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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

PRSA - Meet the Media: Panel Discussion with Key Members of the Twin Cities News Media

Thursday, October 9, 2014
11:30 a.m. Registration/Lunch

Noon- 1:00 p.m.  Program
Loews Hotel (, Minneapolis, MN) 

Join PRSA Twin Cities, NIRI Twin Cities, and Business Wire and for a lively, interactive discussion featuring  distinguished panel of local media reports and journalists who will share their insights on how to improve your media relations outreach and get your message heard in today’s digital world.

Meet the Media panelists:
Raschanda Hall, (Moderator, Business Wire)
Duchesne Drew, managing editor, Star Tribune
Jim Hammerand, digital editor, Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal
Julio Ojeda-Zapato, tech reporter, Pioneer Press
Andy Putz, editor, MinnPost
Dave Schwartz, sports reporter, KARE 11

Risdall Adds Two New Faces to Talented Digital Marketing Team

To meet growing client needs and expectations, Risdall has hired as digital marketing manager and as digital marketing specialist.

“Adding Beth and Dave and their combined abilities will continue to elevate our clients’ digital marketing programs to the top of their industries and drive us forward as an agency in the digital marketing space,” said Josh Dahmes, chief digital officer. “Beth’s ability to see data behind marketing campaigns and bring that intelligence to the center of marketing recommendations, combined with Dave’s desire to enhance our clients’ content strategies, make these individuals great assets to our team.”

In her role as digital marketing manager, Varela’s passion for analytics and goal-driven return-on-investment tracking fuel her ability to obtain desired results for clients with backward-engineered reporting. With her website development and JavaScript background, Varela hopes to implement a client tag management process, comparable to a trigger system for user tracking on websites, through the recently enhanced Google Analytics upgrades. Prior to Risdall, Varela worked for Make Music, Inc., as their digital marketing manager. Varela has a bachelor’s of music in film scoring from Berklee College of Music in Boston, Mass., and experience writing music for independent films, documentaries and commercial advertising.

After years of freelance content marketing and social media writing, Dougherty brings a proven record of planning, creating and implementing strategies across the digital marketing spectrum as Risdall’s digital marketing specialist. By combining his portfolio work, crisis communications interest and Google AdWords and Analytics proficiencies, Dougherty looks to integrate the public relations and digital worlds with online content benefitting both divisions. A member of the Minnesota Public Relations Society of America, Dougherty has a Bachelor of Arts degree in creative writing from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and master’s degree from St. Thomas University in business communication.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Job - Wild Prairie Harley-Davidson - Marketing Coordinator

Friday, September 19, 2014

Job - SEIU Local 284 - Communications Director

Relevance: Matter More

New book from co-authors Phil Styrlund and Tom Hayes outlines how to “matter more” in business and in life
In an age of commoditization, people, products, brands, and companies are becoming interchangeable. We have two choices: we can be commodities or we can be relevant and matter more. How do we transform interchangeability into relevance? Relevance: Matter More answers the question: “How do we matter more?” The book release is September 18, 2014.

“Individuals and companies around the globe long to matter more,” says Relevance co-author Phil Styrlund. “Our world is glutted with information, but short on wisdom. As intelligence becomes readily available and delivered by myriad technologies, relevance remains a gem of great value. This book is dedicated to helping individuals and companies identify and obtain relevance, in life and in business, so that they can make a difference for themselves and others.”

First-time authors Phil Styrlund and Tom Hayes draw upon their personal and business experience, and upon examples from the lives of Theodore Roosevelt, Ada Lovelace, Harper Lee, Ulysses S. Grant, and other men and women whose lives illuminate history. They have created a powerful formula for achieving relevance.

“Success, significance, and relevance are three distinct but interrelated objectives,” says Hayes. “Success reflects our achievements. Significance reflects how far we’ve moved toward our purpose. Relevance is the choice we make to employ our gifts in the service of others. The journey to relevance improves the quality of our service to our clients and communities.”

Through thoughtful observations, investigations, and deliberations, Styrlund and Hayes have identified the four dynamics of relevance—authenticity, mastery, empathy, and action—and a formula for creating relevance that empowers people and companies to make a difference for themselves and others at work, at home, and in their community.

Styrlund and Hayes invite readers to apply these principles, and explore what it means to matter more in their own lives, and in the lives of others.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Risdall Adds New Project Manager Position to Operations Team

Risdall adds Don Eitel to its operations team in a new project manager position. In Eitel’s role, he will evaluate, redesign and manage the company-wide processes for handling projects, planning schedules and organizing resources across all departments, as well as work on client accounts. This will allow for a more efficient workforce and will give Risdall leadership the tools it needs to plan for organizational capacity and growth.

The services that Risdall provides bring the entire suite of communications and marketing disciplines to product launches, branding, reputation management and more. Eitel’s work in unifying processes is especially important for Risdall’s clients because the agency solves all types of business-level needs.

“What I hope to accomplish at Risdall is to make the process simple and everyone’s jobs easier so they can focus more on the clients,” Eitel said.

The improvements Eitel makes will aid Risdall’s efficiency, helping the agency and clients meet deadlines and strengthen collaboration between departments. Eitel describes himself as a proactive leader who can see the bigger picture, but can also dive down to the level of detail that projects require.

“Risdall is constantly looking for ways to evolve so we can continue to achieve success for our clients. Don’s eye for operational excellence will help to streamline our processes and increase our efficiency,” said Jennifer Risdall, chief operating officer at Risdall. “With more than a decade of leadership experience, Don brings an original approach to managing projects, making him a great asset to our operations team.”

Eitel specializes in marketing, branding, social media and logo design, with web design knowledge in WordPress, Drupal and static HTML pages. He brings 12 years of business management experience working in entertainment businesses including Mu Performing Arts and Starting Gate Productions.

During his seven years at Mu Performing Arts, Eitel was instrumental in guiding the organization to a greater local and national profile, helping establish Mu as a leader in its field. He oversaw a period of 50 percent growth during the economic downturn and maintained fiscal and organizational stability while guiding the company through a leadership succession plan.

The switch from nonprofit work to an agency setting was a big career move for Eitel, but Risdall’s history as a family-owned company makes it a good fit for him.

“There’s a good vibe here. You can tell that everybody that works here wants to be here,” Eitel said.

Eitel holds a bachelor’s degree in music from the University of Minnesota with an emphasis in guitar performance.

Job - Emerson - Campaign Manager

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

VocalEssence finds a new voice through new brand platform, logo and tagline

VocalEssence — the iconic choral ensemble that has enchanted audiences for decades — turned 46 this year, and as often happens around this age, the arts organization found itself doing a little soul searching. Today the organization introduces a new brand platform, including a logo and tagline.
“VocalEssence embarked on a journey to explore the core of who we are, what we do, and where we see ourselves in the future,” says Mary Ann Aufderheide, VocalEssence executive director. “To help us navigate, we formed a committee of members from the VocalEssence Board, staff, singers, and trusted friends, and enlisted consultants including Brand Tool Box, REPLACE, and Dialog Studios. In the end, VocalEssence has found our new voice and direction for the future. And now that we have found it, we want to tell the world about it.”
The choral group’s new branding goes beyond the fresh logo and tagline. At the core of its message is a brand statement describing the work VocalEssence sets out to do: As a leading Minnesota arts organization, VocalEssence uses the power of choral music to enhance our community by producing innovative vocal music events that stir people’s souls. It’s a mission VocalEssence has been delivering on since its original inception as The Plymouth Music Series in 1969.
Of course, no brand refresh would be complete without a new tagline. The new VocalEssence mantra? “Together We Sing” — a statement that embodies the belief that choral music strengthens the community, and emphasizes the message that those who sing together can succeed together.
The brand’s new colors — blue and orange — represent a stable and responsible organization (blue) that anchors vibrant new music and educational programs that light a spark in the community (orange). The left side of the logo represents the technicality and discipline of reading notes on a page, while the right side delivers the dynamic, emotional and passionate aspects of singing.
 “Bringing those elements together exemplifies the uniquely beautiful, soul-stirring music of VocalEssence,” adds Aufderheide. “We are very excited about our new look, representing both tradition and new energy for the future. The coming together of the two style elements celebrates the inclusiveness that is VocalEssence. Concerts, classrooms, communityeveryone is welcome!”
VocalEssence will roll out its new look in concert programs, communications and online with a brand-new website, optimized across platforms for computer, tablet, or mobile phone.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Job - Go Buy Local - Social Media/PR Intern

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Clarity Coverdale Fury Hires New Talent, Promotes from Within

The first days of September bring an addition to ClarityCoverdale Fury’s Brand Development team as well as a promotion in the Creative department.

Robin Rooney joined CCF as Brand Development Supervisor and will lead the agency’s newest account, MNsure. She comes from Colle + McVoy, where she was Senior Account Executive on Land O’Lakes and WinField.

We are very excited to have Robin on board. In her very short time here she has already shown tremendous leadership both internally and externally,” said Rob Rankin, President of CCF. 

Additionally, Sam Johnsrud was promoted to Assistant Art Director. Sam has been with CCF for two years and currently works on ClearWay Minnesota, Rembrandt Foods and Red Gold Tomatoes, among others.

“Sam is an outstanding designer and art director, plus a big part of our culture here. We expect great things,” said CCF’s Executive Creative Director, Jac Coverdale.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Job - Himle Rapp & Company - Account-Level Staff Member

Meet Young Professional of the Year Award Winner Shannon Heine

Shannon Heine
At this year's Minnesota Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Classics Awards, Shannon Heine of General Mills was named the Young Professional of the Year.

1. Give a little background about yourself, including your hobbies, interests and education.

I grew up in Maple Grove, Minn., and graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2010 with a degree in strategic communications and a minor in business management. I started at Carmichael Lynch Spong, now Spong, immediately after graduation as an intern and worked my way up to a senior associate. In March 2014, I accepted a position at General Mills as an external communications coordinator for the Global Communications team.

My hobbies and interest: I love being active. Whether I’m working out, doing yoga, going for a walk with my husband and dogs, or even doing yard work – I am happy when I’m out and about. On the same note, I am a huge book worm. I enjoy reading the New York Times bestsellers every once in a while, but I can get completely lost in a Chic Lit book that allows my imagination to run wild.

My other passion is cooking. I read a lot of recipes in my free time in an effort to find a recipe that is healthy and requires the least amount of ingredients (because I hate grocery shopping). Often times, I will combine multiple recipes into one to create my own concoction.

2. What made you initially fall in love with public relations?

I love to write and lucky for me, writing is also a strength of mine. I also have a hunger for learning and understanding what is going on in the world around me. I went into the U of M as a pre-journalism major, but quickly learned that PR offered the best of several worlds for me: writing, news curating and strategy. 

3. Touch on the key points of your professional PR career - various jobs, mentors, key responsibilities. 

I had several internships throughout college to help prepare me for starting my career at , the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Upper Midwest and University of Minnesota Academic Health Center. I then started as an intern at Spong right after graduation and was eventually hired on. 

4. Within the field of PR, what excites you about coming to work each day? 

I thrive off of the fast pace and ever-changing landscape of PR. I like to be challenged and know that each and every day will be slightly different than the last and the next. 

5. Obviously we see that the field of PR is filled with younger professionals... if you had to give them three pieces of advice that would enable them to becoming successful PR professionals, what would they be?
  • Seek valuable internships early.
  • Today, getting a job almost always requires a reference -- so foster relationships with your professors, mentors, coworkers and peers, show them what you can do and then engage them to be your advocate as you seek job opportunities. 
  • Bite off more than you can chew because you will find a way to handle it and do it well – someone gave me that advice when I started as an intern at Spong and I will be forever grateful for that. It pushed me to raise my hand for any and every project, share my opinion in meetings and challenge myself to learn everything about my clients and the PR industry. 
 6. Where do you hope to see yourself in five years? 

Just in the months I have been at General Mills, I can certainly see myself here for the long run. It’s a great company to work for and offers a lot of opportunity for growth. 

7. When did you join PRSA and what have you taken away from being a member of Minnesota PRSA?

I was a member of PRSSA in college, which gave me an inside look at the PR industry and all of the career opportunities/paths within PR.

I joined PRSA in 2012 and it has allowed me to continue to expand my network. I also participate on the PRSA Classics committee, which is always a fun event to be a part of.

8. Being in the field of PR for several years, do you see any upcoming trends for PR professionals?

Throughout my short career so far, it’s been interesting to me to see how social media has changed the media landscape. No longer are reporters simply bylining objective news articles, they are now encouraged – if not required – to have a presence on social to drive conversation and share their opinions. As PR professionals, social media provides yet another opportunity to foster relationships and credibility with reporters – if done well, of course.

Additionally, more than ever, PR is about telling a compelling and personal story for your brand or product. A good story will inform, involve and inspire your target audience to action.

9. You were recently received the Young Professional Award from Minnesota PRSA. How did this make you feel? Why do you think you were chosen?

When I learned I had won the Young Professional Award, I was so honored and touched that my colleagues would go to such lengths to recognize my work. I have been lucky enough to work with some of the best PR pros in the industry and they’ve given me invaluable opportunities to learn and grow. And, as Doug Spong likes to put it, I – like many PR pros – am an achievement addict and I am constantly pushing myself to exceed expectations in everything that I do.

10. Do you have a favorite quote or saying that relates to PR?

I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. –Maya Angelou

11. You recently joined General Mills after working for nearly four years at Spong. How would you compare and contrast the agency and corporate environments?

While the workplace cultures between agency and corporate are quite different in many ways, in this industry some things will never change no matter where you are. Whether you're at an agency or working in an in-house PR team, the fast-paced, deadline-driven, storytelling, real-time culture of this industry remains the same.

Connect with Shannon on .

-- / Skogrand PR Solutions, LLC
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