Business & Economy
So You Think You Have Social Media Covered? PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Wednesday, 13 June 2012 07:14
Here Are A Few Reasons You Might Want to Think Again!

I remember when the Internet first gained prominence and it became apparent that having a Web site was essential for any commercial enterprise.

Back then, Web designers were not plentiful and few people thought to hire a professional to create a Web site. They felt that ANY Web presence was better than none at all, and they found people they knew to help them who were “into the whole Internet thing.”

As a PR professional, when I would see a Web site that didn't represent people well or looked amateurish, I'd ask who created it. Invariably, I'd get answers like, “My nephew did it,” or “I bought Web Design for Dummies and did it myself,” or “My son has a friend who just graduated with a degree in computer science.”  While those days have passed for Web sites, I'm afraid I am seeing the same thing happen with regard to social media.

As social media has become a serious part of the foundation of the media in general, some people regard it the same way as they used to regard Web sites – as something that’s a good addition to their marketing tactics, but not so essential that they need to approach it with a professional sensibility. As with any marketing outreach, social media done badly will actually set you back instead of move you forward. Here are some ways to know if you are taking the right approach or heading down the wrong path:

• My Daughter Does That For Me – If your daughter is a college graduate with a broad-based education that includes a degree in mass communications, I'd say you may be on the right track. However, if she’s 18 and her primary qualification is that she has Twitter and Facebook accounts, I'd say you need to reevaluate your choice of marketing personnel here. Just because she’s your daughter and can use Facebook and Twitter, doesn't mean she has the skills necessary to market a business using social media.

• I Hired a College Intern – While college students may be part of the social media generation, it doesn't automatically qualify them to do social media for you. Unlike traditional media, which is a communication to a broad audience, social media is one-to-one marketing outreach. You are communicating directly to individuals and anyone who has ever posted an opinion in an Internet forum knows the online audience is not to be trifled with. Understand that your reputation is on the line. With the variety of questions and comments you will receive, it is critical that they’re handled with care and professionalism to avoid any repercussions to your name and brand. A social media marketing professional is an astute communicator who ensures each time the right tone, caring and message is delivered for maximum return and keeps your audience engaged. This dynamic is crucial for the success of the program.

• I Got 11 New Followers on Twitter This Week – Of course, building followers is important, but you'll never make a social media campaign work with the onesy-twosy approach. For myself, my company and our social media clients, we have a monthly benchmark for building followers. Now, this benchmark is not a gross number, but a net figure after we have weeded out spammers, chronic friend adders, and marriage proposals from men in foreign countries, and yes, I've gotten a few of those.

At the end of the day, social media is serious business.  Do it right and you can create a base of thousands of followers.  Do it wrong and you'll have spent a lot of time and energy, spinning your wheels and getting nowhere fast.  More importantly, you’ll end up thinking that social media marketing is a complete waste of time, when in fact in today’s world it is one of the most critical and fundamental components for any marketing strategy, which every company needs to put in place.

Here’s to your successful social media journey.

About Marsha Friedman

Marsha Friedman is a 22-year veteran of the public relations industry. She is the CEO of EMSI Public Relations (, a national firm that provides PR strategy and publicity services to corporations, entertainers, authors and professional firms. She also co-hosts "The News and Experts Radio Show with Alex and Marsha" on Sirius/XM Channel 131 on Saturdays at 5:00 PM EST.

Schilling to Host Small Biz Cmte Chairman Graves PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Andie Pivarunas   
Monday, 11 June 2012 08:38

Congressmen to visit Sterling’s Kitchen Incubator, host business roundtable in Rock Island

Washington, DC – Congressman Bobby Schilling (IL-17), a member of the House Committee on Small Business, next week will host the Committee’s Chairman Sam Graves (MO-06) in western and northern Illinois for discussions with local business owners on what government can do to empower the private sector, spur job creation, and grow the economy.  Schilling and his family own and operate Saint Giuseppe’s Heavenly Pizzeria in Moline, Illinois.  His experience as a small business owner shapes his understanding of government and its purpose.  Schilling was named to his third Committee, the Small Business Committee, in September 2011, and has hosted a number of business roundtables since taking office a year and a half ago.

“My top priority is creating an environment that promotes economic growth and private sector job creation,” Schilling said.  “I’m honored to serve on the Small Business Committee, and look forward to welcoming Chairman Graves to our area for discussions on what government policies and the private sector, when working together, can do to promote long-term economic growth and put Illinoisans back to work.”

  • Monday June 11, 2012: Chairman Graves and Rep. Schilling visit and tour Kitchen Incubator of Northwest Illinois, 1741 Industrial Drive in Sterling, from 1:00- 2:15pm CST.  Northwest Illinois is abundant with agricultural resources and individuals promoting local foods initiatives.  The Kitchen Incubator is the newest regional asset to further develop local foods business in Illinois, helping to grow businesses and create jobs.  This tour is open to the media, and there will also be a media availability from 2:00-2:15pm.
  • Tuesday June 12, 2012: Chairman Graves and Rep. Schilling will host a business roundtable at the Hy-Vee Club Room, 2930 18th Avenue in Rock Island, from 8:00-9:00am CST.  Whether in roundtables, hearings, or elsewhere Graves, Schilling, and other members of the Small Business Committee are always seeking feedback on how the government helps or harms their businesses, and launched the Small Biz Open Mic as a platform for business leaders to express concerns or suggestions.  While press is welcome to cover the event, in order to respect the privacy of participants please treat business owners' direct quotes as “off the record” unless specifically approved for attribution by the speakers.

Press interested in attending either event should contact Andie Pivarunas with any questions and to RSVP.

# # #

To send Congressman Schilling an e-mail, click here

Schilling Supports Repeal of Health Care Tax PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Andie Pivarunas   
Monday, 11 June 2012 08:14

Votes to stop tax increase on Canton’s Cook Medical, other device manufacturers

Washington, DC – June 7, 2012 - Congressman Bobby Schilling (IL-17) today joined 269 of his colleagues from both sides of the aisle in passing H.R. 436, the Health Care Cost Reduction Act.  This legislation repeals the health care reform law’s 2.3 percent excise tax on medical devices and its prohibition on using flexible health spending accounts to pay for over-the-counter drugs, and also allows individuals to recoup unused contributions made to flexible health spending accounts.  The nonpartisan Congressional Research Service has found that the excise tax on medical devices would be passed on to consumers, raising health care costs, and could discourage investment in developing new innovative devices.  

“Last Friday, the American people received more bad news when the unemployment report said that unemployment rose to 8.2 percent and our economy added only 69,000 jobs in May,” Schilling said. “Good, high-paying jobs at companies like Canton’s Cook Medical will be impacted if Congress and the President don’t work together to repeal this tax.  While efforts continue to repeal the health care law in its entirety and replace it with policies that actually address the rising cost of health care, it is important that we keep focused on repealing some of the most damaging pieces of the massive law – job-killing provisions like the 1099 tax reporting requirement and the medical device tax.”

“We are pleased that the U.S. House of Representatives has acted with a bipartisan vote to repeal the onerous device tax and hope that the U.S. Senate will quickly follow in a bipartisan manner.  This tax will lead to U.S. technology and jobs being relocated outside the U.S., the loss of future jobs that come with innovations being located outside the U.S., and delays in the latest medical innovations being available to American patients.  Americans want their critical devices manufactured in the U.S. and to have access to the latest medical technologies,”  said Steve Ferguson, Chairman of Cook Group, Inc.

Beginning in 2013, the health care reform law institutes a 2.3 percent excise tax on the manufacture or import of medical devices  – devices like those produced by Cook Medical in Canton, Illinois.  Canton is a community in Illinois’ 17th Congressional District that would be harmed by the medical device tax.  Cook Medical has 70 employees, and has aspirations to expand and increase its number of employees by 300 percent in its two Canton facilities by this time next year.  The health care reform law’s medical device tax will not only raise health care costs and stifle research and development on innovative new medical devices at companies like Cook Medical, but will also destroy jobs in an industry that employs more than 400,000 Americans throughout the country – 70 in Canton alone. 

Kevin Meade, the Mayor of Canton, last month wrote Speaker of the House John Boehner in opposition to the medical device tax and the impact it would have on his community.  That letter can be seen by clicking here. Cook Medical joined a number of organizations, companies, and manufacturers in writing Congress to urge for the repeal of the medical device tax.  That letter can be found by clicking here.

# # #

Schilling, Loebsack Applaud Senate Efforts to Workload the Rock Island Arsenal PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Andie Pivarunas   
Friday, 08 June 2012 15:00

Will work to preserve the Arsenal and regional defense manufacturing in final proposal

Washington, DC – Congressman Bobby Schilling (IL-17) and Congressman Dave Loebsack (IA-02), both members of the House Armed Services Committee, today applauded the Senate Armed Services Committee’s advancing of the Fiscal Year 2013 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which has provisions similar to report language Schilling and Loebsack included in the House Armed Services Committee version of the NDAA.  Complementing H.R. 5706, the Army Arsenal Strategic Workload Enhancement Act introduced by Schilling and Loebsack last month, the Senate language would support the Rock Island Arsenal’s manufacturing capabilities while continuing to support the advancement of public-private partnerships.

The House of Representatives passed its version of the defense authorization on May 18, 2012.  Schilling and Loebsack's report language directs the Department of Defense to identify the critical manufacturing capabilities provided by the industrial base in the public and private sectors and determine the amount of work that is required to maintain them in peacetime.

“With the Rock Island Arsenal’s 150th birthday approaching, the best gift we can give its hard-working employees is the certainty of continued workload,” Schilling said. “I’m pleased that the Senate Armed Services Committee acted promptly on their version of the defense authorization, and am looking forward to a final package with the strongest possible protections for the Arsenal and our area’s defense manufacturing capabilities – a package that I hope the full Illinois and Iowa Delegation can support.”

"This is another positive step forward for the arsenal, the people of the Quad Cities and our nation's defense," said Loebsack. "Rock Island Arsenal is central to our region’s economy and it’s highly skilled workforce and advanced manufacturing capabilities are critical to our national security and to our ability to supply our troops with the equipment they need, when they need it.  I look forward to working with the entire bistate, bipartisan and bicameral delegation to move forward and continue the work we started last year."

Schilling and Loebsack were joined by Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), and Mark Kirk (R-IL) in introducing the bicameral Army Arsenal Strategic Workload Enhancement Act on May 9, 2012.  This legislation would help to keep arsenals like Rock Island warm and employees’ skills sharp by requiring that the Army produce a plan to ensure they are properly workloaded.  Though the Army creates such plans for some of its divisions, it currently does not for arsenals.

This legislation builds on Schilling’s and Loebsack’s efforts on the House Armed Services Committee to include in last year’s defense bill the landmark provision lifting the cap on the number of public-private partnerships arsenals are able to enter into, maximizing the possibility for private-sector job growth at installations like the Rock Island Arsenal.  Schilling and Loebsack also included in last year’s bill the provision designating the Rock Island Arsenal as a Center of Industrial and Technical Excellence, further improving its ability to enter into public-private partnerships, provide for our men and women in combat, and strengthen the Arsenal’s core skills and manufacturing abilities.  These provisions were included in last year’s comprehensive defense bill and signed into law by the President.

# # #

To send Congressman Schilling an e-mail, click here

Iowa/Illinois Senators Announce that Senate Committee Approves Provisions from their Bill to Increase Workload at Rock Island Arsenal PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Business & Economy
Written by Sen. Tom Harkin   
Friday, 08 June 2012 12:58

Report language in Defense Authorization bill directs Defense Secretary to create a strategic workload plan for arsenals including Rock Island

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), and Mark Kirk (R-IL)  announced that major portions of their bill to help increase the workload and help ensure the long-term health of Rock Island Arsenal were included in report language that is part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013.

Similar to the Army Arsenal Strategic Workload Enhancement Act of 2012 introduced by the four Senators last month, the Senate Armed Services Committee’s report builds on last year’s bipartisan effort to authorize arsenal Centers of Industrial and Technical Excellence by directing the Secretary of Defense to create a strategic workload plan for arsenals – including Rock Island Arsenal – and report back to Congress no later than February 28, 2013.

“As U.S. military operations overseas wind down, it is imperative that the military maintain its capability to manufacture equipment at facilities like Rock Island Arsenal,” said Harkin. “These facilities are essential to our national security and with the number of Americans they employ, important to our national economy as well. With this report language, we will ensure that the Rock Island Arsenal continues to do what it does best: manufacture the best equipment possible for our military.”

“The Rock Island Arsenal has proven effective in meeting urgent wartime needs,” Grassley said. “Our effort here is to get a plan put in place to make sure this sort of capability is maintained during peacetime so that it can be tapped when needed.”

“The provisions included in today’s report language ensure that the Rock Island Arsenal’s dedicated and highly-skilled workforce is able to continue to serve this country’s economic and national security interests by developing and manufacturing critical weapons, parts and materiel.” Durbin said. “Not only is the Rock Island Arsenal a major employer for the Quad Cities region, it is a recognized source of some of the most sophisticated engineering and manufacturing in the entire country. I am committed to seeing that this measure is fully implemented, and I commend my colleagues for their work in this bipartisan effort to help secure the Arsenal’s future.”

“This measure compliments the efforts of Representatives Bobby Schilling and David Loebsack to protect the Arsenal in Rock Island,” said a spokesperson for Senator Kirk. “It is essential that the Arsenal remains both a local asset to Quad Cities and a strategic defense asset to the nation. The language reflects the importance of maintaining Rock Island's critical manufacturing capability while at the same time ensures critical public-private partnerships move forward to keep the Arsenal healthy long-term.”

On May 9, the Senators introduced the Army Arsenal Strategic Workload Enhancement Act of 2012 which would require the Army to create a strategic plan to ensure arsenals, including Rock Island, receive the workload they need to keep workers’ skills sharp. The Army does this type of systematic planning for some of its components but not for arsenals. The bipartisan bill would also promote the use of arsenals defense-wide.

The bill builds upon a bipartisan effort last year by the Illinois and Iowa Congressional Delegations to expand the Arsenal’s ability to enter into public-private partnerships which are necessary for Rock Island to maintain and improve its workload. Specifically, they secured – as part of the National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 2012 – an unlimited number of public-private partnerships for the Arsenal and the opportunity for the Arsenal to be designated as a Center of Industrial and Technical Excellence, which will permit the Army to automatically assign work to Rock Island based on its expertise.

The Army Arsenal Strategic Workload Enhancement Act of 2012 is cosponsored by Senators John Boozman (R-AR), Kirsten E. Gillibrand (D-NY), Senator Mark L. Pryor (D-AR) and Senator Charles E. Schumer.


<< Start < Prev 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 Next > End >>

Page 174 of 292