This is our cat Jules. She sort of adopted us about a year ago, just in time to become the chief mouser at our new house (because we live in the country now). She lives outside and enjoys sleeping anywhere that wouldn’t seem like a traditional sleeping spot (such as on my sunroof, as pictured). She has four very committed caretakers in our four kids, and they often refer to her as the seventh member of the Smart family. - Justin Smart
Pippa, Ringo and Grandma
This is Ringo. He is a snowshoe mix that I adopted from the humane society last July. Much like his musical counterpart, Ringo is a man of many talents. These talents include bird hunting, consuming extraordinary amounts of cat food, people watching and cuddling. He also enjoys ranch dressing, dirty socks and laying on electronics. I have always thought of myself as a dog person but Ringo is my best bud and I wouldn’t trade him for any dog in the world.
The last picture is of all 3 of our cats (it’s a lot I know). From left to right: Pippa, Ringo and Grandma. My roommate adopted Pippa two years ago from the humane society and another roommate adopted Grandma and didn’t want her when she moved, so now we have three cats. Who knew I would be a crazy cat lady at 24. - Alli Tocci
Dr. Jones and Big Moose
Meet Dr. Jones and Big Moose, pictured here having a cuddle fest at the expense of their owner, Tyson.
Dr. Jones enjoys playing board games with the Holtkamp family. - Tyson Holtkamp
Momo seems like a cute and cuddly feline companion, but in truth she is a ruthless hunter. She occasionally kills small pests, including flies, spiders and mosquitoes, and finds pleasure in stalking my dogs. Equipped with her trusty pink collar, she jingles her way around the house playing with her favorite toys, plastic wrappers. - Eugene Kim
Minnie and Big Fur
This is one of my kids, Minnie. The first picture is when I first brought her home at 8 weeks old.
She loves paper clips from my desk and “hides” them in her food dish. You can tell by the pictures she loves the office.
We call this one (above) “Big Fur.” She loves the blow dryer and has her fur done every morning. She also thinks she owns all the furniture in the house! - Becki Letham
Serena is the much loved and adored cat of the Stryker family.
Willis and Linus
We adopted Willis and Linus two years ago at the Pet Super Adoption in Salt Lake. They enjoyed their time in our kid-free household until baby Audrey joined our family last year. Though initially unsure of this “little human,” they quickly warmed up to her. However, since Audrey learned to grab and tug, Linus has been somewhat wary, but Willis, our cat who is more like a puppy, doesn’t seem to care one bit and actually enjoys the attention. - Jane Putnam
David Royal, assistant media planner
Las Vegas native and soon-to-be BYU alum, David has a diverse media planning background, gaining experience working as an account executive at the Las Vegas Review Journal and as an account planner in BYU’s top-rated Adlab. Here, he worked on clients such as Adobe, L’Oreal, Intel and Mountain Star Hospitals.
Aside from his professional and education background, David is fluent in Spanish and is an Eagle Scout, reminding all of us at PPBH to do a good turn daily. If stranded on a desert island, David would most miss eating French toast. One thing that hasn’t changed since he was 12 years old is the Bugatti Veyron topping his list for most-desired car.
Eugene Kim, account coordinator
Eugene, our newest to join PPBH’s advertising department, is a recent graduate of the University of Utah in marketing. He previously worked at Advanced Gloves as marketing director and Fringe Media as a social media intern. At Advanced Gloves, Eugene managed direct mail, branding and digital marketing projects. Additionally, while a student at the University of Utah, Eugene served as vice president of the Next Generation Korean Americans club and as president of the Utah Collegiate Chapter of the American Marketing Association.
When he’s not at work, Eugene enjoys obstacle marathons, climbing and attempting (how he described it) to play the bass. Eugene would love to backpack through Europe one day, as well as own a 1969 Ford Mustang (think Gone in 60 Seconds). If he could meet one famous person—dead or living—it would be Teddy Roosevelt.
Join us in welcoming David and Eugene to the team in the comments section.
With the lasting presence of the sun—finally!—roads are dry, school is out and there is fun to be had. I’m all for enjoying a fabulous summer, so let’s not ruin the season by getting careless on our commute. Consider this: the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day is coined the “100 Deadly Days of Summer.” The reason for the climb in traffic fatalities is not only due to increased traveling, but largely to a lowered sense of danger while on the roads.
Sure, it’s easy to slow down, stay alert and buckle up during Storm Gandolf, but what about on our way to the BBQ Bash O’ The Year with the windows down, our favorite tunes playing and Aunt Betty’s famous watermelon pie getting consumed by the minute? With the emergence of the sunshine, please don’t let your responsibility to be a safe road user evaporate.
33,000 people are dying nationwide every year in traffic crashes and these tragedies can be prevented. So let’s all live it up this summer by paying attention to the road, pulling over when drowsy, designating a sober driver, slowing down and buckling up.
For summer driving tips by the National Highway Traffic Safety Association, check out their advisory and interactive resource.
Our first blog post dates back to May 2011, and although this wasn’t the official launch date for the blog, we felt that this date called for celebration. It’s the blog’s 2nd birthday! We looked back at the last two years of blog posts and chose some PPBH favorites to share with everyone.
We had to start off with three of our most read blog posts:
How Much Do Ads on YouTube Cost?
How Much Do Ads on Google Cost?
How Much Do Ads on Facebook Cost?
These post were all written by one of our SEO gurus and together, they make up nearly one-fifth of our website’s total pageviews. Not to mention they have the most comments and have some of the highest average times on page. These posts have great content and great SEO.
Whether it was PPBH’s Best Online Videos of 2012 or the 2011 top movies, books and music, we love sharing our top PPBH picks of the year. Marc Stryker has delivered several of these posts over the years. They are fun to read and give you a little insight too.
Advice for Grads:
If you could go back in time, wouldn’t you tell your younger self a few things? We know we would. In “Advice for New Grads: What We Wish We Had Know“, PPBHers give some advice to new graduates in hopes that they will take it into the working world. Directors, partners and staff members from all disciplines explain the things they wish they knew when they graduated.
Tebowing Works for Us:
You may remember that small Tebow fad from the 2011 – 2012 NFL season. Honestly, if you don’t, we may be a little worried about you. In this post we showed off our office Tebowing skills. It sounds silly, but out of all of our blog posts, this post comes in fifth for the most unique views.
5 Reasons We’re Excited to Open a Nevada Office:
In December of last year, Kyle Kubovchik helped us open our Nevada branch. It was an exciting step for our agency and our branch has been growing ever since. In this post, Nevada Director Kyle explains why we were so excited to head south.
Dear Partners, Thanks for the Advice:
In this post from August 2012, Julene Thompson shares some of the best advice she has gotten from the agency’s four partners Chuck, Dave, John and Mike. We feel lucky to be able to receive advice from professionals who have had so much success in this business.
The partners have also written some amazing blog posts that provide great information from their years of experience.
Here are some of them:
Partner Perspective: What You Need to Know About 2013 Marketing Trends
Partner perspective: Old Brands, New Brands and What’s on the Horizon
Partner Perspective: The Relationship Game
Partner Perspective: Does Subliminal Advertising Work?
Puppies and Babies:
Patty Clark recently wrote a post about PPBH’s favorite dogs and it was an instant success. Her post was inspired by the March 2013 post “ Babies Everywhere”. We will never forget the PPBH baby boom of 2012-2013. It’s like Patty said, “puppies and babies sell” and we couldn’t agree more! We love looking at all the little cuties! (Stay tuned for the upcoming “Cute Cats of PPBH” post)
It has been a great two years and we are excited to see all of the great posts that our staff will contribute in the future.
Does the content on your brand’s or company’s social media channels speak to your audiences? We’ve preached against social media for social media’s sake (you know, having a Facebook brand page because everyone has a brand page), but if you’ve determined social media fits into your communication efforts and makes sense for your brand or company, then read on. Here are a few tips to create content, make the most of your content and make sure your content is right for your audiences.
Lacking content for your social media efforts? Repurpose and reuse existing content. Whether it’s from your website or other materials (think presentations, brochures, etc.), always look at it with an eye for repurposing. How else can you make that content work for you on social media? Could it be turned into a poll, fill-in-the-blank post or other?
Still stumped for content? Tie into observances and other timely events and build content around that. Earlier this week was Memorial Day. How could your brand or company tie that into your content? Looking ahead, we have Independence Day and Labor Day. You can even get more granular than that and look into industry- or market-specific observances.
Not sure of the best content for your channels? Experiment. In your daily content calendar, create different types of posts and see what posts perform best (you can measure this through free tools, such as Facebook’s page Insights, as well as through engagement—shares, likes, comments—on the post). If a post doesn’t perform well, take a close look at it and see if you can make some edits or modifications to that type of post to see if it performs better.
Social networks change often. Stay on top of trends. Whether it’s the interface or things like Edgerank, changes are happening often, and it’s your responsibility to stay on top of the changes so you can keep your channels up to date and make the most of changes with your content. Major social media networks have their own blogs (I’ve listed them below) where they discuss upgrades and changes. Online news sites report on these changes, so do your homework and stay up to speed on changes. Some of my favorite sites to read to stay informed are PR Daily and Mashable.
Content creation is an ongoing process. Stay tuned for more tips and ideas for strengthening your social media content in future blog posts.
On May 11th, 12 brave souls from the PPBH team traveled south to Moab. Once there, they split up into two teams of six: Thor’s Angels and Sweet Spirits. Although they were running against each other, both teams had the same goal: Finish the Red Rock Relay without passing out or getting sick.
The Day was off to a great start.
Dave was ready and excited.
Ali and Patty killed it on the first leg.
The Sweet Spirits, minus Ali’s husband Alan, were excited to show off their stripes after running the first three legs.
Kenny has jazz hands because his stripe is on his arm.
It all went down hill from there…metaphorically of course. In reality, it was pretty much up hill the entire way. There were unexpected hills, rowdy competitors and never ending stretches of road, but the team spirit kept us alive and going strong.
In these photos you will see 70 miles of struggle, drive, confusion, joy, exhaustion and pure athleticism.
Just under ten hours after the race began, Dave Smith crossed the finish line and lead the Sweet Spirits down victory lane. The Sweet Spirits came in 32nd out of the 137 teams that ran that day, running just over 9 minute miles on average.
Two hours later, after the Sweet Spirits had grabbed some refreshment and relaxed in the sun, Christie Clark came bolting in to finish the race for Thor’s Angels and the two teams were reunited once again.
It was a long and rewarding day for the 12 PPBHers that participated in the Red Rock Relay. The competition was fierce but when you have great company, everybody wins. Plus everyone got a medal, which is pretty much the same as winning.
Contributed by Kyle Kubovchik
As Zero Fatalities grows in Nevada, more schools, local law enforcement agencies and community and business leaders have asked how they can get involved. They got the chance on May 1st in Reno and May 2nd in Las Vegas, during two Zero Fatalities Ambassador Workshops.
Attendees from law enforcement, engineering, emergency services, and education shared successful strategies, heard victim stories, and even conducted media training. The goal of the workshop was to create Zero Fatalities ambassadors who can become part of the Zero Fatalities movement, spreading these key messages in their communities and at their agencies:
It’s all about coming together to save lives, and Zero Fatalities is a brand the entire state can rally around. Because when we ask ourselves, “What is an acceptable number of traffic fatalities for your family?” the answer is simple: zero.
Thanks and congratulations to all the new ambassadors!
Here are some photos taken at the Reno and Nevada Workshops.
Picture of Lars’ dog, Fern, when she was a puppy.
They say that puppies and babies sell, and after our popular baby blog post, I thought it was time for the PPBH puppies and dogs to shine. Here are stories and pictures of our agency’s cutest dogs.
I am in love with French bulldogs. Everything about them. I got Rogue and Odin (Odie) a year ago on Mother’s Day after months of waiting. I held them when they were only two weeks old and it was love at first sight. Here are some fun facts about my little monsters:
Zipper is a Portuguese water dog puppy whose current hobbies are exuberantly licking the faces of everyone she meets, running down slides, doing tricks and looking for opportunities to steal food off counter tops. This is the face she pulls when you talk to her. It is typically accompanied by a frantically wagging tail.
Vader is a four year old miniature schnauzer. He is a professional cuddler and an expert at getting as close as possible to his favorite people while staring lovingly into their eyes. Due to the uncanny resemblance, he has posed as Mr. T for Halloween pretty much every year. This is the face he pulls when you ask him if he would like a bath. He doesn’t like baths.
Nine bowls of dog food, two times a day is a bit surreal. I’m a dog person. Urban Sheepherder. Dogs are my life and that will never change. I’ve gone from rescuing dogs to breeding my own. You could say excessive and obsessive, but I might be the best dog daddy around.
Copper is cuter than your dog.
We had a fun little two year old Sheltie until about three weeks ago when she swallowed a penny. The vet got it out through surgery, but she was too poisoned to function. We had to put her down. My wife and I are now debating getting another dog, and if so—what kind should we get? Oh yeah, it needs to be smart enough to not eat money.
Barney the basset hound and Stubbs the minpin. (Although Stubbs is convinced he is a basset hound too.) Two of the awesomest puppies around! Barney is our old man who enjoys long naps on the deck, while Stubbs is ever vigilant chasing the squirrels that live in the backyard; and both are trying to be babysitters for the little one.
While kids always crowd around him, he is a little too forward with the lady dogs and fat neighborhood cats. Usually they just sit and stare while he runs laps around them, sniffs and jumps up and down.
These are my babies, Cody, an Australian shepherd mix, and Skoshi, a shitzu. Cody is a big furry bundle of love that got me in some trouble with the law last year. Skoshi is a funny little curmudgeon that makes me laugh every day. I rescued both dogs from Wasatch Humane (now called Utah Animal Adoption). They are the loves of my life and I can’t wait to see them everyday when I go home.
Here’s my dog Hurley. Hurley is a coton du tulear, a breed that used to be bred as circus dogs (he does great tricks!). He is named for the character Hugo “Hurley” Reyes from the TV show Lost. I knew we were meant to be together when I got his papers in the mail and found out we have the same birthday!
I cannot say enough about my boys, they are my comic relief, stress relief and unconditional love. They are brothers, from the same litter and are best friends, rarely are apart and so unique. Atlas is the attention hound and gets jealous when you pay attention to Orion. Orion is very aloof but lovable…on his own terms. Atlas loves to play fetch, and will do so until Orion steals the toy and runs off with it. They love to play in the snow and have puppy play dates with their friends. Atlas is on the right, Orion on the left. I love my boys.
How about a picture with baby and puppy. Best of both worlds. I’ll claim it—Bruno is the best dog that ever lived. He’s the type that can get up and go or just sit and chill. Bruno is very well behaved, which is due to persistent training as a puppy. We walk him without a leash and he sits at every corner, so we don’t have to worry about him running into the road. We can also leave him on the porch unattended. Believe it or not, he will even let the neighbor cat walk by because he knows he will get in trouble if he chases it. Oh, and he’s very gentle with Harrison. We just can’t seem to train him to wipe up his own drool.
Here’s a picture of my dog Benny (black and tan) and my roommate’s dog Naga. Benny tends to prance around (literally) and Naga is a rescue who is currently recovering from a broken femur!
And of course, because everyone couldn’t resist showing off their cute dogs, I got a ton of photos. Here’s a slideshow of all the pictures I got sent. Too cute.
Writing is a big part of my job and almost all PR professionals’ jobs, in fact. Keep these tips in mind to help convey your message clearly and concisely:
Nix the redundant adjectives. I think redundant adjectives are so ingrained in our vernacular that they get inserted in our writing subconsciously. Some of the most flagrant double adjectives that come to my mind include:
What do you think are the most used (or abused) redundant adjective pairs? Tell us in the comments.
Strive for brevity. We’re fighting to get our content in front of our key audiences with a limited amount of time to get our message across. Get the most out of that limited time by keeping your message short and concise.
Lose the jargon. Write to your audience. If your audience isn’t familiar with specific industry jargon, you’re not doing any favors by including it. Write so that your messages are understood. If you can do that with jargon, good. If you can’t, then lose it.
Use the appropriate word. I have seen compliment/complement used interchangeably far too many times. Know the definition and proper use of the word before you insert it in your writing. “Entitled” is also up there on my list of incorrectly used words. Hint: A book or movie is “titled,” not “entitled.”
Write what you mean. Don’t beat around the bush. Write what you mean as straightforward as possible. You don’t want to risk your message getting lost or misunderstood amidst unnecessary sentences and words.
What tips do you have for clear, concise writing? Tell us in the comments.
The problem with bathrooms, beds and vehicles you are driving is that they aren’t convenient places to write things down. The other problem is that they are often the distraction-free spots where your mind starts to race with ideas.
Communicators need ideas on hand and I’ve learned that the best ones choose you when they feel like it, not necessarily when you need them most. They may withhold themselves at an important brainstorm meeting only to leave you fumbling for a napkin and stray crayon at a birthday party later on. So how do you keep the best ideas from slipping away and make sure you are brilliant at your next big brainstorm meeting? Here are a few thoughts.
Make idea lists. This doesn’t need to be complicated. Just choose some type of note-taking method and make idea lists with titles like blog story ideas, public event ideas, project survey question ideas, home project ideas etc. You can make your titles as broad or specific as you want. When you are ready to use your ideas, you can search the list titles. Electronic note-taking applications are the easiest to search and there are several available. Apple’s standard Notes application, Evernote, Noteshelf and Notability are a few.
Write them down when they’re fresh. Like I said before, ideas don’t always come when it’s convenient. Still, it’s important to get them down at the first possible moment. Ideas can come fast but leave just as fast when you are working on too many other things. Don’t worry about writing them perfectly. Just get them down and in the right place. You can refine them later. It’s much better to write down an idea when you’re awake and excited about it than when you feel pressured to come up with it on a tight deadline.
Keep your notebook close. Keep your notebook nearby at all times whether it is your phone, an iPad or a paper notebook. If you still find yourself in places where only napkins are available, take what you can get until you can transfer them to your notebook later.
How do you keep track of your ideas? Let us know in the comments.