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AV/IT Team: The Digital Canvas of Fame

Under Armour Prysm Systems Video Wall
(Image credit: Prysm Systems)

When you want to impress Michael Phelps, you must go all out. As a frequent visitor to Under Armour’s Baltimore headquarters, the most decorated Olympian of all time is very familiar with the global athletic performance brand’s spectacular Make You Famous Wall. “Without exception, everyone who sees the wall is amazed—the impact is immediate and dramatic,” remarked Kevin McDermond, program director for the company’s brand creative team.

The custom Prysm Systems visual workplace framed video wall measures 18 feet wide by 9 feet high, delivering over 160 square feet of pure digital excitement.

The concept for the wall was ideated by Under Armour’s founder and CEO, Kevin Plank. “When our campus was being remodeled, Kevin wanted one central location where we could bring an athlete on our roster—or one we were recruiting—to show them exactly how Under Armour is making them famous,” McDermond said. “The Prysm solution is a massive canvas where we can display a large variety of content to demonstrate how we’re telling their story, not just in Baltimore, but all over the world.”

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Global Visualization

One of the company’s tenured athletes recently visited his hometown of Baltimore and the wall. “Michael Phelps has an amazing personal story,” commented McDermond. “We brought him in and used the wall to graphically illustrate exactly how he’s being globally portrayed in our stores, on our social media channels, on our digital web banners, and in our commercial spots. The Prysm solution tells a powerful visual story by bringing digital content to life and expressing the commitment we have to sharing his story.”

AV/IT TEAM

Kevin McDermond, program director for Under Armour’s brand creative team.

(Image credit: Under Armour)

Kevin McDermond, program director for Under Armour’s brand creative team

The popularity of the Make You Famous Wall has enabled McDermond and his team to successfully choreograph each experience and ensure that every story strikes a personal chord. He elaborated, “The Prysm wall is an incredible story-telling tool that invokes emotion and enables us to deliver on the power of the brand. Each curated experience allows our brand to convey emotion in a very real way and our athletes immediately connect with us on a personal level. It’s not uncommon for our visitors to become completely immersed by the whole experience—it’s just so unique and impactful.”

Digital Storytelling

Each customized presentation follows a similar format. “The clarity and resolution make viewing the Prysm wall impressive on its own, but the ‘touch’ feature is one of the coolest parts of the whole visit,” McDermond added. “When we’re doing a presentation, we’ll zoom in on specific parts of the story, and then when we’re wrapping up, we’ll get the visitor to use the touch capability to actually sign the wall. We can then share a clip of the signing on social media to express our appreciation to the celebrity for stopping by. We keep a record to show subsequent visitors who have occupied the very same chair that they are sitting in, and it blows them away.”

A list of visitors to the wall reads like a who’s who of the world’s most famous athletes, entertainers, influencers, and business leaders. In addition to Michael Phelps, recent guests include Misty Copeland, Tom Brady, Stephen Curry, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Lindsey Vonn, Mark Wahlberg, as well as the key partners of the brand.

The Prysm wall is an incredible story-telling tool that invokes emotion and enables us to deliver on the power of the brand.” — Kevin McDermond, program director for Under Armour’s brand creative team

When there is no guest presentation, the wall displays a news feed of Under Armour athletes, game highlights, online product reviews, significant company announcements, marketing campaigns, and social media mentions. Under Armour employees, known as teammates, use the Prysm wall as one of their primary sources for all things Under Armour. McDermond stated, “The wall gives the space a real energy and is always in high-demand for meetings, as the Prysm solution really does add significantly to what gets accomplished.”

McDermond concluded, “We consider ourselves to be great story tellers and the Prysm wall is an incredible tool to help us deliver our message with passion and pride.”

The staff of AV Technology serves the community of decision-makers comprising AV/IT technology managers and directors, instructional technologists, and anyone making or influencing AV/IT technology decisions within their respective facilities and institutions.