Wall-to-wall creativity at a digital marketing agency
The ideas never stop flowing at VML, a digital marketing agency in Kansas City, Mo. Yet creativity is an unpredictable thing and great ideas have a way of popping up without warning, so the VML staff writes on just about every surface they can find. It could be a scrap of paper, a napkin, a candy wrapper or even a conference room wall. Fortunately, that wall wipes clean easily, because it’s covered in dry erase paint from MDC – a coating that turns any smooth surface into a dry erasable one.
VML Facilities Manager Paco Laclé was in the process of renovating the firm’s downtown Kansas City building when he heard about the dry erase paint from MDC, a leading U.S. source of commercial wall designs and coatings. VML had used another manufacturer’s dry erase paint at their main building, but they weren’t thrilled with the results because of the elbow grease required to keep it clean.
“We had to get it really wet before wiping it,” Laclé explains. “And if we didn’t clean it well enough, it started to ghost,” he continues, using a term that describes the faint images leftover when a dry erasable surface doesn’t perform as it should. Laclé decided to give MDC a try in the agency’s newly redesigned conference room.
It took one day to install it, and the result is a floor-to-ceiling brainstorm board that helps promote the free flow of ideas in an atmosphere of boundless creativity.
Laclé says the board cleans easily with the swipe of a dry cloth, and there are no residual images left behind. “We love it.”
The wall looks better, even when it’s blank.
According to Laclé, dry erase paint is a great alternative to costly whiteboards, because the wall looks better when it’s in use – and when it isn’t.
“If you install a whiteboard, you lose the whole wall. Dry erase paint is more functional and it looks better, because if you aren’t using the dry erase function on a particular day, you just clean it and you have a nice, shiny white wall,” Laclé says. Or not. VML artists are known to sketch designs on the wall, creating cool artwork on an ever-changing canvas.
They’re only just getting started
Laclé is considering other walls to coat with dry erase paint in VML’s refurbished space. It’s an older building with hardwood floors, great views and a lot of character. The bright white dry erase paint provides good contrast against the exposed brick walls and wood beams, but MDC also offers a clear coat that can be painted over any color, and Laclé says his firm may choose to go that route in other areas of their building.
“We have about 200 people working here, and all of them use the dry erase wall in their own way,” Laclé says. Whether it’s a writer, a web designer or a project manager, just about everyone has thoughts and ideas worthy of the wall. And at a time when many companies are looking to conserve resources, why waste paper when there’s a perfectly good wall at hand?