Blog Archives

Marc Stryker

If you’re a Seth Godin disciple, you know about the power of marketing to your best customers – not a wide, mass audience, but that niche audience who is more likely to find you interesting and remain a loyal customer. It’s about standing out as a remarkable purple cow that builds a tribe and avoids being a meatball sundae.

So can we apply that principle to that most traditional of traditional media – radio? Of course we can. Radio gets a bad rap these days.  Some will tell you that people no longer listen to radio – they either use the latest iPod, subscribe to XM Radio, Pandora, Spotify, YouTube or surprise, the Justin Timberlake-backed newly revamped MySpace. While it’s true that terrestrial radio faces the same disrupting technologies like everything else (although 90 percent of Utahns A18+ still listen during a given week), it’s also true that radio, truly successful radio, is nothing else than about building a loyal tribe of listeners.

So good media research will tap into this knowledge. And that’s why we don’t just look at a basic radio audience ranker against A25-54, pick the top five stations and call it a day. When it’s time to tap into a loyal, engaged listening audience, we look at how efficient a station can deliver that audience. While loading in local Utah qualitative Scarborough data and evaluating a station’s social media presence, we also look at something called audience composition. We used this term in a previous blog post about the magazine industry, but it applies also to radio. We ask, how much of a given radio station’s audience is in my tribe? Is my customer more likely to be a Radio From Hell follower or a Morning Zoo junkie? A Browser or a Hannitzied rabble-rouser? Combined with original online content and the austere science of a digital platform that can profile and find your tribe, correctly tapping into local radio’s inherent fan-base can efficiently draw new and returning customers to the purple-ness of your cow.


Share: Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Tweet about this on Twitter

“Write things worth reading or do things worth writing.” These aspiring words from Benjamin Franklin printed on the back of my business card serve as a daily aim.

When you have news—a new and truly revolutionary product to introduce to the world; a mind-blowing merger; or are on one side or the other of a controversial topic—opportunities seems endless. But, what about the more typical scenario, the one when this news well is tapped and there is no ‘big’ news story in the near future? It’s time to flex that creative muscle to capture attention and remain relevant.

Five areas I like to start with for planning:
1. Supplement statistics: Find an interesting stat or two and then add some interesting information of how your cause, product or service supports or supplants it.

2. Survey says: Create an online survey, take a poll or get out and do some ‘man-on-the-street’ interviews. Report the results in a tip sheet, news release, infographic or as a video that can be used in either traditional or social media channels.

3. Participate in timely conversations: Take advantage of what’s trending in the headlines. Have your experts provide comment and analysis on timely topics that localizes a national trend or takes a local angle and grows it to have wider appeal for a national audience.

4. Celebrate anniversaries: Take stock of national observances and anniversaries and tie into these with information and calls to action.

5. Share the spotlight: There is often greater interest and value in the voice of many. Partner with complementary but noncompeting companies, organizations or interest groups in your media outreach and events.

What angles have sparked news stories for you? Tell us in the comments.

Share: Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Tweet about this on Twitter

Contributed by Michael Penna

I’ve been at PPBH for over four months now, and in that time, I have learned so many new aspects of the advertising industry. One aspect that stands out in my mind is professionalism in the workplace. When it comes to cultivating and maintaining professionalism in the office, keep in mind these three points:

1. Grammar rules still apply to internal emails.
I’ve had my fair share of casual jokes and conversations in the office, but when it comes down to being professional I’m talking about something as simple as sending an email to a co-worker. The reason why I see this becoming a growing problem is because we are adapting to the social media alphabet, by this I mean not using punctuation or capitalization, etc. I can vouch for myself that when I first started at the agency I was sending emails without capitalization or complete sentences and wasn’t second guessing what I had sent until I began hearing back from people telling me that you need to take a close look and proofread every email you send out.

2. You are the product, so be proud of the work you do.
As the months rolled on, I began working on quarterly and annual spreadsheets that have dozens, or even hundreds, of projects and figures where the smallest mistake can throw off your budget and even get you in trouble with your client. When I first started working on spreadsheets I had the same problem with a lack of preciseness. I realized that I have to take my time and proof every task I do.

3. Job memos are not dead.
When I first began opening jobs and typing up job memos, I would do them as fast as I could using my own opinion of what I wanted to see in the memo. What I didn’t realize was that I am writing the memo for my creative team so I need to think like they would and imagine what they need to see in a memo so I get the right creative components to make the campaign a success.

So, as you go about your day today, remember these tips: take your time with every task, and think through the task from every angle, from the client to the creative.


Michael Penna is an intern in PPBH’s advertising department. He is a senior at the University of Utah and will graduate this spring with a degree in marketing. 

Share: Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Tweet about this on Twitter

Contributed by Lauren Soderberg

I think we’ve all been there… the moment where you finally find the job posting. The one that seems tailor-made for your skillset, hopes and dreams, etc. Or something like that. Your heart palpitates as you contemplate your approach, because you know that you’re going to have some major competition for this position. In the past, it was all about the one-two punch of a cover letter and a standard-issue resume. However, you really, really want this job. So how do you stand out in a positive way? Do you send a traditional resume? Or a video resume? Should it be scented?

The advent of interactive technologies has created personal marketing opportunities that have previously been unavailable. Almost anyone can create a website, blog or online portfolio that showcases her skills. Twitter pages, Pinterest boards and Instagram feeds can be created. With all of these avenues of self-promotion, it becomes difficult to know which methods are appropriate to implement when applying for a job. For me, the overarching question has become, “Is the traditional resume becoming antiquated in the modern workplace?

I decided to tap into the PPBH brain trust to garner some helpful insights. Weighing in today are Dave Smith, managing partner; Justin Smart, public involvement director; and Marc Stryker, media director. Here’s what they had to say:

The traditional resume is still relevant, though its role is changing.
A resume provides a quick glance into a person’s job experience, background and education, which Smith remarks is advantageous when narrowing the field for potential interviewees. Smart states that he feels a resume will always be necessary in a written format because it demonstrates an applicant’s ability to organize information and establish professionalism. However, merely having a resume may not be enough. Stryker sees it as a piece of the pie, rather than the whole pie.

Presentation is paramount.  
The consensus from my three experts is that presentation is EVERYTHING. While relevant experience and qualifications are also integral, the way those elements are presented could make or break your chance for an interview. All three experts suggest taking the time to consider the company you want to interview with and ensuring that all formatting, spelling, grammar and layout elements are perfect. Don’t be afraid to incorporate elements like an info graphic or visual chart, but make sure that said additions are pertinent and cohesive. When appropriate, branch out creatively with other tools (website, video presentation, online portfolio, flair, etc.) but make sure that they are professional and targeted. Use them as a support to your resume, not a replacement.

In sum, the beloved resume will live on… but in a (hopefully) more fancy form.


Lauren Soderberg spent three years at PPBH in its public involvement department and  has spent six years working in the ad industry. She currently plays mom to a toddler and writes about topics ranging from politics (rarely) to fashion (mostly) on her two blogs: and She also likes puppies and wishes she could be a ballerina. Still.



Share: Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Tweet about this on Twitter

Contributed by Patty Clark

Pi Day is by far the best made-up holiday. It easily beats out Star Wars Day (May the Fourth… be with you), unbirthdays, Groundhog Day and Festivus. If you’re unfamiliar with Pi Day, reach back to your early high school math classes to remember that the numerical value of π, or pi, is 3.14. Hence, we celebrate our glorious overconsumption of baked goods today, March 14.

Here are some ways to celebrate:

  • Eat some good old-fashioned pie at 1:59 p.m. (3.14159….).
  • Curl up with a good read of the book, Life of Pi, or watch the movie. Both are really enjoyable and will help you understand how endless pi really is.


Today, let us eat pie and be merry. Tomorrow, beware the Ides of March.

Share: Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Tweet about this on Twitter

Contributed by Jane Putnam

I’m an avid, devoted iPhone user and it literally never leaves my side, even when I sleep (I know I’m not alone—I’m sure most PR professionals do the same thing). As the digital revolution continues, new apps are popping up all the time and there are many great apps out there that help me, and thousands of other PR managers, do our jobs better. Here are few that top my list as a PR manager.

Facebook’s Pages Manager (available for iPhone and Android): This app allows page admins to check activity, view insights and respond and post on a page, all from your phone. Simple, easy-to-use, on-the-go access is imperative for any PR professional, whether you’re a community manager or just keeping an ear to the ground to monitor conversation. This app, separate from the standard Facebook for iPhone version, lets you “act” as your page, so you never worry about which account you’re posting from.

Dropbox (available for iPhone and Android): Dropbox is a cloud-based file sharing and storing service, and the app lets you take your documents, files and pictures—and everything else you have in your Dropbox—with you. You can also grant access to documents to your team members, which is great for version control and sharing documents. According to its website, more than 100 million people worldwide use Dropbox.

Pulse (available for iPhone and Android): I’m a fairly new user of this app—but it comes very highly recommended (including in a recent Media Bistro article, “10 Great Apps for PR Professionals”), and so far, I love it. Pulse aggregates into one place the blogs, magazines, newspapers and social networks you regularly track and read. Pulse is quick to read, easy to stay up on coverage and simple to share. As an added benefit, Pulse is both web- and mobile-based, so you can use it on your computer and your phone.

Hootsuite (available for iPhone, Android and Blackberry): Hootsuite’s social media management app helps corral your various channels and networks into one place. You first need a Hootsuite account, but that’s free too, so create your account online at, add your channels for tracking and you’re good to go. As your social media needs grow, consider Hootsuite’s Pro- and Enterprise-level accounts, which both charge a fee, but are well worth it. One downside to Hootsuite is the inability to @tag a Facebook user/page from its interface, so you have to publish those posts directly in Facebook (though, I did read on Hootsuite’s site that it’s aware of the desire for this and is looking into it).


What are your favorite apps for your smartphone?

Share: Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Tweet about this on Twitter

Contributed by Patty Clark
Advertising can often be filled with industry lingo and terminology. If the differences between an art director and designer have ever confused you, here is a quick explanation of their differences.

While the definitions of an art director and designer will vary from agency to agency, there are a few basic differences between the two.

Many use the term art director to define any designer that also has advertising experience. Here at PPBH, we have art directors, designers and production designers, and differentiate between all three within an advertising context.

Chuck Penna, founding partner of the company, says all art directors need to be excellent designers first. Designers are experts at making something look good. They understand what white space, composition or designing within a grid mean.

Art directors usually have more experience. They not only make things look good, they design according to a strategy. They are concerned with the messaging and concept. They also often guide designers to help them accomplish the art director’s vision.

Eric Larson, senior art director at PPBH, says a designer concentrates on how something looks, while an art director concentrates on what something says visually.

How do you differentiate between art directors and designers?

Share: Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Tweet about this on Twitter

We don’t know if it’s the Nutri Grain Bars or something in the water but for the last nine months at PPBH there have been babies everywhere. Please allow us to introduce our newest additions.


Kyrah Lou Ezola

Born Feb. 6, 2013 at 3:57 p.m. | 7 pounds, 6 ounces | 20.5 inches
“Kyrah Lou is an awesomely feisty little lady who, even at 3 weeks old, hardly ever stops moving – except for when she is asleep! She has mastered getting her way and making everyone love her already, even our dogs.”  – Krystal Ezola, mom and receptionist


Caden Edward Alleger
Born Jan. 28, 2013 at 8:58 a.m. | 5 pounds, 14 ounces | 19 inches
“Caden started as a little angel, but has now transformed into a larger angel with vocal cords. His hobbies include looking at lights, waving his arms and the occasional smile.”  – Jason Alleger, dad and digital media planner


Bodie Thomas Bleak
Born Jan. 10, 2013 at 6:24 a.m. | 6 pounds, 6 ounces | 19 inches
“Baby Bodie is growing and changing every day. He is beginning to express himself so much with his smiles and facial movements. He has become best buds with our dog Woody and they just love to hang out with each other. Or better said, Woody likes to sit on him; we will say to keep him warm.”  – Jeff Bleak, dad and outreach coordinator


Harrison Whitney Brozo
Born Dec. 11, 2012 at 6:30 p.m. | 7 pounds, 3 ounces | 20 inches
“Harrison is a chill, laid-back little man who knows what he wants. He has mastered the art of communication—feed me. The ladies are already lined up, but mom says, ‘no dating at least until you can hold your own head up.’”  – Britni Brozo, mom and advertising account manager


Audrey Mae Putnam
Born July 18, 2012 at 7:42 p.m. | 8 pounds, 1 ounce | 19.5 inches
“Seven-month-old Audrey is just about the happiest baby you’ll ever meet. Her current hobbies include bouncing in her jumper and perfecting the army crawl. She enjoys walks at the park and shopping with Mom. Speaking of Mom, her iPhone regularly runs out of space due to her inability to stop snapping pics of cute Miss Audrey.”  – Jane Putnam, mom and public relations account manager


Jonah Samuel Brinton
Born June 5, 2012 at 11:11 p.m. | 6 pounds, 6 ounces | 20 inches
“Little Jonah is getting so big! He’s already fragging newbs and racking up headshots galore online. Now, if we could only get him to sleep through the night…”  – Bobby Brinton, dad and senior copywriter


Share: Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Tweet about this on Twitter