The Awesome Marketing Idea that Wasn't

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Windward Unleashes the Green Graffiti Gremlin at JavaOne

The stencil for the environmentally friendly graffiti that Windward used at the JavaOne show in San Francisco. If this lesson learned doesn’t make you laugh, check out the cubiclewars video!

The stencil for the environmentally friendly graffiti that Windward used at the JavaOne show in San Francisco. If this lesson learned doesn’t make you laugh, check out the video!

We were excited for the debut of a unique advertising concept that none of us had ever tried before," said Windward founder and CTO David Thielen

Windward, the reporting, document generation and business intelligence experts, returned from Oracle's JavaOne show in San Francisco's Moscone Center this week with an innovative marketing campaign under their belt. The "Green Graffiti" campaign consisted of power washing a stencil on sidewalks; the stencil left behind an image and URL that drove Internet traffic to the popular Barats and Bereta Cubicle Wars video website.

"We were excited for the debut of a unique advertising concept that none of us had ever tried before," said Windward founder and CTO David Thielen. "JavaOne attendees would see the reverse graffiti, type the URL in their phones or tablets, and check us out."

The Windward marketing department dreamed up the layout and design. The company then hired San Francisco area metal cutters Marin Metals to cut the stencil and Clean Sweep, a San Francisco sweeping and pressure washing company, to lay down the green graffiti around Moscone Center.

The results, however, were not what Windward had hoped for. The sidewalks were already fairly clean and composed of black stone, so the graffiti was barely visible. In addition, the 6 a.m. power washing (a time chosen because the sidewalks would be fairly empty of foot traffic) disturbed nearby residents, so the pressure washers created fewer stencils than hoped for.

"We saw only a small fraction of the 10,000 visitors we hoped would go to the site, which was disappointing," Thielen said. "But we ended up knowing we could meet a new challenge and work incredibly hard as a team. That was an incredibly valuable takeaway from this experience."

To view the Cubicle Wars videos, please visit http://www.cubiclewars.net/.

About Windward
Windward offers business intelligence, enterprise reporting, document generation and Web-based business intelligence solutions. Launched in 2002, Windward is the only full-featured, robust Java and .NET engine to use Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint as a layout tool, putting template design and report and document generation power in the hands of the end user. Any Office user can easily and securely create reports and documents with almost no learning curve. Additionally, OEMs and VARs use Windward’s reporting component.

Windward works by merging any XML, SQL or custom data source—or any combination thereof—with a Microsoft Office report template. It feeds data into the template to create a what-you-see-is-what-you-get report or document that can be generated in DOCX, XLSX, PPTX, PDF, HTML, direct to printer, RTF, XLS, WordML, TXT, and CSV. Windward runs as a standalone application or in an enterprise computing environment. Also unique, Windward implements in hours, offers affordable server-based pricing, and offers “prompt, fantastic” technical support via a 24/7 support forum and support contracts. A free trial of Windward's products is available at http://www.windward.net.

The Windward user group spans 70 countries. User applications include financial statements, inventory reports, product-usage reports, purchase orders, invoices, training certificates, timesheets, and licenses. Other applications include reporting to meet requirements of Sarbanes-Oxley, Patriot Act, ARRA, HIPAA, Health Level Seven, IFRS, Gramm-Leach-Bliley, IFRS, Basel II, and other U.S. and international acts and accords affecting financial services, real estate, government, and insurance industries and the consultants and integrators serving them.

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Annette Grotz
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