Pitttsburgh Post-Gazette Features Shatterproof

Shatterproof-pittsburgh-logoMany thanks to Brian O’Neill of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, for this great column we earned for our client Shatterproof, founder Gary Mendell and the upcoming June 25th Pittsburgh Shatterproof Challenge event at the Westin Convention Center Hotel.

We’re proud to report that the media coverage our BrandMill Public Relations team earned for Shatterproof both in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and on KDKA-TV’s Pittsburgh Today LIVE Show has helped sell-out all rappelling slots!

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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.


Good Luck Run Shadyside

run_shadyside_boys_girls_clubGood luck to all the runners and volunteers at today’s 8th Annual Run Shadyside (5K Run and 1 Mile family Fun Walk) – sponsored by the Shadyside Chamber of Commerce – and benefiting the Boys & Girls Club of Pittsburgh.

We were happy and honored to lead the race publicity efforts and for scoring a television interview for race Co-Chair Lara Bruhn on KDKA-TVs Pittsburgh Today LIVE Show.


New Website to Help Reunite Ireland

For St. Patrick’s Day, 2012 we launched a new Website for the Irish American Unity Conference. In addition, we revised their logo, launched a Facebook presence and coached them to continue their social media marketing initiatives.

The IAUC is a nationwide, nonpartisan, nonsectarian, chapter-based human rights organization working for justice and peace in Ireland. It’s mission is to bring all Irish, Irish Americans and others together on the basis of their common belief in Justice and Peace in a reunited Ireland. We wish them well in their peaceful endeavors to reunite Ireland. Adh mor ort (good luck to you) IAUC!


BrandMill Helps 86 Breast Cancer

For nearly 10 years, we’ve been a supporter of the American Cancer Society and its mission of celebrating more birthdays throughout western Pennsylvania. We’ve participated as a Board Member, Marketing Committee Chairperson and general volunteer.

However, this year is shaping up to be one of our more meaningful, gratifying and fun years as we’ve helped the Pittsburgh Region (New East Central Region) more effectively promote its Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Event.

The NFL and locally the Pittsburgh Steelers are huge ‘Strides’ supporters. And a year ago, we proposed the idea of using popular (and future NFL Hall of Famer – if we had a vote) Steelers Hines Ward as an event spokesperson asking people to help, “86 Breast Cancer!” Note: The number 86 is Hines’ number. FYI – to “86 something” means to get rid of or eliminate.

Well, this year the Steelers and Hines agreed and helped the ACS air a unique Public Service announcement with Pittsburgh’s NBC affiliate WPXI-TV and news anchor Peggy Finnegan (a breast cancer survivor) to “86 Breast Cancer” which is what number 86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers is striving to do – and encouraging Pittsburghers to do!

Note: Hines and Peggy are joined in this first picture with American Cancer Society Regional Vice President Glenn Callihan.

Over and above the ’86 Breast Cancer” idea, we’ve supported the ACS brand as its Facebook marketing coach, initiated a sponsor meeting with the local Chevrolet Dealer Marketing Group of Pittsburgh (who raised nearly 15% of the total donations to date) and set up a television interview on Pittsburgh CBS affiliate KDKA-TV s Pittsburgh Today LIVE show.

Tim Colussy, Corina Diehl, Glenn Callihan, Kristine Sorensen

We’re always excited to work alongside brands to help them maximize all of the storytelling opportunities they have available to them and show them the way so they can even do it more effectively themselves. And, they are!

And as a result, I’m happy to report that the American Cancer Society’s 2nd annual Pittsburgh Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 5K Walk held on October 29, 2011 on Pittsburgh’s North Shore (just outside of Heinz Field) involved more than 3,000 walkers and helped raise nearly $300,000 – nearly twice the amount raised in 2010.

Participants included teams from Western Pennsylvania corporations, businesses and organizations that formed Making Strides teams, as well as participation from individuals, including breast cancer survivors, family members and friends.

Of course, the fight is not over yet! Donations will continue to be accepted in order to help the American Cancer Society reach their fundraising goal. Donations can still be made online at cancer.org/stridesonline or by calling 1.888.227.5445.

Proceeds from Making Strides Against Breast Cancer support the American Cancer Society’s life-saving breast cancer research, education, advocacy, patient services, and community partnership grants for women in Pittsburgh.


Pittsburgh Gives Today

Here’s a great opportunity for Pittsburgh brands and every day people to do well by doing good!

Today, Tuesday, October 4, is the Pittsburgh Foundation’s “Day of Giving” when online donations ($25 minimum) via the PittsburghGives website can help your favorite charity in western Pennsylvania receive a pro-rated match.

This is a great opportunity to leverage a tax-exempt contribution and increase the level of your support one of your favorite causes. Follow the PittsburghGives simple four-step process.

Donations must be made online TODAY  by 11:59 PM to be eligible. The match pool for 2011 is $725,000 for Pittsburgh Gives and the match pool is $100,000 for Westmoreland Gives.


Honor Flight Pittsburgh

Remember this weekend (especially Monday) and EVERY day that, “All gave some and some gave all!”

We’re building a team looking to establish an Honor Flight hub in western Pennsylvania – there’s no hub in our state.

Ours is a simple mission – to raise funds to fly/escort World War II vets to visit their Washington DC Memorial (and other Memorials) to thank them for their selfless service for freedoms we enjoy and so often take for granted.

If interested in hearing more (or know someone who might be interested), please email us.

“We can’t all be heroes because somebody has to sit on the curb and clap as they go by.” – Will Rogers


Authentic Marketing Helps Light Lives

These days you hear a ton about Cause Branding and Marketing and about authenticity and transparency in brand messaging.

Well, to see it first hand, check out this interview we set up for our friends at Light of Life Rescue Mission and good friend, former Pittsburgh Steeler and broadcaster Tunch Ilkin.

It’s easy to see how Tunch and Beth’s passion for the Mission enables it to attract volunteers and donors who help its staff make miracles happen every day by getting homeless men and women back on to bright path of recovery.

Net – it’s easy to ‘sell’ when you believe in your product and what you’re doing!

If you’d like to participate in Tunch & Wolf’s 9th Annual Walk for the Homeless on Saturday, May 9th, click here for more information.

Remember,when you light a lamp for someone else, you brighten your path too!


April Fool Barefoot Contessa

Over the years we’ve done a lot of hospitality marketing consulting and the first thing we study is how “hospitable” our clients are as well as their staff and their operating practices.

And, if they’re not hospitable we fix the situation immediately. No advertising is recommended, no one passes “GO” and no one gets $200 – you get the picture.

So, you can imagine how floored I was when I read this story by Rob Shuter about the popular, successful and seemingly nice Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa!

‘Barefoot’ Backfire: Make-a-Wish Kid Turns Ina Down

Here’s Enzo,  a sweet 6-year-old kid with cancer whose wish is to simply meet and cook with ‘her majesty’ because he’s a  huge fan! She blows him off and it’s not until a public backlash that she agrees to meet him.

Here’s the kicker!

Now the family says it’s too late and kicks ‘Her Barefootness’ to the curb because of the snub.

Good for Enzo – he and his family have a ton of class.

Bad for Ina because she’ll feel this PR disaster with a drop in ratings and sales – guaranteed – she lost me big time!

PR lesson #1 – be nice – always – not just when it’s convenient for you!

P.S.: Here’s another report of the story and video on ABC News. And, another. And, you can be sure there is and will be hundreds more!


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.