Work / Sunbrella Marine

Charting a course
for success.


Keeping Sunbrella’s position as the No. 1 marine fabric in the world means continually finding methods for engaging the marine community in new and deeper ways. To meet this challenge, we moved beyond addressing the fabric’s legendary performance, design and aesthetics to connect with target audiences’ emotions through their passion for life on the water.

The Idea

As a result of our media team’s sponsorship negotiations with US Sailing Team Sperry, Sunbrella became the presenting sponsor of the World Sailing Cup Miami for 2015 and 2106, and Sunbrella’s branding was placed on the team’s boats, sails and apparel. This connection provided the opportunity to tell the elite athletes’ stories. Viewers were invited into the lives of 11 sailors, learning what it takes to compete at the highest level and what drives these athletes to sacrifice everything for a chance for a spot on the 2016 US Olympic and Paralympic sailing teams.

Digital Design & Development

We developed the platform’s structure and UX with two primary user personas in mind: those who wanted to view high-level content and engage with the sailing team as a whole, and those who wanted to dive deeper into individual athlete stories and explore their personal journey to the Olympic stage. The site was designed and built with a “mobile-first” philosophy, and the content was progressively enhanced based on a user’s browser capabilities.


Content Marketing

An integrated mix of search optimization, public relations, social media, content discovery network and paid media tactics drove traffic to the website. In addition to viewing the athletes’ stories and learning about US Sailing Team Sperry, they could learn about Sunbrella’s many benefits.

Facebook post
Twitter post

Online Advertising

The program targeted marine enthusiasts through a variety of online touch points. In 2015 and early 2016, we used Facebook advertising to launch the program. In April 2016, we extended our reach to include affluent sports enthusiast audiences with additional Facebook ads; Google Display ads; a banner advertising campaign on publication websites including Power & Motor Yacht, Yachting, Sail and Boat International, and others; and a paid content Discovery network program.

Print Advertising

Print advertising ran in category publications including Sail, Cruising World and Soundings Trade Only.


Uncharted Waters has provided Sunbrella with a new connection to its loyal marine audience and put it in front of new audiences primed to embrace the brand. Results are expected to peak with the launch of the paid digital program and the documentary in summer 2016, but from August 2015 until March 2016, the website – promoted by one paid Facebook campaign; organic and promoted social media posts; and organic traffic – had more than 75,000 visits and more than 85,579 video views. The six-week social media campaign generated 1,523,187 impressions. During that period, the site also ranked among the top 10 websites for referral traffic to

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