by Jennifer Stauss, Award-winning Public Relations & Digital Media Strategist
For First National Bank of Nebraska, the largest privately owned bank in the United States, I developed, executed and measured integrated digital communications campaigns that helped humanize the banking experience for current and prospective customers – connecting them with the bank in meaningful ways with the goal of driving new customer development and existing customer retention across the bank’s seven state service area.
While at Swanson Russell (a leading PR firm), I developed and executed comprehensive strategic public relations, media relations, social media relations and influencer relations plans and tactics for national consumer product launches. I also provided strategic oversight, planning and counsel for all public relations staff and clients – I secured and retained high-profile clients such as Purina Mills, Creighton University Medical Center, Sergeant’s Pet Care Products, Wolfe Eye Clinic and Physicians Mutual.
As the founder of SMAC! Sock Monkeys Against Cancer, a social enterprise I created that provided a “creature comfort” (a stuffed animal SMAC! monkey) to those with/impacted by cancer. Beginning with just a concept, I successfully raised $35,000 through the crowdfunding platform StartSomeGood to raise money to jump start SMAC! operations. At that time, the SMAC! campaign opened with the highest-earning first day in the history of StartSomeGood, raising over $5,000 within 24 hours. To date, more than 3,000 SMAC! monkeys are comforting cancer patients across the globe.
While at Ervin & Smith (an Omaha PR firm), I created and executed highly creative and successful public relations campaigns for wide variety of clients, including TD Ameritrade, Securities America, HearthStone Homes, Pinnacle Sports and 21st Century Systems, Inc.
Making full use of my background as a television reporter, I secured top-tier media placements for then lesser-known clients, including in Reuters as well as on Bloomberg TV and the online version of the Wall Street Journal.
As Mayoral Press Secretary/Communications Director, I coordinated and responded to the media on behalf of the mayor and 16 city departments. Moreover, I learned Mayor Daub’s voice and composed the mayor’s annual city budget presentations, State of the City addresses, speeches, media statements and more. Due to my success working in his office and for the city’s 16 departments, I served as Communications Director during Mayor Daub’s re-election campaign.
Working as a television reporter at KMTV, I acquired a keen sense of story-telling in a concise format. Many of my assignments required me to translate complex issues into understandable stories for wide audiences. Moreover, as a television personality, I Iearned to successfully work under extreme deadlines and pressure. This job also helped me to become an excellent public speaker.