Ignite Howard County: A Recipe for Success

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Last night I had the pleasure of speaking at (and attending) HCEDA’s first-ever Ignite Howard County, a fast-paced and eclectic event aimed at bringing people together to share ideas and inspire new thinking. Consisting of 12 short presentations (5 minutes each), it was a top-notch success and here’s why:

Venue: Jailbreak was the perfect spot. Nice weather, doors open, beer flowing. You could tell people were dialed in to the event and the great space and fine drink helped solidify the atmosphere. Add a brick oven pizza truck and you’ve got a winner. Continue Reading »

Ignite a Spark & Tell a Story

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If there’s one thing we writers know, it’s how to tell a story. Inspiration comes to us from all sorts of different sources – a phrase, a song title, a piece of art, a conversation on a train. There’s an art to telling a story, to captivating an audience in a few short minutes or pages. Think of the best book you ever read, the best story you ever heard – did you fall head first into it, disappear into the world the storyteller created?

Storytelling is trending at the moment, with events and collaboration opportunities popping up all around the world. Here are a few that I’ve participated in (or will participate in) and find to be valuable – both personally and professionally. Continue Reading »

ADG’s 2015 Design Team Summit: Spark

Spark_logo_2colorIn February of this year, ADG’s design team took a break from regular work day activities and came together for the inaugural Design Team summit, titled, SPARK. Led by DCS Maribel Costa and ACD’s Mary Wilcox, Linda Rochelle, and Todd Fidelman, the summit consisted of workshops, discussions, games and presentations (and of course concluded with a happy hour) that inspired and challenged our thinking to “spark” new ideas. So what went on at the ADG SPARK Summit? The list of activities included:

•  Warm-Up: Superlatives Game – The designers started the day by breaking into two teams and were instructed to “reorder” themselves by a given category (such as ordering themselves by height as fast as possible, or by number of siblings, without talking). The goal was to first, get the designers up out of chairs and physically active in order to wake them up to the day ahead and to give them and opportunity to learn more about each other as individuals.
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Good Karma Friday: The Giving Keys

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Based in L.A., The Giving Keys is an organization that employees people transitioning out of homelessness to help them earn enough money to live independently. Employees are hired to help engrave old keys with inspiring words, which are meant to help spread positive and encouraging messages around the world. The concept is this: you buy a key with an inspirational word you need for yourself, and when the key has done its job encouraging you, you pass it along to someone else who needs it.

The Giving Keys was founded by actress and singer/songwriter Caitlin Crosby after she started wearing a New York hotel key as a necklace and happened to run into just the right people to help her start the business. You can hear the whole story in her TED Talk below.

 

 

7 SEO Mistakes We’re All Making

The One SEO Mistake You Don't Know You're Making

Search Engine Optimization (SEO): the process of getting traffic to your website through “free,” “organic,” “editorial,” or “natural” results on search engines.

The term “SEO” gets thrown around a lot in this digital age. It’s seen as a short-term solution to bolster page hits and up website traffic. It seems to me, though, that what SEO really requires is a long-range perspective – one where what we’re doing now benefits us in the future.

To make it a little less daunting (since I’m sure we’re all a little overwhelmed on the SEO front anyway), here’s a list of 7 SEO mistakes we’re all making now…or have made in the past. Continue Reading »

13 Ideas for Getting Other People to Write Your Content

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How do you avoid burnout and increase ownership in your organization’s content program? By boosting the number of voices and contributors. Is this incredibly difficult when you’re the most vested stakeholder in the content program? Of course, but it isn’t impossible. Below are some ideas and bonus insights for obtaining content from a variety of contributors; and no, I won’t apologize for using the word “leverage” so much.

Features, Interviews, Spotlights

President, CEO, Busy Executives
Get 10 minutes on their calendar; come to that meeting with your questions and a way to record it on audio. You’ll get plenty of content, but the hard part will be editing it down. Go for quality over quantity, though, and you won’t be disappointed.
Example: Alan D. Wilson.
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What is Re-Branding?

What is re-branding?

We’re driven by stories here at ADG and one word that we often use when it comes to helping companies tell their stories is the word “re-branding.” Sometimes we bring it up, sometimes a client does, but I recently realized that this term can mean a lot of different things depending on who you ask. I decided to get some answers on this so I went to ADG’s VP of Strategy, Evan Davis, with some questions about this “re-branding” thing and what it means for companies who are trying to navigate through and understand their own organizational identity.

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Bringing Home Some Fresh Awards from the 2015 ADDYs

Last night at the 2015 Baltimore ADDY Awards, aka Downton Addy, ADG won three shiny new ADDYs to bring home to our collection. We were honored with two Gold ADDYs for our Gumbo and Mistletoe invitations and a Silver ADDY for our St. Boniface beer can designs. Full award descriptions and pictures from the event are below, congrats to all our Creatives who contributed in so many way to pull off some amazing work!

Gold

Industry Self Promotion – Invitations, Cards or Announcements (Gumbo & Mistletoe)
Industry Self Promotion – Integrated Campaign (Gumbo & Mistletoe)

Silver

Sales Promotion – Packaging Single Unit (St. Boniface)
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About ADG

ADG Creative is a strategic communications firm specializing in branding, interactive, learning and gaming, and software development. We combine process, experience and extraordinary creative talent to tell our customers' stories in unique, memorable and usually unexpected ways, leveraging both conventional and new media platforms.