New Uncle Drew Video and Merchandise are a Slam Dunk!

New Uncle Drew Video and Merchandise are a Slam Dunk!

I grew up playing basketball and have been an avid basketball fan ever since. So when Lapine became an official Uncle Drew Merchandise licensee, to say I was excited was an understatement. Lapine was given the responsibility to brainstorm the ideal merchandise for basketball fans. What would fans want to wear? Where should it be sold? Pepsi created and provided Lapine the ultimate logo for the merchandise and we got to work. Using our Digital Marketplace resources and Consumer Insights expertise, Lapine presented the hottest trends in merchandise and the perfect fit for Uncle Drew fans. Lapine sourced and created the merchandise as well as developed a web shop where Uncle Drew fans are always just a click away from ordering the historic ballers merchandise. The merchandise ranges from the most stylish hooded sweatshirts, to hip flat brim hats with the simplistic logo of Uncle Drew’s face profile. The next step was how to spread the word about the new Uncle Drew video, as well as the new merchandise and web shop. There was one very obvious place for the launch of the new Uncle Drew merchandise, the 66th NBA All Star game in New Orleans.  Stepping off the plane and being welcomed by All-Star weekend signs and posters of all the greats cemented the decision to have Uncle Drew represented at the event. Pepsi took over a popular pizza shop down the street from the Smoothie King Center, and transformed it into a retro Uncle Drew Pop Up Shop.  There was Uncle Drew merchandise to buy, old school basketball posters surrounded the walls, and cups and plates with Uncle Drew’s profile on them, Pepsi... Read more
New Year, New Tech: What to Look for at the Consumer Electronics Show 2017

New Year, New Tech: What to Look for at the Consumer Electronics Show 2017

With the New Year comes the annual Consumer Electronics Show, showcasing the best and brightest new technologies on the market. This year’s show, the 50th anniversary, will be held from January 5-8 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Though different tech sites point to a variety of anticipated trends, all seem to agree that CES 2017 will have a great mix of brand new and updated technologies. Wearable tech is predicted to revamp its image to better align with consumer’s needs. Consumers no longer want wearables that simply track their activity, interested instead in pieces that actually train and motivate them to reach their goals; smartwatches like Garmin’s Vívoactive HR that provide real time coaching on the go, and even wearables for children that teach healthy habits, like Garmin’s Vívofit Jr. This change comes as consumers look for products that carry through on their promises of helping them lead and maintain a healthy lifestyle, rather than tracking what they already do. Digital assistants and artificial intelligence, like Amazon’s Alexa or Google’s Home, are sure to be a key focus of CES 2017, as expanded capabilities make these technologies increasingly integrative in consumer’s day to day lives. Digital assistants are moving beyond simple command-based actions to more automated and predictive behaviors like replenishment of everyday necessities when supplies start to run low. Artificial intelligence is serving to streamline consumer’s lives by compiling their behaviors across all apps and programming to better understand their needs. Home robots and companion robots will undoubtedly command a great deal of attention; combining artificial intelligence and home monitoring with an added personality factor. Digital assistance technologies are... Read more
The Gatorade Fuel Lab Experience

The Gatorade Fuel Lab Experience

I’ve received all kinds of requests over my tenure at Lapine, so when I was on a Gatorade conference call and the question was asked, “Can Lapine build a vending machine that could output customized bottles?” I gave the answer I learned from a mentor and said “Anything is possible with time and money”. After discussing the true need, I learned what Gatorade really wanted was to create a mobile experience where people could engage with the brand and ultimately create a personalized bottle as part of the experience. Over a three month period we worked with Gatorade and their partners to figure out a way to make their ask a reality. There were countless planning hours where so many details were discussed. Still when we went to the kickoff event at SxSW in Austin, I was in awe to see the massive undertaking this was from start to finish. So many pieces had to come together to make the Gatorade Fuel Lab happen – from getting electricity to places where it normally is not found to navigating last minute deliveries when the roads were closed for the festival. Our Lapine team was there 4 days before the event started, which allowed us to see an empty warehouse space turn into a showcase for Gatorade innovation. Not sure if the pictures do justice to the coolness of this experience. At the end of the day, we turned a vision into actuality – that’s one of the aspects I love about our job. We get to be at the start of brainstorming ideas and developing strategies to see it to a tangible end, usually with merchandise and social media feedback. And this time, we also... Read more
Healthy Lifestyle for the New Year

Healthy Lifestyle for the New Year

At this point, if you’re like me, everyone is finishing off all of their Christmas and Hanukkah leftovers, fending off your family member or friend for that last homemade cookie or latke, hoping to get one more taste of holiday bliss. While it’s certainly acceptable to be over-indulging with adult beverages, seafood, red meats and savory desserts this time of year, your waistline and overall energy level might not exactly be where you want it to be. Heading into the New Year, some of the keys to maintaining a high level of both mental well-being and physical fitness include a reformed and healthy appetite, regimented exercise and a consistent pattern of sleep and relaxation. Here are some ideas to jumpstart the New Year and the new you that I plan on adopting. One of the ultimate keys to shedding your unwanted holiday weight is your eating patterns and the types of foods you are consuming.  After gaining 6-8lbs of “bad weight” since Thanksgiving, I will be starting a clean eating initiative as I enter 2015 and one of the first tools I will be grabbing to assist in this effort is the SmartPower Duet® Blender/Food Processor from Cuisinart®. This seven-speed, multi-function gem gives you the ability to effortlessly create food or beverage options that should help remove yourself from your recent patterns of gluttony.  The supplied recipe book provides an encyclopedia of healthy choices ranging from fresh fruit and vegetable smoothies, healthy soups and salad dressings, to grilled chicken stir-fry. After reforming your diet, another integral part of your new health initiative is getting into a habit of consistent cardiovascular... Read more
It’s Turkey Time!

It’s Turkey Time!

Happy Holidays everyone! I must have done something right my first trip around the blog because I was graciously invited back to contribute.  Well, I am ecstatic that I am back because this is quite possibly my favorite time of the year with Thanksgiving just around the corner and Christmas time on the horizon. Copious amounts of food, football from sunrise to sundown and most importantly quality time with my family highlights this day to give thanks.  This time of year gives us a chance to step back, remove ourselves from our careers for just a moment and realize how we all got here in the first place; from the support of our loved ones. Well now that we have established why this time of year is so special, let’s dive into one of the cornerstones of this holiday: the food!  Turkey, ham and roasts of all kinds are prevalent at the dinner table, which is perfect because Nordicware® has introduced a brand new line of oven-to-table roasters. With the Extra Large Roaster with Rack, every Thanksgiving chef has one of the key components to cook a feast.  Made of sturdy cast aluminum and manufactured in the USA, this item is an essential tool to make the day a little more delicious. I certainly know my mouth is watering the more I talk about it. In my eyes, Thanksgiving is not a time for one to be counting calories, so for those a little less health conscious this holiday season, go pick up a Rotisserie Turkey Fryer from Waring Pro®.  My uncle serves up both a roasted turkey and... Read more
Making the Most of Autumn

Making the Most of Autumn

Being from small-town New England I can verify the authenticity of one time-honored TV stereotype – leaf peepers. They exist and they come out in full force this time of year. To be fair, though, if I lived in a city with concrete at all turns, I too might be enticed to pack a bag and go for a casual drive up the Merritt Parkway – something that any native Connecticuter would avoid at all costs. I recently took a windows-down, 20 mile drive north on this pseudo-highway up to my parents’ house and was reminded just how ideal this time of year can be. Temperatures are crisp, but not hibernation-cold, leaves are brilliant shades of orange and red and hot chocolate is a treat, not a necessity. While I will always be a summer girl, Autumn definitely does have its perks. So before we fall back into another polar vortex (one of the more ominous weather descriptions in history, if you ask me), try getting out and enjoying the season with some of these activities. Hiking One of the best ways to soak up Fall is by becoming one with Mother Nature and going for a hike, or a walk in the park if hiking’s not your thing. Personally, my family and I always try to take a trip to the Berkshires before winter and hike some of the trails there. With streams cutting through pathways and amazing panoramic views, we definitely get to experience the best of the season. One trip, however, my cousins and I took a wrong turn and ended up off-trail, stuck in the... Read more