Centerpiece to Center Stage

Sonoco Adhesives Brochure Feature

Build Smarter with Sonoman

You might have seen Sonoman at some of Sonoco’s recent events, but did you know he’s also an expert in helping explain how Sonoco’s products can help you on your next project?

Have you noticed that your attention to Facebook posts (and other social media sites) has evolved over time? At first, just seeing a text post from someone you knew was exciting. Then posts with photos or text frames became novel. Now you are more attracted to video content. If a picture says a thousand words, a video must be geometrically much more informative!

Videos are now the media of choice for gaining attention in many venues including online and at trade shows. The audience is much more likely to stop and watch video if the subject is appropriate and the content engaging. When the people at Sonoco asked us to create videos for three of their Sonotube products we knew they had to be both entertaining and instructional.

Made with recycled paper, Sonotube products are almost always used as forms for, or voids in, concrete construction—although, some creative folks use them for other purposes. Japanese architect Shigeru Ban designed a temporary church in ChristChurch, New Zealand using 98 two-foot diameter Sonotube forms as roof trusses. Nicknamed the Cardboard Cathedral, the structure is being used by St. John the Baptist Anglican Church until a new cathedral is completed which will replace the one destroyed by an earthquake in 2011.

SonoMan Life Size Model

SonoMan Life Size Model

Two years prior to being asked to produce the Sonotube videos, we envisioned a “persona” for the product line. That idea became a 13.5-foot character constructed from actual Sonotube paper forms. “Sonoman” embodies the classic concrete construction worker: lean and muscular, broad upper body, well seasoned in the art of forming concrete columns and other structures and above all, intent on endorsing workplace safety. He was built as a centerpiece for an exhibit, and his reception at the 2016 World of Concrete conference and exhibition was so endearing that he became a natural fit as the “spokesperson” for Sonotube.

Our production of the videos drew heavily from the flavor of the typical construction environment and concrete worker including a focus on professionalism, capturing contractor colloquialisms and supporting safety procedures. One video focuses on the product’s resistance to moisture, enabling contractors to pour columns when rain is threatened. Another highlights the special inner coating on Finish Free® forms which gives columns a marble-smooth finish instead of the rough and unsightly seam that is common with ordinary forms. A third video explains how Sonovoid® tubes can reduce weight and waste when forming pre-cast beams or large slabs, such as airport runways.

These first three videos debuted in the Sonoco exhibit at World of Concrete 2017 and are now viewable online at

These first three videos debuted in the Sonoco exhibit at World of Concrete 2017 and are now viewable online at

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