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Roadtrip to STL for National Parks and Recreation

Brockton Creative Group is proud to announce its keynote session at the National Parks and Recreation Association (NPRA) Conference this year.

 

We’ve presented at local conferences in Texas, Oklahoma and Missouri, but next month we have the privilege to share with parks professionals from around the nation our experiences, methodology, TORCH™ Data-Driven platform and successes in “parks department marketing”.

 

For the last four years our agency has acquired a deep understanding of the internal and external forces that play key roles in building local brand awareness, driving demand and increasing positive public relations for city parks and recreation departments and districts.

Tim presenting at Missouri Parks and Recreation conference

Tim presenting at Missouri Parks and Recreation conference

“We implement a crawl, walk, run process and mentality with our parks clients that sets realistic expectations and delivers results on several fronts,” says our Managing Partner, Tim McCoy.

 

Many parks departments have, at most, one staff member dedicated to protecting and promoting the brand.

 

Yes, we said one.

 

One person in charge of maintaining a vibrant online presence with a barrage of social outlets. One person to develop, pitch and provide interviews for stories with the media. One person to build a year’s worth of strategy and content, plan and execute events and support the many parks, community centers and other locations they own.

 

These are the factors that have driven our little agency to focus on creating strategic marketing road maps, digital tools and creative ad campaigns for city government departments likes parks & rec.

 

Tim will be sure to send attendees home with a few easy-to-implement marketing hacks to help them move the needle on their brand awareness and engagement so if you don’t plan on attending the session at 3-4:30 p.m. Friday, October 7, be sure to follow the conversation on Twitter and Instagram.

 

Unleashing a New Content Experience

Tonya Manning, Client Experience Director, and myself wanted to make a quick announcement to our loyal customers, fellow colleagues and followers.

We are excited to announce a joint-venture between our branding and interactive agency, Brockton Creative Group, and KC Magazine, the long-running publication celebrating life in Kansas City.

 

We will leverage combined service offerings, products and tools to provide an “Evidence-based, Integrated Content Experience and Audience Engagement”.

 

This new group will be known as Bourbon CX and it is my privilege and pleasure to lead this new chapter with some of the city’s brightest and most talented individuals.

Tonya, the team and I look forward to exploring how this new marketing model will help your brand engage with customers on a more intimate level.

 

Interview with our Technical Director, Kyle Zarazan

Where were you born/raised?

I was born in Illinois and lived there for the first five years of my life. The next three years I spent in Arizona, and then I lived inside the Johnson County bubble until leaving for college at K-State.

What was the best part about your upbringing?

My family.

Alma Mater

I know a spot that I love full well,
‘Tis not in forest nor yet in dell;
Ever it holds me with magic spell,
I think of thee, Alma Mater.
K-S-U, we’ll carry thy banner high.
K-S-U, long, long may thy colors fly.
Loyal to thee, thy children will swell the cry.
Hail, hail, hail, Alma Mater.

College major

Computer Science

I hear you were quite the debater in college. How has this helped shape your career path, if at all? Do you feel it’s contributed directly to your capabilities as a technical director? How so?

Other than the obvious traits like analytic thinking and speaking skills, I learned how to work and collaborate in a team setting. I could probably write a book on this topic.

So, you’re a technical director. Explain your job in 1-3 sentences.

I manage the technical and functional aspects of a project from start to finish. This includes designing the database, programming the web application, hosting and maintaining the website/application.

Briefly describe the path you took to become a technical director. I.e. how does one become a technical director? Are there simple steps they must take, or skills they must possess?

I had the opportunity to work with BCG before I became its Technical Director and the move just made sense for me to subsume a few other responsibilities and continue the work I was already doing. I would say in general in order to become a Technical Director for an interactive agency like BCG you need to have a programming background and immerse yourself on an everyday basis with the different technical solutions that businesses use to create or extend their product/service.

What would your ideal project consist of?

My favorite projects are the ones that revolutionize a process that used to be tedious or expensive.

Where do you go for inspiration? What’s in your google reader?

Can’t say I’m a huge Google reader user, but as far as inspiration is concerned I would say a lot of it comes from projects other people create. For example, I like looking through the code of a massive open-source project and the small edits hundreds of people made to create a single solution.

Apple Or Android?

Android.

What’s your favorite thing about Kansas City?

The people.

What’s your biggest fear in life?

The day I stop learning new things.

Drink of choice?

Dr. Pepper

Cats or Dogs?

Dogs. Cats are acceptable, but inferior.

If you had a famous quote, what would it be?

“No.”

Meet Kirby, Our New Designer

Kirby Chamblin

Kirby hails from KC, and recently graduated from JCCCCCCCC. Her favorite thing about Kansas City is being able to transition from city to country in less than 30 minutes.
Thanks for being so convenient, Kansas City!

When I asked her “Why design?” she replied, “It was an obvious choice. Once I found out what it was I knew I had to do it.”
We commend your passion and commitment to following your heart, Kirby!

Kirby has been with us for just a few months, but in that time, the BCG team has taken it upon themselves to bestow upon her an impressive cornucopia of nicknames. So far, she’s been called:

Kirbinsky, Kirbstein, Kirba-lirba-ding-dong, Kirbohydrate, Kirbola, Kirbster, Kirb, Kirb-Appeal, Kirb Cameron, Kirbs and Whey, Captain Kirb, Kirby Goes Bananas, Kirba-Kirba Bow-Wow, Kirbcumber.
And it won’t stop there, folks!

Let’s run through the basics of Kirby’s likes and dislikes:

Cats or dogs?

Cats. I love their sass.

Chocolate or vanilla?

Mint Chocolate Chip

Is there one food you’d never even think about eating?

…People. And Balut.
Thank you for disliking cannibalism as much as we do, Kirby! I’m sure we’ll all get along just fine!

Currently, Kirby is super turned on to Dribbble. She likes the wide variety of inspiration the site posts daily.

Speaking of inspiration, when Kirby was just a wee lass, she wanted to be everything from a comic book artist to an astronaut when she grew up. We’re glad she landed on graphic design, because she’s damn good at it.

Outside of designing impressive things, Kirby can solve a Rubik’s Cube. Yes, we will actually test that in the coming weeks.

If there was one famous person Kirby could bring back from the dead, it’d be Carl Sagan just so she could kick it with him.

Does Kirby have a favorite quote?

Yep.

If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.
-Albert Einstein

Welcome to BCG, Kirby!

Interview With the Intern

I sat down with the newest addition to the BCG team to pick his brain and get a feel for what makes him tick.

Born in Chicago, currently attending the “School of Hard Knocks,” Tim Shedor joined BCG a couple weeks ago as a programming and interactive web design intern.

You’re probably wondering why Tim has three separate personas. Well, here’s the story behind it:

As many of you know, we already have a Tim here at BCG. Tim McCoy is technically Tim McCoy II, so we couldn’t call Tim Shedor “Tim II,” because McCoy already has claim to that. While wondering aloud what to call the newest Tim, he made the mistake of mentioning the name he uses when perusing Craigslist: Jackson Miller. BOOM! Nickname chosen. He goes by Jack now, for short…or any variation of all three names, really.

I asked Jackson why he got into programming. He’s entirely self-taught, by the way.

“Because it’s the future. Occasionally, it’s exciting to be on the cutting-edge,” he said.

Here at BCG, we pride ourselves on being the first to take a walk along that cutting-edge and peer into the future. Good answer, Jack!

Here’s the skinny on Mr. Miller:

Cats or dogs?

Dogs.

Chocolate or vanilla?

Strawberry.

Is there one food you’d never even think about eating?

Curry.

All-time favorite inspiration website:

http://www.awwwards.com/

When you were a kid, what did you think you’d be when you grew up?

Auditor. Not kidding. My mom is an accountant and she said I was very observational, critical and pessimistic.
(Is it ok if we just nod our heads in agreement to that statement, Jackson?)

Do you have any special talents outside of designing/programming awesome stuff?

I can solder. And wiggle my nostrils voluntarily.

If there was one famous person you could bring back from the dead, who would it be, and what would you ask them?

Ben Franklin. “Were you ever satisfied with yourself?”

Favorite quote/saying?

Staying awake to chase a dream.

Favorite band/artist:

Muse/Spoon/Red Hot Chili Peppers/The Strokes

What’s your favorite thing/part of KC?

K-10. It’s my all-time favorite highway.
(Which is why he spends a good majority of his time riding it back and forth between the River Market and Lawrence, KS)

Welcome to BCG, Jacktimson Miller!

A Conversation with Our Content Strategist

[begin transcribe]

Hollie! How’s it going?

Just great, John. How are you?

Farrahi, great last name. What’s the background?

It’s Persian. My dad is from Iran, born and raised.

And you were raised…in Iran?

Nope, born in a hospital on State Line….just barely on the Missouri side. I claim Kansas City, Missouri, as my hometown.

Good ol’ KCMO,  what is one of the greatest things about KC?

I really enjoy the Loose Park Rose Garden. It’s just so well-maintained; right-out-of-a-book perfect every time you visit. All of Loose Park, really. Ok, so Kansas City parks in general. I really like to hit up the mountain biking trails that run through them. Rode the trails in Swope Park once, and was impressed by their difficulty!

I’ll have to visit some parks, sometime. Did you travel far for college?

Nope, I stayed close and went to KU. I majored in Spanish and Journalism.

¡ESPANOL! ¿COMO ESTAS?

Bien, gracias. Pero yo se que no puedas entender cualquier cosa que digo. Por ejemplo, tu camisa se ve muy mal. No puedo creer que estoy respondiendo a estas preguntas tan ridículas. Supongo que sea mi trabajo, o algo así. Seguimos, entonces.

Uh…. yeah. Lawrence, Kansas, has a pretty good music scene, did you see any killer shows?

I’ve definitely seen my fair share of concerts while at KU. Citizen Cope and Jenny Lewis were pretty good shows, but I can say the Bassnector show was probably one of the most memorable ones.

Besides rocking out at Liberty Hall the rest of your life, what did you think you would be doing after college?

I wanted to work at an agency as a brand/account manager. It didn’t have to be a huge agency, just a place where I could get my feet wet and learn. I wanted to be in a creative fun environment.

Hollie Farrahi Baby Pic Cool
Looks like Hollie’s always been one to turn up the fun and creativity. Photo circa 1992

Sounds like you’re in a good place then…okay…anyway. Rapid fire. Go!

Favorite Color:

Dark green, but not lime green.

One instrument you want to learn?

Electric Harp

Uh, Ok? Favorite Book?

Oh, wow. There are so many, but if I had to choose, I’d go with The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay. If you like comic books—or amazing writing—this book is for you.

Favorite Ice Cream?

Mint Chocolate Chip

Prison Meal?

Ghormehsabzi

Huh, calling names?

No! It’s called Ghormehsabzi. It’s Persian and delicious! It’s has spinach and lots of other leafy greens, beef and red beans all served over basmati rice. Yep, I can taste it now.

Ok, ok that does sound delicious. It’s getting late and now I’m hungry, lunch?

Ghormehsabzi?

[end transcribe]

Interview With the Interactive Director

Born and Raised in

KCMO

Attended:

Kansas State University

Majored in:

Bachelor of Fine Arts, emphasis in Visual Communication

Why BCG?

A young Resman Googled “Graphic Design Kansas City,” and BCG was one of the top hits. Their website enticed him, so he applied. The rest is history.

Designer gone rogue:

John began his time at BCG as a graphic design intern. The company needed a new website, so he stepped up and decided to have a go at it.

After consuming as many instructional materials as he could, John fell naturally into line with thousand-line-long CSS rules and endless HTML tags (though he now enjoys the challenge of writing styles in the least amount of lines). The modern father of web standards Jeffrey Zeldman’s books on web design resonated most with John and pushed him down the path he’s still on now.

Surprisingly enough, Resman found that in learning programming, he began to recall his days as a mechanical engineering major at K-State, which was his focus before he switched to Fine Arts. The analytical and technical elements so crucial to mechanical engineering surfaced among the back end of the websites John started developing. It came naturally to him.

Other Influences:

John worked at the Beach Museum of Art for all four years he attended K-State. It was there he got his first taste of user experience design; he was responsible for displaying the artwork in such a way that guided the viewer through the exhibit in a natural progression. The goal was always for users to interact with a piece of art from all angles and to know intuitively which piece to continue onto next.

What’s in his Bookmarks:

FFFFound
Non-traditional approach to design inspiration

A list apart
Places the emphasis on usability. Responsible for tracking and contributing to the evolution of front end web development.

Beyond BCG:

Quite the gifted musician, John plays in two bands.

He plays bass guitar for Drunkards Dream and guitar for a surf band called The King DeVilles, who often cover popular surf musicians such as Los Straight Jackets.

John is also an avid Wiz—er—Sporting KC fan, and likes to play a little soccer himself.

Favorite Color:

#272727

A Quote to leave you with:

“Take what you do very seriously, but never yourself.”

Interview with the Interns

We’re happy to introduce the latest additions to our creative team: Josh and Micaela!

Let’s get to know them.

MICAELA CLARKE

Micaela the intern

Hometown: Omaha, NE

University: KU

Biggest source of design inspiration:
I could sit and look at design books for hours. I can’t wait to have money to actually buy all of the books I want.

Last book you read:
“Surprise Me: Editorial Design” by Horst Moser

Last movie you watched:
There’s Something About Mary

Why design?
I love to create and inspire. Plus, I don’t do tests.

Chocolate or vanilla: Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate

Coffee or tea: Coffee

Favorite food: Enchiladas or salsa. Can’t go wrong with spicy.

Puppies or kitties: Puppies. Never had a cat be nice to me.

Favorite quote:
“Everything will be ok in the end. If it’s not ok, it’s not the end.”

If someone wrote your biography, what would it be titled?
“Look What This Girl Can Do”

JOSH LIOTTA

Josh the intern

Hometown: Manhattan, KS

University: K-State

Biggest source of design inspiration:
Design books and blogs

Last book you read:
“How to be a Graphic Designer Without Losing Your Soul” by Adrian Shaughnessy

Last movie you watched: Catfish

Why design?
Playing for the NBA didn’t pan out.

Chocolate or vanilla: Vanilla

Coffee or tea: Coffee

Favorite food: Pulled pork tacos

Puppies or kitties: Turtles.

If someone wrote your biography, what would it be titled?
“Peace, Love, Adobe”

Josh and Micaela have hit the ground running. We’re excited to see what these creative minds will produce in the months to come!