Don’t underestimate the value of cheese

Or in this case, grilled cheese.

The Melt is a new chain of grilled cheese “fast-casual” restaurants.  There is an interesting founder story with Jonathan Kaplan and big-time investors but seriously, the coverage this has been getting over the last few days as they  open their first six locations in the Bay Area is incredible.

There’s coverage everywhere online and print via an AP article, USA Today and many others.  I saw it on my local news last night in Sacramento and we aren’t in the Bay Area market.  According to contact info on the site for TheMelt, the agency is Rivera PR in San Francisco.

Well done Rivera, well done.


Timely Tweet Shows Red Cross Engagement After DC Quake

This afternoon, 8/23/11, a little before 2 p.m. EDY, a 5.9 magnitude earthquake shook the east coast.  Relatively soon after came this tweet from American Red Cross:

It was timely, it added value, pointing to their earthquake preparedness site and it was somewhat personal. Only way to improve it would be to add #DCQuake or #Earthquake hashtag, but I’m going to quibble. Well done, Red Cross, well done.

Play hooky from work on 8/26 and help women’s golf at Sierra College

I have two daughters.  I’ve heard that women’s golf scholarships go unused every year. This might be my only chance at being able to afford college for them. OK, not really, but women’s golf is seriously under-appreciated at colleges.

Here’s a way to support the women’s team at Sierra College that I received this morning from a friend:

Does anyone want to ditch work next Friday, 8/26 and play some golf at the beautiful Whitney Oaks Golf Course?  The Sierra College Women’s Golf team needs your help!  In order to play in the 2011 Big 8 Fall Season funds must be raised by the team itself.  The school does not fund the golf team.  Let’s support this local women’s golf team and sign up to play in the tournament!  It’s only $100 and each participant receives a $25 gift certificate from Paul Martin’s!!!  See enclosed flyer with all the details and below:

Where:  Whitney Oaks Golf Club

When: Friday, August 26th 8:30am

How much:  $100 each

What do you get?  Great course,  golf, drinks, food and of course lots of FUN! Every participant receives a $25 Paul Martin’s gift certificate!

Questions? Contact:  Kim Silva  916-201-7094

Don’t pitch 9/11


It’s starting already.  There are requests on HARO for stories related to the attack on America on September 11, 2001. has a monthlong day-by day of what happened leading up to the attacks that killed thousands.

As I write this I’m sure there are legions of marketers and PR people putting the finish touches on the media pitches for their products and services with a tie-in to that day, to America, to security, to whatever.  Remember when I said don’t pitch the dead? This is the grand-daddy of all of the don’t pitch the dead requests.  If you see a company trying to capitalize on this tragic day call them out using the hashtag #dontpitchthedead.



Reminder – Read Before You Sign

It’s the beginning of the school year here, yes we do start in the second week of August, and this means that there are packets of papers coming home with permission forms and emergency contact information forms and all kinds of things to sign.

Just like last year, there was something I would like everyone to see.

Included in the middle of this form is a blanket release for my kids to be in the media, advertising or other publications for the school.  I checked “no.”  Am I opposed to my kids being in pictures? No way at all.  I’m not crazy about them being in ads, but that’s just because I was in a few as kid and wasn’t crazy about it and some of the kids I knew that were in national commercials ended up a little spun. But the issue here is, there is no way I would grant a release without knowing the specific situation.

Same thing should go for you and for your clients.  Don’t sign blanket releases EVER!  And to my kids’ school district, if you are going to be filming at school, send me a note telling me what is being filmed, why you are doing it, who is doing it and how it will be used. Until then? No, you don’t have my permission

Always double check your travel plans

On Friday I’m heading down to Carlsbad for some work and relaxation.  This sounds pretty easy right?  Well it is since I live in California and have been to Carlsbad many times.  What if you aren’t familiar with the United States and just rely on someone else for your travel plans?

Bojana Jovanovski is the 53rd ranked women’s tennis player in the world.  She was on her way to Carlsbad for the Mercury Insurance Open. The tennis event is in Carlsbad, California. Not, Carlsbad, New Mexico. That complicated things a bit when she landed in New Mexico. Just read the story.