I Live Lokai and Here’s Why

It’s early 2016. Chances are, if you live in a big city, you’ve met at least one person who has this bracelet:


What is it? It’s a Lokai. Both a new brand, and the official name of that brand’s bracelet, these guys are the talk of the town these days in the branding world and fashion communities alike. Lokai bracelets are comprised of clear rubber “beads,” with one white bead and one black bead on either end. The white bead contains a tiny drop of water from Mount Everest, the highest point on Earth, while the black one contains a bit of mud from the Dead Sea, our world’s lowest locale. The general idea behind this contrast is that we can use this bracelet as a reminder to stay hopeful in times of turmoil, but to also stay humble when we’re feeling unstoppably high. In fact, Lokai coined a simple, catchy tagline, “Stay Humble, Stay Hopeful,” which is a memorable and terse way of iterating their very simple, very meaningful message. Skeptical about the sourcing of the special beads? Not to worry, Lokai’s got you covered. On their official website, there’s an entire section dedicated to authenticity – you can see a series of breathtaking images and a video depicting a few sherpas’ trek up Everest to get just enough water for the bracelets (which is a lot of water, when thinking of the scale!).



What’s better is that Lokai releases limited edition bracelets every few months – there’s no method to their madness (that’s publically revealed, anyhow), and no way to know for sure when they’re releasing a new color, or how long it will be around. The best part, in addition to being able to add a physical variety to your collection, is that each limited edition bracelet goes to a worthy cause. In 2015 alone, Lokai had a camouflage bracelet for the World Wildlife Federation and a blue bracelet for charity: water (an organization dedicated to bringing clean drinking water to developing countries). They ended the year with a rather festive red bracelet for Save the Children (and hey, subliminally the Holiday season), and also had a pink bracelet for Susan J. Komen, the world’s largest breast cancer organization. Each special edition bracelet includes a partial donation to the chosen charity, and an even better reason to become part of the Lokai community, much like a charitable yet trendy business model before them from the Warby Parker’s and Tom’s shoes of the world.


Lokai has done everything right because they’re not just selling a rubber bracelet, they’re selling a lifestyle. Their Twitter handle is “Live Lokai,” as is their Facebook page and their hashtag. This hashtag hits on the most crucial way to appeal to a millenial audience – experiential marketing that makes you feel like you’re part of something bigger. Yes, Lokai is an $18 piece of rubber when you think about it from a hyper-rational perspective. But it’s also a symbol of a community. A group who embodies free-spirit and thrives on adventure. Lokai is symbolic of people who get excited by the prospect of new experiences, and live to share their stories with the world. From subtleties like, “Join the Lokai Circle,” as their chosen copy for a phrase more oft labeled, “Subscribe to our Newsletter,” to more obvious  ways to establish community, Lokai has worked hard to build a brand from the ground up (quite literally, Dead Sea, up!) and used social media to their advantage in doing so.

A lot of Lokai’s traction comes from Instagram – everyone loves a pretty photo, especially when it’s of some land unknown. We want to go there. We want to see that. It’s in every recent publication and all research points to the obvious – we want a life filled with new experiences. Forget about the days of new cars and fancy houses. Sure, that stuff is still cool, but you know what’s cooler? A spontaneous trip to the Galapagos Islands with 5 of our closest friends. Riding a camel through the Moroccan desert. Cage Diving with sharks in South Africa. Taking a Thai cooking class actually in Thailand. These are some of the new aspirations, and Lokai does an excellent job of hitting the nail on the head when it comes to marketing that desire. Their Instagram feed is full of foreign fantasy lands, beautiful images that look surreal when we see them on Google. We question the reality of photos like these, because of Photoshop and other picture enhancers that reshape the digital photography landscape and alter our sense of reality. But Lokai’s photos on Instagram include, of course, the Lokai bracelet – a way to ground a viewer and let them know that the images they see before them are in fact, quite real, and more times than not, they’re also user-generated. The Lokai community can click a chosen photo, which is always given credit, and find it’s photographer to be yet another fan, another traveler, another human being who lusts for adventure just like they do.


Their business model is brilliant. Simple. Smart. I live Lokai because I believe in their message, and I 100% embody their exact target audience. If you don’t yet live Lokai but like what you see, I definitely recommend checking them out!

Semester Switch: Different Blog

Hi Everyone!

Sorry I haven’t been blogging much. As it turns out, I’m enrolled in a course this semester that involves a lot of blogging. In Comm 3200: New Media and Society we report on the latest technological trends, new gadgets/gizmos, user generated content, social media, information laborers…a wide array of topics. Blogging has made the class even more interesting; with hundreds of students, I can read others’ responses to our weekly prompt, or I can also comment on their posts and start a newdiscussion. Here’s the link to my class blog for anyone who’s interested in reading: New Media, New Society. For the time being, that’ll be where I do most blogging.

Who are you and what are you doing here?

I just finished reading an essay for my writing class that I couldn’t leave unshared. There are so many great excerpts that I had difficulty picking just one for this post, but I highly recommend reading the whole piece if you have time. Mark Edmundson shares an honest view of the education system and the American work ethic that he coats with clever analogies and witty one-liners.

“Education is about finding out what form of work for you is close to being play—work you do so easily that it restores you as you go”

I couldn’t think of a better essay to start off my semester with the right attitude. If you’re interested in reading the rest, check it out here.

Internship 101

It’s that time of year again…..the internship hunt begins!

I’ve decided to share some tips on where I look for positions that catch my eye. My utmost favorite source (aside from personal networking) is Cornell’s own Job Search website (“CCNet” which is run through Experience.com). However, even after I’ve applied to whatever interests me on there..that’s not the end of the search!

Here’s some other useful places I look:

http://www.urbanintern.com  —lots in NYC!

http://www.internmatch.com —similar to above

http://www.craigslist.com –the personals are great once you weed through potential “fakes” or old posts. All results are local, and sometimes you can find positions on here that would be hard to search for on other sites (i.e. a PR Firm in Sag Harbor)

http://www.Twitter.com —yep! A lot of employers will tweet when they’re looking to hire. They often will hashtag “#internship” or #summerintern”…I’ve also found accounts dedicated to posting listings. I follow an account that posts Marketing/PR Jobs on Twitter. The issue with this is that it takes a bit of screening (through positions on the other side of the country and ones that require a lot of prior experience) but I’m sure there are even Twitter accounts for interns specifically. Browse and you shall find!

Even just perusing the web for companies you’re interested in working for is usually pretty helpful. That’s how I found out about a leadership conference at Unilever. They’re not looking for interns specifically, but you never know who you may meet at the conference! Look up the contact lists, send out emails..ask if they have any positions. Sometimes they do answer!

Best of luck on your search. Happy Holidays everyone!

Goodbye Fall Semester!

Though finals officially finished on Friday, and I’ve been home for 3 days, our grades came out today and I was very pleased with the results. I’ve always been one to say that GPA isn’t everything (which I do still believe), but it’s always nice to surpass any standards you set for yourself. This was my best semester at Cornell thus far. I thought about a Tweet—too arrogant. Thought about telling my friends, but for the ones who struggled this semester, that’d just be rude to rub in. So why not blog about it? For once, I earned straight A’s and had a GPA of 3.87! Definitely must’ve been a miracle. Or a mistake. Haha, no, in all seriousness, I attribute this semester’s success to a few things:

1) Enjoying all my classes. I took 3 comm classes and marketing, all of which interest me. In addition to strategically taking my required science elective pass/fail. (It’s not that I worked less at the class, it just made it that much less stressful for me to do well. But it was still a struggle nonetheless)

2) Learning time management. This semester I think I had it down to a science. Between research in the lab, studying for classes and extracurriculars, I learned how to allot my time pretty effectively. Instead of coming back to my sorority house around 2:30 when classes finished, I would go straight to the library until dinner time. No distractions = effective use of my time.

3) Still making time to have fun. Sometimes, I think that people forget extracurriculars aren’t simply “extra.” They should be things that you love doing. Things that teach you more about the world in a way that classes won’t. Things like writing for the magazine, or networking with other girls who want to enter the business world (btw that’s SWIB I’m talking about and they held a really useful resume critique one day). Things like going to Chipotle with the other girls in your sorority or going out on a Thursday night because you finished that term paper.

& 4)…last but not least… Being able to pat yourself on the back. I’ve always treaded on the side of modesty. No one likes a bragger. But lately I’ve realized that good things should be rewarded. Or at least recognized. I think creating this blog helped me see that I’ve been accomplishing so much at Cornell. I’ve done so many things here and taken advantage of this institution in ways that may not have been possible at a small university, or if I didn’t have that drive. So while I kid around about my GPA being a “mistake” it really is something I worked hard for. And you can too!

If I don’t write again soon, happy holidays to all. Here’s one of my favorite quotes to sum up this post:


Shannon Speaks: The 518 Movement – A Community’s Reaction to a Tragedy

“It started with the tweet, #TebowCallMatt….in less than two hours, people all across the country were tweeting it. The hashtag reached the 3rd most tweeted topic in the world.

via Shannon Speaks: The 518 Movement – A Community’s Reaction to a Tragedy.


This story is truly empowering. One of my best friends at Cornell went to Shenendehowa High School and knew of the victims of this tragedy. As Shannon said, our generation used social media to unite and rally for a cause. May the victims rest in peace and may those who have heard of the tragedy never stop tweeting, and never forget the horrors of drinking and driving.

I pledged to never drink and drive. The question is, have you?

Instagram hits the Interweb

Yes, I know, Instagram has been been on the web for a while now (just a few weeks, but in the Social Media world that’s old news). But a recent Mashable article got me thinking. Soon enough, Instagram will have badges that users can opt to post to their websites. That’s exciting news, but I can’t help but wonder..how did this all happen so fast? Through 3rd party websites like Webstagram and Statigram, we’ve been able to log onto our accounts from the Internet since as early as last spring. We were able to see our RSS feeds and like others’ photos…but now that Instagram has decided to establish a web presence personally, the once trendy iPhone app has fully hit the mainstream. Those 3rd party sites will soon be obsolete.

I remember the early days of Instagram. I downloaded it when it was still new to iTunes, thinking it’d be yet another picture-editing app that could perhaps help create more contrast or turn my pictures into sepia tone before I uploaded them to Facebook. Sure, it did all that. And more. I forgot about Instagram for almost a year, and when I went back on this past summer, I was surprised to find I had over 100 followers. Never did I think that people would begin to use this platform as its own entity. Some people post images on Instagram that don’t surface to Facebook now because they aim to please a different audience.

Now that Instagram has hit the Internet, all my pictures have gone public for the entire world to see. Sure, I can change my setting to private (don’t worry, there’s nothing to hide!) but that’s besides the point. “Public” in the sphere of the mobile world–the iPhone only world–versus “public” to anyone with access to the Internet yields some different audiences.

I can definitely understand why the company made the move to the Internet, but I can’t help but wonder what it’ll do to the business. For now, it’s not so different than when the 3rd party apps started giving us access to our images online. But, that’s not to say that someday things won’t change again. Will we soon be able to edit our pics from the web as well? At that point, it might as well become the next Picnik or Photoshop for Dummies. I still love Instagram, but I’m curious to see what you guys think on this one.

Research Lab Website is Up & Running!

A little late, but they always say “better late than never,” so here’s a post that’ll link you guys to the Cornell Group and Organizational Communication Lab‘s website. That’s the team that I’m a Research Assistant for and I absolutely love it!

My latest work at the lab? I’m working alongside Professor Poppy McLeod and a graduate student to co-author a paper on our latest topic within the realm of virtual world immersion. We are submitting the final draft on November 1st–so we’re in the final stages of production. This week is a mix of crazy—crazy weather at home (hope everyone on Long Island and in the TriState is safe..luckily Hurricane Sandy hasn’t hit Ithaca yet) and crazy writing workshop days where we’ve been working hard to finalize our draft for the The International Communication Association (ICA). The ICA selects from a pool of submissions to attend a conference every summer, and this year it’ll be held in London. As always, I’ll keep you updated on the status of our progress.

I’ll leave you with a screenshot of my bio on our Research Lab’s website. (Side note: I wrote the blurb in early August before I had an in-depth knowledge of what I’d be doing in the lab). Stay safe and inside, away from the storm, everyone!