With apartment vacancy rates in the metro-area at just 4.6 percent, new rental properties are in deep demand. And that might explain why 2020 Lawrence, an 231-unit apartment project that began welcoming residents since last December, is already half-leased. The Stasko Agency has been promoting 2020 since the project broke ground at 2020 Lawrence Street in 2011 and we're proud to see the community become such a huge success.
The LEED Gold registered project will "officially" celebrate its grand opening Wednesday, May 15th with tours, music and cocktails and food provided by Ballpark neighborhood eateries. The festivities will kick off at 5:30 p.m. and will last until 8:30 p.m. The celebration will also give the public a chance to enjoy the view from 2020's amenity-filled rooftop, which features a dog park, lounge area complete with hot tub and fire pit; and a fitness center. The rooftop will also eventually house a greenhouse that will is expected to produce 15,000 pounds of food annually.
|An evening view from 2020 Lawrence's cozy rooftop lounge|
The greenhouse is just one of many "green" features that separate 2020 from other downtown apartment communities. The 10-story building is the first to offer composting and an electrical vehicle charging station, available free of charge for residents. Tesla Motors will have one of their Model S Performance vehicles on display at the grand opening and representatives from the company will be handing out passes for attendees to schedule test drives. The building also features a solar array that generates power for the community, reducing the amount of carbon pumped into the atmosphere by roughly 50 tons per year. Overall, 2020 Lawrence residents are expected to spend 50 percent less on their utility bills than they would living in a similar non-LEED building.
|A look inside one of 2020's two-bedroom units|
Legislators and community leaders got a closer look at 2020's sustainability efforts at two recent forums. And the development's grand opening has also gained coverage in Inside Real Estate News and YourHub. 2020 has also been featured in Confluence Denver, the Colorado Real Estate Journal, MultifamilyBiz.com and Out Front Colorado.
If you'd like to see what all the hype is about, join us for the grand opening! Simply RSVP here. Parking is available at 21st and Arapahoe or on the street in front of the building. Hope to see you there.
|Landlords in training through AAMD|
Fortunately, there is an organization in Denver dedicated to that very thing; the Apartment Association of Metro Denver. Created in 1968 as part of the Colorado Apartment Association, the AAMD has a simple, straightforward mission:
To enhance member and association profitability, propserity and professional growth through legislative representation, educational advancement and networking opportunities.
Most of us at some point have had to deal with landlords. What you probably don't know are all the things landlords must deal with on a day to day basis when handling rental properties. Items such as keeping properties up to code, repairs, damage to units, late or non-payments, even choosing the right tenants can be a massive time consuming task.
At the same time, local and state governments are constantly changing and updating laws that often have a negative impact on the rental industry. The AAMD has a long and successful record of working with legislators and lawmakers to ensure that the rights and concerns of landlords are protected. But their work goes far beyond that.
AAMD also works with property owners to train them to be quality landlords and educate them on the necessities required in order to provide quality housing for those who need it.
The Stasko Agency has worked with AAMD to help spread the word about the work being done on behalf of both landlords and tenants. Because ultimately, the more well informed, educated and trained a landlord is, the better equipped they will be to provide a comfortable home for their tenants. Branding and messaging is vital to successful coverage of AAMD since one of the biggest hurdles facing the association is image.
As stated earlier, even though most landlords do their best, many get lumped in with those that aren't ethical or cut corners. As in any industry, there are bad apples, and AAMD works hard to protect those landlords that follow the rules and work with tenants to solve problems and handle any issues that may arise.
The Stasko Agency makes sure that the message of education and training, as well as the list of good works performed by AAMD is mentioned in every article and news story about AAMD. Perhaps even more important, The Stasko Agency understands that landlords, their properties and AAMD are a great asset to the communities they serve. Like most people or organizations that work behind the scenes to protect others, few know of AAMD's existence. The Stasko Agency is working to make sure that everyone knows about the work they do with landlords, the charities they help and with legislators to ensure the protection of everyone involved in the rental industry, both landlords and tenants.
So the next time you rent an apartment that has working plumbing, heat and AC and clean and liveable, take a moment to thank the AAMD for helping provide a landlord that cares about the product they are selling.
· Worksite wellness trends and the factors influencing the health status of our state;
· New tools and strategies to increase participation in wellness programs;
· Data on the types of benefits and wellness programs Colorado employers offer
· How a healthy workforce can improve a business’ bottom line;
· How to gather and use data to quantify the success of a worksite wellness program;
· Effective strategies that can be implemented in all sizes of worksites;
· Evidence based research, in innovative case studies, and programs to address
|Rice delivered to a small village in Peru by LIttle Man Ice Cream as part of the Scoop for Scoop program|
This philanthropy doesn't just extend to those who live in and around the LoHi area, though, as recently demonstrated by Little Man Ice Cream. Since opening its doors in 2008, Little Man has been involved in a program called "Scoop for Scoop". Spearheaded by Little Man owner, Paul Tamburello, Little Man Ice Cream has been donating one scoop of rice for every scoop of ice cream they sell.
Recently, Tamburello and General Manager Loren Martinez travelled to Cambodia, along with other caregivers, to distribute the rice to villagers desperately in need of food and health care. Watch the video below to see some of the people helped by Little Man's donations. You can also go to their Vimeo page here to see and share the video with friends.
Scoop for Scoop from Jacob Truax on Vimeo.
Little Man has sent donations to villages all across the world, including Myanmar, Senegal, Haiti and Peru. In order to ensure that every grain of rice reaches those truly in need, Little Man purchases the rice from local villages and towns and then distributes it personally to those in need.
This is just one example of the charitable actions taken by many of the LoHi merchants every day of the year. Along with the several Thanksgiving and Christmas food drives and free dinners, LoHi merchants have a long record of assisting those in need.
The Stasko Agency is proud to be a part of such a caring and giving group of businesses and individuals who spend not just money, but time and sincere effort to provide food, comfort and care to those who need it most, not only in our neighborhood, city or state, but across the world. The Little Man Ice Cream, "Scoop for Scoop" program is still going strong. You can get more details, see pics of previous trips and even keep tabs on how many donations are being made daily by going to the Little Man website.
So with Summer just around the corner, the next time you need a little bit of delicious, homemade ice cream to cool you down when the temperatures start to rise, consider stopping by Little Man. The scoop of ice cream won't just be a great break for you, it'll also be helping feed a family in a part of the world that could really use the help.
Circle Fresh Farms needs your help! They are currently involved in a contest to see which local small business will receive $10,000 to help their business grow. The contest is sponsored by "On Deck Capital" and will be giving the ten-thousand dollar award to the top vote getter in their Facebook contest.
Right now, Circle Fresh Farms is in the top five, but they need your vote to qualify for the grand prize. All you have to do is go to the Facebook page link here, and vote for Circle Fresh Farms. You can also go to the Circle Fresh Farms website for a link to the contest page.
You can also help by posting this blog to your Facebook and Twitter account and encouraging your friends to vote for this amazing Colorado Company. The more votes they get, the closer they are to the $10,000 grand prize which means they can expand their network and continue to provide locally grown, quality produce for families along the Front Range.
Circle Fresh Farms also supports local farmers by working with a network of farms to grow their vegetables, all of which are currently sold at metro area Whole Foods.
CFF is changing the produce industry, from using less land, less water while still growing the highest quality vegetables available in Colorado.
So help us get the word out and support this great local business!
|Not everyone can go viral like "Grumpy Cat"|
They have millions of views and have elevated ordinary folks into stardom (think "the Bieb" and the guy who did "Gangnam Style"). It's tempting to think that just about anyone can create a viral video, and in theory, anyone can. But in reality, creating a video that racks up millions of hits is, particularly for your business, is very, very, VERY hard.
An Essential Element:
The irony is, your business NEEDS to utilize video, especially on your social media platforms, in order to gain followers, friends and potential customers.
It's just a simple fact of social media: You need visuals and video to raise your profile online.
This is where the viral video curse comes into play. Too often businesses believe they can create a viral video that will instantly make their company an internet hit. The problem is, it's nearly impossible to consciously create a video that goes viral.
However, you CAN create a video that attracts viewers, hits your target demographic and effectively promotes your business.
Don't Try Too Hard:
The internet graveyard is littered with examples of companies that tried too hard to create a viral video, or reach a particular demographic. Pepsi comes to mind, Coors tried it with their "Code Blue" campaign and Cheetos struck out with their recent "Orange Underground" effort. (click link to see example). So, even the big boys find it nearly impossible to do.
For your business, however, the first thing to do is remove the idea of creating a viral video in the first place. Instead, focus on creating a video that is interesting and actually says something about your business.
Let's start with the basics of creating an online video for your company:
1. Keep it short - Anything over a minute is less likely to be viewed by the general public. Don't use two minutes to say what you can say in :45 seconds.
2. Don't TRY to be funny - Humor is subjective. What's funny to you might be offensive to someone else. You don't want to anger potential customers.
3. Have a clear message - Don't let your efforts at humor or viral fame get in the way of telling your viewers what you want to say about your business.
4. Reflect your personality - If you're a fun, whimsical restaurant, you probably don't want your video to be stuffy or stiff. Show your businesses' personality in your video.
5. Don't scrimp on the details - The worst thing you can do is have awful lighting, bad sound and subpar editing. It doesn't have to look like George Lucas directed it, but it also shouldn't look like a middle school art project.
Two other items you should keep in mind. For those who are Denver natives, you'll remember the old Jake Jabs American Furniture Warehouse ads. I bring this up because one of the staples of viral videos is the use of cute cats, puppies and other assorted animals to attract interest.
You can attempt to use animals in your videos, but remember a few things if this is the way you choose to go. First, animals are very hard to work with. Second, using cute animals might look like you're trying too hard to go viral. Third, a cute animal might take away from the message you're trying to deliver.
One last thing. When you make your video think in terms of volume. In other words, don't make just one video, make several. A single video can be posted and get a ton of hits, but in a short time, people move on and it is forgotten. If you have seven or even ten short videos, you can constantly post the videos to your Facebook and Twitter feeds and keep people interested and looking forward to new videos. You don't have to try and tell a story, just make your videos interesting and informative and you'll be fine; just have a lot of them.
Again, producing a viral video is nearly impossible because the best ones happen by accident. Instead make your videos fun (not necessarily funny), watchable, have a message and keep it short and you'll be able to post videos that will be effective enough to catch the attention of potential customers while allowing your current customers a chance to share something that will draw more attention to your business. And that is just as valuable to your business than any viral video will ever be.
|Circle Fresh Farms CEO Rich Naha shows investors his latest crop|
"We’ve accomplished a lot in less than two years. We’ve secured key relationships with ten different network farmers and established our brand among suppliers,” said Circle Fresh Farms CEO Rich Naha. ”We’re ready to take this to the next level - to expand into new regions by working with retailers with a national reach.”
Currently, CFF’s network stretches from Pueblo to Longmont with plans to expand even further in 2013. We are thrilled that we have been part of Circle Fresh Farms’ growth over the past year and even more thrilled to note that last year the company posted a 60 percent growth in revenues and is expected to more than triple that growth in 2013.