|Stay in touch with Straus!
is exciting, yet humbling, to share the stories of Straus clients who use the
power of business to change the world for the better. This spring, we've been
busy tapping the power of the media to advance their work. From Bon Appétit Management Company taking a leadership position on farm worker justice in Florida, to
Equator Coffees boosting a young Zimbabwean woman named Chido out of poverty
and into micro-entrepreneurship, to B Corporations revolutionizing business as
usual - our clients inspire and energize us every day.
also participated in some of the most important events in the food and
sustainable enterprise space, reconnecting with old friends and making new
ones. See Fingers on the Pulse below
to hear about our most meaningful moments.
course, it hasn't all been a cakewalk. The Swine Flu scare, unrelenting
recession, and the constant flux of the media landscape have made for a bumpy spring. As pragmatic optimists, the Straus team agrees with green jobs guru Van Jones that "you need a break
down to reach a break through." Our clients are truly the
leaders working on these important breakthroughs, and we are honored to
dedicate our expertise, energy and passion to their work.
Straus, Haven Bourque and the Straus team
Equator Coffees & Teas
might be the best kept secret in the
coffee world - for nearly
15 years, this women-owned business has been working quietly at their roasting
facility in San Rafael, CA, supplying both top Bay Area and national restaurants
such as the French Laundry and
Jardinière and popular casual establishments including Atlas Café and Arizmendi.
years of quiet excellence - paying their farmers above market prices, driving
biodiesel and hybrid vehicles, and roasting their coffee on a machine that is
80% more efficient than any other - in the past month, Equator has been causing
quite a lot of buzz (pun intended).
featured on the cover of the Marin IJ
for their sustainable coffee farm in Panama and covered by ABC news for winning national business awards,
Equator is about to introduce Chido's Blend with 100% of profits dedicated to helping tens of thousands of young women
in conflict-torn regions to support themselves and their communities via micro-lending and innovative reuse of plant waste from coffee trees.
To learn more about the remarkable woman behind these efforts, Chido
Govero, for whom the blend is named, her partnership with the Zeri Foundation, or to purchase this
amazing coffee, visit Equator Coffees. We're thrilled Equator is emerging from their
under-the-radar status and that our new morning brew is having such a positive
Bon Appétit Management Company
Thanks to important coverage of the issue by
reporters like Barry Estabrook of
Gourmet Magazine, concerns about the horrific working conditions of tomato farm
workers in Florida have come to the forefront. In light of these revelations,
and true to their brand, Bon Appétit
took immediate action. Fedele Bauccio and Maisie Greenawalt (CEO and VP) flew
to Immokalee, FL to meet with laborers and their representatives at the Coalition for Immokalee Workers.
In short order, Bon Appétit reached a groundbreaking agreement that went
far beyond any previous accord, creating an official Code of Conduct that
specifically addresses labor conditions and needs of farm workers. Straus firmly believes that part of the power of our work is in connecting great
journalists to the important stories that move the needle. As
evidence, Jane Black of The Washington Post does excellent service to
this issue in her article detailing
Bon Appétit's efforts to bring social justice to those
who work hard to feed us.
Tapping the Power of Straus:
Services & Partnerships
Our FAQ: "What exactly
it like this: Positive media coverage is a powerful vehicle for influencing
behavior. Straus builds strong relationships with journalists who
write about sustainability issues, acting as a resource to them and as a
mouthpiece for our clients. In other words, we know a lot of writers, bloggers, editors, TV producers and reporters, and they trust us to
deliver information that's worth reporting.
We tell our clients' stories by blending social media
skills - Facebook, Twitter and other platforms critical to spreading the
world - along with traditional agency tools, including strategic positioning
and the time-honed skill of delivering the right message to the right people. The result is action for positive change.
In recent years, Hollywood has made a
conscious effort to promote green and healthy lifestyles. Disney Studios has stopped all partnerships with fast food chains because of childhood
obesity rates, and popular TV shows such
as "Kath & Kim," Two and a Half Men," and "Desperate Housewives" are increasingly
integrating healthy and eco-friendly products. We've partnered with Hollywood branding expert PopLab Marketing to identify opportunities including television and film
placement, celebrity alliances, and partnerships with award shows and events. Is your product ready for prime time or the big screen? Contact Anna for more
+ Business = Social Commerce
Facebook is a fun way to dig up your old prom date. Increasingly it's becoming a marketplace, too. To help our clients make the most of it,
we've partnered with milyon*i (pronounced
million-eye) to pioneer the field of social commerce - allowing companies to
sell their products directly from Facebook,
MySpace and other social networking
platforms. We're helping companies like Cowgirl Creamery in piloting this initiative.
Soon, this revolutionary web 2.0 technology will be widely available to
other companies. To learn more, Michael is ready to start leveraging your fans and
followers for your bottom-line.
Record & On Top of Your Game
Want to deliver a brilliant interview every time you talk to a journalist? Wish you could nail that spectacular quote
and the perfect sound byte instead of tripping over your words? Ever been misquoted or left out
of stories you were interviewed for? We can help. Polish
your messaging delivery, learn how to handle nerves, and volley back with strong answers to hardball questions,
and keep bloggers coming back for more with Media Training. A little tune up can go
a long way for experts and brand representatives, and if you've never been a
spokesperson before, this is your chance to learn. Straus has logged hundreds of hours teaching spokespersons to be interview-savvy
and successful. Contact Haven for more information.
Traditionally, if an independent film wanted
to successfully reach the masses the big driver was a theatrical release. Now, an increasing number of renegade
filmmakers realize that a home-brewed screening campaign, where real
people all across the country sponsor viewings that range from 5 to 500 people,
can be a stronger marketing force than
the standard promotion playbook.
This spring, Wicked Delicate, with the help of the Straus team, launched successful
grassroots campaigns for two critically-acclaimed, but under-the-radar films: A Sense of Wonder, profiling the life
of the mother of the modern environmental movement Rachel Carson and The Greening of Southie, a film about
the construction of the first residential green building in Boston, which was featured on Good Morning America and in The New Yorker.
new distribution model can also open doors to conventional distribution outlets
down the line: The Greening of Southie landed a
theatrical distribution deal that will put the film on the big screen this
summer, and A Sense of Wonder got two TV broadcast offers.
Independent films are crucial for helping us to
reach the tipping point on key social and environmental issues. If you are
interested in learning how to get more viewers, distributors and media coverage for your film, contact Michael for details.
|Fingers on the Pulse
Just a few of the inspiring moments we witnessed this spring that have fueled our passion and our work:
- Will Allen spoke about the incredible success of his non-profit Growing Power in bring healthy food, jobs and urban revitalization to
Milwaukee and many other communities (W.K. Kellogg Foundation's Food and Society Conference).
- Judy Wicks, founder of Philadelphia's famous White Dog Café, debated issues of social enterprise, and the
evolution of business and finance into engines for social and
environmental sustainability (Investors' Circle Spring Conference).
- If you
thought that genetically modified (GMO) foods were scary, Dag Falck,
who spearheads the organic industry's task force on nanotechnology, lead a
nanotechnology panel discussion that would have curled your hair (The Organic Summit). Listen to this short radio interview, and then
check out this list of *known* nanotech products already in use.
- Trevor Corson (widely acclaimed lobster sex expert), the
Atlantic's Corby Kummer, and dozens of
journalists gathered for two tweet-worthy days at the Monterey Bay Aquarium to hear
leading experts address sustainable (and unsustainable) food system practices
(Cooking for Solutions).