Over the course of four years and throughout the restaurant’s three- state central region, Maggie Baum helped beloved burrito joint Chipotle share their mission of “Food With Integrity” in engaging and unexpected ways. Through a consistent media relations program, Chipotle garnered coverage from major outlets such as the Minneapolis Star Tribune, WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee, and Food & Drink magazine. Key reporters were invited to exclusive food tastings and pitched timely stories such as how to “spice up the traditional tailgate party” at the beginning of baseball season. This laid the foundation for coverage of major company announcements such as Chipotle’s commitment to sourcing locally grown produce, its move to LED lighting, it’s first LEED-certified restaurant facility, and reaching the milestone of serving 100% naturally raised meats in Minnesota.To add excitement and value to Chipotle’s partnership with the Naperville Park District, Maggie B. helped coordinate the month-long “Great Burrito Hunt” to get residents into the parks and generate burrito buzz. With a year of free burritos on the line for up to 30 winners, word spread like wildfire in local newspapers and online. An ongoing tally of the number of giant faux burritos found – and clues to remaining locations – helped sustain interest throughout the month. The promotion increased traffic to the parks and the restaurant, and generated 15 print news stories, two radio interviews, and a hit on FoxNews.com.
Maggie B. helped Kohler Plumbing soak up a cascade of media interest for the DTV, a digital valve to control and customize the showering experience, with an exclusive preview in NYC. The event drew more than 80 national media, including reps from Good Housekeeping, Family Circle, Wired and The Wall Street Journal.At the same time, Kohler needed to balance its leadership role in water conservation with its luxury bath image. Maggie B. and her team helped Kohler define its positioning with a year-long blitz aimed at educating media contacts and spreading a stewardship message to consumers. The first step was an announcement regarding Kohler’s participation in the EPA’s WaterSense program, highlighting Kohler as one of the first manufacturers with multiple toilets certified as WaterSense compliant.A video package was also created and shared with news stations across the country. The footage was used proactively in areas that were facing severe draughts and immediate water shortages. In the video, Ed del Grande of the DIY Network’s Ed the Plumber shared water-saving tips for homeowners, and one of Kohler’s senior engineers discussed in detail how Kohler’s high-tech products could use less water without sacrificing performance.Finally, providing support for Kohler’s participation in trade shows – such as the International Builder’s Show and GreenBuild – helped connect with additional relevant media contacts and ultimately led to the conservation message being shared with a broader audience.
As Madison-based Gorman & Company looked to establish a stronger presence on the national scene, Maggie B. managed a multi-faceted communications effort focusing on media relations, industry awards, and speaking opportunities.Sharing challenges and successes surrounding various building and rehabilitation projects garnered a flurry of media placements in local communities. Projects that could serve as a benchmark for other cities were pitched to the national media. For example, the Gund Brewery Lofts was designed as walk-to-work housing for nearby medical center employees. The rehab of this vacant brewery, and its many sustainable elements, was showcased as an example of smart urban re-development by dozens of online media outlets including Yahoo!News and Forbes.com. Other key projects were featured in national trades such as Developer and Multi-Housing News.An aggressive awards program included Gorman & Company being named Developer of the Year by Wisconsin Builder; Milwaukee’s Park East Enterprise Lofts was recognized nationally as an Affordable Housing Finance Reader’s Choice; and The Gund Brewery Lofts earned a Wisconsin Business Friend of the Environment award. Finally, Maggie B. secured a national speaking engagement for Gary Gorman, the firm’s president, with the American Planning Association, a group identified as Gorman’s prime target audience.
A group of teachers, administrators and interested community members had worked hard to secure a planning grant for an innovative new public charter school to take the place of the former Middleton Alternative Senior High (MASH) in the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District. The new school was founded on three pillars as a place-based, project-based, democratic school.To clearly articulate this new model of education and generate interest among potential students, parents, and community members, the newly named Clark Street Community School utilized the services of Maggie B. Communications to spearhead the student recruitment and general awareness initiative for its inaugural school year.The task of developing a brand identity and message platform for the new school had to address the needs of many different stakeholders such as the governance board, the teaching staff, and the planning committee. In addition, there were several target audiences to consider, each with different levels of awareness and understanding. And, because the school is public, close attention needed to be paid to all school district needs and requirements.Maggie B. served as the leader to bring all the communications components of this effort together including establishing a design team and providing direction and oversight to that team; pitching stories to key local media and providing media training to spokespeople; and meeting with various stakeholders to develop and refine a series of key messages.