Crowley Attends GSA Expos at Three North Florida and South Georgia Military Bases



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Every year, Morale, Welfare, and Recreation organization at Submarine Base King’s Bay, Naval Station Mayport, and Naval Air Station Jacksonville host GSA expos and for the fourth consecutive year, Crowley was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to go to all three.

These expos are great, allowing businesses (mostly small) to rent tables and set up banners, goods, information, and giveaways. Employees from each base then come and see what each business does and get free stuff at the same time. Many of the government employees are purchasers and contracting officers of different industries so there is a realistic chance that someone who buys a particular service or product could end up standing in front of a business that sells it.

These expos are great networking events and they allow all of the attendees to show their appreciation for the military (my father works on NAS Jax and even ran into me at the expo!) and small businesses in general. Crowley brought employees from multiple departments including procurement. Those procurement employees walked around and shared information with small businesses to possibly purchase their goods.

While I’m not in procurement, I gladly walked around and shook hands with many people as well. I noted businesses that could possibly subcontract or partner with Crowley on our GSA schedule and I also chatted with companies to just learn about them and their employees at the event. I really think I made some friends these last three days! I love Jacksonville and I am a huge supporter of local Jacksonville businesses, just like Crowley as a whole. It was so much fun meeting members of companies from industries like flooring, safety equipment, office furnishing, environmental solutions, and others.

Another thing I was glad to do was teach the attendees about Crowley. There were so many people who came to our booth and didn’t know we are a Jacksonville-based company. In case you didn’t know, we are and we are very proud of that. There were people who didn’t know we managed and moved containers on giant ships. Most of the attendees didn’t know that we are helping raise the Costa Concordia with Titan Salvage, a company Crowley owns. You will find Crowley at almost every single event that supports contracting and small business because we care. I’m very glad to be part of those efforts.

I am not sure what I am doing here!

I am not sure what I am doing here!

There were over 50 businesses in attendance and the networking was incredible, not only between the government workers and business representatives, but between the businesses as well. There is a lot to learn from business development specialists and sales managers of other companies. I greatly enjoyed talking to employees of CORT, CDW-G, Yeti Coolers, Mohawk Group, and many others. Attending these expos wasn’t just about getting business for Crowley. It was also about learning, sharing, and getting closer to the Jacksonville and government contracting community.

The three bases also provided free breakfast and lunch, complete with potato chips, drinks, and desserts. There was a strong incentive for the government employees to attend and fortunately for the businesses looking to do business with them, those employees came.

As a member of Crowley, I thought the GSA expos were great. I met so many people from both government and industry. Every direction I looked, I could see smiles and handshakes. I really cannot overstate the incredible power of networking events like these. Any event that has government purchasers speaking directly to the people who want to sell to them is an event I support. This is business at work and everyone wins. Thank you to GSA, every participating company, and all three of the military bases for putting on such great events.

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How an Amazon email marketing goof-up lost them a sale



I love Amazon. I think they are the best online retailer on the planet and everyone who knows me well knows that I use Amazon for everything. I will sing their praises until the end of the world.

However, that doesn’t mean that Amazon doesn’t mess up.

I woke up today at 5 a.m. and did my normal routine of checking my emails (and Facebook) in the hopes that it would help me wake up. Amazon sends me emails regularly with different deals or products catered to my interests. I don’t open many of them but I prefer getting them because every now and then, I do get an email for something I want.

Well, that actually happened this morning.

I received an email for “Up to 65% Off Select Kingston Memory Cards and USB Drives.” This was incredibly convenient because my last flash drive (which was also a Kingston, by the way) burned down with my house and I hadn’t bought another yet. There are ways for me to get around using a flash drive so I had been holding off, but 65 percent off the normal price would have been the thing to make me finally buy one.

Amazon email marketing mess up martyfnemec Communication Made Simple

The email did a great job of building a sense of urgency as well. The Kingston flash drive sale was the Amazon “Deal of the Day,” which means that I only had today to buy a flash drive using this deal. This marketing technique was very successful as I immediately clicked the link so I could buy a cheaper Kingston flash drive.

Then, something strange happened.

The “Deal of the Day” was not the Kingston flash drives. I was confused and I stopped for a moment and thought that maybe Amazon messed up and the flash drives were not the “Deal of the Day” but instead part of Amazon’s “Lightning Deals” that are featured on the same page. I clicked through all 37 of them and there was nothing involving a flash drive.

I decided to go back to the email and I saw what had happened. The “Deal of the Day” was for April 15 (yesterday) and I received the email at 3:01 a.m. on April 16. Even if I had opened the email the second I received it, I still couldn’t have bought those flash drives because that day had passed. Even if I lived in California, which is three hours behind Florida, the state I call my home, I STILL COULDN’T HAVE BOUGHT ONE OF THOSE FLASH DRIVES.

Amazon successfully assessed my interest and sent me a relevant email. Their email marketing worked and I was 100 percent ready to make a purchase and their mess-up lost them a sale.

Will this affect my love of Amazon and cause me to stop using them first and foremost over every other online retailer?

Nope. It doesn’t change anything for me. I am disappointed, but the value Amazon brings me far outweighs this rare mistake.

But this does bring to light that every company makes mistakes, even the almighty Amazon. The difference is that Amazon can afford it. Can your business?

Make sure that your email marketing is tested and analyzed deeply. Just like in my case, a lead can be ready to become a customer and a simple mistake can make it never happen. Unlike my case with Amazon, your missed opportunity may not come back and give you another chance.

Do you have an opinion on this subject? I’d love to hear it in the comments.

-Marty F. Nemec

Game of Thrones makes TV watchable again



Game of Thrones

I admit that I’m a tough sell with TV shows. I have probably watched two or three episodes of a hundred shows. I just don’t have time for TV shows that can’t keep my attention. I expect shows to make me interested in the futures of the characters. I expect to laugh or cry (feel like it). I expect to feel emotion.

Three of the only shows I have ever finished and made me satisfied with my decision were Friday Night Lights, Breaking Bad, and Arrested Development. Game of Thrones definitely meets all of my expectations for great shows.

I won’t ruin what happened, but in a roughly four episode span, featuring both the “Red Wedding” and the “Purple Wedding,” this show blew my mind and changed what I thought about TV shows. Game of Thrones will keep you up at night thinking about the show’s events. It will have you talking to coworkers about it.

The one constant complaint I hear is that Game of Thrones is too long. The episodes are sometimes slow and always an hour long. What you don’t realize, though, is that the entire show is a series of build-ups. Each long build-up peaks at a crazy event that leaves you speechless and then the next build-up begins. You have to know these characters. You have to love or hate these characters to truly appreciate what the show has to offer. That is why you have to watch the episodes that aren’t action-packed from start to finish.

I strongly suggest that you get a big bag of popcorn and dedicate a Sunday afternoon to Game of Thrones. After three episodes, you will most likely be as hooked as me (and most of the country). It is an incredible show that will make you feel every emotion known to man. Don’t be that guy (like me) again who starting watching Breaking Bad after it ended and you already knew the ending.

Also, you will come to really appreciate Jack Gleeson’s portrayal of the cowardly, yet sadistic, King Joffrey. What a tough role and Jack nails it every single episode.

-Marty F. Nemec

My life at the moment (03/24/2014)

Many things have happened since my last real post.

I now am a full-time paid Marketing and Communications Intern at Crowley Maritime Corporation. The title is misleading as I actually do an incredibly vast amount of functions. The sect of Crowley I work for is called Crowley Technical Management, and my department primarily deals with business development, mostly through government contracts. At the moment, I mostly help write bids for government contracts, but we are kicking off a marketing campaign to further expand CTM’s online reach so we an secure more contracts. I will be the head of this campaign and will be in charge of the blogging and other social media content creation.

It is a giant opportunity for me and I am very excited to prove my worth so I can have a chance at getting employed here in a permanent position. This company is great and everyone here is incredibly helpful and nice. I know that I am in an environment that will help me be the best I can be. Plus, I can put government contract writing on my resume now.

How cool is that?

Things are going well and I’m sorry for not posting in a long time. How are all of you? Are your careers/lives going the way you want them to be going?

A blog I wrote about the Sonic Redskins’ sign incident for Axia PR.

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Come read it and comment on there if you have an opinion on the matter. Axia and I would really appreciate it. Please look around at the other posts too if you have free time. I am very appreciative of all the support you guys have given me.

The post is here.

-Marty F. Nemec

The PR side of Amazon’s drone unveiling on 60 Minutes

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This is a very interesting article by Axia Public Relations on the PR side of Amazon’s unveiling of the “Amazon Prime Air” drone on 60 Minutes. It was a giant move for both Amazon and 60 Minutes and its timing was perfect. It was done the night before Cyber Monday, which is the biggest day of the year for internet retailers.

Check it out here and write what you think of the article in the comments.

A guest post I wrote about my time interning at Axia Public Relations.

I hope you enjoy it. I’ll have something deeper on here eventually, but it is cool that I got some placement on the actual company website. Let me know what you think. Did your internship experience in public relations or marketing go like mine?

Click here to read the post.

And gosh, do I hate the picture they used of me! Hah.

-Marty F. Nemec

Busy, busy!

I hate to beat a dead horse, but… wait, what? Why is that an expression? That’s horrible!

Anyways, I’ve been very busy lately. I’ve been doing an unpaid internship here at Axia Public Relations for over three months and I’ve been trying to get an entry-level PR or marketing job here in Jacksonville, Fla. I just can’t seem to find one right now, but I am going through all of the job boards every couple days with a magnifying glass (not literally) and I have been applying to things that are relevant to me. Plus, college football season started and I’m probably the biggest fan you’ll ever meet. Being a sportswriter is why I majored in journalism, although that is not my end-goal anymore. Go Buckeyes!

I know I will get my break soon. I’m too smart and I work too hard to not be getting paid. Haha. Other than that attempt at confidence, I also have bills and student loans to pay off. I’m glad I’m in a situation where I can at least get experience, but I am definitely going 100 percent to try to start my career. I will write a few posts soon about the things I’ve learned during this internship.

To those who read this, thank you! How have you been? Any new developments in your life? I hope all of you are doing great!

-Marty F. Nemec

11 Tips to Blog Effectively

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Blogging is as simple as writing what you’re thinking, then hitting publish. Right?

Wrong.

As many of you know, there are tricks in the game of blogging. Some blogs are just better than others. When looking at successful blogs, sometimes it’s hard to tell what they are doing differently than you.

Many people have asked me what I do when I blog. Obviously, my blog posts, like everyone else’s, come from my head and that can’t be replicated. However, there are some simple guidelines I follow without thinking about them. I have decided I would write down 10 things I personally do that I feel makes my blogging better than average (opinion alert). I kept it short and simple, which is a new thing for me. Sorry… or you’re welcome, depending on how you feel about that!

1. Make a blog name that has personality but tells the reader what you will be writing about.

2. Write in a conversational way that is easy for people to understand and delve themselves into, unless the subject calls for more.

3. Do your research on the subject you are writing about. The readers will believe you until you are proven wrong, then credibility becomes an issue.

4. Keep your blog posts on the subject of what their headlines say. You can always make another post if you find yourself drifting into a different subject.

5. Don’t try to sell a product in your blog posts. Your blog post should inform and entertain readers, then they will pursue your products on their own if they deem you worthy.

6. Proofread your post three times before publishing it.

7. Add your call to action at the end of your post. If you want comments, tweets, donations or shares, let the reader know. Some of them will perform the action you want if they liked your post, but don’t seem too needy.

8. Use SEO-friendly keywords in your post. Don’t drown your post in them, but definitely find out which terms can bring search engine users to your blog.

9. Write about issues your readers are interested in. It’s hard to accept, but sometimes your own interests aren’t what your blog followers care about. This is a judgement call.

10. Respond to comments, as well as interaction through other social media platforms that comes from your blog’s influence. The readers took time to respond to you. Respond back.

11. Use pictures. People like pictures and they help break up the massive amount of text in your post.

These tips should help you pinpoint a thing or two in your blogging that you can do better. I’m not perfect, either, and I can definitely work on some of my own tips too.

If you agree with these or have more tips, feel free to tweet me or comment below. I hope these helped in some way!

-Marty F. Nemec