TAG Wins Gold at Annual Service Industry Advertising Awards in NYC

TAG Wins Gold at Annual Service Industry Advertising Awards in NYC

SIAA is the only advertising awards program that specifically recognizes the achievements of the service industry. SIAA has recognized the creativity and communication accomplishments of several TAG client work submissions.

TAG was presented GOLD awards for:SJ Smith

TAG was presented SILVER awards for:MA SM


TAG was established over 25 years ago with a firm foundation in broadcast media and has evolved substantially during this time to meet the many media and marketing /communications solutions clients deserve. Evolutionary and responsive, TAG’s team is based upon the ability to adapt, move quickly and effectively. More than anything else, the TAG Team is a group of people who like long term relationships resulting in deeply, ridiculously involved partnerships with our client and their success. For more information at TAG, our team and what
we do best, visit www.tagteam.agency

TAG Announces Staff Promotions As It Enters 26 Years in Business

Michael Vondran, CEO of TAG has announced the following staff promotions within the TAG executive team effective January 1, 2016.

Don_Mug_400_400_80_int_sDon Farber to Chief Creative and Digital Officer. Don has been serving as TAG Executive VP for the past two years. In his newly expanded role Don will drive all creative and digital services of the firm. “Don has been an outstanding leader as Executive Vice President, he has built a great team and is now ready to evolve the services and vision for TAG’s creative and digital teams. We look forward to great things with Don in the lead,” said Vondran.

“The world for our clients and ourselves continues to evolve with digital communications driving brand and sales, I’m confident Don will continue to enable TAG’s growth as the digital communications leader in the region,” said Randy (RJ) Jacobs, President and Chief Strategy Officer (CSO).

Natalie Johansen-Murray to Executive Vice President/Strategy. Natalie has been serving as VP of Natalie MurrayClient Strategy and Experience for the past two years. In her new role she will continue to provide leadership and business development assistance to the TAG account management team while also growing the strategic planning, research and Brand Summit products within the firm. “Natalie’s driving focus has been to build the best possible client experience when working with TAG, this will continue and expand with focus on emerging and evolving service lines,” according to Vondran.

“TAG is a team of enthusiastic and intense members, Natalie’s leadership will continue to strengthen our position as the regional leader that Builds Brands,” said Jacobs.

Kathleen Herber to Vice President / Tri States Market. Kathleen has been serving as Market Kathleen HerberDirector for the past two years growing and managing account relationships from the firm’s office located in Dubuque, Iowa. “Kathleen has been a tremendous addition to our TAG team, her focus on client development has been instrumental in our regional growth. Her new role will only amplify and enhance our efforts in service to TAG clients in the region,” stated Vondran.

“TAG’s expansion into the Tri-State region has been an exciting journey, Kathleen’s skills and client focus will only enhance the growth of our team to provide valued services to our client partners in the region,” declared Jacobs.

Did Truckers Create an Early Form of Social Media?

If you’ve ever scanned CB radio channels while on the road or your favorite song is “Convoy,” you’re familiar with trucker 10-code. It’s a system truckers use to communicate universally with one another while on the road. While the most familiar code to popular culture is the iconic “10-4” response used to indicate “okay” or “understood,” trucker code goes beyond the basics to create a meaningful form of social communication.

The 10-codes have been in use since the 1930s, when police radio channels had the need for shorter transmissions when they communicated remotely. In 1937, Charlie Hopper, the communications director for the Illinois State Police, invented a code that kept a consistent first syllable (10) since radios took half a second to reach full power. Keeping the first syllable the same gave time for the radio to fire up when officers forgot to pause before speaking. It wasn’t long before truckers across the country adopted the same code to communicate with each other while on journeys alone.

In a sense, these 10-codes were an early form of social media. They were created as a way of social communication within a niche of people. Just as our posts on Facebook and Twitter are branded by hashtags to aggregate information, the 10-codes were a system familiar to users across the country in an advancing form of media—radio.

For developing social media, we salute the Illinois State Police for the creation of the 10-code, and tip our hats to the truckers across the country that still use the 10-code system for social interaction.

10-24 (assignment complete)!

TAG Communications Expands Dubuque Regional Office



Mike Vondran, President/CEO
TAG Communications, Inc.
(563) 355-2200

TAG Communications is pleased to announce the appointment of Kathleen Herber as our new Dubuque Market Director.

“Kathleen will be a tremendous leader for our Dubuque office. Her background and skill set will serve existing TAG clients well and also help in growing new business,” said Mike Vondran, President/CEO of TAG. “TAG is committed to providing solid communications leadership in this growing region, Kathleen will be a great business community partner.”

Kathleen joins TAG after a decade in the publishing industry where she was responsible for business development and account management.

Kathleen and her family reside in Dubuque; her business email address is kathleenh@tagmarcom.com.

TAG Communications is a full service marketing services provider serving businesses in nearly every industry. Since its founding in 1990, the company has specialized in strategic analysis and creative solutions that achieve results via the staff’s creative, responsive and cost-effective service to their clients throughout the nation. TAG Healthcare Marketing is a division of TAG Communications, Inc. For more information, visit http://www.tagmarcom.com/


Relieve Marketing Anxiety

I was having lunch the other day and the table got into a conversation about managing “digital.” The truth is, it dominates almost every conversation that I have with folks who have an interest in advertising. Like most of these conversations, you could say the theme quickly focused on the way digital “changes everything.” It’s an easy conclusion and, to a great extent, only a slight exaggeration. I won’t hesitate to say that it has had a greater impact on marketing communication than any else I’ve experienced.

While we’re not anywhere near the end of either development or understanding, I’ll also say that it seems that we’re collectively moving toward some understanding of the role it plays in defining every brand. I think that’s why the comment from that conversation that stuck with me had to do with the basic communication skills at the center of all successful creative. Someone tossed off the phrase “all that old marketing voodoo” deep within a comment praising the wonders of new media. They seemed to be trying to make the point that everything new rendered everything else “old” and, thankfully, irrelevant.

I think the sense of relief in his voice revealed many great truths about my chosen profession. To many, marketing seems like voodoo because it’s difficult to understand. Communication between humans always is. There’s a very good reason that Dale Carnegie’s “How To Win Friends And Influence People” never goes out of print.

I get very excited about the changes I’m seeing as a result of all things digital. It’s allowed me to add some incredibly bright new people to our team and do some incredible things for our clients. And I think that keeping an eye on the science behind effective communication along with artful persuasion makes it all just that much better. There’s no voodoo about it.

Still, the sentiment is understandable. Advertisers have always wanted the medium to be the message. That’s why you’ll so often hear a business owner or manager say, “I’ve tried it and [media choice here] just doesn’t work for me.” It’s a whole lot easier to give credit or blame to the messenger than it is to own and understand the role of the message. The simple fact is that, if it is able to pass in front of eyes and ears, all media works. It just does it in manifold and mysterious ways.

It turns out that the best way to relieve marketing anxiety once and for all is still pretty much the same. You just have to find a way to embrace the new while honoring the wisdom in what came before. Start by honoring what you know. Then, make it smarter by letting a skilled, objective person chime in. Highlight the things that make you different in a positive, winning way. Do some work to learn about the mind of your market. Finally, use everything you’ve learned to figure out what will make that market like you, engage and buy. Today’s tools may be a lot better, but the basic process is still a winner.

Mike Vondran, CEO/President of TAG Communications

Willing success for TAG and our clients


Our actions follow our beliefs. That’s what came to mind when I spent last weekend focusing on projections for the remainder of 2012, and the first quarter of 2013.

During this recession, TAG Communications has grown its book of business but, more importantly, we’ve grown as a partner to our clients.

We’ve faced more challenges in this difficult economic climate than ever before. Our clients have survived – many have even thrived – during these difficult times. Why do some companies make it while others seem to just disappear?

There are many reasons, but strong relationships with reliable partners are the first that come to mind. Challenging economies can either destroy a business relationship or make it stronger than ever. In a majority of instances, our clients have grown to rely more heavily on our expertise in communications and and our relationships have grown deeper.

One of the things we’ve always talked about at TAG is that our success as an organization is directly tied to the success of our clients. Our future depends on creating winning situations for our customers. We must work each day, focused on performing at a level of excellence. As a result, we don’t bat a thousand, but we are scoring every day.

There are many ways to compare marketing agencies/advertisings agencies – awards for creative, billings, geographic service areas, number of accounts – but if TAG Communications was compared based on the rate of client success, I believe we’d come out at the top of anyone’s list.

I enjoy the fact that clients are frequently surprised by how much the TAG team cares about their success. Each team member appreciates and knows the value we bring to the equation. Each and every TAG staff member understands the goals and objectives we pursue for the client: the “win.”

This may sound a little like BS in today’s world, but it’s the absolute truth. TAG and our team of experts care about outcomes and work very hard every day to create winning formulas for our client partners. That makes me proud of our team. I’m confident that each of them understands the power of these beliefs in guiding our actions each day.

Mike Vondran is the President/CEO of TAG Communications, Inc.