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Friday, May 29, 2015

FleishmanHillard Minneapolis/St. Paul Expands Integrated Marketing Communications Expertise in Food, Consumer Packaged Goods and Retail



FleishmanHillard, a leading international communications agency, today announced two additions to its expanding Minneapolis/St. Paul office. KipLindman has been named a vice president and Jamee Tuttle a managing supervisor. Both bring integrated marketing communications expertise in food, consumer packaged goods and retail to the team.

Lindman has a strong track record of developing, managing and executing integrated communications campaigns for national consumer packaged goods brands.   Before joining FleishmanHillard, Lindman held key marketing roles at Jack Link’s Protein Snacks, most recently as manager of public relations and corporate communications.   Previously, he worked in account roles at Minneapolis marketing communications firms.    

Tuttle brings deep experience in consumer packaged goods, developing programs across integrated channels including public relations, digital, events and influencer initiatives. She has provided counsel to companies across the food, health and wellness sectors while working at several Twin Cities agencies. 

“We are excited to add talented individuals such as Kip and Jamee to our growing office,” said Dave Schad, senior vice president and general manager of FleishmanHillard’s Minneapolis/St. Paul office.  “The expertise they bring adds to the momentum we’re experiencing and will help deliver creative and results-oriented thinking to the wide range of clients we serve.” 

FleishmanHillard’s Minneapolis/St. Paul office offers global capabilities in consumer and B2B marketing, corporate communications, crisis communications, sports marketing, public affairs, internal communications, social and digital communications and transmedia content marketing.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

A Look at an Up-and-Comer: Laura Jollie

Laura Jollie is an assistant account executive at Weber Shandwick and director of communications at The Gina Morri Foundation.

Laura Jollie
1.    Tell us a bit about your public relations experience so far.
A: When I transferred to the University of Minnesota from Michigan State University after my freshman year, my efforts to cultivate a career in public relations really took off. Throughout those three years, I served as the University of Minnesota PRSSA Chapter president, agency director and account executive, worked as an agency assistant at Nerland Co., interned in the financial services practice group at Weber Shandwick, operated as a senior account executive for the Minnesota Daily, interned for Yelp's marketing division and helped manage KSTP-TV's digital and website assets in news configuration and distribution as a web producer intern.

After graduating in 2014, I now lend my skills in the public affairs practice group in the Minneapolis Weber Shandwick office as an assistant account executive.

2.     You have been a repeat winner of the Minnesota PRSA Student Classics as well as the Dr. Willard Thompson Scholarship. How did that help to launch your career?
A: By winning these PRSA accolades in back-to-back years, I was able to frequently showcase several independent testimonies of my capabilities as it relates to the PR industry. Conversely, I was able to develop a regenerative network because of the events I was able to attend due to winning the awards. While I believe demonstrating your competency is the foundation to any career, I also think it’s crucial to have a community of professionals who you can collaborate and network with.

3.     What have you learned from being so involved in gymnastics?
A: As a young gymnast I would travel to camps and competitions around the country and had to perform in front of elite coaches, college recruiters and other very intimidating people. Experiencing that level of pressure early on taught me that nothing worth having comes easy and that you must always be willing to do the uncomfortable and daunting tasks in whatever arena of life that you’re in – whether that be on a four-inch wide beam or in a conference room.

4.     You volunteer for The Gina Morri Foundation. Tell us more about that organization and what you do.
A: Gina Morri was a dear friend, little sister, talented gymnast and teammate who suddenly passed away in 2011. As a way to continue Gina’s infectious passion and dedication to the sport of gymnastics, The Gina Morri Foundation was established to provide financial support for other competitive gymnasts who retain Gina’s infectious passion to become an elite-level gymnast. Just recently the foundation sponsored Sunisa Lee who won the 2014 U.S. Challenge (I’m calling it now – you will see her in the Olympics!) 

Each year, Midwest Gymnastics hosts the Gina Morri Invitational as a way to celebrate Gina’s enthusiasm for the sport and as a way to raise money for the foundation to help support excelling gymnasts like Sunisa. In my position I assume various responsibilities that include media relations, social media engagement, generating sponsorship opportunities, etc. We are hoping to build some momentum this year, so if anyone is interested in being a part of the journey, please don’t hesitate to reach out!

5.     What do you do on a day-to-day basis at Weber Shandwick?
A: LOTS of writing! Whether that be a trend report, social media strategy, web-specific content, newsletters, pitching the media or new business research, the writing always continues. I never thought I would be capable of writing as much as I do, but I absolutely love it because I learn so many new things on a daily basis. I’ve also taken on more media relations projects, key messaging ventures, some SEO strategy responsibilities and will be traveling more in the coming months for client activations. I’m incredibly thankful for all of the opportunities Weber has provided me so far and can’t wait for what’s ahead! 

6.     What is your desired career path?
A: I wish I knew the answer to this one, but I’m still trying to figure it out. I’ve worked in both financial services and public affairs and both of those industries really fascinate me. As far as skill set, I enjoy social strategy and reputation/crisis management. As for the long term, I’ve dabbled with the idea of starting my own boutique agency alongside my dad, though I’m not sure if I’ve sold him on the idea just yet. (Special thanks to Doug Spong for making our Journalism class create agency business plans – my Jollie Public Relations idea came to life after seeing the finished project!)

All this to say, I’ve had amazing opportunities to work under and alongside people like my dad, Sara Gavin, Eric Pehle, Randy Sands, Barb Iverson, Doug Spong, Steve Wehrenberg and many others and can only try my best to exemplify their level of expertise, leadership and passion in whatever I do.

Connect with Laura on LinkedIn or follow her on Twitter.

Beganik Strategy + Design to Mercury Creative Group change as a result of the company’s growth in its team and continued success

Beganik Strategy + Design – a Saint Paul-based marketing and branding agency – announced today it is becoming Mercury Creative Group. The name change better signifies the company’s strong team collaboration and success serving clients for almost two decades with its distinct focus on strategy first, design and implementation to follow.
“The name change really reflects who we are as a company at this rapidly growing phase in our history” said Justin Bieganek, Creative Director and Founder. “For the past 17 years we have been growing and expanding; giving us the opportunity to hire an amazing team that is focused on strategy-based thinking and outcome-focused communications. Our new name better reflects our team as a collaborative whole, along with being easier for our clients and the greater public to remember and pronounce.”
“Justin and his experienced team have been crucial in helping the Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce by enhancing our brand impact as our organization has grown,” said Matt Kramer, Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce President. “They have not only assisted with the branding aspect, but were also key players who helped to define a clear vision for the future of the Chamber and our members. They have an amazing team and the new name is just the start of the next chapter in a successful future for this great company..”
The new identity was developed by Bieganek and his team using the same process typically used for their clients to implement a re-branding initiative.  The Mercury Creative Group re-branding work included creating a fresh brand look, feel and tone to help support the name change. This included a new logo, tagline and website, each of which will be unveiled at their June 4 launch party at CHS Field.
“Beganik Strategy + Design has done exceptional work to build a beautiful website that visitors can access smoothly across all platforms for the Saint Paul Saints. Justin and his team have been such a pleasure to work with. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for this company and wish them all the best!” Derek Sharrer, St. Paul Saints Executive Vice President and General Manager
Over the past few years, Beganik Strategy + Design’s services have broadened their scope of work to include more consultative strategy services and more collaboration with other firms. This name change and re-branding initiative brings new life to Mercury Creative Group by better reflecting the company’s current and future employees, values, services and goals, while still maintaining their equity and credibility.

Gibbs Promoted to Senior Vice President, Strategy at Beehive PR

Nicki Gibbs has been promoted to senior vice president, Strategy at Beehive PR. Gibbs will continue to focus on client strategy, business development and issues management, as well as expanding the agency’s research, insights and branding services.

“Nicki ‘s creativity, vision and strategic drive have been core to Beehive’s success and growth over the last 10 years,” said Lisa Hannum, Beehive PR CEO.

Gibbs was instrumental in developing the agency’s proprietary Insights service, helping clients turn real-time, market-facing research into business strategies that produce game-changing results. She also co-developed Beehive’s Branding service. Her issues management work includes crisis communications and guiding client organizations in solving complex business challenges, internally and externally. Gibbs joined Beehive in 2005 and most recently was vice president, Strategy. She has helped attract and lead client work for many Beehive clients during her tenure, including Christopher & Banks, Rasmussen College, University of Minnesota Health and 6pm.com, a Zappos company.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Clarity Coverdale Fury helps Zoo call the ocean to Minnesota

The ocean is coming to the Minnesota Zoo. Headlined by critically endangered Hawaiian monk seals, Discovery Bay is the focus of a new multimedia campaign from agency Clarity Coverdale Fury (CCF). The campaign, which starts running today, includes TV, radio, out-of-home and digital, and highlights the newest addition to the exhibit, as well as sharks, rays, jellies and other sea life.

The Minnesota Zoo is the only place in the world, aside from Hawaii, where the public can see Hawaiian monk seals on exhibit. To add to the uniqueness of the experience, only 1,100 of these animals remain in the wild. As a result, it was important for the Zoo to communicate both fun and conservation messages in the new campaign.

“The Minnesota Zoo provides fantastic family entertainment, but it also connects Minnesotans to conservation. The zoo’s conservation efforts deserve to be highlighted, and there’s no better opportunity than with these amazing seals that cannot be re-released into the wild. It was very important to us to convey not only the excitement of bringing in a new animal, but the pride Minnesotans should have in the zoo’s work to save animals from extinction,” said CCF President Rob Rankin.

The TV spot features a young girl summoning ocean creatures to the Minnesota Zoo using a conch shell she finds on the beach. Out-of-home advertising declares that the monk seals have arrived by showing them in an ocean that appears to be at the zoo. Radio features actual Hawaiian monk seal sounds, “translated” by a human, encouraging visitors to see the seals, and learn how to protect them.

“The Minnesota Zoo’s commitment to entertainment, conservation and education is inspiring. This campaign creatively brings together the fun you can experience at the Zoo, while promoting the importance of protecting animals,” said CCF Executive Creative Director Jac Coverdale.

“This is the first exhibit opening since the Minnesota Zoo adopted its new strategic plan, which articulated the organization’s mission to ‘connect people, animals and the natural world to save wildlife,’” said Minnesota Zoo Marketing and Communications Director Lani Willis. “It was important for us to have ‘saving wildlife’ central in our creative campaign messaging. Our hope is that this campaign will inspire curiosity about these amazing animals as ambassadors for their species in the wild, and pride in Minnesota Zoo’s efforts to protect them.” 

The new campaign from CCF for Minnesota Zoo aims to drive visitors to “Rediscover Discovery Bay,” which opens May 23. To view the work, please click here. 
Haley Kilgour joined Weber Shandwick Minneapolis as a Vice President in the creative experience
Haley Kilgour
group. Kilgour has coordinated and shepherded award-winning branding, design and interactive projects for multiple Fortune 100 brands and many other firms, working with Design Replace, Barrie D’Rozario Murphy, VSA Partners, Charles S. Anderson Design Company and others.

Kilgour works on “the business side” of visual communications, knitting together creative talent and account leadership to bring engaging ideas to life.
“I am here to help people learn to stand on their heads,” Kilgour says. “By teaching people to stand on their heads – both clients and internal colleauges – I’m teaching both comfort and discomfort. Ultimately, people find power when they start thinking outside of their comfort zone.”

Job - University of Minnesota - Public Relations Consultant

University of Minnesota - Public Relations Consultant

Axvig Joins Tunheim's Public Affairs Team

Tunheim, a Minneapolis-based communications consulting firm, recently added Adam Axvig to its public affairs’ talent.
 
A veteran of several campaigns, Axvig served as communications staff for U.S. Senator Norm Coleman’s re-election bid in 2008 and held leadership positions in Minnesota Senate Republican Caucus campaigns in 2010 and 2012. Most recently, Adam served as communications director at the Minnesota AgriGrowth Council. Axvig also has legislative experience working as leadership staff at the Minnesota Senate.

Adam’s strengths include statewide coalition building and grassroots organizing as well as navigating the complex network of relationships at the Minnesota State Capitol. 

“Adam brings compelling and varied experience to Tunheim’s diverse roster of consultants, which helps us to better deliver on our collective best value proposition — our deep belief that no one individual is as good as the company’s collective best,” said Lindsay Schroeder Treichel, senior consultant + chief transformation officer.

“Joining the Tunheim team allows me to use my considerable skills in public affairs and communications to help Tunheim clients navigate their unique challenges and opportunities on a national, state and local level,” said Axvig.  

Monday, May 18, 2015

Job - ACIST Medical Systems, Inc - Marketing Intern

ACIST Medical Systems, Inc - Marketing Intern

Job - Ecolab - Marketing Communications Manager

Ecolab - Marketing Communications Manager

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Olive & Company Completes Redesign of General Mills Corporate Website

With household brands ranging from Cheerios to Yoplait, General Mills products are in the kitchens of consumers worldwide. But General Mills as a corporate citizen has a story to tell as well, which was the challenge in front of marketing design agency Olive & Company as it redesigned the General Mills corporate website.

“The General Mills corporate website needs to reach many audiences, from consumers to influencers to investors and anyone looking for information on the company as a whole,” said Shawn Lockhart, director of accounts at Olive & Company. “The new website features more of a blog-style homepage, giving General Mills the opportunity to highlight not only brand stories but also topics that impact the entire organization, such as corporate sustainability.”

For the new General Mills corporate website, Olive & Company:

       Modernized the look and feel, and implemented a storytelling-focused design,
       Developed a site architecture that highlights relevant content throughout the site,
       Produced a responsive website to ensure a better user experience across all devices, and
       Developed a flexible, universal template system.

“The new design lets us tell stories that give people insight to our company on topics such as health, innovation, global responsibility, company financials and of course our brands,” said Jim Thielman, global communications web manager at General Mills. “It also presents stories from sources outside the company, so visitors can read what others are saying about us.”

The new General Mills corporate website was launched on January 6.

Since 2007, Olive & Company has partnered with General Mills on a range of projects including: A Taste of General Mills blog, the corporate intranet, the General Mills sustainability brochure, microsites and more.

Job - Neuger Communications Group - Public Relations Intern

Neuger Communications Group - Public Relations Intern

Friday, May 08, 2015

3 Simple PR Tips For Healthcare Providers

The financial success of a healthcare organization or a physician’s office lies not only in the strategic marketing of that business, but the reputation that the organization holds within its community. In order to obtain more patients / clients, the company must execute a well-planned marketing and advertising strategy.

However, how can you keep your current and potential clients content? Failing to do so could lead to a rapid weakening of your professional standing. In order to sustain your positive repute, it is important to start with the simple PR-based tips listed below.

By acknowledging the worth of reputation within the healthcare field and the delicate matters that doctors and healthcare providers specialize in, you should always make sure that your organization is marketed and responsive in the most convenient, compassionate and moral way.

Minor tasks to build trust and ensure a positive reputation for your healthcare company include the following:


Promote your unique purpose.

Does your health facility utilize a technique for treatment that is considered innovative in the health treatment niche? If so, make sure that you emphasize the benefit of your treatment when you reach out to media outlets.

Health treatment is always a big topic in the media. In order to give yourself a recognition boost over your competitors, a best practice would be to figure out what health-related topics are trending online or in the news and see how your specific method of treatment fits in. How can you contribute to the public’s health problems? What can you do that no one else can or has done?

Offer consistent tips and advice.

To ensure that your health clinic or health-related business is viewed as an authority in the industry, provide free and useful information via newsletters, blog articles and-or podcasts that relates to your niche. Doing so on a regular basis will remind your followers, the general public and potential clients that you understand the health industry. They will also appreciate the fact that you are willing to share beneficial information with them, helping you develop a “trusting” reputation at the same time.

Provide case studies on your website or in the media.

On your website (and with the permission of the patient), feature stories of your patients, including what their specific problem was and how you provided the solution. This way, your services will seem much more credible. When your viewers see your patients discussing your service, it will add a personal appeal to your brand.



Job - Blue Star Media Holdings - Media Buyer

Blue Star Media Holdings - Media Buyer

Job - Marketing Specialist, Business Development & Marketing, Minneapolis

Marketing Specialist, Business Development & Marketing, Minneapolis

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Job - PR & Social Media Account Executive Opening At Maccabee Public Relations

PR & Social Media Account Executive Opening At Maccabee Public Relations

Formica Corporation Awards Commercial Public Relations Business to Spong

Formica Corporation, a leading provider of branded, designed surfacing solutions for commercial and residential customers in North America, has chosen Spong to be the company’s public relations partner for its commercial business.
Spong was chosen as part of a competitive pitch process to partner with Formica Corporation to launch exciting new collections to its commercial audiences in the United States. Formica Corporation is a part of the Formica Group of companies, the world’s largest manufacturer of High Pressure Laminate, and a trusted brand worldwide. The company works closely with architects, designers and developers to continually develop new products and surfacing solutions that complement current design trends.  
“Our home and design team is looking forward to putting our insights and relationships to work for Formica Corporation to highlight their design and product innovation leadership,” said Julie Batliner, managing director of Spong.
“Spong’s deep knowledge of the commercial design space makes them a great partner. We look forward to working with Spong to help us connect our products and message to the architecture and design community,” said Amy Gath, vice president of marketing at Formica Corporation.