Bold Branding to Combat the Epic Pandemic

coronavirus, branding, pandemic, covid-19, marketing, Park City, Promontory, Alaska Fur Gallery, Diversified bars and Restaurants, Woodside Homes, Peloton, Airbnb, Google Arts and Culture, OrangeTheory, DoorDash, Kroger, Salt Lake Tribune, brand strategy

Now more than ever, it’s essential for your brand to be ahead of the pack. How you conduct business and set yourself apart during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will leave an enduring impression on your employees and the public. Many businesses from local to international are quickly adapting their business practices and engaging in new socially responsible initiatives. They are gaining greater brand awareness and new customers while positioning their business in a positive light. Some companies are able to use this time to innovate – just imagine all the new technology that will be born as a result of COVID-19.

It’s important to maintain your brand’s authenticity during these challenging times, and determine what new strategies you can incorporate that are aligned with your company’s culture. Consider your brand’s value proposition and the unique role it plays in your customers’ lives. This will guide you in determining how your service or product can help customers through the pandemic and make their lives easier and more satisfying. Think of your brand as a weapon for fighting the pandemic.

Digital marketing rules the roost when you can’t meet with clients and serve customers face to face. We are all receiving email communications from every company we have ever made a purchase from to outline their COVID-19 response. These are designed to show customers they care and to instill confidence. What messaging can you include that will differentiate your business from the others so it gets read? Any email messaging should also be modified for social media and press releases. If you have been in business for a while, you already know the best mediums to use for reaching your audience – be sure to take advantage of them all.

Here are examples of brands that are standing out during this Corona Crisis:

Peloton – The home fitness giant is offering their app for a free 90-day trial of on-demand workouts without requiring credit card info. What a smart way to gain new fitness devotees and inspire people to become exercise junkies while social distancing.

Showtime – The cable network offered free viewing for a week. You can bet many customers got hooked on certain shows and decided to subscribe as a result.

Google Arts & Culture Museum Tours – Stuck at home during self-quarantine? Google Arts & Culture is offering virtual tours of 2,500 of the world’s most renowned museums. Take a tour from your couch of famous museums like the Guggenheim in New York, the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, and the Musee d’Orsay in Paris.

Airbnb – Not only did they relax their reservation policies to fully refund travelers whose vacation rental reservations were impacted by coronavirus, but they are working with hosts to provide free places to stay for healthcare workers and first responders. This allows those on the frontline to be near their patients and safely distanced from their own families.

DoorDash – The food delivery service has eliminated its delivery fees to encourage more customers to support restaurants, an industry that has been disproportionally impacted by the coronavirus outbreak.

OrangeTheory – Check out their website for free daily workout routines designed to be done at home.

Kroger Grocery Stores – They are offering a pre-opening hour for seniors to shop for groceries in addition to free pick up service.

Salt Lake Tribune – The daily newspaper is offering readers complimentary website access to local stories covering coronavirus, a great strategy for gaining new subscribers while showing they care about keeping the public informed.

Examples from Redhead Marketing & PR Clients

Woodside Homes – The national homebuilder is collecting masks and protective eyewear from their trade partners that will be donated to healthcare facilities. They’re also allowing interested homebuyers to visit their sales offices and model homes by appointment with an alternative option to tour homes virtually.

Alaska Fur Gallery – The luxury retailer is offering their biggest sale ever for all merchandise. Not only are all items discounted by 50-80%, but 5% of each sale will be donated to the Park City Community Foundation’s Community Response Fund (or to the non-profit of the customer’s choice in their own community that is serving the needs of those impacted by the virus).

Diversified Bars & Restaurants – A Park City, Utah-based restaurant group is selling gift cards and donating 100% of the proceeds to their employees. This is a feel-good approach to encouraging customers to support their staff and then enjoy a visit to the establishments when they reopen.

Promontory Club – The exclusive, vacation home community in Park City is partnering with the Park City Community Foundation to provide a $10,000 impact grant for the Community Response Fund. The fund will provide immediate support to non-profits helping those in Summit County adversely impacted by the pandemic.

Take some comfort in the fact that this economic downturn was precipitated by a public health crisis, not a deregulated housing crisis run amok as we experienced in 2008. Most analysts agree that when the pandemic subsides, pent up demand for services, goods, and travel will be released. This could be as soon as the 3rd quarter of this year, depending on the extent to which the virus is contained, the promise of a vaccine, the availability of treatment drugs, and effectiveness of the stimulus package. Your company needs to maintain a strong presence in the meantime, so it is well positioned to capture business when the economy improves. We are all in this epic pandemic together and will get through it stronger than ever!

Promontory Foundation Provides Aid During Coronavirus Pandemic

PROMONTORY FOUNDATION PLEDGES $10,000 IMPACT GRANT TOWARD PARK CITY COMMUNITY FOUNDATION’S COMMUNITY RESPONSE FUND

Promontory Foundation Supports Park City Community Foundation's Community Response Fund

PARK CITY, UTAH –Three weeks following the announcement ofthe partnership between Promontory Foundation, Promontory Club’s 501(c)(3) non-profit, and Park City Community Foundation to develop Impact Grants within the Park City community, Promontory Foundation has pledged a $10,000 impact grant for the Community Response Fund. This fund, hosted by Park City Community Foundation, is designed to strengthen the ability of local non-profits on the front line of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to respond immediately. 

“Promontory Members have asked how they can help, and I am grateful that I can direct them to The Community Response Fund,” says Robin Milne, Promontory Foundation President.  “We have asked that our lead grant multiply by at least 10-fold in order to build $100,000 or more towards this effort to “help the helpers” in Park City.”

The Community Response Fund, hosted by Park City Community Foundation, will offer flexible resources to organizations in Summit County working with communities who are disproportionately impacted by coronavirus and the economic consequences of this outbreak.

“Promontory Foundation’s generous pledge and efforts to inspire Park City residents to participate will amplify our efforts during this challenging time for our community and ensure our local non-profits can make a meaningful impact in providing essential relief,” says Katie Wright, Executive Director of Park City Community Foundation. “We encourage everyone in a position to support the fund to do so by visiting https://parkcitycf.org/communityresponsefund/.”

The fund will support health and human services non-profits in greater Park City that are handling cases related to the impact of COVID-19. Targeted operating grants will fund organizations that have deep roots in community and strong experience working with residents without health insurance and/or access to sick days, people with limited English language proficiency, healthcare and gig economy workers, and communities of color, among others.

The first phase of rapid-response grants, initiated within the next few weeks, will increase resiliency in disproportionately affected communities by addressing the economic impact of reduced and lost work due to the broader COVID-19 outbreak, and the immediate needs of economically vulnerable populations caused by COVID-19 related closures.

ABOUT PROMONTORY

Promontory is an award-winning 6,400-acre recreational second home and private mountain community in Park City, Utah. Promontory’s expansive mountain setting offers diverse year-round amenities and activities for the multi-generational family. The community consists of 1,674 homesites with stunning mountain views. More than 613 homes have been built, and there are approximately 657 Members of the private, Promontory Club. Seven of Promontory’s 27 distinct neighborhoods feature developer-built homes, known as Promontory HOMES. These include the new, modern Portfolio of Homes in Pinnacle at Promontory. For more information, visit www.promontoryclub.com.

About Park City Community Foundation: 

Park City Community Foundation plays a vital role in solving the most challenging problems in Park City. We care for and invest in our people, place, and culture by bringing together local nonprofits, donors, and community leaders to contribute financial resources and innovative ideas to benefit all the people of Park City—now and in the future. As the home of Live PC Give PC, Women’s Giving Fund, Solomon Fund, and other important initiatives, the Community Foundation has brought millions of dollars to the greater Park City community and Summit County. Learn more about donating, volunteering, fundraising and getting involved in the generosity of Park City at parkcitycf.org.

Restaurant Group in Park City Aids Staff with Gift Card Proceeds

DIVERSIFIED BARS AND RESTAURANTS TO RAISE FUNDS FOR SERVICE STAFF THROUGH GIFT CARD SALES

100% of gift card sale proceeds will be donated to staff at No Name Saloon/The Annex, Boneyard Saloon, Wine Dive, Butcher’s Chop House & Bar

In an immediate effort to support employees in the wake of the Summit County Health Department ban on dine-in service that is effective today, March 15, Diversified Bars and Restaurants (DBR) will donate the proceeds of all gift card sales to its service staff family. Gift cards to DBR-owned establishments in Park City can be purchased online at No Name Saloon/The Annex, Butcher’s Chop House & Bar, and Boneyard Saloon/Wine Dive. Given the loss of work during Park City’s peak spring break season, the loss of income hospitality workers depend on will be a great hardship.

“We understand and accept the closures are essential to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and to protect our staff, customers, and community,” acknowledges Jesse Shetler, Principal Owner of Diversified Bars and Restaurants. “Our family of staff members is legitimately concerned by the detrimental loss of income they typically rely on in March to get them through shoulder season. The outpouring of support from the close-knit Park City community is a massive source of comfort to them. We developed the gift card sale promotion as a vehicle for community members who are eager to help to do so, and we look forward to welcoming customers back when we can safely reopen, undoubtedly with additional protocols in place.”

DBR is currently developing additional methods to support its staff. Meanwhile, the company is educating employees on how to stay healthy, offering guidance on how to work with their lenders and landlords to reduce payments, and providing healthcare-related resources.

“Our town has been through challenging times in the past, including September 11th and the recession that followed, and we always get through them stronger than ever. The generosity that our community is known for is crucial in helping small businesses and hospitality staff overcome this public health crisis,” says Ron Wedig, Managing Partner of DBR. 

The Case for Proactive Coronavirus Communications

No matter the nature of your business, chances are it is being impacted on some level by the coronavirus pandemic. While this is a stressful, uncertain time, it is temporary. And we are all in it together. How your business addresses this public health challenge is a reflection of your brand for both the short and long term. This is not the time to panic, but to be proactive and calculated in developing a communications strategy.

Consider what you can do to keep employees and customers safe and how you will communicate any new or expanded measures you are enacting. Follow guidelines from local, state, and national officials, and, if possible, go above and beyond them as feasible and appropriate. What kind of support and guidance can you offer your staff if they can’t come to work because they’re ill or their children’s schools are closed? Come up with a list of procedures and local resources for them to consult should they be unable to work. And, if viable, compensation for missed work. They are looking to you for leadership.

Positively leverage this situation as an opportunity to instill confidence in your employees and customers. Show the community you care and are taking proper precautions. Once you have established your procedures, it’s time to communicate them to preserve your image and your business. Spread your message via the communications channels you normally use, whether that is social media, email marketing platforms, website, and press release distribution. And be consistent. Your proactive message doesn’t have to convey doom and gloom – frame it in a way that reflects your brand and resonates with your audience.

Have a protocol and communications plan in place should COVID-19 make an appearance at your business, whether it’s contracted by a customer or employee. Be prepared with appropriate messaging for both your staff and the public, so you aren’t caught off guard and facing damage control without a well thought out plan. We have seen this occurrence with businesses of all sizes – independently owned and local to global companies. Which scenario would you prefer: having an employee get sick following your efforts to put every possible precautionary measure in place, or after you have done nothing differently? The former puts you in a much more enviable position to respond to questions and criticisms from the public and the press.

As a small company, we are sympathetic to businesses facing this dilemma. If you need communications guidance during this time, we will do our best to work within your budget. Redhead Marketing & PR can easily partner with companies in Park City, Salt Lake City, and outside of Utah. We all have the same end goal – to get through this epidemic as unscathed as possible. Be sensible, stay healthy, and take care of your families, employees, and communities.

Habitat for Humanity Advocates for Utah Affordable Housing in DC

REPRESENTATIVES OF HABITAT FOR HUMANITY OF SUMMIT AND WASATCH COUNTIES ATTENDED HABITAT ON THE HILL RALLY FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN WASHINGTON, D.C.

Leadership met with Utah legislators during their visit to discuss local housing needs

Each year, Habitat on the Hill, an event spearheaded by Habitat for Humanity International, unites hundreds of its affiliates in Washington, D.C., to call on Congress to support federal policies and programs that promote access to safe, decent and affordable housing around the country. Habitat for Humanity of Summit & Wasatch Counties had the opportunity join the effort for the first time this month and act as a voice for the local community to impact policy at the state and national levels. Shellie Barrus and Alison Kuhlow traveled to Capitol Hill to bring attention to the fact that one in six U.S. households are paying half or more of their income on housing, an epidemic that is all too familiar to those in the greater Park City community.

Habitat affiliates urged members of Congress to support the Neighborhood Homes Investment Act, a policy priority of Habitat’s “Cost of Home”campaign. This important federal legislation supports the building and rehabilitating of single-family homes in distressed neighborhoods, enabling communities to thrive.

“With the first two of our Silver Creek Village homes under construction and the ever-increasing affordable housing needs in our community, we felt this year made sense to start laying the groundwork for greater advocacy efforts in the future,” says Shellie Barrus. “Lack of affordable housing impacts all of our daily lives – from those who need it to employers to educators to healthcare workers. This was an unprecedented, meaningful opportunity for us to rally on the Hill and meet with our local representatives in a national forum.”

On February 12, Kuhlow and Barrus met with staff from Utah’s Congressional offices to share Summit and Wasatch Counties’ needs for government support that would expand affordable housing.

ABOUT HABITAT FOR HUMANITY OF SUMMIT & WASATCH COUNTIES

Founded in 1995, Habitat for Humanity of Summit and Wasatch Counties, Utah (“Habitat”) is an affiliate of Habitat for Humanity, a leading global nonprofit working in nearly 1,400 communities throughout the U.S. and in nearly 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat to build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Through shelter, we empower. More information about Habitat for Humanity of Summit and Wasatch Counties can be found at www.habitat-utah.org.

The Redhead Branding Roadshow

Do you know what a brand is? Chances are you have some vague concept of what it consists of, but maybe can’t quite put your finger on it. Throughout our ten years in business, we have found that branding is often a mystery to clients. Many falsely confuse a brand with a logo. Erroneous! A brand is not a logo. This is why we are embarking on a Redhead Branding Roadshow!

Companies have told us they just want a logo; however, designing a logo without developing your brand is ineffective, misguided, and a complete waste of time. Would you hire an interior designer to decorate your home without seeing it or getting a sense of who you are? Probably not! We have had several clients seeking a better solution after hiring a graphic designer to create a logo. One hundred concepts later, nothing resonated because the designer was shooting in the dark. Thorough and thoughtful strategy is essential to developing your brand, your identity, your story, and how your customers will discover you and ultimately, embrace you. And the best news ever? It’s never too late to embark on the strategy journey to develop your brand or to rebrand. A brand continually evolves, just like your business. Ultimately, your brand is not what you declare it to be. It’s how others perceive it. You can influence that with strategy.

The confusion about the concept of branding is prevalent. This, coupled with the gratification we receive from helping many businesses shape their brand, led us to the idea of educating “the masses” via branding workshops. We are offering these fun, eye-opening sessions to various entities, such as members of co-working spaces, professional associations, rotary clubs, entrepreneur groups, and conferences. We invite you to join us! Check our website and Facebook for updates on when and where these interactive workshops and discussions will be held.

UPCOMING WORKSHOPS

The Essentials of Branding – It’s More than a logo
February 18 at Noon
Park City Chamber Members at Park City Hospital, Blair Education Center

Deconstructing Brand Strategy – a mock branding session
March 5 at Noon-1:00 p.m.
Kiln at The Gateway in Salt Lake City
Open to the Public
Cupcakes from LuAnn’s in Park City

Deconstructing Brand Strategy – a mock branding session
March 11 at Noon
We Work in Lehi, Utah
Open to the Public
Free lunch provided by Redhead client Jafflz

So what is Redhead’s secret sauce for developing a brand? We have created our own strategy to guide clients to define :

  • their mission statement
  • their ideal customers and their lifestyles
  • the customer journey – how their products or services will be discovered
  • messaging, tone, look and feel for all marketing initiatives
  • the tagline
  • the competitor landscape – what do they do well, what can you do better or differently?

We are already receiving an enthusiastic response from various business communities about our branding workshop. Please contact us if you are interested in having us present to your professional association, conference, or co-working space.

Deconstructing Brand Strategy Poster

Campos Coffee to Host Fundraiser for Australian Wildlife

CAMPOS COFFEE TO HOST “REBUILDING OUR ROOTS: TO AUSTRALIA WITH LOVE” IN SALT LAKE CITY TO SUPPORT AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITIES AND WILDLIFE DEVASTATED BY RECENT WILDFIRES

The ticketed fundraiser will be held on February 13 at Campos Coffee’s Edison Street Location

Australian specialty coffee roaster, Campos Coffee, will be hosting a pre-Valentine’s Day fundraiser, Rebuilding Our Roots: To Australia with Love, to support the wildlife relief effort in the wake of Australia’s devastating wildfires. The event will take place at Campos’ Salt Lake City location on Thursday, February 13, 6:00-9:00 p.m. Tickets are available for $50 and include passed hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, wine, beer, and live music. Special guests Utah Jazz player Joe Ingles and his wife, Renae, a gold medalist netballer and winner of the International Player of the Year Award, will be in attendance. A silent auction will feature exciting offerings including a trip to Australia, coffee brewing equipment, and gear signed by Utah Jazz team members. Additional auction items include coffee brewing equipment, wine classes, whiskey tastings, Jazz tickets, and private chef-catered meals. Proceeds from the event will be donated to WIRES (Wildlife Information Rescue and Education Service, Inc.), an Australian non-profit that has provided wildlife rescue services for more than 30 years. 

“Given Utah’s affinity for wildlife and the environment, we thought having an event to serve as a fun platform for raising funds to provide relief to Australia’s animals would appeal to our local community,” says Hillary Merrill, Head of Retail, Campos Coffee USA. 

The devastation the bushfires have caused will have long-term impacts on wildlife and communities as a result of the millions of acres of charred land and decimated homes. Millions of birds, reptiles and mammals, including Australia’s beloved koalas, have been killed. Wildlife that survived will face challenges with respect to term food, water, and habitat.

“Campos Coffee is built on communities and bringing people together over coffee. While the Campos Coffee’s roasting operations have fortunately been unaffected by the fires, many of our café partners in towns across Australia have been severely impacted due to local infrastructure damage and reduced tourism during the busiest period of the year.” says Rachel Pullicino, CMO of Campos Coffee. “As Australia begins to rebuild communities after the devastation, we are so grateful for the overwhelming support from our friends all over America, and the Salt Lake fundraiser is a unique way for people in our local community to get involved.”

Fundraiser Details:

Thursday, February 13, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Campos Coffee, 228 S. Edison, Salt Lake City
Tickets can be purchased at:  https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/rebuilding-our-roots-sending-love-to-australia-tickets-92113860035

Park City Santa Pub Crawl 2019

It’s the most wonderful night of the year! The annual Park City Santa Pub Crawl is an excellent opportunity for locals to take over Historic Main Street before the crowds of winter visitors arrive. Taking place this year on Saturday, December 7, the pub crawl has grown exponentially since its launch nine years ago. The festive night welcomes those 21 and over to don holiday-themed costumes and spread holiday cheer to the bars on Main Street. Pub crawlers comprise a healthy mix of ages from those in their 20s to 70s, so there’s no excuse not to join the several hundred crawlers we anticipate once again. It’s quite a spectacle as people tend to get seriously clever with their costumes. Expect plenty of reindeer, gingerbread men, Mrs Clauses, Santa Clauses, Santa’s Little Helpers, human Christmas Trees, Jesuses, angels, and more! And if you don’t want to go over the top, just a Santa hat will do. Best part? It’s free! Just pay for what you consume, and please bring an unwrapped, new toy to donate to the Operation Hope Toy Drive at Downstairs. They will be distributed to Summit County children.

While the Santa Pub Crawl originally consisted mostly of Park City locals, the word sure has gotten out. People travel from Salt Lake City, Heber City, and even out of state to join the revelry which coincides with Deer Valley Resort’s opening day. Crawlers are welcome to join from the start or at any of the bars along the way.


Recommendations: plan a safe way to get home or book a hotel room (Park City Peaks is offering a special rate to those who mention the pub crawl when booking). It’s also wise to bring cash. Packed bars mean it can be a wait for credit cards to be processed. 

Here’s the schedule:

6-6:45 Butcher’s Chop House and Bar – a perfect gathering spot to fuel up on food before a night of imbibing
6:45 – 8:15 Downstairs – this always becomes a big dance party with a DJ
8:15-10:30 No Name, The Spur, and Flanagans – with so many attendees, we are spreading out between the three bars. Take your pick or stop at them all! (Rage Against the Supreme, a local favorite, is performing at The Spur)

End of night Crawler party:
10pm- 1am:
The Cabin’s new location at 427 Main St.

USMC CORPORAL TIMOTHY JEFFERS TO BE PRESENTED WITH MORTGAGE-FREE SMART HOME IN WOODSIDE HOMES COMMUNITY IN RIVERSIDE COUNTY, CA

Injured veteran to receive home in Woodside Homes community
Corporal Timothy Jeffers

The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation Will Hold a Special Ceremony to Honor Corporal Jeffers and Dedicate His New House on Veterans Day, November 11, 2019

On Veterans Day, Monday, November 11, the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation will present USMC Corporal Timothy Jeffers with the keys to a mortgage-free home through its Smart Home program. The event will honor his service and celebrate his new home in Woodside Homes’ Dakota at Audie Murphy Ranch community in Menifee, CA. The community address is 24524 Round Meadow Dr., Menifee , CA 92585. Timothy chose a model to be specially modified for his physical needs, from the overall design of the property down to specific Smart Home features. Since he has only seen the model and not his actual home, the event will serve as both a celebration and a grand reveal. Corporal Jeffers will receive a police escort to his home at noon. A ceremony will follow at which time the Tunnel to Towers Foundation will present the home to Corporal Jeffers. Media is welcome to cover the event.

“Our entire team is excited and proud that Corporal Jeffers chose to have a home built at our Dakota at Audie Murphy Ranch community. It offers a tranquil setting surrounded by the beautiful San Jacinto and San Bernardino Mountains,” says Chris Chambers, President of Woodside Homes’ Southern California Division. “We’re thrilled to be a part of what will surely be an emotional Veteran’s Day event to commemorate Jeffers’ courage and service while presenting him the keys to his beautiful home.” We hope that his Smart Home and our special community provide him with enjoyable, independent living for many years to come.”

Corporal Timothy Jeffers, USMC, graduated from Fountain Valley High School in Fountain Valley, CA. He served as a motor transport operator in Iraq’s Anbar Province. On May 18, 2006, Corporal Jeffers was severely wounded when he dismounted a security vehicle in a convoy and was the victim of an IED explosion. He sustained severe head and abdominal injuries, lost both of his legs above the knee, a finger on his right hand, and his right eye. While his rehabilitation is ongoing, he enjoys many activities like attending sporting events, fishing, lobster trapping, and surfing with the VA Rehabilitation Activities Department. Timothy’s Smart Home will be equipped with everything he needs to continue recovery and live a fulfilling, independent life.

The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation is a national non-profit organization whose mission is to honor the sacrifice of firefighter Stephen Siller (FDNY). On September 11th, 2001, Stephen Siller courageously gave his life to save others.  He was wearing 65 pounds of gear as he ran through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel to the Twin Towers when they collapsed. Tunnel to Towers honors the sacrifices of Stephen and many others by creating programs for injured service members, fallen first responders, and Gold Star families. The Smart Home Program was established to construct specially-adapted, custom-designed Smart Homes for America’s most catastrophically injured service members. Corporal Jeffers is the latest beneficiary of this program.

Adjacent to the mountains of San Bernardino, Dakota at Audie Murphy Ranch is a beautiful, rural location surrounded by natural rock formations, rolling acres, and magnificent trees. The community provides convenient access to nearby highways, restaurants, shopping, and entertainment.

Chelsea Film Festival 2018 Winner Live on Amazon

CHELSEA FILM FESTIVAL BEST DIRECTOR AWARD WINNER DEBUTS ON AMAZON

Maki, a Japanese-Language Film, was Shot in New York and Directed by Iranian-American Filmmaker Naghmeh Shirkhan

Maki, a film directed by Iranian-American female filmmaker Naghmeh Shirkhan who is based in New Jersey, won the Best Director award at the 2018 Chelsea Film Festival. As of October, independent film enthusiasts can view Maki on Amazon.

Maki is live on Amazon

Filmed in just 18 days in New York City and the Hudson Valley, the story centerson a young Japanese woman (Maki, the film’s namesake) who comes to New York to start a new life. While working as a hostess at a bar catering to Japanese businessmen, she maintains an illicit relationship with the bartender. As the modern-day immigrant story unfolds, Maki discovers she is part of a wider, nefarious scheme led by the club’s Mama-san.

“I’m so delighted that Maki is becoming more accessible to a wider audience now that it is available to watch on Amazon,” says Naghmeh Shirkhan. “It’s gratifying that it continues to receive a great response and has a home online.”

Renowned Japanese actress Mieko Harada plays the Mama-San; Julian Cihi is Tommy, the bartender, and Naomi Sundberg makes her debut as Maki.

For more info, visit www.maki-film.com.