Sculpt is a Social Media Agency Built for Change

Can we be honest? The barrier to being 'good' on social media is lower than ever. When founders and marketers sit down with our team they don't need someone to "do it for them." They need their content strategy to align with their brand strategy, not just paid strategy. They invested in community growth, and now it's not converting. They have channels sitting idle.

For some, social hasn't lived up to its promise of business growth. And that's where we come in.

Sculpt is a social media agency built for change. In a world where consumer expectations shift as fast as Facebook, Sculpt helps your brand story stay consistent and marketing keep pace.

We launched in 2012 with a goal to help the brands in our backyard connect with their human customers more humanly. Today, our community managers, digital strategists, and communication designers have become the extension of in-house marketers, startups, and creative teams nationwide.

Sculpt plays well with growth-stage startup and large organizations alike, with a knack for food/beverage, home/office, business services, technology, and entrepreneurial community brands. Marketing leaders inside brands like Allsteel, Build.com, Goodwill, and Revolution have counted on us to build audiences that care, share, and convert.

Millions of thumbs stop on our client's content each year, and our side projects have been used by hundreds of thousands of bloggers, founders, and marketers (see: startupstockphotos.com). If you too are looking to ignite a conversation between your customer and brand, slide your mouse over to [wearesculpt.com] now.

 

 
$5,000+
 
$100 - $149 / hr
 
10 - 49
 Founded
2012
Show all +
Iowa City, IA
Headquarters
  • Sculpt
    Sculpt 105 E College Street
    Iowa City, IA 52240
    United States
    707.728.5780

Portfolio

Key clients: 

Sculpt plays well with growth-stage startup and large organizations alike, with a strength for food/beverage, home/office, business services, technology, and entrepreneuerial community brands. Trusted by marketing leaders inside Allsteel, Build.com, Revolution (VC), MetaCommunications, Shive-Hattery, Goodwill, and during industry events like Adobe MAX, HOW Design Conf, NeoCon, Third Wave Book tour, EntreFest, and Land Expo. 

Reviews

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Social Media Strategy for Cider Producer

"They work with small businesses to promote them on a level that I’ve never seen before."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Less than $10,000
 
Aug. - Nov. 2016
Project summary: 

Sculpt applied their marketing skills to cultivate a dynamic social media presence for a craft cider producer, conveying a strong brand identity to complement a growing product line.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Iowa City, Iowa
Alex Kline
Marketing Manager, Wilson's Orchard Hard Cider
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

With Sculpt’s expertise, brand awareness and community interest in new products increased swiftly and broadly, as indicated by online analytics and consumer interactions. The team’s engaging demeanor, versatility, and coaching ensured long-term customer engagement.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I work for Wilson’s Orchard Hard Cider, a craft cider company in Iowa City, Iowa. We grow over 120 different varieties in our u-pick orchard, all chosen based on one simple criterion: great taste. The varieties we grow ripen from the beginning of August through October. In September 2015, Wilson’s Orchard began crafting our own hard cider with the same passion used to grow some of the best fruit in the Midwest.

As the marketing manager for the company, my role is to share our story with our Iowa customers and support our wholesalers in their efforts to promote and sell our products in retail and on-premise locations throughout the state. 

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Sculpt?

The main challenge we faced when entering our partnership with Sculpt was boosting awareness of our hard cider brand and building an engaged network of brand ambassadors in a community that wasn't knowledgeable about craft cider. While many in the Iowa City/Cedar Rapids area were familiar with our u-pick orchard, recognition of our hard cider products was relatively low.

With the release of our new packaging and our facility's growing capacity, building a social media presence for our hard cider flavors was a key aspect to encouraging sales and gaining new customers. We saw this as an opportunity to re-introduce ourselves to the market and to share our brand values and origin with our Wilson Orchard fans and craft beverage enthusiasts throughout the state. 

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Overall, the scope of their services for this project covered many aspects of digital marketing implementation, including content development and scheduling, theme design, photography, audience targeting and testing, advertisement placement and budgeting, and training and support for me, the in-house marketing manager.

Having Sculpt as a resource really helped us launch our hard cider social media pages on Facebook and Instagram and start to engage the community around our brand. They were very flexible with us and used an all-in-one approach. I was a little familiar with social media but not at all familiar with paid targeted advertising. They helped us fill the content calendar, build some themes, and make some very interesting content that shared our story. Beyond that, they helped us market that story to people who would be interested in learning more about our brand.

Sculpt was in charge of a lot of our advertising campaigns, as well as the graphic design templates. They did an amazing job of coaching me on how to continue their strategy after our agreement ended. They showed me what type of content works, walked me through what I had posted, and explained how I could make it better. If it worked well, they showed me why. They also provided me with easy paid targeting for audience groups. I could then curate the information they had developed and tested in order to implement it on my own.

How did you come to work with Sculpt?

We chose Sculpt as our digital strategy firm because of the versatility of their services provided and proven track record helping small businesses in similar markets. Their team was really easy to work with, and it was clear they were passionate about creating smart and valuable solutions. They were willing to be flexible with us and very hands-on with the coaching.

How much have you invested with Sculpt?

The entire four-month project was under $10,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We began our project with them in August of 2016 and wrapped it up at the end of November of that year. We’ve continued our partnership with them on a new project, which started in January of this year and will probably run through July. 

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or impact of the engagement?

Sculpt took us from zero to over 3,000 engaged followers. The reach for that was even farther—at times up to 12,000 people in our area. The growth on that was exponential for those four months. It’s tapered off since then, so it’s clear that their services were really targeted and effective. We’ve had people tell us how awesome our social media is and how they really enjoy our post updates. People really respond to some of the content we’ve been posting, both in person and in online engagement metrics. Their coaching continues to be a valuable tool for me.

Their direction has helped us speak to our customers directly, which has been especially helpful in sharing our story with the broader community and handling customer feedback and suggestions. For example, when we released our new packaging, we encountered numerous breakage issues. The original four-pack handle was not sturdy enough to hold four 12 oz. bottles. In addition to working with our distribution team and finding a new carrier manufacturer, we were able to address the issue and share our resolution with customers via social media.

How did Sculpt perform from a project management standpoint?

We had a relatively large team on both sides. There were three of us from Wilson’s Orchard Hard Cider; at any given point, we felt we had access to any of their team members. They had Alec doing online analytics. Emily was managing the project and keeping track of everything, and she can run a meeting like nobody I’ve ever seen before. In a room of eight people, she’s pretty commanding and awesome. We also had access to the graphic designer, their photographer, and several other key players on their team. From a project management standpoint, they’re really all hands on deck. They’ve very organized, effective, and easy to work with.

What did you find most impressive about Sculpt?

They did a great job of explaining why they’re doing what they’re doing. They work with small businesses to promote them on a level that I’ve never seen before. You can tell when Sculpt has their hands on a project. It’s very well done and looks professional, but it’s campy enough that you feel connected to a brand. We have a few people who don’t understand social media at all. Sculpt did an amazing job explaining how social media can help a small business, how it can share our story, and how we can define our target audience to get the results we need and promote sales.

Are there any areas Sculpt could improve?

We really enjoyed working with them, and I’ve learned a lot. I suppose one point of advice would be that if you’re going to engage in a coaching arrangement, really drill down and give a good understanding of what the advertising budget looks like, how the testing and targeting can be adjusted, and how to read those results. They’ve got a great staff that can do that for you, but when you’re moving into the independent work without them, it can be a bit of a head-spin. They did what they could to wean me onto that, but I guess I could have worked harder to use them as a resource while they were in a contract agreement. 

5.0
Overall Score I think they do a great job. I can’t wait to work with them again.
  • 4.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They were very prompt in delivering content themes and suggestions. Our project extended longer than anticipated, but they were understanding and flexible on finishing to ensure we ended well.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Their initial proposal was specific and accurate. It’s an investment to work with social media agencies, but we definitely saw results. We get good feedback every day from the community and our customers.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Their quality is phenomenal. It’s professional and stays true to the brand image in an interesting way. Every recommendation was well-thought-out.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    We really enjoyed working with their team and are moving forward with their services again for a new project.

Social Media Marketing for Community Nonprofit

"They really blew the doors off the engagement and turbo-charged our online presence through social media."

Quality: 
4.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
Jan. 2013 - Dec. 2016
Project summary: 

Sculpt directed all social media marketing efforts to promote online engagement for a local nonprofit organization, strategically using in-house content on channels like Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook.

The Reviewer
 
501-1,000 Employees
 
Iowa City, Iowa
Brent Watkins
Creative Services Manager, Goodwill of the Heartland
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Over the 3-year project, page likes on Facebook increased by nearly 8,000. Pinterest and Instagram followers also rose through Sculpt’s dedication to understanding the industry, meeting objectives, and conveying an appealing image. 

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

Goodwill of the Heartland is a nonprofit organization that is part of Goodwill International. We serve 19 counties in Southeast Iowa and Central Illinois. We have 17 retail stores and a significant mission services operation. Our mission is to help advance the social and economic wellbeing of people who face barriers to independence.

I’m the creative services manager. I work with our marketing team to handle digital media and traditional broadcast strategies. 

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Sculpt?

My duties continued to expand, as I was doing brand development, and we brought all our media production in-house. I needed to outsource our social media. We generate a lot of our own content, and we do extensive video storytelling, so we just needed someone who could survey the landscape of social networks out there and advise us on what we should do to craft our message. Our goal was to increase engagement in the social space, and we felt that Sculpt would be a good match to do that. 

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Sculpt directly managed our social media channels, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. Those were the primary areas where we wanted to see growth. They either provided the content themselves or pulled content from our marketing calendar. We would share our annual marketing strategic objectives with them. We met quarterly to review progress and goals, and they reported monthly on the performance metrics we were tracking. They really blew the doors off the engagement and turbo-charged our online presence through social media.

How did you come to work with Sculpt?

I became acquainted with Josh Krakauer, their owner and CEO, through a business networking event I attended every week. I got to know about their business, their experience, and their goals.

How much have you invested with Sculpt?

Our budget was $27,000 per year.

What is the status of this engagement?

We began working together in January of 2013. We ended our relationship with them in December of 2016 due to budget constraints. 

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or impact of the engagement?

We saw engagement go through the roof on Facebook. They turbo-charged our growth in terms of fan-page likes and overall engagement. We were early adopters of Pinterest, so they were right there with us in recognizing that was a good match. Pinterest is a very visual medium, and they really seized that opportunity. Instagram engagement also grew, but Facebook was the real success story. We started with about 1,200 fan-page likes and ended with over 9,000 in that three-year span.

Everyone in the organization was happy with their work and enjoyed the content that Sculpt created. They took the time to get to know our business, and they were really in tune with our objectives and the voice we were looking for in the social space.

How did Sculpt perform from a project management standpoint?

We didn’t have any specific campaign projects, but they were always where we needed them to be. Their communication was very good. They were very responsive and met all our organizational goals.

What did you find most impressive about Sculpt?

“Team” is the operative word. With a lot of social media agencies, you don’t know the scope of the team or the depth of manpower they bring to the table. With Sculpt, it was obvious they had a real depth of talent. It was a robust company that had a real depth of staff. People were dedicated to just the analytics portion, someone else just supervised the content, and another person managed our relationship as a client.

Are there any areas Sculpt could improve?

We put them in a difficult position. They were accustomed to generating the content and creating the online brand; however, we did that all internally. The only place we struggled was to carry forth the brand focus that we were highly attuned to because we created it. They were on the outside of that process, so they weren’t quite as brand-centric in our messaging as we would have liked. Those are difficulties we’ve faced with all of our outside marketing vendors. I think there was a bit of a disconnect there, but it didn’t really impact their performance. 

4.5
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They were always on time.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They provided over-the-top service.
  • 4.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    I mentioned a disconnect in terms of brand focus.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I’ll refer them without hesitation.

Market Research for Video Production Agency

"They’re some of the most knowledgeable and passionate people in what they do."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
Project summary: 

Sculpt initially conducted SEO and marketing strategy, but the scope expanded, as also they redesigned the old website. As an auxiliary service, they provided insights for a move into a new industry.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Client Account Manager, Rausch Productions
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Sculpt's efforts earned positive phone calls from customers. Their authenticity and responsiveness were impressive; they worked passionately to ensure that the project was completed. A feat that their client had never experienced before.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

Rausch Productions is a video production and live event production company based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Sculpt?

We were moving into an event management field and going through a rebrand while moving our physical location. Initially, we reached out to Sculpt to help with marketing strategy and SEO [search engine optimization]. Then it expanded to more customized projects such as revamping our website and helping us learn how to focus on the new industry we were breaking into.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We wanted to figure out how to break into our market as well as position ourselves in the state of Iowa as one of the lead event production companies. We did a lot of business nationwide, so we also wanted to see what that looked like in terms of our key customers. We wanted to find out how we target larger markets and what their behaviors were online and in response to marketing. We didn’t have a lot of external facing marketing, so we wanted Sculpt’s help to manage that and get those contacts. In terms of SEO, we did a lot of stuff on Facebook. They would provide verbiage for the ads they created for us. Then, they would revise them based on people’s behaviors, which was really beneficial to us because we didn’t have any of these skills in-house. They were very knowledgeable and added a lot of value to the process. In our meetings, they would go over the last month and make recommendations going forward.

Our website had been designed and built internally and needed to be updated to attract the market we were focused on. Sculpt did a complete revamping of our website. They guided the process of creating the design and the whole skeleton. They knew key things that we didn’t know which would help attract people to the site. We had a lot of video content and we wanted that to be shown on the site so that people could picture the events we do. We also wanted to be sure our employees, services, and key industries were highlighted. I wrote a lot of the content and there were times my contact from Sculpt would come to our location and sit down and help me write it.

How did you come to work with Sculpt?

I had heard about their company. I remember when I met Josh, their CEO, and he said who he worked for; I knew the company. He struck me as very knowledgeable and approachable. I knew he would give me the right answer and not the answer that would make more money. He had our best interest in mind through the entire process. We had a meeting with him and our executive staff; just hearing his ideas and feedback and the way he listened to what we had to say was very impressive.

I attended a large conference and Sculpt was the main marketing team there. They were on site doing all the social media and had a great community feel about them. They were great at what they did at that conference, which impressed me a lot.

How much have you invested with Sculpt?

We spent between $10,000 and $50,000 in total. The website project was much more intense than we thought but they didn’t increase the cost. They honored the initially contracted amount, which was impressive. It was a great price compared to other local agencies.

What is the status of this engagement?

The website project build took five months.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

We got phone calls that directly mentioned Sculpt’s efforts on our website and Facebook. Our customers loved the new website. All of our internal and external marketing efforts, including templates, mimicked the brand Sculpt set up for us.

How did Sculpt perform from a project management standpoint?

They always took care of us and we had good relationships with our project managers. They were responsive and genuine. It was like working with friends on our projects. They use a platform for task management, so we always knew what they were working on.

What did you find most impressive about Sculpt?

They’re some of the most knowledgeable and passionate people in what they do. That’s very rare. They work tirelessly to get a project done and they care about their clients.

Are there any areas Sculpt could improve?

No.

5.0
Overall Score They were great.
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    We met the deadline, but there were a few deadlines that were bumped out a little bit.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    The website was beautiful and everybody loved it.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I’d love to work with them again.