Business, Ad Industry May 27, 2021

Clients in Space

It’s surprising how quickly the fantastic can become mundane.

I expect that every once in a while, the Sultan of Brunei is like, “Oh yeah, I do have quite a few cars, don’t I?” And Jeff Bezos thinks to himself: “That’s a decently sized boat, isn’t it?”

Even those of us outside of the billionaire class can lose sight of how objectively amazing things are. Case in point: One of our clients currently has a robot operating on the surface of Mars, and we haven’t really talked about it very much.

We are of course talking about Motiv Space Systems and the robotic arm they built that’s currently helping the Perseverance Rover explore the Martian surface.

Motiv is the kind of company you like to root for. Basically, three engineers with backgrounds in space robotics decided that they could do a better job out on their own. So, they started their own company right here in Pasadena (yay Pasadena!), and since then, they’ve done all kinds of things. Yes, building the robotic arm and other components for NASA/JPL’s Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover, but also cutting the cost to put a robotic arm on a space mission by a factor of about 10x, supporting a NASA mission that’s going to 3D print a solar array in space, and working hand in hand with JPL to develop robotic hardware that can function without heat in the coldest reaches of the galaxy.

And we can say with confidence that even more great things are coming soon.

We started working with Motiv just before the pandemic hit in early 2020. We helped them navigate the switch from primarily event-based outreach to the “new normal”; developed and implemented a PR strategy that’s helped them to get at least some of the credit that they deserve for their amazing work; and helped to tell their story in ways that show just how compelling and remarkable that story is.

Beyond all that, I think just about everyone at the agency has had a moment where we looked up at the night sky and thought about how 38 million miles from here is a robot going about its business on the Red Planet — a robot that was designed and built by one of our clients right here in Pasadena.

Good luck robot. We’re cheering for you.


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