Ad agency finds ‘Plum’ site downtownAdvertising agency Red Plum Media began moving into its new quarters on First Avenue in November and since then the most-asked question is about the wall of the building that borders the Arts Center Arts Park.
Advertising agency Red Plum Media began moving into its new quarters on First Avenue in November and since then the most-asked question is about the wall of the building that borders the Arts Center Arts Park.
Red Plum partners Pat Yatskis and J.P. Cozby have been brainstorming ideas for the wall shared with the Orlady building before it burned down. They’re looking at both short- and long-term fixes, knowing the long-term fixes will be more expensive.
“It will just take time and meanwhile we’ll continue to throw ideas around,” Cozby said. “In the short term, we’ll clean up the wall and maybe paint it a darker color.”
Part of the cleanup will include getting rid of old brickwork and chimneys.
“We want it nice, but we’re a new business so a permanent solution will have to wait,” Yatskis said. “We also want to work with the Arts Center on whatever we do.”
The two men started Red Plum about three and a half years ago in Cozby’s house. It was part-time work in the advertising business, while they held down other jobs. Cozby worked for Bernie Satrom at Maranatha Custom Churches and Satrom is the previous owner of the building the partners bought. And while it might take time to do something about the wall, both are committed to it.
“We want to make it a cohesive environment for the Arts Center and other businesses downtown,” Yatskis said. “We all want to see Jamestown grow.”
What started as the two of them in Cozby’s house has grown to include Austin Bauer, a Jamestown College graduate, as account manager and Kyle Johnson as a graphic designer. All are full-time employees with a part-time secretary in Claudia Sharp.
“Within the last year, the business has been a kind of crescendo,” Yatskis said. “Moving into this building was due to the growth from clients throughout the region.”
Red Plum started by serving only Jamestown clientele, but has since added clients in Bismarck, Fargo and Devils Lake. Cozby and Yatskis credit Red Plum’s creativity and personal touch in customer service for that growth.
“We bring in a different flavor,” Cozby said.
“Bismarck and Fargo are growing with lots of new business moving in,” Yatskis added. “As a new advertising agency we’ve been able to capture some of that new growth. We also get clients from other agencies because of the value of what we do.”
Yatskis and Cozby believe they offer a one-stop shop, even to dealing with vendors. From the small business owner who just wants a new logo and some advice to the bigger businesses wanting a whole new image and Web site design, Red Plum does it all.
“We have a passion for brand development,” Yatskis said. “We do marketing strategic planning, act as a marketing consultant and can create a marketing plan for the year. We’re also doing print work, catalogues, posters, radio and promotional video.”
Yatskis does the marketing strategy, using surveys and focus groups. Cozby is responsible for the broad creative work and directs Johnson in graphic design.
“It means a lot of really late nights, but we do everything possible to get the clients what they need,” Yatskis said. “We have clients we have an ongoing relationship with and for some clients we’re the consultant, we’re the marketing person.”
Their clients range from professional and financial institutions to tourism and economic development, Yatskis said. Sometimes it’s a one-time service and with others it’s a relationship. He said businesses often have difficulty getting beyond an internal perspective on what’s needed.
“We offer them a fresh perspective from the target market,” he said.
The partners and their employees are still settling into the building. Much of it was remodeled by Satrom, so they only needed to paint. Recently the storefront was replaced. Yatskis said a new sign will go up within the next couple of weeks announcing Red Plum’s new home.
Cozby and Yatskis see their advertising agency as being good not only for local business development, but also in attracting new economic development.
“We’re about growing and improving James-town,” Yatskis said. “We want to partner with businesses in doing that.”
Sun reporter Toni Pirkl can be reached at (701) 952-8453 or by e-mail at email@example.com