Seattle

Seattle vs. New England: Which Town Boasts More Brand Marketing Swagger?

A Letter from Seattle

Dear lovable New England Chowdah-heads,

We’re going to take a look at a few Seattle brands that are cranking it all the way to 12 ahead of the big game. But first, we’ve got some news for you, New England. There’s a little local company down the street from Curator’s offices called Amazon.com. They crunched a few numbers recently and found that Seattle fans love their team more than New England loves its Patriots. What?! How can that be? Well, first they looked at site searches, then they sliced and diced customer purchases. What Amazon discovered is that items from the Seattle Seahawks Fan Shop on Amazon sold more than 8 times the average NFL team, while the Patriots sold at just 2.5 times the average team. 

Ok, ok. I can understand that you might be leery of Amazon’s bias. They sure were quick to jump on the #deflategate bandwagon. 

Let’s take a look at some other Seattle-based brands and see how they’re participating in this Seahawks frenzy. Everyone knows Boston is famous for tea parties and Seattle loves its coffee. Starbucks, an official partner of the Seahawks, calls the coffee-drinking fans the “Legion of Brew.” This interesting partnership delivered exclusive Seahawks content via the official Seahawks mobile app, when L.O.B.s were sipping lattes inside a Starbucks location. The baristas’ shirts were pretty cool, too. 

Image source: Starbucks

Image source: Starbucks

Here in Jet City, both Delta (the team’s official airline partner) and Seattle-based Alaska Airlines want to be known as the Seahawks' biggest supporters. Personally, I like the local guys. At Alaska Airlines, Russell Wilson is the carrier’s Chief Football Officer. Anyone flying from Seattle wearing a #3 Hawks jersey gets to board their flight early. #GoHawks.

Speaking of travel, Expedia employees created an amazing 10-story shrine to Beast Mode completely out of construction paper displayed in the windows at HQ.

Image source: MyNorthwest/Dara  Khosrowhshahi

Image source: MyNorthwest/Dara Khosrowhshahi

Around here, when a brand or businesses uses its building to pay tribute to the team, we call that #Hawkitechture. Go ahead. Scroll through the #Hawkitechture hash tag on Instagram. I’ll wait here. It might take a while. There are just sooooo many. 

When it comes to personal branding, we at Curator have to tip our hats to the #12Pets. Some of those pets have an amazing content strategy. We can't decide who is more creative — @barkleysircharles and his 306K Instagram followers or @Meowshawn_Lynch and his 2,500 Twitter followers. 

You may have heard that recreational marijuana is legal here. We wondered if an industry so young would be ready to jump into the action. Sure enough! A hard-working marijuana dispensary is working round the clock to roll 12,000 joints in honor of the big game. This special Seahawks blend is marketed as the 12th Pack. 

But don’t worry. If that kind of green isn’t your thing, area grocers can hook you up with some fan-friendly organic produce. 

One final note from our local mythical creature brand, Sasquatch. He has made the most mesmerizing 12th Vine. Seriously. I challenge you to look away. 

With that, we’ll hand it over to you, Boston. We’re waiting to be impressed by your marketers' Patriot Pride. 

Beat Your Summertime Sadness

Cue the Lana Del Rey song; summer is almost over. Lucky for us Seattleites though, we still have at least another month of beautiful weather, daylight and warm(ish) weather. Here are some of the things I plan to squeeze in before autumn officially arrives (on September 23).

Watch a sports game outside. If the forecast holds true, we may get some more sunny days, so take advantage and soak it up while watching your favorite local teams play, or find an outdoor bar to watch a little pigskin. I’ve said it here before, and I’ll say it again: The Dock in Fremont is an awesome locale to do just that. Get there a couple hours ahead of kickoff, especially for a Hawks game, to stake out a spot in the back patio. 

Go for a hike. I know when the weather changes I’ll be kicking myself for not going on more hikes this summer. Get some trail inspiration on Sosh Seattle!

Take a day trip. Another thing I always want to do each summer, and need to cross off my list in the coming weeks. Catch a ferry to spend the say exploring Whidbey Island, or check out a seaplane tour up to Victoria. Seattle Met has a pretty cool list from a few years back that may help you decide on a place to go based on your interests – all should be within 90 minutes from the city.

Staycation. On the flipside of going somewhere for the day or weekend, you can always stay right here and play a visitor in your own city. I did this by accident a few weeks back and loved it. For most of us at Curator, the fall season means holiday craziness is upon us, so unplugging for a day or two and getting out and about in your own neighborhood or city is a great way to de-stress and refresh your mind. Whether you take a long walk around Greenlake or Alki Beach, or tap your tourist roots and visit the Space Needle, or Ride the Duck, it feels good to explore what’s always right under your nose.

Picnic. Pack some snacks, maybe some drinks, and enjoy a nice long afternoon or sunset outside. Golden Gardens never disappoints!

Try something new. There are so many activities to try here in Seattle, and there’s still time! Rent a paddle board or kayak on Lake Union or Lake Washington (Moss Bay is a great spot), find a friend with a boat or rent one and give wakeboarding a try, or head east and try hang-gliding at Poo Poo Point in Isssaquah. I think this is the appropriate time to say YOLO!

Eat Out(side). Before everyone goes back to hibernating when the days get shorter and darker, eat outside as much as possible! There are too many amazing restaurants with gorgeous views, romantic rooftops, or beautifully lit patios to pass up. Get your perfect city Instagram from these locale eateries: Ivar’s or Little Water Cantina on Lake Union, Maximilien in Pike Place Market or Salty’s on Alki Beach.

Share your favorite summer activities with us @CuratorPR

Seattle Does the World Cup

Having never played soccer I don’t think I even knew what the World Cup was until college, when it gave everyone an excuse to continuously go out to watch the matches. I only caught some of the last World Cup, mainly because the games would show on TV in the middle of the night thanks to the time difference between here and South Africa. But this time around it’s been a lot of fun to keep up with and feels like more and more people are talking about it (or maybe that’s because social media has grown exponentially since 2010). Either way, I love any excuse to check out a new bar or get together at the same old watering holes with friends to watch. Here’s a roundup of some of Seattle’s best bars to catch a game (or five):

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Fremont Dock. A new favorite of mine, The Dock has loads of TVs inside, but the best is the huge screen in the outdoor seating area. Did I mention their festive pitchers?

Atlantic CrossingA pub onRoosevelt Way, this place has TVs outside and inside and the bar opens at 8am, so you can even enjoy those 9am matches with a drink in hand!

Paddy Coyne'sA South Lake Union Irish pub known for being home to lots of Sounders FC fans, will be open for every game on the World Cup schedule.

Kangaroo and KiwiBallard’s Australian-flared bar also opens at 8am, and will be offering beer towers and breakfast sandwich specials to the menu. This is another great spot if you want to watch the games in an outdoor beer garden!

Processed with Rookie

Von TrappsA Capitol Hill hotspot, this German beer hall has recently opened an outdoor Biergarten, complete with 4 TVs and a bocce lane. Get there early as seating is first come, first serve.

Buckley’s. Located in Belltown and Queen Anne, these sports bars are opening early to show all the World Cup games. The Belltown location will be showing the matches on 24 TVs and might add additional screens outside weather permitting.

F.X. McRory’sOur downstairs neighbors here in Pioneer Square, F.X. has been going all out for the World Cup – opening early and offering special breakfast sandwiches for those diehard fans.

Kells Irish Restaurant & PubLocated near Pike Place Market in Post Alley, this Irish pub is a great place to watch soccer. They’ll also be opening early for the matches and adding breakfast menu items.

Beveridge Place PubFor our West Seattleites, don’t worry, there’s a great spot out there to catch the games, too! Beveridge will be opening at noon during the group stages of the World Cup and early for Thursday’s USA match against Germany (9am). They’ll also be bringing out a big projector to screen the championship game!

For those live tweeting during the matches, remember that Twitter rolled out a fun feature called hashflags, -- when you hashtag the county code, it will automatically turn into an emoticon of the country flag!

If you have other suggestions for local World Cup viewings, holler at me @c_allodi

Sold on Seattle

photo[1] When I first moved down to L.A., I swore I would never again be a Washington resident. Six years later I broke that promise and moved back to Seattle. Returning in time for summer was a perfect transition, and I was convinced it was a great decision to come back. It also helped that I began working at Curator, and unlike most of my L.A. friends, was able to say that I loved my job.

Fall was equally as beautiful as the summer months, but then we set the clocks back and the dark coldness that is Pacific Northwest winter set in. I can handle the rain, and even the cold given the right down jacket of course, but the light is what I missed most. Those were some tough months, but thanks to the crazy holiday retail season, I kept too busy to really agonize over my lack of vitamin D.

What also helped was using the bad weather as an excuse to explore new parts of the city, checking out various restaurants, concert venues and even revisiting some of the tourist spots that I hadn’t been to since I was a kid. I realized that even though I’m “from here” I really had to relearn the city, and once I started doing that it felt like I was actually in a whole new place rather than moving “back home.” I’m now one of Seattle’s biggest fans and am slowly turning every visitor I host into one, too. It will be two years back this June, and I still feel like there’s so much I haven’t done and seen, but here are some of the things I’ve come to love about being a Seattleite:

St. Lucia at Sasquatch! Launch Party

 

The Music. An avid concertgoer, being in a music hub has been incredible. It’s been such an amazing surprise to find so many people here that share this passion and are always up for a random midweek show at some hole-in-the-wall venue. Because there are always so many shows happening around the city, I’ve found myself not just waiting to see my favorite artists, but rather exploring local bands and music genres I might have never thought to check out before.

The Food. I never knew Seattle was such a foodie city until I started eating my way through town. I thought LA had good sushi, but I’ve got to say Seattle might have them beat. I could eat at Umi in Belltown and Moshi Moshi in Ballard everyday. And holy pretzels! I don’t think I will ever get tired of enjoying a cold beer accompanied by a fresh pretzel and of course the amazing array of dipping sauces (the best part) at Brave Horse Tavern or Von Trapps. Hungry just thinking about it.

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The Drinks. I’ve always been a big brunch fan, but these days it feels like I’m more of a happy hour person. Megan wrote a couple weeks ago about the great new app, Sosh, and let me vouch for it again; this is a killer resource for finding the best happy hour spots (and more) around town. And I would be remiss if I didn't mention one of the best perks of being a Washingtonian: the wine. I frequent Woodinville to go wine tasting more than I should admit, but how can you not take advantage of all the incredible wineries that are right at our fingertips! And did I mention most of them are dog friendly?

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The Seahawks. It wouldn’t be right to make this list without including our Super Bowl champs! I forgot how much I love professional football. Living in L.A., I settled for college football (Go Trojans!) and really only paid attention to playoff games and of course the Super Bowl. But being able to go to the games and even just be in the city during the season is such a fun experience. While I miss basketball and hockey, I have to say that football season in Seattle takes the cake.

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The Art. I’ve always loved street art. That was one of my favorite things about living so close to Venice Beach. There was something so cool about discovering new aerosol art around the city. But the more I look around Seattle, the more I see that here, too. I was just at Pike Place Market over the weekend and realized that every time I’m there I find something new.

The People. It really is true that people here have a friendliness about them that’s I think, pretty rare. At first I had some moments of road rage when someone would signal and take their sweet time to get over in traffic, and maybe still do sometimes, but I’d take that any day over the always hurried pace of other cities (traffic-related and in general). I think Seattle is unique in that as a whole the people are hardworking, but they also know how to enjoy. They enjoy their work and play, and I think that’s what makes the character of the city so kind. It’s refreshing to be around, and everyone that has visited me has commented on this so I know it’s not just me who’s noticed.

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The Landscape. I’m not going to lie; I do really miss the beach. And I know technically Washington has beaches too, but nothing beats driving up the PCH from Manhattan Beach to Malibu. You just can’t. That said, I love that Seattle is surrounded by water. Growing up on the lake and then living by the beach has definitely cemented my need to always live near a body of water. There’s something so beautiful about it no matter the season. On top of that, being able to drive 20 minutes and find yourself on a hiking path up a mountain is amazing. Few cities provide the option to live in urban bliss, but offer that rural escape within minutes.

Got any Seattle must-do, must-see, must-try recommendations? Please send them my way at @c_allodi.

Why You Need To Be Using Sosh

I recently moved from the Eastside to downtown Seattle. And, lucky for me, I live with two really adventurous out-of-state roommates, which means I get to re-discover Seattle, block by block. I'm seeing the city through new eyes. Recently, some fellow Curators told me about Sosh. It's actually both an app and website for discovering everything from your new favorite happy hour or corner cafe, to local events curated around your specific tastes. Currently operating for San Francisco, New York and Seattle (with more cities coming soon), Sosh serves you up a perfectly planned social calendar, and you only have to do the things you want, and have time for. Let's face it. We're all busy, but in our free time we deserve to spend it doing something we truly enjoy. The picture below shows a sample calendar of activities Sosh thinks I'd be interested in (and for the most part, I am. See how that works?)

Tulip arrangement class? Sign me up!

The best thing about Sosh is it's so intuitive. It's addicting, and uber useful. Have friends coming in town? Don't stress. Need a place to meet an old friends after work? Sosh it. It's easy to use, too. Just create an account (I signed in with Facebook so I can connect with other friends using the service), then, click on the categories, activities and neighborhoods you're interested in (brunch, nature appreciation, food trucks & pop ups, concerts, theaters & shows; Greenlake, Eastlake, Queen Anne, Ballard, Capitol Hill.) As you browse the suggestions you can bookmark activities or add a tip for other users.

Soon you'll have a suggested social calendar, brimming with ideas. I'm loving the Sosh Concierge. For example, one of my suggestions was to try out the new Nacho Borracho in Capitol Hill. The Sosh Concierge tells me,

"Nacho: a delicious, cheesy, perfect-for-late-night snack. Borracho: the Spanish word for "drunk". From the owners of Montana comes a hotspot where boozy slushies (think frozen avocado margaritas), tequila cocktails, and a "Wa-Mex" menu create the perfect storm to take on Broadway's bar scene."

Plus, there's the Sosh Insider, which gives you tips on the "Must Try" menu item. It's like having that friend who always knows the under-the-radar hot spot and the one thing you can't miss there.

I could go on and on about this brilliant service, but instead, just log on to Sosh and try it for yourself. Maybe I'll see you at the next Dim Sum cooking class or Beecher's wine and cheese happy hour!

Curator News Feed: June 7, 2013

What you can learn from our favorite reads this week? Well, you can find out how to properly take your throwback Thursday Instagram photo, discover the best places to eat in Seattle and have your mind blown over a new hybrid pastry, to name a few. Read on to see what else the team was reading and talking about this week!

Where to Eat in Seattle Now, Four Seasons Magazine. Last year we had the pleasure of working with the Four Seasons Hotel in Vancouver BC for a wine tasting event. Since that time, I’ve received a weekly email, which shares travel content from Four Seasons Magazine. I find that the brand does a beautiful job curating content that offers just the right blend of practical and inspiring information. The “Concierge Recommends” feature always feels like I’m learning a bit of secret insider information. Today’s email contained this piece on “Where to Eat in Seattle Now.” Perfect timing as I make my plans for the weekend. Spinasse for pasta? Don’t mind if I do. – Ann Marie

Where Did Throwback Thursday Come From, Digital Trends. If you keep posting selfies from 12 hours ago and adorning them with the #tbt hashtag, people are going to call you out. Here's how to throwback Thursday like a pro! – Brooke

Photojournalist John H. White on Layoffs 35 Years at Chicago Sun-Times, Marketplace. Last week, the Chicago Sun-Times announced that it was laying off its entire photo department and, instead, would be training its reporters to capture images for their stories via iPhones. While I understand cost-saving measures, photojournalists simply cannot be matched by a smartphone, no matter how many automatic Instagram filters you put on a pic. The quality, the emotion and the depth that a professional adds to a story just can’t be beat. I mean, what would have happened if the Sun-Times went the other direction and laid off all of its reporters and said they’d simply train their photographers to write a some copy?…I mean a picture IS worth 1,000 words. – Dan

Beyond Flat: Six iOS 7 Fixes Apple Needs To Make, Gizmodo. Based on rumors over the past several months, it sounds like Apple is gearing up for a pretty dramatic redesign of iOS, its mobile operating system, with the release of iOS 7. A lot of those rumors have focused on a shift to "flat" design — getting rid of designs that imitate real-world objects (e.g. the yellow-legal-pad look of the Notes native app) in favor of clean, clear typographic representations. Kelsey Campbell-Dollaghan, writing for Gizmodo, says that Apple should take it beyond just looks: "Flatness, deep down, is really just a call for designers to think harder about how they use the space of the screen…. [It] isn’t really about sharp corners or shadows—it’s about purity of function." I think Apple needs to hire her. – Paul

Obama's Speechwriter/Stand-Up Comedian Gives a Graduation Speech. Not Surprisingly, It's Badass. UpWorthy.com. Yes, I'm sharing another graduation speech. The title explains what I would say about it—it's badass. Happy Friday! – Maria

7 Types of Facebook Fans, All Facebook. An interesting Infographic on AllFacebook.com. My favorite advice: Don’t feed the troll. It also shares a nice reminder to reward our truly loyal Facebook fans. Since “45% of consumers are more likely to share negative experiences on social media,” we want to make sure we engage with and keep the good ones when we can! Worth a look when you have a few minutes. – Annie

Everything You Need to Know About the Cronut, The Week. In honor of National Doughnut Day and because I’m also a sucker for croissants, it feels only right to share this miraculous new treat – the Cronut. If anyone is in NYC and can send me one (or five) I will be forever grateful! – Chelsey  

The Curator News Feed: March 15, 2013

Do you have a favorite story or article from this week? Here are some of ours! Happy Friday!

Mariners 2013 Commericals, Seattle Mariners/MLB.com. Baseball is a game rooted in the past and in tradition and it wouldn't be the start of another Mariners season in Seattle without the launch of their annual commercial campaign. Any other fans out there secretly hoping for King Felix's High Heat Hot Sauce giveaway night? – Jennifer

March Madness Productivity Loss? It’s a Slam Dunk, Poll Says, LA Times. Only a few days away to the kick-off of March Madness! Great thing for most of us, but maybe not so much for companies. A recent poll claims that the basketball tournament will cost U.S. companies $134 million due to productivity loss. According to this article, being able to live stream from nearly any device these days isn’t such a good thing, leading to not only distracted employees, but also slower Internet speeds. I guess it’s a good thing I’m more of a football fan. – Annie

The Seven People You Need to Succeed in Business Today, Forbes. An older story, but one I love referring back to. Which of the seven are you? And are there projects in your organization that are stalled because one of the seven is missing? – Dan

Google Experiment Takes Movie Trailers to the Next Interactive Level, Mashable. I can’t say that I’ve been excited, or even interested in, seeing Disney’s new Oz the Great and Powerful, but this Google Chrome experiment may have changed my mind. Take a look, and as you’re wandering around this immersive world, try to remind yourself that you’re using a browser, not $50 of downloaded software. The implications for web developers are huge, and this experience may well be a foreshadowing of what everything from movie trailer, musician and even hotel and real estate websites will look like in the near future. – Matthew

Powering Down Google Reader, The Official Google Reader Blog. The one subscription that won't make it into whatever RSS reader I switch to? That blog. But seriously, it's an out-of-the-blue move that, at least in my social feeds on Wednesday, was almost universally received with negativity. I asked for alternatives in a Google+ comment thread, and one person replied, "there's literally nothing else that's any good." Ugh. We'll let you know here on the Curator blog if we find anything particularly likable. – Paul

Wearable Computing: How Technology will soon be Stitched into our Lives, GeekWire. Artefact, a Seattle-based company, developed a prototype for a Pilates shirt called Move. It has stretch-and-bend sensors that can send data in real time to reflect movement and improve performance. It's viewable via web app. This is no dry-fit UnderArmor "advanced technology" folks. They're not planning to release to the public anytime soon, but my mind is spinning at the possibilities. Professional athletes. Learning a new sport or activity. Calorie burn optimization. Depleting Olympic score disputes. What I love most is the company's point-of-view on technology. "We shouldn't have to interact with the technology. It should interact with us." said a designer for the company. Overall, this idea rocks. I wonder if they need test models. Who's with me? – Maria

The New Rain Shadow Meats Location is Imminent March 2013, Seattle Met. Everything about this article—and the fact that each of the new restaurants they talk about are a 45 second walk from Curator HQ—makes me happy. – Scott

25 Clever Twitter Keyboard Shortcuts, Mashable. Everyone loves a good shortcut! These are also located on Twitter’s webpage, but I found this alphabetical/visual presentation to be really easy to digest. – Chelsey