For The Heart

Manual Labor's Year in Review

Manual Labor's Year in Review

Manual Labor

December 22, 2022

As 2022 comes to a close, we like to reflect on the good work, connection, and growth we’ve gotten to experience here at Manual Labor.

Here’s what made our Hearts full: 

Our First Decade: Manual Labor turned 10! When Sam’s parents moved from Seoul, Korea to America in 1976, they never could have dreamt of what she’d build. We’ve also built our #GoodPeopleNetwork along the way —  and we enjoyed this opportunity to update our peeps or get back in touch with old friends. 

Giving Back: As part of our 10th Anniversary celebration, we wanted to pay forward some of the goodwill we’ve received. We launched The Love Sticker Project, supporting the ACLU and World Central Kitchen, which features 10 of the most incredible designers (including MLers Kenny, Kjersti, and our CEO Sam) taking on a question of modern importance: What does love look like to you?

Donate to the ACLU or World Central Kitchen now.

Sam Turned 50: She’s our fearless leader, so it’s natural she approaches aging fearlessly, gracefully, and just generally awesomely. Sam’s journey really resonates: her blog post about “asking a woman her age” was our most popular of the year. 

Connecting the Dots and the #GoodPeopleNetwork: Our business is really about you, the #GoodPeople we love, respect, and are inspired by. With our new series Connect the Dots, we want to learn more about what the #GoodPeopleNetwork is paying attention to. We think you’re super cool and we want to hear from you, too! Send us a message if you’d like to be featured in an upcoming edition! 

Of course, every single thing we do is about the #GoodPeopleNetwork, so just a quick note of gratitude to those we get to see in and out of the office. Thanks so much to our ML team, our clients (current and past), and our partners. Without you, we would not be able to grow this wonderful network of people who align across love, diversity, empathy, and accountability.

Here’s what kept our Brains busy: 

Trendspotting with hype_cast: What’s the opposite of a slow news day? There’s a lot going on, and a lot of it has more to do with marketing and business than you might think. To help you (and us, TBH) keep track of everything that’s happening (even if it shouldn’t be), we launched hype_cast. It’s ML’s humble way to keep you plugged in. Volume One! And Two! And our newly launched Volume Three! What should we cover next???

hype_cast's Sadie Scale

Spreading Expertise through new channels: We proudly produced our first eBook: The Manual Labor Website Launch Playbook. eBooks are just one of the new ways ML is helping our #GoodPeopleNetwork practice what we’ve been preaching. It’s designed to be picked up and used — to provide value immediately. We’re working on our next few eBooks now. What marketing topics would like to see Manual Labor cover in 2023?   

The #GreatWork: It’s the other side of our motto (Do great work with good people!) and you’ll allow this once-a-year, not-so-humble-brag. Here’s some highlights of what we’ve done this year with Tulsa/GKFF, Koddi, and Kibün —  not to mention our own Manual Labor website redesign. To all our partners this year (see below): THANK YOU. 

What’s next for ML in 2023? 

We’re hearing from existing and future clients about the power of using a wide array of content to appeal to the various audiences they want to connect with.

Like many areas of our work with clients, some of this will follow the fashion of crawl, walk, run. So, some may dabble in video for their own websites, while others go full-throttle into the world of TikTok and other new-fangled community-driven applications. Where does your community live and interact online? In 2023, we’ll be focused on guiding our partners on how to best connect with the people and communities that impact their businesses.


We love meeting more Good People that are as passionate as we are. Give us a shout if you want to connect and learn more about ML.