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William Grant & Sons Hires ISL as Agency of Record for Seven Brands

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Over the past few years, ISL has grown and honed our service offerings to focus on the intersection of online and off with brands such as Miller Coors and Facebook while continuing to partner with top brands such as Kroger on all things digital and social. The intersection of these core services is our sweet spot (others agreed: check out our Small Agency of the Year award!).

When William Grant & Sons, an independent, family-owned Scottish company that distills Scotch whisky and other select categories of spirits, began a process last year to find a new Digital and Social Media Agency of Record, they found what they were looking for in ISL.

After a competitive review, we’re proud to announce that ISL is William Grant & Sons new Digital and Social Media Agency of Record, responsible for digital and social media activities for 7 of their portfolio brands in the US.

If you know ISL, you know that this couldn’t be a better fit! A run down of the global brands the ISL team will be working on out of our NYC and DC offices are as follow:

Glenfiddich

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The Balvenie

The Balvenie

Tullamore D.E.W.

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Hendrick’s Gin

Hendricks

Sailor Jerry Rum

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Flor De Caña Rum

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Milagro Tequila

Milagro

Get Paid To User Test Our Projects

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Here at ISL, we’ve been working hard on building better UX processes so as to provide the best possible sites/apps/products/experiences. Most recently, a passionate internal group of UX’ers have been tackling user testing and recruiting. They are figuring out how to most effectively conduct user testing and how to more easily find users to test the projects and prototypes we’re developing. This dear reader is where you come in!
Why do we need you? Our projects require us to test with wildly diverse groups of individuals. The types of testing we do most frequently are ones that involve either a live prototype or simply a conversation with a user about daily habits. Seeing the process through which different people complete certain tasks is valuable information for us. For example, you may prepare your morning cereal by pouring in the cereal before the milk to insure that there will always be a good ratio of milk to cereal; while I may eat my cereal dry and wash it down with milk so that it never gets soggy. But, since you are part of our target audience, your cereal eating habits (whatever they may be) will be what we care about, study, and eventually design for.
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So, does this sound awesome or like something you would love to do with us? Did I mention that we often pay you for your time? Does it sound even better now? If so, please fill out this survey so we can get some quick background information. When we have an opportunity to involve you we will contact you with more specifics.

2014 Mobile Year In Review

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Hello Internet, For the 5th year, we worked with DC based Mobile Future to recap the state of mobile technology from the year 2014. Using visual design and some really cool animation to highlight interesting data + statistics, we put together the following video. Enjoy! Some of our favorite stats include:

  • Global mobile data traffic grew by 81% this year.
  • 19 million connected wearable devices will have shipped by the end of the year.
  • Wireless carriers invested a record $33 billion in wireless infrastructure in 2014.
  • The Brazil vs. Germany World Cup game was the most tweeted sports event in history.
  • 2014 saw Queen Elizabeth II send her first tweet from a tablet.
  • Ellen DeGeneres’ 2014 Oscar selfie crashed Twitter by garnering over one million retweets.

If one year in review isn’t enough, check out 2013, 2012, 2011 and  2010.

Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cinna-Party

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The Cinnamon Toast Crunch (CTC) Cinna-Party was a two day livestreamed event where individuals played CTC-themed online games to gain points and trigger real-world activities. As players achieved specific accomplishments online they saw real-world results play out on a customized set. The Cinna-Party was a huge success — becoming the longest viewed page on the client’s website with more than  200,000 views in just 2 days.

Experiential campaigns such as this are comprised of a number of non-traditional components and a lot of out-of-the-box thinking. Here’s an overview of a few elements we focused on:

Set Design + Construction

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We designed and constructed a set centered around a large milk-bowl and raised platform from which a human-sized Cinnamon Toast Crunch square was periodically blasted with “cinnamon” and “dunked” into the bowl. Special set considerations included a primary “cinnamon meter”, secondary activation indicators, and the cinnamon blaster design and function. These were designed for optimal viewing on a live-streaming web video.

Costume Design:

 

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We sourced the design and fabrication of human-sized Cinnamon Toast Crunch square costumes and actors to fill them. These characters populated the set and played out on-set activations throughout the entirety of the live event.

On-Set Activations

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Periodically throughout the engagement, in-game accomplishments online triggered real-world activations on our physical set. These included the primary cinnamon blast and milk bowl dunk and secondary intermediate activations.

Enjoy our Cinna-Party? Check out some similar projects: Nickelodeon SpongeBob Skill Crane and Miller Coors’ Redds Apple Ale launcher.

The Facebook “Mentions Box” Goes Live At The Emmy Awards

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Facebook, already the biggest brand in social media, was looking for a better way to bridge the gap between celebrities and fans, specifically at live events. Behold: The Facebook “Mentions Box” which just debuted at the 2014 Emmy’s — allowing celebrities to “shake” the device to surface a fan question (pulling directly from the event’s Facebook Page) and immediately record a video response back.

At the Emmys, the Mentions Box was used by everyone from Jimmy Fallon, to Matthew McConaughey, to Ty Burrell and Jason Biggs — to stars from Game of Thrones, Orange Is the New Black, and HBO’s Silicon Valley (see below!).

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After many discussions, brainstorms, and rapid prototyping efforts focused on how to best represent the Facebook platform in physical space, we landed on a simple concept drawing inspiration from mediums people already know and enjoy (landing on something between a Magic 8-Ball in function and an Etch-A-Sketch in form).

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Ultimately, we settled on a tablet encased in a polycarbonate form factor, with a luxury car finish.

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We started the process by concepting potential types of physical devices that talent would be able to easily (and quickly) interact with — using cardboard and simple materials to play around with various form factors.

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The admin console (primarily a question moderation tool) sources questions from specific Facebook posts and then pushes approved questions straight to The Facebook Mentions Box.

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Leading up to the Emmy’s, The Mentions Box was featured on Access Hollywood by hosts Billy Bush and Shaun Robinson:

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More pics of the Mentions Box in action, straight from the Access Hollywood Facebook Page!

 

 

 

 


Update
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On September 5th, Facebook teamed up with Stand Up To Cancer to utilize the Mentions Box to connect celebrities with donors supporting the live charity event.

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