Category: News

Holiday Conspiracy

12/26/2014
EF_Happy_Holidays It's that time of year. Tens-of-thousands of socks are nailed above fireplaces, our landscape is covered with millions of electric bulbs and our living rooms are filled with cut and quickly drying conifers wrapped in still more electric lights and placed next to the fireplace. But we're not here to share our theory about holiday traditions being a conspiracy by the fire-hose manufacturing industry (spoiler alert: they are). We're here to let you know that Echo-Factory will be closing at noon on December 24th to let our workers spend some time with their families, and maybe even find a bit of snow to frolic in. We'll be back on January 5th to swap stories of holiday survival. Have a very happy, and safe, holiday. We'll see you on the other side.

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Our Doors Are Open!

10/28/2014

OpenOfficeHours

Echo-Factory welcomes Pasadena startups

Beginning November 7, we’ll be opening our doors to startups looking for some advice and resources, every Friday in November from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sitting down with laptop We’re happy to offer these services for free to startups in the community. We’ve traveled down the same road as many of you and would like to help you overcome the challenges. We know we wouldn’t have gotten to where we are today without significant people who were generous with their time and support. This is our way of giving back, and in general, we like to see other businesses grow and thrive. That’s a big part of our commitment to the work we do for our clients. So if you’d like to share your story, bounce ideas off of us, or bring us your problems, we’ll be waiting here every Friday. Coffee, donuts, and laptop Let us know you’re coming by checking our Eventbrite page. We’ll get the French press ready.

Join us at Connect Week 2014

10/15/2014
connect week, innovate pasadena

Innovate Pasadena hosts a series of independently organized events on emerging tech and design trends across the city

Ever since we moved to Pasadena, we’ve been taking in all the city has to offer. One of the many reasons we chose Pasadena for our new company headquarters was to connect with the innovation and startup community. Our very own president, Mike Schaffer, has been involved with Innovate Pasadena for many projects in the past year, including co-organizing Friday Morning Coffee Meetups. In the tradition of Los Angeles Innovation Week, Innovate Pasadena is hosting Connect Week 2014, October 20-26, with 30 events over 7 days. Join seminars, workshops and social events hosted by businesses and institutions in Pasadena. It’s a chance to learn more about design trends, open data efforts, crowd funding, emerging biotech, 3D printing, successful entrepreneurship and innovation in the City of Roses. Whether you’re the founder of a startup, an entrepreneur, an investor or an average, curious John or Jane Doe, there’s something for everyone at Connect Week. Get an inside tour of a gaming company at the Business Technology Center. Learn practical tips for early-stage startups at Pasadena City College. Come along for a tech crawl in Old Town Pasadena and network at Barney’s Beanery. Ask questions of a panel of entrepreneurs about crowdfunding sources at Caltech. Attend a job fair (no suits, no ties) and mingle with some of the top tech companies looking for top talent. Immerse yourself in a CSI experience at Pasadena Bioscience Collaborative. Join the Envision Summit, the first of its kind in Pasadena, where experts and innovators will convene to share their insights on the future drivers of innovation for the next 20 years. There’s much more, and you can bet we’ll be there. This is a not-to-miss opportunity, and it’s happening right in our neighborhood! For more information, visit connectpasadena.com. We’ll see you there!

We’re Moving to Pasadena!

09/10/2014

So Cal Ad Agency is Moving to Pasadena

Echo-Factory’s New Home is in the Heart of Old Town

Read the official PRESS RELEASE.

In the 19th century, the Old Spanish Trail carried migrants from Santa Fe, New Mexico to what would one day be Los Angeles, California. The Oregon Trail (the real one, not the computer game) carried pioneers west from Independence, Missouri to the Pacific Northwest.

In keeping with the venerable tradition of American westward migration, Echo-Factory is pulling up stakes and heading west on that old 210 freeway in search of greener pastures (metaphorically speaking, we know California is in a serious drought – do your part, conserve water!). We are headed to a new land of opportunity called Pasadena, and we can’t wait for the adventure to begin.

The office is just about finished and we’re packing up. We’ve bought out the bubble wrap sections of every office supply store within a four-mile radius (exaggeration), and we’ve wrapped everything from the staplers to Mike, our fearless co-leader (no exaggeration). We’re boxing up most of the charm, the personality, the creativity and the fun, and we’re shipping it first class, insured and certified to our new location in the heart of Old Town. (Some of that go-get-em positivity is staying back in the Rancho Cucamonga office, which we are keeping open to best serve our Inland Empire clientele.)

Pasadena is a veritable hotbed of innovation and entrepreneurship, and that’s our kind of town. Over the past year, organizations like Innovate Pasadena and the companies they represent have sent over the welcome wagon. We’re looking forward to being a positive contribution to this business community that is creative, artistic, scientific and enthusiastic. And while we’ll miss our Rancho Cucamonga home, as they say, nothing ventured, nothing gained.

We plan to be up and running at the new location by the end of September. Our new office address is: 36 West Colorado Blvd., Suite 200. We’re on the second level just a hop, skip and a jump away from the Apple Store.

Until then, catch us at Innovate Pasadena’s What’s Up Social next Wednesday, September 17, from 6-9 p.m.

Want to see the new office? Check out our mood boards on Pinterest. Want to watch the moving process in all of its photo-documented glory? Hit up our Instagram. And stay current on company and industry news and trends by following us on Twitter and Facebook.

And, of course, don’t forget to peruse the portfolio before you leave.

MagLite: Rebranding an American Classic

08/07/2014

Maglite_Weather_Banner

MagLite on The Weather Channel.

The Weather Channel is a cable and satellite TV station that has been broadcasting weather forecasts, analyses and news since the early 1980s. The channel is received by nearly a billion American households and has a viewership of about 210,000. When we had the opportunity to produce two commercials for MagLite on The Weather Channel, we knew the spots would bring vital exposure to the MagLite brand and feature the flashlights at their best. We wrote scripts for both a :15 and a :20 commercial that met the challenge of making an impact in a short timeframe.

"Lights Out"

In this :15 spot, titled, “Lights Out,” we created a desperate scenario that was resolved with the comforting and familiar click of a flashlight. To make an impact, we relied on a strong visual and heart-pounding audio. We wanted viewers to have the sense that, when conditions are bleak, they can count on their MagLite. In order to direct the viewer toward a specific purchase, we created two versions of this commercial, each ending with two featured MagLite models. The tagline reinforces a sense of security as well as national pride: “Turn Your Light On, America.”

"There When You Need Us"

In this :20 spot, titled, “There When You Need Us,” we feature a man depending on his MagLite in several extreme situations. Since our deadlines made live action prohibitive, we used custom photography and CG effects to illustrate the message that MagLite can see a person through nearly any unpredictable circumstance. As with the :15 spot, we left the viewer with a CTA image of various MagLite models. We’re loving working with MagLite, and we think these commercials turned out great. For more insight into this project, check out our most recent press release. In our next MagLite update, we’ll introduce their new website, still under construction, and discuss the process and logic behind their reorganized and redesigned online home. Like what you see? Check out our work page to view more Echo-Factory projects and clients.

R.W. Lyall & Company: An Established Industry Leader Expands into New Markets

08/05/2014

It’s been a busy summer here at Echo-Factory, and we’re excited to share one of our recently completed projects: the R.W. Lyall & Company rebrand.

Headquartered in Corona, California, with a factory in New Berlin, Wisconsin, Lyall is a family-owned-and-operated business manufacturing pipeline component products for the North American oil and gas industry. With sales territory stretching across the continental United States, a new and bigger Wisconsin facility, and a push to enter new markets, Lyall needed to update its brand image to better reflect its position as a market leader. Their outdated promotional materials did not accurately reflect their capabilities, and their website needed to be redesigned and reorganized to offer a more expansive view of their technological expertise. The site also needed to be refined to better serve as a sales tool and lead funnel.   EF_EB_Lyall_2 New Logo The Echo-Factory team started by updating the Lyall logo with a new typeface and font, adjusting the placement of the flame to work in new digital formats. We also rebranded Lyall’s marketing communications, presentations and product brochures, refreshing the copy and giving them a clean, sophisticated look. New Tagline Next we crafted a new tagline that speaks to the company’s experience and longstanding commitment to excellence:  “Keeping the Oil and Gas Industry Moving Since 1970.” New Website And finally, we completely redesigned and rebuilt the Lyall website. The new site features custom photography of products and manufacturing processes and expanded overviews of all the markets that Lyall serves. Downloadable product brochures, detailed illustrations of product applications, and installation instruction videos enhance the user experience. The site is more easily navigable and is designed to take advantage of all current SEO and SEM opportunities. Lyall now has promotional materials that reflect who they are—an industry leader poised for growth and expansion. We are proud of the work we have done thus far and are grateful for the opportunity to work with such a great business.
“It was a dedicated effort and true collaboration between our employees and their team to build a website and materials that precisely reflect our company’s expanded capabilities and longstanding commitment to excellence.” - Jeff Lyall, President & CEO
We encourage you to visit the new website: rwlyall.com Stay tuned for more updates on the latest projects from our growing portfolio.        

Why Snapchat Had No Choice But to Apologize

01/13/2014

Snapchat, the app that allows you to view images for seconds before they disappear, turned down a $3 billion buyout from Facebook last fall (despite the fact that they have absolutely no revenue). Now they might be kicking themselves.

They made a big mistake.

They messed up. They goofed. The company that’s built entirely on a promise of privacy for photos and phone numbers got hacked on New Year’s Eve. 4.6 million panicked users later, they had a PR nightmare on their hands.

Getting hacked is pretty awful, but most people realize, a company never wants that outcome, it just happens.

The real issue: Snapchat didn’t address the situation appropriately. In fact, users felt that initially, Snapchat accepted shutterstock_132591887none of the responsibility.

It took about a week, and after the CEO failed to apologize on the Today show, the company finally apologized in a blog post. “We are sorry for any problems this issue may have caused you and we really appreciate your patience and support.”

Thanks Snapchat. But is it too little too late?

 Your behavior in times of crisis reaches further than your customers, it impacts your investors too. Especially potential investors that have been watching Snapchat pretty carefully since the billion-dollar turndown.

When a major flop like this happens, we say, admit it, and make your customers feel like their feelings matter. It’s not about who’s at fault; it’s about how you approach the situation and its solution.

Pride can be very flattering, but arrogance doesn’t look great on anyone. Your job is to make sure your product delivers on its promise. If you fall short on delivery, it might be wise to bring in some pros.

What's the lesson?

The takeaway from all of this is that Snapchat could learn a thing or two about being honest, upfront and apologetic to their customers.

They could even take a page from Lululemon, who faced a potential PR disaster last year when they failed to address an unfortunate situation of see-through yoga pants properly. Their stock plummeted, and they promptly apologized, fixed the issue and, now, they are back on track.

It turns out, transparency can be a good thing.

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How To Destroy A Brand In One Press Release

10/15/2013
GoTemple This morning a press release hit my inbox announcing that MediaTemple had been acquired by GoDaddy.  Right away, I started writing our clients who host their websites on MediaTemple, recommending that we start the process of finding them a new host. (more…)

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Why SOPA’s bad for Business

01/20/2012

If you were anywhere near the Internet on Wednesday, you saw our website and thousands of other sites including Wikipedia and Google participate in a blackout protesting the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and its corresponding bill, the Protect IP Act (PIPA).

If you’re not up to speed on SOPA and PIPA, here’s the deal. The bills seek to block the illegal use of copyrighted content online.

Now, as an ad agency whose bread and butter relies on the creation of ideas, you’d think we’d be for SOPA and PIPA. You’d be wrong. No, we don’t want to see our stuff get ripped off. But, even more than that, we don’t want to see these bills fall into the wrong hands. And, they undoubtably will. Think McCarthy in the 1950s. That’s the level of abuse we’re talking about here.

These bills give people the power to blacklist and shutdown websites based on the smallest perceived infraction. According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), “rightsholders, ISPs, or the government could shut down sites with accusations of infringement, and without real due process.”

So, what happens if your site is blacklisted (deservedly or not)? Well, as you’d expect with any blacklist, other online companies have to shut you out. If you’re advertising through ad networks such as Google AdWords, using Paypal on your site or running an SEO campaign, all that’s over. Under the law, other sites will have to stop linking to your site and search engines will be forced to forget your site exists. Once you’re blacklisted, you turn into persona non grata. No one online will want to associate with you for fear they’ll be blacklisted too.

If you manage to escape being blacklisted, the bills still come with negative consequences. The EFF states that SOPA and PIPA will cost the private sector millions of dollars and reduce online security. Most importantly, the bills will do nothing when it comes to stopping online piracy. The tools outlined by these bills aren’t anywhere near sophisticated enough to keep tech-saavy users, the people doing most of the online pirating, from using content illegally.

Thankfully, we’re making progress. Due to the massive protest from the American public this week, many supporters of SOPA and PIPA have jumped ship. Even the White House has come out against the two bills. With so many against SOPA and PIPA, leaders in the House and Senate have decided to put off voting until some agreement can be reached. What that agreement is or how long it takes remains to be seen. In the meantime, you can help by writing to your representatives in Washington and letting them know just how bad these bills are for you and your business.

Troy Lee Rider Wins Season-Opener

01/09/2012
Cole Seely

Photo by Jeff Kardas

At Saturday night's AMA Supercross season opener, Troy Lee Designs' rider Cole Seely came from relative obscurity to win the first race of the new year.

We love to see our clients win - and Cole's victory Saturday night was symbolic of so much of what Troy Lee does right.

Ray was at the race, and came in this morning talking about how distinctly the Troy Lee riders' gear stood out from every other kit on the track. And that's not something unique to this race. Troy Lee gear has come to epitomize a unique combination of technical brilliance and industry leading style.

Troy Lee Designs' tagline is, "For The World's Fastest Racers." We don't know of another company that so completely lives their tagline.

So - congratulations to Cole and everyone at Troy Lee Designs. We're sure this is just the first taste a great season for your racing team.

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