Blog Archives

Brian Shaw

Sure, the name Penna Powers may leave you scratching your head, but we’re pretty confident you’ve seen our work. And isn’t that what’s important? We believe so. That’s why we put our efforts into gaining recognition for our clients—and why we’re one of the top ad agencies in the Nevada Book of Lists.

Admittedly, we are somewhat new to Nevada. But we’ve been building brands in Utah for over 30 years, so we’ve come to your state with plenty of experience. And we’re putting that experience to work for our Nevada clients. Just take a look at what we’ve been doing. Then, give us a call. We’d love to start a conversation about you.

Protect yourself against a citation and a potential crash by learning the laws and sharing the road. In this campaign, we helped Zero Fatalities demonstrate that road respect is a two way street.

You don’t want to find yourself on the wrong side of being impaired. This video reminds Nevadans that if you don’t find a sober ride, the police will find one for you.

With this hilarious video, we helped Zero Fatalities remind Nevada that there is no shame in being the designated, sober driver. Plan ahead and don’t drive impaired.

With this campaign, we helped show that getting health coverage isn’t just something you can afford to do, but that it’s something you can’t afford not to do.

A continuation of the campaign, this ad highlighted a different demographic with the same message: You can’t afford to not be covered.

A continuation of the campaign, this ad highlighted a different demographic with the same message: You can’t afford to not be covered.

Working with Zero Fatalities yet again, we ran this video to reinforce the idea that careless driving doesn’t just affect one person. In this video you can see how more than one life is changed forever in a tragic story.

Motorcyclists aren’t always the easiest people to reach, but we worked with Zero Fatalities to clearly say one thing: If you want to live to ride your motorcycle another day, then ride safe and make Zero Fatalities your goal.

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Vegas800Sometimes it takes little people with big ideas to make a splash in the marketing world and sometimes those ideas will ultimately lead to the creator having a day dedicated to them posthumously and sometimes the projects that seemed insignificant at the time land on the National Register of Historic Places.

It doesn’t happen often and before Betty Willis’ idea struck her in 1959, the Las Vegas Valley had never seen anything like it. In fact, we still haven’t. Betty Willis, who passed away in April at age 91, is an icon in Las Vegas and her project is an even bigger icon. In Las Vegas, one-time landmarks are imploded at least a couple times a decade but Willis’ still stands… most times with dozens of tourists snapping shots of each other in front of it.

Even if you don’t recognize her name, you’ve seen Willis’ work – it has defined Las Vegas for five decades. It’s on postcards, T-shirts, magnets, lighters; you name it. She crafted silver dollars with letters inside that read “Welcome” on top (the silver dollars signifying the state motto, Nevada, the Silver State) with a diamond-shaped sign below that says “To Fabulous Las Vegas Nevada”.

Sound familiar? Thought so.

One of our favorite features of the sign? The flip side. We’re pretty darn sure it’s the first prominent traffic-safety message in the entire state. It reads,“Drive Carefully; Come Back Soon”. We at Penna Powers applaud Willis for thinking about safety! “The fact that everyone loves that sign and its design after all these years is a testament to Betty’s talent,” Steve Sisolak, a Clark County commissioner recently told NBC news. “There is probably no bigger Las Vegas icon than that sign.”

There are zillions of advertising firms in the state, yet the sign designer took it upon herself to develop a genius piece of artwork. There are no copyrights to the sign and Willis never made a dime off her world-famous creation which, compared to the multi-million dollar contract for the creators of “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” campaign, makes Willis’ work even more astounding.

Marketing and advertising agencies come in all shapes and sizes. Gone are the days of Betty Willis, now it takes a creative team effort to draw up a successful campaign. And that is why Betty Willis will always be so special to the Entertainment Capital of the World.

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Vegas Stamp 800Penna Powers has offices in two VERY different markets – Salt Lake City and Las Vegas. Salt Lake is known for its snowy mountains and religious people, whereas Las Vegas is notorious for its hot desert climate and is called Sin City. To showcase our Las Vegas office we’ve set up this guided tour. Enjoy! The Nevada office is surrounded by palm trees and waterfalls. And inside are some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet.

Penna Powers Las Vegas








When you walk in the door, you’re immediately overwhelmed by the size and décor.

Penna Powers Las Vegas Entry









We proudly support UNLV and oftentimes partner with them for internships. Plus, it gives us a reason to hang their annual calendar.

Penna Powers Las Vegas UNLV 2









We’re on the phone with our Salt Lake office. A lot.

Penna Powers Las Vegas Phone









Our outreach team is professional and has a lot of success at events giving out promo items.

Penna Powers Las Vegas Outreach









A sweeping view of one of the offices, featuring the office clown.

Penna Powers Las Vegas Office









Our recreational activity of choice. The current record is seven perfect putts in a row.

Penna Powers Las Vegas Golf









Thanks for joining us on this tour, and feel free to stop by the Las Vegas office anytime, especially if you think you can beat our putting record!

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I don’t know how many times my cohorts at the Las Vegas Review-Journal grumbled that I was headed to the dark side when I accepted a public relations position three years ago.

The dark side? Is it really that bad?

The dark side is a term used to describe public relations professionals because in many journalists’ minds PR folks are hired to be obstacles, to cover up corruption, to put their own “spin” on an issue rather than speak the full truth.

Here’s a quick example and one that taught me my first lesson in PR–don’t give a negative story legs:

As a traffic columnist, I called up the airport communications office after witnessing and experiencing firsthand traffic attendants’ boorish behavior toward motorists picking up passengers.

The PIO, a former colleague at the paper, returned the call and asked the make and color of my vehicle and the date and time I was at the airport, etc. It became clear what he was doing–an investigation into whether I was there and in the wrong. He wasn’t willing to provide the information requested.

A week later, when the results of the my-car-at-the-airport investigation were released, my potentially mundane column suddenly became captivating. The story gained traction when more than 150 readers chimed in about the rude officers and the airport’s response, leading to another column about others’ experiences.

I never believed I veered into the dark side when I joined Penna Powers. If you believe in an issue or project, it is rewarding advocating for it.

That’s not to say the transition from journalism to public relations is simple. There are distinct differences in the two professions.

PR experts are upbeat and optimistic; journalists are typically cynical and hardened– they’ve seen more bodies and tragedy in general than most can imagine.

Journalists are accustomed to proceeding without a concrete plan. That’s the way it’s supposed to be unless you are covering recurring events (e.g. elections, holiday stories). If you have an agenda about how you plan to cover a news story, you will not likely tell it in an objective manner. A story unfolds and the reporter covers it fairly and comprehensively.

This might sound unworldly in the PR realm.

In PR it’s imperative to have a communication plan. You must have sources ready to speak to the media on issues. You must identify that there is news worthy of media coverage and then think of creative ideas for your pitch to stand out to reporters to gain coverage on a particular issue. You must gain approval from the client before acting on your strategy.

There are distinct differences in communication and working styles too.

For instance, journalists are procrastinators and typically do their best work under a tight deadline. I learned to write fast and accurately early in my career when I was a sports intern and assigned 10 game briefs due within a half-hour. On election nights, journalists make calls to candidates when the projected results are in with the understanding that the quotes won’t be published if the numbers change. That’s a tight deadline.

In public relations, because of the planning involved, rarely are you on a tight deadline. In the end, the planning and strategizing invested in campaigns pays off with well thought out initiatives.

Exclamation points. Exclamation points! In journalism, this is rarely used punctuation typically spared for a direct quote to describe someone shouting. Not even in emails do reporters use exclamation points, unless they are angry.

I’ve caught the bug. In public relations, exclamation points are not taboo. People use exclamation points to show enthusiasm or support. So, I’ve learned to still use sparingly so they don’t lose their meaning, but don’t drop the explanation points!

Overall, journalists making the transition to public relations firms and government agencies can bring an invaluable perspective.

They instinctively know what stories will intrigue reporters and know what it takes to get crews of journalists to cover an issue. They know which press releases grabbed their attention when they were reporters and which were tossed into the trash.

Similarities also exist between the two fields.

In both professions, it’s important to build healthy relationships to be successful. A PR expert’s robust relationship with a reporter can lead to positive news stories.

Both professions are in the business of selling. Journalists are interested in selling newspapers, PR professionals are in the business of pitching stories to raise public awareness on particular issues and programs.

I had always heard in the newsroom that 20 percent of reporters actually make it with a PR agency. That was the unofficial word in the newsroom. I say believe in what you do and you are going to succeed.

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Content marketing is exploding. It makes sense, as a written article or produced video can convey more information and users actually choose to read/watch it. Companies are willing to pay content marketers, including YouTubers, big dollars to have them promote their product.

So how much do they really make? Well, let’s look first at how much companies pay them to promote a product and secondly let’s look at how much YouTube pays them to run ads.

How Much do You Pay a YouTuber to Promote Your Product. Obviously this varies widely depending on the YouTuber’s audience and the marketing objective. In general, YouTubers typically charge around $10,000 per 100,000 views. It’s difficult to predict how many views a native video will get, so that is the risk an advertiser takes.

How Much YouTube Pays YouTubers Per View. Once the YouTuber links Google AdSense to their channel, they make 68% of the ad revenue (see Google AdSense Revenue Share). YouTube charges advertisers when a viewer watches 30 seconds or more of the ad, and typically charges around $.18 per view (see How Much Do Ads on YouTube Cost). Only about 15% of viewers will be counted as a “paid view” since many of them skip.

So if you have 1,000 views to your video and 15% actually watch the ad, then you would have 150 paid views. At $.18 per view, this would equate to $27 total charged to the advertiser. As the content creator you get 68% of that, so you would average around $18 per 1,000 views.

Here is it another way:

1,000 views –> 150 views of people completing the ad

$.18 per view x 150 views = $27 charged to advertiser

$27 advertiser charge x 68% revenue share = $18 paid to content creator per 1,000 views

Who are the Top YouTubers? In 2014, the top YouTuber made $4.9 million unboxing toys. Yes that’s right, the whole channel is just her unboxing Disney toys. Her top video, Play Doh Sparkle Princess, has garnered 217 million views. Other examples include PewDiePie, which made $4 million in 2014 and LittleBabyBum, which made $3.5 million. If this makes you question everything you’ve done in your life, you’re not alone.

Should Marketers Pay YouTubers to Make Videos? To say it depends is kind of a cop-out, so I’m going to compare the cost per thousand views to if you just ran an online video ad instead.

Making Videos. From above, you could calculate that to have a YouTuber make a video and post it to their channel you would be paying roughly $10,000 for 100,000 views, which breaks down to $100 per 1,000 views.

Running Video Ads. If you opted to just run an ad on their channel, you would pay $27 per 1,000 views (but only really get 150 completed views). To get 1,000 completed views it would cost $405.

Both are good options. Video is much more visual than any other media so if you’re debating between the two you have a good problem. Having a YouTuber produce a video is comparatively less expensive, but you give up creative control and cannot know how successful the video will be. Also you are limited to just their channel, so you may need to do multiple of these deals. Some of the pros are that you get a customized piece of content that doesn’t feel like an ad, and oftentimes these channels reach audiences that don’t consume general mass media. Paid ads are just that – paid ads, and oftentimes users feel inconvenienced when forced to watch them. However, the targeting is great and can oftentimes tie into your larger marketing strategy.

Need help deciding on your video content strategy? Let us help!

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Many companies choose to outsource their online advertising to a digital media agency. That is fine.

Many companies receive monthly banner ad reports and do not know how to read or measure them. That is not.

This article will walk you through six essential elements that should be included in a banner ad report:

1. Average CTR, CPM and CPC for display ads. This will vary on how targeted your advertising campaign is, but below are the standard metrics that any digital media agency should be hitting:

     a. CTR – .10% or higher
     b. CPM – $3 to $10 depending on the site
     c. CPC – $10 (assuming a maximum $10 CPM and .10% CTR). A site over a $10 CPM should be delivering a higher CTR.

2. Screenshots. It may sound trivial, but this is a good way to test that your digital agency is running the correct creative on the types of sites you want them to run.
3. Site list. If you are running through an ad network, which is a network of sites, are you receiving a report of what sites those are? We’re not talking a sample list, but an actual list by impressions of where your ads actually showed up. Ask them.
4. AdWords optimizations. If your digital shop is monitoring your AdWords campaign, you should be receiving a report of all the changes they are making. Hopefully these changes helped lower your overall costs while still maintaining quality traffic. Also, in your AdWords report you should be able to see the following:

     a. Ad groups
     b. Average cost-per-click
     c. Click-through rate
5. Analytics tie-in. You could be receiving thousands of clicks from your banner ads, but what are your customers doing once they are on your site? Your digital agency should be able to provide you with an analytics snapshot of what visitors from each source are doing.
For example, we have run through ad networks with very low CPMs, received lots of clicks, but then the average user spent 0:03 seconds our site with 100% bounce rate. Sure, lots of visitors but none that mattered.

6. Summary of performance. If your digital agency provides a summary and next steps, it means that they are actively working on your campaign. If you receive an automated report from their ad server that has clearly not been formatted, then likely they have your campaign on autopilot and haven’t looked at it at all.

These six steps should ensure you are getting what you pay for in your digital media agency.

These are all standard reports, but may vary based on your advertising budget. As a note, this article does not include metrics for lead tracking. If you would like more information on how to set up or monitor lead tracking, please contact us directly.

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PPBH Nevada Open House

Penna Powers Brian Haynes has officially opened its office in Nevada. To commemorate, we held an open house on December 17, 2013 and invited clients and media partners.

The event will live in infamy for its drinks, exhaustive tours and baseball-themed décor. We are grateful for all of the support that our clients and media partners have been giving while setting up our shop.

The employees located in the Nevada office are:

  • Kyle Kubovchik, Nevada Director.
  • Adrienne Packer, Public Relations Supervisor.
  • Jason Alleger, Digital Media Planner.
  • Melissa Deitz, Media Planner (who works out of Reno).

The agency is located at 2470 Saint Rose Parkway Suite 210 in Las Vegas. We are excited for the future growth of our Nevada office!

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