During my years at Moz, I had the amazing opportunity to create a lot of crazy and fun projects ranging from a full-size mascot, bobbleheads, vinyl toys, buttons and an insane amount of graphic t-shirts. The list goes on, but here are some of my favorites.
In 2015 we had a very cool concept for our Mozcon annual marketing conference where our mascot was taking the attendees on an epic and fun adventure “through the jungle of content marketing.” We reiterated this concept in our lofty motion animation at the start of the conference and throughout all of our marketing campaigns prior to the conference. I was asked to come up with a memorable swag item that we could give out to our attendees. We had the mascot using a boom box in the intro animation, so it only made sense we should make a Roger bobblehead so he could rock out to his tunes.
Like most of my projects, the concept stage starts with a pad and pencil. I really like to think through how projects like this are going to move and feel in your hand, as well as how it will look on your desk.
The packaging for something like this is a critical part of a memorable brand experience. I like to see people just as excited to get their hands on the packaging as the object inside the box. Moz is a really playful brand, so the look and feel of the packaging reflected that.
I was very happy with how this project turned out but what really made me feel particularly excited was seeing our customers go nuts over the swag. This photo made my day.
The 2014 Mozcon featured the most cuddly swag a conference could offer. Our goal was to offer something that was super easy for people to take home. Our Roger fans immediately got busy throwing, hugging and stuffing these little guys into overhead compartments for the trip back from Mozcon.
2013 the year of the vinyl Roger. Holy moly- this was a learning experience. I think it was in 2011 when this project started. At the time, Seomoz was going through a rebrand and we needed branding elements that would assist with carrying over our fan base to the new brand. When I was promoted to Art Director, this was one of my primary responsibilities. The mascot already had a strong following and was recognizable among our existing fan base. With a few design upgrades to the original design, we started playing around with the idea of making a toy. The first few iterations were hand made by me.
I sculpted the figure out of clay and made myself a few molds so I could make PVC copies. This was not a scalable solution.
Then we looked and looked for a toy manufacturer that could help us with the creation of an injection mold process. We found one company out of LA but just after we were in the final stages the company shut down- and just like that the project was put on ice for about a year. It was a very long and frustrating experience.
Then, I found the vinyl mascot salvation on a random image search: happyworker.com. This company was so easy to work with and they got the project done very fast and with few iterations. The clay models I made a year before helped tremendously with proportions and sizing. Thank you so much to the Happy Worker team and in particularly Heidi Peckover for helping us realize our dreams with all our crazy projects.
Roger has been one of the most successful elements of the Moz brand and I am proud to have been a part of that success. People have gotten tattoos, worn shirts and expressed so much enthusiasm about Roger. His popularity truly blows my mind. Roger- It's been a crazy ride, my old friend, and now I bid you adieu.