451 Reasons to Party

It’s that time again… new art adorns the walls of 451 Marketing – and this time, we welcome oil paintings by artist Beth Dacey. Once every quarter, we transform our Boston office by welcoming a new, local artist to our large, white walls. We host a “451 Art Party” showcasing the works of Boston artists at our headquarters in Boston.

 

 

Last night was our fall art party, “451 Reasons to Party,” in which we provided plenty of reasons to do just that. To name a few, Beth Dacey’s art, Hood ice cream, Svedka cocktails, The Dotted Eyes, Instagram photo booth, and, well, us!

 

 

Last night proved to be more than your average art showing as our guests danced to the live band, The Dotted Eyes (who were excellent),  played dress up in our Instragram photo booth, sipped on pumpkin spice martinis, and told us why they like to party on our 451 Reasons wall!

                        

Why do we host art parties?

Our art parties are not only a great opportunity for us to network, have some fun, and enjoy beautiful work, but the art definitely boosts the energy in our office and we really enjoy sharing it with colleagues and friends. We appreciate the visual beauty of the art and enjoy the creativity, thought, and motivation that went into creating each piece. Anything to stir the pot and enhance our creativity is always embraced. Art is creative and inspiring for anyone, even to those of us who can barely hold a paint brush, and we find it to be beneficial in the office as it translates into creating our own masterpieces – PR campaigns! It also proves to be an excellent opportunity for the artists to display their pieces in a new venue with lots of foot traffic.

Thank you to everyone who was a part of our event! We couldn’t have asked for a better turnout or better people to celebrate with – well, AJ was missed… sort-of! We would never throw a party without him!

 

If you are interested in purchasing a piece of art, contact Glen Hawkins at 617-986-0220 or Glen@451marketing.com.

 

 

 

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Behind the Scenes at 451 Marketing: Meet Jessica Alario

You might have seen her grabbing something to eat at, oh say – every restaurant in Boston! You must be thinking she’s a really hungry girl or just loves food (which is totally true), but that’s because she’s our hospitality PR senior account executive! Jessica plans and executes public relations campaigns for 451 Marketing’s growing list of hospitality clients including Puritan & Co., Restaurant dante, Catalyst, Blue Inc, L’Espalier, and Sel de la Terre.

 

 

What is your favorite thing about working in PR?

My favorite thing about working in PR is that each day is different than the one before it and the one after it. Some people find comfort in having a very routine schedule, and I am not one of those people. I like the unknown in my day to day and the excitement that comes with responding to news, trends and pop up opportunities that are immediate.

 

Prior to 451, you were the in-house PR professional for two local restaurants. How does that work compared to what you’re doing at 451?

In the restaurant world you always have to be on your toes whether you are in house or in an agency. Working in house afforded me the ability to learn the internal workings of a restaurant from the different perspectives in the Front of the House, Back of the House, Management and Marketing. This experience is one of the things that is useful to me in an agency setting as we work with our robust portfolio of clients to create meaningful and effective PR programs and promotions.

Obviously working in house with one brand is very different from working with multiple clients and their various brands. However, in my case, working in an agency fosters a different type of creativity and allows the ability to work with a larger team and network of professionals.

 

How did your coursework and experience at Bentley College prepare you for this career?

Bentley College provided unparalleled breadth and depth of their business program. While I majored in marketing, I also gained invaluable knowledge in all aspects of business.  Bentley gives students the tools to be the best professional business person you can be in any field. One cliché marketing 101 rule that we learned early on is the 80/20 rule – that 80% of your business comes from 20% of your customers. I always keep this in mind when considering effective marketing tactics for my clients to build and capitalize on that 20%.

 

You have a lot of experience in the hospitality industry – what draws you to this specialty?

I’m drawn to the hospitality industry because I have a very large family and we were constantly entertaining. I loved growing up with so many people constantly around. Being Maltese, food was always a big part of the entertaining process. I was also always very adventurous eater, I had my first oyster when I was only 3 years old.  When I was in high school, I worked on a farm and I think that gave me a deeper appreciation for food and the connection that we have to it. At that time I also kept a journal that chronicled about 15 different versions of Lobster Ravioli (random!) that I had tried at various restaurants while visiting one of my Aunts in Boston.  It has been and continues to be a great time in the city to watch the culinary scene in Boston evolve, and I feel lucky to work with such talented Chefs.

 

What advice would you give those hoping to break into PR?

I would advise those hoping to break into PR to be eager. Soak in absolutely everything you can, every little detail, even if you don’t think it is important at the time. Don’t be afraid to work hard because it will all eventually pay off and prepare you for the next steps in your career. Be a team player, it sounds cliché, but it’s true.

 

What is the most valuable lesson you have learned in your career so far?

The most valuable lesson I have learned in my career is to always give your all and to treat everything like it is your own. Employers and clients hire you for a reason and probably in hopes that you will be a part of building their brand. When you have the devotion and respect for your work, as if it is for your own company, you will build a great reputation for your employer and also yourself.

 

What do you think 451 does differently than other agencies its size?

It goes without saying that 451’s collaboration between PR, Social Media, and Search Marketing makes it incomparable to other agencies its size. The other important thing is the culture here. When you’re in college and applying to jobs you start to hear buzzwords like corporate culture. However, it’s not until you are actually out there in the work place that you learn how important this is. Our founders, Tom, Nick and AJ, are forward thinking individuals that have created a great work environment with a very smart and talented team.

 

Have questions for Jessica? Ask in the comment section below.

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Karyn Ringer Award

Karyn Martin: Plaques and Billboards and PR, Oh my!

Bells are ringing in the 451 Marketing office this month! We found out that our very own, Karyn Martin, was named the 2012 Ringer Award winner by the @PubClubofNE! The Ringer Award recognizes a public relations professional who has demonstrated excellence in public relations strategy, handling clients and staff, creativity, PR program implementation and oversight, as well as superior written and interpersonal communication skills and professionalism. Basically this means, she ROCKS at her job.

 

Karyn is the public relations senior account director at 451 and has been with the agency for two years. We’ve always known just how talented and special she was, but now with a shiny plaque hanging in her office, we have bragging rights!

Earlier we did a “Behind the Scenes” post to introduce you to Karyn – and now that she’s famous (she was featured on a billboard in TIMES SQUARE! Yes, the big apple!), we’ve decided to follow up and see just how it feels to be in her red high heels.

Were you surprised to receive the Ringer Award?

Winning the Ringer award definitely caught me by surprise—what an unexpected honor!

How important was the aspect of mentorship in getting you where you are today?

I’ve been lucky in my career to have worked for some amazing, talented publicists. The time they took to teach me best practices is a large part of why I’m successful today. I believe whole-heartedly in paying it forward and I’m in a position now to help mold a future generation of publicists. I delight in passing on what I know to my team and take joy in their achievements.

What advice would you give to an employee or intern new to public relations?

Be a sponge—soak it all in. Talk to people both in your department and outside of your department to understand not only public relations, but how it fits into marketing and the ways in which it supports broader business strategy.

Which direction do you see PR travelling in the future?

I’m an agency publicist for life. I thrive on variety. I’m not sure what the future will hold, but I know I’ll be diving in to help different types of business tackle communication and exposure challenges to help educate their market and drive sales.

Will winning this award change your daily outlook of PR?

Not at all. It’s validating and fulfilling to be recognized for excellence by peers and clients, but like they say in the culinary world you are only as good as your last dish. In PR you’re only as good as your last hit.

In PR, how important is it to be a constant role model to your peers and clients?

It’s critical to lead by example. At 451 I’d like to think we are building an empire and our rapid year over year growth supports this goal. Strong leadership is a key pillar to maintaining cultural integrity and client service excellence when building a brand quickly. I think this is true in any business.

 

Here at 451, we leave no recognition unnoticed and made no exception for Karyn’s big award! FYI: The balloon jungle that took over her office has not gotten in the way of her work. Surprised? We aren’t either.

 

Well folks, there you have it – Karyn Martin, PR extraordinaire. We’re stoked to call her ours. Read more about @KarynMartin and her Ringer Award here.

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Digital Presence: Top 5 Things Customers Look for in a Company Online

Staying competitive in today’s market can pose a challenge to many companies. But really, it’s not that hard to stay at the forefront of your customers’ minds. Just give them what they want. Follow these steps and you will be well on your way to being an unforgettable and sought-after company!

1. Online Presence: Duh, this is 2012. How do you expect to attract customers if you can’t even be found in a Google search? It’s important for your company to be found online and in order for that to happen you need to start practicing a few basic marketing techniques: SEO & social media. Your customers are on Facebook. If you’re not, you are missing opportunities.

2. Interaction: Ok, so you’ve created a Twitter account, optimized a press release, and developed a Facebook ad – what now? Use your social media platforms to engage with your audience through discussions, comments, and promotions. Develop a company voice and personality by asking questions and responding to comments. Promote your press release on your website. Interaction promotes engagement. Engagement enhances relationships. Relationships turn into business! Cha ching!

3. Edginess Factor: What makes your company different from a competitor? This is key in distinguishing your brand and separating yourself from the crowd – aka competitors! Be unique!

4. Innovative: You’ve heard it before, we’re going to remind you again… Be a leader, not a follower! Brainstorm and develop ideas that will be new and exciting. Whether that means developing a new tool, or simply having a catchy slogan. Think outside of the box!

5. Relationships: We’re going old school with this one. Relationships are so vital to any business no matter the industry. Customers like to have a connection, feel appreciated, and most importantly respected. Show your customers that you care. These things don’t need to cost money. Budget friendly customer appreciation ideas can include a Facebook contest, telephone call, dropping by to say hi, or even an email thanking customers for their continued loyalty and business. Use a combination of traditional and digital tactics to stay relevant and real. It’s not rocket science – treat others how you want to be treated.

Time to rate your company. 4 out of 5 is good, but not enough. Anything less and you’ve got work to do. How does your company match up? Do you find some some of these strategies to be easier than others? Which ones present challenges to your company?

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Group BBJ

We’re Growing, Growing, Growing!

 

On Thursday, April 26th 451 Marketing was recognized by the Boston Business Journal  for the second consecutive year as a 2012 Pacesetter. The Pacesetter list is comprised of the region’s fastest growing privately held companies reporting annual growth of at least 10 percent over a four-year period and have in excess of $750,000 in sales to qualify.

The event was hosted at the Westin Copley Hotel in the Back Bay where 73 companies were honored and announced  by placement order counting down to number one.

 More than 500 people joined the BBJ for breakfast to celebrate the 2012 Pacesetters!

Our table – and just when you thought the event couldn’t get hotter…

…out comes the 451 hot sauce to complement the delicious breakfast!

Anxiously awaiting to hear 451 Marketing announced are Partners Nick Lowe and Tom Lee

#35 was announced and the table smothering their breakfast with hot sauce (oh, wait, that was us!) was on its feet, cheering and clapping as our 451 Partner, Tom Lee, excitedly took the stage to accept the award on behalf of the company.

Tom kept it short and sweet saying, “Thank you to our clients and friends. We’re proud to support @BostonPal.For every word in their acceptance speeches, honorees committed a $25 donation to Boston Police Athletic League, an organization dedicated to bringing the business community together with schools and police to help Boston’s youth succeed. 

Panelists at the Boston Business Journal’s 2012 Pacesetters Awards Breakfast were FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: Jill Becker, founder of Cambridge NanoTech; Mark Hatton, president and CEO Core Security; Susan Leger-Ferraro, president and founder of Little Sprouts; Jon McNeill, CEO of Enservio; Mike Tuchen, CEO of Rapid 7 and moderator Steve Walsh, vice president enterprise services with Comcast Business Class.

451 Partners with the Pacesetters Award – Tom Lee, Nick Lowe, & AJ Gerritson

451 Marketing attendees in front of the  451 Marketing/Boston Business Journal “Command Center”

 

We are honored to be named a BBJ Pacesetter for the the second time and are excited at how fast we are growing as a brand. We’re looking for number three in 2013!! A big thank you to the Boston Business Journal for another exquisite event and for recognizing 451 Marketing as a 2012 Pacesetter!

You can find out more details about the events here.

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