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It’s Time for the East-West Shrine Game!

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If you know us at all, you know that one of our busiest times of year is “Shrine Game Time,” and it’s starting now! Tickets for the East-West Shrine Game go on sale Friday, December 1, and we have been gearing up for this game for months already.

The Shrine Game is the longest running college all-star football game in the United States, and this is its 93rd year! The game is driven by the desire to support Shriners Hospitals for Children in its mission to help children in need of expert medical care. More than 1 million children have benefited from Shriners Hospitals’ unique way of providing hope and healing, regardless of the families’ ability to pay for services.

Each year, we accompany the players and coaches to the Shriners Hospital Tampa so they can meet some of the patients, play with the kids, dance, sign footballs, play basketball, and in general have a ton of fun. This day shows them why the East-West Shrine Game is “More Than Just a Game.”

Click here for tickets to the January 20, 2018 game.

Make a Charitable Donation in Lieu of a Gift

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During the holidays, we want to give gifts to our clients that resonate with them and show how much we appreciate their business. They spend a lot of money with us, so they should be shown some sort of gratitude. Right?

Finding the Right Gift

For some people, they love to shop and know the right gift for their clients. Others think of it as simply checking another box—a way of doing business. Some don’t mind spending a little extra during the holiday, while others are a little more budget conscious.

The differences in attitudes and approaches to gift giving can affect the company’s image. Here’s a good example. There is a whole team of representatives inside a company and they have their own list of clients. When December comes, some representatives like to give expensive gifts, such as concert tickets or food and wine baskets, while others are more frugal with their budgets and give a box of candies and nice card. Both are thoughtful and the right thing to do—for the individual—but not the company.

The problem with inconsistent giving is that one client working with multiple reps in the company might get offended by their actions. It’s an unintentional consequence. There are so many different personalities in a company that getting everyone on the same page when giving gifts may seem like a monumental task.

Be More Thoughtful This Year

One way you can overcome the pitfalls of inconsistency and disparate corporate messaging is to pick one or more charities and give donations in your clients’ name. But, there are some things to be aware of when getting everyone on the “same page.”

 Will your clients be receptive to a charitable donation?

There’s a lot of tradition during the holidays, and giving a gift is at the center of it. It almost seems selfish to give a donation, but it really isn’t, especially if you choose a charity that is suited for your client. So, pick a local charity or a national one committed to a cause that fits best. And, in order to avoid looking crass or cheap, don’t indicate the dollar amount in the card to your client.

A Consistent Corporate Message

It’s easy for employees to forget that the physical gift they are purchasing is actually coming from the company. This act of giving represents the company culture and messaging. It’s important that the gifts reflect the company’s mission and vision.

Giving gifts to your clients is a professional way to show that you care about them. It would be horrible to think that they had a negative experience from receiving a gift during the holidays. A great way to avoid this is through charitable giving. Who knows, maybe it will catch on. Now, isn’t that a wonderful thought?

Spotlight: Shorecrest Preparatory School Video

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Shorecrest Preparatory School is a pretty magical place. When they hired us to create a video to showcase the school, we were excited. We have worked with Shorecrest for years on projects ranging from public relations to ad campaign design, so we are very familiar with their brand, the campus, and the mission of the school. We’ve also created 30 second commercial spots for digital advertising and movie theater pre-roll for the school, which helped us to brainstorm some really good ideas for this special piece.

We wanted to use this video to tell the story of the school and its culture, not just give information about programs, etc. We decided to use a more cinematic approach, with the script reading more like a poem than a brochure. We developed the script first, though we were constantly visualizing corresponding shots that would support the narrative. We started with Shorecrest’s tagline, “Be more.” We thought about what it means to “be more,” especially in the context of the education and opportunities that the school provides. We used Shorecrest’s overarching theme – Choice. Support. Balance. – as a guide for our narrative.

Once the script was complete, we started working on the story board and a detailed shot list, and then it was time to start scheduling the shoots in the classrooms, athletic department, and the outdoor classroom. This was a logistics problem that Shorecrest’s marketing director tackled perfectly. We were able to capture all the footage that we needed, plus some!

Storytelling like this is meant to be evocative. The video is certainly informative in its own way, but we aimed to capture people at a more subconscious level – in other words, we were trying to pull heart strings. In doing so, we leave more of an imprint on people’s minds – when you evoke emotion, the impression is lasting. We think that we achieved this with the Shorecrest video. The hard work, creativity, dedication, and open-mindedness of the school’s culture is truly highlighted in this piece. See for yourself!

Telling stories is one of Pinstripe Marketing’s specialties, especially when it comes to video. Drop us a line if you’re interested in telling your story; whether it’s culture, information, interview, etc, we can help.

Et Cultura Festival – Interactive Sessions, Music, Art, Film, Craft

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Et Cultura Festival wrapped up last week, and we wanted to share just a few of the interesting things we saw and experienced over the five-day festival’s myriad activities. It was definitely a whirlwind week and since we do public relations for the festival, the few weeks before were pretty hectic as well, but we had a great time and we’re already looking forward to next year.

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Some of the highlights that we were able to catch:

SEEDS interactive sessions at the Morean Center for Clay were phenomenal. There were several presentations throughout the day, all related to gardening, plant-based diet, sustainable living. It was incredibly interesting and enlightening, plus some of the presentations were interactive. One presenter, Kim Campbell, Director of Recipe Development and Culinary Education for PlantPure, Inc., even did a recipe demonstration where she prepared 3 giant pressure cookers full of Ethiopian butternut squash and lentils with brown rice. She made enough to go around the entire room, and the whole room smelled incredible. Not only that, the dish tasted amazing, so we are definitely going to try making some recipes like this in the future.

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Another highlight of the SEEDS interactive sessions included live gardening demonstrations by some of St. Pete’s local farmers, which sparked some of the Pinstripe family to go home and start gardens. The weather was perfect and the crowd was thick for these sessions, which means a lot of people are interested in growing food.

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A panel discussion called “Prescribing Food as Medicine” provided some fascinating insights into how diet directly affects physical health and illness. One fascinating case in particular was a diabetic patient who was very sick changed their diet to plant-based and no longer had to use insulin. Other panelists discussed the affects of diet on heart disease, obesity, and even cancer.

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Lots of interested folks at the SEEDS interactive sessions all day long.

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The Future City interactive sessions at Station House featured a wide variety of topics focused on economic development, supporting local businesses, affordable housing, social justice and more.

Small Is Big discussed the importance of championing locally owned and operated businesses and using entrepreneurs, citizen volunteers, events and artists for community development as well as an economic driver.

Et Cultura St. Pete

What Is “Affordable” Housing These Days? featured speakers representing the city, developers, the tiny house movement and others. The discussion highlighted the needs for a variety of places to call home that we can afford and want to live in as our city grows, continues to attract young talent, and needs to support a service-oriented workforce and address the changing needs of an aging population.

Et Cultura St Pete

Perhaps the most interesting discussion on Thursday was Inclusive Cities featuring social justice advocate, Weldon Angelos. The panel discussed ideas for building a more equitable system in our community and beyond for citizens who break the law, serve their time, and want to re-enter society. Weldon Angelos story is fascinating and infuriating. He was sentenced a mandatory 55 years in prison for selling a few pounds of marijuana while possessing a firearm – a sentence so extreme that his judge, unable to go below the mandatory minimum, called on the president to commute Weldon’s sentence. Barring such a presidential commutation, taxpayers would spend more than $1.5 million to keep Weldon behind bars until he was 80 years old. Weldon’s sentencing provoked unprecedented public outcry. Twenty-nine former judges and prosecutors filed a ‘friend of the court’ brief beseeching Weldon’s sentencing judge to declare the sentence unconstitutional. At sentencing, Judge Paul G. Cassell called Weldon’s punishment “unjust, cruel, and even irrational,” comparing it to much shorter federal sentences given to repeat child rapists and airplane hijackers. Judge Cassell wrote a 67-page opinion urging President Bush to commute Weldon’s sentence to 18 years or less. Unfortunately, none of these efforts proved fruitful until recently, when President Obama commuted his sentence– after Weldon served 13 years in prison.

You can see more of Weldon’s story here:

On Friday we were fortunate enough to join a group of educators for the RADICAL SCHOOLS interactive sessions. The keynote speaker was Geoffrey Canada, who flew down from Harlem, New York City to discuss his work with the Harlem Children’s Zone and the philosophy of his educational approach. He and his colleagues seek to change the lives of inner-city kids, prevent youth violence and foster community development through education reform. The model encourages educators to meet students where they are and use their own interests and needs to create active participation in their education and future.

One really cool element of the RADICAL SCHOOLS interactive sessions was a portable skate and BMX half pipe. They set it up right in the middle of 2nd St between 1St Ave and Central in downtown St. Pete, closed off that street, and had professional BMX riders and skateboarders doing tricks. It was definitely a good way to get every kid’s attention, and a huge crowd of both children and adults gathered to see the talented athletes doing cool tricks and defying gravity.

et cultura radical schools event public relations

Of course, we also caught a few of the concerts, films, art shows and the makers market – Et Cultura is a week of what is best in St. Pete!

Our public relations efforts for Et Cultura included media relations and leveraging our relationships with local television stations to book morning shows for Et Cultura founders and other interesting interviewees. It’s a win-win situation, as the hosts get to meet great people who are making cool things happen in our community, and our clients have the opportunity to discuss their events and draw more attendance to their events on television shows with thousands of viewers across the Tampa Bay area. Next time you have an event or news-worthy business happening, get in touch with Pinstripe and we can help you get the word out to our community, both in television and in print.

Spotlight: Kokolakis Logo Design, Head Shots, Video and Stationery

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Kokolakis Contracting is one of those clients that we just can’t wait to see. We realized this when we did head shots with a whole group of the Tarpon Springs office staff, including president Joe Kokolakis, at the beautiful old Florida Brewing Co. building (currently home of the Swope Rodante law firm) in Ybor City. We had a blast! Afterwards, the whole group went out to dinner and insisted that we come along. I guess that makes us part of the family.

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President Joseph Kokolakis portrait.

That was a great start to the relationship, in which we have re-envisioned their logo, created new stationery, completed head shots and currently we are working on a video for their new website, coming soon. We didn’t print the safety vests and hard hats, but as you can see in the photo above, they look great!

First we tackled the logo. They wanted to keep the same general idea but just update and modernize the logo. So, we took the original logo and reinvented it. The main thing that we really wanted everyone to buy into was a new, more modern color palette. It was definitely a departure from their old logo and the industry in general, but we thought it looked great with the bold lines of their logo and font. In the end, we won – they chose the bold color palette over the traditional blues and grays. They seem very happy with their choice and are certainly emblazoning it upon everything they can.

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kokolakis contracting logo design

Once we completed the logo, stationery was next. They chose a fairly classic look, and used Moo.com to print some of the business cards. These cards are super thick and have a beautiful orange-red layer in the center that you can see from the side of the card – the perfect complement to their bold card design. We printed the stationery in spot color with local printer, Lightning, because that orange-red just needed to be “spot” on. It was a tough color to match digitally and we wanted it to really pop and be true to their brand.

This was a really great project to work on and we are proud of the results, plus we added a cool group of people to our list of friends. Many thanks to J. Kokolakis for a great experience.

Shoot us an email if you need help with head shots, video, new logo, and print work. We would love to help make your company look sharp.

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