Refraction AI

Delivering Key Results


Messaging Development

Media Relations

Brand Launch

Demo Support


Launch Press Materials

Strategic Media Outreach


Meet Refraction AI

Refraction AI is the last mile autonomous vehicle (AV) delivery platform and maker of the REV-1: a three-wheeled, lightweight, and low-cost autonomous delivery robot. The Michigan-based business was referred to The Key by an early investor when they needed thoughtful communications with heart to shift their company from stealth mode to hype.

Zero to 100

Our biggest challenge was generating impactful brand visibility. Emerging from stealth meant The Key was responsible for introducing the company, brand and product to the world. We set out to craft narratives from scratch that centered the benefits each uniquely designed REV-1 brings across the delivery chain, from retail to customer.

Another noteworthy messaging challenge was convincing consumers that robot delivery has tangible benefits (especially pre-pandemic). Contact-less delivery is now commonplace, but was not in Summer 2019. Similarly, our messaging had to proactively address the narrative between job creation and industrial shifts.

Charting A Successful Course

TheKey earned Refraction AI an exclusive story and center-stage at TechCrunch: Refraction AI's Co-Founder Matt Johnson Groberson did a "roll out" and pitch at TechCrunch Mobility conference in San Jose, and TechCrunch ran with their exclusive.

After a splashy initial launch, Refraction AI earned additional coverage across business, tech, and consumer publications. Publications include Wired, Washington Post, Mashable, Car and Driver, Axios, and regionally in outlets such as MLive, The Detroit News, and The Detroit Free-Press. Our strong launch and strategic media coverage set up the company to build momentum at the start of the 2020 pandemic.

Lessons Learned

Refraction AI's vision was to be the "defacto standard of last mile delivery." At The Key, we agree to "play a team sport" and rode the bull though the highs and lows of launching a tech-company. We are proud to have been Refraction AI's trusted partner from launch and have gotten to grow with them as they secured stable funding, assembled an incredible leadership team, and expanded into new markets (Hello, Austin TX!)

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