We're Making News
Exciting new services. Awards and recognitions. New clients, business partners and employees. You'll find details on those topics and many others here on our News page. To access our press releases, just click on the links below.
The d2i show reel highlights quick samples of our branding, advertising and design agency's video work, as well as their websites, graphics, packaging, outdoor advertising, and even branded closed-circuit television programming.
Look for more highlights at design2influence.com, or let's talk: 419/724-9000.
Our humorous approach to marketing has been honored once again.
The judges at the 2020 MarCom Awards presented us with the following:
- A Platinum Award for “Hold It,” Humor On Hold created by BusinessVoice for Lakeland Auto & Marine.
- A Platinum Award for “Creative Inspiration,” a video produced by MadAveGroup for the 2020 Addy Awards ceremony.
- An Honorable Mention for “Jack,” Humor On Hold created by BusinessVoice for Binkelman.
“Humor can be so effective at attracting attention and drawing people into the message,” said Scott Greggory, our Chief Creative Officer. “We look at humor as a way to give to the audience, rather than taking from them.” (Read more about that philosophy here.)
"Humor is a tool you can use to surprise and delight your customers," said Scott Greggory, our Chief Creative Officer. "It can be especially effective when it's unexpected, like it is in the on hold environment and many other customer touchpoints, from website copy and direct mail to packaging and corporate video."
And when mixed with information that serves a real need, humor can attract and maintain an audience's attention longer and create memorable brand impressions.
Our unique work for Lakeland Auto and Marine called “Previously” was acknowledged with a Gold Award. "All Roads," an On Hold Marketing production we created for Binkelman, won a Silver Award. You can hear both winners in the videos below.
The Communicator Awards is a leading international awards program that recognizes big ideas in marketing and communications. The show is judged and overseen by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, an invitation-only organization of leading professionals from various forms of traditional and interactive media. The current membership is a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising and marketing ﬁrms, including GE Digital, Republica, Tinder, PureMatter, Tool of North America, Fast Company, Territory Studios and others.
On Sunday, March 22nd, Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton issued a “Stay at Home” directive for all Ohio residents, ordering that non-essential businesses cease all but minimum basic operations.
With help from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Director Acton identified those essential businesses, as well as supporting companies.
Since MadAveGroup provides essential communication and media services, we are considered an Essential Business and will continue to operate at full capacity.
We also support essential businesses, such as community-based government operations and those in the healthcare, finance, food, production industries, and other essential fields.
While most of our agency’s employees will be working from home, our offices will remain open to conduct services that cannot be fulfilled remotely. Feel free to contact us as you always have.
Of course, health and safety is paramount. So, we will continue to take every precaution to keep our team members and their families safe while we work to fulfill your marketing and communication needs.
We’ve been creating video, audio and digital content for many of our clients so they can share their response to the COVID-19 crisis. We’ve also prepared several blog posts with tips on how you can adjust your marketing strategies and content for this unique environment. Here are the links:
• Prepare Now for the Post-Pandemic World
• Think Strategically About Your Response to Coronavirus
• How to Update Your Digital Marketing in Response to COVID-19
• Can You See an Opportunity?
We can provide the strategic guidance and tactical execution to help you through this crisis and then emerge even stronger when the outbreak subsides.
For 30 years, we’ve been working to help our clients grow. We have no plans to stop now.
Jerry Brown, Founder & CEO
MadAveGroup was chosen as a Top Workplace based on responses to an employee survey conducted by Energage. They study successful organizations and apply the findings to their Intentional Culture Platform to help other companies improve.
And culture is a subject that MadAveGroup founder and CEO Jerry Brown takes seriously. “Most of us spend more time with our workmates than we do with our families,” he said. “So, it’s imperative that we do all we can to make sure that time is enjoyable and rewarding.”
One of the aspects of MadAveGroup’s culture that many staff members enjoy is the openness and authenticity. “It’s honest and direct, and yes, it’s politically incorrect sometimes,” said Brown, “but everyone is free to express themselves without having to worry about the consequences of offending someone.”
We also earned one of seven special awards. We were singled out for "Superior Appreciation" since so many of our team members wrote that they feel appreciated at work.
According to the Energage website, “Creating a top workplace is about more than offering great benefits and vacation time. It’s about organizational health. Employees want to align with the company’s vision, be challenged by a high-performance culture, and feel that they are valued and that their voices are heard.”
“At MadAveGroup, our employees come first, their family comes second, and work comes third,” said Brown. “We also work to ensure that people are in the right roles by matching both their technical skill sets and personality propensities with their job.”
Brown also stressed that “we train heavily, provide the tools and direction, and then give our people the freedom to do the work as they see fit.”
And while we work hard, we play hard, too. MadAveGroup employees can take advantage of the annual President’s Club vacation, our in-house Social Club, and many events, including the MadAveGroup Olympics, quarterly fitness days, the Downtown Toledo scavenger hunt, the Chili Cook-Off and others.
Roiann Gunnells died Monday, January 20th.
She was our Fulfillment Coordinator from the fall of 2013 until December 2019 when cancer started to get the best of her.
“When I would make client calls, Roiann would sit next to me and ask if I needed anything,” remembered Courtney Buczkowski, our Service and Production Coordinator. “Or she would tell me to give her some of my work to do because she wanted to help me out. She didn’t ask if she could help; she told me she was going to.”
That's how Roiann was. “She always put aside what she was doing if anyone needed a hand,” said BusinessVoice Director Steve Evert. “Roiann was always a team player and willing to help anywhere she could, even while she was sick,” said Accounting Associate Cheri Stewart.
Roiann struggled with her illness for several years, yet her sass and resilience still came shining through. “Once I told Roiann I was having a bad day,” recalled Cheri. “She looked at me and, in her typical Roiann tone, said 'just because you're having a bad day doesn’t mean it's okay to be a jerk to people.' It was the best advice I ever got, and now I smile more every day because of her.”
Nikki Brown is the Director of the MadAveCollective. She knew Roiann long before they worked together at MadAveGroup. “After 20 years of friendship, I have more than a few stories about her. I'll miss hearing her answer the front desk phone and helping callers who just couldn’t get her name right. I’d hear her say, 'It's Roiann. ROI-ANN. No, ROOOIIIII-ANNN.' That always cracked me up.”
“Roiann would bring me lunch sometimes,” said Courtney. “She'd bring in meatloaf when she made it at home because she knew it's my favorite. And hers was the best. I also made her write down her sloppy Joe recipe. I still keep it in my wallet.”
“She always wanted the work done right,” said Fulfillment Manager Susan Harris, yet “I'll miss her laugh and her sarcastic sense of humor the most.”
“She was outgoing; always the life of the party,” according to Cheri.
Courtney said, “Roiann would sing along with the songs that came on the overhead [music system], especially 'Diamonds' by Rhianna. She would sing it obnoxiously, and then we'd just 'shine bright like a diamond' for the rest of the day. Oh, and whenever 'You Raise Me Up' by Josh Groban played she would intercom Jess down the hall and let her know it was on. She knew Jess doesn't like the song, so Roiann called her just to kind of torture her about it. She thought it was funny.” (It was.)
“I'll miss our daily lunch conversations, her hugs after work, and the light that beamed from her beautiful soul,” said Cheri. “I loved her so much.”
“I could go on and on about her, but I think my eyes may float out of my head,” said Courtney. “I miss her already.”
Roiann was just 48 years old.
Portions of a video we produced for Toledo Public Schools have been incorporated into another video that's part of the Robert F. Kennedy / Discovery Education compilation called "Speak Truth To Power - Master Class Series."
"TPS asked us to create a documentary about the Ohio Teacher of the Year, Mona Al Hayani," said Michael Seay, Director of our branding, advertising and design agency d2i. "Mona is also part of the RFK Human Rights group. She was honored by the organization for her focus on human trafficking after she created a curriculum on the subject to educate both teachers and students."
Click here to access the RFK video. After a quick scroll, look for the title "Speak Truth to Power's Cross-Curricular Ties" and click "View Video."
The list of the 2019 MarCom Award winners includes national brands like Nationwide, AARP, Cisco, Dell, Fender and Morgan Stanley. And once again, MadAveGroup is on that list, too.
Platinum Award: Lakeland Auto & Marine - “Previously”
Platinum Award: Binkelman - “Time Stands Still”
Gold Award: Binkelman - “All Roads”
Honorable Mention: Med-Line - HIPPA-tastic”
On its website, the MarCom Awards is described as “an international creative competition that recognizes outstanding achievement by marketing and communication professionals. Entries come from corporate marketing and communication departments, advertising agencies, public relations firms, design shops, production companies and freelancers.”
Entrants range from individual communicators to media conglomerates and Fortune 500 companies, and come from throughout the United States, Canada and dozens of other countries.
MarCom Award judges reward those entries that “exceed a high standard of excellence and serve as a benchmark for the industry.”
On May 14, 2019, the Toledo City Council acknowledged MadAveGroup for our 30 years in business. Representing our agency at the ceremony were Jerry Brown (fourth from left), Valerie Likens and Scott Greggory.
Councilman Tom Waniewski (third from left) sponsored the following resolution:
Toledo City Council Resolution Recognizing MadAveGroup
WHEREAS, MadAveGroup has been a member of the Toledo business community for 30 years, hiring and developing local talent, serving local companies, as well as national and internal brands, and sustaining partnerships around the world; and
WHEREAS, the MadAveGroup agency BusinessVoice was a pioneer in the On Hold Marketing industry, leading with fresh approaches to branding, revenue models, delivery systems, marketing content, and account management, and today is the Caller Experience Marketing agency most awarded for creative excellence; and
WHEREAS, MadAveGroup has prioritized building long-term, mutually beneficial relationships as proven by its service to more than 500 clients throughout the world, 100 of which have been with the agency for 20 years or longer; and
WHEREAS, MadAveGroup, through its agency MadAveCollective, is committed to helping area non-profit organizations focus and share their messages for the benefit of those in need; and
WHEREAS, the impressions made by the work of the MadAveGroup agencies - BusinessVoice, SensoryMax, MadAveCollective, MadAve Marketing Management, and design2influence - affect the senses of tens of millions of people every day.
NOW THEREFORE, be it resolved by the Council of the City of Toledo that we recognize MadAveGroup.
Humor On Hold is a specialty of BusinessVoice, our Caller Experience Marketing agency. And, once again, their humorous approach to communicating with callers on hold has earned acclaim from an international awards show.
The BusinessVoice team won two trophies from the 2019 Communicator Awards. The On Hold Marketing we created for International Translating Company called “Take a Bath” earned a Gold Award, while the production for Lakeland Auto & Marine called “Just West of France” won a Silver Award. Chief Creative Officer Scott Greggory wrote and served as the voice talent for both productions.
The Communicator Awards has recognized big ideas in marketing and communications for 25 years. More than 6,000 companies and agencies enter annually, making it one of the world’s largest creative competitions.
You can listen to the winning work in the videos below.