The Art and Science of Marketing, Possibly According to an Actual Superhero

By: Julie Kirchner


If Spandex-clad, masked vigilantes just sprang to mind, you’re not alone. But do modern-day superheroes actually exist?

We contend that they do. Because we’ve met one.

Enter this trailblazer in the marketing arena. She is someone Powerhouse has been privileged to partner with over the last few years, and after witnessing her skills and mindset at work, we put Batman on warning.

“If I could be a superhero, I’d love to be Connector Woman. I love bringing interesting people together to see what magic we can create,” says Rissa Reddan, Marketing Leader for Demand Generation at Equifax. There couldn’t possibly be a more exquisite interpretation for marketing than “bringing interesting people together.”

Reddan recently stepped into her new role as Demand Generation Leader for the U.S. Information Services business at Equifax, which is a one-billion-dollar-plus business. “My goal is to communicate how we help customers solve for growing business challenges,” Reddan says. For the past two years, she served as Senior Vice President of Marketing for the Commercial Business at Equifax, and prior to that, Senior Vice President of Marketing for PayNet until its acquisition by Equifax in 2019.

Reddan says, “I am thrilled to be a part of Equifax’s transformation. At Equifax, our goal is to help small businesses access capital. We know that when the small business economy thrives, so, too, the U.S. economy.”

And she’s right. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy, small businesses account for 99.9% of businesses in the United States and provide nearly half of all jobs in its private workforce. (more…)

2021-07-02T14:53:22+00:00July 1st, 2021|

Did You Know?

Roughly 80% of small businesses are utilizing social media, however only 39% of them update their sites “as needed,” according to research published in The Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness. Yet how do most of us search for a business when we need a new or new-to-us product? We open Google and “let [our] fingers do the walking,” as the old Yellow Pages commercials used to say.

Now, more than ever, we are relying on our computers, tablets, and smartphones to help us shop, conduct business, and basically stay connected in both our personal and business lives. Our external communications are key to helping us promote our businesses, shape perception, gain more sales, and (bottom line) grow our businesses.

Various external communication tools exist such as websites, blogs, live events and conferences, email and newsletters, press releases, and the ever-present social media. Not only are these critical to promoting our brands, but they are also crucial in helping us build loyal customer bases and generate new leads.

If you feel lost on how to make the most of your external communications, Powerhouse Planning can help. We offer business development services that can help you bring your business to the next level. Contact us today for details.

2021-07-01T14:34:53+00:00July 1st, 2021|

3 Tips to Streamline External Communications

By: Meghan Traynor

Let’s face it—growing a business isn’t easy. You may have heard that effective communication is key for your business to thrive. With many businesses working remotely these days, streamlining your company’s external communications strategy is more important than ever.

So how can you make the most out of your external communications strategy, whether you are using social media, email newsletters, blogs, or a combination to connect with your audience? We’re glad you asked.

  1. Create content that relates to your brand. A good communications strategy should build brand awareness. To save yourself time in the long run and give yourself the opportunity to create valuable content, take out your calendar and brainstorm themes and holidays that relate to your brand. Put all these ideas into a strategic communications plan to refer to when you’re creating content. Most importantly, make sure your content always ties into your company’s brand.
  2. Be relatable and authentic. Get to know your audience. Review analytics to determine what content gets the most engagement. Find out what your customers value. Use these as tools when creating your companies’ external communications. Your audience wants to see the authenticity of your company, and what better way to get your brand out there than by being uniquely you in all you do?
  3. Marketing collateral. When designing graphics and marketing collateral, you want your audience to be able to understand clearly what your company is all about. What is your company’s message? If a stranger looked at your content, would he or she know what your company is all about? A great resource for this is Donald Miller’s book Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen. The Powerhouse team found tremendous value in this read during a recent virtual book club.


2021-07-01T23:43:51+00:00July 1st, 2021|

Marketing or Messaging? Tips for Communicating as a Business with the Community

By: Meredith Flory

Not every piece of external communications from your company will be targeted advertising to gain new clients. External communication also includes messaging regarding what your company does, your values, and your engagement with the community that will tell the general public who you are. Not just potential clients, but current clients, business partners, and current or future employees. Consider how your company balances sales pitches with other forms of engagement. How do you show leadership in the community in addition to a solid product – through service, employment opportunities, civic engagement? Communicate these practices in your newsletters, website, and social media.

Plan for mistakes. Inevitably, your company will make a misstep in communication: an advertisement that falls flat, a poorly handled complaint, or a social faux pas when dealing with current issues. If you prepare ahead of time for how you will handle an internal review, public statement, and commitment to changing behavior, then when a mistake happens, your team can feel more confident that you can approach the situation fairly, calmly, and appropriately. Writing a crisis communications plan that makes the chain of communication, responsibility, and review process clear and available can help employees at all levels navigate their roles in guiding the company back to sure footing.  (more…)

2021-07-01T23:45:27+00:00July 1st, 2021|


Client Profile: Coastal Peach Interiors

Powerhouse Services Provided: Website Development and Design

“Everyone I interacted with at Powerhouse was knowledgeable and professional. They are all on top of their game and provide superior services. The website they designed for me was well above my expectations! I will absolutely be using them again in the future for more of my business needs. Powerhouse is an impressive company that goes above and beyond in professionalism and performance. Their charitable giving is also inspirational and encouraging!”

– Beth Soto, President, Coastal Peach Interiors


2021-07-01T14:39:18+00:00July 1st, 2021|

Business Resources

External communications can cover a wide variety of audiences and mediums, all of which are important for you to understand and know how to use effectively.

For a fairly comprehensive look at external communications essentials and tips on using them when starting or running a business, check out Santa Clara University’s website for their MyOwnBusiness Institute.

If you need resources or help discovering how to best communicate with your customers, sponsors, boards, etc., Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) may have just what you’re looking for. This site covers everything you might need to know about communicating during COVID-19 and directly after. In addition, you can gain the basics on crisis communication techniques.

As always, Powerhouse has plenty of resources available to help you with both traditional and outside-the-box tips on how to improve external communications.

Overwhelmed or unsure of where to start? Powerhouse can help with everything from crafting press releases, to setting up websites and engaging effectively on social media, to composing annual reports to keep investors and others in the know and excited about your business. Contact us today to see how our business development services can boost your external communications—and your business.

 Have you? Have you checked out Powerhouse online recently? Not only have we added a new Case Studies page on our website, but we are ever-present on social media as well. Click the “Follow,” “Like,” or “Subscribe” button and connect with our team on Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

2021-07-01T14:35:13+00:00July 1st, 2021|

Being Kind, Even in Trying Times

By: Randi Cairns

These have been isolating times as a global pandemic has required that we put boundaries between ourselves and others. Our homes have become our offices and our children’s schools, and our computers have been the only real connection to the outside world for many of us. And while that’s slowly changing, KindWorks has been there all along, providing tangible assistance and reminding us that even when we’re on our own, we’re not alone.

KindWorks is an award-winning Maryland nonprofit organization that for 13 years has been inspiring action for a kinder world. They do this by making it easy and fun for people to volunteer in a range of projects. Some of their difference-making opportunities have included making soup to share with those in need; refurbishing and donating computers to promote digital inclusion; setting up apartments for refugee families; cooking and serving dinners at area shelters; preparing meals with recovered foods for homeless men and women; and mentoring at the jail. (more…)

2021-07-01T14:35:19+00:00July 1st, 2021|


Merging Career and Health: Bringing a Healthy Balance to Work and Medicine

By: Heatherlynn Akins

Here at Powerhouse Planning, we are all about being healthy. If you’ve been following us or reading PowerTips for a while now, you know we’re big on finding a healthy work/life balance. For 2021, we’re taking it even further by challenging all of us to identify the unhealthy practices in our lives and make steps toward changing and improving them. That’s why we’re thrilled to feature HelloHealth founder Dr. Carmen Mohan this quarter.

Dr. Mohan spent three years as a clinical fellow at Harvard Medical School before joining the faculty at Emory University Department of Medicine. While at Emory, she started a priority access health clinic for employees and staff of Grady Memorial Hospital, a level-one trauma center in Atlanta, Georgia. Given that she was treating mostly mission-driven, dedicated personnel who were committed to serving Atlanta’s underserved populations, Mohan quickly realized that she was leveraging her skills as a healer and not just a physician. She could address healthy living practices and offer consultations that helped her patients stay not just healthy, but well.

During her residency and first years as a doctor, Mohan started her family and eventually shifted her professional focus to becoming a hospitalist. It was while she worked as a hospitalist that she truly came to appreciate the fact that hard-working, career-driven professionals were being admitted to the hospital with severe issues when a bit of preventative medicine could have eliminated them. She recalls a particular woman who came in and died of a heart attack in the emergency room while she tried to save her: “She was the kind of woman who would have kept my young children from crossing the street when cars were coming by, and I felt the undeniable feeling that I could have saved her if I had been her doctor five years before the night we met.” That feeling stayed with Mohan and opened her eyes to just how many patients, particularly professional women, were suffering from preventable medical issues. She searched for months for a job that would allow her to bring her healing talents together with her medical skills to treat patients holistically. A chance meeting with five like-minded women in the medical field prompted her to launch a concierge medical practice “focused on women in leadership.” With those five women 100% on board, HelloHealth opened in 2018. (more…)

2021-03-29T21:06:56+00:00March 29th, 2021|

Did You Know?

According to an IBM study, 72% of employees don’t understand their company’s strategy and 44% feel that their manager doesn’t provide clear information about the company’s vision. The Harvard Business Review discovered that the turnover rate of companies with disengaged employees is 34%. While these numbers may be alarming, they’re all manageable with effective internal communications.

Yes, providing clear, concise, and relatable information to your employees on a timely and consistent basis can go far in improving employee work efficiency and reducing inefficient work practices. Initiatives as simple as distributing a monthly newsletter from top management keeping employees informed can lead to reduced stress and higher productivity rates overall. It may seem overly simple, or something additional you just don’t feel you can take on right now, but enhanced internal communications can make a huge difference for your company.

Powerhouse Planning can help. We offer internal communications services that can help you bring your business to the next level. Contact us today for details.

2021-03-29T21:07:07+00:00March 29th, 2021|

Tips to Improve Internal Communications

By: Meredith Flory

When assessing communication and messaging, many companies focus on their presentation to customers and business partners, not the ways in which employees interact with each other. However, making sure that back-and-forth communication is available and in line with the mission of your company can help increase worker productivity and satisfaction. Here are three ways to improve internal communications.

  1. Respect privacy and boundaries

Many businesses and entrepreneurs are now working from home, whether this was a result of the pandemic or a previous situation due to the nature of your business. This can be a wonderful business perk, especially for people who want to maintain careers while their spouse moves or who need a more flexible schedule as they raise children or serve as caretakers for other family members. However, working from home can also blur the lines of times for rest and privacy, and not all employees may have homes large enough for separate workspaces.

To help prevent burnout and uncomfortable situations, set guidelines that help protect employees’ work/life boundaries ahead of time so that employees are aware of reasonable expectations placed on them, their coworkers, and managers. This communication may include expectations for when video and audio are necessary, what backgrounds are allowed, when the company will provide technology or when the employee should use their own, and what the expected working hours are and if those are firm or flexible.

Due to the pandemic causing children and spouses to be in the same workspaces, teams may need to have conversations about handling sensitive information as well as forgiveness and flexibility for families working in small spaces together. This discussion is particularly helpful for preventing burnout of skilled female employees who statistically have more caretaking burdens. (more…)

2021-03-29T21:07:14+00:00March 29th, 2021|
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