Meyocks Challenges Des Moines Ad Community To Raise Awareness for ALS

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014 | Written by Josh Fleming


Shortly after accepting the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge at Principal Park on Monday, Doug Jeske, president of The Meyocks Group and board president of the ALS Association-Iowa Chapter, challenged others in the Greater Des Moines advertising community to take the Ice Bucket Challenge and raise awareness for ALS.

To learn more about how you can help find a cure for this horrible disease and help those who suffer from it, please visit the ALS Association-Iowa Chapter.


Party Inconspicuously

Thursday, June 12th, 2014 | Written by Stacy Conradt

At the Meyocks Group, we pride ourselves on throwing a pretty good party. So when the folks at Templeton Rye asked us to create some exclusive perks for the ultimate Templeton Rye enthusiasts – Bootleggers Society members – we asked ourselves: “How can we help fans experience the fun of an Official Templeton Rye party at home?” After some good discussion (and a few sips of The Good Stuff), we had our answer: the Official Bootleggers Society Party Planning Guide.

Templeton_Rye_Party_Guide _meyocks

The comprehensive 55-page guide to planning your own Speakeasy Spectacular includes everything from recipes and a grocery list to printable décor and instructions on making your own speakeasy door.

Because we are nothing if not thorough, we took it upon ourselves to personally test everything in the guide by opening our own little juice joint for the evening. We mixed the drinks, made the food, printed the printables, dressed up dapper, and even made a speakeasy door. And to get in, you had to know the password. (FYI: It was “Capone.”)

Our dedicated Templeton Rye team also tried a few recipes submitted by fellow Bootleggers at Candied Templeton Rye Walnuts, Whiskey Sour Cupcakes, and Templeton Truffles are just a few of the tempting treats that can be found at


Want to throw your own party? Not a Bootleggers Society member yet? Signing up is easy. Just visit the website and enter your personal info (assuming you’re of legal drinking age, of course). It’s completely free! In addition to the party planning guide, you’ll receive perks like our bimonthly newsletter, free images to use on Facebook and Twitter, fun surprises in the mail, rye whiskey recipes and more.


Happy National Corn on the Cob Day!

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014 | Written by Josh Fleming

Nat.l Corn on the Cob Day_The_Meyocks_Group


Iowa State’s 2014 Football Poster Unveiled

Friday, April 18th, 2014 | Written by Doug Jeske
Category: Branding

The Meyocks Group has been a proud marketing partner of ISU Athletics since 2004. The 2014 football poster gives a nod to the ISU Fight Song and pays tribute to Iowa State’s wonderful fans.

The poster also continues the “One” campaign introduced five years ago. We’re pleased at how ISU fans have embraced the “CyclONE NATION” campaign, and we can’t wait for football season to begin. Go Cyclones!

Four Heroes, Fourteen Villains, Infinite Possibilities

Friday, March 14th, 2014 | Written by Chad Baker

In part one of this article, we discussed the origin of the Smile Squad project for Delta Dental Plans Association – and how what started in concept as an educational card game for children transformed in execution into a much broader platform for delivering oral health education content. In this article, we’ll examine some of the other ways The Meyocks Group team brought the Smile Squad to life.

With viability in mind, we developed rich backstories for all eighteen original characters. This included illustrating a twelve-episode digital comic book adventure to help flesh out the conflict between the heroes and villains.

These adventures added a unique interactive element by interrupting the story when one of the heroes receives a distress call on his or her M.U.G. device (that’s Multi-Use Gadget) – and inviting the reader to help the hero respond. This subtle form of “edutainment” gently quizzed the player – making sure the lessons were coming through while making him or her feel like a part of the adventure.

The Smile Squad Headquarters website hosted the content and formed the hub of the platform. The website also offered children the chance to become further invested in the Smile Squad concept by creating their own heroes based on themselves. These new recruits would be posted on the website for others to see – and a visitor could download a unique printable trading card featuring his or her hero as well.

The site also featured interactive games, art activities, a behind-the-scenes peek at character sketches, video tutorials for the card game and more.

As a company in the business of preventive care, it makes sense for Delta Dental to invest in encouraging positive dental health habits early on knowing there’s a good chance people will develop lifelong good habits as a result.

Meyocks’ approach to developing a content platform follows a similar logic. Invest in its potential. Make the concept work within the chosen mediums, but don’t limit the concept to those mediums.

The Smile Squad concept was a daring approach for a dental insurance company to take – and its creative success is perhaps best measured by the variety of imaginative ideas for extensions that emerged from the initial platform post-launch. By developing a rich reservoir of content upfront, brands can enjoy a concept with the potential to take on a life of its own.


It’s All Fun & Games, And Then Somebody Gets Healthy

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014 | Written by Chad Baker

The Delta Dental Plans Association puts oral health education near the top of its “to do” list – and a significant portion of this effort is aimed at children. One typical strategy is to empower parents to teach good oral health habits to their kids. However, Meyocks figured there had to be a better way to make education more engaging for the kids themselves. A brochure wasn’t going to cut it.

Now you’ll probably never hear a kid ask his or her parents, “Do you want to teach me about positive oral health habits and preventive care?” You’re more likely, however, to hear a kid ask, “Do you want to play a game?”

From this insight, The Smile SquadTM was born.

A card game format offered many advantages. From a logistics perspective, playing cards are relatively inexpensive to produce and easy to deliver – whether given out to attendees at sponsored sporting events, dropped in swag-bags at tradeshows or distributed from dentist to patient.

From a content perspective, the format allowed us to break down the many different educational topics we wanted to touch on into distinct bite-size (pun intended) pieces. Plus, the gameplay mechanics could directly reinforce the message by encouraging children to use positive actions to “defeat” negative habits and health conditions.

Knowing children were the primary audience, we decided to draw our inspiration from the superhero genre. And as our team of copywriters and designers dug in and started creating content, we felt like kids in a candy store. (A sugar-free candy store, of course.)

We decided that four main heroes would makeup the Smile Squad team. Each would represent a positive personal habit – brushing, flossing, using fluoride toothpaste and eating right. The heroes would do battle with the Mouth Marauders – a collection of fourteen villains each associated with an unhealthy habit or a symptom of poor oral health. Individual action cards were used to convey more granular information, such as how often to brush, or how much toothpaste to use.

We knew from the beginning, however, that the playable card game was only the first deliverable. A strong concept must live beyond its initial medium – and it was critical that we approach this not as a distinct project, but as a platform for content.

In part two of this article, we’ll examine some of the other ways The Meyocks Group team brought the Smile Squad concept to life.


Agriculture Marketing Yields Awards For The Meyocks Group

Thursday, February 13th, 2014 | Written by Doug Jeske

The Meyocks Group was honored to receive six awards on behalf of its clients at the Region III Best of NAMA (National Agri-Marketing Association) awards program held in Minneapolis on January 30, 2014. The program recognizes the best work in agricultural marketing and communications among ag businesses and marketing firms in Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota and South Dakota – winning entries will move on to national competition. The Meyocks Group has been a long-time supporter of NAMA.



First Place, Spread Ad Series – “Agriculture Works Here Phase II Series”
A series of print ads that focused on the various planks of the FCSAmerica value proposition: its cooperative business model, commitment to serving its customers through both good times and challenging times, and its agricultural expertise.

First Place, Persuasive Writing, “Crop Insurance Economic Impact”
An economic study of the effects that crop insurance payments have beyond the farm gate in supporting rural communities and regional cities throughout the FCSAmerica geography. This study was the basis for a collection of op-ed pieces in daily papers throughout the four-state area.

Merit, Single Spread Ads – “We Have an Application”
This spread ad ran in a variety of agricultural publications and focused on FCSAmerica’s cooperative business model – its customers are its owners.

Farm Credit East

First Place, Less-than-Page Ad Series – “Cycles”
A series of print ads that ran in several agricultural publications and focused on the lender’s long-term commitment to agriculture. Through the ups and downs of the agricultural economy, Farm Credit East has continued to serve agriculture.

Merit, Single Page Ads – “Best of Times”
A print ad that focused on the lender’s long-term commitment to agriculture. Through the ups and downs of the agricultural economy, Farm Credit East has continued to serve agriculture.

Future Farmers of America

First Place, brochures, catalogs, etc. – “Enrichment Center Brochure”
A communication piece distributed to prospective agri-business donors outlining the benefits and importance of retiring the remaining debt of the FFA enrichment center to achieve the greater mission of the Iowa FFA Foundation and Iowa FFA Association.

First place and merit entries all advance to the national competition. View the complete list of winners.


Timely Study Shows Crop Insurance Delivers Economic Benefit Far Beyond the Farm

Thursday, February 6th, 2014 | Written by Ken Benkstein

Since Congress enacted major improvements in the early 2000s, the federal crop insurance program has become American farmers’ preferred risk management tool.

Corn and soybean farmers invest $400 to $700 an acre for land costs and required inputs before the new plants even germinate. For a 500-acre commercial farm, those costs total $200,000 to $350,000 each year. Without crop insurance, there’s no guarantee they will cover those costs and be able to stay in business for another year if disaster strikes.

Our client, Farm Credit Services of America (FCSAmerica), is an agricultural lender in Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming, and recognizes that crop insurance helps customers manage weather and price-related risk. So the financial cooperative has become one of the leading supporters of crop insurance as well.

Target of Criticism
Crop insurance also is a prime target for critics, especially after major weather disasters in back-to-back years – flooding in 2011, and the great drought of 2012 – that brought indemnity payments to record levels. Since the Federal government is looking to reduce the nation’s budget deficits, crop insurance might be a potential choice for cuts.

The discussion about the future of the Federal crop insurance program has focused almost exclusively on the effects on the farm. FCSAmerica knows that indemnity payments can replace at least some of the crop receipts that disappear when disaster strikes, enabling farmers to buy inputs for the next year’s crop. Much of that money flows into rural and regional communities to support Main Street business and local government services. But The Meyocks Group could find no existing studies on the off-farm economic impact of crop insurance payments.

To fill the information void, we proposed that FCSAmerica underwrite a research project by a team of economists at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln to develop economic impact information for its four-state area, both on and off the farm. Our client agreed.

We wanted to reach two key audiences with the research findings: opinion leaders who help set crop insurance policy, and farm and ranch business operators in FCSAmerica’s territory. To do that, we distributed the project report and supporting materials to agricultural and general media, federal legislators and staffs serving the four-state region, and to non-government agricultural organizations.

One key finding from the study was consistently called out in news coverage: “… (I)ndemnity payments generated off-farm economic impact of nearly $2.2 billion across Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming. That figure includes $721 million of labor income that preserved 20,900 off-farm jobs in the region.”

The report generated widespread media coverage, including articles in daily and community newspapers and over the airwaves. Key newspapers published op-ed articles. Trade media reported results in articles and blogs.

Finally, the “economic impact/job preservation” finding has been repeated in multiple communications to congressional leaders. The agriculture community has used the report frequently, as these comments from trade and producer organizations suggest:

  • “great information and the timing is perfect… will definitely be using this study when talking to folks on the Hill!”
  • “good report … this helps to balance negative stories.”
  • “appreciate the contribution to the debate that is crop insurance… good to see numbers in support of the program.”

Meet the Meyocks PR Intern

Monday, February 3rd, 2014 | Written by Erin Austin

Hi, there! I’m Erin, and if I would have written this blog post the day I started at The Meyocks Group, I would have been able to say something like, “I’m the newest of the office newbs!” But a month has gone by, and I’ve passed through the steps of agency initiation: winning steaks at the annual holiday raffle, sending an important email with a typo, bringing family photos to the office after multiple co-workers joked about the barren desk and walls of my cube… I’ve been here a month, and even though I still check four kitchen drawers before I can find a fork, I feel like part of The Meyocks Group team.

More specifically, I’m part of the public relations team at Meyocks. One of my first assignments in December was building a media list of “mommy bloggers” to invite to a client event. When I declared public relations major as a Drake University freshman, I don’t think I ever could have imagined the scope (or the fun) of tasks I would take on in the next four years.

That’s right—four years—I’m a second-semester senior. I’ll graduate from Drake in May, and I’ll be honest: I have no clue what’s next. As this is my fifth internship, I’ve got a solid collection of experience and a hefty chunk of LinkedIn connections to help me find a job post-grad, but since I’ve really enjoyed every type of PR work I’ve done, it’s tough to settle on any specific function or industry. That’s just one thing I love about The Meyocks Group: the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of the agency atmosphere!


Giving an 80-year-old a makeover.

Monday, January 27th, 2014 | Written by Jim Head

The Meyocks Group has worked with Firestone nearly 10 years now – the relationship doesn’t feel nearly that long.

Firestone is one of agriculture’s most iconic brands – it was Harvey Firestone, after all, who introduced the first pneumatic tractor tire in 1932.

Prior to our relationship, Firestone was one of those accounts we were watching – and coveted. The creative from the previous marketing firm relied heavily on borrowed interest, and didn’t reflect the inherent strength of the brand or the hard-working nature of those who chose it – at least that was how we viewed it.

Somewhere along the line, the brand had lost its mojo. So when The Meyocks Group was given the opportunity to share our thinking, Firestone witnessed an outpouring of creative concepts and ideas.

What emerged was a concept involving just two words – Kick Dirt – that embodied the leadership, the attitude, the strength and the power of the Firestone farm tire brand. The words, which applied to the internal Firestone audience as well as to our targeted producers, were accompanied by a bold visual of a farm tire, with “dirty” treads, that reflected the brand’s grit and toughness.

The “dirty tire” look has become an integral part of the Firestone tire campaign and came from an insight: A farmer told his son (who happened to be a Meyocks art director) that he didn’t understand why farm tire companies always showed their tires so squeaky clean because, “That’s not how we see them.”

We listened. And we continue to talk to farmers and tire dealers for insights in our work with Firestone today.

All of the marketing communications for Firestone reflect the Kick Dirt attitude as well as the brand’s status as the “Leader in the Field.”

We are proud of our relationship with the Firestone team and the work we’ve accomplished together. Most importantly we are proud of the results of our work, including a brand preference increase of more than 12%. Not bad for an 80-year-old.


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