By Joe Skibbie

When my daughter Alyssa started showing an interest in drawing, we thought what all parents think, ‘she’s so talented, clearly she’ll be the next Van Gogh’.

Adventures of Mar+Com
How DID we come up with the Adventures of Mar + Com?

We started with a dinnertime discussion, ideating what an Adventures of Mar + Com character might look like. We shared ideas, some outrageous, some too clever to ignore while we ate dinner that evening. Over the next few days, it was all she wanted to talk about. What would happen if…

  • Mar+Com were flying super heroes
  • Mar+Com were a challenge solving duo
  • Mar+Com saved the day

All of this got my wheels turning. I started a basic storyboard and script of what a comic book might look like. I showed the results of my thoughts with my daughter who was just turning 8 at the time and she said, I’ll do the drawings. I handed her the script and thought to myself, ‘here goes another project, into the abyss that was her room’. However, to my surprise, she sat down immediately and began drawing out the panels. I was amazed at how she derived action from her sketches and actually followed the storyboard and created action panels to tie in with every single line of dialogue.

We started to discuss getting this actually illustrated and printed. Then we discussed how we can use this to capture the imagination of JRS Mar/Com clients. Typically, our clients are entrepreneurs, startups or small and mid-size business operators who are struggling with the workload of owning their own business. Our customers are predominantly male and between the ages of 45 and 60. This means that they also have kids in the junior high through college ages. What could we produce that was more exciting than a postcard, had a longer shelf life, and could be used to demonstrate our ‘creative chops’?

A campaign was hatched. We were able to demonstrate our core competencies of website design and development, copywriting, graphic design, video production, and analytics tracking into a lead generation campaign highlighting what we can do for businesses of any size.

We immediately began working with an illustrator to turn the written words and early stage drawings into an actual superhero story.

We immediately began working with an illustrator to turn the written words and early stage drawings into an actual superhero story. We created graphics highlighting the illustration process, character features, and images of the services we offered. We secured a billboard to launch the event right at US65 and Route 30 in IN. We incorporated a popup on our website to steer people towards providing their contact information in exchange for a Free comic book. We exclusively targeted small business owner/operators and their staff. We did this through leveraging our relationships with local Chambers of Commerce throughout the Northwest Suburbs of Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana. Included in the Chambers were the CrossRoads Chamber of Commerce, The GOA Regional Business Association, The Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce and the Crown Point Chamber of Commerce.

Over time, we also shared the campaign with our existing constituents via e-Notice in order to drive more visits to our website.

Being that this was a Q1 initiative and that our coordinated launch was postponed until Mid February, we were pleased to drive 10 conversion actions in the six weeks from 02/16 through 03/31. Our conversion goal was to have small business representatives fill out the organic data capture form on our web popup and receive a Free comic book.

We also created on-site activation events around expos hosted by Chambers of Commerce we belong to. For this opportunity, we also secured chloroplast cutouts of the characters, stickers, and comics to distribute. The overall branding impact was solid as well. We created numerous valuable engagements at the expo we attended before the global pandemic created an adverse business environment.

We were even able to pivot to adapt to two canceled expos and mailing the comic books to our database, targeting specific industries in a further measurable campaign, results pending.

The data is what allows us to determine success. The creative is what captures the mind of your prospective clients. We offer management of both. If you’re looking to #BeSeen & #BeHeard, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s discuss your needs and how we can manage the project without adding to your already busy day. CONTACT