It has really been a good year. I’m not saying that to be shocking, it really has been. Despite the obstacles (apropos of the economy, the industry, etc), we were able to continue on our path of aggressive growth, innovation and a whole lotta laughs. And now, we get to where everyone can decompress for a month. The golden word around HQ: Sabbatical. Nothing does it like a month off to recharge, reinvent and reinvigorate. And after this year, everyone needs it more than ever.
Within our web incubator, we launched our New Media division with a migration of our website to a 2.0 platform that allows us to do… virtually anything. And we have been. The number of friends/followers continues to swell and we’re loving the direct contact with you. Thank you for making our presence that much stronger, and our insights that much keener.
Our 2D Barcode platform is making waves—and judging from the high volume of all you scanners, you’re having a lot of fun collecting “free stuff” and other offers tied to the program. Not using it? Go to lipulse.com/future to find out how your cell phone can start acting like your personal concierge. Wait until we release our mobile app! (And I’m already thinking about 3D.)
Our advertising team has bucked the trend in both publishing and the local economy and brought in more sales, more ad pages, and more renewed business than ever before. The business department and our fulfillment team have been growing both our subscriptions and the number of retailers where you can pick up the Pulse.
So you want to know how we do it? Here’s a list of the Top Twelve, in no particular order.
12. Don’t sleep. Don’t need it, don’t want it. But if you do, make sure you dream.
11. Ice cream cake.
10. Melissa Flagg, who steers our communications and heads up the web incubator. On top of all that, she has essentially reinvented corporate communications. Like Hunter Thompson, Walter Cronkite and Truman Capote did by introducing a personalized flair into their styles of reporting, Melissa has created “Flaggs.” Press releases, if you will, that are exciting, “fly on the wall” perspectives of what we’re doing. Find them in the blogs section on this site. MF, I hope your break is full of new tattoos and surfing in Costa Rica with hubby.
9. Fresh salads. Best when eaten communally at the lunch table.
8. Coffee. Bathtubs full at a time (see #10).
7. Lilien Williams, our Director of Advertising who’s been fearlessly leading her team, has an unshakable focus on serving our clients’ needs. Whenever something comes up, you can almost see her wheels creaking backwards to recall what the client said about one point or another. She better see lots of snow on her ski trip.
6. A pool table in the office.
5. Art Director Kenny Janosick, who must have a secret twin. He is never tired. Not even a little. You’d think with all the pressure on the guy, he’d get at least a little cranky sometimes. No Dice. Plus, he never runs out of ideas, even when we’re talking about something unrelated to his work. So that makes me think there are really two Kennys: When one gets tired the other works, switching off to give the appearance of one unruffled guy. I just hope they both come back from snowboarding out West.
4. Music. Make it loud, make it funky, and make sure there is lots of it around. All different types, all the time.
3.5. The F-word.
3. Writers can be irascible, absent-minded children. Sometimes, working them through a piece is more challenging than the piece itself. Managing Editor Matt Kapelas has been running the game through each issue since our third. And yet, we have pretty much the same lineup of expert columnists we had in the beginning—a terrific feat. Plus, we’ve been able to attract some of the best writers out there. No wonder he doesn’t have a Blackberry, all that beeping and buzzing would make it hard to concentrate at the poker tournies he’ll probably spend the next month at.
2. There has to be someone in charge. Depending on the day, you could debate who that is around here. But no one would protest to Editorial Assistant Mike Isenbek being named so. This guy is able to accomplish voluminous amounts of work in no time. He’s been with us since the third issue or something. He writes the Zoom, New Release Tuesdays, all the events listings, the famed Pulse Rate, and lots of other things that come up. And he’s spending the break working on some Egyptology research. See what I mean? Life support system for a brain.
1. Embrace the circus. The unpredictability will keep you on your toes, smiling and seeing things differently.
So that’s just a few of the key ingredients here. There are hundreds more, but it’s time to break now. And I have a plane to catch. Me? I’ll be exploring some of the more remote parts of the planet. Digging through sandstorms, sketching the Colossi of Memnon, camping in the desert… If you care to keep up with me, check out my travel blog where I’ll be uploading pictures and news from everywhere in Egypt and the lost city of Petra (Jordan).
Don’t worry, mascot Zoki will drop you the occasional blog from grandma’s house.