Cheers To the Year Behind & the Year Ahead

posted Dec 29, 2016, 1:37 PM by Allison Hastey   [ updated Dec 29, 2016, 1:51 PM ]

As 2016 comes to a close, we want to pause and reflect on what a wonderfully challenging year it's been for Merritt+Grace. We say goodbye to 12 months of workplans, deadlines, meetings, bike commutes (hello, Ironman 70.3 training!), presentations, endless bowls of pho and a whole lot of smiles. We feel incredibly fortunate for the partners and projects we have encountered along the way. From launching statewide campaigns to leading brand brainstorming sessions, we have continued to grow our public health and entertainment portfolio while expanding to support fellow entrepreneurs and small businesses. No matter the sector, the passion and teamwork we feel with our partners is second to none. Together, we are making a difference, and for that we are thankful. 

Every new year brings change, excitement, uncertainty, opportunities and growth. We will continue to challenge ourselves to be the best we can be in 2017. Our dedication to serving our partners and community will hold strong. We look forward to providing stellar services to our current clients and to those we have yet to meet. We have a number of exciting projects lined up and we can't wait to share them with you. 

As the clock strikes midnight on New Years Eve, we will raise our glasses to you with a hearty cheers of gratitude for your collaboration and support. May 2017 bring continued growth, success and happiness.


Parents Needed for Online Survey & Focus Groups

posted Sep 9, 2016, 6:05 AM by Allison Hastey   [ updated Sep 9, 2016, 6:17 AM ]

Recruitment Materials
Market research time again! We're working with Tri-County Health Department to conduct an online survey and focus groups with parents of children under 18 to uncover awareness and understanding of the medical home philosophy of care. This information will assist in future medical home communication efforts. The survey and focus groups are available in English and Spanish.

Your help in recruiting participants will greatly support this effort. Flyers and social media graphics are available for partners to distribute via their communication networks. Materials can be accessed at the following link: http://goo.gl/mxkhdb

WHO:
  • Parents of children under 18
  • Reside in Adams, Arapahoe or Douglas County
  • All ages, gender and ethnicities welcome
WHERE:
Survey: Online at www.surveymonkey.com/r/TCHDMedicalHomeSurvey
Focus Groups: Adams (Spanish), Arapahoe (English) and Douglas County (English)

WHEN:
Survey: Open through mid September
Focus groups: 9/21/16 (Douglas), 9/22/16 (Arapahoe), 9/22/16 (Adams)

INCENTIVE: 
Survey: Participants are entered into a raffle for a $50 Target gift card
Focus groups: Participants receive one (1) $30 gift card incentive, childcare and a meal

Thanks for your help!

Keep Tri-ing

posted Jun 20, 2016, 10:49 AM by Allison Hastey   [ updated Jun 20, 2016, 11:01 AM ]

Challenges come in all shapes and sizes. Some we sign up for and some come without permission. We've written in the past about the exciting challenge of starting a business. We've been incredibly fortunate to continue to grow as entrepreneurs, taking on amazing new clients and projects. In addition to strengthening and expanding our business, we chose to take on a personal challenge the last 9 months - training for Ironman Boulder 70.3. How do two busy women who don't often run or swim sign up for this type of an endurance race? With naive optimism. 

As we shared last August, we were inspired by the friends and strangers we watched reach their goal, and the finish line, at Ironman Boulder. It's a mental and physical feat and we wanted to tri (eh? eh?) one ourselves. The parallels to training for the race and building a successful business are uncanny. They both take goals, plans, determination, dedication, frustration, laughter and being open to transition (race puns!). Training for the race has made us stronger personally and professionally. We're proud to say we run a women-owned marketing agency and we're proud to say we successfully finished the Ironman Boulder 70.3. We love the ongoing adventure of growing our business alongside the motivation of fellow business owners, partners, clients, and athletes. Every one of you helped us cross the finish line with smiles on our faces and happiness in our hearts. THANK YOU. 

And a special shout out to our client, Rising Tide Triathlon Coaching. Owner Sonja is an inspiration, cheerleader and super accomplished triathlete. If you're thinking of jumping into this crazy tri world, check out her site for custom coaching!

Parents of Kids 10-15 Needed for Focus Groups

posted Apr 4, 2016, 2:43 PM by Allison Hastey   [ updated Apr 5, 2016, 2:44 PM ]

We are pleased to be working with Denver Public Health, Tri-County Health Department, Jefferson County Public Health and Colorado Children's Immunization Coalition to conduct focus groups in April with parents of children ages 10 - 15. The goal of the focus groups is to learn about attitudes toward HPV vaccinations and test messaging and advertising creative. This information will assist in a future HPV awareness campaign.

Your help in recruiting participants will greatly support full representation of our community in this effort. Flyers and social media graphics are available for partners to distribute via their communication networks. Materials can be accessed at the following link: https://goo.gl/H51sHQ

Below is information on the focus group structure:
REQUIREMENTS: 
  • Parents of children ages 10 - 15
  • Willing to talk about HPV and adolescent cancer prevention
WHERE: Denver, Adams, Arapahoe, Douglas and Jefferson Counties
WHEN: Specific April dates included in recruitment materials
WHAT: Participants receive one (1) $100 cash incentive, and dinner
HOW: Participants will be screened by calling 303-381-7414

We appreciate your support!

Sweet Valentine's Day

posted Feb 12, 2016, 8:35 AM by Allison Hastey   [ updated Feb 12, 2016, 8:36 AM ]

Valentine's Day is a chance to share sweet thoughts, and often sweet treats, with those you love and care for whether near or far. As we blogged in January, we are taking time each month to give back to the community. Like Cupid hitting us with his arrow, we came upon a great ask to write Valentines Day cards for veteran servicemen and women as we were searching for this month's opportunity to give back. We loved the idea of sharing our appreciation and support for our military veterans. We're proud to use our time this month to say thank you to those who worked to keep our country safe. It's a pretty sweet place to call home. 

Love the idea and want to get involved? With the help of the organizations below, you can send letters of appreciation to active, reserve and veteran military at any time!
We're always interested in learning about new opportunities to give back in Colorado and beyond. We welcome any suggestions and would love to have others join us in our resolution to serve others!

Built for the Community

posted Feb 8, 2016, 11:51 AM by Allison Hastey   [ updated Feb 8, 2016, 11:51 AM ]

https://mhcd.org/dahlia-campus-for-health-well-being/
We recently had the privilege to tour the new Dahlia Campus for Health & Well-Being in northeast Park Hill. Built on the voices and needs of the community, the space offers Denver residents:
  • early childhood education
  • access to fresh produce & healthy protein...grown right on site!
  • outdoor & indoor community space
  • pediatric dental care
  • child and adult mental health services 
From the bright colors of the hallways to the cooking classes in the state-of-the-art kitchen, the Campus' holistic approach to health and wellness speaks to the desires of families living in the neighborhood. The staff at Mental Health Center of Denver asked, listened, and built an amazing 4-acre site that is inviting, beautiful, inspiring and now open! 

Attend their grand opening on Thu Feb 25 to experience and learn about the Campus firsthand. RSVP by calling 303.504.6732.

Why, Hello 2016

posted Jan 8, 2016, 2:05 PM by Frances Tourtelot   [ updated Jan 8, 2016, 2:47 PM by Allison Hastey ]

We love the start of a new year. Fresh ideas, fresh outlooks, and fresh projects. While resolutions go hand-in-hand with fresh starts, it's important to remember that changes can be gradual and small choices can make a big impact. Maybe it's not the day to tackle the biggest bites of your huge resolutions. Just a nibble is still progress. Perhaps it's simply a phone call to a friend or former colleague you haven't connected with since "last year" (har har) or a moment to mediate during your work day. Whatever your resolutions are, don't forget the new year is a marathon and not a sprint. We are all in this together! Here at M+G, we resolved to take time out of each month to give back to the community, outside of our usual capacity. Today we paused from our usual schedule of projects and meetings to take time to serve others. For us, that pause meant serving lunch (seemed fitting to be put in charge of fruit and salad) at the Denver Rescue Mission. The Denver Rescue Mission does amazing work providing support, services and hope to people in need. They are able to meld being a well-oiled machine in the kitchen with being a warm and personal face to those they touch. We applaud the staff and volunteers at Denver Rescue Mission and are thankful for the time we spent serving with them on this cold and snowy day. We will continue to share our resolutions and goals with you as the year rolls on and hope you do the same. May 2016 be your best year yet!

Happy Holidays

posted Dec 22, 2015, 11:48 AM by Frances Tourtelot   [ updated Dec 22, 2015, 11:49 AM ]

Does anyone else feel like they blinked and all of a sudden Christmas is here?! We're not sure if we've had too much fun, too much work (which is kinda the same as fun in our book!), too many errands or MAYBE too many breakfast burritos but seemingly without warning, snow shoveling and shopping have hit maximum highs.

Between wrapping up projects with virtual bows and wrapping up presents with actual bows, it is GAME ON. We are grateful for year-end meetings, last-minute projects, spending time with loved ones, and of course, holiday cheer. Honestly, we had to add holiday cheer to-dos to our lists for fear of missing out. It's been a great reminder to prioritize what's important - we talk it through, look at our schedule, write it down, and make the time. With 2016 right around the corner (don't blink! ;) ), we'll be expanding our prioritizing process to focus on the new year's goals. We can't wait!

We hope you all enjoy the holiday season, even when spiced with a little frenzied scheduling, to return to the peace, love, and gratitude of the season. We wish you and yours all the best.

We're So Thankful

posted Nov 22, 2015, 9:26 PM by Allison Hastey   [ updated Nov 22, 2015, 9:26 PM ]

We have been saying for the last few weeks how we can't believe it's already the holidays...like the leaves, this fall has blown by! The passing of time brings so much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. The list could go on and on but to get you back to celebrating, here are our top 5:
  1. Peanut, butter and honey sandwiches ("PBH sammies"). When you are on the go as much as we are, these little sweet treats keep us full and happy. Really, happy. It may be a problem ;)
  2. Bikes. We made it a priority to use our bikes as our primary means for commuting and we've stuck to that goal. This is not only environmentally and financially friendly for our business but we discover the best ideas while pedaling. With that said, we have to say thank you to our partners who support us when we show up a wee bit out of breath, toting our bike helmets.
  3. Resources. Colorado is a great state for many reasons and one of the best is the encouraging environment for small, women-owned businesses. From trainings to networking groups, we've learned from a lot of inspiring and experienced people who have helped influence our business practices.
  4. Partners. We have been fortunate to work with so many wonderful teams on a variety of projects. We thrive on teamwork and are proud of the results we have accomplished together.
  5. All of you. We are lucky to have a strong network of supporters who share, introduce us to new opportunities, listen to our successes and challenges, and just simply give us strength. 
As you take a moment to reflect on what you are thankful for this holiday, know we are thankful for YOU. We wish you a wonderful-filled day with loved ones. Gobble, gobble. 

Denver Marijuana Management Symposium 2015

posted Nov 10, 2015, 9:54 AM by Frances Tourtelot   [ updated Nov 10, 2015, 4:01 PM by Allison Hastey ]

We had the pleasure of attending the City of Denver's first Marijuana Management Symposium last week. The comprehensive event demonstrated Denver's collaborative approach to managing marijuana from unprecedented legal implementation to regulation to communication. While there are more than 210 locations already selling marijuana in Denver, this is a new and innovative industry with the remarkable opportunity to craft policies and procedures which were previously nonexistent. Colorado voters passed Amendment 64 (regulating recreational use of marijuana) by 66% in 2012 and since then Denver has taken the helm in managing and executing the will of the people. Our key takeaways from the Symposium for successful implementation are:
  • Collaboration across all stakeholders - multiple state and local agencies, private enterprise, community members, experts, and dissenting voices are all at the table to help make the best decision possible.
  • Communication - in an ever-changing landscape, be forthcoming with available information through various tactics while acknowledging answers are evolving as the industry develops.
  • Transparency - with many stakeholders relying on each other for support, this is fundamental to an efficient system open to addressing successes and challenges.
As a marketing agency in Colorado, we believe it's important to participate in the conversation about the entire industry ecosystem to best understand the complex variables and inform communication strategies and tactics. We applaud the City for taking such a proactive approach to sharing their valuable information with public and private sector attendees from Colorado and beyond. Well done, Denver!

We encourage you to take a moment to review the useful resources below to learn more about the industry impacting our state and nation:

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