Building a Mini-Marketing Factory

By Jay Saenz / May 20, 2016



There will come a day when your office will be able to produce prototype of new products, packaging designs, marketing materials, and more—all in the same day your team concepts them. In fact, for many that day has already come to pass. Over the last few months we’ve been experimenting with a few of these new technologies. Of course, we’ve also been thinking about how our clients could use these new tools to create some unique marketing materials.

3D Scanning the Real World

A few weeks ago the front of our office was turned into a scene straight from a modern sci-fi film. There were large bright white lights everywhere and a single Kinect 360 sensor set in front of a small rotating chair. We were experimenting with a program called Skanect that allowed us to use Microsoft’s Kinect sensor to scan real-world objects into 3D environments quickly. 

Here is an example of one of our early tests, a 3D scan of Oliver Russell’s PR and Social Media Manager Kevin Winslow.

Kevin Wide

For our clients these types of off-the-shelf 3D scanning technologies mean we can easily integrate real-world objects into digital marketing materials including placement into virtual reality environments.

3D Printing

It seems like an affordable and reliable 3D printing solution is always just around the corner. Unfortunately, no one has delivered on that promise, and who can blame them? There are a lot of factors that go into creating a successful print; the fact that you can get fairly reliable prints for $600 dollars these days is pretty impressive.

We’ve been using the M3D Micro here in our office to experiment with a wide-variety of 3D models and 3D printing material. In fact we were able to take the 3D scan we made of Kevin and print it out as a simple bust.


Having in-house 3D printing capabilities means we can quickly prototype custom items for our clients. If they want to see what a custom mail piece is going to look like, we can 3D print it before our next meeting. 

Laser etching and molding

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  • We’ve yet to integrate laser 3D printing into the office, mainly because the first consumer product that has caught our eye, Glowforge, has yet to hit the market. Laser 3D printing is bound to open up a lot of new and interesting ways for us to get creative with client projects. Want to do a limited run direct marketing piece with custom laser engraved or laser cut packaging? No problem. Want to send a custom engraved computer to a high-profile client or YouTube celebrity? Products like Glowforge’s 3D Laser printer will allow us to do that in house and have it in the mail sooner than later.

    Along the same lines inexpensive solutions like FormBox, a desktop vacuum former, will allow agencies, creatives, and small businesses to quickly and easily create 3D formed objects and molds right from their desktops—allowing for small-scale productions of a variety of marketing materials.

    Creative Marketing Solutions

    The point of all these tools for Oliver Russell is creative freedom. It’s about freeing our creative team from the binds of traditional prototyping and allowing them to present clients with real-world examples of marketing materials during the early stages of a campaign.

    From 3D Printing to custom made packaging we are nearing the point where we can present clients with a near finished product on the same day we dream it up! This is an exciting time for creative thinkers and we can’t wait to see what our team and our clients dream up with these new tools. 

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    Thumbnails People Jay Saenz

    Jay Saenz

    Jay believes it's all about creating mutually beneficial relationships. With more than five years' experience in nonprofit development/underwriting and 13 years in direct sales, Jay specializes in finding the right match between an organization's purpose, audience and prospective partners. You won't mind taking his calls because his sales process is noticeably absent of slime—it's built on strategic collaboration, communication and teamwork.

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