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Behind the Scenes

June 11, 2019

Scenes from Creative Lab Week

By Jenna Paulus, Public Relations Manager, Deluxe

The week of May 13 to most people was just any other week in May. In Minnesota, Spring was starting to feel like a reality, the snow was FINALLY gone and at Deluxe Headquarters, just outside of St. Paul, Minnesota, small businesses from Searcy, Arkansas were congregating to get a deep dive into marketing tactics with members of the Deluxe Small Business Marketing team.

The week, dubbed “Creative Lab,” was part of Small Business Revolution Season 4 filming. This has become an annual rite of passage for the small businesses that are featured on our $500,000 Main Street Revitalization. It is basically a “boot camp” for small business owners, where our marketing experts explain how we are building their websites, designing logos, embracing payroll services and doing a deep dive into their finances. As Amanda Brinkman, host of Small Business Revolution always says, “It’s bananas!”

For the production crew, most filming takes place in the town of Searcy, but the core of what we do is the marketing for the businesses. Our goal is to help these businesses stand out and thrive when our work is done. Tailoring this work to their specific communities, like Searcy, is a challenge we all relish.

During Creative Lab week, ARganic Woodwork, El Mercado Mexican Grocery Store, Whilma’s Filipino Restaurant, Nooma, Zion Climbing Center and Savor + Sip met with their respective Deluxe experts. They also met with Brinkman, Deluxe’s Chief Brand and Communications Officer and Damon Fieldgate, Vice President of Small Business Services at Deluxe in order to do a deep dive into their financials, to determine what changes they could make to turn a profit.

In addition to a week of learning, the businesses met with their respective season experts, all of whom are located in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. Experts include Kim Bartmann, Minneapolis restaurateur; Lynne Robertson, Owner of Fame Retail; Ann Kim, James Beard Award-winning Minneapolis restaurateur; Stacey Anderson, President of Anytime Fitness; Willie Willette, owner of Willie Willette Works; and, Kathryn Wyatt of Base Camp.

The businesses were lucky enough to come to Minnesota on a week when the weather couldn’t have been more beautiful. During some downtime, they were able to take advantage of some sight-seeing around the Twin Cities, and some even ventured into Wisconsin to check another state off their lists.

Take a look at the photos above for more from Creative Lab week and stay tuned for more updates on our blog, Facebook and Instagram channels as we head back to Searcy in June for the finale shoot. And watch it all come together this fall when Season 4 launches!

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