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Mary Rice

Mary Rice

iStock_000056378480_LargeWe strive to be a great, creative, inspiring workplace and are honored this year to be recognized by the Salt Lake Tribune as one of Utah’s Top Workplaces in the small business category.

Earning a ranking for this prestigious award is based solely on the results of an employee survey administered by WorkplaceDynamics, LLC, that measures several aspects of workplace culture including Alignment, Education and Connection, just to name a few.

“The Top Workplaces award is not a popularity contest. And oftentimes, people assume it’s all about fancy perks and benefits,” said Doug Claffey, CEO of WorkplaceDynamics. “To be a Top Workplace, organizations must meet our strict standards for organizational health. And who better to ask about work life than the people who live the culture every day – the employees.”

Penna Powers also received special recognition from the Tribune for encouraging “New Ideas.” Salt Lake Tribune writer Rosemary Winters writes – “For an ad agency, empowering employees to share new ideas isn’t just a workplace perk, it’s also an essential piece of the business model.”

We couldn’t agree more. Penna Powers has thrived for over 30 years because CEO and founding partner Chuck Penna’s one rule – “the best idea wins.”

We’re proud to work at an innovative agency and be part of a group that is recognized time and again for being a top-notch place to work. Click here to read more about the Salt Lake Tribune’s Top Workplaces Award and Penna Powers’ innovative approach to communication.

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School is back in session and the change in routine makes it a good time to remind kids and families how to stay safe. To help get the word out and share important safety tips, PPBH and Primary Children’s Hospital recently partnered to host an event called “Safety Saturday” at The Leonardo science and technology museum in downtown Salt Lake City. The event was designed to highlight everything Primary Children’s Hospital does to help keep kids safe. Some of the programs featured included:

We had a fantastic turn out with 35 bloggers attending the event along with their families. Everyone had a wonderful time exploring the kid friendly educational displays provided by Primary Children’s Hospital. A crowd favorite was the seat belt safety display where kids enjoyed drawing their own face on an egg, placing it on a toy car, then watching it smash to pieces to demonstrate what happens when you don’t wear a seat belt. Everyone also enjoyed the melon drop, where cantaloupes were used to simulate what happens if you don’t wear a helmet while riding your bike.

Blogger events have proven to be a great way to help clients reach their target audiences. From large scale events, to smaller, more intimate blogger tours, Q&A sessions and more, PPBH can help clients of all sizes design a blogger event to fit their needs and goals. If you are interested in finding out more about our capabilities, email us at













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The season of love is here. Since we can’t buy all of our blog readers candy and flowers, we’ve decided to tell you how much we all love our jobs. You’re welcome.

Really though, PPBH is a remarkable place to work. We all truly love what we do and what better day than Valentine’s Day to share a little of that love with you? Here are some of the things we love about working at PPBH:

“I love my job is because I get to start with a blank piece of paper every day. We get to create concepts and campaigns that were never here before. Not many people have jobs like that. I feel very lucky.” — Chuck Penna, CEO and founding partner

“I love being able to do something different every day. No two days are the same and it never gets boring around here!” — Crystal McMillan, account coordinator

“I love my job because I work in a collaborative environment, because I get to stay at the forefront of technology and because I have coworkers who do the same. I also love all of the free Harmons food – especially the granola.” — Jason Alleger, digital media planner

“I love my job for its phrenetic pace and constant change, because I get to work with clients’ programs and products that really make a positive difference in people’s lives, the sheer variety of challenges and the limitless communication tools I get to use to address them, and finally, because I get to work with the smartest, funniest, most creative team of people who inspire me every single day!” — Stephanie Miller, public relations director

“I love making a difference in families’ lives by helping people develop safe road behaviors. It’s the best feeling having a teen or parent come up after a presentation and say they are forever changed because of the education they received.” — Lora Hudson, Zero Fatalities outreach coordinator

“I love exploring new frontiers for the agency and our clients, and providing successful solutions.” — Mitch Vice, interactive director

“I love my job because I learn new things every day and I get to be creative. There are always new kinds of problems that give me the opportunity to think of creative solutions. It’s nice to have so many resources available to make the solutions a reality. I also  love my clients. I’ve known some of them long enough that I consider them good friends and mentors.” — Julene Thompson, account manager

“I love my job because of the people I work with. It’s great knowing that you work alongside people with a high standard of excellence who can still find humor in a bear-riding meme.” — Christie Clark, advertising account coordinator

“I love my job because it’s fun to go to work everyday and help solve problems for clients.  It’s great to see them succeed and make connections with their audience.  What’s even better is accomplishing these things alongside really smart, dedicated and motivated people. ” — Marc Stryker, media director

“I love making a client’s image improve. It is so rewarding to know you’ve helped a company create a professional brand. I also love that PPBH enables us to be so involved with the community. It is fun to see something on the news and know you were part of it!” — Christine Menges, advertising director

And I love my job because it is truly a wonderful feeling to wake up every morning excited to go to work and really love what you do. No matter how stressful my job can be at times, I would never trade my co-workers or clients for anything. I also love that I get to work with reporters and editors from every outlet and that I can put my news background to good use. PPBH gives me the best of both worlds and I can’t think of a better place to work.

Happy Valentine’s Day!



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In the ever-changing world of PR, we continually look for new tools and tricks to help our clients reach their target audiences. With so many people seeking news beyond their televisions and newspapers, we’re finding that a simple press release or media advisory may not have the same impact that it used to.

Enter lifestyle bloggers. That’s right, lifestyle bloggers. Don’t call them mommy bloggers because these tech-savvy women (and men!) are so much more than that. These bloggers mean business (literally) and have a trusted voice that reaches hundreds, if not thousands, of dedicated readers and fans.

From fashion and food, to travel, kids, and everything in between, when a blogger writes, posts pictures or endorses a product, service or cause, they reach a captive audience that not only listens, but trusts what they have to say.

Here are some fun facts about bloggers from




At PPBH, we are proud to partner with some of the best, brightest and most influential bloggers in the state. These bloggers have a fantastic local reach, and many are even followed nationally. We have had great success working with bloggers to host special events, blog tours and editorial campaigns for a variety of clients, and we can customize a blogger campaign to help your company or organization reach its target audience. We are excited about many blogger experiences on the horizon, and harnessing their power to support our clients.


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At PPBH, we love to work hard and play even harder. This year we stuck with tradition and closed up shop early last Wednesday for the fifth annual PPBH ‘Bowlffet.’

What is the ‘Bowlffet’ you ask? Well… we take over FatCats in Salt Lake City, don our tackiest bowling shirts, strap on our shoes and gorge ourselves on pizza and breadsticks.

This year between gutter balls and strikes, we thoroughly enjoyed the pre-Thanksgiving carb load, music and some of us even busted a move (you know who you are). We also learned that some PPBHers are awesome bowlers, some could use a bit more practice and some should definitely keep their day jobs.

The ‘Bowlffet’ was a huge success and is definitely a PPBH tradition we hope to keep for years to come.


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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! No… not Christmas—the annual PPBH Halloween party!

We stuck with tradition and tested the cooking skills of our resident PPBH “chefs.” The coveted best chili prize went to Creative Director Erico Bisquera (dressed as PSY), who shared his own rendition of Gangnam Style in celebration. Tyson Holtkamp and I tied for second place for our meaty and spicy concoctions.

As far as the costume contest goes… the photos probably speak for themselves.

2012 PPBH Halloween costume contest winners:

  • Tyson Holtkamp as Twisted Sister’s Dee Snider – Scariest
  • Bobby Brinton as “sexy sax man” – Funniest
  • Stacy Johnson as a jelly fish- Most Creative
  • Topher Page as “scary bald guy” (or himself in 30 years) – Runner up in all three categories

We also held our annual pumpkin cakewalk throughout the day. When scary music played over the intercom everyone scrambled to find a hidden pumpkin with a number on it. Amazingly, no one was injured in the chaos. We are all still pretty amazed by how fast PPBHers can move when candy and prizes are involved.

Until next year!

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When I left news for PR (aka the “dark side”) a year and a half ago, little did I know what I was really getting myself into. Sure, I knew I’d be writing press releases, holding media briefings and coordinating with news outlets. And like many naive newsroom veterans who have made the jump to PR, I thought I knew everything there was to know about the profession. I mean, come on… this was going to be easy. I’d been dealing with PR people for the better part of a decade. I knew what worked, what a newsroom was looking for and frankly, how to avoid many of the irritating and annoying behaviors that drove me nuts when I was working in news.

Newsflash. PR is so much more than simply working with the media. If your idea of work is an easy 8-to-5 shift, schmoozing clients and sending out a press release once in a while, this is the wrong career for you. While PR involves all of the things I just listed, that is really only 20 percent of the job. The majority of your time working in PR will be spent on comprehensive planning and research. It involves early mornings, late nights, working from home, lots of meetings and to dispel any myths… yes… even sometimes you get to work on holidays and weekends (insert shocked gasp). Most importantly, PR involves teamwork.

These days, I’ve officially traded breaking news for brainstorming. In fact, brainstorming is one of my favorite parts of the job, and watching a communication plan come to life is even better. One of the amazing things I have found at PPBH is that because we are a full-service advertising, interactive, public involvement and public relations agency, I get to work side-by-side with the best of the best across all facets of the communication industry. I cannot tell you how refreshing and exciting it is to work with people from every department as we devise plans and solutions for our clients. Because we involve so many people with different backgrounds and specialties, our team is able to come up with unique and creative ways to spotlight our clients that I would never have been able to think of on my own. Sure, PR isn’t what I thought it was going to be when I left the newsroom—it’s even better than I thought it would be.

Other lessons learned since joining the “dark side”
1. Event planning is not for the faint of heart. Sometimes it will rain on your beautiful outdoor event. Sometimes the vendors don’t all deliver. You have to just learn to roll with the punches… and it sure feels great when you get fantastic news coverage despite the craziness behind the scenes.

2. Press conferences are still boring and media generally doesn’t like them. There are certain scenarios that call for a press conference (e.g., crisis, death, etc.) but other than that, it’s really best to steer away from them.

3. I no longer need the sounds of blaring police scanners to comfort me and I actually enjoy listening to myself think. My migraines have mysteriously disappeared and my hearing has also improved. I do find myself still saying 10-4 from time to time, though.

4. In PR, every day is a job interview. Having an “off” day is really not an option. That’s not to say that you need to be fake and happy all the time. But you do need to always bring your “A game” to the table. Your clients deserve that.

5. I still love breaking news and I get an adrenaline rush whenever a big story comes on. The difference now is that once I confim that one of my clients is not involved… I enjoy watching it from the comfort of my couch.


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We’re thrilled to announce the addition of a new client to our roster: Harmons, Your Neighborhood Grocer®.

PPBH will be providing all brand communications, creative development, public relations, social media and digital services, media planning and placement, and event support for Harmons Grocery. We have lots of great ideas and planning in the works, and can’t wait to show you what we’ve got up our sleeve.

In the meantime, we’ve become quite fanatic (many of us, also, have been lifelong Harmons fans) about the Harmons’ selection, possibly verging on obsessed. Next time you’re at your local Harmons, see if you can resist this list of our favorite delectable treats.

  • Bob’s Burgers with some blue cheese is essentially a “half-pound of heaven,” according to Managing Partner John Haynes. The only thing you’ll be able to utter before stuffing your face is a hearty, “Get in my belly!”
  • The best produce around. The PPBH vegetarian on staff can vouch for that!
  • We indulge in their delicious fancy cheeses, with pinkies raised, of course.
  • The freshly made granola makes eating healthy seem deliciously sinful. We even have it straight from the source that Bob Harmon eats this granola every morning on the way to work.
  • We may have taken more than our fair share of free samplings, which usually results in buying whatever it was we sampled. Seriously, everything at Harmons is so good!
  • Hands down, the best bakery and gelato in Utah. It’s like having France and Italy right at your doorstep.
  • The green onion cheese ball with almonds is huge hit for us around Thanksgiving and Christmas.
  • The. Best. Guacamole. Ever.
  • Although it’s not in the food category, our employees gave an all-around thumbs up to Harmons’ flowers. Media Planner Jason Alleger attests that the last bouquet he bought from Harmons lasted three weeks.

We’re sincerely crazy about Harmons. The quality of the food and stores blows us away, and we’re proud to be their new partners.

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    PPBH honors Tyson, who joined the firm as an intern, for his five years of awesome service.

    Tyson and Erik are honored for their five years of awesomeness at PPBH.

Two more PPBHers joined the five-year club last week. Tyson Holtkamp started at PPBH as an intern and has become one of the best media producers around. Interactive Developer Erik Phillips is pretty much the smartest programmer any of us know. We are so lucky to have these great guys on the PPBH team. Thanks to both of you for five great years at PPBH. Here’s to many more!

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