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Wine

New Business Highlight

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New Business Highlight

Last Thursday night, Left Coast Marketing & Design was invited to join the fun at Healdsburg’s newest restaurant, Barrels, Brews, & Bites (B3)! This new spot has a great relaxing, lounge vibe to it creating the perfect atmosphere to spend any time of day, especially our favorite times - brunch and happy hour!  

B3 was established in 2017, by Saundra Kitchen, who had always dreamed of opening her own restaurant. She told us when the time came, there was no doubt that Healdsburg had to be the first (but not last) location to open in the Bay Area. They are bringing forward a new experience that pairs local craft beer and hidden gem wine with savory food pairings that they call a "Trinity Flight." That means, no more splitting up the beer lovers from the wine enthusiasts! The unique concept promised by B3 is a melding of Sonoma County producers and their own "Bite Barons," a term by which their chefs are known, creating the best “sip and savor experience” in Sonoma County.

Join us on a photo journey as we share our experience at B3’s VIP Media Night where they showcased some of their best menu items.

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Our first dish featured a combination of two menu favorites, the Lil’ Cluckers Deviled Eggs Done Right and the Crispy Prosciutto Cups.

B3’s unique take on deviled eggs sure is definitely done right. This small bite packed big flavor with the perfect hint of spice from the jalapeno and seasonings of the egg yolk. Topped with the bacon jam, the dish was sweet and complementary - all together a delicious harmony of flavors.

The Crispy Prosciutto Cups were filled with whipped goat cheese, topped with a sweet berry compote and a spicy glazed jalapeno! Either or both appetizers would make the perfect addition to any happy hour!

 

Barrels, Brews, & Bites adds a creative and colorful touch to their signature dishes with fresh edible flowers! Not simply a decorative addition - they are lightly flavored with hints of citrus orange and tri-spice.

 

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Next, we enjoyed a fresh basket of Red Bird Bakery bread with a trio of house made spreads (from left to right): artichoke, pimento cheese, and smoked salmon. The appetizer paired beautifully with a crisp sparkling wine. Our choices were Rack & Riddle’s Sparkling Rose and Blanc de Blanc - yum!


 

Fun Fact: B3 doesn’t use your average champagne flute to serve their sparkling wines. Sparkling wine flutes are really fun glasses to drink from, but the glass is mostly for show. A number of wine geeks enjoy drinking sparkling wine out of Burgundy glasses to help open up the aromatics of the wine, and that is what you will find at B3.

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We devoured the delectable B Cubed Flat Bread with roasted chicken and cilantro pesto. The light and vibrant fresh flavors paired well with Smith Story’s 2017 Sauvignon Blanc and 2015 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay. We’ll definitely be craving this combination all summer long!

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When you know, you know. B3 has some amazing menu items, but the Elotes were off the chart! They have taken a traditional Mexican street snack and elevated it to stand alongside their other menu items. This comfort food has an elegant presence and something we want to snack on all day every day!

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For dessert, a sweet treat prepared by the Bite Barons offered us a tasty combination of light chocolate cream with berry compote topped with housemade whip.

 

Left Coast Marketing & Design wants to congratulate our friends at B3 on their grand opening and happily welcome them as a part of the Healdsburg family. We want to wish you the best of luck! 

 

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LEFT COAST MARKETING CELEBRATES 10 YEARS! Join us as we look back...

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LEFT COAST MARKETING CELEBRATES 10 YEARS! Join us as we look back...

It’s hard to believe but Left Coast Marketing & Design is celebrating it’s 10 year anniversary this month! It seems like yesterday that we launched our first client website selling imported wine online and producing photography and other digital media to support the sales effort. Does anyone remember what was happening in March of 2008? Well things weren’t exactly bright and rosy as our economy was on the brink of disaster, but we had no idea that the worst was yet to come. A great recession, housing crisis, and a global market meltdown later...we finally made it through the gauntlet. To say the least it has been a wild ride as a small business here on the Left Coast with lots of peaks and valleys...but I am happy to say we are here to stay.

My wife and business partner Stacey is solely responsible for our company being what it is today...without a doubt in her mind she believed that if we put all of our energy into our business and our clients we would make it a HUGE success! Of course, success can be measured in many ways but I always bring it back to our clients...several of which have been with us since we launch back in 2008. We have worked with over 100 clients since 2008 providing creative services to support food and beverage brand & product marketing as well as hospitality, lodging and real estate. We share in our client’s success stories which never gets old as every day is a new day with a new challenge. I think what Stacey and I are most proud of is the talented group of creative people that represent the Left Coast family and the culture that our company has today. We look forward to seeing what the next 10 years bring...

We are not big fans of wordy BLOG posts but for this exercise we wanted to document the timeline of our company’s inception (as well as parts of the prequel) for the very first time. We hope our customers and future customers enjoy reading about the journey...

  • The Prequel Part I -> 2006: Dan co-founded a company called Artisan Media which was a leader in the video marketing space for the food & beverage industry. With co-founder David Elkins they produced documentary style videos with winemakers and culinary professionals broadcasting to a video streaming platform that was gaining quite a bit of attention called YouTube. While videos were so much FUN to make the gigs were few and far between so to make a few extra bucks they starting a photography services called Bottle Shots. LOVE WHAT YOU DO.

  • The Prequel Part II -> 2007: After acquiring 100% ownership of Artisan Media (which in today’s dollars could hardly basically afford you a MacBook Pro) Dan launched a wine industry digital asset management platform called Wine Media Kit. With all of this video and photography we were producing we needed a better way to store and access the files in the global marketplace. Again, we were on to something very big...until a small company called DropBox came up with a pretty darn good solution of their own. PROJECT MANAGEMENT IS IN OUR DNA.

  • The Beginning -> 2008: Left Coast Marketing & Design was founded in March of 2008 by Dan and Stacey Chapin. Anyone who knows us won't be surprised to learn that it was the only name we could agree upon. Our original business model established to provide direct marketing support for an import wine brand -> specifically a dry pomegranate wine from Israel called Rimon Wines. When our client/partner decided to abandon the DTC sales operation we inherited a website and inventory to sell. Of course, this came with a new requirement that we purchase purchase the wine from our customer as a distributor a resell it as a retailer. Let me tell you that sales were great and marketing wine online at that time was a piece of cake! If we only knew what we were getting into...unfortunately we ran out of “pay dirt” for Left Coast Marketing & Design when our business partner stopped importing the wonderful Rimon Wines merged the two companies under LMC umbrella to provide Digital Marketing and media production services. It was at this time we also decided to focus more on creative services and less on software programing. CUSTOMER SERVICE IS OUR #1 SERVICE.

  • The Big Break -> 2012: After bidding on several large projects to help us take the leap...we landed facebook wine marketplace account working with Wine Direct and building a photography studio inside of the Wine Direct warehouse which was originally going to house the Amazon wine marketplace digital media production. In less than 6 months we shot over 1,000 product images  which allowed us to quit our day jobs and focus 100% on our fledgling creative business. There are several mantras that we hold dear at Left Coast Marketing & Design which will be the subject of another BLOG...but back in 2012 we started to develop our CORE VALUES that we hold dear today. LIFE + WORK = BALANCE.

  • Expansion Part I -> 2013: Many of our clients were in need of help to support their sales & marketing initiates beyond our digital media production services. After referring enough of them to other design agencies we decided that it was time to make fulfill our clients needs by expanding our superpowers. We launched print design and custom publishing services. This has been the best decision we made although it was also the first step in taking our business to the next level. CUSTOMER SERVICE IS OUR #1 SERVICE.

  • Diversification -> 2015: As our company grew we saw value in expanding to other industries to bring our ideas and best practices to other small businesses while staying 1-degree of separation from the wine biz. Expanding from the wine industry we found ourselves gravitating to specialty food and beverage, hospitality, retail, and even real estate. What we did not expect is that our knowledge based also expanded and we brought ideas and best practices back to our wine industry clients. It is this diversification coupled with deep experience in knowledge within the wine industry niche that forged the creative superpowers that we have today. LOVE WHO YOU WORK WITH.

  • Expansion Part II -> 2016: Following our Core Value #1 that CUSTOMER SERVICE IS OUR #1 SERVICE we finally added Website Design & Development to our list of service offerings in order to solidify our holistic marketing and creative service value proposition. This new offering fit into our company culture so naturally it seemed to be the piece we were missing all along. And the best part...we welcomed Tony Immordino from Wine Minded Design and his right hand man Stan Tausan into the Left Coast team! CUSTOMER SERVICE IS OUR #1 SERVICE.

  • Onward and Upward -> 2017 through to Today: Our team started to grow and our core team members began to spread their wings! Left Coast Marketing & Design's veteran graphic designer Chelsea Bond was promoted to Lead Designer for the print design portfolio. Sarah Seabourne, SSU graduate, has spearheaded the new chapter of Digital Marketing Services. Jon Strachan our newest member, is project manager and quarterback when it comes to organization and getting the job done. He also has a design background which lens itself well to understand the creative process and our clients needs. Everyone has a different set of superpowers so I will save that for another BLOG post...but in closing we just want to say THANK YOU to all of our clients, many of whom are still with us since the early days, and we are so grateful for the opportunities we have been blessed with the the amazing team that carries the Left Coast Marketing & Design flag today. LIFE + WORK = BALANCE.

  • OK...that's it. Don't forget to RSVP to our 10 year Anniversary party and we hope to see you there!!

 

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Client Spotlight: Frank Family Vineyards

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Client Spotlight: Frank Family Vineyards

Located in Napa Valley's historic Larkmead Winery, Frank Family Vineyards offers handcrafted wines that live up to the heritage of the land. Frank Family Vineyards is one of the most sought after tasting rooms in the Napa Valley. It has been voted best tasting room in the Napa Valley for 8 years in a row in the bay area's A-List competition.

Frank Family Vineyards has been a Left Coast Marketing client since September of 2016 and came to us with a vision of creating a custom magazine to offer their wine club members twice a month. Design and Custom Publishing, being our area of expertise, we were excited to turn this vision into reality. The custom magazine features; tasting notes for current wine releases, articles about winery staff and events wine pairing recipes and much more. This custom magazine was, and is, very important to everyone here on the Left Coast Marketing team, and is one of our favorite creative projects to produce.

During the end of 2017 Frank Family Vineyards created a blog feature that their wine club members really took to, the blog is a new way for their customers to connect with the winery; and a way for Frank Family to deliver a little bit of  Napa Valley into their homes. Frank Family plans to carry this fun, and engaging marketing initiative into 2018. Check out the Frank Family Blog here!

We have loved working with Lauren who is the Marketing Coordinator at Frank Family, when asked what their 2019 marketing goals are, she responded by saying, “All roads point to our 25th Anniversary. Our 2018 marketing is built around that—since our doors opened for business in 1993, we have done so much to create more than a place; more than a wine. We have created memories, experiences, and connections with people all over the world to last a lifetime. Rich and Leslie Frank are visionaries—they seek greatness in all that they do, down to every last detail. Todd Graff, General Manager and Winemaker, makes the vision into a reality. Our marketing this year will highlight how far we have come, as well as look forward to the next 25 years!” We love that so much,  congrats on 25 years from everyone here at Left Coast Marketing. 

Frank Family Vineyards continues to be one of our favorite clients here at Left Coast Marketing and we look forward to many more creative projects with them in the years to come.

By Sarah Seabourne

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Tech Report: Digital Asset Management

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What the heck is "Digital Asset Management" and why do we bring this up in the context of our Creative Services BLOG? Well the answer is simple: we create lots of wonderful things for our clients and we need to store them, share them and sometimes present them as part of our portfolio for new clients. I am truly amazed how much the world of Digital Asset Management (DAM) has evolved in the last decade. And when I find myself speaking in terms of "decades" I am equally shocked at how time flies! But I digress.....below is a brief history of how Digital Asset Management has evolved for Left Coast Marketing.

Back in 2008, we embarked to develop a platform to host the digital media that we were producing for various clients and in particular wineries. We recognized a challenge in storing the large photography and video assets that our clients had commissioned us to produce as part of their brand marketing investment. We also recognized that our clients had other assets that needed to be stored and shared with their sales team spread across the country. It was then that the "Wine Media Kit" was born...a Digital Asset Management platform that allowed our clients to host media assets that we produced as well as other creative assets (i.e. design files) that we may or may not have produced for them. We were successful at identifying and addressing the needs of our clients in this area but were not as successful in selecting the right software development partner so we had to scrap the "buggy" system within a year as it became too costly to support.

Fast forward 4 years toward the end of 2012 when we decided to take another crack at it, this time selecting an existing platform (Microsoft Sharepoint) which we could simply configure for our specific needs vs. custom software that was cost prohibitive to build and maintain. This new platform which was now called the "Artisan Cloud" worked great and we were able to host all forms of sales POS and other digital marketing collateral, including the various types of creative assets that we build for our clients: business cards, rack cards, sell sheets, tech sheets, shelf talkers, bottle neckers, case cards, wine club newsletters, etc. We were charging a nominal monthly hosting fee and guess what?! Our clients started paying for us to host their digital assets. Win-Win, right?

What we found after the first few months of was quite surprising...internally our team began using a still relatively unknown platform called DropBox as part of our design workflow before uploading to the Artisan Cloud. Once uploaded our clients would login and download the assets...to their personal or company DropBox folder. Yes indeed, after polling a few of our customers we found that we were all using DropBox and after some serious contemplation we decided to shut down the Artisan Cloud which was still costly to maintain and formally adopt DropBox for asset management system. It was painful to lose a part of our business revenue stream but it was absolutely the right decision to make for our clients. 

Being a company with a culture for continuous improvement we strayed away from DropBox once or twice only to come back to it as the seamless solution that now integrates with our various other technology platforms including Insightly CRM & Project Management that is core to our creative services work flow. Our clients decide what they need and want and we do our best to deliver services and products to support that following the path of least resistance whenever possible. It all goes back to our Core Values, and particularly (1) Customer Service is our #1 service and (2) Project Management is in our DNA. As part of our company culture we will always look to improve our people, processes & technology but when it ain't broke, why fix it? When we started we wanted to be a technology company that also provided creative services for our clients. Now we are a Creative Services Agency that simply leverages the best of breed technology in order to provide top notch customer service. Funny how life can flip everything upside down, especially for an old guy like me.

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Left Coast Marketing Adds Exciting New Services and Key Team Members

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Left Coast Marketing Adds Exciting New Services and Key Team Members

Left Coast Marketing has expanded its service offerings to include digital marketing (email marketing, web and social media content publishing), graphic design, printing and custom publishing services via Wine Country Lifestyle Magazine - a custom magazine, tailored to wine clubs. Left Coast Marketing is also excited to announce the addition of new team members, including Marcy Joyce as Creative Services Manager and Sue Straight to lead the Digital Marketing division.

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