Marketing Action supports Ice Bowl

The disc golf Ice Bowl held in Rocklin this weekend collected food for the Placer Food Bank and raised funds for Soroptimist International Loomis Basin. Marketing Action was a tee sponsor.

Pictured: Karen Fraser-Middleton (L) with Loomis Soroptimists at Rocklin Ice Bowl

Tips to Start a Business Services Newsletter

If you are thinking about starting a newsletter to promote your business services, consider these tips to take marketing action:

  1. Plan on producing a quarterly newsletter. This gives you some flexibility in the dates for distribution.
  2. Focus on how your clients are using your services and benefiting.
  3. Keep it short – one or two pages.
  4. Include photos and remember to take your camera to events and client meetings.
  5. Ask your clients for testimonials to include in the articles.
  6. Use a professional designer to make it eye catching.
  7. Keep a running list of story ideas.
  8. Post your newsletter on your web site.

To see an example of a business services newsletter, look at the College of the Sequoias Training and Development Summer 2012 newsletter. This California community college produced the newsletter to promote customized employer training and business services to manufacturers through the Center for Applied Competitive Technologies.

Brain & brute strength fly planes

Always on the lookout for hands-on projects that inspire innovation in design and engineering, I was intrigued by “Paper Plane Champ Watches His Record Fly, Fly Away” in the Wall Street Journal, May 18, 2012, pg. 1

According to the article, paper airplane designer John Collins collaborated with former Cal football player to win the Guinness World Record at an event in Sacramento CA. The folded paper airplane flew 226 feet 10 inches. Watch it on You Tube (Thanks to ThePaperAirplaneGuy).

This is a great example of how collaboration in California is sparking innovation. Marketing Action works with schools and colleges to promote Science, Technology, Engineering & Math careers by inspiring students with applied academics.

New Blue Goose Brochure Created

The South Placer Heritage Foundation (SPHF) that owns the Blue Goose Event Center in Loomis recently worked with Marketing Action to create a new brochure.

Lana Greenan, Board Member and Marketing Chair, SPHF said that she appreciated the quality of the new marketing piece and the process of working with Karen Fraser-Middleton at Marketing Action.

“Karen’s ability to understand our needs moved the project along quickly,” said Greenan. “Her communication skills and marketing savvy combined with follow through took us to a new level to broaden our marketing efforts. Karen can keep everyone on target and focused. She motivated me with her professionalism mixed with a great sense of humor.”

Smithtonian Graphic Design and Daryl Stinchfield Photography collaborated with Marketing Action on this project. Learn more about booking an event at

Loomis Soroptimist Presents Awards

Soroptimist International of Loomis Basin (SILB) presented community awards on Wednesday, March 23 at the Train Depot in Downtown Loomis. The club’s fundraising efforts such as the recent Tostada Bingo, held March 12, enable the club to support women and children in our community.

Violet Richardson Award

Sarah A. Dietz (16), a student at Del Oro High School, received the Violet Richardson Award that recognizes young women who make the community and world a better place through volunteer efforts. She won a cash award and selected the Senior L.I.F.E. Center of Loomis as the non-profit organization to receive the other half of the award. Dietz also volunteers at the Sacramento Crisis Nursery. “When we were there, we played with the children cooked dinner and did an activity,” said Dietz.

Women’s Opportunity Award

Ashley Day of Citrus Heights, a single mother of two children, won the Women’s Opportunity Award that aids women who must support their families and need additional training to upgrade their employability. Day attends Intercoast College with the goal of becoming an Alcohol and Drug Counselor. Instructor Donna Brint said that passion, desire and education are essential elements for a counselor. “Ashley has passion and desire and with the help of Soroptimist will gain her education,” said Brint.

Ruby Award

Amy Beazizo, R.N., BSN, OCN, won the Soroptimist Ruby Award for Women Helping Women that is given to those who improve the lives of other women or girls through their professional or personal activities. Beazizo is the Clinical Manager of the Breast Health Center at Sutter Roseville, a Not for Profit Organization that provides support and education to women and men diagnosed with breast cancer. According to Brenda Newsom, SILB Past-President, Beazizo helps women who seek emotional, intellectual and physical support as they begin their journey with Breast Cancer. “Amy meets with each woman seeking help, listens to her story and moves the woman into their program of counseling and free services,” said Newsom. “She is making a dramatic improvement in the lives of countless women who have heard the words, ‘You have breast cancer’ by moving them out of the terror zone and into the educated zone.”

Senior L.I.F.E. Center of Loomis

Fred & Acsa Hitchen received a grant to continue their work at the Senior L.I.F.E. Center of Loomis, a place where adults over 55 years of age can enjoy leisure through social and educational activities. Soroptimist International Loomis Basin helped establish the center and has supported the program since its inception.

Teacher Grants

SILB provides small grants to help fund teachers’ long-term projects that will benefit numerous classes over time.

Laurel Nichols, Second Grade Teacher at H. Clarke Powers, will use her grant for DVD Listening Center to expose children to wonderful stories and teach them phrasing, expression and accuracy.

Steve Harber and Linsey Dalben, Sixth Grade Teachers at H. Clarke Powers, received a grant to help pay for the shipping of 50-60 care boxes being sent to soldiers stationed in Afghanistan with the daughter of the school clerk.

Tiffany Senkbeil, Fourth Grade Teacher at Franklin Elementary, expects to purchase a set of 30 Island of the Blue Dolphin books for her class with the grant. The story consistently engages and interests students in reading and other cultures.

Carolynn Basque and Kathryn Leupp, First Grade Teachers at Franklin Elementary, plan to use the grant to purchase sets of leveled reading books to teach each child at his or her reading level or ability.

Christie D’Ambrosio, First Grade Teacher at Loomis Basin Charter School, intends to use her grant funds to help purchase an incubator and heat lamps to raise chicks and teach students about embryonic development.

Justin VonSpreckelsen, Second Grade Teacher at Loomis Basin Charter School, received a grant to purchase MP3 players so that students can record themselves reading and then classmates can listen to the recording as they read to improve fluency, compression and expression.

Soroptimist ( is an international volunteer service organization for business and professional women who work to improve the lives of women and girls, in local communities and throughout the world. Soroptimist International of Loomis Basin is a 501(c)(3) organization.

The club supports Loomis Women’s Shelter, Loomis LIFE center, Relay for Life, and other community projects.

To learn more Soroptimist International of Loomis Basin, contact Rhonda Morillas, president, 916-652-5276. Meetings are held weekly on Wednesdays at 8 AM (first Wednesday excepted).

Your customers can tip the marketing balance in your favor

One of my suppliers in Roseville, CA recently asked me to speak with prospects who were considering using the firm’s services. Marketing Action has been working with the company for years, as well as other similar firms, and felt I could give an objective view.

When I’m considering working with a new business partner in the Sacramento region for printing, promotional items, web site design and other marketing services, I like to check references so I was more than willing to “give back” by sharing my experiences.

What did they ask?

  • How long I’d worked with the company
  • What type of marketing projects we’d partnered on
  • Was I satisfied with the quality of work
  • What it was like to work with the project team
  • What one thing could be improved
  • Would I recommend them to others

Happily, the company was successful in securing the new account. Evidently talking with me and other satisfied clients sealed the deal after the firm had met all the other qualifications.

If you ask customers to share their experience with prospects, don’t forget to say thanks. I was surprised and delighted to not only get thanks but a restaurant gift certificate as well. And, remember that keeping your existing customers happy could be your best marketing tool. Your satisfied customers may be your best sales force.

Marketing action plan for tradeshows

If you are planning to particpate in a tradeshow, start your marketing planning by asking yourself these questions:

  • Date of event
  • Audience – # people, who they are
  • Atmosphere of this conference and typical displays
  • Purpose of attending
  • Expected outcome
  • What has and has not worked when you attended this or similiar events in the past?
  • If you are updating your display, are there events where you may use this same display because of a similiar audience and purpose?
  • What else will attract an audience – movie on TV, demonstrations?
  • Do you want promotional giveaways?
  • What are your plans to invite clients and prospects to stop by your booth?
  • How will you collect attendees’ contact info – from conference organizers or with a drawing at your booth?
  • What follow-up do you have planned with those who visit the tradeshow?
  • Are there opportunities to provide door prizes that are announced?
  • Can you give an educational presentation?
  • How will you prepare staff who are working the booth?
  • What coordination is required with conference group about electricity, union rules for bringing in booth, timing and set up requirements?

Are competitive hawks stealing your clients?

There was a huge hawk sitting at the end of my driveway in Loomis with a chicken at its feet. Of course, I didn’t have my camera in the car so you can barely see the bird in flight in this picture. I didn’t see it happen but I can only imagine the chicken was unsuspecting as the raptor swooped down from the sky. Are you being hunted by the competition?

In this economy, it is more important than ever to guard your customers by providing excellent service, anticipating needs and regularly checking in to identify potential problems. When you aren’t looking, other vendors are promising better service at a lower cost.

What can you do to protect yourself from competitive hawks? Take marketing action:

  • Ask your clients what one thing you could do to improve the service you provide.
  • Proactively provide new ideas and bring trends that may impact their businesses to their attention.
  • Promote your clients to your associates to help their businesses grow.
  • Express your appreciation for the trust your customers place in you.
  • Invite clients to educational forums as your guest to expand their knowledge.
  • Bring customers to professional association meetings or other networking groups.
  • Get to know your clients and provide referrals and information related to their personal interests.

Don’t let competitive hawks ruffle your feathers by attempting to steal your chickens. With solid relationships that respond to your clients’ needs, they’ll be safe to lay eggs for years to come.

Soroptimist Supports Cowpoke Fall Gathering of Cowboy Poets

With the Soroptimist International Loomis Basin, I volunteered at the Saturday dinner for the 16th Annual Cowpoke Fall Gathering, a cowboy poetry event that benefits community organizations, and celebrates western traditions and values. The Cowpoke Fall Gathering was held at the Blue Goose, a fruit shed in Loomis that was renovated by the South Placer Heritage Foundation. This year, most attendees wore pink demonstrating that they were “tough enough to wear pink” in support of breast cancer awareness. Hats off to the Braun’s who have created this wonderful cowboy poetry event that brings together the community and supports community organizations such as Soroptimist International Loomis Basin, Loomis Union School District and the South Placer Heritage Foundation.

Filming Sierra STEM Tech-Explorer story

Robert Ansell of Royce Video Production of Sacramento is working with Marketing Action in Loomis to record implementation of Sierra College National Science Foundation (NSF) grant for the Tech-Explorer project.

With the goal of preparing and encouraging students to consider Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education and careers, Sierra College is building on the success of the Tech-Explorer catapult production project. Math lessons are being integrated into the hands-on building project to test the effectiveness of applied academics – using math while making the parts and building the catapult — in increasing math skills and retention.

This is just one of many Sierra STEM projects to prepare our future workforce in the Sacramento region for highly paid, in-demand technical local jobs.