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March 7th, 2013
Posted By: Allan Pettit
When the largest networking software company in the world needed a marketing intervention to boost short term revenue and regain market credibility, it named Jim Perkins North America platform marketing manager. His integrated marketing campaigns eventually generated over $23 million in tracked revenue, restoring vitality to the Novell brand.
When McCormick needed a merchandising solution that would simplify inventory control for retailers and make it easier for consumers to find its spices, it turned to Jim Perkins. Jim and his design team developed a reloadable, on-shelf merchandising system that dramatically simplified the restocking process and created a McCormick-branded wall in your local grocer’s spice aisle.
And when CH&B, a highly successful ad agency now celebrating its 35th year, went looking for the type of experienced industry visionary necessary to help our clients reach the next level and beyond, we too turned to Jim Perkins.
He’s a proven winner, he is now our executive vice president, managing director, and he’s ready to help you grow your business.
Jim brings a high level of action-oriented, results-driven ingenuity that has paid big dividends for national brands and global corporations.
CH&B President and Founder Mel Campbell couldn’t be more pleased: “Jim has a ton of experience both on the client and agency side, which makes for a powerful combination that promises to really enhance the services we provide our clients. We are extremely excited to have someone of Jim’s caliber join our company.”
In addition to his time at Novell, Jim served as director of marketing and corporate communications for emWare, Inc., a subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation that develops device networking software.
His strategic marketing and brand management expertise spans a vast array of venerable brands, including Coke, CoverGirl, OLAY, Black and Decker, DEWALT and Intel.
“That’s one of the things that I believe has helped me to understand what a client is going through and enabled me to empathize,” Jim says. “That experience adds meaning and conviction to my pledge that we are an extension of your marketing department. I look at your challenges the same way you do, as a partner who’s been through what you’re going through.”
More recently, he returned to the agency side, working for a pair of large Baltimore area B-to-C and B-to-B firms while settling in the York area with his wife, three children and two golden retrievers. Continue reading “CH&B Adds Big Hitter to Powerful Lineup” »
February 8th, 2013
Posted By: Angela Wenner
Adobe Flash is software that is used to create amazing multimedia graphics, animations, and other interactive features on websites. A few years ago, developers eagerly incorporated Flash into their designs, making websites more engaging, entertaining, easy to use. (It made the developer look good, too.) Whether used to create a small moving feature on a site, or as the platform for the entire site, Flash had its day, and life was good.
Music! Lights! Sound! Action! One can see how enthralling it was for the creative developer to have these “flashy” features on a previously static informational or business website. And, one could not necessarily foresee the limitations and inconvenience that Flash might present to future users.
Fairly quickly, the business world was not so friendly toward Flash. Overuse of Flash graphics created annoying scenarios for users: Requiring the download of Flash Player, excessive load times, over-engineered “intro” pages. Websites that used Flash became quaint almost overnight. But businesses weren’t necessarily quick to dispose of these sites, after all, they’d just spent big bucks getting their cool, flashy new site up and running.
Then came the Google factor. Flash sites don’t play nicely with Google. Search Engine Optimization (S.E.O.) has become the #1 priority for most website owners and effective S.E.O. relies upon searchable content and code to determine a site’s purpose and relevance. Flash-based sites present a barrier to this process. If you make it tough for Google, you leave an open door for your competitors to grab market share.
Today, the biggest reason to replace that Flash site is sitting in the palm of your hand. Your smartphone. If your site is not functional and easy to use on a mobile device, then it may as well be invisible. Some smartphones support Flash, but most don’t, and it appears that the biggest tablet manufacturers have placed Flash capability at the bottom of their priority list.
Is there a place for Flash in this fickle world? Perhaps.
If you’re an entertainment company, like Walt Disney, Flash can create an enthralling, immersive web experience that devoted fans expect, like this site for the new theme park called Fantasyland. Seriously, check it out.
But if you’re running a business in the real world, your audience expects quick, easy answers to their questions. So make sure your site is distinctive and well designed. But also make sure that it functions well for every user and every device. They’ll love you for it.
Not sure if your site uses Flash? Give us a call and we’ll take a look.
January 8th, 2013
Posted By: Christian
They’re hot button attributes in today’s most compelling web designs and, thanks to Campbell, Harrington & Brear, they’re part of the new internet presence for York College of Pennsylvania.
York College needed an interface that reflected its otherwise outstanding collection of strengths. The Washington Post called the school “a hidden gem” in light of its outstanding facilities, its concentration on professional preparation, its top-notch faculty, and its high career placement rate.
Our ultra-cool microsite quickly conveys what makes this gem so valuable. Visitors get it, thanks to our responsive design with parallax scrolling – created totally in-house. It results in a site ideally suited for a youthful target audience … students ages 17-19 armed with today’s mobile technology. Responsive design enables the site to be optimized for whatever mobile device being used. Parallax scrolling offers a more immediate and engaging experience, and reveals the College for what it is: a leading institution. Best of all, the school’s new “Results Matter” brand is now more easily shared across social medial platforms.
Our media strategy drives people to the microsite through an online campaign and a 30-second “Results Matter” spot for TV and theatres. The campaign spotlights the College’s impressive achievements in student outcomes, facilities growth, and campus life.
Once on the microsite, visitors instantly come to understand the value of a York College degree through hard-hitting facts on the quality of the education and heartfelt testimonials on how that quality produces meaningful results.
Anyone who checks out the site should come away with a dramatically increased awareness of this outstanding and continually evolving “gem.” They’ll also have an enhanced appreciation for state-of-the-art web design and the effective blending of market, message and medium.
To discuss ways to polish your brand or supercharge your web presence, contact Angela Wenner by email or phone.
October 10th, 2012
Posted By: Allan Pettit
Many small to mid-sized companies – those with revenues of between $2 million and $50 million – suddenly found themselves neglected in the shuffle of the newly merged mega-firms.
Rotz & Stonesifer PC was perfectly positioned to step up and serve companies of this size. The only thing it lacked was the branding platform necessary to reach and inform the company presidents, CFOs and CEOs.
The firm came to us for help, and we’ve responded with a rebranding effort that will enable Rotz & Stonesifer to cast a wider net into this deeper pond. You can get a first look at their website – the center of their new brand’s universe – here.
Fact is, Rotz & Stonesifer knows business. They speak their clients’ language. And they go beyond the science of accounting into the special art that separates valued business advisers from mere number-crunchers.
So our creative concept uses the slogan “Let’s talk,” with dialog balloons as the main graphic element to promote that strategic position. Not only do the balloons reflect the two-way flow of communication between clients and the professionals at Rotz & Stonesifer, they also suggest the relationships Rotz & Stonesifer seeks to build –relationships that will help their clients through the ever-changing maze of accounting regulations and business ups and downs.
The SEO-optimized website is fully content-managed, which means Rotz & Stonesifer will easily be able to keep its content fresh, relevant and attractive to Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc., making it easier to be found by those presidents, CFOs and CEOs.
Further, the platform is flexible enough that it will allow us to “talk about” other important Rotz & Stonesifer services, such as personal wealth management and tax advice, payroll processing, peer review, and HR assistance.
The brand is being supported through emails, literature, PR, social media and other elements to be determined.
September 13th, 2012
Posted By: Christian
During the months leading up to the annual IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) Construction and Maintenance Conference, IBEW Locals from each of the 11 IBEW districts in America and Canada are encouraged to submit TV commercials completed during the previous year.
A committee then reviews the submissions and selects the best for sharing with the conference’s 1,100 attendees between speakers or presentations.
A pair of 30-second spots produced by Campbell, Harrington & Brear for WiredWorks.net were among the submissions from District 3 (comprising Pennsylvania, New York, Delaware and New Jersey). WiredWorks.net is an alliance of electrical contractors featuring the most highly trained, highly motivated, safest electricians you can hire in South Central Pennsylvania.
As it turns out, our spots were selected and presented to the guests assembled in Washington, D.C. And only a handful of others made the cut. According to Jim Ross, IBEW international rep in construction/maintenance, “probably only six to eight,” so it’s quite an honor.
He continued, “We reach out to the entire country to see if they’ve done any promotional things locally. We try to pick out the best ones to provide the Local recognition for what they’re trying to do, but also to share with other (IBEW) Locals the kinds of things they might consider doing. They don’t know till they get here whether we’ve selected theirs or not.”
September 11th, 2012
Posted By: Christian
Susquehanna Style magazine reaches more than 70,000 readers over 10 South Central Pennsylvania counties. This month, they’re all privy to something really wild: Our very own Art Director Kris Heilman is modeling the essential styles for fall 2012 in a spread spanning seven pages.
Wilder yet? Her co-models are badgers and tigers and boars (Oh, my!) as well as other fuzzy friends from a remarkable taxidermy collection found in the nature education center at Nixon Park in York County.
Stylist Hilary Arthur asked Kris if she’d be interested in doing the shoot, and Kris, who’s game for pretty much anything other than buying Power Ball tickets, agreed to help.
Although she had done a bit of modeling in the past, Kris says, “This was kind of nerve-wracking with 10 people on the set. I’m usually on the other end of it. I’m used to being the art director. There was a part of me that wanted to say, ‘Let me see what the picture looks like.’
“But I just tried to have fun with it. It’s kind of hard to take it too seriously when you have a chipmunk on your shoulder and a kangaroo standing behind you.”
In fact, she says, that’s the lesson she’ll apply next time she’s directing a session. “I would say the most important thing I learned is to make the model feel comfortable and keep it light-hearted, because I think that produces the best results.”
Check out Kris and her furry menagerie at Susquehanna Style.
August 24th, 2012
Posted By: Mel Campbell, Jr.
Who would have ever thought bad times would befall Pennsylvania State University. Not in anyone’s wildest dreams did anyone ever think anything could tarnish the reputation of the squeaky clean, bucolic institution known for a good, solid college education at a school that demanded its athletes be students first and football players second. No one could imagine an unhappy day in Happy Valley.
Then in one brief moment the whole world fell apart. The polished national image of a well-known institution of higher education shattered.
This brief post is not about what happened leading up to the public knowledge of the Sandusky affair, but rather addresses how an institution should respond to a situation like this and how to prepare a proper path out of chaos.
I am sure many of you are following this horrible event. How can you not? It is reported daily in newspapers, TV, radio, on the Internet, blogs, you name it. It is important to understand the ramifications and processes necessary to grapple with a catastrophic event like this.
Since the revelation of the Sandusky affair I have seen Penn State make one bad mistake after another. They are providing a classic example of what not to do in crisis management.
I don’t know who has been advising their board or administration concerning the Sandusky incident, but observing their initial reactions, they have it all wrong.
It is my professional opinion that the university is way behind the eight ball on this and needs to get ahead of the curve immediately. They have lost a lot of ground and continue to lose a lot of ground in the court of public opinion. In fact, I am sure they will become a famous case study on crisis mismanagement to be studied for the next 50 years.
Obviously, this is a horrible and painful situation for all involved. There is no “good” in any of this. And, in fact, it will get worse. That is as inevitable as the sun rising each day. So the question now is how does the school manage the situation and prepare a process to move forward.
This does not mean put a spin on it. On the contrary, the worst thing the university – or any business for that matter – could do is try to put a public relations spin on it. Unfortunately, it appears this is Penn State’s present tactic, which is why they are in so much more trouble today.
So why don’t they do the right thing? Mostly because of bad human traits. Arrogance; insular, myopic thinking; denial; and our society’s ever-growing reluctance to take responsibility are keeping the institution from doing the right things. Also, there is always the misguided impulse for a board and its administration to want to “protect” the institution.
There is an old saw in public relations field that states, “if you have to take a bath in public, get clean the first time.” That is the gold standard. It’s the same thing your third grade teacher and your parents taught you: “Tell the truth.”
Here is the reality: Penn State, upon learning of a reported incident of sexual assault to a minor, did nothing about it, allowing a sexual predator to continue to abuse young boys for another 12-plus years.
That’s the story, plain and simple. That’s not the story the board, administration and alumni see at the moment. It is, however, the story the rest of the world sees.
Penn State must accept this point in toto. No partial acceptance allowed. No “well-this-isn’t-entirely-true” statements or discussions. The truth, whole truth and nothing but the truth is what is necessary. Their inability to grasp this is keeping them from any possible recovery.
Extenuating circumstances don’t count. “How and what you say now could affect your position later in court” doesn’t count. How the alumni will react doesn’t count. The lifelong, stellar career of Joe Paterno doesn’t count. “He said, she said” doesn’t count. “We can’t punish the football team, it wasn’t their fault,” doesn’t count. What does count is a complete Clorox® scrub-down of the entire institution.
Know this: What has been done can never be undone. What has happened, happened. The University is stained forever. Forever. Pennsylvania State University will never have the sterling reputation it once had. Never. Sixty years from now people will say, “Oh yes, Penn State, they had that horrible pedophilia incident years ago.” It may not have the negative impact on admissions and in other circles of the school 60 years from now, but that storyline is never going away.
It seems – and whether it is truth or fiction doesn’t matter, perception is everything – Penn State University has not come to grips with the reality of this situation. This school’s after-the-fact poor decision-making, lack of decisive measures, and inability to act swiftly has made a horrible situation worse and continues to make it worse. The hole is going to get deeper, but there is no reason for the university to be doing the spadework.
Incredibly, though 17 months have passed since the Patriot News broke the story and the public became aware of this event, the board of directors and administration are still debating what actions to take. That is deplorable. Discussion should have stopped after the first month. It is unconscionable that they have not initiated a precise, succinct action plan. Presently, the university has an image of an institution out of control and an image that is reinforced daily.
If Penn State thinks it has reached rock bottom, they have no idea what the bottom is really going to look like. They are nowhere near rock bottom and in fact are presently poised on a very tall cliff, which they will soon fall off. Penn State has only witnessed the tip of the iceberg. Over the next five to 10 years there will be criminal proceedings and civil law suits, we will repeatedly see snippets of the Bob Costas interview with Sandusky, and every nationally televised broadcast of a Penn State football game will have announcers talking about the inability to recruit due to the Sandusky pedophilia affair, just to give you a small picture of what is in store for the school.
So, what needs to be done?
Cold, hard, very unpleasant, unwanted decisions have to be made if an institution – a business, a person – is ever going to “survive” a catastrophic event of this magnitude.
Speed is critical. In the case of Penn State, already the perception of the public is the school has acted too slowly. Which translates into the institution doesn’t get it. Which means the university hasn’t learned its lesson.
“Recovery” starts from the top. Those members of the board who still talk about Joe Pa as a part of the institution, who claim to represent the alumni and want the institution to stay the same, who want to fight the NCAA, who disagree with the Freeh Commission, need to turn in their resignations immediately. That Penn State University is gone. Over, done, finished. There is no half-way here. There must be a totally new beginning. Not a single crumb swept under the carpet.
The administration, staff, et al., must be culled, and anyone who had the slightest knowledge or whisper of Sandusky’s behavior or was culpable in the cover-up needs to be fired. The public must see the school taking strong action immediately or there will be no credibility in any of the school’s communications.
The school must begin building a foundation for a new institution; work hard at being a better institution of higher learning; execute and publicize many of the positive – non-sports related – things about the institution; and institute community outreach initiatives … all of which will begin to build a positive brand.
And finally, the Board Chair needs to offer a “real” public apology and state in the strongest terms the institution’s commitment to getting to the bottom of everything. That mea culpa needs to be published in full page ads in every newspaper in the state of Pennsylvania, as well as the top national newspapers, and it must run for at least one week. The Board Chair must follow up within a few days of the apology with strong actions, some previously outlined in his/her plan. The Chair should go on TV, on radio talk shows, meet with alumni across the country outlining the action plan (not asking for their opinion, but telling them what is going to occur) – and not just once, but for years modifying the message from what the university is going to do to what the new Penn State looks like and acts like.
This is all gutsy stuff. In a situation like this there is no time for pleasantries, for long debates on various opinions, or discussions about what can be salvaged. This is a time for strong leadership, really strong leadership.
The interesting aspect of situations like this is they all organically lead to the same inevitable conclusion. It really doesn’t matter if you believe a thing I have written, or whether Penn State’s board is willing to initiate decisive moves, or whether the alumni like it or not: The ultimate outcome will be exactly what I have described. I have been there, seen it and done it. The school will be forced by the courts, by public opinion, by sanctions and by the laws of nature to come clean and raise a new entity. It’s inevitable, so the school should step up now and take the reins of its destiny rather than being flogged to the inevitable result. Be the architects of the new beginning and get credit for it. Take the opportunity to rebuild an even better university.
My credentials for writing this post:
41 years in marketing, advertising and public relations.
36 years president and owner of Campbell, Harrington & Brear Advertising Agency.
20 years a member of a Pennsylvania college Board of Directors.
Crisis management expertise and experience.
August 2nd, 2012
Posted By: Christian
If your website’s analytics indicate a significant amount of traffic from mobile users, it’s time to incorporate responsive site design.
Responsive site design allows the site to fluidly adjust and rescale to the screen size and orientation (horizontal or vertical) of any mobile device or desktop computer. That’s right, any mobile device.
It’s fairly new. It is truly responsive in that it uses media queries to re-structure content specifically for each individual device’s display size. And because it can be fluid and adjust to any given display, it adapts to all current and future devices.
It is also the ideal way to ensure the best possible user experience, regardless of device. A truly responsive site quickly loads everything the user needs to see while stripping out superfluous content. Plus, responsive sites scale down immediately, so mobile users don’t have to zoom in.
Some businesses have tried to accommodate the mobile explosion by designing a separate website for mobile users. Unfortunately, since those mobile web addresses differ from the main web address, links shared from mobile browsers do not improve search visibility for the main site.
Furthermore, these separate sites created for Mobile users are confined to one single device size (generally, an average cell phone’s vertical orientation display size). As a result, they do not adjust for tablets or the larger display sizes of certain mobile devices.
Because responsive site design is code built into the architecture of your main site, your single site benefits from shared links regardless of the source and it immediately orients to any screen size.
At CH&B, we recommend ‘mobile-first’ responsive site design for clients experiencing significant mobile traffic. Mobile-first optimizes the load time for mobile devices by prioritizing content, compressing vital images, and eliminating the loading of items that mobile users will never need.
Responsive site design is not an easy fix, but it is a long-term solution that will enable you to accommodate every single web-enabled device – even future iterations with new and ground-breaking sizes. And with 77 percent of the world’s population owning a mobile device, this is not an issue that’s going away.
For more information on responsive site design and mobile-first, contact Angela Wenner via email or call 717.846.2947.
June 19th, 2012
Posted By: Allan Pettit
Today is officially the first day of the rest of Christian Gloss’s life.
That’s right, our web developer did the cap and gown thing yesterday, receiving his Bachelors of Science degree in web design and interactive media from the Art Institute of York, PA.
Not only did he graduate with honors (3.92 gpa), he was awarded the Academic Director’s Merit Award, of which only one is given per graduating class.
The award, bestowed by the school’s faculty, recognizes an individual “as worthy of citation for attitude, virtue, and accomplishments characteristic of a professional.”
Then again, Christian has been a certified professional for months here at CH&B, juggling his duties as our web developer with his demands as a student. And he’s also a guy who ran his own web development business for years before deciding to return to school. He’s got it down.
So a tip of the old mortarboard to Christian for presenting the same excellence in the classroom that he brings to our offices every day of the workweek.