Blog Archives

 

We’re honored to win Utah Business’ Best Companies to Work for Award once again this year. This marks the sixth time we’ve won this award and the fourth year in a row. While we could list out the million reasons why working at Penna Powers is incredible, it’s easier to let our employees speak for themselves.

 

“I love the laid-back atmosphere and the fun, yet professional people I work with.” – Account Manager Melinda Macfarlane

 

“I get a great sense of fulfillment working at Penna Powers because the clients we work with are dedicated to making a difference in the world. It’s amazing to know that the work we do helps make our communities a better place.” – Associate Project Manager Aubrey Souvall

 

“Penna Powers is the perfect collaboration of great minds coming together to create meaningful work. The fun, inviting environment makes Penna Powers the best place to work!” – Receptionist Sabrina Wilhite

 

“The people. All companies are the same, but the people make Penna Powers stand out. The arcade games, the pool table, great bosses…” – Senior Content Strategist Nick Giustino

 

“I love the flexibility this company has with its employees.” – Videographer Jordan Whitney

 

“The people are my family, the things that happen behind the scenes that clients don’t see (charades, practical jokes, parties, videos, etc.). We do such great work.” – VP of Finance & Ops Traci Houghton

 

“I have experienced a great deal of autonomy working here. Autonomy requires vertical and horizontal trust and just like any productive relationship, trust is the foundation for success. For example, apart from any of my dedicated duties, if I have an interest in contributing on any particular project, all I need to do is express that desire and I am awarded the freedom to do so. This independence and freedom allows for growth and creativity, independent of bureaucracy or other entry barriers.” – Media Planner Jennifer Beaudoin

 

“I love knowing that the work I do helps people live better lives.” – Director of New Business Brent Wilhite

 

“I love the hoodies, staff meetings, that Nerf gun wars are normal and that we get to do great, strategic and creative work every single day.” – VP of Account Planning & Management Stephanie Miller

 

“I like that no two people are the same here. You can be yourself and everyone is accepting of you for you! At the end of the day everyone is different and unique, but we all come together to create some really awesome work.” – Content Coordinator Kelsey Hess

 

“I’ve yet to have a dull day working for Penna Powers. Various clients, new campaigns, creative tactics and great people keep things lively.” – Digital Project Manager Collin Brian

 

“When I started working at Penna Powers, I was fascinated by the amount of employees who were celebrating their 10th or 20th anniversary. After working at Penna Powers for a few months, I realized why. Whether you’re in an entry-level role or a vice president, you know that your voice and your work matter at Penna Powers. The partners ensure that work-life balance is a priority and facilitate activities for the company to grow together. On a Friday night, you’ll find me on the soccer field with my coworkers because I genuinely love hanging out with them outside of work.” – Content Specialist Elyse Freeman

 

“I love that Penna Powers employees take their careers seriously. They are not just in a job. I love that everyone at Penna Powers is really smart. I love that we are not micromanaged ever. We are expected to do our jobs like the true professionals we are. I love that the company will allow you to have flexible hours if you need to take care of something outside of work. I love that we celebrate every employee’s 5, 10, 15, 20-year anniversary. I love that Penna Powers takes our family to Lagoon every summer. I love that the management keeps us informed and gives us a “State of the Agency” presentation once a year. I love that Penna Powers has such a fun, cool culture. I love the work that Penna Powers produces!” – VP of Project Management Chris Menges

 

“I like the overall vibe around the office and unlimited M&Ms.” – Account Manager Bri Binnebose

 

“The partners are so good to us!” – Account Planning Director Wendy Hansen

 

“For me it’s simple: the people and the work. Penna Powers is full of committed, smart, talented people doing work that truly matters to our communities and our future. Pretty rewarding to work at a place like that.” – VP of Client Services Justin Smart

 

“I love working with awesome people, doing awesome things.” – Senior Copywriter Bobby Brinton

 

“I love the change we make in the world, it may be on a small scale, but we are saving lives on Utah’s roads.” – Zero Fatalities Outreach Specialist and Associate Project Manager Kylie Christensen

 

“I laugh every single day. Maybe not all day, every day, but at least once a day I find myself with full on tears in my eyes and big belly laughter. Work can be busy, timelines can be tight, but I find joy and gratitude every single day in my role and I find the stressful days are few and far between because the people of this company make this place such a pleasure to be a part of.” – Traffic Manager Alex Antonino

 

“I like the fact we never get bored. Every project is always something new. And, I’ve got damn good friends here.” – Senior Project Manager Britni Brozo

 

“I love how accepting everyone is.” – Associate Project Manager Alli Blake

 

“I love that it always feels like a positive environment, even when things may not be ideal. It’s always a happy place for me, anyway.” – Receptionist Michelle Adams

 

“I love Penna Powers because it fosters an atmosphere where the best idea can come from anybody.” – VP of Channel & Content Management Marc Stryker

 

“I love how everyone will work together to get things done. It’s a family work environment. Where everyone, no matter role, works to provide the best product for our clients.” – Media Relations Specialist Allyse Christensen

 

“I love the emphasis on being one unified team despite our different projects and assignments.” – Truck Smart Outreach Specialist Alec Curtis

 

“I love the parties and the solid work ethic. Plus, everyone is super inviting and outspoken. If someone has something to say, they’ll say it!” – Zero Fatalities Outreach Specialist Aja Domingo

 

“Laughing is constant during staff meeting,” – Content Specialist Julene Thompson

 

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Penna Powers took home some serious hardware at the 30th annual Golden Spike Awards Gala on Nov. 16. We earned six Golden Spike awards and one finalist award at the 2017 Golden Spikes in categories ranging from research for governments/non-profits to community relations.

2017 Golden Spikes

Golden Spike Awards

Harmons Grocery Local Print Ads

Category: Print display advertising
Harmons Grocery has been operating in Utah since 1932. What started out as a farmstand has blossomed into a progressive chain of grocery stores committed to quality food, unsurpassed service and community wellbeing. Supporting local vendors has always been at the forefront of Harmons mission, in fact, Harmons has been an integral cog in helping many local businesses get started. Over 2,300 products sold in Harmons are local items. With this in mind, Harmons asked Penna Powers to develop print ads with an emphasis on local. The ads featuring local products and produce were placed in various local Utah publications reaching more than 250,000 in readers.

 

UCAIR & Penna Powers: Show Them UCAIR

Category: Community relations
UCAIR and Penna Powers have conducted fully-integrated educational campaigns for the past several winters, when Utah’s air quality suffers most. Research in early 2016 showed that Utahns are concerned about air quality, but many believe air quality challenges are beyond their control. However, research participants activated around the issue when presented with the health impacts poor air can have on those they love. Building on this insight, UCAIR and Penna Powers created the “Kidult” campaign, inviting Utahns to “Show Them UCAIR” by changing behaviors to reduce emissions.

 

UDOT & Penna Powers: UDOT 1-15 Tech Corridor

Category: External audience videos
Utah County is growing rapidly, resulting in commute-time traffic jams. The Utah Department of Transportation planned to expand I-15, but funding wouldn’t arrive until 2020. In 2017, the State Legislature approved a bond to accelerate construction.
A public awareness survey showed that only 24 percent of locals knew a project was coming. UDOT developed a video to educate stakeholders on the project and announce the accelerated timeline. The video link was emailed to government and business leaders and promoted on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to area residents and commuters.

 

UDOT & Penna Powers: UDOT TravelWise

Category: Research for government/non-profits
In order to establish a baseline around the TravelWise Program, UDOT conducted a general public telephone survey of Wasatch Front residents through Lighthouse Research & Development, Inc. The research included a total of 810 interviews. It was the first time that research of this scale had been done on the TravelWise campaign. It substantiated our belief that the campaign is necessary, surprised us in the level of program awareness, and provided actionable insights that are currently being pursued by the team.

 

IDOT & Penna Powers: Iowa Zero Fatalities “Impaired Sports”

Category: Social media for government/non-profits

With 32 percent of all traffic fatalities caused by alcohol related crashes, Zero Fatalities Iowa identified a need to address impaired driving with residents. In an effort to reduce fatalities, Iowa Zero Fatalities implemented a social awareness campaign during NFL and NCAA sporting seasons targeting men ages 18-49. Event targeting reminded spectators to get a sober ride home after the game. The campaign successfully, reached 59.8 percent of the target audience and helped lift overall Zero Fatalities awareness by two percentage points.

 

UCAIR & Penna Powers: UCAIR Illustrated Inversion Education Video

Category: Photography and illustration
The Utah Clean Air Partnership (UCAIR) is a non-profit dedicated to clean air. UCAIR and Penna Powers have conducted fully-integrated educational campaigns for the past several winters, when Utah’s air quality suffers most. Part of the challenge of getting Utahns to engage around air quality is overcoming their general low awareness that what they do does, in fact, make a difference in pollution levels. Many believe nothing can be done about Utah’s poor winter air episodes due to the meteorology and geography of the local airshed. During the 2016-17 winter campaign, we produced an illustrated educational video to attack this issue head-on.

 

Gold Spike Finalist Award

UDOT & Penna Powers: Zero Fatalities

Category: Community relations
To reduce traffic-related deaths between Memorial and Labor Day, Zero Fatalities implemented a multifaceted campaign called the “100 Deadliest Days.” As titled, the campaign focused on educating Utahns about (1) the 100 DD of summer when roadway deaths nearly double in Utah and (2) how to best prevent a traffic-related tragedy during the summer. Not only has the campaign performed exceptionally well in reach, frequency and engagement – As of August 23, there have been 12 less roadway related deaths this summer when compared to this same time last year.

 

The Golden Spike Awards measure effectiveness regarding research, planning, execution, evaluation and project content. A Golden Spike Finalist is awarded to entries that earn at least 80 out of 100 points; the highest scoring entry earns a Golden Spike. The annual competition is sponsored by the Utah Chapters of the Public Relations Society of America, the International Association of Business Communicator and the Utah Society for Healthcare Communication and Marketing.

Additionally, President and Managing Partner Dave Smith, APR received the Professional of the Year award.

Thank you to our clients for your continued partnership. While we are proud to produce award-winning campaigns, what matters the most is driving meaningful change together.

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We may need to invest in another cabinet to showcase our awards because Penna Powers is adding three more trophies to the mix. Our team took home three bronze awards from the 38th Annual Telly Awards, which recognized the best videos across all screens. With over 12,000 entries from all 50 states and five countries, we’re proud to be recognized for our work by the selection committee.

Watch our winning videos:

Utah Zero Fatalities:

“Potty Mouth” – Television

“Slow Pour” – Television

Utah Clean Air Partnership:

“Causes of Inversion” – Online video

The videos were viewed on websites, social media channels, in-banner paid video promotions and in movie theaters.

Thank you to our clients for placing their trust in us to create innovative social change campaigns. While being recognized for our work is rewarding, what’s more important is the behavior change that we are able to accomplish in partnership with our clients.

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“Moonlight” winning the Oscar for best picture this year got us thinking about what movies were the best at telling the stories that live within advertising. After popping up a batch of popcorn (with extra butter, of course) and breaking out the M&Ms, we cast our votes for the following categories.

Best channeling of a target market—Going beyond Scarborough data and other secondary research, Mel Gibson embarked on a journey of primary research to best market a new product to women. For dedication and the best attempt to getting into the personae of the target market (and learning much more than he anticipated), the winner is “What Women Want.

Best ‘giving it your all’ in a creative presentation—Creative types often read lines and show story board of what ad is going to look like, but Tom Hanks and his team went the extra mile getting into costume, breaking out props and acting out their concept of A Trip to Grandma’s to win a major airline account for their Chicago agency. “Nothing in Common gets our nod for best presentation of a creative concept. Note: We couldn’t find clip of this scene online, but it’s worth the watch to check out the full movie.

Best creative lines a client would never approve ­– Deadlines and long hours leads an overworked AE, Dudley Moore, to lose all filters and begin delivering campaigns with the honest sell including “Buy Volvo. They’re boxy but they’re good” and “United, Most of our passengers get there alive.” This is a favorite because these truth is funnier than fiction and everyone who has worked in an agency knows lines like these are part of every brainstorm, Though, much to our chagrin, never see the light of day. For entertainment value, humor, truth “Crazy People wins the golden statue.

Best look at what keeps us up at night —Beyond brainstorms and creative briefs, this movie pulls back the curtain on a real look into the creative minds and methods behind the ads we love. Before the ‘big idea’ see what goes into developing a strategy, the stressors of channeling creativity today and worrying about where it’s coming from tomorrow, and the role advertising and PR has played and plays in our lives today. For best portrayal of the 60 hour work week, the Oscar goes to the documentary “Art & Copy”.

It’s been too long since we’ve had an ode to all that is advertising on the silver screen. Here’s hoping for a new release in the coming year. In the meantime, what can’t miss ad movies would you add to the list?

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