Our Historic Trentham Mansion is One of Maryland's Coolest Spaces

We’re proud to share that our building, the Historic Trentham Mansion, is one of 30 locations chosen for The Daily Record’s first list of Maryland’s Coolest Spaces! Want to know what makes our mansion so cool? Keep reading to find out:

Imagine waking up every day and going to work at an 18th century mansion that is rumored to be haunted by the spirit of a former resident. This unique scenario is a workday reality for the women of Devaney & Associates, a full-service advertising, marketing, and public relations agency in Owings Mills, Maryland. We have been lucky enough to call the timeless Trentham Mansion home since June 2015; however, the historic house still remains a key part of Baltimore County’s architectural history. So, what exactly makes our workspace cool? It begins where most stories do, by looking back at the Trentham Mansion’s fascinating history.

taking a step back in time

The estate was built in 1746, by Reverend Thomas Cradock, on top of the land that was given to him as dowry when he married High Sheriff John Risteau’s daughter, Catherine Risteau. Cradock named the building after the Free School of Trentham in Staffordshire, England, where he had once taught. Besides living in the mansion, the Cradock couple also ran a boarding school for boys on the grounds.

The original home was damaged by a fire in 1857 and rebuilt in 1860; however, the octagonal bathhouse, that still sits at the mansion’s entrance, dates back to 1747 and has been restored to preserve the building’s rich history and design.

The magic D&A Touch

As an agency, we have had the freedom to modify the mansion to fit a business environment and to reflect our style while preserving its history. Our art directors played a key role in personalizing the workspace with custom light fixtures and vibrant color schemes and décor that adorn the walls and floors.

Some interesting aspects in our office include soundproof floral panels in our conference room, a loft with a clawfoot bathtub, and a Sandtown Millworks table made out of wood reclaimed from old Baltimore row houses. Our property also features an outdoor area that has a historic smokehouse with four potbelly stoves, several decks, a fireplace, and a grille. This entertainment space has allowed us to host office events and parties for the community and our clients.

Our resident ghost

And what would a historic mansion be without a ghost that haunts its halls? The ghost is believed to be Catherine Cradock, a descendent of Reverend Thomas Cradock, who was murdered at home by a vagrant who had been residing in the mansion’s barn. While she doesn’t give us much trouble, we have blamed a few bizarre incidents on her presence.

Why we love our mansion

The Historic Trentham Mansion is a special space for many reasons. From its captivating past to its haunted tendencies, the former boarding school turned agency headquarters is a one-of-a-kind building that reflects the personality of the people who inhabit it and the work that we do.

Devaney & Associates Welcomes New Clients to the Family

At Devaney & Associates we specialize in building long-term client relationships. As we usher in the new decade, we also welcome the opportunity to work with new clients. We have had the honor of being tapped by some of the region’s top brands to lead their latest marketing and PR initiatives.

As we start this next chapter, we would like to take a moment to introduce some of our newest clients.

Dunbar security solutions

Dunbar Security Solutions takes safety to the next level. With 360-degree protection, they provide the ultimate security solutions through the fusion of highly skilled staff and state-of-the-art technology. The family-owned business specializes in security for industrial facilities, corporate properties, and premium residential areas.

Dunbar Security Products

As a branch of The Dunbar Companies, Dunbar Security Products creates and administers a specialized line of safeguard banking supplies. Dunbar Security Products offers a substantial line of cash-handling commodities, their most well-known being their unique “tamper-evident” bank deposit bags.

Second Chance

The name says it all. Second Chance is a nonprofit that dedicates its time and talent to deconstructing homes and buildings in order to salvage the useable materials, within and outside the properties, for reselling purposes. If you’ve been to Baltimore, there’s a good chance that you’ve passed their grand (200,000 square foot) secondhand shop. Not only does this nonprofit provide the recovered materials with a literal second chance, but the revenue earned at the retail space also provides job training and personal growth for individuals in the Baltimore area who face employment barriers.

Rachuba

As a 3rd generation family-owned business, Rachuba has over 40 years of expertise in an array of real estate services. With an expansive portfolio including property management, facilities management, custom home building, commercial construction, and real estate consulting, Rachuba has made its name as a company with the experience and means to make any real estate project a reality.

We are so excited to have the opportunity to work with these brands, and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for each of these agency-client relationships.

Do you want big marketing results? Contact us today to see why the region’s top brands choose Devaney & Associates.

Devaney & Associates Wins Gold in 2019 Davey Awards

Devaney & Associates was named a Gold Award Winner in the 2019 Davey Awards for its work on the 2018/19 Tuerk House Annual Report. It was 1 of only 7 entries worldwide to be honored with the Gold Award in the Design/Print: Annual Reports category.

Throughout the report, Devaney & Associates used powerful photography, illustration, and storytelling to bring to light the critical work Tuerk House—a pioneering drug and alcohol treatment facility in Baltimore City—is doing to combat addiction in our community and our state. 

Gold winner: 2018/19 Tuerk house annual report

about the davey awards

Created as an international forum for smaller agencies that don’t have the resources of the industry “Goliaths,” the annual Davey Awards honors the achievements of the “Creative Davids”—those who derive strength from big ideas, rather than stratospheric budgets.

The Davey Awards are sanctioned and judged by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a “Who’s Who” of acclaimed media, advertising, and marketing firms. AIVA members include executives from organizations such as Condé Nast, Disney, GE, Keller Crescent, Microsoft, Monster.com, MTV, Push., Publicis, Sesame Workshops, The Marketing Store, Worktank and Yahoo! and many more.

Devaney & Associates a Two-Time Winner at Public Relations Society of America 2019 Best in Maryland Awards

Devaney & Associates received two awards from the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), Maryland Chapter at the 2019 Best in Maryland award celebration held December 4.

Best in Maryland Award: U=U Maryland Website

Devaney & Associates and Chase Brexton Health Care received the Best in Maryland honor in the Website category for the Baltimore City Health Department’s U=U Maryland website (uequalsumaryland.org). The website is the cornerstone of a campaign designed to raise awareness around the fact that people living with HIV cannot transmit the disease sexually if they follow their treatment plan and maintain an undetectable viral load. In other words, undetectable equals untransmittable (U=U).

Devaney & Associates built the website using input from state and city health leaders; HIV specialists from the state’s leading health care systems; community HIV health care workers; and members of the HIV activist community, and then beta-tested it across a diverse sector of Baltimore City residents. 

After the final site was unveiled at Baltimore City’s World AIDS Day 2018 celebration, it captured the attention of the Prevention Access/International U=U campaign and its founder, Bruce Richman. In an email to the U=U Maryland team, Richman praised: “You’ve done an amazing job making the [U=U] message clear and celebratory—and your website is truly the best I’ve seen in the U.S.”

Go to UEqualsUMaryland.org to view the work and learn more about this health care breakthrough. 

Award of Excellence: Vectren “Don’t Be That Guy” Public Safety Campaign

Devaney & Associates also took home an Award of Excellence in the Public Service Campaign category for our work with Vectren, a natural gas and electricity provider serving Indiana and Ohio. 

Public Service Campaign Vectren

The award-winning campaign—“Don’t Be That Guy”—featured an animated character (That Guy) who ignores all the basic rules of natural gas safety, much to the dismay of those around him. Using a combination of pre-roll video, display, and digital radio advertising, the campaign drove users to an educational microsite where they could learn the facts about natural gas safety and take a safety quiz for the chance to win a weekly sweepstakes.

The campaign resonated with audiences, delivering a 66% video completion rate and a .10% blended clickthrough rate, beating industry benchmarks. Post-campaign surveys proved that the campaign helped increase audience awareness, with up to 86% of the audience understanding the key messages.

You can view the campaign and our case study here.

 

Should You Rebrand Before Redesigning Your Website? (A Case Study)

Excel's Staging of the 2019 DC Swim Show
Excel Event & Lighting Solutions' event production for DC Swim Week 2019

Welcome back to Webapalooza—our celebration of the websites we’ve recently launched on behalf of our clients. Last entry, we looked at how a well-planned website helped a nonprofit health care provider better serve its patients while also growing its donor base.

Now it’s time to see how a growing B2B company used its website redesign as an opportunity to also reinvent its brand.

Excel Event & Lighting Solutions: Experiences Made Perfect

Excel Event & Lighting Solutions is a full-service event production company serving high-profile organizations throughout the Mid-Atlantic. Clients include the Baltimore Ravens, HBO, and the NCAA.

Excel combines everything event managers look for—anything-is-possible creativity, expert precision, and concierge-level service—into a single point of accountability. The result: delightfully perfect experiences for both the client and the client’s audience from start to finish.

Before: Excel’s Website Challenges

Challenge #1: The previous site (and overall brand identity) did not fully communicate Excel’s broad spectrum of event capabilities which includes planning, production, fabrication and décor, lighting design, and installation.

Challenge #2: The site’s language used vague promises like “excellent customer service” that did nothing to distinguish Excel from the competition. Copy described the company’s services, but did not offer up any differentiators. 

Challenge #3: The company was locked out of its existing website—an issue we see with increasing frequency. This occurs when a website was built years ago, and the client must rely on an expensive developer service contract to make edits.

Challenge #4: Excel felt the search engine optimization (SEO) plan was ineffective, a belief that our development team verified in one glance.

After: A New Brand First. Then a New Website to Match.

Our plan for Excel involved taking a step back—rebranding the company with a new name (from Excel Lighting Services to Excel Event & Lighting Solutions), new logo, and new brand positioning strategy and tagline (Experiences Made Perfect). This enabled us to help event managers not just understand what Excel does, but why they should choose Excel over the competition

Excel's Old Logo
Excel's Old Name & Logo
Excel's New Name, Logo & Tagline: Experiences Made Perfect
Excel's New Name, Logo & Tagline

We then tackled the web issues, writing and designing a new WordPress site that showcases those perfect experiences Excel is so adept at executing. Our creative team ensured site content sells and positions Excel, rather than just describes its services. Beautiful photos dominate the design and, combined with a minimalist site architecture, truly showcase the work. We also updated the organic SEO plan, writing page-by-page title and description tags to enhance search rankings and search engine user engagement.

Excel Home Page Design
We can bore you with all the technical details about how we helped Excel navigate the muddy waters of domain propagation, DNS records, and host transfer issues, but we will leave you to checking out the work—both ours and Excel’sat ExcelEventSolutions.com.

Is Your Website Clearly Communicating Your Difference?

At Devaney & Associates, we help companies turn their websites into one of their most valuable marketing assets with a dynamic suite of services that goes beyond web design and development. Our solutions can include:

  • Branding audits
  • Competitive analysis & market research
  • Brand identity & positioning statement development 
  • Website audits 
  • Web design or content refreshes
  • Content management, including blog and newsroom writing
  • Advertising, marketing & PR campaigns to drive people to your site

Contact us online or at 410-296-0800  to discuss how we can help you maximize your site’s value.

Devaney & Associates Launches Total Health Care Website

Grandfather gives grandson piggy back ride at health care center

It is Webapalooza at Devaney & Associates—a celebration of our clients’ NEW website launches. Every site we create combines our exhaustive research, creativity, technological know-how, and well-oiled  project management to give our clients 3 unbeatable advantages:

  1. Brand-building custom design and content
  2. A clear-cut strategy to convert visitors into leads or customers
  3. Content marketing tools to keep site visitors (and search engines!) engaged.

Total Health Care: A Federally Qualified Health Center

For our first Webapalooza entry, we’re celebrating the launch of Total Health Care’s new site: TotalHealthCare.org.

Total Health Care is a federally qualified health center (FQHC)—a community-based health care provider that receives funds from the US Department of Health & Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to provide primary care services in underserved areas.

Before: Total Health Care’s Website Challenges

Challenge #1: The nonprofit had not updated its website in a significant number of years. The site was out of date and frustrating to update.

Challenge #2: The former site also lacked messaging for donors. Donor-centric messaging is critical for Total Health Care because there is a misconception that the federal government provides the center sufficient funding to help serve patients’ needs.

Challenge #3: The existing site was not patient friendly. It was difficult to navigate and lacked features that other FQHCs offer, like appointment requests.

After: A Website That’s Just What the Doctor Ordered

To kick things off, we hosted a discovery workshop with various members of the Total Health Care team, including the medical director and development director, to ensure the site would meet the organization’s—and the patients’—needs.

We then wrote and designed a new site that focused on two main audiences: patients and donors. Our team designed an information architecture that would help guide patients through the site and give them multiple ways to connect with the exact services they were seeking, while also making it easy for donors to donate and discover other ways to get involved in the mission.

Total Health Care home page design
Total Health Care website interior page design

Copy addressed the FQHC “funding misconception” head on, to help a new fund development team in their quest to position Total Health Care as a nonprofit first, FQHC second.

Just as importantly, the WordPress interface was easy for the marketing team to digest. The client was so happy, they made the final edits to the site themselves. 

Let’s Make Website Magic

When you work with Devaney & Associates on a website project, you get the full suite of digital services, PLUS a seasoned marketing team who will design a site to meet your big picture objectives, not just look pretty.

We don’t just migrate content, we write it. We jump in the trenches and figure out host transfer issues or why old domains are not redirecting. And we will never inundate you with tech speak so your eyes glaze over, and we sound cool. Nor will we leave you to your own devices to navigate the digital landscape alone.

Want to learn more? Give us a call at 410-296-0800 or contact us online and share your website challenges with us.