Tag Archives: Marketing

Boston’s GOT Night at Fenway Park!

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While I’ve been finishing up the newest season of Scandal on Netflix, a lot of people have been raving over the newest season of Game of ThronesGame of Thrones is the most popular HBO series that has won the highest amount of Emmy awards so far.  George R.R. Martin’s famed series has taken off since its start and fans are still reading his novel to this day.  Game of Throne (GOT) fans can’t get enough of the amazing fantasy series since it began in 2011.

Image result for Game of Thrones Promotional products

Image result for Game of Thrones Promotional products

It’s no secret that the GOT brand has been sweeping the stores.  Promotional products such as apparel, calendars, mugs, toys, posters, blankets, games, and many other items have been popular among its audience.  To think that all of this genius marketing promotion stemmed from Martin’s novel A Song of Fire and Ice that became a hit series on HBO.  Not only has the show gained so much popularity, but the GOT brand itself has spread to other marketing platforms.  One of those platforms hit one of the most famous landmarks of Boston.

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Brace yourself folks – Game of Thrones night is coming to Fenway Park tonight!  Fenway Park is promoting a GOT theme in honor of the latest season dropping on Sunday.  The Red Sox are facing off against the Toronto Blue Jays at 7:10 PM in this epic GOT them night.

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For an added promotional bonus, each ticket package through the special offer will include a Ser Andrew Benintendi bobble-head.  Other than the bobble head, fans will have the chance to sit on the infamous Iron Throne for a photo opportunity (which runs from 5 PM-5:40 PM).  The opportunity will be offered on a first-come, first-serve basis only.  Serious GOT who are in the Boston area should check out this awesome Red Sox game tonight!

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As a Boston PR pro, I have to say that this idea is GENIUS.  This event we have going on is what is known as a cross-marketing technique.  Cross-marketing is a unique form of cross-promotion where companies include extra appeals to the product or service they offer.  In short, it’s when one company works with another company to promote each other in one single marketing strategy.  The trick is searching for a product/service that would complement your work as well.

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Image result for Mortal Kombat X Beers

One great example I can think of were the Mortal Kombat X franchise beers that were released last year.  Sound Brewery in Poulsbo, Washington released three limited edition craft beers based on some popular characters from Mortal Kombat.  Raiden, Scorpion, and Sub-Zero were the main characters from the game Mortal Kombat X that was coming out soon; Sound Brewery cross-marketed their brews with the Mortal Kombat brand for an ingenious marketing tactic (you can read up more about that marketing miracle here).

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Image result for Boston Red Sox

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Today we have the popular HBO series Game of Thrones teaming up with the Boston Red Sox for an epic GOT theme night at Fenway Park.  The Ser Andrew Benintendi bobblehead and Iron Throne photo-shoot add to the interactive experience fans will have at the game.  This bold marketing move crosses the Boston Red Sox audience with the GOT audience together for one epic themed night.  It’s marketing ideas like this that help business reach a deeper connection with their audiences.  Boston is truly proud of the Red Sox, but some long for the Game of Thrones series once baseball season is over.

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I really like where Fenway Park is going with these theme nights!  While I’m not the biggest GOT fan nor do I have the time to check out a Red Sox game, I do appreciate these awesome marketing promotions they are hosting.  Sports marketing was a great class to take at Salem State University and I really got a lot out of the course (even though sports isn’t my major specialty!).  This is one of those instances where the skills and knowledge you learn in the communications classes apply to real world situations.

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Kudos to the Boston Red Sox for showcasing a great example of cross-marketing!  It’s nights like this that show where the true Sox fans are around Boston.

My last message to end this would be…GO SOX!



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So other than American Horror Story rolling out their new season in the fall (which I have some REAL juicy updates about for later!), the other amazing series that’s coming back is Stranger Things!  The nostalgic sci-fi 80’s themed Netflix show will be back for its second season where we see what lies next for the kids.  Teasers/trailers have been promoted all across the social media platforms; but the real talk of the town lies within the newest poster.

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Netflix unveiled their newest poster for Stranger Things season 2, which will air on October 27th.  The poster depicts the gang (Dustin, Eleven, Will, and Lucas) on their bikes in an endless road as the watch the sky turn to chaos.  As the sky turns demonic red, a new monster is spurring out from the darkened clouds.  Beneath the clouds sheds a myriad of colors from a light bright orange to a midnight blue.  All we know for sure is that the gang will heading back to the upside-down world next season!

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Rather than ponder about the clues for the next season, I really couldn’t stop thinking about how amazingly creative this poster was!  One of my favorite features has to be that spread of colorful light underneath the demonic-red clouds.  That endless road dividing the line really captures that symbolism between light and dark.  It’s interesting how closely it resembles the retro 80’s movie posters.  Whatever the advertising pros were drawing up for the promotions, they definitely hit the nail on the head (they deserve a free round of drinks for how AMAZINGLY AWESOME the poster looks!).

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Stranger Things was a whole new nostalgic-80s idea I really got into last year.  As short as the first season was, it definitely grabbed my attention from the start.  It really is a great nod to how they advertised movie posters during the 80s (like for E.T. or Star Wars!).  I definitely dig a good nostalgic series and Stranger Things is really the way to go!

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In the end, the advertising pros knocked it out of the park with the Stranger Things posters.  All it takes is one beautiful promotional poster to get the social media folks talking (a picture IS worth a thousand words you know!).  All it takes is for a unique grabber within the image to capture your audience’s attention.  Whether the focus is towards the actor/actress or the action happening within the background, something must be the point of focus within the whole image.  This is the kind of secret that separates a good poster from a bad one.  If you’re sending mixed messages within your promotional poster, then your audience will be turned off from the whole idea.

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And yes, Netflix’s newest Stranger Things poster is one of the good ones.  It obviously did well by grabbing lots of attention among the social media realm.  These are the promotional posters that aspiring marketing/advertising/PR pros should all pay attention to in the years to come.  Even if you’re not an artist yourself, the hidden trick you must learn is how those features will snag your target audience’s attention towards the product or service.

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Take notice, people – THIS is one of examples of marketing promotion success!


Get Your Craft on at DIY Bar!

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Image result for Boston Bars

One of the things I love most about Boston is the eclectic choices of bars around the city.  Some bars specialize on craft beers (my personal favorite kind of brews!) while others shift their focus towards a product strategy.  Either way, there’s always some random spot I haven’t drank at that I have to check out.

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With so many choices to choose from, the intriguing part is discovering what makes them tick.  Just a few nights ago I went into this awesome place called Four Winds Bar & Grill that had that neighborhood feel where the people would remember you.  Not only was the food amazing, but the bartenders were so friendly that I stayed a few more minutes after finishing my meal!  On a random note, I’ll post up a list of neighborhood bars around Boston if I find more.

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Image result for Boston Bars

Back to my point, cities like Boston or Salem have those unique restaurant or bars that customers remember.  Whether it is simply rotating drinks or having live music, there’s always some unique selling point that will keep your customers staying longer.  Audiences stay longer when there is an interesting theme within the bar.  Boston sure has some vivid bar themes, but a Portland, Oregon has a bar with a DIY theme.

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Nestled on 3522 North Vancouver Avenue is DIY Bar, a joint specializing in beers and craft projects.  DIY Bar opened in Spring 2017, a place where customers can choose from a variety of craft projects to work on while sipping on their favorite wine, cider, or beer.  Projects range from easy to hard and take about 1-3 hours to complete.  It’s the perfect joint to get your craft on while sipping on your favorite brew!

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DIY Bar definitely has a great unique selling point here!  The USP of providing fun crafts to do will pull audiences into the establishment, having them stay longer and drink more.  Other than the drinks, it’s a great craft place to socialize with other patrons about their work as well.  While the price may be high ($39 for each project!), it would definitely be worth checking out.

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We need more places like DIY Bar around this country.  What makes it so special is the USP of doing craft projects while drinking with your friends.  This is definitely a place I could see myself going with my friends in the future.

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This sounds like an awesome place!  I’ve been to bars that had arcade games (BitBar Salem and A4cade in Cambridge!), but this idea sounds really captivating.  Not sure if something like this is around Boston, but this would definitely fit well with the city.  As a matter of fact, Boston should think about establishing a bar with a writing theme to it (lots of famous writers started in Boston, FYI!).

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Image result for Unique Bar

There’s always some grand idea that’s part of the USP for a bar.  Sometimes you have to think outside the box to pinpoint your main theme for your audiences.  A bar or restaurant isn’t nothing without some USP that would distinguish itself from the competition (otherwise it’ll become another monotonous chain restaurant!).

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With that, I’m so grateful to stumble upon this awesome gold I dug up in the internet.  DIY Bar is definitely something to check out if you enjoy completing DIY craft projects.

Viva Pot Vegas!

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           Hope you folks have been having a great week so far!  Summer is here and we’re just a few days away from entering July (almost six months have passed, damn does time fly!).  Either way, it’s just the beginning of another beautiful summer month.  July 1st is also very special day for the stoners over in Nevada.

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On July 1st, Nevada will open up their recreational cannabis shops.  About 17 shops will be opening on Saturday and almost 40 could be approved to sell as well.  Some outlets are planning a grand midnight opening while one in Las Vegas is having a barbecue with some raffle drawings.  Not only will recreational shops open, but medicinal dispensaries will go recreational as well.  And the best part?  There will be dispensaries around the Las Vegas Strip.

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Image result for Las Vegas Strip

Ok let’s back up for one goddamn second…RECREATIONAL CANNABIS…will become legal to purchase in a few days what’s known as ‘America’s Playground’.  This is the city where you can legally carry your booze around the street while hitting the casinos with your bros.  Not only that, but prostitution is still legal in some Nevada counties (brothels are STILL open in this 21st century folks!).  All I can say now is that Sin City is about to get a WHOLE lot better!
Let’s recap on what will now be accessible on sin city:

  • Gambling
  • Booze (carrying it around the strip as well!)
  • Prostitution

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Just…WOW.  What a time to be alive in this progressive 4/20-era!  Las Vegas is about to get a lot more interesting in the years to come (please excuse me while I send hundreds of resumes to PR companies there — #420NevadaLife).

Image result for Las Vegas Hotel

Image result for Las Vegas Hotel

Now that I got my 4/20 mindgasm out of the way, here is what I’m so damn excited about.  Las Vegas receives a majority of profits through tourism/hospitality (it’s known as ‘The Entertainment Capital of the World’, FYI!).  A majority of people travel to Nevada just for Las Vegas to do some gambling, stay at a pampering hotel, and eat some magnificent food on the strip.  Nevada voted to legalize recreational cannabis last year and now the dispensaries are opening up in just THREE DAYS!  More than half of the dispensaries sales are expected to be from the 40 million tourists visiting Sin City.  If you do the math real quick (2-3 dispensaries plus 40 million tourists roaming around the Las Vegas strip) then you’ll know that Nevada will be hitting some MAJOR profits!

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So besides the amazing marketing miracle that the dispensaries will be bringing to Las Vegas, The state of Nevada will hit the financial jackpot with the cannabis sales.  Nevada is expecting to hit sales much farther than Colorado or Oregon during the first week (the population is much greater BECAUSE of its bolder reputation!).  It will also be such a great PR move for Nevada being that they’ll receive more profits, attract more tourists, and even extend their branding tools to rejuvenate themselves for the years to come.

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There is a whole new gold rush happening in the Wild Wild West folks and the Golden Nugget could be replaced by the Golden Nug (weed pun, hah!).  Seriously though, this is major news for Las Vegas as well as the state of Nevada.  It’ll be interesting to see how Nevada fares with recreational sales for the next six months until California enters the market (when the Golden State legalizes in January 1st, 2018).  Would Las Vegas be able to hold up against their competitions a year later?

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Let’s not jump to far ahead though.  Instead, we should be psyched that Sin City will become much more sinful once cannabis hits the shelves.  We should be all be ecstatic over Las Vegas hitting another jackpot this summer.

In the end, always remember this  — what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!

Cannabis Banking: Mo’ Money, Mo’ Problems!

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Cannabis has quickly become the new #1 cash crop in America since being legal in Colorado and Washington.  Legal states have seen billions of dollars raking in from cannabis sales.  Everything from flowers, edibles, concentrates, tinctures, capsules, and other cannabis products are selling like hot cakes each month.  These products are in high demand and the cash flow is coming in faster than ever.

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Colorado, the state where recreational use was first made legal, has seen widespread benefits in the increasing cash flow.  In an ironic twist, all of the finances from this so-called ‘drug’ is actually helping the state flourishing.  The Centennial state utilized the finances to fix roads, upgrade their educational system, better education on legal cannabis use, and even day centers for the homeless.  All of these public benefits Colorado is seeing are from selling pot.

Even with these amazing financial benefits, there is one MAJOR problem that still needs to be solved: banking.  Since cannabis is still federally-illegal, many banks refuse to conduct business with cannabis companies because of federal regulations.  These federal regulations have opted many dispensaries out of a safe financial system that would help business run smoothly.  Instead, many businesses have been forced to operate strictly on cash alone (which is REALLY bad!).

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These strict financial regulations pose major business problems for many companies.  One of the main problems is financial security.  Many businesses are operating on cash, meaning they have no financial services set up.  Since the finances are tracked through dollar bills, employees must work to keep track thousands of dollars in their office.  The only secure solution would be to have a huge safe in place to store all of the profits in.  Dispensaries are one of many businesses that are in danger of being robbed if necessary procedures aren’t in place (if you think a medical dispensary won’t ever get robbed, you couldn’t be any more wrong!).  No set financial services mean businesses have a HUGE risk of being robbed if their profits isn’t properly secured.

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Onto a less serious issue, no set financial services mean there’s limited creativity with financial promotion.  Promotion, one of the four P’s of the marketing mix (price, place, promotion, and product!), is a crucial tactic of lifting your business off of the ground.  Your dispensary may be fully operating, but it’s nothing without many marketing promotion to raise awareness of your business.  Most dispensaries provide an ATM so that customers will have the cash for the product they want.  It seems to help, but doesn’t really solve the bigger problem of the financial operations.

What if someone really wants to use their debit/credit card instead?  If someone wanted to write up a check, how would it be processed?  Would gift cards ever become an option to use?

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It may seem trivial, but it’s important for serving every type of customer that comes in.  Gift cards are a great strategy for promoting the business.  If a bank won’t work with a dispensary due to legality issues, then gift cards won’t be a payment option for people.  Other than gift cards, customers could be turned off by the fact they won’t be able to write off a check or use a debit/credit card to pay for their order.

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So those were some problems I found that need to be solved if we want to push the cannabis industry any further.  A majority of dispensaries are operating on a cash-only basis, which means they are in danger of being robbed.  Not only do they face the danger of being robbed, but they are limited in their marketing creativity.  The cannabis industry has been gaining leverage since legalization has been making waves over the past few years, but there’s still work to be done to increase its full potential.

I believe it is important to solve these financial roadblocks before pushing further.  Massachusetts will have legal dispensaries opening next July, so we must get the financial operations squared away.  We have to be pushing forward, not backwards.

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The cannabis industry is here to stay, federal regulations or not.  Banking companies should work to solve the financial regulations that are hindering the businesses from growing further.