The official blog of Nancy Marshall Communications
offering tips, techniques, and thoughts from Maine's PR Maven, Nancy Marshall

 

PLEASE NOTE: This blog has been discontinued.
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Should You Trade Google Alerts For Newsle?

NMC Account Executive Anna McDermott

Newsle is yet another of the latest social media platforms that is trending right now and the intrepid folks at NMC are here to tell you whether or not you should pay any attention to it. You should. It’s pretty cool and you really don’t have to do anything with it other than sign in. Newsle will then track your friends and email you as soon as they’re in the news (Newsle = news + people).

It’s an easy way to monitor your own brand and the brands of your friends and clients, and its algorithm for finding your contacts in the news is pretty brilliant – people think it’s far more accurate than having a Google alert.

When I signed in, I linked my Gmail, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts to my Newsle profile and instantly anyone I’m connected to who has been in the news in the last few years showed up on my Home screen with links to the articles. You can also follow anyone on Newsle – like the President or Justin Bieber.

You can choose how often Newsle emails you with updates (1-7 days per week) and whenever your friends are in the news, you’ll know. The more someone is in the news, the higher their Newsle rank is – Barack Obama has a 94, our own Nancy Marshall has a 28. Because your rank is dependent on the prominence of the news source you are in and how often you are in the news, your number could be seen as a positive or negative, so I wouldn’t necessarily place too much importance on it.

Go ahead, sign up for Newsle – you may find it replaces many of your Google alerts and its interface is really pleasant to use.

Contributed by: Anna McDermott

 

WGAN’s Mike Violette Gives the Inside Scoop on Social Media

WGAN Talk Host, Mike Violette

Politics are dicey in the world of public relations, so it’s probably a good thing that this week’s Monday Maine Maven, WGAN’s Mike Violette, would rather talk about himself and how his love of Maine and social media keeps him fresh.

Violette says, “Politics aside, I just try to listen to what people are talking about when I’m not behind the microphone. Whether it’s in Mardens or Hannaford, I make mental notes and who knows? It might just make it on the next day’s show.”

He adds that he is lucky that the management at WGAN, the Portland Radio Group and Saga Communications are supportive of his leanings, whether they’re political or not, and credits this for his transparency on social media. Mike says, “My job is to have an opinion on the WGAN Morning News, so I take that same approach with Facebook.”

For Violette, Facebook simply feels like an extension of what he has been doing for the past 30 years on radio. He says that even before social networking came about, he was already sharing his life with listeners each day. He says, “You have to connect with your listeners, and there is no better way to do that than to talk about the same things they do—your kids, your families, your dog.”

A recent example of that relationship comes from Mike’s family beagle, Hope. After 14 years his family had to make the difficult decision to say goodbye. His daughter, Jessica, had created a Facebook page for Hope, and when he mentioned on air what the family was going through he says, “The outpouring of support and love from people I had never met was amazing. Even though I had never met them, they had met me, my family and our dog because they’re loyal listeners, and I love them for it.”

Hope Violette aka “Hope the famous beagle”

The responses he receives on Facebook are generally positive, but he encourages the other side to voice their opinion because “it makes for a spirited debate.” He adds that, “No one gets whacked by me for having an opposing view, I encourage that!”

However, you might get whacked if you try to talk smack about fresh scallops and fresh Shipyard brews, two of the items Violette credits for his staying in Maine all these years, but he also says that “in February I could be convinced to move to Key West.” All joking aside, Mike says, “I’m a Mainer and I just love the state and the people.”

When he’s not on air, Violette is a movie fan listing the following as his top 5:

You can connect with Mike on Facebook, or by tuning into the WGAN Morning News weekdays from 5-9am on 560AM.

 

 

The Maine Children’s Home for Little Wanderers’ Teen Parent School Program a Success

We’re proud to work with our client The Maine Children’s Home for Little Wanderers in Waterville for so many reasons. This year, we were proud to spread the word about the success of their Teen Parent School Program, a program that has been helping young parents for more than 39 years. This spring the program graduated 7 teens, including 2 fathers.

Pictured from left to right: Graduates Brianna Bernier and Leah Broulliet along with Sharon Abrams, executive director of The Maine Children’s Home, graduate Kelsey Marcia and Jana Burgoyne, teacher of the Teen Parent School Program

Earlier this month, The Maine Children’s Home for Little Wanderers awarded graduates Brianna Bernier, Leah Broulliet, and Kelsey Marcia with $1,000 scholarships at a Teen Parent School Program celebration luncheon at Joseph’s Fireside Steakhouse.

Next year our agency is looking forward to helping The Maine Children’s Home for Little Wanderers celebrate the 40th anniversary of their Teen Parent School Program as they continue to help young parents in Maine succeed.

Click here to learn more about the Teen Parent School Program at The Maine Children’s Home for Little Wanderers.

Let The Good Times Roll

Wrap N’ Roll Creator and Owner, Avery Richter

The best things happen when you least expect it—that’s the motto that best describes the success of this week’s Monday Maine Maven, Avery Richter. Little did she know that when she transformed a business idea into reality as a requirement for graduation, it would grow into what Wrap N’ Roll is now. Richter says, “I honestly didn’t think that far in advance; I thought of it as a way to be able to get a hands-on experience of owning and managing my own small business. I never expected it to grow this quickly!”

Across the country there is a growing trend in buying local, and Wrap n’ Roll fits the mold perfectly. Avery provides homemade sweets that are sold every Sunday throughout the summer at the Belgrade Lakes Market; not to mention the scrumptious menu of items available from her food truck Tuesday through Sunday in the summer featuring locally-grown products, and year-round catering services.

Richter takes pride in owning a local business and is always looking for ways to give back to her community. It’s no surprise that when she was asked to join the board for the Belgrade Community Center she immediately took on the role. Richter says, “The employees of the community center have always been very loyal and supportive of my food truck. I have donated food to their October Fest and Father, Daughter Dance. I also thought joining the board would be a great way to serve the community I grew up in.”

A program that means a lot to Avery is the teen cooking class she is teaching. The class takes place over the course of six weeks and is designed to teach the students how to create healthy recipes that are easy to make at home. The recipes range from cupcakes and smoothies to sushi and burritos. Wrap N’ Roll has truly become a fixture in the community.

A rockin’ day in the Wrap N’ Roll food truck!

All of the exposure of Richter’s business would not have been possible without the integration of social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Avery says, “They are essential to a business like mine! You can’t beat free marketing! Everyone uses social media as a part of their daily routine, and it makes communicating with more people and businesses so much easier.” She loves that she can easily share what she is doing with her customers through a post, but more importantly, she loves the networking that occurs on social media between small businesses in the area. She adds, “I’ve found that social media is a great way to support each other by sharing what they’re doing, and what we’re doing together.”

Facebook has been a major push for Wrap n’ Roll. Richter receives messages from customers about their positive experiences with the business, and the photos she posts from catering events are frequently shared by hundreds of people. The posts featuring the “S.O.T.D” (special of the day) or new arrivals are popular and lunch is frequently requested as ‘that sandwich you posted on Facebook this morning’. Avery says that she enjoys using social media and knows that it will continue to help her business grow.

So what’s next for Wrap N’ Roll? This summer you can enjoy the food truck in Belgrade, Tuesday-Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. They will be featuring Boar’s Head meats, and eggs from Emery Farm in Wayne, Maine. Richter says, “I have such a passion for food and am glad that Wrap N’ Roll is allowing me to share that passion with others.”

The official Wrap N’ Roll food truck in Belgrade last fall.

To find out more about Avery and her team, or to request Wrap N’ Roll to cater your next event, check out their Facebook page HERE.

Advocacy for Predictive ROI

Nancy Marshall, principal of Nancy Marshall Communications

This is Nancy….welcome to the blog and welcome springtime!

I was invited to speak about economic development marketing to the Broadband Capacity Task Force at the State Capitol on Thursday, March 15, 2013.  I shared the power of “Predictive ROI,” which is a patent-pending process created by author and Web marketing expert Stephen Woessner who is one of my agency’s strategic partners. Predictive ROI allows website owners to predict the return on investment of their marketing expenditure by creating a sales funnel on their site, and understanding how many visitors it takes to convert to a sale.

I talked about our own process to create a marketing communications plan collaboratively with a client, which we call The Marshall Plan™ and explained that having a strategic plan for a website allows a business to exponentially increase traffic and convert website visitors into sales.

Chuck Lawton of Planning Decisions introduced me to the Broadband Commission as a leader in Maine who has fully embraced the power of the Internet in public relations and marketing.

Planning Decisions Chief Economist, Chuck Lawton.

The Task Force’s job is to recommend regulatory, investment, and best practice strategies for expanding the availability and use of high-speed Internet in rural Maine. The Broadband Capacity Building Task Force examines current practices in the fields of health care, education, and economic development; identifies obstacles to greater use; and recommends policies for change.

The Task Force is staffed by Planning Decisions. It operates with funding support from the ConnectME Authority, recipient of a grant from the National Telecommunications and Information Authority (NTIA) under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The ConnectME Authority is a Maine government component unit established by the State of Maine legislature in 2006 to facilitate universal availability of broadband service and increase the adoption and use of that service among Maine individuals, businesses, and public organizations.

Thomas College Featured on MPBN

Mike Dacri, account coordinator at NMC

Hi, Mike here.

I don’t need to tell you but college is expensive and tuition seems to go up and up all the time! We recently got the opportunity to work on a project with Thomas College, which is working to make college more affordable for their students.

On Thursday, March 14, 2013 Thomas College was featured on “Maine Watch with Jennifer Rooks” on MPBN.  Interviews were conducted with Thomas College President Laurie Lachance, Board Co-Chair Conrad Ayotte and students Sarah Marckoon and Jacob Darveau about Thomas’ tuition freeze, Guaranteed Jobs Placement Program, and how Thomas is working to make college more affordable for its students. Check out the video below. The story about Thomas starts at 6:20.

Great job, Thomas!

Eventbrite Changing the Way You Buy Tickets

NMC Account Assistant, Erika Bush

Hi, Erika here! It seems that every event I’ve been invited to in the past year has been linked to Eventbrite, and for good reason—it’s free! That’s right, completely free to create an online event.

Planning an event is stressful enough, without having to worry about ticketing, too. Another great feature of Eventbrite is that if your event is free than so is their service—they provide the perfect platform to promote it within your area without paying a thing.

The fees only begin when you start selling tickets, and what you pay for them to take all the stress out of online ticketing is minimal:

Eventbrite Fee

2.5%  plus $0.99 per ticket

*Cap fees at $9.95 per ticket for organizations

Processing Options

 

Standard Credit Card Processing Fee: 3% of ticket value

 

Paypal: 2.9% of ticket value + $0.30 per transaction

 

Google Checkout: 2.9% of ticket value + $0.30 per transaction

 

Authorize.net: rates vary

Kevin and Julia Hartz, husband and wife co-founders of Eventbrite

Since Eventbrite’s inception in 2006, the company has slowly been taking over the ticketing industry. They recently received a $50 million investment that makes some believe they could begin competing with larger sites such as TicketMaster and StubHub.

The first sign of them being ready to step it up comes from their recent partnership with Facebook’s “Buy Tickets” feature—a partnership that occurred within 48 hours of the new feature’s launch.  This seamless connection comes from the relationship that was already in place between Eventbrite and Facebook from their work together on Open Graph, which helps people tell stories about their lives through the apps they use.

The way the new “Buy Tickets” feature works is that when someone creates an event using Eventbrite, they will be given the option to “Publish to Facebook.” After this is done, the event will be on Facebook and they simply invite people to their event, or make the event public for the “Buy Tickets” button to appear.

The new feature will allow Eventbrite users to seamlessly link their events to Facebook.

Sharing events on Facebook happens every day; it’s coordinating where to send the money for these events that gets messy. You have to either be directed to another site to pay or you show up to the event and hope there are tickets left. Taking out the middle man makes sense. Kevin Stone of the New York Times quotes Eventbrite CEO Kevin Hartz saying, “Events are naturally social. You are certainly likely to share with others what conference you are attending, what club event you are going out to or what class you are going to take.”

Eventbrite has been growing steadily since its founding in a small one-room office in San Francisco back in 2006. It took off in 2010 and by 2012 it had more than tripled in size. Much like Pinterest, Eventbrite doesn’t show any signs of slowing down anytime soon, and is the one to watch when it come to online ticket sales.

Bases Loaded and Going for the Grand Slam

Maine Maven, Jessica Chahanovich

The Love Gun is just one of the many aliases of this week’s Monday Maine Maven, Jessica Chahanovich. Categorizing just what she does is hard to do because…well, she does just about everything. Chahanovich is the social media guru behind the upcoming dating app, FriendFlirt; works for Fenway Park (possible new public address announcer); writes for the Yawkey Way Report; works as a nanny; co-hosts a radio show; and writes for multiple blogs on dating advice and baseball.

How does she juggle it all? Jessica credits her grandmother saying, “She has Alzheimer’s, and she told me to make sure that I do everything I want to do while I still have the ability to enjoy it all. I took her advice literally and it inspires me each day to keep trying as many fun and new things as possible.”

Chahanovich has many interests, but her major passion is the major leagues. Her love of the Red Sox is prominent on her Twitter page, where she often receives and shares exclusive news and sneak peeks with her followers. Jessica broke every teenage girl’s heart when Justin Bieber recently started following her posts. Her response, “I think it’s pretty hilarious—the kid must really like baseball. I have no idea how he would have stumbled upon me otherwise, unless he’s looking for a new online dating site!”

Jessica’s alter ego, The Love Gun.

One of Jessica’s latest venture has been working as The Love Gun for the upcoming online dating app, FriendFlirt. Chahanovich says, “It’s going to take the creepiness and anonymous feeling out of online dating. It makes it real by using your current social media accounts to find people you might know, or should know, to go on dates with—no outside sites and memberships.” She adds that the first 10,000 people that sign up will receive a free membership.

As the designated Love Gun, she is responsible for their social media posts and blog. Man Candy Monday, Foxy Lady Friday and a weekly post with relationship advice and dating tips are the weekly features. Jessica is also hosting a podcast show with the Big Sauce Radio Show team. The show will include online dating horror stories from fans and weekly competitions for Best 6 Pack, Best Pedicure and more.

Jessica at her home away from home, Fenway Park.

When she’s not blogging for FriendFlirt, Chahanovich is blogging about her love of baseball. Her latest topic has been about the audition process she is going through to become a public address announcer for Fenway Park, where she already works as a quality control team member. She is currently a finalist, and waiting to see if she makes it to the next round of auditions in Fort Meyers, Florida to announce a spring training game.

Chahanovich’s love for baseball has also landed her a gig writing for the Yawkey Way Report. On their blog, she contributes her thoughts on baseball news related to the Red Sox and their players. Her wit and sense of humor shine through and you almost feel like you’re sitting at a bar, discussing the latest over a burger and beer.

While Jessica isn’t quite sure what she loves the most, she hopes that her sentiment will inspire others to pursue their own happiness. She says, “I love to share my passion with people who don’t have it, or better yet, simply haven’t discovered it yet.”

To keep up with Jessica you may follow her on Twitter @RedSoxChach, like FriendFlirt’s Facebook page, read the FriendFlirt blog, read her Red Sox blog, or check her out on the Yawkey Way Report.

First Friday Artwalk in Kingfield

This week’s Friday Fab Foto comes from NMC Account Assistant, Erika Bush, and from my visit to the Kingfield Artwalk last Friday. We had done publicity for the event, which featured Maine artist, Claudia Diller, a horse-drawn wagon and a raffle at the Schoolhouse Gallery!

The Kingfield Artwalk takes place October through April, on the first Friday of each month. Stop by on Friday, April 5, 2013 to see the charm Kingfield has to offer! Top Left: Penny Hall; Bottom Left: Senator Tom Saviello and Nancy Marshall; Center: Jenny Taliadoros; Top Right: Cynthia Orcutt and children getting ready to choose the raffle winner; Bottom Right: Artwork on display at Webster Library

Other featured artists/works included:

  • Katherine Mahoney of Carrabassett Valley
  • Paintings by Abby Shahn, Abbott Meader and Dimitri Karabchievsky
  • Prints by Ellen Roberts and Joel Levasseur
  • Sculptures by Melita Westerlund and Amanda Pellerin
  • Miniatures by Meryl Klaif
  • Encaustic paintings by Ulrike Stadler
  • Stained glass by Pat Pray from Lexington
  • Leslie Meyer from LSM Studios in Athens
  • Noni Badershall of Freeman who makes Sheppard rugs from the wool produced on her farm
  • Live demonstrations wire sculpture work at the Sugarloafer Shop by Karen Campbell
  • Samplings of handmade books by Jenny Taliadoros, Jan Royall, Karen Reid and Penny Hall

The Kingfield Artwalk takes place October through April on the first Friday of each month. It’s a great stop on your way up to Sugarloaf for the weekend and offers a quintessential charm that can only be found in western Maine.

 

Do YOU have a Fabulous Foto to share with us? Submit it to our Facebook page or email it with a brief description to ebush@marshallpr.com for the chance to be featured as our next Friday Fab Foto-grapher!

NMC Presents: Social Media Boot Camp, Tuesday, Oct. 25!

 

In my line of work, my colleagues and I have to stay on top of the latest trends in marketing and PR. One tool that is proving increasingly more important is social media. While I make sure that my employees and I are up to date on the latest technologies, I run into far too many other business owners who aren’t sure how to use social media or don’t use it to its full capacity.

For this reason, I am very excited to share that the Greater Franklin Development Corporation and NMC have decided to partner up and show other Maine businesses and organizations that not only is social media multi-faceted, but that anyone can and should use it!

Tuesday, Oct. 25, several of my staff members and I will be presenting a social media boot camp at the Carrabassett Valley Public Library from 5:30-8:30 p.m.

This interactive workshop will focus on techniques to increase engagement and the use of paid online advertising to promote products and services through social media such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube. We will also be discussing the rise of mobile marketing and location-based media. Participants are encouraged to bring their own laptop, but laptops can be provided (please specify if you need one when you register).

To qualify for this workshop, we ask that participants are able to answer yes to the following questions:

  1. Do you have a personal Facebook profile already set up?
  2. Do you have a LinkedIn profile set up?
  3. Do you have a Twitter account set up?
  4. Are you familiar with Facebook advertising?
  5. Are you familiar with Cost per Click advertising?

Cost to participate is $150.00 (includes materials and computer use).

For more information and to register, please contact Shelby Childs at schilds@greaterfranklin.com or call (207) 778-5887.

I hope to see you there!