AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

One-Minute MarketerThe Pandemic Parade

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The Pandemic Parade

Thanksgiving is not canceled, but you know, these are crazy times.

In the past 90 years, nothing has stopped the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in its tracks except for COVID-19. The event, like so many entertainment and sporting events, is now a re-imagined TV-only spectacle. Macy’s has cut the parade’s participants down by 75%, and it is being taped over several days.

Many retailers such as Best Buy, Walmart and Target are now closing stores for Thanksgiving Day. COVID-19 is changing things, but the real question is: Are these temporary changes or long-term fundamental adjustments that will not change back after the virus has been contained?

The NBA did a fantastic job managing the virus and had a successful, safe season. I hadn’t watched the NBA since Jordan left the game, but thanks to all the promotion, I found a renewed interest in the game and began watching and cheering again.

As Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, says, “The coronavirus is not going to just disappear. We must learn to manage it.”

Macy’s and the NBA found creative ways to manage the virus and return to some level of business normalcy. Finding our own ways to manage the remainder of 2020 and into 2021 is our battle cry for the fourth quarter. We are thankful that our scientist and medical experts are on the job, working to help us manage this challenge we are all facing.

Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.