Via Colori | Live Street Painting, 200+ Artists, 3 Stages, Food Trucks and More!
Houston we have a street painting art festival at Downtown City Hall ! Be a part of this wondering event at 5 PM CST.
Houston we have a street painting art festival at Downtown City Hall ! Be a part of this wondering event at 5 PM CST.
This Thursday and Friday, our own photo rockstar Brian Potter along with Forsythe Fotography and Hassan Nadji Films, produced a photo series for our client BARC, the Bureau of Animal Regulation and Control for the City of Houston.
BARC is the City of Houston’s Animal Shelter and Adoption Facility. BARC is the only city shelter in Houston required by law to accept every animal that comes through our doors regardless of breed, temperament, health conditions, and circumstance. BARC contracted Schipul to provide marketing and branding consultation for a complete identity redesign. Over the last year, Schipul has produced a multi-media campaign titled “Find Your Spark at BARC” which includes three videos, “Pet Deposit“, “Text Messaging” and “BARC Houston: Our Story“.
We posted 66 blog posts this year on the Schipul blog about topics ranging from web marketing tips and tools, social media strategy, nonprofit marketing, and general geeky fun! Our top posts of 2012 cover topics from web analytics, new social media tools, client spotlights, and some Geek Love. We’ve put together a list of the top ten posts of 2012 for you to enjoy again!
Johnsie Michels lays out the quickest way to get started using Google Analytics’ new reporting features.
Caitlin Kaluza shares a poem on behalf of the Schipulites to our clients and community – sharing some Valentine’s Day Love!
Sarah M. Worthy walks through the extensive feature list of the new Google Plus Communities, including screenshots of how to use the features – and why they matter to you!
Back in February when Facebook first rolled out the new timeline view for pages, Caitlin Kaluza walks through the basics of getting started with the new features!
Derek Key shares his experience at the latest Cirque Du Soleil production to come to Houston – and shares beautiful photos of the event!
More Top Schipul Blog Posts of 2012!
Here’s to more Web Marketing goodness in 2013!
October is breast cancer awareness month and this weekend is the annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure event in Houston!
Schipul is honored to work with The Houston Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure as they fight to end breast cancer! Earlier this year we redesigned and rebuilt the Komen Houston website on the Tendenci CMS platform.
Read more about the website launch here!
We are also excited to be racing in the annual Race for the Cure tomorrow!
Today is Pink Out Day! All over Houston, people are wearing pink to support. Even City Hall will be lighting up pink today through Race Day!
The Schipul team got in the spirit as well! Check out our team decked out in pink!
We had a blast representing team Schipul at the annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure! Check out our team photos from the race!
As a newly adopted Schipul employee, I had the pleasure of attending The International Association of Business Communicators (IABC Houston) luncheon at Brennan’s of Houston, both of which are beloved Schipul clients.
Gina Rotolo was the guest speaker at the event and talked about juggling all details for big events. When most people think of a large event, they picture a wedding, a company party or corporate luncheon. In the case of BBVA Compass Stadium‘s seasoned Marketing, PR & Booking Manager Gina Rotolo, big (or huge) events consists of SXSW, Austin City Limits, the Texas Crawfish & Music Festival and the New Orleans Jazz Festival to name a few.
Large events require having funds and resources, as well as time to plan and organize all the details. What if you didn’t have much of these big three? What if you had little time, limited funds and a small team to get the ball rolling? Here are some key strategies and elements Gina talked about in order to hold a successful event that would put Robert Irvine from Dinner: Impossible to shame.
Think about your favorite event experience and how it made you feel – how do you want people to feel in return at your events? Know your audience and what details make the event more enjoyable to them.
Engaging people to develop a social media community is vital when it comes to open source promoting. As Gina pointed out, some people go to events just because ‘They want to be part of the experienceâ€. Wanting to share their experience makes audience to tap into social media, therefore promoting your client.
‘How do you represent a client you don’t know?â€ Never underestimate the value of research when it comes to organizing an event. Having constant contact with your client is key in order to keep the communication flowing. Moreover, how you communicate is vital. An email is seen as Gina’s last resource, she stresses phone calls and face time with clients in order to avoid any confusion about expectations.
Simply put, there is no such thing as a one man show and there is no ‘Iâ€ in Team. This stays true to event planning as it does in life. Value the people that you work with, because ultimately, they are the ones that help you reach your client’s expectations and goals.
Always, Always Co-Brand it. Co-branding with your partnerships is one of the best ways to keep your name out there. It might be on a banner, or a t-shirt or even a koozie, but having each company involved on these items is free advertisement on free items.
Higher priced items such as free concert or event tickets come with a loss, but the gain is much more valuable when placed in the right hands. Again, know your audience, what angle you are trying to promote, and who the key people to give these items to are.
To close this off, Gina left us with three short points to keep in mind:
*We appreciate IABC Houston and Gina Rotolo for this great event, for more pictures please refer to the Tendenci link below*
Check out all of the photos on our website! IABC Houston Luncheon: Juggling Big Events featuring Gina Rotolo Pictures
Last week on July 19th, IABC Houston held a special luncheon at Brennan’s of Houston – two Schipul clients in the same place! The food and venue were spectacular, as is expected with Brennan’s, but the special treat was the speaker. Originally, Nelson Luis, the Director of Media Relations for the Houston Rockets, and Kevin Cooper, the Senior Director of Communications for the Houston Texans, were supposed to speak. The topic was PR management in the professional sports industry; who better to learn from than PR’s most scrutinized industry.
Mr. Luis was not able to make it due to the Rockets recent acquisition of Jeremy Lin, the newest sensation from the New York Knicks. Lin had a big press conference that day and Nelson’s presence was required. Although we would have loved to hear from him, we all learned a lot from Mr. Cooper and his Q&A session about the Houston Texans’ organization.
Kevin Cooper has been with the Texans since 2002, and was promoted to Senior Director of Communications in May of 2011. He has worked in the league for 11 seasons and earned the title as second youngest head of communications for an NFL franchise. After working for 4 different franchises, Kevin is happy to be back in his hometown of Houston and still doing what he enjoys. I think everyone that attended the luncheon can agree that Kevin Cooper has the perfect personality and skill set to represent the communications department of the Houston Texans.
Kevin very politely dismissed the list of questions that the IABC members had for him and proposed a discussion based Q&A session. Very excited, the group began to fire off questions about the Texans and how they handle their very sensitive public relations strategy throughout the organization and across all the public mediums that exist today. Following are some of the major points that we learned from Kevin:
One of Kevin’s more emphasized points was that he begins building relationships with the players from an early point. He called relationships one of the “core values” of PR. Kevin pointed out that if you only come to someone when you need something, or when there is a crisis involving them, that they always dread seeing you. Not only that, but in the process you have built no trust or support that makes them want to come to you in a time of crisis. Relationship building is key for Kevin as he guides his players through the media spotlight and through tough situations. For this reason he does not communicate through agents but always speaks to players directly. I believe that this same concept applies to managers and employees in any type business.
This ties in very closely with relationship building. Kevin told us that Texans owner, Mr. McNair, clearly sets the tone for his team by saying “I don’t embarrass you; You don’t embarrass me”. With this clear communication of expectations, Mr. McNair has maintained a fairly healthy standing for his organization in the public eye. Kevin describes the Texans culture as a “family of men”. He explains that they do not avoid uncomfortable talks but instead come directly to each other and speak their minds whether it is talking about money or even changing teams. Communication is another of Kevin’s keys to PR.
Kevin said that he used to only be worried about possible media responses during press conferences and radio shows which were only during the working hours. Now Kevin has to be on alert 24 hours a day due to the fly by nature of social media, especially Twitter. Kevin explains to the players that things written over a tweet are just as powerful as a locker room interview. He tells players that if they wouldn’t say something in that scenario in front of their teammates, then they should definitely refrain from Tweeting it. He encourages players to not write things in the heat of the moment and if there’s any doubt to refrain altogether. As Kevin put it, “One line can rewrite an entire story.”
Dealing with real time media situations, Kevin shared some great insights that he has learned throughout his 11 seasons. He describes media as a “beast that will never be full”. With this in mind, Kevin has no problem saying no to the media. In fact, he prefers for his players to send the heat his way and let him be the bad guy. Kevin chooses to be prepared for everything, he says that crazy media questions are not the problem, its only the response that can cause damage. Kevin prefers his players not to answer if they are uncomfortable with any question, and that they can politely refuse or send them his way. The best thing to do in a crisis, says Kevin, is to keep quiet. As you can tell, Kevin prefers formulated responses over brash ones. Safe to say, I think these are best practices for any business regarding the media.
Everyone could tell that Kevin was genuine about the Texan organization appreciating their fans and community. The Texans make a point to provide public service to the community that supports them. In one of the more humorous moments of his talk, Kevin even referred to the Texan fans as a “good woman”. My personal favorite quote from Kevin involved his love for football and Houston. He said that despite race, sexual orientation, or status that “on Sundays at 7:00 pm, we’re all just Texans fans”.
*We appreciate IABC Houston and Kevin Cooper for this great event.*
The Houston Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure has granted over $9 million in grants nationally & $28 million in the 7 local counties it serves for breast cancer support & research. We are honored to work with this fantastic organization and are proud to showcase their newly launched website! The new site will further Komen Houston’s efforts and help organize the many volunteers, survivors, researchers, & event participants they touch!
The website is built on the Tendenci CMS & incorporates a new design from the Schipul team, including a Race for the Cure landing page design (Save the date! The Komen Houston Race for the Cure will be October 6, 2012). Other site features include:
Huge thanks to the fantastic team at Komen Houston for all of their work on the new site!
Check out the Komen Houston website at komen-houston.org!
We were privileged to attend the Susan G. Komen Houston Impact Awards Tuesday to honor individuals, corporations, community partners, & volunteers what have made an impact on Komen’s mission to end breast cancer.
In addition to honoring the great organizations who received grant money from Komen Houston this year ($3.04 million in total!), Komen also showcased the new website!
Below are some highlights in photos. View all of the photos in the Komen Houston Impact Awards Photo Album!
Schipulite Courtney Pemberton (middle) with members of the Komen team Tania Cruz (left) & Jean Henceroth (right)
Showing off the website on iPads live at the event
The new website on the screen with Master of Ceremonies KPRC Local 2’s Khambrel Marshall
The Schipul team sporting our pink in the Shutterbooth Photobooth!
View more event photos in our Komen Houston Impact Awards 2012 Photo Album!
Beginning this week, Schipul will be starting a spotlight series for our amazing clients. The series will highlight a different client each week on Facebook, and will include a monthly blog post dedicated to showing off one amazing client! This post is dedicated to Reliant Park and all the great things they’ve done for the Houston community.
Schipul will be giving away 2 free tickets to a Houston Texans preseason game! To be considered eligible, simply comment on this blog post or on this post on our Facebook page with your favorite story about Reliant Park. You can write an entire novel, or just 2-3 sentences, but either way Schipul wants to hear about it!
Don’t wait too late because the contest ends at noon CST on June 15. All participants before this date will be entered into a random drawing for the tickets. Read on for some examples of Reliant Park stories from the Schipulites. Good luck!
Reliant Park needs no introduction to the Houston community, but for the rest of the world: it’s Houston’s largest entertainment venue. Reliant Park holds 5 large venues including Reliant Stadium, home of the NFL Houston Texans, and the Astrodome, the old home of the Houston Astros and Houston Oilers. The park is famous for hosting the annual Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, the IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Houston, Wrestlemania, and countless concerts from the world’s biggest musical artists.
A few of Reliant Park’s many notable claims to fame include building the NFL’s first retractable roof stadium with Reliant Stadium, the Astrodome, being the first domed structure of its size, and the city’s METRORail station stop in the park that allows for cheap and easy transportation for site visitors. The park is also known for Janet Jackson’s infamous wardrobe malfunction at the halftime show of Super Bowl XXXVIII, and for giving shelter to thousands of Hurricane Katrina victims while they pieced their lives back together.
Schipul has been working with Reliant Park since developing their website in 2005. In 2011, Schipul began a new redesign project with Reliant Park to update the website design to reflect the park’s new branding. It was also important to Reliant Park to have a CMS that had content-adding friendly functionality that would include interactive maps with directions for parking, an extensive event calendar with search capability, and an array of rich media addition options to document all of their events.
Knowing that image means everything to an entertainment venue, the Schipul design team submitted multiple designs for the Reliant Park team. With the help of both teams, they were able to produce a functional, media-rich website that truly reflects the new Reliant Park branding. This 6-year business relationship has been maintained through Schipul’s commitment to customer service, and both company’s outstanding communication lines.
Check out the newest Reliant Park website!
After sending out an office email asking my co-workers to send me their favorite memory of Reliant Park, I was surprised to receive a quick response from a large amount of the office. The people of Houston absolutely love Reliant Park and have all had some experience there that they will never forget. Here are some of our stories:
We definitely have a large Aggie following in the Schipul office, starting with our CEO, Ed Schipul. Caitlin is one of the zealous office Aggie alumni. Her favorite memory of Reliant Park is “having a blast” while watching her fighting Texas Aggies in last year’s Meineke Car Care Bowl in Reliant Stadium. The Aggies were able to pull out their first bowl victory since 2001, with a score of 33-22 over Northwestern.
Courtney is one of the few and proud Dallas Cowboys fans in the office. She was able to buy tickets to the Houston Texans’ and Dallas Cowboy’s game in the 2010 NFL season as a birthday gift for her boyfriend who is a Texan fan. Fortunately for Courtney, the Dallas Cowboys managed to defeat the Texans that day with a score of 27-13. “It was glorious”, says Courtney. She also asks that you refrain from looking at her while you look at her picture.
Rachel loves the annual Nutcracker Market. She calls it “a little slice of Texas Christmas heaven”. Every year she and a close friend go through all the food and boutique booths. “Somehow my friend always ends up purchasing some very large physical object that we end up lugging all the way back to the car. Last year it was an ottoman!”
Ed is a known Reliant Park fan who has attended countless events: anything from WWF to dog shows. He most frequently visits Reliant Stadium to watch his Houston Texans. One of Ed’s many hobbies is photography. Check out some of his favorite pictures from Reliant Park on Ed’s Flickr account.
Of all the times Forrest has been to Reliant Park, his favorite memory is graduating in the Reliant Stadium. Forrest was amazed walking around the ground level of the stadium and walking through the tunnels. He “wondered who else had walked this same walk”. He still says that it can never replace the AstroDome as his favorite piece of Reliant Park history.
Sarah has been to so many Reliant Park events, from the Houston annual Rodeo to NCAA Championship games and trade shows; she’s done it all. Her best memories of Reliant Park are taking her son the the circus, and to see his pure joy from the train ride to the circus.
Sarah specifically appreciates Reliant Park’s wide array of vendors and the decongested ride into the park on the city’s MetroRail.
Check out more of Sarah’s circus photos on her Flickr account.
Dharol is a season ticket holder to the Houston Texan games, and has also been to the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo several times. She enjoys the cleanliness, the cowboy statue, the open dome, and the ability to take the metro there on gamedays. Dharol’s favorite memory is the “unmatched energy” of the Texan fans all the way through the last minutes of fourth quarter last season when they defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Katrina visited Reliant Park to see John Legend at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo last year. She went with Schipul co-workers Cindi Crigler and Rodney Sabrsula. She loved the carnival, the concert, and how helpful the Reliant staff were. She described it as a “great experience.”
Now it’s your turn – share your favorite Reliant Park memory in the comments or on this post on our Facebook page to win two tickets (& a parking pass) to the first Houston Texans pre-season game Saturday August 15 vs. the San Francisco 49ers! We will randomly select a winner at noon central time on June 15th.
Southwest Airlines: Nuts About Social Media!
It was my first time at Brennan’s, one of Houston’s most prestigious restaurants (and also a Schipul client). The atmosphere was very formal, but the speaker, Brooks Thomas (@brooksethomas) of Southwest Airlines (@SouthwestAir) Emerging Media team was quite exuberant and quickly made it an entertaining afternoon of knowledge sharing.
Brooks serves as the Managing Editor for the Nuts About Southwest, their award winning blog that gives a voice to the employees and customers of Southwest. He began his presentation on the evolution of storytelling and how our society has formed so many platforms of expression: phone calls, texting, emails, Facebook, Twitter, and so many more. All age groups are getting in on this social media frenzy, including 50-something -year-olds (they’re the fastest growing group of users beeteedubs). And social media is literally at our fingertips; 40% of social media users access it through their phones.
I’m glad you asked. Every employee has the opportunity to be a reporter. This way you can create a sort of “corporate newsroom” with in your company. He shares, “Empower your employees to have a voice and compelling stories will happen.”
Browse for content everywhere. You never know where a great story could come from. Your field employees can be pitchers, facilitators and reporters. This comes easier with an established internal communications team, education in storytelling, and empowering your people.
I especially agreed with his point, “It’s a lot easier to catch a story when you’re ahead of it.”
AKA: Be prepared! Know your plans. Know what’s visual. Know your time frame. If you have a store opening coming up, get those cameras there to record it, tell people about it to get them to come, know when and where everything is happening so that you are READY when the time comes and you can get the best possible coverage of that story.
“We are story telling and everyone has a story. It is your job to find out what’s compelling on a day to day basis,” he said.
Also, to stay organized; keep your content rolling; and post on schedule, create an editorial calendar and set at least 2 weekly times to post so your customers have something to see on a regular basis. No more than 4 franchise posts a week because that’s when it gets too difficult to keep up with.
Hearing from Brooks and how Southwest Airlines manages their online presence and relationships with consumers was inspiring, to say the least. It’s easy to get caught up in tools and technology, but Brooks didn’t delve into that. His focus remained on the content and the people — it was about the stories and how we relate to one another.
It was a great afternoon of laughter and learning about why Southwest is such a powerful presence in the social media world and blogosphere.
This weekend is the Space City Classic Gymnastic Invitational, held February 3rd-5th at the Legends Sports Complex in Spring. The Classic is hosted by Team Cypress of Cypress Academy of Gymnastics in Houston, TX and a portion of all of the proceeds from the event will go to The Greater Houston Gymnastics Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization. Schipul is proud to sponsor this great event!
The Space City Classic website is built with Tendenci Content Management System Community Edition. The site features include a large homepage rotator, News feed, Event Calendar, and Membership Login Area.
“The Greater Houston Gymnastics Foundation is extremely thankful for the support of Schipul and the Tendenci website platform in helping us revolutionize our presence on the web. Not only does the quality of product improve the reputation of our meets and organization, but the simplicity and intuitive design constructs of Tendenci make web development, enhancement and daily use extremely attractive. The fact that I didn’t have to train users on how to interface with our operations through the website says enough!”
– David Duren, The Space City Classic