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Posts Tagged ‘Tri-Adathon’

It’s a new day, and we’re feelin’ good


We spent the weekend writing, planning, concepting and designing like mad men, er, women, as part of this year’s Tri-Adathon, a 24-hour creative marathon, that left us feeling happier, not to mention a little more tired than usual when we finally headed home Monday.

Tri-Adathon is the annual opportunity for Milwaukee-area nonprofits to receive some really great pro-bono marketing work from three participating marketing agencies – Catral Doyle Creative Company, Clear Verve (that’s us) and Johnson Direct. We know not all nonprofits can afford to hire an outside agency to do marketing, so we step up to help them out. We all agree it’s important to give back to the community, and this is one of the best ways we can.

We take applications from local organizations, select a number of projects to work on, and then shut down to complete these projects in a 24-hour work marathon. It gives us the opportunity to be good corporate citizens, socially responsible neighbors, meet some really great people, and learn about the many organizations that make our community a better place. It also gives us a chance to do lots of creative thinking, usually the best part of working at an agency and often the part we don’t get enough time to do.

Unfortunately, not everyone can benefit from Tri-Adathon. This year, between the three agencies, 18 organizations were selected. At Clear Verve, we wrote a number of marketing and PR plans, created a media kit, designed several logos, concepted a brochure and annual report and even planned an event and its timeline.

Bottomless cups of coffee, lots a sweet fruit, pizza and packages of Girl Scout cookies (one of the clients we worked for) sustained us. Each agency presented its work to the grateful clients Monday. It was gratifying and fun to present our clients with new perspectives and ideas. I’ve rarely seen such enthusiasm and joy on the faces of clients.

Visit to see a list of the clients that were selected; and, to see some inspiration check out our Facebook page.

Display of finished work

Jackie Costa, the director of content marketing at Clear Verve, works with clients to create and distribute smarter, better marketing communications materials. Listen for her on Twitter @JackieMCosta.

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When you give, you get!


Clear Verve Marketing was recently featured in a Profile in Philanthropy from BizTimes Milwaukee. These profiles, which appeared in the BizTimes Giving Guide, highlight the services of individuals in the Milwaukee area who have made significant contributions to the nonprofit community. Clear Verve, along with Catral Doyle creative and Welke Group, were highlighted for our Tri-Adathon work. You can view our profile, along with profiles of other generous individuals and some deserving nonprofits, online.

If you’re not familiar with Tri-Adathon, it’s a once a year opportunity for Milwaukee-area nonprofits to receive some really great pro-bono marketing work. Each year, we take applications from local organizations, select a number of projects to work on, and then shut down and complete these projects in a 24-hour work marathon. It’s exhausting and fun. It’s also given us the opportunity to meet some really great people and learn a lot about the many organizations that make our community a better place. The 2012 Tri-Adathon will be held in spring. Be sure to watch for our call for entries coming in March or April.

We don’t do Tri-Adathon specifically to get publicity, but it’s nice when that happens. Many thanks to our friend and client, Gary Ross from Community Health Charities of Wisconsin for nominating us. We’re looking forward to another successful creativity marathon this spring.

Here’s a video of our Tri-Adathon experience last year:

Christina Steder is the President of Clear Verve Marketing and works with clients to plan, create and execute marketing campaigns. Follow her on Twitter as @clearverve

Tri-Adathon 2011

Friday, February 25, 2011 — 


Last week, we participated in our annual Tri-Adathon event. Tri-Adathon is a partnership between Catral Doyle creative co., Welke Group, and Clear Verve in which all three agencies shut down for an entire day to provide pro-bono work for Southeastern Wisconsin charities. The result was an amazing assortment of invitations, posters, logos, tag lines, radio spots, and marketing/PR plans. And, although we were EXTREMELY tired after getting only a couple of hours of sleep on Friday morning, it is definitely worth it when we present the work to a group of organizations that do so much good for our community.

At Clear Verve, we selected a lot of marketing plan and PR plan projects and did less design work this year. One comment we kept hearing as we presented our finished work was that it was good for the organizations to get a fresh perspective. We all get into habits, and sometimes it is hard to generate new ideas when you are trying to solve the same problems over and over again. Sometimes, our suggestions seemed pretty simple and we wondered if our ideas would be rejected as “too obvious” when they were presented. Instead, we found that the nonprofit usually had a “V-8″ moment. You know, one of those moments where you realize something and feel like you should have seen it before.

So, how can you avoid this trap? One of the best things to do is get an outside persepective. We know many nonprofits can’t afford to hire an outside agency, even with a nonprofit discount. That’s why we participate in Tri-Adathon. Unfortunately, not everyone can benefit from Tri-Adathon. This year, we received about 120 applications, and selected 32 nonprofits between the three agencies. If your organization can’t afford to hire someone to get an outside perspective, and can’t benefit from Tri-Adathon, here are some ways you can get new ideas:

  • Ask a family member or friend look at your materials. Don’t tell them what you’re trying to communicate. Older kids are great for this.
  • Put together a marketing committee or group of volunteers who can review projects for you
  • Approach a local university and inquire if there is small business/organization resource center, internship program or class that could be approached to provide an outside perspective
  • Ask yourself how every project ties back to your mission
  • Keep things simple.  Don’t try to communicate too much with your copy points and visuals.  You have a few seconds to grab someone’s attention so keeping messages simple will help you get a cross what you need more effectively.

We are working on a video highlighting our Tri-Adathon experience and will share it soon.  Thank you to all involved in this year’s Tri-Adathon!

It’s Tri-Adathon Time Again!


It’s Tri-Adathon time again! A 24-hour pro bono frenzy!

Tri-Adathon is a 24-hour creative marathon which provides pro bono marketing communication services to Southeastern Wisconsin charities. It’s a joint venture between Catral Doyle creative, Clear Verve Marketing, and Welke Group.

During the inaugural Tri-Adathon, the aforementioned agencies completed a total of 37 projects for 22 Milwaukee-area not-for-profits in a 24-hour timeframe. This year, Tri-Adathon begins on the morning of February 17, 2011 and will wrap up just over 24 hours later with the presentation of finished marketing, graphic design, interactive, and public relations programs on February 18.

Tri-Adathon is seeking entries from not-for-profit organizations located in Southeastern Wisconsin that are interested in receiving pro bono marketing support (including PR or interactive services) from one of the participating agencies. Winning not-for-profits will receive solutions to their current marketing and public relations challenges. Potential support includes marketing strategy, graphic design, radio scripting, annual report design, event invitation design, TV strategy/storyboard, Web strategy/home page design, press kits, media plans, or interior design services. The participating agencies will work on individual projects and collaboratively on multi-faceted assignments.

Applications are being accepted until January 7, 2011 at

The 2011 event is the second annual event with 88.9 Radio Milwaukee as a promotional sponsor.