Splish splash

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Spouts of water arch over the Fonville Fountain in front of the Alamance Building in Elon University’s Scott Plaza on a hot July afternoon. Construction of Scott Plaza and Fonville Fountain is frequently cited as a turning point in the development of Elon’s modern campus.

 

Back to school, again

Kendra Sharpe has only been a part of Elon’s Interactive Media program for one week, but she already has a good feeling about it. Like most people, Sharpe has had a few difficult jobs since graduating college. After earning a degree in English from the University of North Carolina Charlotte in 2014, she found herself working in a variety of fields.

Managing a thrift store in Greensboro, doing social media for the Charlotte Style Magazine, and being an office assistant at a law firm all came with their own set of trials and tribulations, one being “busy work that kills that creative spark in you.” Three years of not feeling appreciated can be draining for a person and that’s when Sharpe decided that enough was enough.

Switching between different professions gave Sharpe a wakeup call, one that most people don’t get until it’s too late.

“I don’t like to sit in an office and do work for someone else when I could be doing something for myself,” she said.

Like many others, taking the leap and going back to school — getting back into an academic routine — has been a blessing for Sharpe. “Getting back to this space opened my mind to new possibilities. It feels good to be around peers who have similar interests that can help you grow as a person and influence you to think differently.”

Cold drinks and dry handshakes: How a thriving company came to be

Freaker USA is a quirky company located in Wilmington, North Carolina, that sells one-size-fits-all beverage insulators. Or in its own words, Freakers prevent “moist handshakes and sweaty beverages.” Much like its brand, Freaker USA’s writing is similarly eccentric and gives its readers a glimpse at its personality. As a consumer, I enjoy reading how companies came to be. Not only to hear their story, but to also feel a connection to their products. Don’t you feel better knowing a little bit more about the people who make what you buy? Me too.

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Freaker USA shares its story differently from other businesses. The writer replaces the typical, corporate tone with word choices that are fun, exciting and sometimes daring. The passage below is just one, short example of how it communicates its brand to its audience.

“What’s that? You have a baby but you also enjoy bum-wine? Is the FREAKER for you? A match made in heaven, gumdrop. Your little one’s sippy cup can be just as freaked as your 40oz Colt. Also your mom’s wine and your kid sister’s Nalgene and your dad’s beer & the vase you sometimes regrettably send flowers to your ex in.”

Did the writer just call me a gumdrop? Yes. Because that is Freaker USA’s ibrand. Not only does Freaker USA use expressions like “bum-wine,” but it also uses a conversational tone to express that Freaker USA, and its product, is fun.

Being the spirited company that Freaker USA is, it did a spectacular job at telling its story. Not only does Freaker USA inform its reader about what a Freaker is, it also gives you a little piece of the company and its brand  “Freaker USA is a thriving little company filled with joyous little bunny workers.”

As an iMedia student, reading Freaker USA’s story was eye opening. While there are times to be serious, there are also times when it’s okay to be a little quirky.