Boerne Business Monthly Features Penguin Suits
Boerne Business Monthly recently featured Penguin Suits! The article, "Penguin Suits: Helping Small Businesses Grow Through Creative, Results-Oriented Marketing," was originally published in the January 2017 issue of Boerne Business Monthly.
Read the full-text below:
When Debi Lamb-Burrows, owner of Penguin Suits, a Boerne advertising/marketing firm, was only 9 she wrote her first press release.
“After dinner one evening, while the women washed the dishes, I sat with the men while they discussed what was happening with their businesses. I heard that my dad was planning to bring in a band to his restaurant/tavern to help business,” Burrows remarked.
Although adults back in the ‘70s thought children should be seen and not heard, the young girl spoke up.
“I suggested they put an announcement in the newspaper, but it appeared nobody knew what I was talking about.”
Not to be denied, she wrote a story about the band performing at her father’s restaurant on a yellow loose-leaf paper and presented it to the local newspaper along with a Polaroid picture.
“They ran it,” Burrows exclaimed. “Soon after I got to watch everyone come in and see the restaurant do really well.”
From that success grew a passion for marketing and promotion. In high school, she was the person who wrote about teacher recognitions, designed posters and invitations, and promoted all the dances.
“I knew what I was going to go to college for back when I was 9. I wanted to learn marketing to help small businesses,” she says.
Penguin Suits Is Born
After college, Burrows landed a job working in public relations and advertising for the New York State Nurses Association. In 1992, she moved from New York to Texas with her 2-week-old son.
“Back then, the Internet was just starting. But I couldn’t afford a computer or do anything. So I started hand painting children’s clothes,” she says.
A Penguin outfit she made for her son drew raves from her local mom’s group. They wanted their own favorite animal outfit for their kids.
Soon after, Burrows put up a website and was marketing her shirts and designs across the country and even as far away as Germany. Her sales brought in enough money to buy a computer and start her marketing business in Boerne – proudly named Penguin Suits after the apparel which started it all. “That’s how Penguin Suits was born. My son’s original suit hangs in our office today,” she remarks.
Your Marketing Department
After its incorporation in 2001, Penguin Suits evolved into a complete, one-source marketing company. Burrows and her staff of eight manage all aspects of marketing designed to generate customer leads for clients – from creating websites and logos to implementing comprehensive marketing campaigns.
Most of their clients come from Boerne, San Antonio, and surrounding communities. But they also serve a client in Dallas and another whose business is in New Mexico.
The challenges Burrows faced early on are similar to what the firm faces today.
“Businesses back then didn’t know what they needed to cost-effectively market their business. It’s nearly the same today,” she says.
“Many local business owners are really good at what they do, but they don’t know how to get the word out to their target market. That’s what we do best.
“And that’s why we promote ourselves as Your Marketing Department. Our team of experts has mastered the complexity and technical aspects of today’s marketing. While most small businesses don’t have the time or expertise to market effectively, we do,” she says.
Burrows explains that one of their jobs is to educate people – for instance, why they should have a website, why they need a professional to design their business cards, or what is the best marketing strategy for their business.
A primary goal at Penguin Suits is to help local companies grow their business. And over the years, it has done that exceedingly well.
“We took on one business that was struggling. We redesigned their website, digital ads, and their entire marketing campaign. We focused all their SEO (search engine optimization) and within six months they grew their business 30%,” she says.
“We’ve taken other businesses where their social media was doing poorly and where they were spending considerable money on Google AdWords, but without seeing good results. By improving their social media, their website, and SEO, we were able to completely eliminate their AdWords budget. The result? They got more customer leads and eliminated spending hundreds of dollars a month on AdWords.”
To ensure clients’ get a good return on investment, Penguin Suits continuously evaluates all aspects of their marketing campaign. It’s part of the firm’s accountability process. “We show clients how long we’ve worked on all parts of their campaign, the development we’ve done, the expected return, and what we’re doing to map that return. When things don’t go the way we want, we make adjustments until we get the desired result,” Burrows declares.
“I want to be sure my clients understand what we’re doing for them and where their money is going. I want them to know – when they succeed, we succeed.”
Written by Joseph Lilli