Marc-eting 101: Christmas Is Not Coming Early This Year

marc-eting blog

Being a huge New York Knicks fan, we knew we had to ask our CEO Marc Sampogna his thoughts on this year’s NBA Christmas uniforms that were leaked this morning. He shared his creative opinion on the designs and their eco-impact with us below.


Unfortunately there’s no emoji for my reaction to the new design of the NBA’s Christmas uniforms, which happen to be bleh. There’s nothing seasonal, or spectacular about them from a design standpoint, and that’s all I have to say about that. HOWEVER, there are a couple of elements that captured my attention. They’re promoting sustainability! Now this is a change for the NBA, and a good one. Not using any dye or bleach on the uniforms make these collectors items good for the environment and disposable. Marketing tactic? Not sure. But I think it’s a step in the right direction for an association not known for it’s eco-friendly ways. One last element I enjoyed was how they treated the logo, in a wax seal. While I love the nod to Old English times, I’m not sure how it fits in overall with Christmas. But who am I to judge? I’ve just been following the NBA my entire life, love the Knicks, and happen to run a creative branding agency.

Artworks By Rainworks!


Nothing can ruin a morning as quickly as a rain storm. Fortunately, Peregrine Church thought of a clever way to get rain to make people smile instead. The Seattle based artist created rain-activated street art (or, to be specific, ground art) that can only be seen after the rain has soaked into the ground, and named it Rainworks!

After watching Youtube videos that showed red wine rolling straight down a person’s white clothes, Peregrine found out that this was possible because of a super hydrophobic coating that prevented the absorption of liquids. Inspired, Peregrine decided to take some stencils to the street and test out his bio-degradable and environmentally safe hydrophobic coating spray. The formula sat invisibly on top of the concrete during dry weather, and prevented the ground from absorbing water during rain storms.

Much like the recent appearance of moss graffiti, Peregrine’s Rainworks! uses (mostly) natural elements to create art in unexpected places. And while this street art is only legal in because it is not used for advertising, we think brands can find inspiration in the way Peregrine innovated on existing technology and used it in the most creative possible way.

What Sparks Our Fire: Repurposing existing technology in new and creative ways

The Power in a Name


Since 2006, Tesla Motors‘ cars have earned their reputation as industry paragons of energy sustainability. As of last week, they will utilize their technology to revolutionize the home and commercial energy market. At the Tesla Energy Powerwall Home Battery Event held in Hawthorne, CA, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced plans to release the Powerwall Home Battery.

The Powerwall battery will act as power storage for homes and businesses. While there are many uses for the battery’s energy storage, it is mainly seen as a storage system for residences off the energy grid (e.g. residences using solar energy), residences looking to protect against power outages, or residences looking to purchase energy at times when the price is lower and consume it when the price goes up. And while all these will eventually save homeowners money, it’s $3500 price tag will probably lead businesses to become the earliest adopters of the technology. Specifically, businesses that need extra assurances against power-outages. For example, movie theaters, are said to be already looking into this product.

After the event, some tech reporters were quick to point out that home energy storage isn’t exactly new: UPS (or, Uninterruptible Power Supply) technology has been on the market for some time now. However, Tesla’s big announcement brought a few major quality improvements to the existing technology. Tesla’s battery is smaller and more lightweight than any of it’s competitors, and it comes with Tesla’s record of reliability.

But perhaps more importantly, from a branding perspective, by unveiling a Tesla-branded battery at a large event with the whole industry watching, they’ve brought public attention to UPS technology.  By leveraging their existing brand equity in addition to innovating on the existing technology, Tesla was able to bring UPS technology to the forefront of the public eye.

What Sparks Our Fire: The power of brands shifting its public interest towards energy efficient and sustainable technology

Coffee Of The Future

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Single serve coffee pots and their plastic pods are brewing up a lot of controversy, and Singapore-based designer Eason Chow has come up with a conceptual solution to the wastefulness. Instead of the plastic pods, the coffee pot uses sugar covered pods that dissolve in hot water. The pods would come in different sizes and flavors, and the amount of sugar would be adjusted by the thickness of the sugar coated shell. “Chow said he was inspired by sugar-coated candy from his childhood, which would reveal different flavors as the layers dissolved.”- Fast Company.

What Sparks Our Fire: Creative designs that help our favorite products become more environmentally friendly

A Lamp For The Digital Age

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Philips has released the newest addition to their Hue professional wireless lighting collection, Hue Go. It is a portable color-changing lamp, and you guessed it, connects right to your smartphone. You can control Hue Go wirelessly to set timers, controls, notifications, or alarms. Hue Go provides you to get creative with your space and play with light in a new way.

The lamp has seven preset light settings, or allows you to pick your favorite color. It also has 5 patented natural dynamic effects: Cozy Candle, Sunday Coffee, Meditation, Enchanted Forest, and Night Adventure.

The Hue Go has the ability to wake you up in the morning to the glow of simulated sunlight. It also provides lighting that syncs to your music

What Sparks Our Fire: The ability to set the mood-lighting from our devices