Source: Premier Bride
Originally Posted: December 13, 2018
Sound the trumpets because Wisconsin sports royalty is born anew! The granddaughter of a former Green Bay Packers CEO, herself an accomplished reporter for ESPN, Olivia Harlan has married her rightful partner, Sam Dekker. You may recognize Sam as Wisconsin’s 2012 “Mr. Basketball”, a second team All American for the Wisconsin Badgers team that advanced to the 2015 NCAA National Championship game, and currently a forward in the NBA for the Washington Wizards.
Combined the two make quite a team, and together they planned a wedding of which dreams are made. If Midwestern elegance is a wedding theme, these two showed us how it’s done.
Months before Sam and Olivia pulled off their stunning black tie wedding, Sam proposed to Olivia in his home town of Sheboygan. They were enjoying their summer, moving through an average day she hadn’t expected would result in an engagement. “It was very intimate and random!” Olivia laughs. “That day, we had worked out and gone to Walmart. I was so caught off guard! It was very romantic and simple.”
Romantic and simple might be the couple’s best descriptors, despite their impressive résumés. Their first date happened thanks to the recommendation of a shared friend, a set-up Olivia was skeptical of. They met at a bar and watched the Packers play, and things clicked right away. “Sam was so funny, quick-witted, sincere, humble, and easy to be around,” she says. “We fell in love very fast.” Just one month later, the magic of Green Bay endured. While attending a Packers game in person, Sam and Olivia exchanged those three little words, “I love you.” It wasn’t a leap from there to expect one day they would be planning their wedding.
Homage to their shared Midwestern roots was peppered throughout the rehearsal, ceremony, and reception, each held in the incomparable Door County, where Olivia’s parents reside. The rehearsal dinner took place at The Whistling Swan Inn and Restaurant, a favorite of her family’s. “All of the groomsmen stayed there as well, so we had the whole place to ourselves.” The next day, the party moved to Horseshoe Bay Golf Club, for both the ceremony and festivities to follow.
Olivia and Sam kept to a chic color palette of black, white, and cream, saying “I do” under a massive tent trimmed with sweeps of rich greenery and crystal chandeliers. Olivia walked down the aisle to the theme from Gone with the Wind, “a favorite movie in my family and my namesake, Olivia de Havilland.” During the Unity Ceremony, Olivia poured sand they had collected while visiting Jerusalem, symbolizing their foundation in faith. Sam’s parents added to that sand from Sheboygan, and Olivia’s from Door County, their respective hometowns.
In true Wisconsin fashion, two cocktail hours followed the ceremony, one before and one after dinner. A nod to local supper clubs, “we served traditional supper club drinks: a Grasshopper, Pink Squirrel, and Brandy Alexander.” Details like these helped to set the Midwestern summer vibe. Romantic seasonal lavender was incorporated throughout, with lavender sprigs in the champagne glasses, and a lemon-lavender wedding cake. The space was decorated with a mix of modern touches and antique furniture from Relics Vintage Rentals Flowers were provided by Buds N' Bloom in De Pere, Wisconsin. “Jerad was the best,” Olivia says. “His vision is so extravagant and beautiful. He worked tirelessly to transform the tent from the ceremony to the after party, while we had dinner.”
Supper club style didn’t end there. Honey-dipped cigars were hand-rolled on site by professionals, and Platinum, a live band based out of Milwaukee, were a must-book after having enjoyed them at a previous event. “No one wanted to leave the dance floor. We stole them from a friend’s wedding, and would do it again and again!” Fireworks mesmerized the attendees just after sunset, capped with a sparkler bedecked send-off. The night ended quite literally with a bang, and a twinkle.
The emotion of the day lives on in the couple’s shared memory. “I’ve never felt such tangible love in one place,” Olivia reflects. “It was overwhelming. You couldn’t tell who was Sam’s family or my family, his friends or my friends.” But don’t let the perfectly executed elegance fool you. This was at its heart, a very Wisconsin wedding. “Everyone became close over the weekend, and I loved looking out and seeing the non-stop laughter. We’re the first of our friends to get married, so it was a young, rowdy crowd. I wouldn’t have had it any other way!”
Source: Los Angeles Times Times
Written By: Mike Digiovanna
Originally Posted: December 9, 2018
A good 20 minutes had passed since the final gun sounded in StubHub Center, and Darius Philon was still out of breath, the defensive tackle practically panting through his first round of interviews after the Chargers held on for a 26-21 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday.
That prompted a question: Was Philon still winded by his sack of Bengals quarterback Jeff Driskel on a potential game-tying two-point conversion attempt with 1 minute, 50 seconds left, or by a celebratory sprint/dance that took the 6-foot-1, 300-pounder from the 15-yard line to midfield in about 3.2 seconds?
“Oh man, I’m just super excited that I made a big play in a big-time situation for my team and got us the win,” Philon said. “I knew I had done something big, and I was excited for me and the team. It was definitely one of the biggest sacks of my career, even though it doesn’t count on the stat sheet.”
The Bengals, who have lost seven of eight games, pulled to within 23-21 of the Chargers when Joe Mixon scored from one yard out, capping an 11-play, 79-yard drive that was aided by a pair of third-down penalties, a pass-interference call on cornerback Casey Hayward and a holding call on free safety Jahleel Addae.
Philon lined up opposite Cincinnati left guard Christian Westerman on the two-point attempt. He took an outside route after the snap and beat Westerman with a spin move that turned the guard so thoroughly that Westerman fell to the ground.
While left tackle Clint Boling tried to fend off a bull rush by end Joey Bosa, Philon had a clear path to the elusive Driskel, who backpedaled toward his right in an effort to move the pocket.
Chargers defensive end Melvin Ingram closed from the other side, leaving Driskel with no escape route. Philon moved in quickly, wrapped Driskel by the waist and drove him into the ground before sprinting toward the Chargers sideline.
“The guard overset on me, so I spun back inside, and with some pressure by Mel on the backside, it made him step back,” Philon said of Driskel. “That’s when I made hay and made a play. Like our coach always tells us, it’s about keeping your feet moving and finishing.”
The Chargers secondary deserves an assist on the sack for its blanket coverage of the Bengals receivers, tight ends and running back.
Safety Derwin James said Cincinnati tried to run a play similar to the one it scored with in the second quarter, when Driskel dumped a six-yard touchdown pass over the middle to a wide-open John Ross on an underneath route.
The Chargers defended the two-point attempt with man-to-man coverage on the outside and zone coverage in the middle. Driskel had ample time to get a pass off but found no open receivers.
“It’s all of us in it together, so of course they had a lot to do with it,” Philon said of the defensive backs. “If it wasn’t for them plastering and staying on their receivers, I wouldn’t have been able to get to the quarterback.”
Philon’s sack was one of the few highlights of an overall defensive effort that Philon described as “a little bumpy,” and that Bosa said left the team with “a lot of things we have to clean up.”
Mixon rushed 26 times for 111 yards, the most the Chargers have yielded to a running back this season, and caught five passes for 27 yards. Driskel, making his second NFL start, completed 18 of 27 passes for 170 yards and one touchdown. Though the Chargers sacked Driskel three times, they did not force a turnover.
“For me, the game just felt like a pig fight,” Chargers defensive lineman Damion Square said. “It was real grimy on the inside. They were determined to run the football. But we found a way to get it done. We dealt with a few short fields, and we came out victorious, man. I’ll take it.”
The Chargers made just enough big plays on defense to prevent an upset. They stopped the Bengals on a two-point conversion attempt just before halftime when James read a play in which Driskel looked left and fired to running back Giovani Bernard in the right flat. James tackled Bernard short of the end zone to preserve a 14-12 lead.
The Chargers stopped Cincinnati on a fourth-and-one from the Chargers’ 35-yard line early in the third quarter. Mixon took a handoff up the middle and bounced off a pile and to the outside, but he was chased down by cornerback Michael Davis and Addae, and tackled for no gain.
Defensive back Adrian Phillips broke up a third-down pass early in the fourth quarter that forced the Bengals to settle for a field goal. Bosa dropped Driskel for a loss of 10 yards in the second quarter, and linebacker Uchenna Nwosu sacked Driskel for a nine-yard loss on the second-to-last play of the game.
“It wasn’t our best showing — I think we can do better — but we’ll take a win,” Addae said. “It’s hard to get W’s in this league.”
Source: Roto Baller
Written By: Billy Stonick
Originally Posted: December 10, 2018
Los Angeles Chargers rookie linebacker Uchenna Nwosu came up big in Sunday’s game against Cincy to help seal the win. With 30 seconds left to go in the game and the Chargers up by five, Nwosu made an incredible speed rush to bring Bengals quarterback Jeff Driskel to the ground and end the Bengals final drive before it had the chance to get rolling. Nwosu and the rest of the defense really picked it up against Cincinnati to bail out an offense that surprisingly struggled. The Chargers defense has held opponents to less than 24 points in eight of their last nine games, and they’re a solid play in most weeks. They should probably be avoided this Thursday when they face the Chiefs though.
When it comes to using social media for brand building, we find the two biggest mistakes brands make are using platforms that don't align with their brand and posting the same content across all platforms. Brands are only as strong as the reach their messages get, so knowing what platforms your audience uses will help accomplish this goal more efficiently.
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn are the most popular social platforms; however, each of them consists of a different type of audience and is useful for portraying different types of messages. Knowing who your brand's audience is will help you decide which platforms to use. Twitter does not hold a lot of older users, so if your brand is not aimed at that older generation, putting effort into gaining a Twitter following may not be the most useful strategy. Knowing the platforms and their audiences and knowing your brand's audience will help you determine which platforms are best to use for your brand.
Once you have determined which platforms are best for your brand, it is important to create different content for each platform. If you post the same content to your Facebook as your do Instagram, it won't make sense for your audience to follow you on both platforms. Each platform has a different aesthetic for posting content, and your content should align with the feeling of each platform. This is not to say you cannot talk about the same things on your platforms, but the content itself should never be word for word on multiple platforms.
Additionally, shaping the voice of your message to match the tone of the platform will also attract a stronger following. For example, Twitter is often used as a humorous medium, so posting content with a serious or business tone may not read as well as adding humor to the content. There a million different ways to say the same thing, so shifting the tone of your message for different platforms is an easy way to use the medium effectively.
Social media is a great way to build brand awareness and create a space for your audience to engage with your brand. In order to do this effectively, however, you must know which platforms work best with your brand's image and message. Building a strong brand involves putting out content daily, so spending your time efficiently on the platforms that attract your audience will be more useful than trying to have a voice on all platforms.
One of the newest ways we are seeing people and companies tell their stories and share their messages is through video content. With tools like Instagram TV and the ability to post video stories on multiple platforms, video is an easy and effective way for brands to communicate what they are all about.
Video is easy because it allows brands to communicate a message in a more informal setting and format. When you write out content for social platforms or blogs, it takes time to make sure the content is written grammatically correct, along with portraying your message in a clear and concise way. Creating video content allows a brand to say what they are thinking without having to worry about a lot of editing. It provides a brand the chance to speak informally and portray their message better than a writing medium would allow, as people's attention stays with videos longer than written content.
Creating video content is also an effective way of sharing a message because while you are providing your audience with a chance to hear your message and what defines your brand, you are also allowing them to also interact with your brand on a more personal level. Video content adds the humanization factor to your brand, as your audience is connecting and interacting with a real person, not someone behind a screen or text.
Overall, video is becoming the best way for brands to deliver a clear, genuine and humanized message to their audience; all of which create brand engagement and loyalty.
One of the biggest misconceptions we are told when building a brand is that followers equals exposure. It is easy to get caught up in trying to get as many followers as you can on your social accounts, but having thousands of followers doesn't mean you're brand is gaining real exposure to an audience. Real exposure occurs when people engage with your brand, which means more than just following it.
Engagement comes in the form of likes, comments and shares on any social media platform. While having thousands of followers allows for greater potential in engagement, the follow alone does not equate to someone engaging with your brand. You need your followers to respond and interact with the content you are putting out.
The best way to create engagement with your content is by asking for it. You can try all the tricks in the world, but asking your followers to share their opinions, to share a post, to comment their answer to your question, is the best way to create engagement. Being straight forward and asking your audience for what you want, allows your audience to know how to interact with your post and gives you the result you are looking for. More often than not, people need a little encouragement to engage with brands.
By creating content that encourages people to interact with your brand, you are allowing your audience the chance to build a relationship with your brand. If the content you are putting out is interactive and worth engaging, your audience will feel connected to your brand, instilling a lasting impression and relationship. Brand loyalty and engagement is when genuine exposure for your brand occurs.
For most athletes, building upon their personal brand seems like the most logical thing to do because of their largely followed platform. It's almost an unspoken responsibility for all players once they've reached the professional level. While building a brand is necessary to optimize potential growth off the field, it's important to know the reason for posting content beyond just wanting to make a profit.
We all know turning a brand's story into a profitable business is the goal, however, there is something more to be said about the importance behind a brand's story. Anytime you post content adding to the overall message behind your brand, it has to be done with purpose. Why are you posting a certain picture today? What is going on in your wold that motivated a post? Everything we do is intentional, and knowing those intentions fuels a more genuine brand with the potential to add value to yourself and your audience.
Purpose drives our everyday lives, so it should be driving our work too. We all have had experiences that have shaped who we are and what defines us. Allowing these experiences to drive our content allows a story to be told. Personal brands are the accumulation of stories that define a person, and knowing how those stories can positively influence others gives our experiences and brands a greater purpose.
Figuring out the impact your brand's message can have will foster more content, more genuine content, and instill a clear message of what defines you and your brand.
We've talked about defining the core values for your personal brand, the values you as a person live by. So, how do you keep yourself aligned with those values to make sure your brand and values never come into question? At LW, we think surrounding yourself with people who also hold the same values as you makes staying true to yourself and your brand a little easier.
They key difference between a personal brand and the brand of an organization, is the reputation damage done when a personal brand goes against its core values. When an organization does something that doesn't align with their values, the whole company takes the blame. However, when a personal brand goes against its values, that person's values and reputation is put into question. It's personal.
Surrounding yourself with positive people and influences, who hold the same values as you makes staying true to these values easier. When you surround yourself with these types of people, you will find these are the same people who encourage you to be the best version of yourself. They keep you on the path towards success; a path fueled by the core values you have linked to your brand.
For athletes, living in a world where your moves on and off the field are under constant watch and judgement from others means the stakes are high. Living the life of an athlete means treading waters filled with temptations steering you away from your core values. Having a platform with the potential to reach a large amount of people, comes with a lot of responsibility. This responsibility becomes easier when you have a core group of people behind you pushing you to stay true to yourself and your values.
While defining who you are and what your brand stands for may seem like an easy task, living by these values proves to be a daily test for anyone. Surround yourself with positivity. Surround yourself with positive people. Create an environment where you and your brand have the ability to continually grow and stay true to the values you align yourself with.
We've said it before, and we will say it again, content is king. The content you put out not only defines your brand, but it allows users to relate to your brand and create a personal connection. For athletes, the easiest way to create this personal connection for audiences is to provide them with as much behind the scenes content as possible.
Behind the scenes content could come as photos at practice, videos from a training session before the season begins, or a picture of an athlete and their family. Any time an athlete can show their audience who they are and what they do outside of playing their sport, they allow themselves to be seen for more than just an athlete. They become relatable and they expand their brand.
Not only does behind the scenes content provide your audience a chance to relate to you, but it also offers insight into a world many people don't experience. To be a professional athlete involves having a skill set many people don't possess, meaning the majority of people will never know what it's like to be a professional athlete. People see content of athletes playing their respective sports all the time, they want to see what happens in an athlete's life when they aren't playing their sport. People want to see how rigorous training is, what their pregame ritual may be, or what type of activities an athlete likes to do in their free time, and so on.
Content is king, but quality content offering exclusive insight into an athletes daily activities is what builds strong and effective brands.
While we talk about branding needing to be consistent, it is important to realize that personal brands can grow and add dimensions, because people grow and change. While core values often don't change, people may introduce additional core values to their life as their surroundings change.
An athlete who enters the league at age 20 or 22, will most likely have different focuses at the beginning of their career than what they are focusing on once they are retiring at age 27 or 30. Most often a young adult entering the league is focused on training to make a name for themselves on the field. They may also associate their name with a philanthropy project they believe in. While years pass, and players begin to build families, or other passions, their values also build.
Our own company recently went through a re-branding phase. While our core values of faith, positivity and personal growth remain the same, as a brand we decided to emphasize them more in our work and implement them into our daily routines. Our company grew both in size and values, which means our brand needed to represent this same change.
Reflecting on who you are as a person and what your brand represents is necessary to do so your brand is consistently reflecting the values which define you. Growing as a person means your brand should grow as well. Authentic, genuine and transparent brands prosper.
Change happens to everyone, and embracing that change is what humanizes your brand. No one is the same person they were ten, five or even a year ago, which is why your brand has to change with you as well. Consistency is key, but being consistent only happens when you are consistently aligning your brand with your authentic self.