Shatterproof Pittsburgh Stronger Than Addiction

Please join our friends at Shatterproof.org on Wednesday, June 25 at the Westin Convention Center Hotel in downtown Pittsburgh, to raise awareness and funds for research, prevention and support of those afflicted with Drug and Alcohol Addiction.

Shatterproof-Pittsburgh-PasadenaSponsor or rappel 26 stories down the side of the Westin!

Rappel times are going fast – hurry to sign up today for the Pittsburgh event here.

Here’s an interview our BrandMill Public Relations team coordinated yesterday for founder Gary Mendell on KDKA-TV’s Pittsburgh Today LIVE.

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Gateway Analytical – CSI of Pittsburgh

Congratulations to our super new client Gateway Analytical in Gibsonia, PA on its public grand opening this week. We’re proud to say we earned some well deserved publicity for the “CSI of Pittsburgh!”

A subsidiary of Pittsburgh’s ChemImage, Gateway Analytical provides advanced analytical testing for the forensics (police, FBI, etc.), materials science and pharma industries, and helps each to speed up their testing and reduce their costs.   The company offers services that relay vital information about product quality and investigate regulatory noncompliance issues-all things that are more relevant today and more important than ever before because of America’s growing concern regarding health and safety.  Plus, an increase in government regulation over the safety of consumer products will increase the need for testing laboratories such as Gateway Analytical.

Along with the ceremonial ribbon cutting led by PA Congressman Jason Altmire, the grand opening included guided tours of the new 3,000-square foot facility, and brief remarks from industry experts and community leaders, including representatives from PA State Senator Jane Orie’s Office – Ashley Sisca – and from PA House Majority Leader Mike Turzai’s Office, Mike Hritz.

Check out this awesome feature story (and video) for KDKA-TV by Rick Dayton.

Here’s more from the Pittsburgh Tribune Review and the Pine-Richland Patch. More to come.

All of us at BrandMill were proud to part of Gateway Analytical’s special day and it’s history!

Photo: Dr. Ryan Priore, Jim McGlone, PA Congressman Jason Altmire, Dave Exline, Mike Hritz, Ashley Sisca, John Belechak and Dr. Oksana Olkhovyk

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A WOW Marketing Procedure

Throughout my days as a professional marketer, I could never understand why doctors write with such poor penmanship when giving prescriptions. In fact, the sloppy practice has always annoyed me.

When I’d get a prescription and attempt to decipher it myself, a flurry of questions would race through my mind such as:

Would the pharmacist get my prescription right?
Doesn’t it slow things down and add to unnecessary increases in human errors.
For a profession in which errors can lead to death, shouldn’t processes be handled with more care?
And, who do these elitist doctors think they are?

Well, after struggling with a bronchitis condition for the past 3 months, I finally decided to see my doctor and was amazed, excited, happy and extremely pleased to get my prescription via a computer printout – WOW!

Such a simple procedure, easily taken to the next level and is now REMARKABLE to me. And, I’m sure it’s remarkable to others too.

‘Remark’able I say because I’ve told over 10 people in 2 days about this seemingly small, but most gratifying experience.

With this simple procedural improvement, I’m more jacked about my doctor than ever before. They’re more professional, state-of-the-art etc.

Are there simple practices that you can review and through a few easy steps surprise and delight your customers?

Can you improve your invoices, meeting minutes and more to make them WOW documents and procedures.

I’ll bet you can.  And, if you spruce things up a bit I promise you that your customers will bet on you in the future!

P.S.: Now, I’m sure my doctor isn’t the only one with computerized prescriptions. Which begs the question, “Why didn’t they do this 10 years ago?” Be first, be daring, be different! Why wait for others? Do the right things…right now.

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AMA Pittsburgh Marketer of the Year

Stephen Wayhart, BrandMill, Albert K. Mastantuono, PhD - Chairman of the Board ACS - Greater Pgh. Unit, Leanne Schepner - Corporate Development Director - ACS, Dan Catena - Communications Director, Western PA Region - ACS, Nicole Burke - Corporate Development Specialist - ACS, Stephanie Spezialetti & Carly Neal BrandMill

Last week at a lovely holiday luncheon at LeMont, we were proud to join our friends and marketing partners from the American Cancer Society, Western PA Region who were recognized by the Pittsburgh American Marketing Association as the Marketer of the Year in the Non Profit category for 2010.

We’re proud of BrandMill’s ACS affiliation, leading its Marketing Committee, providing public relations guidance and launching its first Social Media Marketing efforts via Facebook. And, we look forward to continuing to help them in their fight to fund cures for cancer.

It was a great way to end the year and a great follow-up to our recent award.

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Pittsburgh’s New Innovative Giant Eagle

Twenty years or so ago, I had several conversations with marketing colleagues about how supermarket chains lacked creativity. The general experience was underwhelming and one that most people dreaded.

During those years, I would take Cadillac, Oldsmobile and McDonald’s clients into Wegman’s supermarkets throughout western, New York to show them how great they were and to learn merchandising, customer service and overall retailing lessons they could take back to their car dealerships and restaurants.

They were amazed that you entered the store through the produce department instead of the typical trip past the cash registers as was the general industry practice way back then. Their merchandising strategies had no peer.

Wegman’s then and now, is one of the most innovative and well-run supermarket chains in America. It’s no surprise to me that they’re ranked #3 on FORTUNE “100 Best Companies to Work For.” They are consistently ranked as one of the top supermarket chains in the country and have received a ton of well deserved awards.

Stew Leonard’s – the world’s largest dairy store – was a hot case study of discussion too.

And way back then, I could not understand why the innovation I saw across the country was not occurring in my own backyard.

About 10 years ago, I got some some luncheon meat from the deli at my hometown Giant Eagle supermarket and was ecstatic to receive it in a plastic bag instead of paper! I mentioned my discovery to a colleague of mine whose spouse worked for the company and told me that the store received the bags as part of some deal and they were simply testing to get some use out of them. Amazing – it was a huge boost to my satisfaction.  This little simple new touch was so well received that it quickly spread throughout their stores and became a permanent part of their system.

Well, something must be a bit different in the water these days in Pittsburgh’s three rivers (especially the Allegheny River) because Giant Eagle has been on a tear of remarkably innovative new product launches such as its:

And now, Giant Eagle is testing in four concept stores it’s latest innovation for HBW (health/beauty/wellness) which could become a huge profit center by linking its supermarket pharmacies with its HBW departments. What a stroke of innovative genius.

I’m happy the new Giant Eagle has finally landed in “innovation land.” Their story should demonstrate to older established brands that it’s never too late to innovate.

To profitably increase your market share you need to establish an innovation plan and follow it. Don’t wait for competitors to come into your neighborhood to force you to do it. Self inflicted innovation is the preferred route to take.

P.S.: Not all innovations have to be big and expensive – think deli meat plastic bags.

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