It is an honor to have been a part of the Serve Marketing team that took home the “Best of Show” award at the Milwaukee 99 Awards Show, hosted by United Adworkers, which honored the best 99 advertising submissions + the highest honor of Best of Show.
The award was given to the Integrated Campaign done for Lacey’s Hope Project, a survivor-founded organization dedicated to educating society about the realities of sex trafficking.
Thank you to the many talented volunteers from BVK and other giving companies that put their heart, passion, and hard work into this impactful campaign.
A special thank you to Emmy Myers, the Founder of Lacey’s Hope Project, as this campaign would not have been possible without her bravery and willingness to share her story and help educate others. We are inspired every single day by the volunteers we work with and the non-profits we serve.
After having the opportunity to lead Serve Marketing for the last 3 years and be a part of helping so many non-profit organizations, and during that time traveling between Chicago and Milwaukee, it is with great excitement that my own marketing consulting agency is born.
With the company name including my family name that I had so much pride having and working my way through art school, early career in advertising agency jobs and then meeting my other half who also has a passion for marketing and helping others, Brian Gainor.
@VossbergGainor will allow me to continue to help brands and individuals with their marketing, serve on local boards to help non-profits, and be close to the mini executives of Vossberg Gainor: Clara & Garrett!
Coincidentally a picture popped up of them from 3 years ago at my Serve desk. So many incredible memories getting them involved and teaching them how to give back. I look forward to utilizing Vossberg Gainor to continue to teach them the importance of helping others and that it’s possible to enjoy all of it while working hard and still having the time to focus on the important things in life: family.
Here’s to thanking so many that have helped me get to this point and excited for what’s to come! Thank you to Gary Mueller and Lauren Sutter for all the Serve memories. A volunteer for life!
January is Sex Trafficking Awareness Month. To mark the occasion, survivor Emmy Myers along with Serve Marketing officials on Wednesday, Jan. 9 helped unveil a documentary and the “Your Suburbs Are Not Safe” awareness campaign.
The theory behind it is, if the young faces and true stories of local human trafficking victims make you uncomfortable, you will do something about it.
“You are not immune. Boys and girls are being sex trafficked all over — even in the suburbs,” said Gary Mueller, Serve Marketing.
According to officials with the Lacey’s Hope Project, sex trafficking cases involving minors have been reported in all 72 Wisconsin counties.
“It’s uncomfortable to know girls as young as 13 are being sold for sex, and you can indeed order them as easy as ordering a pizza,” said Mueller.
The Lacey’s Hope Project involves edgy ads — pictures and billboards designed to make you feel uncomfortable — to encourage you to act.
“I was hiding in plain sight. So many victims are,” said Emmy Myers.
Myers spoke at Badger Middle School in West Bend— and talked about how she was forced into sex trafficking in her Hartford neighborhood. Myers was 25 when a female friend introduced her to a man she thought loved her. He controlled Myers and everything she owned. He renamed her “Lacey,” and sold her body to strangers.
“Through a touch of a button on his phone, he sold me to the highest bidder,” said Myers.
It was only after her shoplifting arrest that Myers broke free.
“There is life after the life,” said Myers.
On Wednesday, the advocate and mom shared her story with anyone listening — the face of a sometimes uncomfortable campaign with a powerful message.
“I think we all think ‘it’s not going to happen to me’ and then it does,” said Myers. “One person can and will make a difference. You have the ability to change what is happening right here in our nation; right here in West Bend, Wisconsin, throughout Wisconsin.”
Myers told those gathered at the West Bend event that she was born in Milwaukee — and her family moved to Hartford. Myers said she was very active in school. Despite this, she became a victim.
“It happened to me. It happened to my family. This isn’t something that just happens to one person and then you wake up and the problem goes away,” Myers said. “This is something that takes years to overcome — the trauma, the recovery process — but with people like you, I keep going. I keep persevering.”
Myers spoke to both teens and adults. Her advice to teens was not everyone who wants to be your friend is. Predators are very good at pretending.
For parents, Myers said be nosy. Find out who your kids are talking to in-person and, especially, online.
Serve Marketing Celebrates 15 Years of Making a Difference Through Creative Advertising
Milwaukee advertising agency best known for helping reduce city’s teen birth rate by 65 percent
MILWAUKEE – November 15, 2017 –Serve Marketing, the country’s only all-volunteer, nonprofit advertising agency, is celebrating 15 years of behavior-changing public service campaigns for nonprofits across the nation. Founded by Milwaukee ad man and BVK Executive Creative Director Gary Mueller in 2002, Serve has produced head-turning campaigns for over 100 nonprofits, contributed 125,000 volunteer hours and more than $18 million in donated services.
The agency’s most notable work has been centered on some of Milwaukee’s most critical issues ranging from teen pregnancy, human trafficking, co-sleeping, shaken baby syndrome and more.
Serve recently celebrated the results from its ongoing decade-long campaign with the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County, called “Baby Can Wait.” The initiative helped Milwaukee’s teen birth rate decline 65 percent, reaching a historic low since the campaign launched in 2006.
“We are fortunate that Serve and its community of volunteers create real, measurable change around our community’s most pressing issues,” said Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett. “Because of the agency’s captivating work, more Milwaukee teens have a future that does not include becoming a parent too young, and families in Milwaukee are proud to call their babies Strong Babies. This work is helping us change health outcomes for generations, and for that, the city of Milwaukee is enormously grateful.”
Recognized by national media like Adweek, Time, Newsweek and Huffington Post, Serve has produced award-winning work and impressive results for nonprofits across the nation:
“Turn A Life Around” in partnership with the Coalition of Children, Youth and Families, generated a 485 percent increase in foster parent inquiries in Wisconsin.
“Unlucky 13” in partnership with the Human Trafficking Task Force of Greater Milwaukee helped create unprecedented awareness of the human trafficking crisis within Milwaukee.
“Baby Can Wait” in partnership with United Way of Greater Milwaukee and Waukesha County helped to lower Milwaukee’s teen birthrate by 65 percent since 2006, reaching a historic low.
The popular “Strong Baby” campaign in partnership with the Milwaukee Health Department, and other community programs, helped Milwaukee experience a 13 percent reduction in the infant mortality rate, its lowest rate in decades.
“Get Checked Omaha” in partnership with the Women’s Fund of Omaha helped increase awareness for STD testing of adolescents, with STD tests increasing by 29 percent since September 2015.
Gary Mueller, founder of Serve Marketing, is also the agency’s Volunteer Creative Director and Managing Partner at BVK, a Top-25 independent advertising agency located in Milwaukee. His career has earned him international advertising awards and recognition, but he says it’s his work with Serve that makes him most proud. In recognition for his outstanding work and unwavering commitment to community causes, the city of Milwaukee has declared November 15 “Gary Mueller Day,” marking the 15th anniversary of Serve Marketing.
“Telling a cause’s story creatively and viscerally is the most important thing a non-profit can do,” said Gary Mueller. “In fact, it’s irresponsible to do anything less. I think it’s our obligation as ad people to help amplify the voice of these non-profit causes that too often go unheard due to limited resources and funding. We can make a real difference in the community.”
In 2018, Serve and its volunteers will be working with the Milwaukee Health Department and United Way on its ongoing infant mortality campaign, as well as teen pregnancy prevention and STD awareness, a foster care recruitment campaign for CCYF, social media and event promotions for Milwaukee-based Guitars4Vets, and continuing to increase human trafficking awareness and education in Milwaukee through campaigns with Lacey’s Hope and Exploit No More organizations.
Serve Marketing is the country’s only, all-volunteer, nonprofit advertising agency, whose mission is to give underserved charitable causes a stronger voice in the community. Founded by Milwaukee ad man, Gary Mueller in 2002, Serve volunteers have created behavior-changing public service campaigns for over 100 local and national nonprofits on issues ranging from teen homelessness, domestic violence and human trafficking to teen pregnancy, STD prevention and infant mortality. Causes that aren’t hot. That aren’t sexy. And that don’t have a lot of money. Serve’s provocative brand of work is sometimes controversial, but it gets people to notice and talk about these silent causes, which leads to an increase in awareness, volunteerism and funding. To date, Serve has donated over $18 million of in-kind creative, media, web, PR, print and broadcast production and strategic planning services to non-profits.
On Thursday, September 7th United Adworkers hosted it’s 3rd Annual All-Star Softball game at Miller Park’s Helfaer Field. The game included live performances from the Milwaukee Children’s Choir Kendra Kebara and In Tandem Theatre’s Chris Flieller. Thanks to our event sponsors, All-Star players, game attendees and fans, we were able to raise $1,000 to benefit the United Performing Arts Fund (UPAF)!