Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Press Kits - Know Your Audience

There has been a lot of talk over the last year about all of the new technologies available to marketing and media folks. Yes, we seem to be headed towards using more and more technology to communicate, but sometimes going 'back to basics' is the best way to get your message across. It all depends on who your audience is.

For example, when I create a press kits for trade shows now, we use the cute little CDs. They hold all of the information I want the media to have yet they are so compact the writer/editor can put them in his or her pocket and take it home without wondering how to lug it on to the plane. They then have all of the latest product and company information at their fingertips when they get back to their office.

However, this past weekend at the Falmouth Road Race, media folks were given the traditional paper press kit folder. You know - when you open the folder there are pockets on both sides filled with informational sheets. The media folks prefer this kit type at the race and wouldn't have it any other way. Why? Again, it's all about knowing the audience.

The press kit at the road race includes sponsor info as well as press releases and fact sheets. Pretty standard stuff - some of which was already emailed or faxed to the correspondents. Yes, faxed -- Again, knowing your audience...assignment editors prefer faxes. Email them until your fingers fall off to no avail, but fax them and you might just get a call!

A bib number list is also included in the race press kit along with biographies of the elite runners and photos of the runners. This is an invaluable tool for the writers and on-air talent to have as they are riding the press truck in front of the men's lead pack. Each writer has the bib number sheet with notations on it, folded in their own special way, that they take from the truck to the press tent after the race and then back to the office that afternoon.

Sure, you could do the press kit on a CD and just print out the bib number sheet, but I'll pretty much guarantee that the CD would not get looked at. This way, they need to open the press kit to get the bib number list and, inevitably, they will flip through the rest of the paper in there catching some of the tidbits you want them to see.

Yes, there will probably be a new technology in the future that will make the bib number list obsolete, but until that time this 'audience' will continue to get the paper press kit. It's what they want and what they need to do their job the most effectively. Ultimately, it's our job to make their job easier and this accomplishes that goal in this setting.

Just a little tidbit for tonight. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Faces in Falmouth

This year's race had the largest number of finishers in race history! 8,256 people finished the race today. Wow! Congratulations one and all!

We've seen some of the folks that make the race happen, but there are thousands more that work so hard to make sure the runners have a fun, safe race. There is no way to take photos of them all and this won't do justice to all of them, but here are just a few faces in the crowd.

Jen, James and Ali (not pictured) have worked hard all summer helping to organize the race.

Betty has been a fixture at this race for longer than I have been coming here. I can't imagine coming to Falmouth and not seeing her.

Co-director Kathy Sherman (second from right) and the team that works tirelessly with her all weekend at the Friday supper and on the ballfield at the finish line.

Mary has been greeting me at 6:30am at the press area for years. She works security for the press tent and then continues to work for the rest of the day at the beaches. I don't know where she gets all the energy.

Tom and Brian survey the finish line and make a plan. They both work all weekend to make sure everything is set up exactly how it needs to be.

Betsy and Alissa (mother & daughter) are the driving forces behind the success of the press tent. Betsy is also in charge of all the volunteers at number pick-up. She's been going and going for days. Husband, Bill, daughter Julie and son-in-law Chris have all been recruited to work during race weekend, too. Alissa is also the artist that created the event poster this year. Another 'family affair'.

Last, but far from least, is Matt Auger. If I had a penny for every time someone walked in the office this weekend saying, "I was told to see Matt" I'd be a rich, rich person! Matt has every single entry at his finger tips and can change incorrect information or make a missing entry happen (not new entries - entries that didn't print correctly or some other technical glitch). He's the guru of the details pre-and post-race (when he's working with the timing folks to get results up and running for everyone to see). Matt is priceless.

Tidbits from Falmouth. Thanks for stopping by.

Phil's Birthday Run

Today was a special day for one runner we know. Phil Smith of Celebration, Florida returns to Falmouth each and every year, usually taking care of every little detail in the press tent. He's done it all and is invaluable. This year the race fell on his birthday and he decided to let us fend for ourselves in the tent and have some fun running the race. Although I don't know his time yet he had a great run along this scenic course.

Happy Birthday, Phil!

Just a birthday tidbit from Falmouth. Thanks for stopping by.

Fabulous in Falmouth!

It was an absolutely perfect day for the 34th Annual Falmouth Road Race this year presented by CIGNA. The weather couldn't have been more perfect - cool, clear and not that windy. I'd guesstimate that is was about 70 degrees and no humidity.

Here are some of the photos from before (Friday morning) and after (this morning) on the ballfield as well as some random shots from the day. Enjoy!

The calm before the storm. Nothing happening on this ballfield at 7am on Friday morning.

This is the same area (from a different angle) at the same time on race morning.

The crowd awaits on the finishing downhill for the raising of the flag

It's such a spectacular sight when it goes up. Gives you goose bumps...

Just the first tidbits from Falmouth. Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Herbie in Falmouth!

A world-class race needs many, many sponsors and supporting companies to make it run as smoothly as it does. This year there will be Volkswagons at the front of the field including the Herbie car!

Capt. John Carroll III may be driving Herbie out on the course tomorrow.

Just a fun tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Runners Everywhere!

This was the scene here in Falmouth this morning right before the Runners' Expo and number pick-up opened for the last day before the Falmouth Road Race presented by CIGNA.

The balloons are up and ready to greet the runners.

The volunteers and exhibitors are putting the finishing touches on the Expo area.

The line of runners went up the hill and out to the parking lot.

Why is this man smiling? Because it's a gorgeous day here and he's third in line to get into the expo!

Just a little tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Families All Around Falmouth

The "Family Affair" doesn't just extend to the road race organizers, it also includes the runners. Many runners will bring their significant others, kids and even siblings to Falmouth after experiencing the fun. For example, past champion Colleen De Reuck has been bringing her husband and daughter to Falmouth for 11 years.

This year we have a new family connection. Multi-time winner Catherine Ndereba has brought her brother, Samuel, to run his first Falmouth Road Race. We all welcome him for his first experience here on Cape Cod!

Sue Smith welcomes old friend Catherine Ndereba and
her brother Samuel to Falmouth on Friday.

Just a little afternoon tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Falmouth - A Family Affair

The Falmouth Road Race is organized by 4 co-directors, John & Lucia Carroll and Rich and Kathy Sherman. They are amazing organizers and have more energy than I-don't-know-what.

Over the years, their children have all become involved in the race and are important parts of the race in many different ways.

Patriotic co-director John Carroll discusses the race with his daughter, Christine Berndt, after the Friday night supper. Christine is doing 'double duty' this weekend. She's not only helping out in the office and put her husband, Mark to work parking cars, she's also Vice President Sales & Customer Relations at CIGNA Healthcare, the presenting sponsor.

Co-Director, Rich Sherman, and his daughter Elizabeth chat about number pick-up before opening on Friday. Elizabeth has been working the race for more years than she can count and is now in charge of the Saturday Expo. Co-director Kathy Sherman was busy all day setting up the Friday supper. We'll get a picture of her later....

Co-director Lucia Carroll is happy to have both of her kids back for the race on the same year. Her daughter Christine is based in Denver while her son, Capt. John Carroll III, is based in Georgia. John has worked in the office many, many summers and now comes in for race weekend, when his schedule allows, and pitches in everywhere.

Neice, Andrea, was too busy running around hauling boxes back and forth from the expo to the office to slow her down for a photo. We'll capture her later....

It's truly a family affair here at Falmouth, which is part of its infinite charm.

Just a morning tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Falmouth Eats

Two stops that are necessities during Falmouth Road Race Weekend are Cape Cod Bagels and The Box Lunch.

The signage needs a little help, but the bagels are just yummy!

Box Lunch has the best wraps around. A must for lunch.

Supper is always whatever you can find as you continue to work. Tonight it was a slice of pizza and homemade Italian cookies. Yea...not bad. The office staff needs the cookies to keep going until just about 1am when the last of today's athletes arrives. They are a hard-working group of people, that's for sure.

Just a yummy tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Falmouth Number Pick-Up

Here's what runners see on the way in to pick up their bib number at Falmouth Academy.

Volunteers wait for the crush of runners to come get their numbers. Saturday there won't be any space at the table - it will be a sea of people!

Each runner gets a race mug, poster and program when they pick up their number. Yes, many volunteers spend hours and hours rolling the posters and putting them in the mugs for the runners.

The color of the mugs are really pretty this year. The photo doesn't do it justice.

This year's poster is my favorite of all time. The painting was done by local artist Alissa Hike Harris, who is a Falmouth resident. I heard one of the elite runners day today, "who hasn't put their feet in the water, at one time or another, after the race." It's a hit!

Here are some runners leaving the gym after getting their numbers. It's such a nice setting over here - so Cape Cod!

More later on athletes and other goings on at the road race office!

Just a little tidbit for this afternoon. Thanks for stopping by.

Welcome to Falmouth, CIGNA!

Falmouth Road Race Finish Line in Falmouth Heights

It's a beautiful morning in Falmouth, Massachusetts and it's time for the 34th running of the Falmouth Road Race presented by CIGNA HealthCare! Cigna is a first year sponsor and they have jumped in everywhere, ready to help in anyway they can. They are a perfect fit for this race because their marketing concepts aren't to tout their insurance programs as much as reaching out to communities to teach about healthy living. What a concept - teach people preventive 'medicine'! Bravo! I wish more companies thought like they do.

The race will be on Sunday, but people are streaming into town ready for a weekend of walking, biking and beaching before tackling the 7-mile race. Throughout the weekend, I'll show you a behind the scenes look at how a world-class race runs. When the runners arrive on the starting line a year of detailed planning has already taken place. That's something most people never see - they just hear the starting gun and head for the finish line. But...let's take a look at how the race, at least race weekend, is organized, who makes it all happen and some of the surrounding atmosphere. There truly is nothing like "Falmouth." I wouldn't be anywhere else this weekend in August.
Just a morning tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Congratulations Dave Perewitz!

Dave Perewitz has won the 2006 Biker Build Off -Sturgis! The voting happened all day yesterday in Sturgis and around 4pm local time, Dave was announced as the winner!
Here's the winning custom motorcycle....(not the best photos but you'll get the idea)

Congratulations to Dave, Susan, Jody, Jesse, Jaren, Kory, Scott and everyone else at Perewitz Cycle Fabrications! Bravo!

Just a fast tidbit for you today. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Travis Pastrana's Double Backflip!

If you haven't seen the X-Games video of Travis Pastrana's double backflip, it's a must see. Yes, I said 'double backflip' -- on a motorcycle. When you click on the video link you'll need to click into the video site and then watch a 30-second commercial (of course), but it is well worth the wait.

I am in complete awe. Way to go Travis!

Then, he came back the next day to win the first-ever X-Games rally - but only because rally legend Colin McRae flipped the car on the final jump right in front of the crowd. He landed on all four wheels and drove to the finish line, just missing the gold. Pastrana's run was a good one, but McRae put on a clinic of how to drive a rally car.

Even Travis was amazed by Colin's run telling the cameras, "Dude, Colin McRae is a god. He rolled the car and I don't think he lost any time. The guy's amazing."

But Colin did lose time during the roll so instead of winning by a second or so, he got the silver medal by fractions of a second. But, that is why you have the event, because anything can happen - and it did. It was certainly a thrill for everyone watching.

X-Games continue today, but I'm not sure anything will be able to top Travis' double backflip. Then again, he's going for 2 more medals so you never know.

Just a little tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.