Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Oh Yeah - You're Looking at a Retirement Savings Expert Right Here

In the spring of 2012, I joined a rag tag group of people at Financial Engines to kick off their social media efforts.

Because it's heavily regulated - finance and investing - tackling social media was very different from my other clients. Everything we did had to be approved by compliance. Everything - including tweets and retweets. If someone liked out tweet or replied back to us, we couldn't respond because that would need to go through compliance. It was a tall order, but with baby steps, we managed to launch Twitter, LinkedIn and a blog.

Monday, December 1, 2014

How Turning Infographics into Real Time Dynamic Marketing Tools is a Win for Business

As a content provider - I think I must spend at least thirty percent of my life creating content for clients - I have become pretty good at using content as a digital marketing tool. There are so many ways to tell stories these days and it doesn't have to be only via prose.

In fact, when my client at iPass wanted to convey how fast wi-fi is growing around the world, we knew we wanted to do it in a dynamic, exciting way. I believe the actual idea came from Kewal Varia - one of the best PR people I have ever worked with - who imagines this active infographic changing with time (and data).

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Financial Engines Delivers a Social Security Planner Everyone Can Use

I've been working with Financial Engines for a couple years now and one of the bigger projects has been their Social Security Planner. Typically their products are only available to employees whose employer buys the Financial Engines services. But today they launched a product that's available to anyone at no charge!

All you have to do is visit their website and click into the Planner (about halfway down).

You don't have to be retirement age - you can use it to forecast what you might get - and you can also send this to your parents or adults you care about who are closer to retirement age than you are.

The real intent is to help you figure out how much income you will have in retirement. For most people, delaying Social Security is the smartest thing to do financially. That's because you'll actually get more from Social Security in the long run. There are even more opportunities for people who are married.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Hoover Institution Debuts New Website and It's Very Cool

It's been a year since I've blogged which is a bad testament to a good year! It's been busy with lots of great projects that I have neglected to share and so it's time to catch-up. The first one is a biggie!

The Hoover Institution hired WebEnertia to re-do their website. As part of their team (I have worked with them for awhile now - great group), I was responsible for the overall web strategy.

It was a thrilling challenge: we needed to incorporate so much content with established brands and ideally give everyone a voice while making the user experience intuitive for whomever might drop in.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Funkafied Technology Or How the User Experience Dictates Function

I realized the other day, I have no idea where our iPad is.

It’s first generation (damned early adopters) and when we got it, we could barely put it down. It was always on the coffee table ready for game playing, email checking or Googling some weird fact or question we had about something we saw on television.

And then it quietly kind of disappeared. At least that’s what I thought. 

The truth is, it became my daughter’s television. Sure, there’s a rule in our house: no TVs in bedrooms. We have one television in the living room we still watch together (thank goodness since she’s almost 14 and I figured I would have lost this battle long ago). But the iPad snuck in and grabbed the role of bedroom TV because she could stream Netflix - and approved programming without advertising - and I didn’t have a fit. In fact, she would clean her room if she could watch the iPad.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Listen2Youth Brings Silicon Valley Social Media Tips to CALPA

I am a huge fan of California’s state parks.

It’s like our parks are part of my DNA. My mom worked at Henry Cowell, I served on our local Friends of the Santa Cruz State Parks board.

More importantly, as a resident of Santa Cruz County, I have been spoiled by the accessibility of our state parks. Natural Bridges is probably my favorite because I love those Monarch butterflies. I am frequent visitor at Henry Cowell  - we love splashing in the river during the summer and hunting for Banana Slugs in the winter. And Big Basin is one of our favorites places to camp. [Want to find a park near you? Oh yeah, there's an app for that!]

All of this is within 30 minutes of my home.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Advocating for Human Rights In Your Own Backyard

Heidi (left) with her two sons, her daughter and husband Ron.
Listen2Youth is pleased to support the 15th Annual Queer Youth Leadership Awards in Santa Cruz, California on May 12, 2012.

The Queer Youth Leadership Awards recognizes queer youth and allies across Santa Cruz County for being leaders within their community. Being a leader encompasses many attributes and spans across all disciplines and activities. I have the privilege of knowing one of this year’s nominees, Heidi Koronkowski.

Heidi is the mother of a 13-year-old transgender child. In the last few years, I have watched her morph from a private housewife with a rambunctious, sometimes challenging daughter, to an outspoken advocate for human rights as she supported her child’s transition to living as a male. Her unwavering support of her son has taken her down a path she never expected.