Marathon Strategies launches DefendED, a dedicated higher education crisis practice focused on helping campus leaders rethink the way they communicate and manage their public profiles. The program includes a package of specialty services including full risk assessment (helping institutions understand their vulnerabilities through such strategies as executive leadership background vetting, partner and donor vetting, and an audit of communication collateral used for faculty and students); crisis playbook development; strategic communications support; plagiarism reviews and sentiment monitoring. “The past few months have shown that university officials need to adapt to the fact that they are on the national stage and that their words will be heard by mainstream audiences,” said Marathon Strategies founder and CEO Phil Singer. “If schools don’t plan for this new reality by revamping how they approach communications – starting by assessing their own vulnerabilities – the last few weeks will feel like a fond memory. This is the new normal.”


Warschawski expands its email and lifecycle marketing team. The team now features 11 team members: seven specialists with extensive expertise across all major email marketing platforms, including Klaviyo, HubSpot, Salesforce, Pardot and Iterable; two data scientists; and two highly experienced email designers. This move is intended to strengthen Warschawski's ability to deliver holistic, integrated, results-driven campaigns in a data-first, always-on, hyper-connected environment. “We believe that email and SMS will play a progressively larger role in maximizing the value of every other marketing communications tactic, which is why we’ve made this significant investment to increase our capabilities, expertise, and capacity,” said Warschwasi EVP Sam Tomlinson.


The Motion Agency acquires Chicago-based B2B marketing firm 2.718 Marketing. Founded in 1988, the woman-owned agency serves national and global clients across higher education, building & home products, food & food ingredients, financial services, and manufacturing. It will become fully integrated with Motion, with its leadership remaining in place, including owner Liz Brohan who becomes Motion’s chief growth officer. As Motion’s fifth acquisition in 10 years, 2.718’s addition is intended to provide added value for the agency’s B2B and B2C clients. “2.718 Marketing’s bold strategic thinking and results-based approach aligned so seamlessly with Motion’s, it was a no brainer to join forces,” said Motion CEO and Founder, Kimberly Eberl.


Bekind comms, a “communications firm rooted in kindness,” is launched by Paris Kissel, who was most recently director at New Heights Communications. Bekind offers services including media outreach, event support, influencer engagement, media training and newsletter & blog writing. Kissel previously worked for close to a decade as a publicist at DC-based firms including Qorvis, Spitfire, and LEVICK. The firm, which works with “changemakers, nonprofits, businesses, events and influencers,” says its commitment to prioritizing kindness, fostering positivity, and reshaping narratives results in a “zero-tolerance policy for toxicity.”