bastroptexas

Bastrop Adventure Book Launches

Photos and Article by Terry Hagerty

The inaugural issue of “Bastrop Adventure Book” – the benchmark magazine of the Bastrop Creative Agency – hit area newsstands and households with quite a splash this week.

The 32-page glossy-paper magazine, which comes out bi-monthly, is chock full of advertising, shopping coupons from area businesses, news and feature articles, plus photo spreads. It all came about through the hard work of the five founding partners of the public relations/advertising agency: Jonathan Adam, Chase Wilkinson, Debbie Denny, Colin Guerra and Mark Winslett. (Freelance writer/photographer Terry Hagerty also contributed to the first issue).

“Out of my 34 years in the advertising/publication business, this is my favorite project because of the incredible teamwork,” said Debbie Denny, the agency’s sales director. Denny has been a longtime fixture in the Bastrop business scene, having worked for a decade in advertising sales for the local newspaper as well as serving with key volunteer groups, such as the Downtown Business Alliance. Speaking of the numerous coupons offered by advertisers within the magazine’s pages, Denny added, “This is one of the nicest looking publications and [it has] great savings offered for the community.”

Business leaders were also thrilled with the ‘Bastrop-centric’ magazine. “It’s looks very nice, very impressive,” said Bastrop Chamber of Commerce President/CEO Becki Womble. “I’m excited to have this piece in our community to help promote Bastrop.”

Last Thursday, the partners gathered in the agency’s office to open up a shipment of boxes containing 7,500 issues fresh off the press. They even had time to pose for a quick photo with the stacked boxes of magazines.

Guerra, who shares graphic design duties with Winslett, seconded the efficient collaboration of working with his partners on the first issue: “I couldn’t be happier about how the magazine looks. It was definitely a team effort all around and a 100-percent local effort including the photography, design, writing, editing, sales and the printing. I couldn’t think of a better celebration of Bastrop culture than calling it the ‘Bastrop Adventure Book.’”

On both Thursday and Friday of last week, the partners and their friends, family members and other supporters were ‘out in the neighborhoods’ and visiting area businesses and governmental offices, distributing the free magazine.

Stay tuned for the next issue, due to come out in Early November. Until then, visit: www.bastropmarketplace.com  to read about the new agency and read feature stories and breaking news as well as a downloadable version of the magazine. Don’t forget to call Debbie Denny to place an add in the next issue: 512-844-3930.

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Telling Your Brand's Story - Voice

Where there is text, there is a story. From your mission statement to your Facebook posts to the captions on your photos, every time the written word is seen it should be working towards telling your brand’s story.

Understanding how to incorporate narrative in the most unlikely of sources is the key to boosting your brand in the world of modern marketing. With more and more of our attention moving to the internet and social media, it is important to know how to effectively tailor the written word to each new medium.

There are many keys to creating crafted content. One of the major keys is your understanding brand’s voice.

You want to make sure that your voice is clear and consistent and constantly reflects your brand image. If your business is a fun and carefree environment then your content should read similarly. A more relaxed tone to your messages, a more accessible vocabulary, engaging the reader through humor and other fun tricks. The same could be said if your business was more straightforward and professional. Your voice must match the way you’re presenting yourself. What works for to sell clothes at Wal-Mart does not necessarily work for Coach.

Knowing how to represent your brand voice is all about knowing both what your company stands for and what your clientele is looking for from you. If you’re doing it right, these two should be very similar things.

A brand voice is built through consistency and care. Its a slow build but with the right attention to detail and a dedicated team managing and creating content it will eventually prove to work for itself.

-Check back in every week to find helpful tips for telling your brand’s story and learn how Bastrop Creative Agency is using these keys to do that for you.

To be ‘zombie chimp’ or Snow White?

Lining up costumes and pumpkins for Halloween

Photos and Article by Terry Hagerty

Shall I be Superman, Snow White or a bone-chilling evil doer? Getting the right costume, carving the proper pumpkin, and getting ready for Bastrop’s Halloween Fest 2014 are favorite subjects as Halloween fast approaches. And don’t forget to see some spooky neighborhood yards in Bastrop in the lead-up to Halloween night.

Costume delights: For those not wanting to cut two holes for eyes in a bedsheet for a quick and cheap ‘ghost’ costume, the choices abound for getting the right costume for Halloween. Wallet-saving choices are handy at several thrift stores, including Bastrop’s Goodwill and Bits and Pieces. At Goodwill a large assortment of witches’ hats ($3.99 to $10) and plastic pumpkins share space with Snow White, Spiderman, Superman, Renaissance Queen and ‘sexy-nurse’ costumes – plus scary masks. The young boys will love the Superman costume with its chest piece, cape, snap-on arm guards and a bendable (rubber) crowbar. Sometimes just a mask can make the costume, if fitted with the right grungy clothes and a bit of splattered (fake) blood. “Vampire blood” goes for 79 cents. It says on the front package, “Looks and flows like real blood” and on back are “some bloody suggestions.” A “zombie chimp” mask at Goodwill certainly does the trick, too. Nearby are pirate “peg-leg socks” and feathered eyelashes (just 79 cents for the eyelashes). Bits & Pieces also offers a fine selection of costumes, plus scary decorations at the front of the store. Watch out for that very large spider in a web crawling over the front counter. There are also a large selection of costumes and accessories at retail outlets such as Walmart and H-E-B, and other smaller local stores – just shop around!

Have the urge to make your own costume? Google “make Halloween costumes” and see numerous information choices, such as: BuzzFeed.com; realsimple.com (“10 Last-Minute Halloween-Costume Ideas”); familycrafts; and popsugar.com, etc. If you’re looking to save some money this Halloween, you can likely make a quick and easy Halloween costume with clothing you might already have around the house; the websites will point the way.

Pumpkin ready: An exquisitely carved pumpkin on the front lawn with an interior light will add to the delight of trick-o-treater’s on Halloween. But a first rule of thumb is, let the adults do the carving/hollowing out of the pumpkin – kids can help draw the outlines of eyes, teeth, mouth. Inspect the pumpkin before getting to a store’s checkout line. Beware of discoloration, bumps and gouges – which contribute to rapid deterioration. A sturdy stem is a good sign. And the famous ‘thumb thump’ will tell you the pumpkin is ripe if you hear a hollow sound. Unless you have a large pumpkin budget, purchase a pumpkin closer to Halloween, knowing that it will likely start rotting after about a week or two. Curious about the tradition of pumpkins at Halloween? It traces back to several centuries to the British Isles. According to the History Channel, in Ireland and Scotland people began to make “Jack-o-lanterns” by carving scary faces into turnips or potatoes and placing them into windows or near doors to frighten away “Stingy Jack” and other wandering evil spirits. In England, large beets were/are still used.  According to lore, Stingy Jack had a few ‘run ins with the Devil’ and was a man on the run, so to speak. Immigrants from these countries brought the jack-o-lantern tradition to the United States. They soon found that pumpkins, a fruit native to America, made perfect jack-o-lanterns.

Halloween Fest and Festival/Corn Maze: Bastrop’s Halloween Fest 2014 on Friday Oct. 31 (from 5 p.m. to midnight) brings the community and visitors together for a grand event on Main Street. Presented by the Downtown Business Alliance, the event is a joint effort among local non-profit organizations, businesses and “great volunteers.” There will be haunted movie classics at the Bastrop Opera House (on Spring Street), games, trick-or-treating (from nearby stores) and a DJ at 921 Main St. There is also a costume contest for all ages. For more info, and for business-participation forms/registration see: bastropdba.org/halloween. On Nov. 1, The Fall Festival & Corn Maze at Barton Hill Farms, offers more fun. Barton Hill Farms is set amongst 100-year-old cottonwood trees, rolling grassy hills and the picturesque Colorado River. Children and adults will enjoy the outdoor entertainment, including the corn maze, rides, games, pumpkin patch, local vendors and seeing farm animals. We welcome large groups and school field trips. The farm is located at 1115 FM 969 in Bastrop and will be open Saturdays 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Sundays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.) through Nov. 9 .For more information and to buy and tickets, go to www.bartonhillfarms.com.

 

One Week in the Books

Wow. What a difference a week makes. We at Bastrop Creative Agency had our first company meeting almost three weeks ago and with a presentation last Tuesday began a whirlwind week of meetings and business.

It seems like just yesterday that we were all gathered around a table in the conference room of the Holiday Inn Express, sharing 10 interesting facts about ourselves to the group. Somewhere between Jonathan’s tales of paying for college through chess tournament winnings and Chase reminiscing on the time he used chewed bubblegum as a ninja headband when he was little five independent minds formed a company.

Two weeks were spent ironing out details and rates, constructing a website and converting the conference room into the Bastrop Creative Agency’s office.

This past Tuesday morning we met with the realtors of Keller Williams and suddenly, almost out of nowhere, our week became booked solid. A flood of interest came in through our Facebook page, from friends and past clients from other work, right down to random encounters in the barbershop.

We look toward Week Two with a boat-load of enthusiasm. Our creative team is already hard at work on a few websites for clients signed this week while our Sales Director is poised to make more appointments and bring more clients into the Bastrop Creative Agency family. The office is buzzing with excitement and we’re ready to share it with you.

Last year I was lucky enough to be able to be a part of the extreme makeover home edition with my best friend. Tonight is the premiere or our episode, we were asked to be an extra in the back of the filming. Best experience, and was so gratifying knowing I was a part of help out our fellow texans who lost there home in the Bastrop fires. :) #blessed #proud #extremehomemakeover #bastroptexas