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The News Chair

Looking Back, Moving Forward

Ever since I started working at Coles Marketing — almost a decade ago (yikes!) — my coworker, Chris Mercier, has been a wonderful mentor and friend.

dsc_0098And at the end of this month, she’s retiring. I can’t imagine the workplace without her, so I thought a spotlight on her for this blog seemed quite fitting.

Q&A with Chris Mercier (it rhymes!)

Q: How did you get started with Coles? Why have you stayed so many years?

A: I joined the company when it was known as Coles & Morrison. I met Candy Morrison first through a non-profit. Working part-time at the non-profit was my first job going back to work after staying home with my two children. In 1998, Candy introduced me to Barb, and I joined the company.

d20_1669Q: Describe Coles Marketing in one word.

A: Family

Q: How has the PR/marketing/communications industry changed over the years?

A: When I first joined the company, six of us shared one email account. We sent news releases through the mail (snail mail). Social media wasn’t even on the horizon. Advertising was limited to print or broadcast. Clients have many more opportunities today to tell their stories.

img_2037Q: What qualities do you think are required of a leader for success?

A: I think a leadership role requires you to think on your feet. Develop honest relationships. Listen to your client to formulate a strategy to help them accomplish their goals. I enjoy the critical thinking it takes to come up with workable strategies for each challenge.

Q: What kind of impression or impact do you hope to leave on Coles Marketing and its employees?

A: I hope people remember that I was a hard worker with a sense of humor.

Q: Offer a piece of advice for up-and-coming PR and marketing executives.

A: My advice to future execs is to be a supportive and contributing member to the team. Always stay one step ahead by staying organized. Don’t be afraid to take on more responsibility, and embrace change.

mercier_5inQ: What’s ahead for you?

A: My husband and I look forward to spending more time in Scottsdale with our daughter, two grandchildren, Jim’s mom and dad and extended family of close to 50. We will also be closer to our son in Portland and hope to travel the western U.S. in the next few years.


Chris, we will miss you. You can never be replaced, and we will always remember you as a hard worker with a sense of humor … and so much more!


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Unlock Your Business Potential


Are you looking for the keys to kick-starting your business or organization growth this year? The Coles team is made up of communications experts with backgrounds in everything from digital marketing and media relations to Web design and videography.


We want you and your business to have a successful year! Let us help you get started with a marketing tip from each team member.


Barbara Coles

Barbara Coles

Barbara Coles, President – Website Lifespan

A website’s lifespan is typically three to four years. If your website exceeds that time without a major update or redesign, technology is likely to have passed you by, and you risk losing valuable consumers. At Coles Marketing, we use the latest technology and expert design to create websites that generate clicks, calls and leads.




Brian Coles

Brian Coles

Brian Coles, VP Marketing – Integrated Messaging

The rule of three is now the rule of nine. During our waking hours, we are saturated with marketing messages. Use integrated marketing with consistent messages to reach your audience as many times as possible, where they congregate, to make your brand stand out.




Chris Mercier

Chris Mercier

Chris Mercier, VP Public Relations – Company Reflection and Goals

Reflect with your team on the year’s communication efforts — what worked and what didn’t. Then talk about company goals you want to accomplish in the New Year with a wish list of how to accomplish each top goal. Don’t be afraid to plan an event to generate some good buzz. And don’t forget internal public relations. Often the enthusiasm of your staff can be the difference between a good year and a great year!



Tim Coulon

Tim Coulon

Tim Coulon, VP Creative – Images and Copyright Infringement

Don’t assume you can copy images and graphics straight from the Web for articles or graphic projects. Just because an image is on the Internet doesn’t mean it’s free to use. Make sure you own the copyright for images before they are used for personal or commercial use. Copyright infringement is illegal and carries with it possible significant consequences.



Kevin Moore

Kevin Moore

Kevin Moore, Multimedia Designer – Responsive Email Campaigns

With the usage and popularity of mobile devices continuing to increase, businesses should make sure to offer responsive email campaigns. Responsive campaigns provide the optimal viewing experience across various platforms, whether a desktop or a variety of mobile devices. Here are a few selections to explore:


Tiffany Whisner

Tiffany Whisner

Tiffany Whisner, Account Manager/Social Media Strategist – Social Media Education

Focus on expanding your social media education, and continue to learn more each day. Just as the social media world is always evolving — companies need to evolve their social media strategies and tactics. Stay consistent with posting to your social media platforms, and make sure to add videos and images to your posts. Be open-minded, and pay attention to new social media tips and tricks.



Shawn Sorrells

Shawn Sorrells

Shawn Sorrells, Videographer/Account Manager – 4K Resolution of Video

Marketers and consumers need to understand what 4K resolution is — because the transition from HD to 4K is starting to happen in the video industry. Just like the switch from standard to HD, 4K is the next level of digital television and video. With four times the number of pixels, 4K video has better colors, better contrast and a sharper resolution. Check out this chart for a great visual: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4K_resolution.



Teresa Tanner

Teresa Tanner

Teresa Tanner, Financial Manager/Event Planner – Plan Events Now

Schedule your company and client events now. You don’t want to wait until the last minute to book a location or venue for a certain date or time. It’s best to start planning as soon as you can! Do you need to reserve a rental or book some live entertainment? Many special events involve complex logistics, and early planning can lessen your stress.




Christopher Lloyd

Christopher Lloyd

Christopher Lloyd, Senior Copywriter/Editor – Importance of Micro Content

Don’t ignore the importance of “micro content.” That’s the online display copy that shows up next to the teaser of an online article. Research shows Web users spend less than 10 seconds deciding whether or not to click on a link. That means people aren’t going to read your content if the teaser isn’t enough of a tease! Make sure your micro content is on-target, snappy and gives an accurate gist of what you’re writing about.



Lisa Deremiah

Lisa Deremiah

Lisa Deremiah, Business Development – Market Your Business

Make sure your business stays current in marketing itself. If your website is old, let’s get it up to date. It needs to be responsive on all viewing platforms — the pinching and pulling of text on your mobile device when viewing a site designed for your desktop is out of style. Keep your company information easy to access, and your customers will be appreciative. Coles Marketing is here to help with this and any other marketing needs!


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Oh, The Places You’ll Advertise!


Advertising tells the world about your brand or product through various forms of paid media. Ads are placed where advertisers think they will reach the largest, most relevant audience.


Tiffany Whisner

Tiffany Whisner

Once upon a time that was in TV and radio commercials, print ads and billboards. Now there’s Google, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and many others also trying to grasp their piece of the advertising pie.


“Brands are looking for new places to advertise because people are looking for new ways to communicate,” said Brian Coles, VP marketing at Coles Marketing.


Google goes from the wrist to the wall

AppleInsider has a sneak peek into the places where Google says it might advertise, including thermostats, glasses, watches and car dashboards.


From its filing with the SEC, Google said, “Our expectation is that users will be using our services and viewing our ads on an increasingly wide diversity of devices in the future, and thus our advertising systems are becoming increasingly device-agnostic.”


As noted in the AppleInsider article by Neil Hughes, “The mention of glasses and watches is no surprise, as Google is betting heavily on the future of wearable devices, through both its Google Glass project, as well as its forthcoming Android Wear platform.”


And have you seen Google’s self-driving car? In late May, Google presented a new prototype of their driverless car with no steering wheel or pedals. So it would make sense to advertise on those car dashboards!


Promoted pins and video ads roll out

But Facebook won’t be outdone when it comes to advertising. The social media giant began selling video ads in the U.S. in March. And now it’s expanding this new service to seven other countries, according to Reuters.


In his article, Alexei Oreskovic said these video ads are one of Facebook’s most closely-watched new advertising products. It could help Facebook gobble up an even bigger slice of brand advertising budgets.


“Advertising in general is about hitting the right person at the right time, and social media advertising has this down pat,” Coles said.


Here’s a pinteresting idea! Pinterest has been experimenting with Promoted Pins, ads featuring placements from select retailers and other businesses. Now the company is doing a paid test of Promoted Pins.


“The launch of paid ads is a notable milestone for Pinterest,” said Sarah Perez in her TechCrunch article. A small number of brands are participating to begin with, including ABC Family, GAP, Kraft and Target, among others.


You’re putting that magazine ad where?

It’s not a big deal to see a Verizon Wireless ad in Time magazine. But what if that ad is on the cover?


For the most part, magazine cover advertising has been avoided because it violates “widely-observed guidelines from the American Society of Magazine Editors … which are meant to emphasize and protect editorial independence from marketers,” said Michael Sebastian in his AdAge article.


Guess the need for new revenue is becoming more important. Or maybe it’s just the desire to “be entrepreneurial,” said Time Inc.’s Chief Content Officer Norman Pearlstine.


“Traditional media outlets like magazines need to get creative in order to stay competitive with new advertising,” Coles said.


There’s no such thing as “free”

Coles has the following thoughts when it comes to the future of advertising:

  • The world will continue to move in the mobile direction, and messaging will need to be more concise and direct.
  • The days of picking one advertising medium to get your message across are gone.
  • As consumers, we need to get used to the idea that there is no such thing as “free” digital content. One way or another, consumers will have to pay.


Get more advertising advice from Brian Coles and the Coles Marketing team today!


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