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News

May 18, 2020

Is Hand-Shaking Gone Forever?

Many renowned healthcare experts from all over the world are predicting the end of the handshake, our most universal and certainly most American of all business greetings, even after the current pandemic is under control. Their thinking may be that this is an unnecessary and […]
April 28, 2020

Telehealth: Developing, Practicing & Communicating During COVID-19 & Beyond

April 22, 2020

SmartBank secures $240 million in loans for small businesses

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – April 22, 2020 – SmartBank has been working diligently over the past two weeks on behalf of local small businesses in their fight to survive the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, the bank has processed approximately 1,700 loan applications and […]
April 20, 2020

How Small Businesses Can Survive Amid COVID-19

The coronavirus outbreak is challenging all aspects of our lives. From working at home to social distancing from our peers, everyone is trying to figure out how to adjust their way of life to the times we are living in. Small businesses have rapidly had […]
April 3, 2020

COVID-19 & Knoxville Business Webinar

We spoke to a panel of local business leaders to discuss how businesses are surviving the COVID-19 pandemic. The panel included Mike Turner, CEO,COO, and President of Turner Homes, George Ewart, Principal of George Ewart Architect, Mary Kellogg-Joslyn, President and COO of Titanic Museum Attractions, […]
April 3, 2020

How to Engage Patients in Teledentistry

Dentists have been advised to close their offices to all but emergency care during the global COVID-19 pandemic, but that doesn’t mean emergency visits are the only ones that can take place. Teledentistry is one of the best ways to maintain your patient care continuum […]
April 3, 2020

How to Engage Patients in Telehealth

As you are keenly aware, interruptions to the healthcare delivery system caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic have resulted in the growth and expansion of telehealth. Under a special COVID-19 waiver, Medicare will now reimburse for telehealth services regardless of where the beneficiary is located. […]
March 27, 2020

10 Admissions Strategies that Colleges and Universities Need to Adopt in the Face of the Coronavirus

College campuses are eerily quiet in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic—and the fear is that quiet could usher in an even quieter campus come fall. With the traditional sea of spring visits to colleges and universities across America canceled, the challenges of higher-ed recruiting […]
March 20, 2020

Memo concerning employer response to infection in workforce and layoffs

When anxieties are at an all-time high, communication is critical. The balance between taking care of your loved ones and yourself while maintaining your business and your employees is incredibly challenging. As COVID-19 continues to spread, the probability that one of your employees will be […]
March 18, 2020

Responding to COVID-19

During this ever-changing and challenging time, many business owners and organizations have been focused on external messaging. The need to explain changes or address concerns to customers and other key external audiences has been extremely important. However, internal messaging – the key information you should […]
March 17, 2020

What Considerations Should Drive a Rebranding Initiative?

Our firm seems to be more involved than ever in helping our clients rebrand themselves these days. There are numerous reasons to consider doing this (or not), but changing or refreshing your brand should only take place after you have weighed all the advantages, disadvantages […]
March 2, 2020

SmartFinancial, Inc. completes acquisition of Progressive Financial Group, Inc.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – March 2, 2020 – SmartFinancial, Inc., Knoxville, Tennessee (“SmartFinancial”) (Nasdaq: SMBK), parent company of SmartBank, today announced the completion of its previously-announced acquisition of Progressive Financial Group, Inc. (“Progressive”), and Progressive’s wholly owned bank subsidiary, Progressive Savings Bank. Effective March 1, 2020, Progressive […]
February 20, 2020

Local Olympian opens Knoxville’s only year-round, indoor swim school

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Feb. 20, 2020 – SafeSplash Swim School will celebrate its grand opening this Saturday, Feb. 22, at 2 p.m. The Knoxville swim school is owned by Olympian and Knoxville native, Davis Tarwater. Tarwater won a gold medal for the 4×200-meter freestyle relay at the 2012 Summer […]
February 17, 2020

The Super Bowl Proves Integrated Marketing is a Great Call

Advertisers prepare all year for their 30-60 second spot during the big game – and rightly so with a price point starting at $5 million. In the days of old, people gathered around the water-cooler on Monday morning excited to talk about their favorite Super […]
February 11, 2020

Titanic “LEGO® Boy” returns to East Tennessee for premiere of documentary “How Titanic Became My Lifeboat”

Web: www.titanicpigeonforge.com Media resources (including photos):  www.titanicpigeonforge.com/media “How Titanic Became My Lifeboat” documentary trailer: https://vimeo.com/389069471   FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Feb. 11, 2020   A life changing experience – Titanic “LEGO® Boy” returns to East Tennessee for premiere of documentary “How Titanic Became My Lifeboat” […]
January 20, 2020

Non-profit Organizations Must Think and Act Strategically

In working with many non-profit organizations over the years, our key learnings include the importance of thinking and acting strategically, having a true marketing/outreach plan that you commit to, and designing a measurable quarterly “playbook” to keep that plan moving along on track. A good […]
December 17, 2019

What is Trending in Marketing?

U.S. businesses share some commonalities relative to how they are focusing their efforts and spending their marketing dollars these days. Here are some trends we are seeing: For the past several years, a majority of companies have been focused primarily on marketing to their existing […]
November 18, 2019

The Holy Grail – Customer Acquisition and Loyalty

What does every business want more than anything else?  To attract and keep good customers forever! But that is easier said than done, right?  Understanding how to communicate with your customers throughout all stages of the customer lifecycle is more critical than ever, particularly as […]
November 16, 2019

Former Inmate Turned CEO and Philanthropist Launches Foundation Focused on Prison Reform

Josh Smith forms 4th Purpose Foundation, dedicates $8 Million to help make prison a place of transformation KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Nov. 16, 2019 – Entrepreneur and philanthropist Josh Smith announces the launch of 4th Purpose Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to helping make prison a place of […]
October 14, 2019

Millennials and Healthcare Marketing

Why all the talk about Millennials these days?  Simple.  They are America’s largest generation with the greatest spending power, making them the most coveted consumer demographic. It’s time to let go of the stereotypes of these 22-to-38-year-olds as lazy, disloyal and entitled, and recognize their […]
September 16, 2019

Crisis Communications Planning – Take It Seriously!

It is sometimes too easy to let crisis communications fall by the wayside, always taking a back seat to the rigors and constant challenges of the day-to-day operations of a business. However, this could not be more dangerous. We have seen (and worked with) many […]
September 6, 2019

Master Service Companies Announces Sale To Contractor Nation

Media Contact: Tommy Smith 865-567-6211 tsmith@thinkackermann.com MASTER SERVICE COMPANIES ANNOUNCES SALE TO CONTRACTOR NATION FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 27, 2019 KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – August 27, 2019 – Master Service Companies owner Josh Smith on Tuesday announced that he has sold his interest in the region’s […]
September 3, 2019

Blühen Botanicals marks one year anniversary as presenting sponsor of Southern Hemp Expo

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Sept. 3, 2019 – Blühen Botanicals entered the hemp industry in 2018 as presenting sponsor of the Southern Hemp Expo, and the emerging hemp company will be presenting sponsor of the event again in 2019. In its first year, Blühen made significant gains […]
August 19, 2019

Listening Is the Key to Sales Success

A successful sales process is the lifeblood of most businesses. You can have the most innovative product in the world, but if your sales force is not good at getting in the right doors and convincing your prospective customers that they need to buy it, […]
July 15, 2019

Skipping a Step: The Dangers of Neglecting Market Research

Market research is an integral step in a successful business development effort, whether you are part of a start-up, launching a new product or rebranding your business. When you skip out on market research, you miss valuable opportunities that will help your business in the […]
July 10, 2019

Community Connectedness As A Business Strategy

From the July, 10 2019 Knoxville News-Sentinel Market research is an integral step in a successful business development effort, whether you are part of a startup, launching a new product or rebranding your business. When you skip out on market research, you miss valuable opportunities that […]
June 17, 2019

Media Training – Who Needs It?

I believe that most business leaders need to understand – at least at a basic level – how to talk to the news media in both positive and negative situations. Refusing to comment when media attention comes your way is simply not an option. You […]
June 17, 2019

The Millennial Impact on Healthcare

As of 2019, Millennials are the largest and most diverse generation in history, comprised of nearly 73 million people aged 22 to 37. Known for being digital natives, almost 100 percent of Millennials have a smart phone and use popular social media platforms such as […]
June 5, 2019

Public Health and Social Marketing: Working Against Misinformation for the Greater Good

Misinformation is becoming one of the greatest public health concerns of our time. Thanks to the meteoric rise of alternative media platforms and social media influencers, the thinning of credible information gatekeepers and a growing mistrust in government and traditional media, we now find ourselves […]
May 31, 2019

Cybersecurity Advice for Physicians and Healthcare Leaders

As the consumerization of healthcare allows patients to think more about the value of their care, efficiency of service becomes an even greater priority when deciding where to receive care. Physician groups, dentists, and hospital networks are being driven to evaluate the quality of service, […]