Our workspaces may have changed, but the way we work really hasn’t. Seven months into working from home, we’re reflecting on the ways we’ve been able to stay connected and build relationships without in-person meetings and a physical office space. Client service is at the core of what we do at Tunheim, even if it looks a little different these days.

Throughout the spring and summer, growth has remained a priority and we’ve taken on quite a few new client relationships without ever meeting in person. A few clients and projects that we have fully onboarded virtually include the Minnesota Homeownership Center, Stay Home Minnesota (#StayHomeMN), Nature’s Way, and FOX 9’s Shine On MN (#ShineOnMN).

Minnesota Homeownership Center

Team Tunheim has been working closely with the Minnesota Homeownership Center for months, and it’s hard to fathom that after months of weekly Zoom meetings and the launch of a second campaign wave we’ve never met face-to-face.

The Minnesota Homeownership Center came to us early on in the WFH era because they had a COVID-related problem to solve: the pandemic was causing an economic downturn that would lead to mass foreclosures, and they wanted to prevent as many as possible.

Since then, we have partnered with the Minnesota Homeownership Center on a two-part integrated digital, earned media and public affairs campaign aimed to drive Minnesotans at risk of losing their homes to foreclosure prevention resources.

We made it a priority to stay in close communication with this team due to the complex work and the fact that we were doing it all virtually. We started out with weekly hour-long Zoom calls and daily email updates on progress. As the relationship strengthened and we got to know each other and our work styles, meetings moved to bi-weekly and emails have moved to an as-needed basis. We’re proud of our work to connect Minnesotans with important resources during this time are looking forward to what’s next with this client, even if it will be months before our first-ever face-to-face meeting.

Stay Home Minnesota (#StayHomeMN)

Tunheim had the opportunity to partner with the State of Minnesota and the office of Governor Walz and Lt. Governor Flanagan on the launch of the #StayHomeMN campaign, highlighting the importance of social distancing to slow the spread of COVID-19. This happened right after our office closed and we were all getting used to the world of Zoom and all things WFH. The campaign needed to launch quickly, and virtual communication tools immediately proved their value as we efficiently rolled out a statewide campaign.

This was a digital project, so it was natural for it to be an early project in our virtual world. The bulk of our work was outreach to influencers, and it was a great way to connect with other Minnesotans having the same experience we were – trying to find a sense of normalcy in their work in the time of COVID-19. The campaign was a success, ending with nearly 200 million impressions of the #StayHomeMN hashtag on Twitter, 12,000+ organic mentions on Instagram, a placement in the Star Tribune and excellent influencer participation from local foodies to coaches and athletes from Minnesota sports teams.

Nature's Way

This past summer, we joined forces with vitamins and dietary supplements brand Nature’s Way to help launch their new product, Alive! Gummy Multivitamin for Teens. Our team—along with one of our IPREX partners, French West Vaughn—executed a multi-faceted media relations campaign that included the creation and distribution of media mailers, comprehensive press materials and more.

Although we never conducted any in-person communications with the Nature’s Way team, we felt consistent reinforcement and connection with the client through regular Zoom meetings and emails.

Our media relations campaign is still running, and we were successfully able to execute all aspects of the campaign from home—including assembling 50 media mailers! The key to our success was frequent and detailed communications. We look forward to continuing our relationship with Nature’s Way as we are embarking on another media relations project for their KiDS and Sambucus lines.

Shine On MN

Early into the new “normal” of the COVID-19 pandemic, local FOX affiliate, FOX 9 (KMSP-TV), came to Tunheim to discuss an event that would bring Minnesotans together for a night of entertainment and giving back from home. The focus was to bring light to a tough situation for many and the challenge was to bring everyone together virtually. 

In April, we teamed up with FOX 9 to bring the first-ever Shine On Minnesota event – a local, star-studded evening of giving, to life. Our team worked closely with FOX 9 to build the event and a social media plan including the creation of a social media content and content calendar, the recruitment and management of local artists and talent, the creation of press materials and media outreach.

From Shine On Minnesota’s inception to the full execution of the virtual broadcast event on May 10, all team onboarding, planning, coordination and execution occurred digitally. The key to success for the event was a strong team collaboration each day with daily team calls, organized emails, clear deliverables and to-dos, and a strong timing and action. Overall, the two-hour Shine On MN broadcast was a great success and featured local bands, artists and musicians, including Yam Haus, Soul Asylum, Dessa, the Minnesota Opera and more, and raised $140,000 that was given to local non-profits including Second Harvest Heartland, Springboard for the Arts and Minnesota Central Kitchen.

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