Quinlan & Co Give Back with an App Giveaway

Quinlan App Give Back

By Board Member Elizabeth Chatterton AdLab Co-Chair

It’s no secret that advertising professionals possess valuable skills, talents and connections. To use those aforementioned abilities to wow clients, drive sales, and increase business is a wonderful thing – and when you have the time and occasion to use them to help the community as well, it’s nothing short of incredible.

To celebrate 25 great years as a Buffalo advertising agency, the extremely generous folks at Quinlan & Company [] have decided to give back to their city – and they need you to be involved as well.

With an exceptional “tradigital” advertising team in-house, Quinlan has decided to build a custom app that they will graciously give away to a local nonprofit for FREE.

Yep, that’s right – for FREE.

They know what they want to do, and they have all of the right people to do it –  they just need the right recipient. That’s where you come in.

Nominate your favorite nonprofit organization & help us spread the word!

Take these 3 simple steps and you too can make a BIG difference for a local charity or organization:

  1. Visit
  2. Register online and nominate your favorite nonprofit
  3. Click submit

Once you have your nomination in, make sure to tell your friends!

Nominations will be accepted through October 7th and voting will begin Sunday, October 14th.

For the official rules, just click here

We love to spread the word when our ACB members are doing great things in the community. If you’re a member and would like to share your story on the ACB blog please contact Terri Swiatek at about becoming a guest blogger.


Charlie to Charlie continued…

By Charlie Fashana ACB Club President

Let me preface this by saying I’m honored to have been chosen to lead the Ad Club for the next two years.  My interaction with the people involved – from club and committee members to local businesses and vendors – has been nothing short of fantastic.  And what’s more, the collective talent and passion of the Ad Club board is just phenomenal, and I already know great things will continue to happen.  Special thanks to Charlie Riley for his vote of confidence, and great leadership as Club President.

So a little about me.

I’m a Buffalo guy, born, raised, and schooled in this great city.  I’m an alum of both UB and Canisius.  I’ve traveled enough to know how other cities and even some countries operate, but always find more reasons why it’s better here in Buffalo than anywhere else.  I put my passion for Buffalo above all, but coming in at a very close second is my love for marketing & advertising.  My career has taken me across a number of different business disciplines, but I’ve found my place in the marketing profession.  Thankfully, my current role in Marketing at First Niagara and being active in the Ad Club allow me to indulge in the work I enjoy and support the city I love, every day.

Thoughts on the Ad Club.

As with the city and region in general, there is an exciting buzz around the Ad Club and it’s clear to see there’s energy and enthusiasm heading into this membership year.  For that reason, we’ve decided to add three more board positions to help us capitalize on the momentum.  We’ll look to maintain a full load of programming, while making adjustments to improve the offerings and the experience for everyone involved.  With so much positivity, there isn’t a great need to make drastic changes to the club, but there are some keys I think will help us to grow as a professional organization:

Increase membership and engagement, most notably from the student population.  Believe it or not, there are folks out there that don’t know about the club and everything they can get out of being a member.  Moreover, students, arguably those who need our guidance the most, are in short supply.  We need to increase our touch points and be exceptionally visible in order to cater to the wide range of talent in the Buffalo region, and keep that talent here.

We need to give back.  We have access to the best people in their respective fields.  It’s our responsibility to leverage the knowledge and insights we have at our fingertips to ensure we are helping our members.  Moreover, there is so much noteworthy work being done in the area, by businesses and those of us helping to promote those businesses, I’m hopeful we can use our reach and connectivity to regularly highlight and recognize the hard work being done.  That goes beyond the ADDYs.

Listen and fine-tune.  We’ll continue to be successful if we continue to serve the needs of those who attend our events and support our cause.  I’m hopeful that the relationship the club has with its members will always be two-way.  Please share your thoughts and feedback, and challenge us to continually get better!

Our board has many more strategic goals, and we’re already moving on making these things happen.  Following our two day board retreat in August, we expanded our mission statement to better reflect our dedicated purpose.  You’ll hopefully begin to see us highlighting our local companies, agencies, and colleagues more frequently so please look for our emails, posts, and blogs, and definitely engage with us on them.  And we’re also actively reviewing feedback and brainstorming ideas to ensure the club is accommodating to the large companies and agencies as well as to the freelancer and “marketing departments of one.”

I hope you’ll find us to be open to all ideas, and a leader in the professional community here in Buffalo.  Feel free to send me an email (, find me on LinkedIn, maybe follow @CharlieFlash23 on twitter (although this may not add a ton of value for you), or just say hi at one of our upcoming events.  Looking forward to a great few years!

Go Bills.

Charlie Fashana

AdLab Blog

AdLab: Marketing, Advertising and Public Relations: What’s the difference?

AdLab: Advertising, PR & Marketing

At last night’s AdLab “Advertising, PR and Marketing – what the heck is the difference?” attendees got to reflect upon these areas and listen to the star panel listed below.

Virginia Bates (Partner & Director of Promotion Planning, Eric Mower + Associates), Lisa Hackett (Vice President/Senior Marketing Communications Manager, First Niagara), Katie McKenna (Communications/Public Relations Manager, Tops Markets) and moderating Carolyn Human (Public Relations & Media Relations at Carolyn Human Communications)

The panel discussed the nitty gritty differences between Advertising, PR and Marketing and how to employ each to your benefit. One of our members, Liam O’MaHony, recapped the event perfectly on his blog.

Buffalo Ad Club ~ MarComm Interdisciplinary Panel Summary
By Member Liam O’MaHony @LiamTOMahony

I attended my first Buffalo Ad Club event last night at Templeton Landing near the Naval Park in downtown. It was great to see the waterfront before sunset after seeing brown terrain and whirling dust storms in the desert of the Southeast Valley of Phoenix Metro for the last several years. There were about 52 attendees to observe a three-member panel (Lisa Hackett from First NiagaraKatie McKenna from Tops and Virginia Batesfrom Eric Mower + Associates) discussion moderated by Carolyn Human, who was sharp and maintained an efficient flow for the 90-minute program.

Incoming Ad Club president Charlie Fashana kicked off the event by announcing the upcoming Ad Weekfestivities, including the Aaron Draplin address on October 11 and a presentation on copyright by Jim Cavanaugh on October 12. I served on the Phoenix Ad Club board for two years, so I was curious to learn more about my hometown chapter.

Per my M.O. of recapping professional development programs I attend, a synthesized summary of my takeaway notes from the panel follows:

  1. The primary guiding topic for the panel was “Marketing, Advertising and Public Relations: What’s the difference?” It is apparent that most of us in these ultimately inter-related industries are fairly clear on the accepted definitions and normal functions of each of the these three core areas of practice. Yet, the digital demands of online communications continue to alter the de jure definitions, as illustrated by PRSA’s recent effort to streamline the elevator answer to the commonplace layman query of “What is PR?”
  2. Another fact that many of us have faced is that the pre-digital era of working within strictly silo-enforced roles and functions is mostly an antiquated notion in many sectors. The days of the various in-house disciplines operating on an island or in a regimented assembly line process to producing company collateral, promotions and messaging to stakeholders evaporated with interoffice memos, dial-up and faxing. Many people need to not only be aware of how the other side of the house operate, but also mustdevelop a working knowledge of different services to be versatile and transferable for the benefits of bringing greater value to their organizations and augment their own career progression.
  3. Last summer I attempted to breakdown the alphabet soup of the disciplinary spectrum that I called the MarComm Matrix when speaking with the Arizona State University PRSSA Chapter. Here is that recap.
  4. It is not an excuse to say that you don’t know or aren’t really aware what the other service groups are doing. Find out. Collaborate a little more. Contribute to plans and campaigns earlier where feasible.
  5. With the overlapping and convergence of these disciplines, comes the ongoing territorial battle over which department should manage social media application. Bates noted that the platform space can and must be shared in a fashion that the varied messages and content can occupy different areas of applications. Just as in the editorial and advertising balance that you see in print, a wall, blog, feed, board or channel can effectively accommodate a contest, earned media link and ad message. It comes down to efficient project management and assessing priorities to ensure the strategy, aesthetics and objectives are aligned with the potentially overwhelming content queue.

Check out the rest of the recap on Liam’s blog.


From Charlie to Charlie

Dear Charlie:

Congratulations on the appointment to lead the next era of leadership for the Advertising Club of Buffalo, you are already one step ahead by being born with the greatest name ever. As you usher in a new era of leading the greatest collection of creative and communications folks across Western New York, I figured I would share some advice to help you over the next two years, and maybe reduce some alcohol consumption.

You are embarking into unchartered waters, but its ok, you have a great team behind you. Listen to the uber-talented board of directors (and especially Tina) who over the past few years have doubled programming, increased membership, built up scholarships and more. They are the ones responsible for a vibrant array of events and expand the Club membership past the “big agencies”. They work obnoxiously hard for little recognition and will be your lifeblood. Learn to delegate. Seriously.

You will lead the professional organization that provides the best bang for the buck around, so make sure people know they are part of the American Advertising Federation, a global organization of professional and aspiring communicators and to take advantage of all of these benefits . Remind them that work from Buffalo, yes Buffalo, wins at the national level each year.

As the president, you are probably going to hear about the ADDY Awards: how they aren’t the same, how the categories don’t fit for certain people, that the judging is fixed and Jimmy Hoffa is burned under our secret judging lair (Only 3 out of 4 statements will happen). It’s your job to remind people that creativity can come from everywhere, not just Crowley Webb, The Martin Group or Travers Collins. Remind students that if they want to get a job in the field, walking into an interview with a gold ADDY around a chain on their neck is a better discussion piece than anything else, and remind people that supporting the show by attending, volunteering and most importantly, entering, helps build the collective creativity of the region. Sure, not every category is covered correctly, but remind them they can create their own category and sponsor it (xpedx Best Use of Paper Award anyone?) if they really feel that passionate about it. And finally, remind them if they really think the judging is fixed, volunteer for the day and they will see the difficult decisions judges make to stay true to the craft. It’s as legit as MC Hammer.

You will probably get a lot of emails, calls and comments at events about what should be done to improve the Club or how it used to be operated. These are all great, as it shows people are genuinely interested in seeing the Advertising world prosper and are concerned. Kindly remind them the Club is not only operated by the board, that members can run events and serve on committees, or at least, pay for a student to attend an AdLab. But jot these down and see what ideas are feasible. Great ideas and improvements should come from the membership and that keeps you and the Board on your toes. They are constantly trying to help you improve the Club for the general membership, and fostering that type of involvement is a great thing for an organization like the Ad Club.

Finally, have fun. You are leading a collection of seasoned, mid-level and rookie art directors, marketing managers, social media strategists, copywriters, print producers, photographers, voice-over talent, account executives, business owners, students and who knows what other titles are out there. The Ad Club is a great collection of interesting people you will meet, so get to know the different backgrounds and try to provide a benefit to each of them, they all contribute to the greatness of the WNY creative culture and sometimes all they want to do is attend a happy hour and gripe about bad clients (no one has those!). Provide a nice mix of events and throw a great ADDY party and your two years at the helm will fly by.

Seriously, I hope you enjoy the Board presidency as much as I did. I deeply appreciated all of the support from the board members I was honored to serve with and the relationships made with members have been priceless. It has been great to see different members and prospering new companies and agencies get involved with the Club. I wish you and the rest of the board plenty of luck moving forward, and feel free to discount my membership moving forward for all the savings I created by leaving everything as president Charlie for another two years. Thanks for the opportunity.

Charlie Riley


Crazy. Brave. Unbelievable.

Written by Jordan Hegyi ACB Vice President / Executive Board Member, Owner + Art Director, Riveter Design

“Crazy.” “Brave.” “Unbelievable.” While you may not consider yourself any of those things, those are the things you’ll hear over and over again if you ever decide to go out on your own. You‘re going to work for yourself? You’re not going to go to an office every day and get a regular paycheck? That’s crazy! You’re so brave! It’s unbelievable, congrats!

Yes, abandoning a regular paycheck is all of those things. But here’s the thing; people do it all the time. Whether it’s by choice or by force, people leave their jobs every day and pursue the dream of working for themselves.

That said, being your own boss is a funny thing. In the past three weeks since I’ve been “my own boss,” I’ve learned a few things about that dream. So, let me begin by dispelling a few “being your own boss” myths:

1. I’ll finally make my grand return to the gym! Wrong. I haven’t been to the gym once in the past three weeks. Call me lazy, but I can drink wine and work at the same time. I cannot, however, lift weights and design at the same time.

2. I’ll totally get to sleep in. Hells no, you will not. My dog wakes me up at 5:30am to eat breakfast, and I used to go back to bed after he’s wolfed it down. Not the past three weeks. The past three weeks, the second I wake up my mind is racing and I feel the need to get rolling, to stop wasting daylight. I’m writing this blog post at 11:52pm on a Saturday. And I guarantee you, I’ll be up again with my rooster-dog bright and early tomorrow morning.

3. Working from home is gonna be great. Dude, I’ve only worked from home 3 days in the past 21 (unless you count weekends). I’ve been in and out of agency conference rooms, client offices, and every Buffalo coffee shop for meetings and work sessions. I’ve spent less quality time with my couch than ever before. We actually miss each other.  I’ll let you know if and when this changes.

4. I’m going to make dinner every night; it’s gonna be some real Betty-Crocker-Julia-Child-type-shit up in here. Nope. We just bought stock in Fuji Grill III. We have a permanently reserved table at Wegman’s Market Café. And I’m not positive, but I think my husband had cinnamon sugar toast for dinner on Tuesday night.

5. I’m even going to repaint the trim on the house. Think again, my friend. That long list of little house-errands you were gonna get to in between paying client work? Forget about it. You will have other things to do. Like invoicing (which is totally cool, cuz it means you’re getting’ pay-pa.) Or adding work to your online portfolio. Or writing an estimate (which you’re still figuring out how to do). Or setting up an appointment with your accountant, lawyer, new client or creative partner. But it’s ok, cuz if you’re working, you’re making money. And if you’re making money, maybe you can pay someone else to repaint your kitchen ceiling. (By the way, I’m looking for someone to repaint my kitchen ceiling. If you happen to know a guy, send ‘em my way.)

All that said, on the flipside, here are some truths:

1. It’ll reignite my fire. Yup. True. True. True. I’ve been invigorated by working with old coworkers, new peers, brand new clients, in new and different spaces, on my own time, and at all hours of the night. Plus, there’s no denying the fire that ignites from no longer having the security of a regular paycheck on its way into your bank account. (Let’s be honest.)

2. Working the weekends won’t be so bad when I work for myself. My friend Stephanie told me this. And, amen, sister, it is a fact. I never minded working weekends really, but sometime between my first professional gig and my second, it got a little old. I’m back to working weekends, and I can dig it. Because unlike a salaried gig, it means a bigger paycheck.

3. My new boss will be so awesome. True. Of course.

4. I can take vacation whenever I want! Well—sort of. Yes, I can schedule a trip out of town without worrying about my rapidly dwindling stash of vacation days. I’ve made travel plans and I haven’t had to ask permission, I haven’t had to fill out any paperwork and I haven’t had to calculate my trip around an already paid day off. And it is glorious. But, I do have clients, and I like to be able to say “yes” when they need me. So I guess that means no two-month backpacking tours through the Swiss Alps for me. And there’s a good chance that when I do go on vacation, I just might be taking a little work along for the ride. (Or at least obsessively responding to my emails, because gone are the days of pawning a response off on my AE with an out-of-office email.)

5. Office dogs are the best. Consider it confirmed. He loves everything I do, never tells me to make the logo bigger, and he even encourages me to go out for a breath of fresh air every couple hours. When you find a person who will do all that, you probably just found yourself a new best friend.

Those are all the myths and truths I can share for now. Why? Because I’ve got to get back to work. Have you met my boss? Absolute slave driver.

Blog Board

Welcoming the new board

Last week we announced the new ACB executive board members and newly elected board members. There was a lot of interest in being involved with the board and club this year and a lot of excellent nominees to choose from. With 18 nominees and only 5 open spots it was definitely a tough decision.

New Executive Board
Charles Fashana – Vice President, Marketing Segment Manager, First Niagara Bank – President
Jordan Hegyi – Owner & Art Director, Riveter Design – Vice President
Scott Bartels – Senior Specialist Marketing, HSBC Bank – Treasurer
Kim Pentheros – Senior Art Director, Account One- Secretary

New & Returning Board Members
Jason Yates – Art Director / Digital Developer – Gelia (Running for second term)
Michael Anthony – Associate Professor/ Graphic Design – Daemen College
Elizabeth Chatterton – Copywriter & Social Media Director – KegWorks
Jillian Duff – Junior Copywriter – The Martin Group
Ben Kirst – Digital Communications Manager – The Buffalo News

Thank you to all the nominees for putting your names in the hat and letting us know why you’d like to be involved. Congratulations to those elected, we’re looking forward to a great year with some new faces!

For those not on the board but still interested in being involved we have several committees that could greatly benefit from your skills and expertise. Ideas, events and speakers can come from anyone in our membership and can really come to life when we have volunteers willing to help plan and execute them. Please contact any of the executive board members if you have something you would like to plan and run.

Blog Events

Keep Calm and Play Ball

Buffalo Bisons Stadium
Written by Board Member Megan Wagner, WNED

Nothing says summer like baseball, beers and BBQ. Last Thursday night, members of the Ad Club got just that.  As summer (unfortunately) draws to an end, the Ad Club enjoyed a night out at Coca-Cola Field to watch the Buffalo Bisons battle the visiting Syracuse Chiefs. We were set up with a pretty sweet spread which included beer, wine, wings and a plethora of other munchies.  The weather gods were smiling down on us and despite the loss by the Bisons, everyone had a fantastic time.

Needless to say, it was incredibly refreshing to take a break from hectic work schedules, deadlines and all the other stuff that bogs us down in our professional lives.  Stress proves to have negative effects on work performance and businesses.  According to Forbes, research suggests that many Americans report chronic work-related stress. 41% said they “feel tense or stressed out during the workday,” an uptick from last year’s 36% figure and costs American businesses $300 billion dollars a year.  Ugh.

So obviously, having a few cold ones at a baseball game with good friends is awesome for your health and your career.  Next time you’re feeling stressed out, join us at one of our Ad Club events!  We’re fun, relaxing and know how to have a good time.

What do you do to de-stress?  Let us know by commenting below!

AdVENTising Blog

AdVENTising – We Need a Brochure

AdVENTising – A new series of posts from guest bloggers. The thoughts expressed in this column are the sole opinions of our volunteer guest writers.

We Need a Brochure
Written by member Blair Boone, Ph.D.

Back in the day, clients would come to ad agencies and say, “We need a brochure.”

Some agencies gave their clients a brochure. The good ones asked, “What do you want to accomplish? We’ll tell you if you need a brochure.”

Then the account folks and creative types would develop a strategy and a campaign that might — or might not — include a brochure.

Today, clients come to agencies and say, “We need to be on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.”

You’d think the good ad agencies would say, “Tell us what you want to accomplish and we’ll develop a strategy that includes social media. Maybe we’ll recommend a blog instead of Pinterest.”

But no. Too often, they’re saying, “Oh, sure. Right after we design a nice brochure for you. And produce a TV spot or three.”

Now, I’m not talking about the bad old Web 1.0 days when agencies just took the client’s brochure and put it up on the website. Or slapped up last year’s :30 TV spot. That phenomenon was about agencies not understanding the interactive capability of the new medium of the Internet (yep, it was capitalized back then).

No, I’m talking about agencies today not getting that social media is about (a) content, and (b) engagement. That it’s a process, not a project, a process that relies on having people who can generate engaging content and manage continuous engagement. I’m talking about the mentality that still wants to sneak a brochure in there somewhere. Even though you can’t tweet a brochure. And no one has ever “Liked” a brochure on Facebook.

There’s nothing wrong with a brochure if your client needs one. But who does? Most business is conducted electronically in one form or another. Even restaurants can send a copy of their menu to your smartphone. Do they really need a brochure?

Part of the problem is the agency business model still hasn’t accommodated unpaid media and low-cost production. Under the old model, media commissions and markup on printing and broadcast production were where the money came from. That model’s been dead for a while, yet we still haven’t figured out how to make money selling engagement.

We’d damn well better. If clients have finally gotten over brochures, isn’t it time we did?

Blair Boone, Ph.D. has been writing advertising copy for a long time. Most of it has not appeared in brochures. He is president of OneWriter. You can find him at and @blairboone on Twitter. ©Blair Boone 2012

Blog Board

Year in the life of a first time board member

My first year as an ACB board member is coming to a close. Now our group is looking for some new board members to join in so I though I’d share a little insight into my experience and what it’s really all about.

To be honest I wasn’t really sure about being on the board. I’d never been a board member for anything before, and it sounded like a big commitment, but some friends and colleagues convinced me I should go for it. It would be a good experience and only good could come from it. To my complete surprise I was voted in.

They were right of course. As part of the Digital Communications Committee, with Jason Yates and Lauren Cius, I’ve gotten the chance to assist with the clubs email marketing, website updates and social media presence. There have also been tons of great events I’ve gotten to participate in. But the best part has been all the great people and organizations I’ve gotten to meet and learn more about along the way.

There’s been a lot happening this past year but here’s a quick list of what you could be a part of:

•  Talking to students. Getting the chance to go talk to college students and professors about our field and how it’s changing.

•  Personally meet the speakers we bring in. I got to meet Peter Shankman and Vic Carucci this year.

•  Meeting lots of great local photographers and writers.

•  Visiting board members offices. Once a month we host our monthly board meeting at one of the member’s offices.

•  Chance to work with other local clubs. I’ve gotten the opportunity to work with Buffalo Niagara 360, Social Media Club of Buffalo and Buffalo Niagara Sales and Marketing Executives.

•  Planning current and new events. I learned a lot about event planning this year, what it takes and what the venues in Buffalo NY have to offer.

•  Meeting and working with people from many different industries. Our members come from banks, ad agencies, tech companies, product distributors, broadcast, start-ups and more.

If you have any questions about being on the board feel free to contact me at And if you want to your name in the hat there’s more information on how to apply here.
Tomorrow’s the last day to apply.

AdLab Blog

AdLab: Sports Marketing and Sports Entertainment

AdLab Sport Marketing Panel

There was a lot of great insight looking into the strategy of what it takes to pull off perfect execution in sports marketing.

Here’s a sampling of the key points discussed:

– Fan experience is the top priority for teams. Fans will support a team that genuinely supports its fans.

– Sponsors are now viewed as partners.

– Finding ways to improve the in-game experience is key.

– Gathering feedback whether it is surveys, social media or sitting in the stands. It’s all relevant.

– Team-run media, TV and radio, will continue to be a trend.

– Citizen journalists are welcomed.  They help spread the word.

– Lower tier, sustained sponsorships are better than top tier, one-time deals.

If interested in future AdLab events you can learn more here.

AdLab: Sports Marketing and Sports Entertainment
Today the Advertising Club of Buffalo is offering up a unique sports marketing speaking event through our monthly AdLab at Templeton Landing (on the patio weather permitting). We champion our sports teams, whether they’re up or down, and we love to see them represented in profound, inspiring and creative ways.

If you ever wondered what makes the whole operation work, the strategy behind it and what pulling off perfect execution takes, you won’t want to miss it. This month’s professional panel is sure to provide insight into the hard work that brings sports marketing and entertainment to life. The panel will include Vic Carucci (Cleveland Browns Senior Editor, former Network Senior Columnist) an award-winning writer who has covered the NFL for more than 30 years, Brent Rossi (Buffalo Sabres, Vice President of Brand Strategy and Marketing) and John Cimperman (CENERGY Activating Brands, Principal) with the conversation moderated by WGR550 morning show host Jeremy White (Entercom Communications, Talk Show Host).

Attendees will learn just what it takes to be successful in the sports ad business and the opportunities that exist for brands, products and services. The audience will get to hear the panelist discuss a diverse range of sports marketing channels such as sponsorship, corporate events and boxes, licensed merchandise, endorsements, broadcast, ground/clothing/equipment advertising, in-game activation, as well have the opportunity to ask questions on the topics.

Sports Marketing and Sports Entertainment: The Real Play Happens Off the Field
With Special Guest Vic Carucci

July 17 | Templeton Landing on the patio (weather permitting)
2 Templeton Terrace, Buffalo
Cash Bar & Hors D’oeuvres @ 5:15 p.m. | Presentation @ 6 p.m.

Pay Ahead Online: Student Members $5  |  Members $10  |  Non-Members $25
Pay at the Door: Add $5 

More details and tickets can be purchased here.