Challenge Accepted!

December 28, 2009

HMA’s team is always up for challenge – especially one that involves photos and the holidays, Mr. Chris Brogan!

As you will see from his blog post, author/social media activist Brogan is interested in seeing what really happens during the holidays.

So, take a look at the most recent photos he’s posted here, and then see how ours stack up – how’d we do?

  • As you may know, Abbie S. Fink, HMA’s vice president and general manager is a huge Donny Osmond fan. Co-worker Beth Wilkinson and her clan, the Wilkinson/Sullivan/Nizzolis, were nice enough to surprise her with “The Osmonds – Love Me For a Reason” album as a Hanukkah gift.  Love it!


  • HMA’s senior account exec, Alison Bailin Batz, attempting to get her hubby, Brian, into excessive holiday spirit by forcing reindeer ears on and a gingerbread wreath around his head. Lasted about two minutes – just long enough for Alison’s crafty sister to snap a photo!


  • Scott Hanson, president of HMA Public Relations, hosts a huge Christmas Eve party at his house.  Among his responsibilities is to make sure Santa makes the transition from the sleigh to the neighborhood safely.


  • Living in a small studio apartment, HMA account coordinator Beth Wilkinson didn’t have the space for a Christmas tree but still wanted a place to hang her (few) ornaments.  The solution – a four-foot tall, two-dimensional tree made from magazines she’d read over the past year.  Space, cost-efficient and recyclable to boot!

As a guest blogger for Steve McKee’s, Abbie writes about the nerve of appreciation at a small agency.  Read her post here.

Cheers to Chad!

December 2, 2009

As I am sure most of you have heard, Arizona Republic reporter Chad Graham has been promoted to social media editor, which means he will be focusing on newsroom strategy rather than stories from here on out.

At HMA, we’ve had the pleasure to work with Chad several times since he moved to town, especially when he first joined the Arizona Republic and covered the dearly departed “Biz Buzz” features each day in the Business Section.

So, in honor of all the laughs we’ve had with him on location and all of the fun we had working on stories together, here is a quick roundup of some of our favorite Chad-flavored stories that featured our clients.

Feel free to post links to yours as well!

My personal favorite memory – working with Chad on a story about some of my clients’ New Year’s resolutions and, while interviewing a Subway franchisee about his resolution, learning that Chad was a huge Jared fan. So much so that the next time Jared came to Phoenix, Chad worked with us to get a full-page feature story on his visit.


Happy to Help!

November 23, 2009

Each year the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale hosts a Thanksgiving dinner for the Club kids and their families.  This year, more than 300 people turned out for the festivities, which included a turkey dinner with all the trimmings and great entertainment provided by some of the kids.

Abbie, Scott and Susan joined the nearly 30 other volunteers who came out to help with the event.  All the food was donated and the staff at Scottsdale Healthcare prepared all the food.

A very special Thanksgiving indeed.


October 30, 2009

abbieAlas, no follow from @donnyosmond

Well, my birthday wish/social media experiment did not net out all the results I was hoping for.  My ultimate goal was to create enough buzz on Twitter that Donny would follow me back as a birthday gift.

Through a variety of different tweets, including photos and videos, many of you helped in the process.  But alas, no follow.  My guess, he really isn’t the one managing his Twitter account.  And that to me is where the issue is with many of these celebrity accounts. 

Those of us working in the social media space are regularly telling our clients that they must be transparent if they choose to use social media.  Engage with your followers, it is a great way to add a personality to the brand.  We all have stories where we received a reply from a brand that we had been tweeting about. I was hoping to add the Donny story to my anecdotes about the power of Twitter.

DSC08468So would it have really hurt Donny to follow me and send a quick happy birthday reply?  Of course not.  I’m not expecting to chat with him on a daily basis but if you are going to be in the space than I have an expectation that you are going to participate in it as well.

And speaking of participating, a special shout-out to those of you who joined in the effort. I appreciate it and am happy to return the favor!



















BethburnettOsmonds II








BethA few months back, I wrote a blog post about a letter I had received in the mail from the Screen Actors Guild regarding a commercial they were making using a photo of me from back in my high school days as a cheerleader.  Well, after doing some digging, my friend Carla (who is also in this commercial) found it on YouTube.  Good ol’ YouTube – you can find anything on there!  Even T.G.I. Friday’s commercials. 

Enjoy it here; I’m left of Kayla, who’s in the center of the big group of cheerleaders.

HMA Everywhere this Week!

October 19, 2009

HMA on Space Mtn.It was been quite the week for team HMA. First, we celebrated National Bosses Day this past Monday with a scavenger hunt for the ages. Next, we celebrated Abbie’s birthday Tuesday with a day trip to the happiest place on Earth – Disneyland!

After that was a week filled with media training and social media presentations to a client, S.M.A.C.N.A., and the Andrea Beth Abbie and Rose 002ASU Lodestar Center for Philanthropy & Non-Profit Innovation, followed by one of our staffers falling ill (Beth), one being stuck in Yuma (Scott) and two meeting up with fellow Valley Libras for one heck of a party at the Vig (Abbie & Alison).

3TV Brittney Shipp and Abbie 2But, the real star of the week was the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale’s 6th Annual Uncorked & Unplugged event on Sunday, a casual yet sophisticated night under the stars with great food, great wine and great friends. We spent several morning hours with the great folks at 3TV doing a live remote as the event was set up, and then several evening hours with folks from the local media, marketing and business worlds as the event kicked off.

SBGC_Uncorked08_212All in all, Uncorked & Unplugged was a hit – featuring more than 20 local restaurants, 30 wineries, a martini bar hosted by Blue Martini and a margarita bar hosted by San Felipe’s Cantina. While indulging with both food and beverage, guests also danced the night away with several Scott at Uncorkedpopular local acts including retro ’80s cover band Rock Lobster, DJ William Reed, The Love Me Nots and featured performers from Casino Arizona’s Showstoppers Live!

And, when the evening came to a close, guests Uncorked Unplugged 006were able to take advantage of free cab rides home, courtesy of Hensley & Company and Scottsdale Insurance Company, ensuring all party-goers a safe trip home.

And now it’s time to conquer this week! Make it a great one!

Boston Pops

October 9, 2009

scottI get the chance to help Channel 8 again this Sunday night at seven o’clock. 

I’ll be hosting Eight’s October membership drive.

The program will be “Chris Botti:  Live in Boston.”  I had the opportunity to preview it.

From the opening moments, the trumpeter and his special guests keep the audience riveted.  A once-in-a-lifetime lineup of some of today’s most popular artists, including Sting, Lucia Micarelli, Steven Tyler, John Mayer, Katherine McPhee, Sy Smith, Josh Groban and Yo-Yo-Ma. All give masterful performances at Symphony Hall in Boston with Keith Lockhart conducting the Boston Pops.

Hope to see you on Sunday night – or better yet, I hope you see me on Sunday night.

Find Your Nerve

October 7, 2009

abbieThe economic mess has gone on long enough. We have the power to turn it around. So take a deep breath, grab a daily dose of encouragement here and let’s get back to business.

That’s the opening statement on my friend Steve McKee’s new blog, Find Your Nerve.  The purpose of this new site is to support business leaders who want to move beyond the gloom and doom of the economy and return their companies to the growth path.

Find your Nerve LogoI, for one, say HOORAY! Let’s stop talking and start doing.  And as such, I have agreed to be a guest blogger.   A wide variety of corporate leaders will be contributing their thoughts, ideas and challenges with the ultimate goal of instilling a renewed sense of confidence in the C-suite, remind corporate leaders that we’re all in this together and to speed up the economic recovery.

So bookmark this blog, visit often and I’m confident we’re going to make a difference.

Here’s to a great 4th quarter!

1.  I used to dye my hair purple and pink in college.

2.  My sister Sandy is my best Pepperfriend.

3.  I got my first dog, a poodle named Pepper, for my 5th birthday.

4.  I did my first television interview in 6th grade – we were picketing the elementary school for taking away our graduation dance.

5.  I can read Hebrew – can count to 10 and recite the alphabet.

6.  Played the clarinet all through junior high and high school.

7.  Marched in the Fiesta Bowl Parade in 8th grade. 

8.  Worked for the Fiesta Bowl from 1987-91.

9.  Wrote Harmon Killebrew a fan letter and am still waiting for a reply – same goes for Fran Tarkenton.

10.  Am a distant cousin to Ann Landers and Dear Abby.

11.  I broke my arm playing softball . . . and played the whole game so no one would know.

12.  Was an usher for ASU football in my senior year.

13.  Have the same birthday as twoAbbie and Donna at the Kotel cousins and Marie Osmond.

14.  I went to Israel in February 2008 with my best friend Donna.

15.  I have both an undergrad and master’s degree from the Cronkite School of Journalism at ASU.

16.  I wrote my master’s thesis on soap operas.

17.  I am a huge Guiding Light fan and am devastated that it is going off the air (Sept. 18 is the last day)Abbie and Donny

18.  Have met Donny Osmond four times (first time was at the Soldier of Love album release in 1988). Thanks to the gals in the office I have an original Donny doll, in pristine condition, which he has autographed.  And thanks to Drew and John, an original collector’s porcelain Donny doll.Cruise

19.  Have been on seven cruises.

20.  I make a mean barbeque chicken in my crockpot – and I’m happy to prove it to you.

21.  I go to sporting events – but hardly ever watch ‘em cuz I’m too busy chatting.

22.  I really really really don’t like hot dogs – I know, very un-American.

23.  When I’m not at work I volunteer A LOT – with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale, Scottsdale Leadership, Public Relations Society of America, Phoenix Chapter, Public Relations Society of America Counselors Academy and my homeowners association.

24.  I love rollercoasters

25.  I’ve been to Disneyland more than 25 times (and am hoping I will be there for my birthday on October 13)Disney