Celebrating 20 Years in Business
It’s official. Today is the second day of the 20th anniversary year for Beetle Press! It’s kind of amazing to me, and I’m excited to spend some time reminiscing in 2018 as well as working hard at moving forward!
I launched Beetle Press in 1998 after working as a journalist for 15 years, first as a beat reporter for the Springfield Republican and then as a writer and editor at the Daily Hampshire Gazette. That training well informs the work I do with clients in connecting them with the media via press releases. It informs almost everything I do, actually.
Working as a journalist taught me to excel as an interviewer and to read people and understand what they are trying to communicate. It also gave me great skills in storytelling and editing.
I use those talents now with a diverse range of clients from the nonprofit and private sectors. I write for—and edit—print pieces such as magazines and annual reports. I create editorial calendars that include print and online media channels, and I support digital marketing efforts for clients, writing blogs, enewsletters, and website content.
In 2013, I introduced book development to my roster of services after working on several books for clients, and I’ve since helped launch many authors’ publications.
To mark the 20th anniversary for the business, Alison Winkler, a graphic designer native to Northampton who now lives in Brooklyn, N.Y., adapted the original Beetle Press logo design by Lisa Stowe of Florence, creating an anniversary version. Ali is my dear friend’s daughter and my younger daughter’s dear friend! I’ve known her since she was born. It was a pleasure to work with Ali as a professional; her approach and her results impress me!
For many years, I promoted Beetle Press as a “one-stop shop,” offering writing, editing and graphic design services. Since meeting my colleagues in The Creative, though, I have been able to return to my roots and focus on writing, editing, and PR services. When clients need more comprehensive services, I partner with Ruth Griggs, a marketing strategist, and Maureen Scanlon, a graphic designer. I thoroughly enjoy working with these wise and wonderful women.
I have a bachelor’s degree in English and a minor in journalism from Westfield State College, earned in 1985. (It is only thanks to my journalism professor that my writing career was launched at all! Read that story here.)
I am still connected to what is now known as Westfield State University. I’m the editor of the University’s alumni magazine, and have been since 2002. And since 2003, I’ve mentored dozens of interns from Westfield State as well as the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
I also employ four former interns on a freelance basis: Shelby Ashline, a graduate of UMass; Shannon Grossman and Ashley Pond, graduates of Westfield State; and David Kennedy, a current Westfield State student.
Current clients of Beetle Press include Glenmeadow, Florence Bank, Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech, Sports Travel and Tours, and the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art.
In some subsequent blogs this year, I will tell you about some of my earlier clients, as well as how the PR and communications industry has changed in 20 years!
I put out a monthly newsletter, highlighting stories about my clients and offering resources and tips as well. You can subscribe on my website by scrolling down to the footer! If you sign up, you’ll get a free white paper on how to connect with the media!