Update: How to Navigate the New LinkedIn Layout

If you’ve logged onto your LinkedIn profile lately, you might have noticed some changes.  LinkedIn has decided to change their desktop experience to make it a “world-class, elegant and sophisticated user experience” with the changes reflecting consistency with more features on the mobile app. The new layout is simple and intuitive, with each element having a specific place on the screen.  

Change can be a great thing, but change can also be really hard and difficult to cope with, so I’m here to tell you that it’s going to be OK! If you are struggling with the new layout of LinkedIn, here is a list of the important things you need to know in order to navigate effectively:

 

Save profile to PDF

On your profile you now have the option of sharing your profile and saving your profile as a PDF. If you are visiting another person’s profile on LinkedIn, you can Save it as PDF, share the profile, remove the connection, report/block, unfollow, request a recommendation, or recommend the person.

linkedin-update-layout

 

More Stylised Layout with a Bigger Focus on the Newsfeed

LinkedIn has made their look much more sleek and therefore more efficient.   When you log on, you are immediately directed to your newsfeed that emphasizes  LinkedIn Posts (now called Articles), so that you can stay up to date on your connections’ latest shares, thoughts, and opportunities.

linkedin-update-layout

New Messaging System

LinkedIn has revamped their messaging system and made it similar to Facebook Messenger. They have now included a chatbot to help you schedule meetings through Google Calendar. It is much easier to view your past messages (that are located on the left sidebar), and if you are struggling to find a particular message with someone, you can search their name or keywords. You even have the option of turning on your read receipts!

linkedin-update-layout

Finding Out How Many Connections You Have is Easier

If you have over 500 connections, it wasn’t always the easiest to find out the exact number of connections you have, but now it is! Just click on “Network” at the top of the page and the number of connections you have will appear on the top left side of your screen. You can even sort them by first name, last name, and recently added.

linkedin-layout-update

More Emphasis on Notifications

You can click on the “Notifications” tab to view each and every notification you have received, including who’s viewed your profile recently, your connections’ new positions or work anniversaries in addition to the Articles they share.  LinkedIn also emails you when something noteworthy happens on your LinkedIn account, so that even if you aren’t logged in, you will never miss out on the action!

linkedin-update-layout

 

Social media is ever-changing and new updates will occur soon enough, but until then Happy Navigating!

Event Recap: PPRA Broadcast Media Panel

Tips to get your stories on air: recap of PPRA’s Broadcast Media Panel

PPRA has done it again.  On February 17th, the organization gathered a diverse group of broadcast media professionals to tell us, PR professionals, how to get our stories on air.  The all-star panel, moderated by Susan Buehler, Chief Communications Officer at PJM Interconnection, discussed pet peeves, tips, what not to do and more when trying to pitch their broadcast stations. The panelists were:

I know that I’ve pitched these stations at least five times and in some cases have never heard back, so attending this panel was a must.

Here are some tips on how to get Philadelphia broadcast stations to air your story:

  • First and foremost, think of the bigger picture. Steve McKenzie reminded us PR pros to relate our pitch back to the station’s viewers, not just our clients “What are they going to want to see?”. Also, everything is intertwined now-a-days, when writing your pitch ask yourself “will this story do great on social media?”  It all boils down to how many people the story effects.
  • Timing is truly everything.  Whether you’re pitching a story that needs coverage tomorrow or reaching out 3 months in advance, stories need to be relevant.  For Jodi Harris, she cares about stories happening now.  Chances are, if you send a pitch about an event happening in May you won’t get an immediate response from her and she’ll circle back when the event is closer.  On the other hand, Tim Walton said he’s accepting summer pitches now.
  • Email first, tweet later. At least that’s how Paul Kurtz likes to be contacted.  He, as most of us probably agree, prefer to be contacted via email first. If you don’t hear back from him, then you can feel free to slide into his DM’s.
  • Know your audience. Don’t pitch blindly! Don’t pitch a story to Iris Delgado if there’s no hispanic tie.  You wouldn’t go into a sneaker story looking for a pair of heels, right? Exactly. Just be sure to do your homework on the outlet you’re pitching to.

Hopefully these tips were as helpful to you as they were to me. Now I know to ask my clients how their company affects the latino community so I can get on Iris’s radar! Happy pitching!

Marketing and Communications – The Difference

Google “what’s the difference between marketing and communications” and you will find plenty of jargon and meaningless language.  And yet there is a reason that the two terms are both separate and paired.  Unfortunately, the distinctions aren’t clear to many C-level executives at mid-market companies who are trying to do their best with limited budgets.  

Here’s a simple distinction: marketing is any one-way message distributed to your audience and communications is anything that requires two-way interaction.  Let’s look at some examples:

marketing-communications

Website

SquareSpace is all about making a beautiful website.  A beautiful website does not require people to respond to it in order for it to be effective.  People read the writing and view the photos.  If they’re interested, they buy a product or fill out a form.  It’s a one-way communication, which means it’s marketing.

marketing-communications

Earned Media

Getting a media placement – whether a reported story or a bylined article – always requires a conversation between a PR person and a reporter or editor.  That’s why it’s earned.  Another person must agree in order for the article to happen.  There must be a compelling, two-way conversation.

marketing-communications

Billboard

Billboards get a simple message to a lot of people.  They view it briefly while driving by or stare at it for hours while sitting in traffic.  Brand impressions in this media do not require interaction.  They do not demand any deeper explanation or understanding.  They are 100 percent marketing.

marketing-communications

Social Media

Social media is inherently social – which means that when it is done well, it is about people.  People always want brands to talk with them, not at them.  While some people will argue that social media should belong to marketing, I strongly advocate that it sits with communications because those professionals are trained in the art of earning trust through conversation.

So why does all this matter?  Well, the truth is that most professionals either have a marketing background or communications training, not both.  They have either honed their expertise in having two-way conversations or they haven’t.  They either know how to earn brand impressions or they have paid to generate them.  Companies that entrust their promotional efforts to communications professionals will benefit from deeper, more engaging interactions with their current and prospective conversations.  So, as you think about your promotional plan in 2017, consider what kind of communications your company should have and who you want to do that work.

2017 Social Media Forecast

New Year means new trends!  As you know, social media is constantly changing and developing.  Something is trending one day and then you forget about it the next.  However, these four social media trends are sure to stick around and continue to grow in 2017.

Live Video Content

Live Video Content is on the rise this year!  Youtube, of course, is the most well known website for sharing and posting videos.  However, now some of these videos can seem unrealistic and fake because of all the editing technology we have.  Now social media is taking it to a new level–an authentic level–Live Video.

There are tons of different streaming sites and platforms, but you may be familiar with Facebook Live and Periscope because they are two of the most popular.  They launched in November and December of 2016.  Periscope’s annual 2016 recap showed that users watched 110 years of live video using the app.  News sources have even cited Facebook Live videos when covering big news stories.  Even Instagram has begun to test the waters with creating their own version of live video streaming.

Messenger Apps

What’s your first thought when you think social media?  Easy.  Social media websites.  Yet the messenger apps Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber, and WeChat together have more users than leading social media apps such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.  

Millennials’ preferred way of communication is through SMS messaging and OTT (over-the-top) messaging because it allows for more personalized and one-on-one communication.  Therefore businesses and brands are jumping on the bandwagon in order to better their customer service.  These apps are making it possible for customers to instantly connect and receive assistance rather than being put on hold or playing email tag.

Social Commerce

More and more consumers are utilizing social media outlets to buy products. Sponsored Facebook and Instagram advertisements are getting more and more attention, especially because the links will take you directly to a product you have showed interest in.  Other uprising consumer and branding tools, such as the app liketoknowit, helps companies sell their products, while at the same time, helps common people promote themselves while earning money and presence on social media.  After downloading the app, every time you like a photo on Instagram that also uses the app, you will get a direct email with all of the outfit details with links to the exact product.  So now making purchases via social media is extremely simple, convenient, and entertaining.

Augmented Reality

Augmented reality is a “live direct or indirect of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are supplemented by computer generated sensory input, such as sound, video, graphics, or GPS data.”  So in other words filters and Pokemon Go.  There are tons of apps that allow you to warp your face from beautiful, flower princesses to scary zombies to clearing your face from acne, to making yourself look tan, to catching Pokemon in your house or at work.  Snapchat and Instagram were at the forefront of augmented reality in 2016 and are expected to only grow in 2017.  Facebook has now joined in and started to experiment with lenses and masks in Facebook Live, which enables users to try a variety of different masks and lenses when sharing a live video.        

The Best Ads of Super Bowl LI

Although some die-hard sports fans tune into the Super Bowl every year to watch a battle on the field, the rest of the world is equally as interested in the world’s top companies producing advertisements that are sure to make you laugh, cry, or have some type of strong emotional reaction. The 51st Super Bowl produced just that. With over 50 ads being shown in what would be considered ‘prime advertising real estate’, the competition for who has the best commercial was fierce for Super Bowl LI. Some commercials followed suit in creating hysterical cameos, while other companies took a turn and used their ad as a vehicle for political statements.  Here are the top five advertisements of Super Bowl LI:

Budweiser ‘Born The Hard Way’

Shifting gears from their normal ads starring horses and puppies creating memorable bonds that could make anyone shed a tear, Budweiser depicted the story of how Eberhard Anheuser met German immigrant Adolphus Busch and together created the beloved brewing company. Some could speculate that Budweiser’s immigrant story is a timely response to recent executive orders, but the ad was actually created before the most recent political election.

Audi ‘Daughter’

Another company using this ad space to make a political statement, Audi narrates a father watching his daughter (win) a soapbox derby while contemplating how to tell her that women are paid less than men, regardless of education and skill level. The car company’s endorsement for equal pay touches the hearts of many in the country by showing they support women’s rights.

Bai (Bai Bai)

On a lighter note, Justin Timberlake and Christopher Walken starred in the beverage company Bai’s commercial that was inspired by a famous NSYNC song.  As Walken dramatically recited lyrics from “Bye-Bye-Bye”, Timberlake stares seriously at Walken without delivering a single line of speech. Bai’s use of the iconic song draws a close comparison between the word “bye” in the song, to how Bai is pronounced, which created a memorable connection no one will be able to forget.

Avocados from Mexico

Opening with a scene of a secret society, closely imitating that of the Illuminati, group members discuss the accidental spilling of top-secret information, including the exact number of shades of grey, and how the infamous ‘deflategate’ happened.  But the biggest secret of all…. Avocados have good fats that are healthy for you #AvoSecrets!

T-Mobile’s #UnlimitedMoves

Finally, T-Mobile teams up with Justin Bieber, among other celebrities like Terrell Owens, as they show off the history of Super Bowl dance moves. T-Mobile capitalizes on how celebratory football dancing should not be limited just like cell phone data. While endorsing their T-Mobile One plan with unlimited data, Bieber comments on the recent crackdown on football related celebrations is just as ridiculous as phone companies not giving you unlimited cell phone data.

A PR Pro’s Guide to Real News

I’ve been incredibly lucky to work in media relations for more than 10 years.  That means I’ve worked with hundreds – if not thousands – of reporters, editors, and producers from a wide range of media publications.  Most of them have operated with integrity and a healthy level of skepticism.  Few have been less than scrupulous.  That’s why I’ve been so disturbed by the proliferation of fake news and “alternative facts.”  I won’t lie: I haven’t been immune to clickbait or juicy memes to my embarrassment.  The people creating many of the things Americans have been falsely lead to believe are good at what they do.  As a result, we all must have discipline in consuming and sharing highly credible news sources.

The following list of news sources are those that I recommend because their editorial teams are dedicated to the highest level of journalistic credibility. When they’re wrong, they acknowledge it, take personal responsibility, and issue corrections.  No one is perfect, but we all deserve to know what’s true and what’s not.  They also have internal governance that sets the  standard for sourcing, citations, and investigation.  We must protect these publications by promoting, subscribing to, and donating to them.  It is in our collective best interest that they have access to ask questions to those in power.

This is by no means a holistic list, but if you stick to these news outlets, you’ll get 90 percent of the real news you need to be an informed citizen.  There’s no cable news on the list for a reason.  However, I do highly encourage you to follow local news organizations as they have “boots on the ground” and typically have visual evidence of their stories.  

One important note is that many of these media outlets offer opinion pieces as well as journalism.  It is the reader’s responsibility to know the difference and understand that contributed content is not news.  Some tricks of the trade:

  • Most media outlets will have the word “Opinions” somewhere in the header of the website or the printed page or in the URL. It’s sometime small or hard to find. Look for it.
  • Opinion pieces will sometimes come from “contributors” who are often not journalists. You’ll see this in the byline right next to or under the author’s name.
  • Either the beginning or the end of an article by a contributor will have a one-line bio of the person that indicates her or his profession and background.

With that said, here is the list I recommend along with links to their websites, Facebook pages, and Twitter handles.   

Associated Press 

Bloomberg

National Public Radio

New York Times

Reuters

Wall Street Journal

Washington Post

5 Ways To Keep Productive During the Work Week

As we start the work week, it is easy to feel overwhelmed by the laundry list of things we need to accomplish, meetings we have to attend, or the volume of emails we received over the weekend. When you look at all the things you have to do, the brain has a tendency to freeze, unable to digest the influx of information and properly evaluate. Eventually, it can feel like you are bogged down by your work and as if nothing can be finished on time.

Deep breath: Everything is going to be fine.

At Slice Communications, we have seen a busy week or two (or, you know, a million) and understand the importance of remaining productive in the midst of a heavy workload. It may seem impossible, but we promise it’s not. Here are five tips to keep your work manageable to ensure productivity throughout your week.

Keep Email Under Control

First and absolutely foremost, keep your email under control. It’s simple, but so many forget the necessity of a clean and organized inbox. The first part of any day should be devoted to checking, replying to, and sorting emails received the day before or over the weekend. It may seem like the amount of emails in your inbox is unending, but it’s not. Taking the time to parse through them will save you time in the future. Oh, and if you haven’t already done so, create folders to keep your email organized such as “HR”, “Client Contacts”, or “Staff”.

Set To-Dos

After you are done with your email, make a to-do list for the day. Once you see everything on your plate for the day, it is easier for your brain to digest what you have to do, leading to quicker action. Additionally, you can create a priority list for your to-dos. That way, you can take care of everything that is most pressing — i.e. items with a deadline — and, more importantly, not waste time on something that can be done tomorrow or later in the week, which brings us to…..

Follow Through

Quite frankly, if you are going to make a to-do list, it is important to actually, well, do them. Make sure everything you are writing down on your list is achievable for the day or week and when they are completed, physically cross them off the list. At the end of the day, review what you completed for the day, what is left to be done, and reassign the remaining to-dos to the next day or, if you find that something is not as prudent as you originally thought or simply cannot be done that day, put them on your list for later in the week or coming weeks.

Take Breaks

That’s right, take a break! There is no point in working when your body or mind is utterly exhausted. At that point, you are going to be doing more harm than good. Go for a brief walk around the block, call a friend or loved one for a quick chat, grab a snack to keep you energized — even something as easy as stepping outside for five minutes is enough so you are refreshed and ready to get back to work.

Be Realistic

The most crucial aspect of productivity throughout the work week is having a realistic mindset. When you are curating your to-do lists, remember to be practical so you are not putting more on your plate than you can handle. The biggest issue you want to avoid is spreading yourself thin. When that happens, tasks begin to fall through the cracks and efficiency plummets. Be realistic with yourself and ask questions: Should this task be on the list for today, later in the week, or for the future? Do I have too many things on the list?

Remember: You will get everything done , but it is not a race and it certainly does not help if you are burning yourself out along the way. With these five tips, you will be well on your way to maximum efficiency and dominating the work week.

Six Tips for Announcing a Round of Funding

There is nothing easy about attracting venture capital dollars for most companies. But, let’s say that you’ve made it happen or you’re pretty close. You’ve managed to get the attention of investors. Your pitch – in most cases – went well. You answered all the investors’ questions. You made it through due diligence, including all the financial reviews, budgets and projections. Most importantly, you’ve convinced a group of people you don’t know to believe in your vision and your management team. They’re about to sign the checks, so what now?

Closing a round of investment is one of the most newsworthy things a young, growing company can do. It’s a promotional no-brainer. Unfortunately, too many young companies don’t know how to announce the funding to maximize its public relations and social media value. Here are our six tips to help you make the most out of your VC funding announcement:

1. Know Your Audience – Hopefully you’ve already identified your primary and secondary targeted audiences for your product or service. Those audiences may or may not be the same targets for news about your venture round.

If you are raising another round in the near future, additional investors may be the most important audience for this release. If you’re thinking about a quick exit, consider what potential acquisition partners want to hear. If you’re using the capital to attract top talent, let them know about the opportunity your company provides. If you are looking to ramp up marketing to consumers, consider what you can say in the announcement to get them excited. Whatever group matters most, keep it at the center of your mind as you develop your messages, begin targeting reporters, and start social media outreach.

Do not let your investors determine this for you. If you do, you’ll be serving their audiences instead of yours. Remind them that your growth will ultimately benefit everyone, and releasing this news is an important part of your growth plan.

2. Be Strategic with the Message – Once you have identified your most important audience, make sure your press release includes messages that are just for them. Yes, the news about the investment will get people’s attention, but then you need to decide what you want to tell them about your company once you’ve gotten their eyes and ears. The fact that you got an investment is great for you and for your investors. But what about everyone else? What can you say to get them to take an action that will help you grow in the future? Before you waste your time and money developing a transactional press release with no meat, spend some time thinking about what else you can include to leverage this valuable promotional opportunity.

We once worked with a client that was completely dedicated to customer acquisition when it received its first round of funding. The press release was mostly focused on the features and benefits of the company’s service instead of just the money. We also launched a new website and promotional video concurrently with the announcement. That way, the news was about the service as well as the funding.

With another client, we focused the announcement on its proprietary technology, as well as its recent hiring of top-tier technical talent. It wanted to gain the attention of large corporations for a joint venture, and knew that it would be important to show its technical chops in addition to the momentum that comes with generating investment dollars. We timed the funding press release to be followed by a series of new hire announcements to show that the dollars were being put to good use.

3. Align the Stakeholders – You know your priority audience and you know what you want to tell them. Great! Now you have to get all your partners and investors on the same page and saying the same thing. Often times young companies skip this step. The VC announcement should be your company’s announcement, not the investors’ news.

Put yourself in the driver’s seat by creating a document of talking points that support your key messages. Distribute those talking points along with the draft press release to your investors and partners so they understand what you’re trying to accomplish and what their role is in helping you achieve success. Have a conference call with each person who could potentially speak to the media as part of the effort. Ensure they’re on the same page, and if they’re open to it, do a little role playing with you or a PR professional playing the role of a reporter. Make clear what’s off limits, whether that be the internal workings of the technology, your current revenue numbers, or a potential lawsuit from a competitor. Advanced preparation for potential slips in messaging helps prevent those slips.

Spend some time with your internal team. Set clear direction on what to do if they are contacted by the media or potential partners. Chances are that people you know and they know will come out of the woodwork once the news is out. Prepare them and you’ll benefit from all the opportunities that could come your way.

4. Create the Enabling Infrastructure – Over the years, I’ve seen many companies make the mistake of just putting out a funding press release without thinking through how to make the most of it once it’s been distributed. Your company must have the digital marketing infrastructure in place to support your business goals when the release hits the street.

When a major announcement is made, the first thing that happens is that traffic to the website jumps. So before the release goes out, make sure your website is ready. Your message must be consistent from the release to the homepage. It should be easy to contact you, to learn more about you, to read the original press release, to sign up for a newsletter, and to find your social media channels. If you’re hiring, make sure that’s front and center and that you have software in place to capture and manage recruits. If you’re trying to acquire customers, make sure you have a solid email marketing strategy in place to move them through the sales pipeline. If you have a more complex sale, have your demo ready to view and your marketing automation ready. If you don’t already have optimized social media channels – LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. – spend some time to ensure your message and branding is consistent and you have some community following.

Whatever your goal, do not put the cart before the horse at a critical time like a funding announcement. Most importantly, put data analytics in place so that you can measure the impact of the announcement on your brand awareness, lead generation and recruiting.

5. Develop Reporter Relationships – Reporters love to get news about funding announcements. And they really love to get the news first. When you’re developing your media outreach plan, know that your funding announcement is your first date with reporters. Yes, it would be great if they were to write about you now. But really you want them to continually cover you and your company well into the future. Spend the time to talk with them now. Give them a sense of where your company is going and how you can help each other out. Let them know that you’re in it for the long haul and that you care about a relationship with them. Read up on what they write and mention it to them during the conversation. Ask them what else they’re working on. Whatever you can do to make a good impression and set that second date will pay off for you again and again.

6. Spread the News – News coverage is only as good as the people who see it. It’s true in every situation, but it’s particularly pertinent when you’re making a funding announcement. Just because you’re featured on VentureWire doesn’t mean that every person in your priority targeted audience read it that morning. It’s up to you to spread the news and the media coverage.

Two tools – social media and email marketing – are your best targeted amplifiers. Don’t just put a link to your press release on Twitter, though you should do that with a tagged link so you can track the results it generates. Use your owned media channels thoroughly. Start with community development. Add LinkedIn connections and Twitter followers during the days and weeks leading up to the announcement. Make sure all your old college buddies that could be customers are your friends on Facebook (don’t worry, you can unfollow them so you don’t see their political rants). Consider drafting a personal statement on what the deal means to you, including your key messages, and add it to your blog and LinkedIn Pulse.

We once worked on a personal statement with a CEO client who provided insight into the deal, what it meant to him as the founder, and what his vision for the company was. He talked about the path he traveled, from founding the company to accepting the first investment round. He wrote about his hopes, dreams and plans for the future of the business. These things had no place in a press release, but added to the richness of the story, so we helped him leverage his owned media channels, personal website and LinkedIn Pulse to tell this deeper and more dynamic story.

For email marketing, make sure all your contacts are in one place and that you can send them the announcement without violating SPAM laws and best practices. While you’re doing that, segment them for future use. Make sure you have contact information for your key advisors, supporters and influencers. They will help you spread the word behind your immediate sphere of connections to a whole new group of people that could prove invaluable to your business.

Whatever you do, don’t make the mistake of just putting out a press release. Treat the promotional effort as seriously as the investment itself and you will see returns.

View the article on Forbes.com.

Slice Resolutions

Believe it or not, the end of the year is upon us once again. We know — it goes by quicker and quicker every year. As we turn the page on 2016 and move closer to 2017, Slice has been some much needed time to reflect and, more importantly, look forward to the coming year. To get in the spirit, we asked our staff two questions: What were some of your proudest accomplishments this year and your New Year resolutions for 2017. We had plenty to say, so let’s not waste any more time and get down to it.


Cassandra Bailey, CEO

My resolution is to spend more time writing so I can share the agency’s expertise in PR, SM and email marketing with business owners.

The thing I’m proudest of is selling out Mashable’s Social Media Day in 2016. It felt great to bring together so many people who are passionate about using social media to help businesses grow in the Philadelphia area.


Elysse Ciccone, PR Account Manager

A happy – and recent – accomplishment was making the transition to Slice. Always keep moving forward!

I’m resolving to rack up a few more passport stamps. Havana and London are on deck for 2017!


Jenn McClendon, Business Development Associate

My proudest accomplishment this year was being bold enough to leave Corporate America and take the risk of coming to a small business. It by far has been the best decision that I made this year and in the short timeframe that I’ve been here I feel that I’ve been able to contribute to the company!

I am resolved to brew numerous batches of beer!!

Nick Ricci, Business Development Assistant

The thing I’m most proud about was that Slice was able to bring Social Media Day to the Philadelphia community. It was a blessing to be able to lead the coordination of the event. I met a ton of talented social media professionals and really enjoyed working with our partners who helped make the event a success.

For resolutions… I’m not making any promises but I’d like to participate in the Polar Bear Plunge.

Ethan Willard, Office Manager

My proudest achievement this year was finally having the chance to purchase tickets to the UK, a place I have spent my entire life wanting to go but never being able to — until now.

As far as resolutions, I would like to continue reading more and more. I read more books this year than I have any other year in my life, so I would like to keep that trend going.

Jullieanne Cueto, Public Relations Account Manager

My proudest accomplishment this year would have to be getting a full time position in the city and moving out of my parents house!”

My resolution is to save more money and spend less on things that I don’t necessarily need!

Alyssa Hamel, Social Media Account Manager

My proudest accomplishment this year is surviving my first Flywheel class.

In 2017 I want to travel more!

Darby Rowe, Public Relations Account Manager

My proudest accomplishment this year was exploring how yoga and essential oils can help me align my mind, body, and soul. It’s also a great way to exercise which is fine by me!

In 2017 I want to spend more time outdoors and exploring the wilderness with Rocky, my Shiba Inu. I also want to find the perfect shade of red matte lipstick.


Brian McDonnell, Business Development Sales Associate

This year I am most proud of contributing to the growth of our clients and partners.

My resolution is to be more productive before office hours.

Kelley Galloway, Social Media Account Manager

My New Year’s Resolution is to keep my bedroom clean for 2 consecutive weeks.

My proudest accomplishment from 2016 is that I survived a solo 10 day backpacking trip through Europe!

Jeff Rechler, Public Relations Supervisor

I am proud of Slice for securing coverage for our clients in the New York Times, Fast Company, Forbes, Entrepreneur and other national publications in 2016.

My New Year’s resolution, both personally and professionally, is to read more and write more.


Michael D’Antonio, Director of Client Services

My resolution is to be beat Jeff’s soccer team in the championship game.

The thing I’m proudest of this year is mentoring and supporting the Slice staff in their growth to meet their fullest potential in being true strategists, creative thinkers, and amazing account people.

It is good practice to take some time at the end of every year to think about your accomplishments and what you look forward to achieving. That way, you are not only giving yourself much needed kudos, but you avoid complacency by keeping the future in mind. Reflection and goal setting is important to Slice and we recommend that everyone answers the questions we asked the staff. But don’t think too hard — it’s the holidays, after all.

From us to the rest of you, Happy New Year! See you in 2017!

A Moment of Gratitude from Our CEO

We have begun a practice in our weekly staff meetings of thanking each other for all the ways we have been helped throughout the week. From developing a new media list to optimizing a Facebook ad to washing the dishes, we have recognized the power that comes with acknowledging and showing gratitude towards one another.

This time of year has me thinking about all the people I would like to thank and recognize for their help and support in growing Slice. As I look back on the year, there were huge successes and times of struggle, and throughout them all, there were people who made it all easier.

I have to start by thanking our clients. We would not have the agency without them. Their willingness to trust us with their promotional efforts – their faces to their markets – is taken extremely seriously by our entire team. We are thankful for the times they were willing to try something new or let us push them creatively. We appreciate their feedback and their partnership.

Earlier this year, we hosted Mashable’s Social Media Day in Philadelphia, the largest event of its kind in the U.S. We are extremely grateful to the sponsors, speakers, and attendees who helped us sell out the event and become the #9 trending topic in the country that day. In particular, I would like to recognize our presenting sponsor, Comcast, and our host sponsor, The Franklin Institute, for seeing and supporting our vision for the conference.

A small business like ours requires the support of outside vendors to handle much of the business operations. Our partners, including our accountants, lawyers, brokers, and others, have been generous with their time and expertise. I am particularly thankful for the team at Business Development University that guides and pushes our growth by being more thoughtful with our sales efforts.

This year, I was also lucky enough to be accepted into and attend the WBENC-Tuck executive education program. Spending a week with 50 other female CEOs changed my perspective on many of the ways I operate the business and how I perform as its leader. I am eternally grateful to IBM for sponsoring the program and to Bank of America for providing my scholarship for the week. I also have to acknowledge and appreciate the Tuck faculty, the WBENC staff, and the amazing participants. Slice is much better positioned for additional growth in 2017 thanks to their insight and expertise. Similarly, I would like to thank my other support networks including Entrepreneurs Organization (EO) and the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Alumni Association for continuing to share their knowledge and feedback.

On a personal note, I need to express my gratitude to my friends and family, particularly my husband who lives with me, and by association the business, every day. Many people have said it takes a village to raise a child. The same is true for a small business.

Finally, I would like to publicly acknowledge the incredible group of people I get to work with everyday. They inspire and challenge me. They make me better. And they understand and support how we are going to grow. This company would not be possible without them. Thank you.