20 years ago, Co-founders Tony Pearman and Todd Marcum teamed up to create Access Advertising & PR. The rest, as they say, is history. After digging through our basement for archival video footage and print pieces long forgotten, we developed the following 20 for 20 video series to review the last two decades of client experiences and campaign successes.
We’ll be releasing one video every weekday for the entire month!
Thank you to all of the clients who provided us these opportunities and to our partners over the years who have helped us tell these stories.
For all 20 years that Access has been in business, we have focused our service efforts on child abuse prevention in the region by supporting our friends at Children’s Trust Roanoke Valley. From print pieces to full on guerilla campaigns, the Access team has been one hundred percent committed to Children’s Trust for the last two decades and will continue to support their vital mission for as long as we are able. We invite you to learn more about Children’s Trust and its incredible work at www.roact.org.
AmRhein’s Winery was a new venture for the prominent jewelry producer and the owner brought on Access to design its first labels. The opportunity to team up with talented artist Kathleen Lunsford resulted in Access’ first national ADDY award, which we happily accepted and promptly attributed to Lunsford’s beautiful work!
Inspired by the rebirth of the surrounding Gainsboro neighborhood, a movement to revitalize the Dumas Center sought to save the historic and culturally significant hotel. Described by the Roanoke Times as “a hotel and a focal point for black culture in a segregated Roanoke,” the crumbling Dumas Center once hosted the likes of Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington as guests. Access’ award winning work to bolster support for the project is fondly remembered today for its imagery and inspired messaging.
Virginia Tech, “Invent the Future”
Access partners with many of our region’s higher education institutions, none more perhaps than Virginia Tech. So when VT called with the challenge of completing a one billion dollar capital campaign, light bulbs began to turn on in our designer’s creative minds. Lots of them. The ‘Invent the Future’ capital campaign was a success for Virginia Tech and included a number of beautiful collateral pieces that remain showcase pieces for the Access design team.
Thanks to an introduction from our friends at the Feedback agency in Richmond, VA, Access has enjoyed a long relationship with the Vision Council. The eye wear industry association represents manufacturers and suppliers of the optical industry, while serving as the global voice for vision care products and services. Throughout the years we’ve had the great fortune of creating high impact creative campaigns, generating record breaking impressions and developing a beautiful website. You might say, we helped bring the mission of the Vision Council into focus. Of course hindsight is 20/20, but we think the work is worth taking a closer look through our 20-for-20 lens.
Carpet Factory Outlet
Low budget doesn’t have to mean low quality. Case in point, Access’ work with Carpet Factory Outlet. What the budget lacked, Carpet Factory Outlet more than made up for by providing us a ton of creative freedom. The end results were award winning television spots that captured attention, drove sales and didn’t break the bank.
National D-Day Memorial
Throughout the last 20 years, Access has had the opportunity to be on the ground floor of projects that have impacted our community and our nation. The National D-Day Memorial commemorating one of the most pivotal battles of World War II is certainly one of those. Constructed in nearby Bedford, Virginia, a community that proportionally suffered the nation’s severest D-Day losses, a young Access’ agency answered the call to develop a marketing campaign with emotional creative and daring strategy. Dedicated on June 6th, 2001 by president George W. Bush, the National D-Day Memorial will always hold a special place in our collective Access hearts.
AIG Hiring Drive
On occasion projects grow and evolve to meet the client’s goals. That was certainly the case when AIG approached Access with a press release about seeking new hires. After speaking with the insurance organization and identifying goals, it was clear that a simple press release just wasn’t going to cut it. And that is how the 15 city Hiring Drive bus tour was born. A public relations campaign of epic magnitude, the Hiring Drive broke social media impression records and generated a ton of earned media results.
Virginia Western Community College
Working with the team at Virginia Western Community College has stretched our imagination and allowed the entire Access team to exercise our creative minds. The unique campaigns that have resulted are fun, unique and most importantly they have led to significant increases in enrollment.
Virginia’s Blue Ridge
Everyone at Access loves this beautiful region we call home, so it’s no surprise that when the opportunity to support the convention and visitors bureau came around, we were thrilled to go all in. We teamed up with Mikula|Harris to produce campaigns featuring stunning video courtesy of Dave Perry Cinematographer, LLC, beautiful creative, and a robust content marketing and amplification strategy. Visit Virginia’s Blue Ridge campaigns are truly labors of love, and the results for the region have been amazing.
When the Navy selected Roanoke as one of 15 cities for its Navy Week outreach, it was all hands on deck at Access. We pulled up anchor and set sail on a major Public Relations campaign to generate, coordinate, plan and promote 7 days of events to highlight the Navy’s mission, capabilities and people. Navy Week relies entirely on traditional PR, media relations and community collaborations. Access was selected to serve as the In-City Planner (ICP) tasked with directing all PR planning and connecting Navy planners to community, business, and non-profit leaders.
One of the most exciting projects we have had the opportunity to work on took place when Guertin Brothers decided to launch their own jewelry line, per Amoré. With amazing photography from Boyd Pearman Photography, the brand was launched at JCK, the largest jewelry show in the world.
Each and every day, our amazing clients provide us with opportunities to stretch our creative minds. So when the Inorganic Ventures team was ready to unveil a new innovative packaging technology and gave us complete creative freedom, some wacky ideas unfolded. Inspired by the 1970s Schoolhouse Rock! cartoons, Access created an animated feature titled, Transpiration Frustration.
Salem Avalanche and Red Sox
If there is one thing you know about Todd Marcum, he has a love and passion for baseball. So it should come as no surprise that some of our favorite work over the past 20 years has been for the Salem Red Sox and Salem Avalanche. Not only did these pieces help establish Access in the early days, they also led to some long-lasting friendships.
As many may know, Access Co-founder Todd Marcum is a West Virginia native and passionate Marshall University alumni. So when his alma mater needed an annual report, Access jumped at the opportunity to create a piece to support the university. The piece that resulted is what happens when a big idea is pitched to a movie production company and they actually say yes!
Another early client who took a leap-of-faith with Access in the early years was Roanoke College. Our first capital campaign, the Roanoke College fundraiser proved to be just as beautiful as it was successful. It’s always ‘all hands on deck’ at Access and occasionally for our families as well. That was the case for the campaign celebration, as Tony convinced his dad to help build a six foot sculpture to serve as the gala centerpiece.
When a community movement began to transform the 1920’s era Jefferson High School into the vibrant community arts center we know and love today, Access signed on to help Jefferson Center become a reality. Today, Jefferson Center is a thriving community hub with after-school music education programs, dozens of non-profit tenants and a ton of Grammy Award winning artists now choosing to make Roanoke a stop on their tour. And as it turns out, Access couldn’t stay away. Our renovated office on Patterson is just down the block!
Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport
Limited budget and no time… not a problem! Access’ spot for the Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport took about a week to concept, produce and launch. The quick turnaround and creative effort helped save a direct flight to NYC and showcased Access’ own Gary Gilmore and his reluctant acting/walking skills.
When one of Access’ first clients came calling, Todd and Tony were about two months away from shutting down Access before it ever really got started. A series of television ads for Lewis Gale hospital was one of the duo’s first big jobs and they’ve got the 35mm film to prove it.
Boogie Woogie Man
Sometimes we do the work because we’re true fans of the client and that was certainly the case with ‘Boogie Woogie Man’ Jimmy Valiant. Access Co-founders Tony and Todd are not shy about their reasons for tracking down Valiant and creating award winning work was a close second to the promise of getting in the ring with a legend. Boogie Man, Access loves you brother!