Welcome our storytelling summer intern, Joey!

Welcome to #teamME (again!). Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m a senior Journalism and Economics student at Miami University, born and raised in Columbus. I’m interested in storytelling and I can’t wait to get started this summer doing some exciting work in PR!

 

OK, now it’s time for some rapid fire.

 

If you could have a cup of coffee with anyone, who would it be?

Jordan Peele. Key can come too.

 

What’s your spirit animal?

The fox. I really dig that sly and mysterious vibe

 

What was your first email address? (Don’t be shy.)

jsquad31@yahoo.com. I still use it for spam.

 

What was your first job?

Summer camp counselor.

 

What’s the next country you want to travel to?

Hungary. Budapest was the only major city that I wanted to visit but couldn’t when I was studying abroad.

 

If you were a Crayola crayon, what would your name be?

Zesty Orange. Zesty anything, really.

 

Where do you go to college?

Miami University.

 

Phew. What a doozy. Catch your breath and tell us what you do at MurphyEpson.

As an intern, I’m trying to gain experience in all facets of the advertising and public relations industry. Some of my responsibilities include helping set up for public events, sitting in on meetings, in-person communication and writing drafts for client’s projects. Basically, I insert myself wherever I can help #teamME.

 

What do you do outside of work?

Go out with friends, play board games, read and work on extracurricular projects.

 

MurphyEpson has cultivated quite the culture of philanthropy. What’s your favorite way to give back to the community?

I love to participate by volunteering in community events such as 5Ks or city parades put on by the Recreation Department in my home town of Bexley.

 

You’ve got one day in Columbus. What do you do?

Spend the day at the Short North and then see either the Clippers or the Jackets game in the evening, depending on the season.

 

Give us a note you’d like to end on.

Go RedHawks!

Fathers Day

Dads Know Best: The best advice our fathers ever gave us

Dads say the darnest things, but sometimes they say the sweetest. Just in time for Father’s Day, #teamME spent some time reflecting on the best advice our dad’s ever passed down to us.

Enjoy the wealth of #teamME dad wisdom:

“The man who knows how will always have work. The man who knows why will be bossin’ the jerk. And the one who knows why and can make it sell, will run the company, and be rich as well.” – Marie Keister, President + CEO

 

“My Dad has always told me (in my career and personal life) to appreciate people for who they are and not try to change them. I think this has really taught me to be compassionate to others. He also leads by example with this, he has never tried to force me into any decision and trusts in who I am. I think that’s pretty awesome.” – Erin Hanna, Art Director

 

“I was sobbing after my third car accident in about 6 months during college when I called my dad who had just moved out of state. He said, “Are you hurt? Is the other person hurt?” I said no one was hurt, but proceeded to tell him my car was un-drivable. Dad told me that’s what insurance is for and to call my agent. He knew how to put things in perspective and focus on the positive which he did for me right up until he died on Father’s Day in 2012.” – Cindy Byington, Senior Account Manager

 

“The best advice my dad has given me is to take on opportunities that bring me outside my comfort zone, because it’s those experiences that will help me grow as a person.” – Mitchell Isler, Intern

 

“Slow down and take life one day at a time,” and “Make sure you’re changing your furnace air filter every 4 months.” – Nick Hoffman, Account Manager

 

“My dad was always advising me to be patient – a skill I’m still learning to master to this day I regularly hear one of these when we’re together:
“Mindy, remember patience is a virtue”
“Don’t forget that patience is bitter, but it’s fruit is sweet”
“Say your prayers Mindy: Lord give me patience, and give it to me now” – Mindy Justis, Senior Account Manager

 

“The best advice my dad ever gave me was when he told me that when something bad happens or goes wrong, you have the choice to either dwell on it or move on and overcome it. He suggested that I to do the latter.” – Joey Hart, Intern

 

“Ain’t No Problem” – Missi Burris, Art Director

 

“I was having a teenage moment back in high school (probably about an A- on a test) and I asked my dad how he handles life’s ups and downs. He told me without hesitation, “Easy, just be a shark.” Immediately after my initial thoughts of “okay my dad is officially losing it” and I’d rather be a mermaid, he explained, “Every shark has a fin on its back to keep itself stable and persist forward no matter what waves they are navigating—and you have the power inside to do just the same.” – Angela Delbrocco, Account Manager

 

“No matter if my dad is talking to my siblings and I or the players on his teams, he has always said, “Good things happen to good people.” – Tim Bates, Account Coordinator

What’s the best advice your dad ever gave you? Tag @murphyepson and share the wisdom. While you’re here, take time to get to know a little more about our team and the work we do. Or, “like” us on Facebook to stay in touch!

Join #teamME in welcoming back last summer’s intern, Tim as an account coordinator!

Welcome to #teamME (again!). Tell us a little about yourself.

What’s up everybody – I’m back! As you may already know, I was so fortunate to have spent last summer interning here at MurphyEpson as a professional sponge and taking in as much as I could. Then when August came around, I took my talents back down to southeastern Ohio for my senior year at Wittenberg University. On campus, you could find me busy involved in many organizations or on the ballfield as a first basemen and two-year captain of our varsity baseball squad. In May, I received my Bachelor of Arts in Communication with a Business Leadership track.  During my job search, I couldn’t help but think about all that I had learned here, so I contacted Marie and guess what, MURPHYEPSON… I’M COMING HOME! (Shout out LeBron’s announcement). These days I’m filling my time exploring unknown parts of the city I grew up in with old friends and new. Most of my enjoyment in life comes through writing, sports, social media trends, coaching and teaching, family, friends, food, fashion and really, really good coffee.

 

OK, now it’s time for some rapid fire.

 

If you could pick up a new skill in an instant what would it be?

My skill would be to know every lyric to every song ever created. I’ve thought a lot about this while in the car with others or whenever I’m out with friends. Nothing is more embarrassing than when a really popular song comes on and everyone knows the words, but you’re stuck there mouthing the wrong lyrics.

 

What’s the strangest talent you have?

This is a blessing and a curse, but I am an exceptional whistler. Name a song and I’m pretty spot on with my rendition. I practice a lot and my family members and friends who have lived with me can get a little annoyed which gets me in trouble. At the end of the day, it’s a nice trick to pull out of the bag.

 

Who’s someone you really admire?

Recently, I really admire Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Not only because of his ability to stretch the floor, snag clutch boards, knock down big threes but because of his courage to speak up and create awareness for mental health. I think it takes a strong individual to embrace and add avenues to further the conversation.

 

What’s something you want to do in the next year that you’ve never done before?

I feel like this is pretty typical for recent college grads but I want and expect to travel outside of the country. After talking with a few of #teamME’s world travelers, I’ve decided that I want to go to Europe and do a major cities tour and then when I’m a little older, hit the best tropical beaches.

 

At which store would you like to max-out your credit card?

I’m a huge shoe guy. Right now I own close to sixty pairs of all different types of styles. My answer would be Journey’s because you can purchase just about any kind of shoe in their B&M stores as well as online.

 

Choose a movie title for the story of your life.

Emperor’s New Groove because I’m entering a new stage in my life right now and to be honest, it’s feeling pretty groovy!

 

What are you reading right now?

“Make Your Bed” by Retired U.S. Naval Admiral, William H. McRaven. The book is based on the graduation speech McRaven gave at the University of Texas that has over 10 million views on YouTube.

 

What is the nerdiest thing you do in your spare time?

Most people that play sports videogames like to play against each other for fun. Not me. I set up franchises of my own, act as the general manager, and play against the computer. Things get pretty serious.

 

Phew. What a doozy. Catch your breath and tell us what you do at MurphyEpson.

Here at ME, I’m working as an account coordinator where I’ll be collaborating with our account managers and art directors on various projects and community managing our agency’s social media platforms, amongst other things. I’m happy to be back and excited to get to work!

 

MurphyEpson has cultivated quite the culture of philanthropy. What’s a charity you wish more people knew about?

One of the freshman baseball players on my team at Wittenberg this past year, Jack Hollinshead, created a non-profit organization called, My Inner Warrior. The mission of the charity is to provide physical fitness opportunities and sports equipment for children living in low-socioeconomic areas around the state of Ohio. Jack has multiple team sponsors (Wittenberg University, Baldwin Wallace University, and various high schools) which work to obtain donations. All donations go to events and equipment which the youth can use for as long as they are participants in the organization.

 

What’s the coolest thing you’re working on right now?

Besides this blog post, the coolest thing I’m working on right now are social media posts for our agency and for a client.

 

What’s the best advice you’ve ever heard?

My parents have always told me to be work as hard as I can to always be a good person because good things happen to good people. It’s pretty simple but simple and deep beats abstract and shallow.

 

Awesome. To learn more about Tim, connect with him on LinkedIn and check out his last blog post!

#teamME gained some additional wittiness around the office. Meet our summer intern, Mitch!

Welcome to #teamME! Tell us a little about yourself.

Hi! I’m going into my senior year at the University of Cincinnati where I have dual majors in Political Science and Economics. I plan to go on to graduate school to study public policy, and eventually I want to work to create change for causes I care about. I love music (besides listening, I play the drums), and I love to laugh and tend to see humor in almost anything. Some of my favorite times are watching stand-up specials with my girlfriend or waiting until way too late at night to start an eight-hour game of Risk with my friends.

 

OK, now it’s time for some rapid fire.

 

If you could have a cup of coffee with anyone, who would it be? Why is it rapid fire? This is the toughest question … Kofi Annan? The Dalai Lama? Pope Francis? I feel the need to pick someone with profound ideas and experiences. Okay, Kofi Annan – final answer. I would hope to learn something from his commitment to peace and his distinguished career in diplomacy and international governance.

 

What’s your spirit animal? I love every animal.  With that said, I think I’m pretty similar to a giraffe in that I’m sort of lanky and awkward and I exclusively eat leaves (just kidding, but I am a vegetarian).

 

What was your first email address? (Don’t be shy.) mji1108@yahoo.com – not too bad, right?  The only reason I changed it was the thousands of spam messages per day.

 

What was your first job? My first real job was here at MurphyEpson, where I went around to events in Columbus wearing a shirt that said, “Pick Up Poop.” And yet here I am at ME again…

 

What’s the next country you want to travel to? I would love to visit a Spanish-speaking country (maybe Costa Rica?). I have five years of Spanish language coursework under my belt, but I’ve never used it in the real world.

 

If you were a Crayola crayon, what would your name be? Robin’s Egg Blue?  That’s pretty close to my favorite color and I like that it’s oddly specific.

 

Where did you go to college? I go to the University of Cincinnati. Last year my younger brother chose to go to Ohio State, so now I’m the only one in my family to go to college somewhere else. But who knows? There’s always grad school.

 

Phew. What a doozy. Catch your breath and tell us what you do at MurphyEpson.

I complete duties as assigned. I hope to get a feel for a little bit of everything that goes on at ME, with a focus on learning about reconciling the competing interests of various groups.  That’s what good policymaking is all about, and it’s what I hope to do in my career.

 

What do you do outside of work?

At school, I volunteer at a dog shelter and a tutoring program, and I’m the vice president of membership for my service fraternity. Now that I’m home, I spend a good chunk of my free time eating and exercising. To relax, I love to be creative – either playing music, making things, or working on random projects. I also prioritize time with my family and friends.

 

MurphyEpson has cultivated quite the culture of philanthropy. What’s your favorite way to give back to the community?

So far, my favorite volunteer work has to be the time I spend at the animal shelter. The staff members are selfless, and they work hard every week for free. The dogs I meet have nothing but love to give, and I think we could all do well to learn from them in that regard.

 

You’ve got one day in Columbus. What do you do?

Spend the morning at the zoo, being careful not to miss the red panda or the penguins, or any newborn baby animals that might be around. Lunch in Historic Dublin (I can’t leave out the hometown). Next, a tour of thrift stores and record shops downtown to see if there are any good finds. Dinner, coffee, and ice cream in the Short North. If there’s time, live music or stand-up in the evening. If someone good is playing Nationwide or one of the major theaters, fantastic. If it’s a local band in a diner nearby, that’s great too.

 

Give us a note you’d like to end on.

“Everybody can be great, because anybody can serve.”

-Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

Awesome! To learn more about Mitch, connect with him on LinkedIn!

Meet Our Homerun-Hitting Summer Intern, Tim!

Welcome to #teamME! Tell us a little about yourself.

What’s up! I am from Westerville, Ohio and am about to embark on my senior year at Wittenberg University as a Communication major with a minor in Psychology. I love sports, especially baseball. At Wittenberg, I am a two-year captain of the baseball team and have been the starting first basemen since my freshman year. Other than sports, I like to spend my time with friends and family taking trips, eating at good restaurants and visiting cool places around Columbus that usually end up highlighted on my social media.

 

OK, now it’s time for some rapid fire. 

If you could have a cup of coffee with anyone, who would it be? Larry Page and Sergey Brin – I feel like they could throw some great advice my way.

What’s your spirit animal? A Bear – They’re big and powerful, but more so because I’ve always been envious of their hibernation!

What was your first email address? (Don’t be shy.) timtim10x32@aol.com; I still have junk mail sent to it…

What was your first job? I did pool maintenance for Annehurst Pool of Westerville. Nothing like the smell of chlorine to wake you up in the morning!

What’s the next country you want to travel to? China – to explore their culture.

If you were a Crayola crayon, what would your name be? I would have to go with Mango Tango because I like to have a good time.

Where do you go to college? I attend Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio. Tiger Up! I’m a huge OSU fan as well.

 

Phew. What a doozy. Catch your breath and tell us what you do at MurphyEpson.
I try to get involved in a little bit of everything. From sitting in on brand positioning meetings for specific accounts to data entry for metrics, I’m trying to experience the whole gamut of the company all while being a help to anyone who needs it!

 

What do you do outside of work?
Before anything else, I try to spend as much time as I can hanging out and going fun places with my friends and family. Whether that’s sitting on the back porch having a good conversation to going to a game or concert, I try to fill my time with enjoyment. I’m also really big on trying new restaurants (no preference on types of food, I like everything). Other than that, I play baseball for a college summer league here in Central Ohio.

 

You’ve got one day in Columbus. What do you do?
Breakfast at Jack and Benny’s with a couple friends is a must to start the day. Then we would take our talents to Goodale Park for a couple games of whiffle ball. After playing for a while, we would snag some tacos at Balboa on Grandview Ave. Then, before dinner, we would run over to Sole Classics for some new kicks and then end the night with a Dime-a-Dog night dinner at Huntington Park for some Clippers baseball action.

 

What’s one piece of advice you would give to an agency newcomer?
Be open to take on tasks that you may be unfamiliar with and ask a ton of questions; there isn’t anyone here that doesn’t want to help out and you can learn something from everyone!

 

Give us a note you’d like to end on.
“You’re never wrong to do the right thing.” – Mark Twain

 

That’s all for now! To learn more about #teamME, click here.

How-to Communicate with a Graphic Designer for Top Notch Results

Hiring a graphic designer to help with your brand’s marketing needs can be a daunting task to someone who struggles with articulating creative concepts. You may have ideas swirling around in your head but find it difficult to deliver it in a way a designer can understand (and vice versa). Over the span of 15 years, I’ve learned that building a relationship with a client from day one and keeping the communication as precise as possible will result in both parties being happy with the results. Some preparation ahead of time will not only help the designer see your marketing needs more clearly, but it will also help with the bottom line.

Define the Project

Before the meeting, knowing what materials you’ll need is key. Are the pieces digital or in print? Is it a logo, a brochure or a website? Do you already have a brand established? Are you looking for a re-brand or a refresh? (Here’s how to know the difference.) In any case, bringing examples or documents that support your vision can help the designer bring forth a product you’ll love.

Fill Us In

At the first meeting, give an overview of what your company is about. Key messaging or a mission statement is also a helpful way to direct a designer’s understanding of the business. Be as specific as possible, including who your target audience is. Discuss some ideas about what the project is or a rough idea of what you would like it to be. Be open to a brainstorming session that will allow for creativity to flow. To avoid any confusion later, it’s a great idea to discuss all the logistics of the project from start to finish. This would include concepts, drafts, editing, deadlines and production.

Get the Ball Rolling

If you need inspiration, here are a few ideas that clients have brought to our meetings to open up the conversation:

  1. Pinterest board for inspiration
  2. Website pages you admire
  3. Key words or phrases of the look or feel you’re going for
  4. Paint swatches from a hardware store of color palettes you enjoy
  5. Sketches on paper/napkins
  6. Logos from other companies and why you like them
  7. Documents with your company’s messaging and mission
  8. Photos of your company’s office and environment

 

Next time you are meeting with a graphic designer, hopefully these tips and advice will open a creative portal that will make it an easier experience for you and the design team. For more on working with creatives, check out our write-up on 3 Tips for Working with Creatives.

 

It’s Greek to Me – Adventures in Athens and Beyond

It was so exciting to set off for the land of gods, goddesses and blue domed churches with white-washed walls. Finally! I was scheduled to see Greece in July of 2015 but the news stories about the bank closures resulted in the tour being canceled.

I decided I was going in 2016 no matter what. So I stashed lots of euros in my shoes and off I went in late September. Sans tour.

Turns out, the media gave Greece a bum rap last year. Every Greek business owner I spoke with said 2015 was their best year ever for tourism profits despite the summer banking crisis.

And 2016 looked to be doing pretty well, too. It was packed everywhere we went. We ran into a couple from Cape Town who said they’d been in June and were back again because they liked it so much. Same for another couple from Yorkshire Dales in England. We were the newbies among so many repeat visitors. They had lots of good tips, though, that you couldn’t get from any old guidebook.

The Parthenon was my favorite ancient site on the mainland with the Oracle of Delphi coming in at a close second. I took Greco-Roman history and love mythology so it was a goosebump-inducing time when I saw where Plato and Socrates stood and orated.

But now I know what “it’s Greek to me” really means. Trying to find your way around a strange city is hard but trying to do it in a language that doesn’t even have the same letters is even tougher. In all fairness, most signage was in English as well as Greek but we still couldn’t read or say any of it… remotely. My brain and tongue stuttered so hard on the Greek symbols and syllables that by the time I looked at the English it was too late… I was already totally befuddled.

Being resourceful, MacGyverish-type travelers, we took cell phone pictures of where we wanted to go and showed it to locals who’d direct us when to get off the plane, bus, cab or ferry. I think the only thing we didn’t ride were the donkeys in Santorini!

We also noticed lots of graffiti on all of the buildings in Athens. When I asked the locals what it meant, they said they didn’t know as they didn’t understand it.

Having spent my entire career as a writer, it reminds me again of how important clear and concise communication is. When I find myself using esoteric verbiage in something just to un-bore myself, I remember: what’s the point if no one gets it?

But I digress. Back to Greece and its islands.

 

Best Experience
Drinking wine and seeing the Parthenon lit up at night from the top of Lykavittos Hill.

 

Worst Experience
Getting seasick on the fast ferry to Mykonos. The entire boatful of 200 people got sick! It was like a bad movie.

 

Best Myth Justification for Stupid Manmade Law
Athena (goddess of wisdom) and Poseidon (god of the sea) fought over patronage of the city of Athens. The city said whoever gave them the best gift would get naming rights. Poseidon gave them a spring of salt water. Since they couldn’t drink the water, Athena won because her gift of an olive tree provided not only food, but also wood to build boats and houses. Legend has it that most of the women voted for Athena which ticked Poseidon off. He told the men in the city from there on out that women were forbidden to vote. Ironically that next week we may see the first woman U.S. president. Take that, Poseidon!

 

Biggest Letdown
We visited Knossos – the palace of King Minos and home of the mystical minotaur – but no labyrinth! The guide said the palace had over 500 rooms so that would explain why people were always getting lost.

 

Quick Observations
Sadly, Greek wine is not fine.

Greek cheese, however, is great. And so much of it: Metsovone, kopanisti, kefalotyri, saganaki, kefalograviera, katiki domokou, graviera and the list goes on.

Once people heard us speak and realized we were Americans, they started talking to us about our presidential election. One woman from Jerusalem was very well informed. When we remarked on it she said, “We can’t afford not to pay attention to politics where I’m from.” Made me blush to think she probably knew more than I did about the issues.

Despite not-so-stellar performances from both presidential candidates and all our other problems, a well-to-do woman from Buenos Aires said to me, “I would love to live in America. You have no idea how hard it is to live in Argentina. You have it so good.”

Ah, a light at the end of the artfully-painted tunnel.

 

Amen and Efcharisto (thanks in Greek)

Cindy Byington

Cindy Byington is our dog-loving, tea-drinking, Senior Account Manager and creative veteran. If you’ve ever been to Grandview, you’ve probably crossed paths.

3 Tips for Working with Creatives When You Have an Engineering Mind

Yes, I have a relentless desire to understand how things work, troubleshoot problems and plan ahead like a chess player. But five years ago, when I decided to semi-retire from my life as a developer, I made the jump into a new role as Chief Operations Manager (VP of Operations, COO, you get the point) here at MurphyEpson. Now, I work with a team of passionate and creative thinkers who exceed our clients’ expectations every day, making our team proud and our clients even prouder.

However, as an engineer walking into a creative environment, I had a lot of knowledge to share, but also a lot to learn. We think differently. We plan differently. Yet we all have something extraordinary to bring to the table.

 

Here are my three biggest tips for working with creative minds:

  1. Get to know the visual thinkers
    Adobe InDesign is not a software that I want to start learning at this stage in my career. And it’s a good thing (for everyone involved) that I don’t have to. Our designers have a good understanding of how to utilize the latest design tools to bring campaigns, branding and so much more to life. Engineering minds default to technical, not always understandable, items and your designers can share that technological information visually to make it relatable to the public.
  2. Distilling, crafting and editing is all part of the process
    Our copywriters who specialize in digital advertising, public and media content creation work to share your most relevant and easy-to-follow content. Sometimes that means they distill your 50-slide, copy-heavy presentation into a slim 15 slides with guidance for visuals. These experts know how to craft a message and deliver it in a way that is meaningful and impactful to the desired audience. It’s important to trust their craft – and, after all, humans now have a shorter attention span than goldfish.
  3. The whole is greater than each of its parts
    Together – as #teamME – we achieve success. Do we need creative, outside-of-the-box thinkers? Of course. Do we need hyper-organized and efficient communicators? No agency could function without them. Do we need analytical, engineering-minded folks like me? We wouldn’t be MurphyEpson without us. It’s our add-on. Our bonus. Our difference-maker. Always learn about others strengths but don’t lose sight of your own. A true skill set can be modified to apply in any setting.

 

Voted “Most Likely to Give Great Dad Advice,” by #teamME, Mark Keister is MurphyEpson’s skilled COO.

For more on the thoughts of our trusted team, check out our goals for October in last week’s Wednesday Weigh-in!

 

Wednesday Weigh-In: New Month, New Musings

We’ve heard the saying before: “new year, new me.” It’s verging on cliché and has created a flurry of memes that mock it to a pulp.

Often we forget that each month, week and day bring an opportunity to start fresh to some capacity. So, #teamME took the opportunity to set one small goal for the upcoming month of fall foliage, OSU tailgating and fun-size candy bars. (Which, by the way, have you ever thought of how many fun-size candy bars one must eat before it’s no longer fun?) Without further ado, here is this week’s question:

What is one goal you would like to accomplish in the month of October?

Erin: To carve pumpkins, for the first time, with my two lil’ pumpkins. And then bake and eat all the yummy pumpkin seeds!

Marie: Get our new clients off to a strong, solid start.

Mark: Clean my desk!

Nick: I hope to create a standard project file structure for use in keeping ourselves organized.

Rachel: Discover new, innovative content ideas for social accounts and find a Halloween costume my dog will actually keep on.

Elizabeth: I would like to help the triplets make wise decisions about their college selection(s) for next year.

Stephanie: Procrastinate less.

Leah: Visit with family and friends in Circleville at the Pumpkin Show and eat as many pumpkin-flavored foods as possible.

Missi: To not eat all of the Halloween candy I bought before handing it out to the trick-or-treaters.

Colin: A goal that I’d like to accomplish this October is to rethink our organization of office supplies and how/when we order them.

Jeanna: For October, I would like to write my next day’s to-do list at 5pm each afternoon and host at least one dinner for friends – backyard bonfire included!

Angela: In October, I’d like to go to as many pumpkin patches possible, drink as much hot apple cider as I can and sign-up for a seminar aimed to advance my presentation and speaking skills.

 

Learn more about the wonderful people behind MurphyEpson or read about our Graeters-Loving, Buckeye-Cheering Planner, Nick!