iStrategyBlabs

Kroger Taps iStrategyLabs as Social Media Agency of Record

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kroger.logoOver the past few years, iStrategyLabs has steadily grown and honed its service offering to include a diligent focus on the intersection of online and off. When Kroger - America’s largest grocer and second largest general retailer with 2,640+ stores – began a process last year to find a new Social Media Agency of Record, they found what they were looking for in us.

After a competitive review, we’re proud to announce that iStrategyLabs is Kroger’s new Social Media AOR and is now responsible for all social media activities for Kroger and 10 other banner brands across the US - King Soopers, City Market, Dillons, Gerbes, Fry’s, Ralphs, Smith’s, Food4Less, Foods Co., and QFC.

We couldn’t be more excited to be working with iStrategyLabs. Their creativity, inventiveness and best-in-class social media marketing capabilities make them the perfect partner for Kroger.

- Anne Maness, Sr. Marketing Manager, Kroger

This assignment presents a big opportunity for iStrategyLabs and Kroger. If we do our best work together – we’ll be able to enhance the customer experience for millions of people, in thousands of stores everyday.

- Peter Corbett, CEO, iStrategyLabs

New work for Kroger is rolling out as we speak. Check out the following:

Taste of Mexico Campaign Content:

Taste of Mexico Guac Surf Tweet

Taste of Mexico Timeline Image

Announcing Taste of Mexico on Facebook

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Investigating Browersify: The Development Tool That Lets You Write Modular Code For Use In Browser

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A while back, the engineering team adopted AngularJS as the front end JavaScript framework of choice. Not every project we work on requires a framework like Angular, but when we need one — it’s where we go. This post, however isn’t about Angular itself — or why we chose it — it’s about how we manage the multitude of files associated with using such a framework. Every FED (front end developer) knows that simply using a separate script tag to include all files does not scale very well. Most take to simple concatenation, allowing them to use one js file for their app code. This also works, but can get out of hand and also forces you to either pollute the window namespace or create your own namespace in order to access various components outside of their respective files.

Our development team decided that a more modular approach was appropriate to solving this problem, so we turned to Browserify. Browserify brings node.js style require statements to the browser. We can write code that looks like this:

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// mainCtrl.js
(function(angular){

   module.exports = [‘$scope’, function($scope){
      $scope.theThings = [ ‘thing1’, ‘thing2’, ‘thing3’ ];
   }];

}(window.angular));

// fooCtrl.js
(function(angular){

   module.exports = [‘$scope’, function($scope){
      $scope.foo = ‘bar’;
   }];

}(window.angular));

// controllers.js
(function(angular){

   var controllers = {
      MainCtrl: require( ‘./mainCtrl’),
      FooCtrl: require(‘./fooCtrl’)
   };

   // a utility module to dynamically attach modules
   require( './moduleUtils' )
    .forModule( myApp.controllers' )
    .setType( 'controller' )
    .injectAll( controllers );
}(window.angular));

// finally in app.js
(function(angular){

   angular.module(‘myApp’, [
      ‘myApp.controllers’,
      ‘myApp.services’,
      // …. and so on
   ]);

}(window.angular));

Using a build system, we point Browserify to app.js and that’s it! Another benefit to using browserify is that many node modules are automatically compatible and can be used in the browser. At the end of the day, Browserify is the best tool for allowing us to handle code in different files and keeping it all modular.

AM/PM, Recap of Our First Digital PM Event

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Last week our Strategy team hosted AM/PM, our first ever coffee chat for digital Project Managers to discuss tools, tips, and challenges facing our community. We had a great turnout, with about thirty attendees from top DC agencies such as Viget, AKQA, and RepEquity. It was amazing to be around so many talented individuals, and hear their insights on project management tools, team structure, and project scope.

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With all of the meet-ups for designers and developers, it’s a rare treat for digital PM’s to have their own space to exchange ideas and foster relationships. We’re hoping that AM/PM can serve that purpose!

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Thanks to everyone that participated! With all the positive feedback we’ve received, we’re looking at hosting our second AM/PM chat later this summer. Stay tuned and join the conversation on the AM/PM twitter account!

 

 

iStrategyLabs Plus Ben & Jerry’s Equals Love At First Bite

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I scream, you scream, iStrategyLabs 3D prints a teeny tiny Ben & Jerry’s truck for free ice cream!

We’ve had our eyes on the Ben & Jerry’s Core Tour since we caught word that it was rolling through DC this month. We took the whole “core tour” thing as a personal sign from Ben & Jerry’s that we should invite them to our office, seeing that we’ve referred to the iStrategyLabs staff as the “Core Team” since its inception. We’re a pretty passionate group here in general. Our passion for ice cream is matched only by our passion for design, development, strategy, and creating exceedingly awesome stuff for great brands.

So, what are we going to to do to stand out amongst the hundreds of Twitter invitations begging you to come to this, that, or the other office for a taste of these fine flavors? A stop-motion video starring a 3D-printed miniature Ben & Jerry’s truck, of course:

3dprint

Demetri and Ryan begin the stop motion process.

Between this and our 2013 Ice Cream Social Infographic, I think you could safely refer to the iStrategyLabs Core Team as ice cream enthusiasts. We love visitors as much as we love ice cream (see The One Where Uber Delivered a Christmas Tree), so we cordially invite you to follow in the tiny truck’s tracks, and roll on up to Dupont Circle office (1630 Connecticut Ave. NW)  while we’re still here. We promise we’ll show you a fun time, and if you’re lucky there will even be 1-3 dogs in tow.

P.S. If your life’s priorities are inline with ours, apply to join the Core Team here.

[UPDATE] Well, that was fast (24 minutes to be exact):
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#IntroFriday Will Change Your Life, And Someone Else’s Too

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Perhaps it’s because I can toss a business card across the table with the accuracy of Peyton Manning that I often get asked to speak about the idea of “networking” or how to become a “super-connector.”  That said, the word “networking” often connotes the transactional, disingenuous side of relationship building. At the end of the day, one of the best ways to build & strengthen relationships is to provide selfless value to others. Here’s what you’re doing wrong and what you should be doing instead:

You are Doing it Wrong:  im-late-for-business-roller-blades The business card collecting, name-dropping, sales-driven types might be good at filling out a rolodex, but they’re too quick to ask for value (or simply to try and sell you something) instead of seeking to provide value (an idea, a connection, an opportunity, etc.). Too often are they demanding value in an email exchange (like calendar spamming), rather than simply creating it.

The Right Way: Many have written up great advice on this front, from the likes of Steve Blank on “How To Get Meetings With People Too Busy To See You” , and some even offer actionable recommendations and exercises such as James Altucher — who has a simple list of skills required to become a superconnector. The main message is to  provide real value to build real relationships. Here’s a dead simple way to get started: introduce two people you know to each other via email (two people who you know would both enjoy or find value in connecting with one another). Instead of #FollowFriday, let’s call this approach #IntroFriday.  Here’s an example:

Dan<>Kate

If you’re 100% confident that both parties will indeed be interested in meeting the other, then go ahead and let it rip. If you’re not, send them  individual notes to see if they would in fact be interested in the connection. Through practice, you will sharpen your radar and develop better intuition for future intros.

If you don’t have an intro to make, email someone you know and ask what types of intros would be beneficial to them (an investor? a designer? a plumber?), and remember it for the future. That’s it. I guarantee if you practice this, something positive will come from it… and sooner than you might think.

If it doesn’t, I’ll buy you a cup of coffee.  :)