and Girls Conversation
CARE.org asked us to make its website as urgent and essential as its work. Our assignment: “make CARE cool”—and win the next giving generation for a non-profit lifting communities out of poverty by empowering women and girls.
The new CARE.org’s vibrant, content-centric design connects people with humanitarian issues of the greatest urgency, driving donation and engagement through vivid storytelling. The responsive site translates across devices. Its CMS platform makes emergency and other site updates quick and efficient.
The relaunch increased CARE’s critical end-of-year fundraising income by a double-digit percentage in the 2013 holiday season.
Reinventing a Regional Identity
Lake Chelan—A Washington Original
Nestled in the North Cascades is one of the Pacific Northwest’s — and North America’s — most distinctive natural resources: Lake Chelan. This narrow, 55-mile long stretch of pristine water is surrounded by mountain shores that are home to orchards, vineyards, jaw-dropping scenic viewpoints, and four seasons’ worth of outdoor activities.
We conducted market research and created a regional brand for this magical environment, which is home to three distinct communities and a proud local culture. Our visual identity uses bold circular strokes to evoke a dive into the lake, supporting a message framework capturing the cyclical rewards of returning to this place, season to season and year after year.