In 2014, Spanish golfer Miguel Angel Jimenez joined the Champions Tour and earned a victory his first week out. Around the same time, he also played extraordinarily well at The Masters.

In addition to playing well, Jimenez is also somewhat of a unique character, particularly in the golf world. The Spaniard is known for his flowing blonde ponytail, the signature cigar in his mouth during play and of course his love of good wine.

Inspired by Jimenez’s larger-than-life persona and his victory, we drew comparisons to the Dos Equis “Most Interesting Man in the World,” with Jimenez being the real-life version of this character. We crafted statements about Jimenez and meme-worthy graphics to go along with them. Some of the statements included: “Arnold Palmer orders the ‘Miguel Jimenez’ at restaurants”; “Trophies long to kiss him”; and “He may miss fairways but they miss him more.”

The Miguel Memes were posted to one central spot on PGATOUR.COM, along with a blank version of the photo so that fans could make their own. PGA TOUR-crafted memes were shared to Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. From there, the community responded in a big way, sharing their own memes about Jimenez in comments on PGATOUR.COM and across social media. The best of the fan-created memes were gathered and shared on PGATOUR.COM.

Between the memes crafted by the PGA TOUR and the ones crafted by fans, the execution helped the TOUR to engage current fans and to reach new audiences about a player many of them hadn’t heard of. A byproduct was that people were also exposed to the PGA TOUR in a new light—and one that’s also indicative of the direction we’re heading in online.

It’s also notable that this execution earned a Cynopsis Sports Award in the “Hashtag Promotion” category.

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My role: Content Strategy & Content Promotion

One of my first projects when I joined the PGA TOUR was to work on a website redesign project. PGATOUR.COM had had the same look and basic functionality for about six years, an eternity in the digital space. During that time, consumption patterns changed. Mobile traffic was on the rise and PGATOUR.COM wasn’t mobile-friendly and thus under-serving a key and growing part of its audience. The redesign of PGATOUR.COM would tackle the mobile environment head-on, moving to a responsive design, among other notable changes.

One of the big changes was moving to a visually-driven site. The shift did a few things. For one, it created a more visual navigation that was more in line web trends and the type of mobile-friendly navigation seen on sites like Pinterest and others. But it also did more than that. It tied into an inherent part of the game. Unlike many sports that are played in same arena, golf is in a new spot every week. And those spots happen to be amazingly beautiful. We designed the site to put a spotlight on that kind of beauty.

The combination of a photography-rich site with mobile responsiveness is an interesting one—for my team in particular as the folks who are responsible with populating and updating the site. As we embarked on this new design, it meant the need for new disciplines both in how we shoot and in how we edit photos. For example, an image that’s tight on a player won’t crop well at smaller breakpoints.

At the time we relaunched, very few sites were embracing responsive design. In the sports world, in particular, we were one of the first to go in this direction. Despite having the need to balance a redesign project with a website audience that includes more traditional web users, we had to design for where the world was heading. In the time since we relaunched, we’ve only seen those mobile consumption patterns go further up.

We are also in a state of constantly updating the site. It’s never perfect but is a work in progress. The key is that the redesign gave us a strong foundation and others have agreed. In 2015, PGATOUR.COM won a “Best Website” award from Cynopsis Sports Media, beating out the likes of Bleacher Report, ESPN, Pac-12 Networks and Sports Illustrated.

Homepage before the redesign

Homepage before the redesign

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Homepage before the redesign

Mobile version of the homepage before the redesign

Mobile version of the homepage before the redesign

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Mobile version of the homepage after the redesign

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Desktop version of the homepage after redesign

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My role: Digital Strategy, Content Strategy

Buffalo Wild Wings was looking for a way to increase traffic and buzz during the winter months, a time of the year when sales tend to dip. With basketball in full swing during that timeframe and with a 20 to 30-something core audience, we connected BWW to basketball and in-restaurant experiences. To do that, we leveraged smartphones, user-generated content and serious competition.

It started with in-restaurant activities (known as “challenges”) that were shared and completed through the location-based mobile app SCVNGR. The challenges were themed around basketball and BWW product offerings, all playing up the brand’s fun persona. The approach effectively added a game layer to every BWW location in the country.

As people took part in challenges, they earned points, which translated to real-life rewards, including a free Coca-Cola, 20 percent off a tab and a free order of wings. The challenges were scripted in such a way that it would require multiple visits to earn points for larger rewards. Part of our goal was increasing foot traffic so scripting this correctly was important.

We took the rewards angle a step further with an additional game layer. The more players competed throughout basketball season, the better shot they had at a grand prize, a trip to the NBA Finals with Scottie Pippen. An online leaderboard allowed players to track their progress against the competition.

The leaderboard also tracked the top BWW locations for activity in the program. The location with the most points won a party for their staff. Incorporating this element helped to get BWW staff telling guests about the program. This proved key for the program’s success. We also used table tents and in-restaurant TV screens to promote the program.

As people took part in the challenges, they shared content with their friends on Twitter and Facebook, helping to extend the reach of the program and the BWW brand. Over the course of the 12-week program, it generated 118 million social impressions thanks to all that sharing.

The program was successful on another important level–repeat traffic. One in three people who played came back to a BWW location to play again during the program.

The media took notice in a big way and this program also racked up several awards, including the Promo Pro Awards Best Mobile Campaign of the Year.

My role: Strategy Director

After helping Moet Hennessy’s Chilean wine brand, Lapostolle, develop an online presence, we noticed a growing and very engaged community. Lapostolle had legions of fans and followers who were regularly talking to each other online about Lapostolle. But we wanted to get them talking about Lapostolle to friends who possibly hadn’t heard about the brand before.

We decided to create a reward for one special fan—the experience of a lifetime—an apprenticeship at the winery in Chile. While there, this lucky fan would learn the ins and outs of winemaking from a world-class team, and leave with their very own selection of wine.

To become this apprentice, fans had to take to Twitter and “uncork the passion.” They were asked to Tweet about their passion for wine. Creativity was strongly encouraged. Fans could include a link to a video or photo in their Tweet—anything that illustrated their passion. From there, participants had to get out the vote, asking friends and family to vote for their Tweet on a dedicated website.

The votes poured in and we narrowed the participants to a top 10. From there, social media (and wine) celebrity Gary Vaynerchuk, a Lapostolle head winemaker and a blogger from Tasting Table helped make the final pick. The Lapostolle apprentice was crowned and her experience in Chile was captured for all fans to see.

As a result of this program, the brand grew for the first time in four years. This was easy to measure as this program was the only one the small brand had going. Engagement across Facebook and Twitter doubled during the program.

Uncork The Passion was named Chief Marketer’s Best Twitter Campaign of the Year.

My role: Strategy Director, Content Director