It has been a huge, continued whirlwind of massive action, opportunity, and excitement as VP Sales for Limbic Media. Above is one of our recent installations at the Summer X Games. ESPN loves us and wants to continue to evolve the dome year after year for both the Summer and Winter X Games. It is an example of how good the team has become.
There is so much to talk about, so much has happened. I could write volumes. The upcoming contracts for this Fall are phenomenal and are going to catapult us into a profitable stratosphere for 2020. It is arguably one of the most exciting things I have ever worked on. Deals are being closed with cities and property developers all over the US and into Europe. I have activations happening from Manhattan to Vegas. I absolutely love what I am doing. Placemaking is a huge passion.
At the same time as all of the excitement, it has also been one of the most challenging things that I have ever done. I don’t think that there has ever been a time in my life where I have accelerated my learning so rapidly.
20 Jun, 2019
by Jake Comments Off on Intersection of Passion
Above is a short video and testimonial from my good friend and exceptional circus artist, Kaelyn Schmitt. Below is a sales letter for the VP Creative of Cirque du Soleil.
It would be a dream come true to be able to work with Cirque in an artistic capacity. As an entrepreneur and circus artist, I am in a unique position to offer a truly imaginative and heartfelt offer to one of my favorite organizations in the world. It is a pleasure…
Dear Cirque du Soleil,
The reason that I am writing to you is because of a deep passion and love for circus. I genuinely want to contribute to further the art form.
Ever since my old friend, Mitch Head, introduced me to the world of Cirque du Soleil when he was performing in Saltimbanco many years ago, I have been enraptured by circus. Indeed, it has been my daily practice for over 16 years now (and counting – I will never stop).
I am also an entrepreneur. I enjoy building businesses from scratch. At the moment, I am the VP Sales for Limbic Media, a creative engineering firm. We are the best in the world at sound to light mapping which allows us to create interactive, high tech, public art experiences.
My passions are intersecting. I have recently been working with my good friend, Kaelyn Schmitt, Director of Ignio Circus. I was in her production last year called “Eyes Up” and I was able to bring Limbic Media’s technology to her latest project, “Bend or Break”.
I have many ideas for you. Please give me a chance to prove to you that we can be one of your innovative collaborators in the field. It does not have to be on stage. Indeed, I recommend that we start in the concession. We can provide an interactive, multisensory exhibit that will engage your patrons during intermission.
For example, we can create a Singing Tree like structure in the Grand Chapiteau entrance that guests can sing to. Or one of the musicians can come out to play the tree structure during the break. Or both. Of course, we would follow your lead on sculpture design. You are the masters. It would be a pleasure to collaborate with you on such a piece.
It elevates the Cirque du Soleil brand even further through creating even more memories. As you know, participatory experiences drive longer and deeper relationships. Real emotion creates an authentic connection. By providing personalized experiences via our technology, you are driving lifetime value of your fans.
Please give us a shot. I am confident that you will appreciate what we can do for you. Perhaps the greatest benefit is that our technology, Aurora, is a platform to build off of. We can continuously evolve the interactive paradigm. We can keep it fresh year after year. It is not a one trick pony. Again, I have many innovative ideas that I think you will appreciate. For example, how about using Hex suit data to display the acrobat’s bios in real time via an artistic representation in the lights on stage?
As a VP Sales, I have clear strategies for growing a business. I usually never hope when it comes to deal making. “Hope” is not a strategy. This is the only time where I have truly hoped that this can materialize. Personally, this would be exceptionally rewarding. Could we please schedule a brief, 20 min exploratory meeting in the next 1-3 weeks?
Thank you for your consideration. If there is anything you need, please let me know – I am at your service.
19 Jun, 2019
by Jake Comments Off on “Product of the Year”
I have been doing streets shows for over 12 years. It has taught me a lot about people, sales, and negotiation.
Gathering a crowd. It is not easy. Stopping people who do not necessarily want to be stopped is tough. It requires the ability to make people wonder and trust immediately. This has thoroughly helped me open doors to huge clients. I know how to get attention and make it count.
Rejection. Oh man. When I first started, I was awful. There were 1000 reasons to stop going. I actually did for 2 years. I found the rejection so hard. The streets can be raw. But then I got tough. Really tough. It is essential to have a “walk” attitude. It is counter intuitive, but when I don’t care if people stop to watch, I get more people. It has totally helped me as I now negotiate large deals. I go in there with, “I can walk on this deal attitude” (I only want it, don’t need it).
Body language speaks volumes. Half of how we communicate to our fellow human beings is non-verbal. In the martial art, Aikido, there is an opening stance where you are totally physically open, yet firmly rooted into the ground. When I get to the performing spot, I just do this right in the middle of the pitch and people cannot ignore it. I have tested this countless times. This has massively helped me in my business presentations.
Remain calm when it is all going wrong. I have had big failures on stage with hundreds of people watching. I just could not get my nerves in line. It is critical to do everything relaxed. Do everything relaxed – no matter what.
Keeping them focused. There are so many distractions on the street. Not only the physical environment, but people’s schedules. It is absolutely vital to have a flow to the proceedings. I am fully prepared yet totally flexible to improvise. Be like water. This has helped weave journeys for my clients and the deals that we put together.
Make it funny. I can walk into a giant ballroom and make it erupt into laughter. Comedy attracts, disarms, and engages people. It is what pulls people into my show. A crowd of people erupting in laughter attracts more crowds. Self-deprecation always works. People do business with people they like.
People skills. I am constantly practicing emotional intelligence. It is one of those things where I don’t think I will ever reach the destination. There is always something more to learn and deeper to go. I have had the opportunity to perform for thousands upon thousands of people. It has allowed me to engage nearly every walk of life and understand where people are coming from.
Improvisation. The streets are all about improv – especially when using participants from the audience. I am leading it, but what path it takes to get to the end is completely open. There are so many crossover skills from improvisational acting that I highly recommend all sales people take dozens of classes.
Impenetrable skin. The streets are tough. The rejection is brutal. It has made me impervious. I can cold call anyone on this planet.
Get Paid. Again, street shows are tough. I need to stop people who don’t necessarily want to be stopped, hold them for 40 minutes, and then get them to pay me. I get paid. I close deals.
All of this has 100% helped me become an excellent business man.
13 Feb, 2019
by Jake Comments Off on Experiential Marketing
Creative, meaningful experiences are hard to forget. Music is one of the things that connects us all. It has been an absolute pleasure developing these experiences for cities throughout North America and Europe (above video is in Chomutov, Czech Republic).
I have been helping to create participatory experiences that drive deeper human connections. In a public space, when people are having fun, they want to stay and play longer. This is good for the community and has a significant impact on business. Lighting always enhances the experience and transforms the space.
Our Aurora technology is the most powerful machine in the world at analyzing sound. It will give you a light show in real time to whatever you want to sing to it. This makes for totally personalized experiences. I am proud that I have been able to do this for humanity. I have made another dent in the universe.
From a business development/marketing standpoint, I have been able to help businesses by:
Driving Lifetime Value
And Turning Spaces into Places
12 Feb, 2019
by Jake Comments Off on What I have accomplished at Limbic Media Part 2
Usually, I prefer to do annual summaries of skills learned, but I have accelerated so quickly at Limbic Media, that I have to do one at six months.
Of course, I have continued to increase the skills that I mentioned in Part 1. Indeed, at a lightening pace. Necessity is the mother of invention. Limbic Media is in a tight spot, as most start-ups are, and I am doing four people’s work.
I always love creating something from nothing. Art and money are two of my particular favorites to make. At Limbic Media, I get to do both.
But the pressure is most certainly on. Here are more skills that I have learned, developed and/or honed in the last 6 months:
Increased Marketing capabilities. We have been running on a business development skeleton crew. I have been directly involved in pushing campaigns forward and securing qualified leads.
Engaged in Experiential Marketing campaigns creating unique, memorable installations that turn spaces into places for property management firms.
Clearly defined Limbic Media’s verticals crystallizing the company’s direction and revenue.
Negotiated Strategic partnerships with larger companies. Accelerated ability to demonstrate exceptional value immediately.
A Top Rainmaker. Further developed excellent closing skills.
Ability to attract investment and promote the company’s interests.
Elevated ability to stuff the top of the funnel – indefatigable at gathering leads and potential clients.
Directly involved in streamlining the business for maximum effectiveness – Operations, Sales, Development, and Executive.
Contributed to outlining and detailing a clear product sales process building an end to end campaign that is currently being executed.
Directly involved in creating new products and designs with clients; From Fortune 500, to the Entertainment Industry, to North American cities.
Expanded persuasive abilities through research and practice with clients. Further increased already excellent public speaking skills.
Accelerated negotiation skills through research and daily practice with clients (strategy and tactics). Improved “blank-slating” of deals. No expectations. No assumptions. Just negotiate the best deal possible.
Re-evaluated and redefined what metrics are important to measure for the company.
Continued direct involvement in disrupting industries. For example, the entire holiday lighting industry in the US.
Furthered ability to structure large deals.
Spearheaded international business with China; currently negotiating deals with large Property Management firms.
Not too shabby for six months of work. I have so many irons in the fire at the moment; from giant partnerships with Goliath companies to small rural USA city’s holiday light shows.
Now in our second year with this product, it is so heartening for the team to see our recurring revenue kick in. Our clients are delighted with the ability of our platform to be able to scale and change every year forever.
The trouble is, I can see the end of our runway. Running an innovative hardware company is not easy. I am doing my best to hammer out the big deals to set us free. Our growth curve looks so positive.
10 Feb, 2019
by Jake Comments Off on Aurora Tunnel
It is always a pleasure to collaborate with highly talented individuals, like, Daniel MacPherson. He is the Technology Director of THEMUSEUM in Kitchener, ON, Canada. With our tech, Aurora, he was able to create this magnificent exhibit. I knew it was going to be good, but whoa…
…it really, really turned out good.
18 Jan, 2019
by Jake Comments Off on Elegant, Sophisticated, Interactive Installations.
This is one of my favorite installations that we do at Limbic Media. Utilizing powerful AI and machine learning, we have become the best in the world at sound to light mapping. That allows us to do all kinds of cool things.
We give anyone access to see their sounds immediately represented in light. Anyone can play a piano attached to our technology and sophisticated lighting design and get a light show in real time. Indeed, they can also fully control their own light show. Whether you can play chopsticks or are a concerto pianist (see above), you get immediate, multi-sensory engagement.
It is a beautiful installation. Interactive, immersive experiences are the future. No doubt about it. It keeps people coming back again and again.
Our work at Limbic is leading us into some absolutely fascinating projects. More video coming soon…
4 Dec, 2018
by Jake Comments Off on Parks Canada Bison Roam Free
Here is a little clip of a unique project that we worked on recently for Parks Canada. This “Blinky Bison” has started its journey at the Calgary Zoo and will make its way around Banff National Park for years to celebrate bison being re-introduced back into the wild after being gone for over a hundred years. It is a cool project and cause. I was happy to be able to make high tech digital art and draw awareness to conservation in our national parks.