When you think of Chicago and the home of WOMM-U, quite a few iconic buildings and sculptures quickly come to mind. But one landmark in particular that has captured the minds and hearts of Chicago natives and visitors alike is the Bean.
It reflects the splendor that is the Chicago skyline. It plays tricks with the light and the sky. It is massive, giving it weight and importance. It is elegant, balanced on its ends without any color of its own. Finally, it is interactive, and lets the viewer become part of the art when they stand back and let the simple act of walking, turning, or even swaying change the visual presented by the sculpture.
Because of the way it bulges and looms over the viewer, people making faces in the stainless steel skin aren't having the private moment they might expect. Their gyrations are expanded, stretch, and displayed over a much greater surface area so that others can enjoy what would be merely a one-on-one experience in an ordinary carnival fun house mirror. But as has been established, this is no ordinary mirror. To some, it looks like a rift in the very fabric of space and time. Its combination of simplicity and elegance has allowed it to be embraced as a quirky mascot. A walk under its nine-foot-tall arch can be a mind-bending experience.
So why did WOMM-U choose to fashion its mascot after the iconic Chicago landmark? For starters, Chicago has been home to WOMM-U since the event began in 2007. Moreover, the intrinsic qualities, vision, and experience the Bean provides visitors is in many ways what WOMM-U emulates.
WOMM-U reflects the splendor that is the word of mouth and social media marketing landscape. It is a massive two-day program, giving WOMM and social media the weight and importance it deserves. It is elegant, balanced faculty coming from all reaches of the industry and without any agenda of selling their products or pushing their services. And finally, it is interactive, and lets attendees become part of the learning process or they can sit back and observe the serious knowledge and insights being dished out by the esteemed WOMM-U faculty.
Because of the breadth and depth of the content, WOMM-U looms over the attendees and they can’t help but share the case studies and thought leadership through social channels. As such, the reach and impact of the speakers goes beyond the classroom walls and reverberates throughout the entire industry.
Clearly, WOMM-U isn’t any ordinary conference and as such, it demands an equally unique mascot. When the bean was unveiled in July of 2004, it was derided by some as unimaginative. We suspect that we may run into some critics and naysayers as well. Some branded it "The Electric Kidney Bean." That "Bean" nickname stuck, and the public quickly changed its meaning from pejorative to loving, which we know will be the same exact case for the WOMM-U Bean.