Spire Celebrates Lawyers, Lagers, and Lederhosen with Slacktoberfest

The Spire Agency (US) crafted an award-winning invitation for their client Slack Davis Sanger’s annual Slacktoberfest in a vibrant fusion of Texan yee-haw and German prost. With the creative talents of Mike Stopper and Alex Flores at the helm, the agency’s invitation captured the spirit of Austin’s legal community by swapping briefcases for beer steins and adding a blend of local flair and Oktoberfest cheer. The invitation led to an unprecedented response rate and a packed house at the Four Seasons Austin, earning Spire a Gold Award in Graphis Design 2024 celebrating their innovative approach.

By: Mike Stopper, Principal/EVP Client Service & Copywriter, and Alex Flores, Senior Designer

The Design 2024 Gold invitation from Spire Agency for the Texas law firm of Slack Davis Sanger (SDS) put an Austin twist on Oktoberfest. It was a helles of a piece that invited referring attorneys, judges, and politicians to the 18th Annual event where everyone had a guten tag time.

Prost, y’all! Did you know a wave of German and Czech immigrants settled in Texas starting in the 1830s and that their influence can still be felt today throughout Hill Country? That’s why, for the past 18 years, SDS has hosted an annual Oktoberfest at the Four Seasons in Austin, whose head chef happens to be from Germany. Attendees at this upscale event include judges, politicians, business leaders, and, most importantly, referring attorneys. 

For 2023, the event was rebranded “Slacktoberfest” after the firm’s managing partner and international aviation expert, Mike Slack. For one day, the state’s top legal minds dropped the suits for schnitzel and a little “Bock ‘N Roll.”

An oversized postcard was the primary invitation for most guests, while a highly customized gift box was delivered to the firm’s top referral attorneys. The gift box was a metallic gold box with blue and gold foil stamps and magnetic snap. The gift item included a high-end German beer stein and messaging about the event details, letting invitees know that “it’s stein time.”

Included on the gift box were intricate event icons, including a western hat with a snifter glass and a cowboy boot that doubles as a beer stein. Other icons included a pretzel made of a lasso rope and a bratwurst in a saddle, all accompanied by filigree with beer hops, wheat, and bratwurst. A little Bavaria meets Bat City (one of Austin’s nicknames), if you will. These icons were incorporated throughout all event materials.

Is there a lawyer in the haus? Despite being “the wurst event of the year,” the custom gift box was a huge success. It had a 27% response rate—compared to the 2.7-4.4% average response rate for most direct mail. Event attendance was 600 attendees, exceeding our goal by 58% while also obtaining at least five qualified case leads.

Mike Stopper is principal/EVP of client service and moonlights as a copywriter at Spire, one of the country’s most-awarded B2B agencies and the 2023 Agency of the Year by the D/FW chapter of the American Marketing Association. Stopper is also Dallas’ most-awarded account lead over the last eight years. As a senior designer at Spire, Alex Flores is one of Dallas’ most-awarded designers and a 2023 Ad 2 Dallas “32 Under 32” recipient.

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Discover more award-winning Design 2024 entries here.

Author: Graphis