2013 MarCom Entry, Nationwide Insurance

Winner: Nationwide Insurance
Title of Entry: “Seven Days”
Location: Columbus, OH
Client: National Fair Housing Alliance
Category: 263. Nonprofit

NW_FrameEveryone knows about the political strides made in the 60’s that opened the voting process, job opportunities, and education to all Americans…especially African Americans. But what is often overlooked or forgotten is another piece of landmark legislation that broke down housing barriers and put an end to the slogan, “not in my neighborhood”.

To honor that momentous occasion of 1968, Nationwide Insurance produced a documentary which was presented during the National Fair Housing Alliance’s annual convention. The documentary, “Seven Days”, is riveting film that blends historical footage, animations, and graphics to capture the tone of the times.


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This Week’s Latest Tech Gadgets – Oct. 14, 2013

By Gregg Ellman

Since I’m a two-time back surgery patient, I couldn’t refuse to try the Homedics Rapid Relief electronic pain relief pad.

I used it on my lower back, but different models can be used where ever it hurts; back, arms, legs, etc.

It uses over-the-counter wireless transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (impulses) to help block nerves from transmitting pain signals to the body’s pain center.

I applied it to my lower back on mid-strength and at least in my mind it helped. It measure 4.5 x 3 – inches and takes a lithium battery, which is less then a quarter-inch think.

It has 15 intensity levels and I had it toward the upper half of the middle settings.

The GEL pad is reusable and refills are available at $9.99 for two sets. Each GEL and battery is good for about 50 20-minute treatments.

A storage case is included.

My personal doctor has recommended this type of pain relief so it’s fine in my case. Everyone can’t be the same so follow the instructions for proper use and consult your doctor if necessary.

www.homedics.com $29.99


HiRise iPhone 5 iPad miniThe Twelve South HiRise for iPhone5/iPad mini is a sturdy aluminum stand with a Lightning Cable dock connector for the newer Apple devices supporting that connection.

Twelve South is a company that not only makes great and useful products, but seems to have the system down to match the Apple culture for the modern look on accessories that are well constructed.

The HiRise doesn’t come assembled but only takes a few minutes to get it standing.

After you dock your iOS device, it rises several inches for easy viewing and will charge and/or sync, depending on your preference.

Since the charging port is on the bottom of your device, it only works in portrait mode when docked on the HiRise. The dock doesn’t block the microphone or speaker, allowing hands-free use.

The stand was able to hold an iPhone 5 (i’m sure the 5s as well) and an iPad mini without a problem.

Along with the stand, they include a dock adapter to support your device with carrying case. No one can guarantee every case will work, but the few I tried were problem free.

www.TwelveSouth.com $34.99


SealCase GalaxyKeystone has launched a watertight SealCase for the Samsung Galaxy S4 and iPhone 5/5s.

All functions are available in the single piece case including talking, texting, photos, videos, all your apps and charging.

To get your phone sealed, just unlock the latch, put your phone in and close it shut. The latches and seals keep everything intact.

Just like any waterproof device, I always recommend testing it out in a sink before taking it to heavier use.

It’s waterproof up to 6.6-feet but makes great protection on land from dirt, dust and sand.

concordkeystone.com $69.99 for the case, which includes a lanyard. A belt clip is available for $20

Contact Gregg Ellman at greggellman@mac.com.
Follow him on Twitter: @greggellman.
2013, Gregg Ellman.


2013 MarCom Entry, LPL Financial

Winner: LPL Financial
Title of Entry: “Mid-Year Outlook 2013: Converging on the Path of Least Resistance”
Location: San Diego, CA
Category: 92. Brochure

LPL FinancialBrochures are ubiquitous in the financial world.  They advise, inform, or drive sales.  Most brochures are simply words on paper with some pictures and graphics thrown in to enliven a page or make a point.  LPL Financial created one brochure that clearly stands out among the rest.  LPL is a company with 3,000 employees, spread among three different cities.  LPL advises the advisors, both independent and institutional.  LPL recently created a thematic brochure looking ahead to mid year 2013, which takes advisors hiking over a meandering trail through the woods.  The graphics play off the theme laying out important information in a highly stylized fashion.  This is one of those brochures that even a layman can understand.



2013 MarCom Awards Deadline today!

new logo2It’s not too late to register and enter the 2013 Marcom Awards competition!  
In most cases it takes less than five minutes to register, enter and upload entries. No late fees. Individual entries are $65, campaigns are $150.

Results will be mailed and winners posted Nov. 1, so you won’t have to wait long!

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2013 MarCom Entry Deveney Communication

Winner: Deveney Communication
Title of Entry: “Peoples Health – CHA – Television Spots”
Location: New Orleans, LA
Client: Peoples Health
Category: 252c. Campaign

Deveney ProductionsIn Louisiana, if there is one thing natives like as much as food it is their LSU Tigers.  The Louisiana State University tiger is a statewide icon, but it represents more than athletics.  LSU also runs a health system.  Recently LSU teamed with People’s Health to provide services for Medicare enrollees. Deveney Communications developed a clever commercial campaign surrounding “Mike” the tiger, who apparently likes working-out with older people.  Deveney, based in New Orleans, counts Fortune 100 companies as its clients and has been named one of America’s “Top Five Boutique PR Firms” by  PR Week. The campaign ‘green screen’s’ Mike into various situations as he interacts with people exercising and medical professionals working.  It’s all done with wink-and-a-nod while conveying a strong branding tool to a new partner.


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2013 MarCom Deadline Tomorrow!

Header_2morrow2Judging is winding down in the 2013 MarCom Awards.  Enter today and you won’t have to wait long to see if your work is judged to be among the industry’s best. Results will be mailed and winners posted Nov. 1.

In most cases it takes less than five minutes to register, enter and upload entries. No late fees. Individual entries $65, campaigns $150.




2013 MarCom Entry, inferno

Winner: inferno
Title of Entry: “Darn Good Yarn”
Location: Memphis, TN
Client: FedEx
Category: 221. YouTube Video

inferno logoStorytelling is an age-old art mastered by few.  When you get it right it seems effortless and surprisingly easy. But it’s not. Inferno of Memphis, Tennessee knows how to tell a good story. One of the agency’s clients, Fed Ex, wanted to highlight customers who have been helped by its worldwide delivery services…small businesses not located in a major metropolitan area.

This led to a video of a business with a global supply chain operating out of a home in the backwoods of North Maine. Many corporations, educational institutions, and law firms try to tell a story through their CEOs, presidents, and principal partners. They put them in front of a camera, let it roll, and then place video over the narration with a little music thrown it. If you want to know how it is done right, watch Inferno’s YouTube video. It really is “A Darn Good Yarn”.


This Week’s Latest Tech Gadgets – Oct. 8, 2013

By Gregg Ellman

Belkin HD Bluetooth Music
Seems like this is a week for Bluetooth technology and for those who are still in love with an older stereo or TV, the Belkin HD Bluetooth music receiver is a perfect accessory.

The HD receiver brings together your old system with any device having Bluetooth technology, including iOS and Android-based devices.

Setting it up is simple; plug the HD receiver into your existing system with the included cables (3.5mm to RCA and coaxial HD Audio cables) and pair the receiver with your Bluetooth device. The pairing is done with a simple tap of your device to the new receiver.

For users of Android 4.0 or 4.0.1, you’ll need the free Belkin BT app for the tap-and-play feature.

From there the receiver allows your handheld media player to send any audio files you have stored on it to the existing speaker systems.

Up to eight devices and can be stored in the receiver.

www.Belkin.com $59.99
Monster iSport FreedomSince Monster’s iSport Freedom headphones are wireless with Bluetooth, one you slip them over your ears they make you feel like your listening to a live concert on the go.

Along with the great sound, the iSport gives you a resistant , sweatproof and even washable design.

A multi-function key controls the power, volume, next or previous track and even allows you to answer calls. Obviously, there is a built-in microphone at the base of one ear cups..

The iSport Freedom headphones are made with a fashionable neon green design, a rubberized finish, and a reflective safety trim for night time use.

Each ear cup is comfortably padded with 400mm drivers sending out the great sound and are connected with a flexible headband.

There’s also a 3.5mm connection if you want a wired connection with the included in-line mic cable.

www.monsterproducts.com $249.95


SoundDewThe WhiteLabel SoundDew water resistant Bluetooth speaker is music-friendly at home, work or play _ even including the shower.

What makes it waterproof and somewhat indestructible is a internal protective water- and dirt-resistant housing encased with a rubberized outside shell.

The design incorporates a hook on the speaker to let it hang from anything that will hold it including belts, backpacks and handlebars.

The sound quality from the 3-inch speaker is impressive and the portability makes it a great accessory.

An 3.5mm aux-in lets you plug in non-Bluetooth devices for listening and a built-in mic lets it work as a handsfree speaker phone.

www.whitelabel.co/SoundDew $49.99 available in blue, black, khaki and red


PrintStikThe PlanOn Printsik PS905ME printer has a line on the box “Print anything, anywhere in just seconds” and after you see it in person, you’ll see this is an accurate statement.

It’s small, portable and very easy to use.

Measuring just 11 x 2 x 2-inches makes it easy to store in a backpack to print boarding passes, movie tickets or anything you have to have on paper right there and then.

It’s designed to be cable-free and connects to your smartphone or tablet with Bluetooth but can connect with the included USB cable. Power is supplied by the built-in rechargeable lithium-Polymer batter.

The paper is stored on a 20-sheet roll cartridge (one included) and the whole setup is stored in a nylon zipper case.

All of the controls including power, a paper feed and a battery level indicator are easily accessed on the side.

When you consider how big and clunky our first home printers were, this one is pretty amazing for document printing.

www.PlanOn.com $299 for the printer, 3 print cartridges with 20 pages each $29.99

Contact Gregg Ellman at greggellman@mac.com.
Follow him on Twitter: @greggellman.
2013, Gregg Ellman.


2013 MarCom Entry, HBO Poland

Winner: HBO Poland SP.20.0.
Title of Entry: “We Want Your Blood”
Location: Warsaw, Poland
Client: HBO Poland
Category: 161c. Special Event
HBO logoVampire stories travel well.  In this case, all the way from the United States to Poland. True Blood, HBO’s hit series, was preparing for a new season in Poland and wanted to promote the program, but after five seasons what do you do? The premium network decided to utilize the show’s theme and couple it with public service.

HBO designed a replica bar from the show in central Warsaw and then brought in a mobile blood bank to park outside. The event ‘We Want Your Blood’ coinciding with international blood day. Sexy vampires prowled the streets persuding passers-by to give a pint. In the bar, look alike actors from the series dressed like waitresses plied patrons with non-alcoholic libations. The event generated national headlines gaining free publicity across media platforms.  Blood given was more than three times the previous year. As far as the premiere of the show, ratings increased 40 per cent from season five. HBO not only created a buzz and increased viewrship, but promoted itself as a socially responsible network with edgy ideas and good shows. 

HBO poloand


2013 MarCom Entry, Greenfield/Belser

Winner: Greenfield/Belser
Title of Entry: “Dow Lohnes Website”
Location: Washington, DC
Client: Dow Lohnes
Category: 236. Website Redesign
GreenfieldBelser logoGreenfield/Belser of Washington D.C. is a brand design firm that prides itself on telling clients’ stories in a unique and clever fashion. The story telling takes many forms for it’s professional services clients…videos, brochures, annual reports, and websites.
One of the company’s areas of expertise is branding and selling law firms, which is no easy task. Greenfield/Belser was one of the first to breakdown the staid barriers of legal promotion in the 1980’s, “tossing out the images of fluted columns and scales-of justice”. It’s award winning entry is a website for the DowLohnes law firm.
Creative and refreshing are usually not the words associated with a law firm, but the DowLohnes website is both, plus some. The home page, eye catching and smartly designed, smoothly leads visitors to other portals.  Dowlohnes offers a host of legal services ranging from communications to entertainment and the website lays them out in a logical and easy to follow manner. The website blends sharp graphics, friendly photographs, and concise text to tell the firm’s story. After navigating through the pages, a visitor feels that he not only knows these lawyers and understands what they do, but likes them!