Staging an innovative live-feed backdrop for Jack Johnson’s concerts, creating a visual showcase of the Goodland Hotel’s hip and breezy rooms, showcasing Lilac Patisserie’s gluten-free delights — all of these digital designs were hatched from an East Haley Street building with a colorfully coated interior and a stylish elephant logo.
This is Oniracom, the ever-growing marketing, content-creation, and web design firm that, for 15 years, has been working alongside the artistic development of major homegrown artists, businesses, projects, and dream realizations. Now, with a spearheading role in creating the Lagoon District, a branding initiative for the blossoming neighborhood between Anacapa, Milpas, Montecito, and Cota streets, they are poised to shape the future face of downtown Santa Barbara, as well.
Cofounder and CEO Jacob Tell launched Oniracom with friend and CTO Sean Campos while he was still a student at UCSB in 2001. With no social media or smartphones to speak of at the time, websites were a new and growing means for artists to promote their work. When a then-lesser-known singer and UCSB grad named Jack Johnson needed a website for his debut album, Oniracom stepped in.
“Our aesthetic is modern organic. We love authentic brands and storytelling,” said Tell, adding that the hometown-proud company strives to “integrate our breezy beach vibes to our interactions.”
Santa Barbara clients have included real estate company Live S.B., Playback Recording Studio, Duo Catering, and Santa Barbara Bar, plus nonprofits such as Heal the Ocean, the Foodbank, and Braille Institute. Bigger national names on the Oniracom roster are Goldenvoice’s Desert Trip festival, David Lynch’s Festival of Disruption, comedian Craig Shoemaker, and Bishop Lamont. But one of Oniracom’s more exciting self-powered projects is Storywall, a social-media-fueled audience-engagement platform to connect artists, businesses, and organizers directly with fans and, more importantly, fans-to-be. The S.B. Bowl and Earth Day Festival have both used the technology with success.
Most recently, Oniracom launched the Lagoon District initiative as a branding revitalization effort intended to bring “energy, commerce, and recognition” to the neighborhood of arts organizations, tech companies, wineries, and breweries that are uptown of the Funk Zone. With such aesthetic aims, the neighborhood could very well see a cultural revolution of its own. “We feel honored to be a part of the Santa Barbara community and love giving back to the positive teams and companies in town,” said Tell.