Part of the Dentsu Aegis Network

#HumansofMKTG: Dave Knight, Racing Champion

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.

Share Button

Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

February 7th, 2018 at 1:20 pm

SB52: That’s a wrap!

 

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

Share Button

Written by Stephanie Rudnick
Stephanie Rudnick

February 5th, 2018 at 3:13 pm

LeBron James Changed My Life – by Elliot Gerard

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

 

 

 

 

Share Button

Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

February 5th, 2018 at 11:16 am

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

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.

Share Button

Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

January 17th, 2018 at 10:03 am

AT&T’s Silent Disco

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:

 

Share Button

Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

January 8th, 2018 at 3:21 pm

Posted in Experience

Tagged with , , , , , ,

with one comment – Latest by: AT&T’s Silent Disco - Pro Event Network - Blog
[…] By Paige McConney […]

NHL Centennial Fan Arena

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.

Share Button

Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

January 2nd, 2018 at 3:29 pm

MKTG NY Volunteers at Gods Love We Deliver

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!

Share Button

Written by Paige McConney
Paige McConney

December 15th, 2017 at 11:04 am

2017 TopSpin Charity Event

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

Share Button

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!

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!

Share Button

Written by Stephanie Rudnick
Stephanie Rudnick

December 4th, 2017 at 3:46 pm

A Day In The Life of…Guinness Ambassador Ryan Wagner

It’s that time again! Time to get to know another one of our amazing #HumansofMKTG.  To finish off the year, we’re taking a look at a day in the life of Ryan Wagner, our Baltimore-based Guinness Brewery Ambassador.

What exactly does it mean to be a Guinness Brewery Ambassador?

Well, there’s a team of nine of us around the country, we divide up the country evenly. My territory is Maryland, DC, Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee. It’s our job to kind of spread the gospel of Guinness in any way that we can. So it’s mainly focused on education, and whether that’s getting in front of the sales team at a distributer, or getting in front of the bartending staff at an on-premise account and making sure that they’re up to date on Guinness’s quality standards and pouring techniques and all those things. Then it’s also designing consumer-facing events. I’m working with the Maryland Zoo for instance, in creating a program surrounding live zoo animals and the animals that are on the Gilroy posters from Guinness. So I do whatever I can to increase awareness of the things that we’re doing and making sure that everyone is as educated as possible about the world of beer. Not just the world of Guinness, because if people are smarter drinkers, then we hope that’ll lead them to Guinness anyway. And then also because I’m based in Baltimore and our new brewery is being built here, I’ve been spending a lot of time helping everybody get up to speed at the brewery and in the taproom as well.

The cat that’s “probably screaming”

Would you tell us a little bit about your morning routine?

Because I work primarily with staff at bars and restaurants and things like that, I tend to use my mornings to get caught up on admin work, whether that’s responding to emails or dealing with expenses. So I usually take my time in the mornings because, more often than not, I know it’s going to be a later evening. I’ll spend the earlier part of the day working on the busy work.

 

What about first thing when you wake up in the morning? The before work stuff…

Oh my goodness. I hit the snooze button like 17 times. I deal with the cat that’s probably screaming at me. If it’s the day my fiancé doesn’t open the gym where she works, then I’ll get up and make breakfast for us. If she’s already gone and it’s just me then breakfast is something really simple like cereal. Then I sit down and turn the TV to CNN or ESPN and get caught up on what’s going on in the world. Finally, I open the computer and get to work.

 

Are you a big podcast listener?

Occasionally I’ll listen to a couple of the beer podcasts. Some of the stuff that the guys at Beervana do or Good Beer Hunting to, again, keep up with what’s going on in the market.

 

Do you have any go-to lunch spots?

Yeah, Smoothie King! When you work in beer, and you know you’re going to be drinking a lot of it, you know a lot of your calories for the day are going to be coming from beer. So you have to try to keep it light for lunch. It’s not always easy, but if there’s a Smoothie King around I try to have that for lunch.

 

What about an after work activity? Do you have a favorite?

Spending time with my fiancé. We both work a lot. Depending on the time of year I work three or four jobs and she’s busy as well. She’s a group fitness director for a regional chain of athletic clubs so my favorite activity is literally something as simple as an SVU marathon and laying on the couch and just being around each other.

So you said you’re typically working 3-4 jobs at a time, can you tell us a little more about what those are?

Yeah it’s quite a few things! My background is really varied. Obviously, Guinness is my fulltime job and where I spend the majority of my time. In addition to the experience I have working with beer, I have a couple other part-time gigs that are a lot of fun that I like to do whenever I have the opportunity to. One of them is teaching a class called Body Pump, which is a group fitness weight-training class. So I’ll typically do that once or twice a week it’s usually early in the morning where I’ll go to the gym and teach a class. And then I also work for the local CBS radio affiliate in Baltimore doing sports talk radio. So I’ll do that a few times a month, where I’ll pick up a few hours and go in and talk sports. Then I also work for the Orioles when they’re in season. I am the announcer at the ballpark at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, so I’m the public address announcer at the stadium.

 

So let’s say the Orioles are in season, what does your workweek look like?

I mean it depends. So they’re home 81 times a year typically for anywhere from 3-10 days in a row at a time so it really just varies from week to week. But if I’m working all of my jobs simultaneously, which doesn’t happen terribly often, I might wake up at 5am to go teach a 6am class. I’d get back to the house at 7:30, have breakfast, and work on some admin stuff until it’s time to go on the road and go do my Guinness day. I’d visit a couple of accounts, do a staff training, work with bartenders on Perfect Pour, meet with a distributor. I’d meet with my distributor manager, see what’s going on for the week with him. Then I would be at the ballpark by 5 or 5:30. The game would start at 7. I’m there until 10. Then there are days where I go right from the ballpark to the radio station to do 10:30 until midnight on the radio. Again, it doesn’t happen often but if I’m doing all four in one day that’s what it’d look like.

It was a pleasure speaking with Ryan about life as a Guinness Brewery Ambassador, sports announcer, group-fitness instructor, and radio host.  You can keep up with Ryan on Instagram and Twitter @rwags614 or just catch him at the Orioles home games next season.  

Now that we’re wrapping-up 2017 A Day In The Life pieces, I highly recommend closing your year by sitting down with a colleague you don’t know so well and getting to know them better. It’s a privilege to hear the stories of the people we surround ourselves with every day. One thing’s for sure, MKTG is full of some pretty amazing humans. – MaryKate

 

 

 

Share Button

Written by Mary Kate Pleggenkuhle
Mary Kate Pleggenkuhle

November 30th, 2017 at 2:28 pm