MNPR Blog

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Refreshing a Tried and True Brand: Spong is the new name for Carmichael Lynch Spong

After blazing a trail of success in the public relations industry for 23 years, Carmichael Lynch Spong is refreshing its identity to reflect even more possibilities down the road. Beginning today, it will be known as Spong.

The move is based on the firm’s core beliefs as well as its continued evolution, according to Doug Spong, president and founder. “Since day one, we’ve been creating ideas that help our clients defy gravity. We believe ideas are not the property of any one discipline, but are conceived through insight, born from strategy and brought to life through creative execution. Creating more white space for Spong through a refreshed identity allows us to reimagine our service offerings without limitation.”

Deeply rooted in public relations, the firm has evolved and grown through holistic, 360-degree thinking that smartly solves its clients’ problems. The refreshed Spong identity reflects the firm’s growing service offerings — from traditional public relations services such as earned media relations, brand journalism, reputation management and crisis/issues management, to relatively new offerings such as community management, paid, social, SEO/SEM and all things mobile — and provides the flexibility to add more as new needs and technologies evolve.

Both the Spong and Carmichael Lynch brands will continue to celebrate their sibling relationship under parent company Interpublic Group, and to share a common purpose, values and culture. What has changed with the Spong brand are the visual expressions of its refreshed identity, including a new logo mark and its applications in a new website, www.SpongPR.com, its social channels, business systems and signage.
“Given today’s overlapping disciplines of PR, advertising, digital, social, mobile and experiential marketing, the confluence of earned, owned and paid media is stronger than ever before,” Doug Spong added. “We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished for our clients and we’re excited for our future.”

Grounded in core principles
Since its founding in September 1990, the firm has been guided by three core principles: 1) to represent a select but envied portfolio of big name clients; 2) to attract like-minded achievement addicts who desire to produce their career-best work; and 3) to be the undisputed champion of best practices.

These principles have helped build the firm to what it is today. Over the years it has earned a reputation as a leader in best practices and grown to become one of the top-25 largest PR firms in the nation. It was named 2013 Creative Agency of the Year by national trade journal The Holmes Report and is a four-time PR Agency of the Year as awarded by PRWeek, PR News and The Holmes Report. No other PR firm has won  more Silver and Bronze Anvil awards from the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).

Today Spong operates globally and represents a portfolio of blue-chip clients including American Standard, Arla Foods, Bath & Body Works, First Bankcard, Genuine Thermos Brand, GNC, H&R Block, Jack Link’s Beef Jerky, Jennie-O Turkey Store, Lutron, MasterBrand Cabinets, Minnesota Public Radio, MOM Brands, Morina, Rapala, Sherwin-Williams, SUPERVALU, Trane and the University of St. Thomas. Spong and Carmichael Lynch also remain as committed as ever to integrated thinking and execution on behalf of the many clients they share, including new additions to the roster such as GNC.

A vision to inspire
The future of the firm will continue to be grounded in its core beliefs, according to Doug Spong. “Our vision is still to be the world’s most creative PR firm. Our mission remains to ignite and sustain momentum for a select but envied portfolio of clients. And our purpose will always be to inspire.”

After blazing a trail of success in the public relations industry for 23 years, Carmichael Lynch Spong is refreshing its identity to reflect even more possibilities down the road. Beginning today, it will be known as Spong.
The move is based on the firm’s core beliefs as well as its continued evolution, according to Doug Spong, president and founder. “Since day one, we’ve been creating ideas that help our clients defy gravity. We believe ideas are not the property of any one discipline, but are conceived through insight, born from strategy and brought to life through creative execution. Creating more white space for Spong through a refreshed identity allows us to reimagine our service offerings without limitation.”
Deeply rooted in public relations, the firm has evolved and grown through holistic, 360-degree thinking that smartly solves its clients’ problems. The refreshed Spong identity reflects the firm’s growing service offerings — from traditional public relations services such as earned media relations, brand journalism, reputation management and crisis/issues management, to relatively new offerings such as community management, paid, social, SEO/SEM and all things mobile — and provides the flexibility to add more as new needs and technologies evolve.
Both the Spong and Carmichael Lynch brands will continue to celebrate their sibling relationship under parent company Interpublic Group, and to share a common purpose, values and culture. What has changed with the Spong brand are the visual expressions of its refreshed identity, including a new logo mark and its applications in a new website, www.SpongPR.com, its social channels, business systems and signage.
“Given today’s overlapping disciplines of PR, advertising, digital, social, mobile and experiential marketing, the confluence of earned, owned and paid media is stronger than ever before,” Doug Spong added. “We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished for our clients and we’re excited for our future.”
Grounded in core principles
Since its founding in September 1990, the firm has been guided by three core principles: 1) to represent a select but envied portfolio of big name clients; 2) to attract like-minded achievement addicts who desire to produce their career-best work; and 3) to be the undisputed champion of best practices.
These principles have helped build the firm to what it is today. Over the years it has earned a reputation as a leader in best practices and grown to become one of the top-25 largest PR firms in the nation. It was named 2013 Creative Agency of the Year by national trade journal The Holmes Report and is a four-time PR Agency of the Year as awarded by PRWeek, PR News and The Holmes Report. No other PR firm has won  more Silver and Bronze Anvil awards from the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).
Today Spong operates globally and represents a portfolio of blue-chip clients including American Standard, Arla Foods, Bath & Body Works, First Bankcard, Genuine Thermos Brand, GNC, H&R Block, Jack Link’s Beef Jerky, Jennie-O Turkey Store, Lutron, MasterBrand Cabinets, Minnesota Public Radio, MOM Brands, Morina, Rapala, Sherwin-Williams, SUPERVALU, Trane and the University of St. Thomas. Spong and Carmichael Lynch also remain as committed as ever to integrated thinking and execution on behalf of the many clients they share, including new additions to the roster such as GNC.
A vision to inspire
The future of the firm will continue to be grounded in its core beliefs, according to Doug Spong. “Our vision is still to be the world’s most creative PR firm. Our mission remains to ignite and sustain momentum for a select but envied portfolio of clients. And our purpose will always be to inspire.”
- See more at: http://spongpr.com/news-insights/press-releases/refreshing-a-tried-and-true-brand-spong-is-the-new-name-for-carmichael-lync#sthash.RH099BQT.dpuf
After blazing a trail of success in the public relations industry for 23 years, Carmichael Lynch Spong is refreshing its identity to reflect even more possibilities down the road. Beginning today, it will be known as Spong.
The move is based on the firm’s core beliefs as well as its continued evolution, according to Doug Spong, president and founder. “Since day one, we’ve been creating ideas that help our clients defy gravity. We believe ideas are not the property of any one discipline, but are conceived through insight, born from strategy and brought to life through creative execution. Creating more white space for Spong through a refreshed identity allows us to reimagine our service offerings without limitation.”
Deeply rooted in public relations, the firm has evolved and grown through holistic, 360-degree thinking that smartly solves its clients’ problems. The refreshed Spong identity reflects the firm’s growing service offerings — from traditional public relations services such as earned media relations, brand journalism, reputation management and crisis/issues management, to relatively new offerings such as community management, paid, social, SEO/SEM and all things mobile — and provides the flexibility to add more as new needs and technologies evolve.
Both the Spong and Carmichael Lynch brands will continue to celebrate their sibling relationship under parent company Interpublic Group, and to share a common purpose, values and culture. What has changed with the Spong brand are the visual expressions of its refreshed identity, including a new logo mark and its applications in a new website, www.SpongPR.com, its social channels, business systems and signage.
“Given today’s overlapping disciplines of PR, advertising, digital, social, mobile and experiential marketing, the confluence of earned, owned and paid media is stronger than ever before,” Doug Spong added. “We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished for our clients and we’re excited for our future.”
Grounded in core principles
Since its founding in September 1990, the firm has been guided by three core principles: 1) to represent a select but envied portfolio of big name clients; 2) to attract like-minded achievement addicts who desire to produce their career-best work; and 3) to be the undisputed champion of best practices.
These principles have helped build the firm to what it is today. Over the years it has earned a reputation as a leader in best practices and grown to become one of the top-25 largest PR firms in the nation. It was named 2013 Creative Agency of the Year by national trade journal The Holmes Report and is a four-time PR Agency of the Year as awarded by PRWeek, PR News and The Holmes Report. No other PR firm has won  more Silver and Bronze Anvil awards from the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).
Today Spong operates globally and represents a portfolio of blue-chip clients including American Standard, Arla Foods, Bath & Body Works, First Bankcard, Genuine Thermos Brand, GNC, H&R Block, Jack Link’s Beef Jerky, Jennie-O Turkey Store, Lutron, MasterBrand Cabinets, Minnesota Public Radio, MOM Brands, Morina, Rapala, Sherwin-Williams, SUPERVALU, Trane and the University of St. Thomas. Spong and Carmichael Lynch also remain as committed as ever to integrated thinking and execution on behalf of the many clients they share, including new additions to the roster such as GNC.
A vision to inspire
The future of the firm will continue to be grounded in its core beliefs, according to Doug Spong. “Our vision is still to be the world’s most creative PR firm. Our mission remains to ignite and sustain momentum for a select but envied portfolio of clients. And our purpose will always be to inspire.”
- See more at: http://spongpr.com/news-insights/press-releases/refreshing-a-tried-and-true-brand-spong-is-the-new-name-for-carmichael-lync#sthash.RH099BQT.dpuf

Minnesota chapter of the Business Marketing Association Announces 2014 Leadership Team


The Minnesota chapter of the Business Marketing Association (BMA) has announced its 2014 Board of Directors. Ready to lead the chapter is newly elected President Jennifer Zick, senior director of marketing at Magnet 360. Under Zick’s leadership, BMA-MN will focus on building a community of support and collaboration for Twin Cities-based business-to-business (B2B) marketing communications professionals through expanded programming and resources.

Zick succeeds Dan Joyce, global integration leader at Honeywell, who served as the chapter’s president since 2012. Joyce will continue to support BMA-MN in his new role as past president.

BMA-MN’s Board of Directors comprises 10 executive committee members and seven committee members who bring a diverse wealth of knowledge and experience in Minnesota’s B2B marketing community.

Executive Committee
·         President – Jennifer Zick, Senior Director of Marketing – Magnet 360
·         Past President – Dan Joyce, Global Integration Leader – Honeywell
·         Executive Director – Amy Sporre, Owner – Business Sidekick
·         VP, Events and Development – Camila Drahn, Account Manager – OnTrac International
·         VP, Membership – Marshall Gage, VP of Business Development – OppSource
·         VP, Sponsorship – Jim MacLachlan, President – Tartan Marketing
·         VP, Finance – Ben Conley, Senior Financial Analyst – Thomson Reuters
·         VP, Young Professionals – Andrew Herkert, VP of Sales – TruScribe
·         VP, Communications – Stephani Simon, President – Inprela Communications
·         Corporate Advisory Council Liaison – Patrick Petschel, VP, Account Services and Strategy – Schermer

Membership Committee
·         Membership Director – Bruce Volkart, Chairman – Volkart May and Associates Inc.
·         Membership Support – Bob Peterson, Research Director – SiriusDecisions

Events and Development Committee
·         Event Director – Joan Moser, President – Spoken Impact

Communications Committee
·         Communications Director – Emily Conley, Account Executive – Tartan Marketing
·         Social Director – Katie Wolfe, Senior Marketing Communications Manager – HighJump Software
·         Content Director – Laura Monn Ginsburg, Director of Marketing – Alternative Technology Solutions
·         Community Manager – Callan Young, Marketing Specialist – Siteimprove, Inc.

Now entering its sixth year, BMA-MN is the only organization in Minnesota dedicated solely to the professional development of B2B executives, marketers and communicators. With nearly 100 members, the chapter is one of the strongest in the nation.

In 2014, BMA-MN will be offering skill-building sessions on topics including how to communicate effectively with executives, tips on launching and responding to industry game-changers, and how to enhance customer communication efforts through omnichannel marketing.

For additional information about BMA-MN and upcoming events, please visit www.bmaminnesota.org.

Friday, April 11, 2014

New work from Clarity Coverdale Fury empathizes with smokers who want to quit

Clarity Coverdale Fury released a new campaign for longtime client QUITPLAN® Services this week. The campaign follows 18 months of research on how tobacco users want help to quit. It acknowledges that they know they should quit and want to quit, and highlights how QUITPLAN Services provides free quitting support while leaving the lecturing and judging behind.

The “No judgments. Just help.” multi-media campaign coincides with the launch of new service offerings, including tools like text messaging and emails. To reflect the idea of “all new,” the campaign uses stop-motion animation, a different production style than QUITPLAN Services has used before. The hero characters in the spots experience the types of judgments that are part of the daily life of smokers, and QUITPLAN Services comes to their rescue with help like free phone coaching and a free starter kit of nicotine patches or gum.

“It’s no secret that almost 70% of smokers want to quit and have tried multiple times to break the habit. Our research uncovered that smokers are frustrated by failed attempts and feel they’ve tried everything,” said Clarity Coverdale Fury Associate Director of Brand Development, Molly Hull. “QUITPLAN Services has broken the mold of what traditional tobacco cessation programs have offered by giving tobacco users the kinds of help they really want, which includes being able to access services using their cell phone. This campaign promotes that ground-breaking help, which also happens to be free for Minnesotans, in a way that smokers really related to in focus groups.”

The campaign departs from the focus on health effects that is prevalent in tobacco cessation advertising, instead relating to the social pressures tobacco users experience. The message of the campaign, “No judgments. Just help.” encourages people to try to quit again, an effort that is more likely to be successful if they get help.

“The current smoker has been beat down. Beat down by television. Beat down by the public. By their doctors, family and friends. And while everyone means well, it was time to put shame aside as a tactic. It was time to be positive,” said Clarity Coverdale Fury’s Associate Creative Director, Emily Hoyne. “Tobacco users do not need reasons to quit. They need to be inspired that they can quit.”

The new campaign includes two TV spots, radio, print, out-of-home and online components, including many elements in Spanish. 

A sample of the work can be viewed here.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Job - Uptown Association - Project Coordinator

Uptown Association - Project Coordinator

Buckneberg has been promoted to Senior Account Executive at Maccabee

Alison Buckneberg has been promoted to Senior Account Executive at Maccabee, the Minneapolis-based public relations and online marketing agency. Buckneberg handles marketing communications, media relations and corporate communications for a variety of Maccabee clients in the financial services, technology, education, commercial real estate and professional service industries. She also currently serves as Volunteer Social Media Manager for Le Sueur County Emergency Management.
 
Prior to joining Maccabee, Buckneberg served as a Communications Specialist with the law firm Gray Plant Mooty and as PR Specialist with Delta Airlines’ MLT Vacations.    

Twice-named one of Minnesota’s “100 Best Companies To Work For,” Maccabee is a national public relations and online marketing firm providing clients with exceptionally strategic and creative media relations, social media strategies, inbound/content marketing and corporate communications counsel from its headquarters in the Warehouse District of downtown Minneapolis. Learn more about Maccabee atwww.maccabee.com andwww.maccabee.com/blog,  and find us on FacebookTwitter,LinkedInYouTube and Pinterest.



Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Job - Honeywell - Public Relations Specialist

Honeywell - Public Relations Specialist

Job - Honeywell - Content Specialist

Honeywell - Content Specialist

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Spyglass has been selected to create a 10th anniversary campaign for the 2014 Ivey Awards



Spyglass announced it has been selected to create a 10th anniversary campaign for the 2014 Ivey Awards, an annual award show celebrating the renowned theater community of the Twin Cities.

“The Iveys is an amazing success story and a perfect example of someone having a great idea and going big or going home,” said Molly Rice, co-founder and chief executive officer for Spyglass. “For nine years the creative work promoting the event has been outstanding, so we continued the tradition and added to it. We are proud of our award-winning work, and are so excited to create the 2014 Ivey Awards tenth anniversary campaign. The opportunity says a lot about what we can bring to the table – and how high the bar is for Twin Cities’ creative work.”

Founded in 2004 by visionary Scott Mayer, The Ivey Awards increase awareness and appreciation of Twin Cities’ professional theater by providing a celebration for both those working within the theater community and those in the audience. 

The coveted AdFed award recognizes excellence in creativity among Twin Cities’ advertising agencies. The 2013 award-winning Spyglass campaign theme – “Celebrating the Heroes of Twin Cities Theater” – featured energetic, engaging imagery of actors transformed into archetypal superheroes with theater-inspired names like “Proscenia,” “Smash Hit” and “Ghost Light.” The campaign also featured well-recognized Twin Cities’ landmarks – including the Mill District, the Minneapolis City Hall Clock Tower, the State Capitol and Foshay Tower – as the backdrop of the characters’ dramatic acts of heroism.

“We’re thrilled with the momentum the Spyglass campaign has been able to generate for The Iveys in 2013, and are excited to see what Spyglass will come up with for our 2014 campaign,” said Mayer. “Spyglass’ creative work last year perfectly captured the spirit of The Iveys and maintained our tradition of using stunning photography to tell our story, and, best of all, it increased event attendance and awareness of Twin Cities’ professional theater.”

Supporting and growing the thriving local arts community runs deep at Spyglass, as this latest win follows the news that the Hennepin Theatre Trust has selected Spyglass to develop the brand, engagement strategy and campaign creative for the “Made Here” initiative. Made Here brings artists from around the state of Minnesota to feature and sell their work in underutilized downtown Minneapolis storefronts. Presented by Andersen Windows, this ambitious project showcases artist-led projects and includes pop-up galleries, showrooms, performances, interactive designs, music and seasonal displays. The 40+ exhibits are expected to attract thousands of in-state and out-of-state visitors annually. Made Here is set to launch July 11, 2014.

Job - The Goodman Group - communications/public relations intern

The Goodman Group - communications/public relations intern

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Gage Expands Team with Four New Hires

Gage, a Minneapolis-based behavioral marketing agency, announced today it has added four new employees to its growing team: Sam Zastrow, engagement manager; Luke Mueller, senior developer; Logan Wilberts, user experience architect; and Nick Bukosky, network administrator.
 
Sam Zastrow has been hired as an engagement manager, where she will support the Microsoft team by providing technical and customer support for both the client and its end users. She will also oversee the management of various projects, focusing primarily on Microsoft ExpertZone, a retail sales and loyalty community. Zastrow comes to Gage from Energy Resources, where she led event and outreach strategy and management, as well as content and resource development.
 
Joining the technology team as a senior developer is Luke Mueller. Mueller is a Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer, and will focus much of his time developing and maintaining software solutions for Microsoft ExpertZone. Most recently, Mueller worked as an independent software consultant and has developed software solutions for a long list of major corporations, including General Mills, 3M, Honeywell and Target Corp.
 
Also joining the Gage team is Logan Wilberts. As a user experience (UX) architect, Wilberts will work to enhance the way users interact with client systems, focusing heavily on Microsoft projects. Previously, Wilberts was a UX designer at The Nerdery and Taylor Corp., and has a background in both graphic design and web design.
 
Gage has also added Nick Bukosky as a network administrator. Bukosky is tasked with managing Gage’s internal servers and network equipment, performing patches and software upgrades, and supporting the IT team. Prior to joining Gage, Bukosky worked as a systems administrator at Dakota Drug, Inc.
 
“While Gage has seen tremendous growth over the past few years, our priority has always been on meeting and exceeding our clients’ needs and expectations,” said Tom Belle, president and CEO of Gage. “We’re excited to welcome these four talented individuals to the Gage team, and know that their diverse skillsets and experience will be an integral part of our continued success.”

Monday, March 17, 2014

The BrandLab and Minnesota Public Radio are co-hosting the third in a series to discuss race and opportunity in business

WHAT:
The BrandLab and Minnesota Public Radio are co-hosting the third in a series of Fearless Conversations on race and opportunity in business. This session will be moderated by Minnesota Public Radio Daily Circuit host Tom Weber and will feature Alfredo Martel, SVP, Caribou Coffee; Mike Fernandez, corporate VP of community affairs, Cargill; and Carla Vernon, business unit director, General Mills.

WHY:
Statistics show people of color are under-represented in the marketing industry — not only in the Twin Cities, but nationwide. This opportunity gap is fed by persistent and often subtle forms of bias, which flourish largely due to the industry's failure to have open, honest conversations about race. The BrandLab is bringing this discussion out into the open.
“There's an urgent need to reflect diversity in marketing, and conversation is going to be key to making a change,” says The BrandLab's executive director, Ellen Walthour. “Even well meaning firms can let longstanding biases get in the way. Identifying those roadblocks starts with talking about things that might make us uncomfortable.”

WHO:
Minneapolis nonprofit The BrandLab is on the cutting edge of change — not only locally, but nationally. Supported by more than two dozen national and international corporations and agencies that call the Twin Cities home, The BrandLab is working to change the face of advertising and marketing — literally. This first-of-its-kind group is wholly committed to reflecting America's racial diversity in their industry's work, its workplaces and its workers—quickly. 

WHEN:
April 17th, 5:00-7:30 p.m.
Networking at 5:00; conversation from 6:16-7:30. 

WHERE:
The Illusion Theater
528 Hennepin Ave. #704
Minneapolis

HOW:
Tickets for this Fearless Conversation are available only at Eventbrite.


Saturday, March 15, 2014

Minnesota Online Marketing Agency aimClear® Expands with Two New Hires



aimClear, an online marketing agency, dominant in audience targeting and customer acquisition, added two experienced professionals to its expanding team of holistic marketers. Jeremy Mayes joins the Duluth office as senior analyst while Kevin Watterson expands the St. Paul office as account manager.

 “aimClear has experienced incredible success, as noted by two years in a row on the Inc. 5000 list,” said Marty Weintraub, founder and evangelist of aimClear. “We are excited to welcome new talent to help propel our growth and service our expanding list of global clients. 

Veteran Internet marketing professional Jeremy Mayes brings 20 years of experience managing and directing online marketing initiatives for agency clients and in-house organizations to his new role as senior analyst at aimClear. Mayes diverse backgrounds in conversion optimization, PPC, affiliate marketing, SEO and social marketing coupled with his in-house and agency experience make him an incredible asset to aimClear and its clients. Mayes comes from Illinois-based Triumph Higher Education Group, where he led paid and organic search efforts as marketing director. In his new role, he will provide strategic online guidance to agency clients ranging from incredible startups to blue-chip brands.

Kevin Watterson brings nine years of communication experience to his new role as account manager. Prior to aimClear, Watterson directed the Communications Department for the GOP Caucus in the Minnesota House of Representatives, overseeing a team of media writers and handling media and public relations for the Speaker of the House, House Majority Leader and other legislative leaders from 2009 to 2012 as director of media services. In addition, he played a lead role in writing editorials and managing the Caucus's online presence including Facebook, Twitter and its external website. Watterson will support public relation and social media efforts for the agency’s top global clients.