My oldest child – Matter – turns 15 this weekend. It’s no April Fool’s prank that our incorporation date is the first of April, 15 years ago. We’re enthusiastically celebrating this milestone as an agency later this year, but it’s…
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When you think about it, something had to give. Everything changes, and the communications world is hardly immune to the digital upheaval forcing so many industries to innovate or, conversely, die on the vine. To be crystal clear, public relations…
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I’ve read – and written – plenty of stories and blog posts about how PR is a different gig than it was even 10 years ago. It’s obvious to me because I see what our teams at Matter create, execute…
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Today, Mandy Mladenoff was promoted to President here at Matter. In her new position, Mandy will guide our agency’s strategy while managing our dynamite people, and she will be even more active in planning for our future growth. She will…
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I’m thrilled that the Boston Business Journal recognized Matter as the third largest PR and social media firm in the Greater Boston area, and that we’ve enjoyed a steady upward trajectory for each year of our existence. It’s a testament…
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“From what we get, we can make a living; what we give, however, makes a life.” – Arthur Ashe I am excited to share that the talented professionals here at Matter have reached their objective of dedicating more than 500…
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The sun is shining here in New England, so there’s hope that the spring season has finally arrived. And, with warm weather and sunny skies comes the thought of spring cleaning – getting the things around you in order so…
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Earlier this week, we shared news about Matter acquiring Skyscope, an established video services agency with offices in Cambridge and Worcester, Massachusetts, and I’m elaborating on this event and sharing a few reasons why this deal makes good sense –…
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The statistics are everywhere: people are hungry for online video. Overall, research estimates that the number of video views among Internet users grows north of 25 percent per year. If you think that number is going to recede any time…
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Few dates on the calendar mean more to the PR and social media experts at Matter Communications than St. Patrick’s Day. That Irish holiday represents an opportunity for deliberate merriment – as opposed to ad hoc happiness that occurs with…
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Having worked at a number of PR agencies before Matter – and proudly sharing that I had a great experience at each stop! – I can credibly comment on the kind of in-office behavior that helps keep an environment professional…
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Last week I shared some thoughts related to the experience that clients have when engaged with a PR and social media agency that has a national presence – and this week I had the opportunity to spend some time with…
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The opening of our new and expanded office in Boston has me thinking about all of our office locations – 5 nationwide – and how we’ve situated our smart and savvy staff in regions that directly benefit our clients. Here…
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I’m thrilled to spread the news that – with gusto! – Matter just expanded its footprint in the city of Boston! We’ve moved from our modest shared space to a custom-built location designed to encourage smart thinking, creativity, and which…
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I just spoke with a dynamite young professional who is moving to the mid-west and leaving Matter after four years – Molly, we will miss you! – and that quick chat reminded how I am able to see more clearly…
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Last week I had the tremendous pleasure of collecting the hardware associated with our agency being named a “Top Place to Work” by the Boston Globe – for the third year in a row! – and I’m taking some time…
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I spent some time this week connecting with contacts that I hadn’t seen in some time, and was reminded of the value and importance of doing so in person. Technology has given all of us plenty of opportunity to connect…
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This week Volkswagen will try to react to its tremendously damaging emissions scandal with the effectiveness of an airbag, and hopefully one that’s been approved by the regulators. The company has a new CEO – the former one ousted recently…
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Our PR and social media agency has enjoyed the many benefits of having a full-service, award-winning creative team in-house. In fact, that group is growing like gangbusters and doing great work for clients like LoJack, as you can see here.…
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“Boomerang Employees” are a commonly discussed trend in today’s business environment, and something that’s fully embraced here at Matter, our PR and social media firm. We’ve had several employees – who we love, by the way! – leave for a…
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Did you see Hugh Grant on Jay Leno years ago when he was asked about picking-up a prostitute? (The classic TV moment of Leno asking Grant “what the hell were you thinking?”) The same could be asked of the customers…
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A good game of Bocce – the Italian sport played for centuries – is a lot like life, and here’s how: First, every bocce game is as competitive as you want it to be. If you are hungry for the…
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Unless you are living in a cave or on an uninhabited island far away – and, frankly, I can’t even think of another scenario that applies – then you already know of the allegations related to a massive FIFA scandal…
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We’re hiring – in all of our offices, really – and I thought to contribute to the recruiting effort by sharing some perspective as to why working at PR agency Matter Communications is a great way to go. I’m a…
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A topic related to domain names has been raising eyebrows – and plenty of questions – in marketing circles lately. Soon people will be able to purchase the .sucks top-level domain, and in doing so potentially create problems for brands…
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Today our PR and social media firm announced the acquisition of Search Maven Media, a New England-based agency specializing in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM). It’s a deal that has been in the works for a…
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Earlier this week I was discussing with my colleagues the many ways good PR and social media can help start-ups during a crisis, which, left unchecked, can spread like wildfire in today’s digital age. That discussion inspired me to capture…
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The key to creating a lasting relationship between a PR agency and a client is to never take his or her loyalty for granted, even when things are going well. That’s easy to say, but hard to do consistently. Taking…
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  We’re on the eve of Valentine’s Day weekend, and it’s an appropriate time to share some perspective as to what I love about working in a bustling PR agency. There’s plenty to say about my beautiful wife and my…
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It’s snowing. Again. While it’s easy for some folks to get frustrated by the weather, I look at a snowy day when I can’t get into the office as an opportunity to make some progress on the to-do list. Considering…
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I’ve thought for some time that the start of February marks the official kickoff of the business year, particularly for those of us in public relations, social media and creative agencies. Here are a few reasons why that’s the case:…
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Beginning this morning, I’m joined by a number of guys at our PR and social media firm Matter Communications who are participating in the Movember initiative, a program designed to raise awareness (and funds!) for various forms of men’s cancer,…
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Years ago it was a simpler time for PR firms. You’d land a client, find the right news hook, set up a media tour and hit the road to visit analysts and journalists. Then, you’d count up all the news…
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Some people shudder at the thought of summer coming to end, but not me. I love all that is associated with the warm and sunny months, including the last week of August. However, I equally love the start of September…
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Work hard and play hard. While so cliché, that expression accurately describes the tone at many PR and social media agencies – and Matter Communications is no exception. We embrace the philosophy that office-wide extra circular activities ensure that our…
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A number of marketing professionals view public relations firms as a team of people who can pitch the media and get interviews. But a top PR agency can do so much more than that. Here are six ways that PR…
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It’s not so smart to start a debate about which of the seasons is preferred, so let’s agree that summer is terrific. It may not be the “best” of the four in the minds of many, but it is typically…
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Often PR firms get a bad rap, and sometimes it’s deservedly so. If your agency sits on its heels and waits for you to “provide some news,” the result is predictably underwhelming. Why? Because that’s not a partnership, but rather…
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We’re fortunate at Matter Communications to receive our share of Requests for Proposals (RFPs) from some of the nation’s leading consumer and B2B brands. No complaints there; we’re working on several right now. It’s certainly better to be included than…
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I’m subscribing to Time magazine, again. I am an avid fan. I love the snapshots of timely news complemented by insightful feature stories. I like the balance of world news and localized human interest pieces, and I absolutely love the…
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We’re currently in the running for some dynamite new PR and social media business, and assembling our teams and preparing presentations. (By the way, that’s a rather significant process briefly summarized in one sentence!) The decision of who attends which…
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There are hundreds of public relations firms in North America, the majority of which aren’t “names you know.” PR firms you’ve heard of are in your mental rolodex for a reason: they’ve done noteworthy work for brands with name recognition.…
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On the heels of the NFL draft – the opportunity for football franchises to pick the very best available college players for any positions on their teams – I’m thinking about the characteristics of professionals that are most valuable to…
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I understand we have a new crop of summer interns starting soon, and thought to share some tips on how they can make the most of their time here at Matter. Public relations internships embody the term, “You’ll get out…
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Have the bright lights that once shined on your new and exciting website felt dimmer lately? Has the proliferation of social channels – and the opportunity provided to publish content in all shapes and sizes – negatively impacted the power…
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Often in this business, you find yourself so far down in the weeds that determining what’s working well isn’t obvious. The smarter agencies have measurable metrics – something championed here at Matter since our inception eleven years ago – that…
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As our creative team is in the process of producing a satellite media tour that’s reaching no less than 25 national media outlets today – from the studio here at our office – the increased importance of solid distribution channels…
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As a three-time recipient of a “Best Place to Work” in Boston award from the Boston Business Journal, a distinction I’m proud of for obvious reasons, I was puzzled to learn that in 2014 public relations firms like Matter Communications…
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In a world that embraces creative content, one of the best ways to leverage the many smart and savvy resources in an agency like Matter is to hold a brainstorm. Inviting a group to discuss new and exciting ways to…
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Our agency celebrated St. Patrick’s Day last week – it was a hoot, by the way! – and our family did more celebrating this past weekend. And, naturally, I’m making plans to celebrate again tonight. In the meantime, I thought…
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It’s NFL playoff time, and the New England Patriots are again looking like league leaders. With a weekend win over Indianapolis, our boys are packing their bags and preparing for what will surely be a tough test when they play…
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The Consumer Electronics Show – the preeminent event for anyone interested in leading-edge consumer technologies – is officially underway in Vegas. Having attended the show a seemingly countless number of times, I feel qualified to provide some practical tips on…
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Later today, the majority of our staff (and their plus-ones!) will be gathering to celebrate the season.  Like so many agencies nationwide, we’ll share holiday joy by eating, drinking and being merry. After a full year of helping our clients…
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I’m dealing with a salesperson that has crossed the line from persistent to annoying, and doesn’t understand what we do and need. He’s spamming me with crazy regularity and the content of his pitch is meaningless to me and my…
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All editorial pitches are opportunities for expression. Through email, direct messages on Twitter, inMail on LinkedIn or any other communications channel, editorial pitching provides us PR professionals with a creative channel for securing a story. It’s an art form, really,…
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These days it’s impossible to find an article written about our business that doesn’t cover the emphasis currently being put toward visual story telling.  It’s an exciting part of a PR and social media gig, and should be a big…
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Like most businesses in America, next week the dedicated employees here at Matter will take a well-deserved break from their press releases, editorial pitches and blog posts as they celebrate Thanksgiving. Matter will have an abbreviated work day on the…
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Like so many before them, the past few days here at Matter have been terrific.  The fullness of Fall – with programs moving forward full steam ahead and planning for next year well underway – always keeps us busy. That…
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Yesterday’s double-whammy reminder of how the world remains an ever-changing orb of technological advancement came in the form of an exciting IPO reminiscent of the pre-bursting bubble from 15 years ago, alongside the death knell of a legacy business that…
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Visual storytelling.  For much of the year I’ve been talking with colleagues, prospects and clients about the powerful and very real impact that this kind of story-telling has on any communications initiative. Obvious to any audience who experiences and embraces…
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Fall is fully upon us – and there’s no looking back now. The leaves have fallen from the trees and the clocks are set back marking an earlier end to the light of day.  It’s playoff time for high school…
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The old saying “All publicity is good publicity” does not apply to high-profile athletes who endorse, support or promote unhealthy food. It’s bad PR for Lebron James, the reigning NBA Finals MVP, to position himself as a fan of McDonald’s…
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Two top-of-mind topics collided yesterday when I was forwarded a dynamite article about the technology that goes into the catamarans currently racing in the America’s Cup. My affinity for sailing overlapped with my day job – the article provided another…
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We started working with a few new (and terrific!) clients in the past couple of months, and early reports indicate that all systems are go and we’re off and running positively. These same reports also indicate that our smart and…
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I’m pumped about the start of football season, and am so looking forward to watching my Patriots weekly this fall and (fingers crossed!) early winter. If Tom Brady and our boys can meet the expectations of Sports Illustrated – that…
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I – along with Jesse Ciccone, a Managing Director here at Matter – have had the luxury of spending the week in the Pacific Northwest with Kent Hollenbeck and Josh Rein, two of the dynamite professionals who joined Matter earlier…
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My LinkedIn profile lists the (modest in length) stops I made as a PR professional. For the past 20 years I held corporate-side gigs and carried the business card of a number of public relations agencies. I worked in shops…
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Miley Cyrus’ performance at Sunday evening’s MTV Video Music Awards was a poor idea. While pleasing a few – maybe? – she offended the masses while trying way too hard to show the world that she was Hannah Montana no…
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Most public relations and social media agencies still haven’t seen the light. They haven’t yet embraced creative deliverables as a requisite for going to market in today’s communications world.  Most haven’t complemented their existing client programs with high-impact videos, infographics,…
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It’s summer and, as we typically do, our agency has a crop of enthusiastic public relations and social media interns supporting our account teams and helping to market our agency. Similar to intern groups we’ve had here at Matter previously,…
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Summertime at a PR agency is an interesting season for a few reasons. Sure, the staff has an extra lift in its collective step because the weather is nicer (with the exception of places like the San Francisco Bay area,…
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It’s official: after months of careful research and planning, today we open the doors to our new, full-service PR office in Portland, Oregon by acquiring The Hollenbeck Group in Portland. The new office will be run by long-time PR veteran…
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The public relations industry is enjoying something of a renaissance in recent years, because social media is all about engagement, and engagement has always been the lifeblood of solid PR pros. It’s what we do, whether it’s building relationships with…
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This article originally appeared in PRWeek. There is no shortage of reasons why a company will seek out new PR representation, but here I’m summarizing three points made to me by a number of new business prospects that have recently…
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I’m pleased to announce that we’ve officially launched our physical studio space at the Tannery in Newburyport, right across the parking lot from Matter HQ. Tomorrow night we’re hosting an open house, so area businesses can get a closer look…
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This post originally appeared in PRWeek. Every PR agency CEO eventually gives up a modicum of control to his or her staff, because growth means the principals hire managers and VPs who oversee the day-to-day work done on behalf of…
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The statistics are everywhere: people are hungry for online video. Overall, research estimates that video views among Internet users grew by 23% this year. If you think that number is going to recede any time soon, you’re likely also banking…
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When you’ve run a PR agency as long as I have – ten years and proudly counting – you begin to notice patterns of behavior from the marketing folks who are your prospects. There are a lot of brilliant CMOs…
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I’m excited about the 4th Lunchspotting event that we are hosting in conjunction with MITX at PayPal Media Network in Boston’s Innovation District, and here are the two reasons why: First, everyone eats lunch. Right? At the very minimum, everyone…
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The writing is on the wall, as they say. When something’s not right with your PR firm, the problem isn’t always easy to pinpoint, but eventually it becomes glaring – if you know where to look.  Here are three reasons…
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I try to reserve this blog space for insights about public relations, social media and marketing, but every now and again something happens at our PR agency that deserves comment. A few days ago my firm won the Boston Business…
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I once told a young family member of mine to learn to sell, because “you’re always selling something to someone.” Like I’m doing now, trying to get you interested in whatever I’m going to type below. For years I’ve thought…
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This post originally appeared in PRWeek. It’s become something of a sport for social media and business types to beat up on the youngsters joining the ranks of PR: They’re too self-absorbed. They don’t think long-term. They feel entitled. They…
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 Having been around the block a while, I believe I have a good understanding of the personal characteristics that are commonly found in a successful PR professional. At a minimum, these are the traits of the folks we seek when…
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This post originally appeared as an article in O’Dwyer’s PR Magazine. I’m a visual guy — and have always been. My earliest PR client was Kodak, many moons ago, in a time when it was common to pitch silver-halide film…
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I turned 40 today and that means I’ve reached a significant milestone in my life: that I’m a hell of a long time away from when I spent time faxing out my press releases. Eighteen  years ago, I was an…
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I’ve been reflecting on the past ten years of managing clients here at Matter, and another decade before that at other agency stops. And while my peers often write about “what makes a great PR client,” I think it’s equally…
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The world was a much different place in April, 2003, when we first hung our shingle. If your memory is exceptional, you may remember that month in history included Prisoner of war United States Army Private Jessica Lynch being rescued…
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Our PR agency is celebrating its 10th anniversary next week – more on that topic later – and I’ve been thinking about the ups and downs of running our business since we hung a shingle in 2003. While we’re incredibly…
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Ever been tempted to pay for a PR placement? You pitch the perfect story and the editor just won’t bite.  You go back a second time with no luck, so you think to yourself: “Man, I wish I could pay…
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Today, St. Joseph’s Day, the principal feast day of St. Joseph in the Roman Catholic Church, will be celebrated with revelry worldwide. Cities will close their streets for parades, celebrations will dominate the news headlines, and red and white (the…
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Speaking strictly as a PR guy, if I were a Cardinal in Rome charged with electing the next holiest Man on the planet, I’d take my sweet old time getting to the finish line. Here’s why: Only Google has the…
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We’re visual people – and have always been. Many of our early clients were in digital imaging. We represented companies from capture to print, and everything in between. (And, in the case of Lexar, the long-term Matter client and leader…
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With the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) about to begin, I’m sharing a few ideas for successful PR execution at this highly unique event.  Beyond all of the necessary and appropriate actions that should take place in advance of the show…
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The end of another year is upon us – and tonight we celebrate. I’m thoroughly excited to gather as a group and celebrate the season and agency successes of the past 12 months.  In addition to reveling with our dynamite…
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Stating the very obvious, not all things go as planned. Matter is among a group of forward-thinking businesses here in Newburyport that ordered a branded electric scooter from a new-to-town dealer this past spring. Having ordered product from that same…
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As I occasionally do on Wednesdays in the spring, summer and fall, I crewed on a friend’s J105 last evening for a weekly sailing competition in Boston Harbor. On beautiful evenings like last night, I’m reminded that participating in such…
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Earlier today, Mark Wasserman at Mashable reported (check out the great graphics after that jump) on the results of a Buddy Media report that details consumer Twitter engagement with brands. One of the interesting realizations was that consumer engagement drops…
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Earlier this week, we issued a press release about growth in our office in Providence.  In addition to celebrating our office’s sixth anniversary, we announced that we were recently selected to work with two leading technology companies in the area,…
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The soccer players on Team Australia are a smart, savvy and passionate bunch. They are committed to the sport of soccer and to improving their game. They are full of energy and have a seemingly endless desire to be better.…
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The US soccer team just failed to qualify for the 2012 Olympic Games. Last night they lost a “must-win” game to El Salvador and they will not move to the next round of Olympic qualifying. Considering the progress soccer is…
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Here at Matter, we find lots of reasons to have fun together.  Writing in a way that helps me avoid a too popular cliché, we work very hard and like to blow off steam as a group.  I’m fully in…
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Suddenly, the New York Knicks are reeling.  Only a few weeks removed from a winning streak of similar scope, last night they lost their sixth straight game.  They have slipped back to the eighth spot in the playoffs.  More concerning…
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Walking through our office kitchen yesterday morning I caught a glimpse of Tim Hurley, one of our new guys, talking with Matt Landry, one of our old guys. (The latter doesn’t mind that label – it’s a point of pride…
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Recently a colleague of mine did the unthinkable and tried to send a text while driving on the local-area bobsled course (a.k.a. Route 1 South) on the way home from work.  While I know nothing about the text – whether…
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The Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center, the highly-respected (and now nationally-known) Newburyport-based organization that developed a ground-breaking program toward ending domestic violence in local communities, is one of the many local charitable entities supported by Matter. We have contributed to this…
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I like connecting with people and have always found the phone to be my preferred channel to do exactly that. If I can’t see you in person, I’d like to hear your voice. I’ll gladly read your words, but I’ll…
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This morning I read that Texas A&M is leaving the Big 12 for another major sports conference, likely the Southeastern Conference (SEC). I have no connection to the Big 12 but as a fan of college football, I know this…
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You don’t have to be the son of two science teachers (like yours truly) to have an interest in space travel and NASA’s soon to conclude space shuttle program. I clearly remember watching early space shuttle launches on live television…
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In the great cinematic achievement that was Demolition Man (with Sylvester Stallone and Wesley Snipes in a dystopian near-future) every restaurant, no matter how humble or fancy, was a Taco Bell.  The film explained that The Bell had won the…
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I’m showing my age by giving attention to a topic related to content published “above the fold.” While conceptually the fold will always exist, the practicality of such a position isn’t as relevant as it once was. (You can guess…
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As we are currently experiencing a significant (insert “long-overdue”) office build-out, it’s a bit nuttier these days at Matter in Newburyport than usual.  We’re expanding our space here at the Tannery to accommodate our growth and acquiring an additional 2,500…
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If you follow Matter on Facebook, then you already know that our much beloved office manager, Ellen, recently left our company – after six years! – to pursue another professional opportunity. (Noteworthy is the fact that only Ellen could arrange…
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Nope. Not this time. Despite the predictions of Harold Camping, the California preacher and religious radio broadcaster, the world did not end last month.  And, as a result, two to three percent of the Earth’s population has to wait a…
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While not nearly as satisfying an experience so far as we had hoped, our much-beloved Boston Red Sox have begun their 2011 campaign. Having crept over .500, and even into or near first place in the division, they are far…
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In a way that only my wife can do, she responded to me lamenting about my Fantasy Football team’s poor performance on Sunday by suggesting I pretend my team won. That’s a good point, really. If I can pretend I…
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My Father is an eternal optimist. Without energy or effort, he’s able to identify the positive aspects of every situation. Bad weather is an opportunity to read a good book. A home project gone awry becomes a learning experience. He’s…
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Last week, I was reminded of how much I value in-person meetings. My team and I met with long-standing client Lexar for the purpose of planning our program for the year ahead. While we’ve been working as an extension of…
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