How to Effectively Use Social Media During a Crisis

Thursday October 23, 2014
11:30 AM to 1:00 PM CDT
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Sheraton Clayton Plaza Hotel St. Louis
7730 Bonhomme Avenue
St. Louis, MO 63144

We’ve all seen brands and organizations go up in flames online – whether the fault of an errant tweet, a product recall or a single bad customer experience. With the emergence of new communications channels, how do you manage a negative situation that’s unfolding live in the digital space?

Lauren Melcher and Laura Garner from Weber Shandwick will share insights and case studies on how companies can best prepare for managing a reputation crisis. They will showcase key insights from training clients for crisis situations as they unfold on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social media channels.

The speakers will share:

  • How organizations of any size or industry can use social media to develop a speedy, effective response to a crisis
  • Key mistakes to avoid when responding to issues online
  • Crisis and issues management changes over the last five years

Register Now!*

Meeting fees:
$30 – Members
$40 – Non-members
$20 – Volunteers

*No-shows will be billed their registration fee to reflect the per-person meeting cost unless contacting IABC St. Louis to cancel prior to 48 hours before the event.

About the speakers:

Lauren Melcher
Senior Digital Manager
Weber Shandwick

Lauren Melcher is a digital strategist and social crisis preparedness lead for Weber Shandwick. She is the global product manager for Firebell, the agency’s proprietary multimedia crisis simulator, and has produced more than 30 crisis readiness simulations for dozens of international companies in the food, cosmetics, travel, insurance, government, healthcare and banking industries. Melcher is also a lead global resource for drafting issues/crisis response plans, specializing in the integration of digital media best practices with overall strategy and processes.

Melcher spent two years as managing editor of an online magazine startup funded by a Minneapolis nonprofit, and is an active member of the Twin Cities tech startup community. She has written for TECHdotMN, a local startup media outlet, and was the first female anchor for TECHdotMN TV.

She serves on the board of the Minnesota Interactive Marketing Association and speaks nationally about digital strategy, corporate communications team organization and issues/crisis readiness.

Laura Garner
Vice President, Corporate Communications Practice
Weber Shandwick

Laura Garner is vice president, corporate communications at Weber Shandwick’s office in St. Louis, where she works with Anheuser-Busch on corporate communications, including corporate social responsibility and corporate storytelling that highlights the company’s longstanding commitment to its local communities.

Prior to joining Weber Shandwick, Garner:

  • Oversaw marketing and communications for Saint Louis University School of Law
  • Served as director of corporate communications at Anheuser-Busch
  • Worked at FleishmanHillard, where her clients included AT&T and Visa.

Mission to Mars: Siemans’ Out-of-this-World Communications Campaign

Mission to Mars: Siemans’ Out-of-this-World Communications Campaign

Thursday September 25, 2014 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM CDT
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Jim Phelan, Director of Global PR for Siemens’ largest software business, will outline the various elements and challenges associated with managing an award-winning global communications campaign. Jim led a team of communicators in more than 30 countries on five continents to execute a multi-faceted communications program that showcased how Siemens technology helped NASA land the Mars Rover Curiosity on the Red Planet in 2012.Integrating advertising, Web-based external/internal communications, media relations and other elements, the Siemens team worked closely with NASA on the Mars Rover campaign, which earned an IABC Gold Quill Award of Excellence in 2013.Join us on Sept. 25 to learn more about:

  • Communicating successfully to a global audience
  • Launching successful multi-channel communication campaigns
  • Leading international teams
Jim has extensive communications experience, including media relations, internal communications and websites. His background includes positions at EDS Unigraphics, IBM and Boeing. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Missouri-Columbia.Where:
BJC Learning Institute
8300 Eager Road
Second Floor
Brentwood, MO 63144 Meeting fees:
$20 – Members
$40 – Non-members
$20 – Volunteers

Register Now!


High on Communications

COPLet me preface this post by saying I am not aware of any illegal substances being used or shared at the world conference (nor is that the reason for the picture of me with the police officer – more on that later). But the IABC World Conference caused quite a high by providing a rush of synergy and a wealth of information which sparked more ideas than I could ever accomplish before the IABC Conference next year.

While I would love to share my twelve pages of notes with you, I will try to provide you with some of the ideas and presentation highlights.

Happy Employees = Happy Customers: Sure it sounds simple, but it’s not. After hearing a presentation about how only 33% of the US work force is truly engaged at work at any given time, it’s no wonder how we (communicators) are struggling with brand management overall. A positive experience for a customer does more for your brand than any other form of marketing. Likewise a negative experience can damage your brand beyond repair. Internal communications and employee engagement is the front line – all other brand communications is support. Extra training and creating a brand culture will help your employees believe in your brand, and it will show when they engage your customers.

Be Conversational and Clear: Guess what? Customers hate jargon as much as we do! In fact, research has shown that the more jargon and complex terms used the less trust the customers have in you. Customers wonder “why don’t they just explain it to me so I can understand it? What are they hiding?” Customers want to be talked with, to have a conversation, not to be lectured or bombarded. If they don’t understand what you are saying, you are wasting money and time. They won’t feel comfortable asking questions or trying to learn more. They will assume that the material (or product) is relevant to them. Always remember, while certain language and terms may be part of your daily vocabulary, to your customers they are foreign. You need to explain the topic in everyday language and do so in small digestible chunks.

Looks Do Matter: Thanks to the digital age and the iphone, we are becoming more and more visual than ever before. So just as important as what we say, is the way we present it. Photos should be clearly tied in with your content, headline, or theme. If you have to explain why the picture is being used, don’t use it. Concentrate on a single thought or theme that ties the pictures to your content, because you might only have your customer’s attention for a short time. While images are increasingly important, so is the volume of images used and the quality of what you use. You’ve heard it said that “a picture is worth a thousand words,” well maybe today we might say “the right picture or design might get your customer to read a thousand or more words.”

I Like Big “But’s”: I attended a very good session that highlighted different case studies on successful communications strategies. The one item that most of these case studies had in common were big “but’s.” When you are told you can’t do something say, “but… what can we do?” Never look at a “no” as a dead end – review your options, find what can be done, and go from there.

And those are just a few of the highlights! While the conference is a little pricy, I would highly recommend it for professional development. Plus, after the conference, you have access to most of the presentations and contact information to follow up with presenters and to provide an additional communications fix long after the conference high has ended.

I also attended the business meeting for IABC International, representing the IABC St. Louis Chapter. Many changes are taking place at the international level, including the development of a certification program, a new website, and e-book resources. Be sure to watch for news and information on these topics!

So, I’d like to take a minute to thank Concordia Plan Services (my employer) for sending me to the conference, and IABC St. Louis Chapter for sponsoring me to attend additional professional development sessions. There were many great vendors at the convention, and I’ve included a picture of my favorite give away from Igloo.

As promised – an explanation of the picture with the Toronto police officer. They were filming the new Adam Sandler movie near the hotel where the convention was held, and several streets were transformed to resemble New York City. On our way back from the dinner one night, roads had been blocked off for filming, and this friendly officer helped direct me back to the hotel. He also recommended a place to get a good cup of coffee (the topic of illegal substances never came up).

IABC1Christina Knott

IABC St. Louis Chapter Secretary

Communications Specialist – Retirement/Disability, Concordia Plan Services


Interested in joining IABC? Find out about all the benefits and resources our fantastic chapter offers, volunteer on one of our fabulous committees and/or join today!

Does Social Media Really Work? 5 Take-Aways from our June Luncheon

IABC St. Louis’ June luncheon drew professionals from a wide variety of industries and experience levels. One thing everyone had in common was the desire to understand whether Social Media really can make a difference. We’ve been inundated with articles lately proclaiming that social is broken. With titles like “There is no ROI” and “One in five companies say they’re losing money in social,” it’s no wonder people are starting to question its true merit.

But as our guest speaker, Brian Cross, explained, it’s understandable. Brian is managing partner and co-founder of Elasticity, a digital communications firm here in St. Louis. He’s also Executive Director and co-founder of Rally St. Louis. It goes without saying that we were all tuned in for what he had to say about social media.

The truth is there are issues with social: The Community Manager role has changed, there have been reach and engagement issues, ROI is hard to define, and it’s difficult to tie social directly to sales, among other things.  Brian had a great deal of info to share with us in just an hour’s time, so here are the top 5 take aways from our June luncheon:

1. The sales funnel is no longer linear, because the purchase process is no longer a linear one! Rather than an upside down triangle (awareness – familiarity – consideration – purchase – loyalty), social media has changed the look of the funnel. The new sales funnel is filled with twists and turns. The two most important pieces being purchase consideration (word of mouth, peer comments/recommendations and online social behavior) and post-purchase experience (complaint or delight, giving feedback and advocating for a brand or product to those in the consideration phase).

2. The “True” value of a social media community is underestimated. 

If you were to measure these things:

  • Number of customers
  • Number of customers that can be converted
  • Number that can be moved to higher tiers (additional products, more expensive products, higher tiers of service)
  • Length of relationship
  • Typical sale total

You would learn the true LTV, or Lifetime Value.

3. It’s time to challenge the old adage “It’s cheaper to keep current customers than get new ones.” Given a finite budget, most people would split the pie approximately like this:

  • Acquisition     20%
  • Retention       50%
  • Development 30%

But… research shows that Retention numbers are set – there is very little room to move the needle. And while           Development does move the needle, it’s only at small increments. Development efforts are actually more expensive. So Acquisition is the best chance to move the needle. It doesn’t matter what costs more! Would you ask for the cheapest lawyer? The cheapest employees? No. You want the best… The Best VALUE. And that’s Acquisition.

4. Those who think Social doesn’t work are measuring the wrong stuff.  That’s right. Go ahead, read it again… They’re measuring the wrong stuff. What we need to measure is:

  • CLV (Customer Lifetime Value) of social customers
  • NPS (Net Promoter Score) of social customers.  Your NPS = % promoters – % of detractors. The average social media follower has a HIGHER NPS than your average customer. So stop trying to convert the non-believers (ugly ducklings). Just buy more swans!
  • Development opportunities of existing audience
  • Share of SERP (search engine results page) for unbranded buying search strings

5. Utilize the toolsets available:

  • Engagement
  • Reach
  • Sentiment

*And Remember… we’re ultimately measuring the VALUE of the community!

A big Thank You to Brian Cross at Elasticity for these top five – and an entire hour filled with relevant, insightful information. You can follow Brian on Twitter @vanceopel and @goelastic.

Don’t miss another IABC St. Louis luncheon or event! Follow us on Twitter @IABCstl and check our website often for the latest, greatest industry news and events!



The Jailhouse Rocked at the 2014 IABC St. Louis Quill Awards

1192With a fun, slightly raucous new theme, the 2014 IABC St. Louis Quill Awards, presented by Towers Watson, brought with it a wave of new processes, tools and a party that really rocked the jail house.

Nearly 50 glass awards were presented at Jail House Rock: A Celebration of Breakout Communications. In addition to the award presentations, attendees at the annual awards gala rocked out to Elvis Presley and other jail house tunes as they mixed and mingled at Mad Art Gallery, the old third district police station, in Soulard on May 29.

A police sketch artist (caricaturist) was in attendance to document the “offenders.” Elvis himself was in the building and made for some great “selfies” that accompanied a social media contest hosted by Common Ground Public Relations. Speakers included IABC St. Louis President Shelley Lester, IABC St. Louis President-Elect John Twombly as well as Annie Rzepecki of Towers Watson, the 2014 presenting sponsor.1152

Local companies Mercer and Monsanto were also recognized for their participation and recognition in the international Gold Quill competition. Those awards will be granted in Toronto at the IABC World Conference this week.

From the 2013 competition to 2014 the number of St. Louis Quill entries increased 25%. This larger quantity of awards was more easily managed by both entrant and awards committee because of a new online submission and payment process. This same system was also used for the reciprocal judging with other IABC chapters.

Entries were judged on their individual merit using the IABC 7-point scale of excellence, the global standard. Each entry was reviewed and scored by two communications professionals from IABC chapters from around the country. Entries with a score of 6.000 and higher were bestowed “Award of Excellence.” Those with scores between 4.750 and 5.999 were given “Award of Merit.”

Also new to the 2014 IABC St. Louis Quills Awards was the designation “Best in Show.” The top entries—those scored at 6.750 and above, no matter the category—were reviewed by committee. The selected “Best in Show” was based on the entry’s overall creativity, skill and content.

Thank you once again to the 2014 sponsors, without whom the competition and awards event would not have been possible.

Presenting Sponsor:

Premier Sponsor:

Premier Sponsor:

Principal Sponsor: Buck Consultants

Patron Sponsor: Mad Art Gallery

The 2014 “Best in Show” awardee is 2014 Panera Benefits Enrollment Brand by Panera Bread. All of the 2014 winners are listed below.

Awards of Excellence

Brand Introduction/Management

Common Ground Public Relations STLVentureWorks Rebrand

Overall Communication Program

Osborn Barr America’s Farmers

Weber Shandwick Bud Light Hotel Sets Sail for New York City and Super Bowl XLVIII

Social Media

Weber Shandwick A Star is Born: Budweiser’s First Tweet Introduces Baby Clydesdale in Super Bowl XLVII Commercial

Special Events

Common Ground Public Relations Taubman Prestige Grand Opening


Graybar  Graybar: Innovations with Ed Begley, Jr.

Graphic Design

Almanac, Inc. Secret Guide to Children’s Direct Mail Campaign

Graphic Design

Buck Consultants 2014 Panera Benefits Enrollment Brand

Interactive Media

Buck Consultants Brown Shoe Total Rewards Portal

Monsanto Thanksgiving Day: From the Farm to Your Table


Buck Consultants 2013 Wellness Plan Communications

Buck Consultants WellPoint CDHP Mailer


Almanac, Inc. Missouri Foundation for Health: Healthy Schools Healthy Communities Video

Buck Consultants Concordia Plan Services Health Care Reform Microsite Development

Buck Consultants 2014 Ingram Industries Benefits Enrollment Video

Buck Consultants 2014 Panera Benefits Enrollment Video

Reliv International LunaRich “Blue Man” Video

Thompson Coburn LLP Portrait of a Modern Labor Dispute


Plotlines The Water Crisis

Awards of Merit

Electronic and Digital Communication

Thompson Coburn LLP Portrait of a Modern Labor Dispute

Human Resources and Benefit Communication

Buck Consultants 2014 Panera Benefits Enrollment Website

Thompson Coburn LLP Smart Consumer: Investigate Your Options

Internal Communication

BJC HealthCare BJC Wellness Scholarships

Sigma-Aldrich One Company Magazine Refresh

Thompson Coburn LLP Healthy By Design

Overall Communication Program

Concordia Plan Services CRSP Employer Contribution Mailing

Sigma-Aldrich The FUEL Campaign

St. Louis Children’s Hospital The Frontline for Hope

Social Media

Common Ground Public Relations Gateway Arch Experience

Reliv International Reliv Blog Redesign

Special Events

Schumacher Creative Radio Arts Foundation – Saint Louis

Interactive Media

Almanac, Inc. Barnes-Jewish Hospital 2012 Digital Annual Report

Almanac, Inc. Crown Center for Senior Living Website

Almanac, Inc. St. Louis Children’s Hospital 2012 Digital Annual Report

Almanac, Inc. St. Louis County Library 2012 Digital Annual Report

Buck Consultants WellPoint CDHP E-Magazine

Buck Consultants Concordia Plan Services Health Care Reform Microsite Development


Common Ground Public Relations Logan University View Book

Concordia Plan Services Taking Care of Your Total Benefits

Falk Harrison The Jabian Journal – Fall 2013

Graybar Graybar Outlook


Almanac, Inc. St. Louis Children’s Hospital One-On-One Campaign Videos

St. Louis Children’s Hospital What is an Orthotist?


Common Ground Public Relations Bank Think Informed Opinion

Graybar Graybar 2012 Annual Report

Osborn Barr Missouri State Fair 2013 Press Release

Schumacher Creative Press Kit for RAF-STL

Does Social Media Work Anymore?

final Facebook-June-event

Social Media was the darling starlet of the marketing world, but as time and technology move on, people have begun to wonder if the luster has worn off.  CMOs have questioned its role in the marketing mix, ROI calculations still prove to be elusive, audiences continue to shift and the direct connection to incremental sales is just not there in many cases.

Which leads us to ponder…has Social Media lost its way?

Brian Cross from Elasticity and Rally Saint Louis will discuss new ways of looking at Social Media as part of the communications landscape and reset expectations of the medium as a valuable communications tool.  He will also go over new ways of collecting and analyzing data to help provide quantitative results to know that the time and energy put into Social Media are paying off.


Thursday June 26, 2014
11:30 AM - 1:15 PM

Meeting fees:
$30 – Members

$40 – Non-members
$20 – Students

** No-shows will be billed their registration fee to reflect the per-person meeting costs.

Maggiano’s Little Italy#2 The Boulevard Saint Louis

Richmond Heights, MO 63117-1122

11:30 a.m. – Registration and Networking

12-1:30 p.m. – Program

About the Presenter

Brian CrossBrian Cross: Brian is the Co-Founder, Managing Partner and Director of Rocket Science at Elasticity, a modern communications company based in Saint Louis.  Brian is also the co-founder of Rally Saint Louis—a non-profit focused on citizen-led crowdfunding and social sourcing of ideas for a better region.

Prior to his role at Elasticity, Brian was Senior Vice President and Global Practice Group Leader of Fleishman-Hillard’s digital communications practice.  Brian has more than 18 years of experience leading online marketing and outreach strategy, mobile programs and Social Media campaigns for Fortune 500, government, NGO, and NFP organizations.  Projects ranged from being on the team to launch the first iPhone for AT&T to launching the first text messaging campaign on a mobile platform for the United States Department of the Treasury.

He is frequently called upon by the media or conference planners to speak on emerging communications topics, crowdfunding and entrepreneurial development as he is actively engaged in startup factors including market feasibility testing, capital sourcing, vetting of business models as well as creative development of business ideas to help jumpstart the entrepreneurial community in St. Louis.

Mr. Cross holds board positions with EO (Entrepreneurs Organization) and is on the board of trustees for Marketing EDGE–the only national nonprofit of its kind solely committed to acquaint professors and college students with – and to engage and involve them in – the thriving business of marketing.

Branding a Spin Off: How Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals Successfully Branded Itself for an Exciting Future

Thursday, April 24, 2014
11:30 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Maggiano’s Little Italy

Register Here

On July 1, 2013, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals successfully spun off of its former parent company, Covidien. Before Mallinckrodt’s independence could be celebrated, the Corporate Communications team had only 18 months to strategically rebrand the new company for future innovation and growth while honoring its 145-year heritage in St. Louis. Highlights of the presentation include:

  • How market research can provide valuable data to help drive a branding effort
  • What it takes to globally launch a new brand to internal and external audiences
  • Valuable lessons learned by the Mallinckrodt team during the project

About the Presenters

Patrick Hastings: Patrick is the Corporate Brand Manager at Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals and a member of the Corporate Communications team. He oversees global corporate brand management for the Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals brand, including corporate marketing and advertising. His previous experience includes consumer marketing with a new market entrant for Women’s Health under the POISE brand and new product innovation at Kimberly Clark, direct-to-consumer marketing and digital marketing for all orthopedic businesses at DePuy Orthopedics (a Johnson & Johnson Company), Health Management program development at Express Scripts, and market management for Nuclear Medicine products at Mallinckrodt Inc.

Annie Haarmann: Annie is the Manager, Web & Digital Media at Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals and a member of the Corporate Communications team. She oversees internal and external web and digital communications projects, including Her previous experience includes digital and social media strategy for nonprofit, business-to-business and business-to-consumer target audiences. She is a member of IABC, a St. Louis Quill Award recipient (Award of Merit, Writing), a CORO Women in Leadership graduate through FOCUS St. Louis and a St. Louis Business Journal “30 Under 30” award recipient.

Meeting fees:
$30 – Members

$40 – Non-members
$20 – Students

** No-shows will be billed their registration fee to reflect the per-person meeting costs.

Maggiano’s Little Italy#2 The Boulevard Saint Louis

Richmond Heights, MO 63117-1122

11:30 a.m. – Registration and Networking

12-1:30 p.m. – Program

Sharpen Your Pencil: Communication Measurement & Management Seminar

IABC Spring SeminarThursday, March 27, 2014
a.m. – 4:15 p.m.
Frontenac Hilton

Register Here

Communicating without measuring? You’ve been there. Making sense of your social media metrics? You’ve probably done that. Managing content, budgets and communication plans? It’s all of our jobs! Attend this full-day conference to hear our industry’s leading communicators share principles and best practices on communication measurement and management.

IABC St. Louis Spring 2014 Seminar Program

Sessions and presenters will include:

• How Crisis Strategy Strengthens Day-to-Day Reputation Management
  Kim Link, Arch Coal, Inc.

• These Are A Few Of My Favorite… Social Media and Digital Marketing Reports
  Danielle Hohmeier, Atomic dust

• Engaging Employees to DRIVE Doe Run: A Business Strategy Launch Campaign
  Tammy Stankey, The Doe Run Company

• The Lindenwood Case Study: How Communications and Advanced Analytics Improved Its Customer Base
  Dr. Julie Turner, Lindenwood University and Don Bruns, The Survey Institute

• The Evolution of Brand: Mercy’s Experience
  Barb Meyer, Mercy

• Adapting for the Seismic Changes in our Business
  Christopher Barger, Author of “The Social Media Strategist”

Meeting fees:
$50 – Students
$125 – Members
$175 – Non-members

$30 – Breakfast-Only Option (Christopher Barger Keynote)

JOIN AND GO: Plus, if you join IABC in March, you can attend the seminar at the member rate and your application fee will be waived – that’s a savings of $90!

- Simply join at, then register as a member for the Seminar.

** No-shows will be billed their registration fee to reflect the per-person meeting costs.

Frontenac St. Louis Hilton
1335 S Lindbergh Blvd, St Louis, MO 63131

Complimentary parking is provided.

Special Thanks to Our Sponsors:

TSI New Final Logo





IABC February Event: How to Herd Cats, Or, Mastering Team Leadership

Thursday, February 27, 2014
11:30 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Maggiano’s Little Italy

Register Here

So, you’re good at what you do.  And you’ve been rewarded with the opportunity to lead a departmental or cross-functional team to complete a visible project.  Or maybe you’re making the leap to the manager, director or vice president level, with new authority and the expectation of producing results through teams.  The trouble is, most of us don’t get to pick our team members.  We work with whoever is in a given position at the time.  And that doesn’t guarantee teamwork – or success.

High achievers often are rewarded with leadership roles only to find the skills they used to excel on their own aren’t the ones they need to succeed as a team leader.  Understanding your preferred leadership style, and learning to accurately assess others’ preferences in a team context, is key to leading productive teams.  This meeting will help you:

  • Understand the different types of teams,
  • Adjust your leadership style accordingly,
  • Make your team productive, and
  • Deal with common dysfunctions.

There are different types of teams and different types of leadership.  Whatever hand you are dealt, you can make the most of it by understanding team members and dynamics; what you can and can’t influence; and how to encourage productivity and defuse conflict – skills that will make you shine as a team leader.

About Our Speaker

Thomas A. BrowdyOur speaker is Thomas A. Browdy, PhD, a professor and consultant with more than 25 years of experience in project management, organizational behavior, leadership and related topics. He currently is director of the Master of Project Management (MPM) and Graduate Certificate in Project Management programs at Washington University in St. Louis, where he is also an affiliate professor in the School of Engineering and Applied Science.  Dr. Browdy holds a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics, a master’s degree in Information Management, and a doctorate in Organizational Behavior and Psychology.  He has authored two books on project management, and published numerous professional and academic articles.

Meeting fees:
$30 – Members
$40 – Non-members
$20 – Students

** No-shows will be billed their registration fee to reflect the per-person meeting costs.

Maggiano’s Little Italy#2 The Boulevard Saint Louis
Richmond Heights, MO 63117-1122

11:30 a.m. – Registration and Networking
12-1:30 p.m. – Program

IABC January Event with PRSA: Content Creation and the New Communications Model for 2014 and Beyond

Wednesday, January 22, 2014
5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
BJC Learning Institute

Free Parking: In the garage behind the BJC Learning Institute. Take the elevator to the pedestrian bridge and follow the signs.

Register Here

Join PRSA and IABC for our annual joint meeting on January 22nd. The ubiquity of information vying for our attention, and increased accessibility and addictive nature of it via mobile devices, will require big leaps forward in how organizations think about communications and work to break through the clutter and confusion. Dave Collett and Jason Wellcome from Weber Shandwick will discuss how this transformation is taking place – and give some great examples of businesses and organizations that are gaining traction.  They will also call out some new themes and other emerging factors to consider for 2014 and beyond as our communications landscape continues to evolve.


Jason WellcomeJason Wellcome
EVP, General Manager of Mediaco
Weber Shandwick

Jason Wellcome heads up Mediaco, Weber Shandwick’s content creation and distribution unit focused on delivering a comprehensive approach to brand publishing. The new unit builds on the firm’s pioneering work in the space and combines first-rate editorial planning and production, emerging technology and paid media in support of distribution and discovery of content. Today, Mediaco includes 100+ specialists spanning a range of disciplines required to deliver a full service content offer including: brand planners, editors, user experience designers, writers, SEO experts, media planners, producers and more.

Jason also continues to co-lead one of Weber Shandwick’s largest digital teams, a group he founded and helped grow into one of the firm’s thriving digital centers, encompassing digital strategy, experience design, content strategy and orchestration, social campaigns, community management, and more. He has spent more than a decade managing strategic communications, social media campaigns and integrated marketing efforts for Fortune 500 and multinational clients, including PepsiCo, Microsoft, Unilever, Samsung and Verizon Wireless.

Jason previously oversaw the firm’s Digital Entertainment practice, managing clients in the converging world of entertainment and consumer technology. His work spanned the dawn of online music services and the launch of numerous digital media offerings, from audio and video codecs to rights management software and high definition video standards.

With a strong technical acumen and experience exploring new opportunities with the social web, Jason has gained a unique perspective helping clients embrace the virtues of digital storytelling, brand building through engagement and tapping into audience advocacy.

Dave CollettDave Collett
EVP, General Manager
Weber Shandwick

As executive vice president and general manager of the St. Louis office, Dave Collett counsels clients such as Anheuser-Busch InBev, Ameren, FedEx and others on strategic integrated communications – and how content can be used as a catalyst of conversations to engage key constituency groups.

Previously, Dave was a global client relationship leader (CRL) for a major Weber Shandwick account, responsible for setting overarching communications strategy and ensuring the performance of all Weber Shandwick teams and work-streams across more than 40 countries, while serving as a strategic advisor for the company’s communications leadership in its corporate headquarters.

Prior to joining Weber Shandwick in April 2004, Dave served a variety of Fortune 100 accounts during his seven-year tenure at another major agency, ultimately holding the title of vice president. There, he directed major national communications campaigns and became well versed in developing strategies for forging relationships with media, analysts and other influencers at all levels. Dave also brings a wealth of experience in corporate communications, C-suite executive speechwriting, crisis communications, and merger and acquisition communications.

Prior to that, Dave was at the corporate communications department of McDonnell-Douglas, which at the time was one of the nation’s largest defense contractors and is now a part of Boeing. At McDonnell Douglas, Dave specialized in internal communications, product communications, and communications supporting the company’s merger with Boeing.

Dave has written for the Associated Press and Wired Magazine. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Truman State University, with an emphasis in journalism and a minor in English. An avid musician, he is married and has three children.

Students: $25
Members: $35
Non-Members: $45
*Price includes buffet dinner & beer/wine/soda

Chicken Marsala
2nd Entree (Fish, Beef, Vegetarian, Pork)
Green Beans with Garlic Roasted Almonds
Rice Pilaf
Garden Salad
Assorted Dessert