Tag Archives: sports

Innovation: An Amphibious Prosthetic Leg

In 2004, U.S. Marine Corp. veteran Dan Lasko lost his left leg while serving in Afghanistan. Unfortunately, he is far from the only casualty of war; roughly 6% of all injured veterans have lost a limb. This makes it critical to innovate new solutions to help veterans return to an active lifestyle.

An active lifestyle was very important to Dan Lasko; the 33-year old has two young sons and all are active swimmers. But Lasko faced a unique problem in that that amputees cannot easily swim; prosthetics legs are not designed to go between land and water in a functional way.

In a collaboration between Northwell Health, J. Walter Thompson New York, and Lasko, the team designed and developed an amphibious prosthetic leg. Using extensive design and testing, “The Fin” was developed – 3-D-printed prosthetic leg that can help one naturally walk into the water, swim, and even dive.

Innovation changes lives.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the steps of the innovation process.
  2. Students: What are the critical factors to successfully developing a new product?
  3. Show the video of The Fin’s development: https://youtu.be/m8KmWGZvkI4
  4. More information is also available at: https://www.northwell.edu/about/news/press-releases/northwell-returns-amputees-water-creating-first-3d-printed-amphibious-prosthetic-leg
  5. There are numerous other innovations that are focused on improving lives. Divide students into teams and have team search for a similar problem, and solution, to the one discussed in this case.

Source: Ad Week  

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A Year after Super Bowl Ad: Death Wish Coffee

In the 2016 Super Bowl, small business Death Wish Coffee beat out 15,000 other small businesses to win a 30-second Super Bowl commercial, funded by Intuit QuickBooks. Before the commercial, the company had days where it sold low amounts of coffee each day from its Web site and New York coffee shop. What would happen to the business after the Super Bowl?

Before the Super Bowl, the company’s Web site had a resting count of approximately 500 visitors. By the time the ad finished running, there were more than 147,000 unique visitors on its Web site, and almost all were from mobile devices. And, during the Super Bowl game time, Death Wish Coffee sold more than $250,000 of coffee.

Today, the company is doing great and is still growing by leaps and bounds. In 2015, Death Wish Coffee had approximately $3 million in revenue, and their estimate for 2016 was an optimistic $10 million in revenue. But of course, that was BEFORE the Super Bowl ad. By the time last year ended, Death Wish Coffee revenue had doubled its estimates to $20 million!

“Super Bowl commercials work!”

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the risks and benefits of advertising at the Super Bowl.
  2. Show the Ad Age’s recent interview with the company: http://adage.com/article/special-section-super-bowl/death-coffee-s-year-long-super-bowl-high/308371/?utm_source=daily_email&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=adage&ttl=1490741042&utm_visit=226837
  1. For backstory about how this ad was developed, show the video “Anatomy of an Ad”:  http://adage.com/videos/a-super-bowl-death-wish-part-3/493 (Note: There are three videos in total that explain the process of developing the commercial. Students will find these behind-the-scenes interesting.)
  2. View the company’s Web site: http://www.deathwishcoffee.com/.
  3. Discuss why this ad and company have been so successful.

Source:  Ad Age Daily

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Super Bowl 2017 Advertising

superbowl

With hundreds of millions of viewers worldwide, the Super Bowl has become one of the premier venues for marketers. The thrills, the chills, the laughter, the tears – and that’s just the advertisements! At a cost of $5 million for 30 seconds of air time, the Super Bowl is also the most expensive advertising placement of any event or show. Add the costs of designing and producing ads, plus the integration into other marketing tactics, and a company can easily spend upwards of $6 million at a single event.

Love them or hate them, Super Bowl advertisements have become a talking point during and after the game. It’s a big stage, and can also be a big risk. With an audience of 111.3 million viewers, the 51st Super Bowl is now ranked as the third most watched TV program in U.S. history. And, days later, we are still watching ads and measuring results.

Watch the ads – which company do you think did the best, and worst, job on their advertisements?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Bring up one of the Web sites that have all the Super Bowl ads: http://adage.com/article/special-report-super-bowl/ads-super-bowl-li-a-z/307736/#Gentlemen
  2. Divide students into teams. Have each team select a Super Bowl ad to analyze and present in class.
  3. What is the target market, key message, and offer from the ad?
  4. How does the ad integrate with a company’s other advertisements?
  5. Are the messages integrated with a company’s Web site and social media?
  6. As a class, after each commercial have students assign one to five stars for the advertisements. Which advertisement won the class vote?

Source:  Ad Age Daily, Brandchannel.com, USA Today, other news sources

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