Meet the Team: Julie – San Diego PR Pro

Because it’s her birthday today, we’re dedicating our 3rd edition of “Meet our Team” to our President and in-house champagne connoisseur, Julie Wright.

A connected and passionate communicator and successful entrepreneur, Julie leads client strategy development and oversees the hard-working team at (W)right On, inspiring excellence and achievement for the agency’s clients every day.

Originally from Vancouver, B.C., she began her career as a journalist, working as a radio news anchor. Today, her knowledge and skill in traditional public relations strategies and marketing communications is matched with her social media and online marketing know-how. Julie is a past chair of the San Diego North Economic Development Council Board of Directors and the President’s University Council, a community advisory group at California State University San Marcos. She sits on the Board of Trustees of the Tri-City Hospital Foundation and on the advisory board for RSI Systems International, developers of the RoomKey guest experience software for the hospitality industry.

Julie has achieved various recognitions for her community service and leadership, including being named a Woman Who Means Business by the San Diego Business Journal in 2010 and a 40 Under 40 honoree by San Diego Metropolitan in 2006. She received the Fran Aleshire Award for Community Leadership from the alumni of Leadership North County in 2009.

What would you be doing if you weren’t at your current job?

I would be the host of my own champagne travel show and leading champagne travel tours. (Don’t let me think too hard about this or I just might run off and do it!)

What’s one word you would use to describe yourself?

Adventurous

Fill in the blank. “If you really knew me, you’d know ____”

Where I’m ticklish.

 What super power would you like to have?

Time travel

What would a “perfect” day look like to you?Hawaiian-sunrise

Wake to a Hawaiian sunrise. Go for a run. Eat papaya with a squeeze of lime for breakfast. Go snorkeling or diving. Sip a maitai by the pool. Nap. Go shopping. Buy a pretty dress. Wear it to dinner under a Banyan tree. Listen to the Hawaiian singers and watch the sunset.

What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned in the past year?

I’m happiest when I’m laughing.

Best vacation you’ve had?

See #5 (Hawaii). See also #1 (champagne).

Favorite quote?

Luck is opportunity meeting preparation.

If Hollywood made a movie about your life, who would be cast as you?

Helen Mirren.

What’s your drink of choice?A Champagne Cheers!

See #1, but I have many drinks of choice depending on mood or time of day. If you are talking happy hour, then I would say a pint of Avery White Rascal. But in the hot drink category, it has to be Good Earth Green Tea Lemongrass, which I have been hoarding since it was discontinued.

If you were stuck on an island and could only choose 5 CDs, what would they be?

The Eagles Greatest Hits

Foo Fighters Greatest Hits

Green Day’s American Idiot

Willie Nelson’s Greatest Hits

Vivaldi’s Four Seasons

Fill in the blank. “People would be surprised if they knew____”

I am not actually ticklish.

What’s your biggest pet peeve?

The expression, “I know, right?” If you know, then why are you asking me?

What’s one thing you can’t live without?

My sons.

Favorite line from a movie?

“You don’t know what it’s like to be me out here for you. It’s a pride-swallowing siege that I will never fully tell you about.” – Jerry Maguire

Do you have an office nickname? What is it?

J-Dub

What’s the best/worst gift you have ever received?pink overalls

For my 12th birthday, my mom bought me hot pink overalls. For my 13th birthday, she bought me banana yellow rugby pants. Not exactly what young teenage girls are hoping to get when they just want to fit in. My grandfather gave me a rake one year. I guess he thought I should be pitching in around his yard. And, to round out the list, I have to throw in the white yarn vest with tasseled fringe that my husband got me for my birthday the month after we got engaged.

What do you like to do in your free time?

Anything active. Run, hike, yoga, cycle, practice golf, walk the dogs…

5 Signs Your Brand Needs a Refresh

branding refresh

branding refresh

By Keely Smith, Design & Multimedia Specialist

Branding plays an influential role in setting a business up for success. A brand is more than just a logo – it is a visual representation of a business’ values and creates an entire customer experience from the visual identity and website to social media presence. So is yours working for you? Below are 5 signs your brand is due for a refresh.

  1. Your brand looks outdated

Our world is certainly no stranger to change. With the adoption of new technologies, it is youtubeimportant to have a brand that moves a business forward and doesn’t hold it back. Having a “retro” identity may be intentional in some cases. However, if a brand is no longer effectively serving as a visual representation of your business and its vision and doesn’t communicate key messaging clearly, it’s time for an update.

A complete overhaul is not always the solution. Minor adjustments to existing elements, like a change in color palette or typefaces used, are very simple and effective ways to give your brand a facelift. The goal is to achieve an identity that looks timeless.

  1. Your brand is stunting growth

As a business grows, so should its brand. Let’s say a business changes its services offered – there has been a shift in target audience, or a new partnership has formed. A successful brand should reflect any modifications made. If the existing brand is no longer applicable to current growth and expansion, it’s time to go back and revisit the drawing board.

  1. Your brand doesn’t add value

Are you an industry leader? Do you have outstanding customer service? Are you serious about what you do and what your business has to offer? Great! Your brand should represent everything you take pride in as a business.

A well-thought-out, well-designed brand can do wonders for paving the way to success. A brand creates a “visual reputation” and has a major influence on public perception. If you want your business to be taken seriously, you need to seriously invest in the development of your brand. It will set you apart from competitors and is a proactive way to add value to everything you do.

  1. Your brand lacks consistency

Do you have five or more logos? Countless ways your brand is being used? Consistency is everything, and having too many brands or different logo elements displayed across different media platforms (web, social media, printed collateral, etc.) may hinder the message your business wishes to communicate. Less really is more when it comes to a visual identity. Excessive taglines, colors, gradients and drop shadows in graphic elements are a thing of the past. We have seen a shift in design trends from the overly flashy to the minimal and simplistic.

Although versatility is not a necessity, it provides an opportunity to establish a strong and consistent visual presence. You may have a visual element or icon associated with your brand, which could be used to create a background pattern for a website, for example. You can have a dynamic branding suite, yet maintain consistency and market your brand effectively.

  1. Your brand was your latest DIY project

DIY-foundation-repair-mistakeThere are countless platforms out there that allow anyone to create their own brand with the click of a button. Although this may be convenient and cost-effective, it runs the risk of projecting an unsuccessful or negative image. This is where investing in your brand pays off. It is important to work with a graphic designer when it comes to the development of your visual identity. Graphic design is an art form, and designers are constantly fine-tuning their skill. Designers specialize in visual communication and know how to deliver an intentional brand with a strong visual presence.

It all goes back to what you are trying to accomplish as a brand. Consistency is critical, and your branding should reflect that. Whether you’re a big corporation or a small startup, these tips will help you decide if a refresh is right for you.