/ Feature Story

The Power of Trust

A popular 1927 song that goes, "I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream," argues that people scream for ice cream, but they should also scream for tacos. And agriculture.

These are two areas that Albert Teel of the Greeley Tribune has helped develop marketing plans for that better drive customers toward their businesses, and he maintains relationships with them many years later.

Marketing and advertising can be interesting to even the uninterested.

Teel did not get to choose his title of business development manager at the Tribune, but if he were to name his own, it would be "audience development specialist."

His mission is to connect businesses with the community, and he does this mainly through advertising.

One of his earliest ventures was helping a woman get her taco restaurant off the ground-something that he says brought him great joy.

Through his many years of experience and successes, one might assume the work that Teel does is difficult, but he insinuates otherwise.

"It's getting to know the people before forming a marketing strategy," he said.

Fiddling with an unopened energy drink he previously retrieved from his meticulously clean desk, something that cannot be said about many of the crew members in the newsroom, Teel described how he shared this taco restaurant with the masses. It's more than developing a strategic marketing plan, he said.

"Listening is very important."

Even with the numerous reports people like Teel can run about a community, nothing compares to forming personal relationships and questioning how one can help.

Every audience he deals with is different. There are a lot of statistical data behind each audience, such as which groups have spent the most money on furniture-this is called an audience scan.

Even though tacos and agriculture are drastically different, one common denominator remains: building trust is key.

The Tribune has an inherent level of trust simply because they have been established in Greeley for 146 years. Newer businesses do not have that benefit.

Teel describes trust as a benefit to both him and his customers. This trust helps attract customers to newer businesses and keeps him working with these new businesses.

In the world of advertising, Teel says that the Pareto principle-a rule that says 20 percent of an agency's clients are responsible for 80 percent of their revenue-gets passed around often.

Finding the 20 percent is the result of a little dedication and great networking and communication skills. After all, Swift Communications, parent company of the Tribune, has over 36 publications which Teel gets to work with.

Covering business news in Boulder, Larimer and Weld counties, BizWest reporter Josh Lindenstein says that communicating with different industries is not that difficult.

He has worked with BizWest for nearly three and a half years, and he was a sports writer at the Boulder Daily Camera for nine years.

Lindenstein gets sent many press releases from companies and makes sure to approach each story by thinking of the newsworthiness it provides.

Working with larger companies can be a little more difficult as they will usually have a larger communications staff, he said.

"It might be a little harder to get a hold of some people."

Lindenstein discloses his bias when he says that he wants to have a good relationship with the companies he is reporting on as doing so benefits both parties.

He does not hold it against companies that try too hard-he acknowledges the level of dedication involved in working with the media.

"They have to suck up to the media-be transparent to the community and reach out to the community," he said.

If Lindenstein has the resources to work with a company, he will.
Educating businesses on their conduct with the media can help build trust, Teel explained.

Teel's passion for the community is further evident by his interests to help small businesses.

He enjoys working with the local small business development center in Weld County, the East Colorado SBDC.

At the SBDC, Teel works with the community by educating upcoming businesses about how he can help, and doing so reminds him of the woman's taco business he helped expand.

Cover image courtesy of Wikipedia user xnatedawgx