The Blog and Pony Show

Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Amanda Koenn - 12:42 pm April 15, 2015

Mobilegeddon is Coming April 21. Is your site prepared?

As mobile phones increasingly replace laptops and desktops as the go-to device for internet access, search companies like Google are taking notice. In fact, Google has announced that they are updating their search algorithm with an emphasis on mobile-friendliness.

On April 21, “Mobilegeddon” will hit companies as that new algorithm is initiated. Websites that are considered “mobile-friendly” by Google’s new standards will be favored and move up in the search rankings, while those which don’t comply will be pushed down. In other words, that valuable search ranking your company has worked so hard to earn could be at great risk in the next couple of weeks.

At Schifino Lee, we excel at developing client websites that are not only optimized for search engines but for mobile viewing as well. If you’re worried about how Google’s new algorithm will affect your search rankings, contact us and we’ll be happy to immediately test your website. It’s your best bet for surviving Mobilegeddon.


Heather Fako - 4:18 pm March 9, 2015

Joanna Lord at GIF: Community Over Everything

Last week I had an opportunity to attend a portion of the Gasparilla Interactive Festival. As I listened to Joanna Lord speak about her passions and the growth of her business, it really sparked something in me; Business shouldn’t  just be about products and revenue, but it should also have a large emphasis on community.

If you want a successful business, you need to go the extra mile and do something completely unnatural to increase your growth as a company. Joanna talked about taking risks and empowering everyone to be their best selves.

For Porch, the company she currently works with, she discussed how an employee is chosen randomly each month and they are allotted a certain amount of money to do what they feel will help the company (whether it is an social outing for the employees or it is to bring a speaker in for a day to teach them something new). She said that the title of the person has no relevance in this matter, because everyone has something they can bring to the table.

She stressed how important community is within the company, and to make sure that all employees are happy, which increases their chances at being successful as a whole. Which make sense… if employees are unhappy coming to work; they won’t perform as well and in turn the business will suffer. Therefore, community and employee happiness is key in a successful company.

Schifino Lee - 2:32 pm March 3, 2015

Our Biggest Night Ever at the Tampa Bay American Advertising Awards

Last Thursday night the Schifino Lee team attended the American Advertising Awards Gala (they’ll always be the ADDYs to us) at Port Tampa Bay. We won big, coming home with 13 awards including 7 Golds and 2 “Best of the Bay” trophies. Here’s a list of everything we won:

  • Best of the Bay, Gold, and two Silver awards in Newspaper, Color category for Sweetwater Organic Farm, “Ourganic is Better Organic”
  • Best of the Bay and Gold award in Advertising Industry Self-Promo category for “Be the Santa Toy Drive”
  • Gold award for Gerdau Ameristeel “New NY Bridge” print ad
  • Gold awards in Digital Advertising and Elements of Advertising categories for Ameriflight website and photography
  • Gold award in Integrated Campaigns category for The Powers Company’s “The Power of Un” campaign
  • Gold award in Elements of Advertising category for P&S Transportation photography
  • Silver award in Radio, Campaign category for Lizard Juice
  • Silver award in Television category for Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo’s “London Frightmare” TV commercial

The American Advertising Awards, formerly the ADDYs, is the advertising industry’s largest and most representative competition for creative excellence. It attracts over 40,000 entries every year in local ADDY competitions. Thursday night’s local show was sponsored by AAF Tampa Bay. The winning work now moves on to the district level competition in Orlando on May 2 for a chance to compete at the national level in Las Vegas in June.

Thank you to all of our wonderful clients and production partners! We’re grateful for the opportunities we’ve had to produce excellent work this past year and we’re committed to raising the bar even higher next year.

Schifino Lee - 11:44 am February 26, 2015

Schifino Lee Named Agency of Record for Gasparilla Interactive Festival

Schifino Lee has partnered with the first-ever Gasparilla Interactive Festival (GIF) as Agency of Record and a festival Founder. The GIF festival, to be held on March 6, 2015, is anticipated as the Southeast region’s showcase event for cutting-edge technologies, digital innovation, and entrepreneurial inspiration as well as a long-awaited addition to Tampa Bay’s multi-faceted Gasparilla Arts Month.

Schifino Lee agreed to the pro bono agency partnership with GIF including the creation of branding, logo, print ad campaign, posters, a website, visual designs, broadcast radio, and festival banners. The concept for GIF’s branding evolved out of the festival’s focus on interactivity and connectivity: each part of the logo is autonomous yet, when banded together, creates something greater than each individual part.

“Our commitment to the Gasparilla Interactive Festival aligns with Schifino Lee’s goal to seek out new and innovative creative solutions in the digital world; the fact that it also supports Tampa’s business and creative communities makes our support even more important,” said Paola Schifino, Principal and Co-founder of Schifino Lee. “We are honored and excited to be involved with this inaugural festival and look forward to this event being an integral part of the Gasparilla season.”

In addition to becoming integrated into the Tampa Bay Area’s festival-packed Gasparilla season, March 6, 2015 has been named “Gasparilla Interactive Festival Day” in Hillsborough County by the Hillsborough County Board of Commissioners and District 2 County Commissioner Victor Crist.

The festival features compelling presentations and forums from the brightest minds in emerging technology, interactive media, and disruptive entrepreneurialism. It includes exciting networking events hosted by industry leaders, a keynote speaking series including Faris Yakob, Joanna Lord, and Peter Shankman, two speaker panels, and an expo open to the public.

The Gasparilla Interactive Festival is a community event organized by Gasparilla Interactive Festival Inc., a Florida non-profit organization which was founded by leadership members of the American Advertising Federation and Ad 2 Tampa Bay chapters. It is made possible through the collaboration of Tampa Bay’s public, private, non-profit, and academic institutions including Schifino Lee.

Schifino Lee - 1:25 pm January 29, 2015

Pumping Up a Unique New Fitness Brand

When the former Executive Vice President of Operations at Lifestyle Family Fitness and the founder of Advance Physical Therapy came to Schifino Lee with their innovative vision for a fully integrated fitness concept, we knew just how to whip their brand into shape for a grand opening.

Today’s workout achievers and weekend warriors are desperately looking for a combination of fitness, wellness, and recovery services previously only available to professional athletes. So, we created a name that perfectly captures the path of balance, performance training, recovery, and fitness education on which these individuals would travel to optimal fitness: BODYSSEY.

We brought these 4 fitness pillars and the BODYSSEY brand to life through logo design and brand identity elements, followed by a webpage, collateral, social media support, public relations, and dramatic oversized wall graphics to support their VIP grand opening.

The awareness and buzz we generated resulted in an outstanding event turnout along with strong consumer interest, media coverage, site traffic, and membership signups.

Schifino Lee - 1:16 pm January 9, 2015

Schifino Lee Named Agency of Record for Gasparilla Interactive Festival

The first Gasparilla Interactive Festival will be held on March 6, 2015 as part of Gasparilla Arts Month at Port Tampa Bay, Cruise Terminal 3. The Gasparilla Interactive Festival is Tampa Bay’s showcase for cutting-edge technologies, digital innovation and entrepreneurial inspiration.

The Gasparilla Interactive Festival features compelling presentations and forums from the brightest minds in emerging technology, interactive media, and disruptive entrepreneurialism and includes exciting networking events hosted by industry leaders. The event will have a series of speakers and an expo. Confirmed speakers include Faris Yakob, Joanna Lord, and Peter Shankman. More speakers will be announced in the coming month.

The festival is a community event and is made possible through the collaboration of Tampa Bay’s public, private, non-profit, and academic institutions. Partners of the Gasparilla Interactive Festival include AAF Tampa Bay, Ad 2 Tampa Bay, Hillsborough County, EDI2, Schifino Lee, the University of Tampa, Port Tampa Bay, Visit Tampa Bay, and the Gasparilla International Film Festival.

“Our pro bono commitment to the Gasparilla Interactive Festival shows our dedication to and support of the digital and creative industries in the Tampa Bay area,” Paola Schifino, co-founder of Schifino Lee and the designers of the festival’s logo, website and branding materials.

The festival is organized by the Gasparilla Interactive Festival Inc., a Florida non-profit organization that was founded by leadership members of the American Advertising Federation and Ad 2 Tampa Bay chapters. Founders of the festival include Akerman LLP, de la Peña & Holiday LLP, Hillsborough County, EDI2, Pinstripe Marketing, Port Tampa Bay, Tricycle Studios, Sign-Age, Ad 2 Tampa Bay, and AAF Tampa Bay.

Attendees can register beginning today at an Early Bird rate of $125 or purchase a Founder’s Club membership for $1,000. Founders and sponsors will be invited to an Opening Reception on Thursday, March 5 in the evening. Visit to register and for more information.

Follow the Gasparilla Interactive Festival on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

Schifino Lee - 4:14 pm December 22, 2014

Schifino Lee Takes Ameriflight’s Brand to New Heights

Ameriflight, the world’s largest regional air cargo carrier, looked to Schifino Lee to help them develop a clear and consistent brand which embodied their focus on customer service. In addition, they wanted to feature the true heroes of their business: their people.

Schifino Lee brought these ideals to life with Ameriflight’s new “Above & Beyond” campaign. Original photography featured their mechanics, pilots, and employees front and center. A new Ameriflight website and new collateral explained how Ameriflight’s people go above and beyond in all aspects of their work.

The website was developed around an innovative bottom-to-top parallax design which literally takes visitors from the ground up into the clouds. It also features a dynamic aircraft gallery, interactive route maps, and a media center with company news, videos, and downloads.

The new branding positions Ameriflight as the industry-leading company they truly are. To view the website or find out more about Ameriflight, visit

Schifino Lee - 5:31 pm July 30, 2014

What Netflix’s rise in subscriptions really means

Why the rise of Netflix and other on-demand video services make product placement even more essential.

Netflix’s recent surpassing of 50 million subscribers (the equivalent of approximately 16% of the U.S. population) this week has us thinking. If this is going to be the next primary way to view programming, will traditional video ads still be as affective?

My belief is no. Of the many reasons why people abandon cable and opt for streaming, one of the key motives is the fact that streaming services offer less ads and more content. So if the market heads in the direction where video ads become limited the industry must take full advantage of an age-old strategy; product placement.

This strategy has been used extensively in Netflix’s original programming; most notably “House of Cards”; while on the other hand broadcasting companies have yet to place as high of an importance on this tactic. This will become a monumental advantage for Netflix as streaming becomes the norm. They will gain the ability to outbid such powerful broadcasters as Disney, Time Warner and NBCUniversal for advertising sponsorship due to their programming’s ability to spark more consumer interest in products/ services and promote more action.

Schifino Lee - 3:26 pm July 21, 2014

iBeacon brings light to foggy marketplace

Apple has implemented an indoor proximity system known as iBeacon into the newer generations of their devices.  These tiny, inexpensive, Bluetooth transmitters will provide device users with better location-based information and services; FourSquare and Groupon being examples of benefactors. Since iBeacon must be activated with the downloading of an app, the potential consumers opt in to viewing this content. So, what does this mean for advertisers? Everything.

In addition to making these services better, iBeacon transmitters will (upon app installation) stay alert for transmissions within range pertaining to sales and specials by local vendors. So if a device user were to pass by a beacon in a shop, after 20 seconds of remaining within range the retailer’s app would send the passerby’s device a transmission displaying an ad.

This is incredibly useful technology for advertisers. Those who choose to download the app have voluntarily made themselves susceptible to receiving advertising content. This allows a vendor to attain better engagement. First, the passerby is open to receiving content; second, they have been within a reasonable range of your store for 20 seconds or more. This leads to strategic targeting of people most likely to perform a transaction in your store. Coca Cola is one of the premier brands already strategizing on how to use this technology effectively.

(courtesy of

Schifino Lee - 4:16 pm February 1, 2012

Show Your Best Stuff

Being a small company doesn’t mean you need to look like a small thinker. Cary Showalter came to Schifino Lee to develop a site that could exude the professionalism and personality of his company, ShowTech Solutions. ShowTech was founded by Cary in order to share his extensive IT experience, along with his business expertise, to small business and entrepreneurs that have challenging technological needs.

The new ShowTech website showcases the wide range of services and solutions the company offers; from security & support to complete integration of all your office, mobile and cloud server technologies. The site also contains a blog, allowing current and prospective clients to not only learn about what is happening at ShowTech Solutions, but also current news in the technology industry and in-depth product reviews.

Overall, the new website will effectively inform consumers about what ShowTech Solutions does and how they do it, while also facilitating communication through blog and social media posts. To view the new website, visit