Member Profile: Ackermerc
Ackermerc is a content creation company run by husband and wife duo Mercedes and Sam Ackerman.
Between them, the pair have more than three decades worth of experience in design, storytelling, written, audio and video contention creation, broadcasting, media training, MC work and strategic communications – quite the range of skills!
Mercedes has been responsible for award-winning design and brand development with organisations such as Givealittle, National Rugby League (NRL), the Telecom Foundation, Red Bull, Microsoft, Nickelodeon, Mediaworks, Canteen, Fletcher Building and many many more. She is also highly sought after as a social media advisor and content creator, with a proven track record of increasing engagement and finding the right tone for each organisation.
Meanwhile Sam may be a familiar face for some in his past role with MediaWorks / Newshub as a sports journalist / producer. An experienced and empathetic storyteller, with almost two decades in broadcasting on TV and radio, Sam has been involved with media training for high-profile local and national organisations, and is experienced in media management, strategic communications and crisis management.
“We are proud of what Tauranga businesses achieve and know they have engaging stories to tell their customers – both locally and around Aotearoa,” says Mercedes.
“We’re not an overstaffed organisation, we’re a team that talks with our clients directly and gets to understand their goals before helping them achieve them.
“We can’t wait to work closely with them to help deliver their message and vision in ways they didn’t know possible.”
Quick fire Q&A with our member:
Why is quality content vital to a business?
Just like the product or service you provide, you need the customer to have faith in you. Quality matters in what you sell, so it has to be important in how you present yourself, your company and your product. There’s no point making, for example, the best chocolate fish in New Zealand and not putting any effort into the packaging. You need to get your message across and leave an impression. That’s why quality is the crucial word.
How can a business work through /understand what kind of content they need to best showcase their business?
Never underestimate the benefit of outside eyes. It can often be hard to find the right story to showcase your business or the right tone to promote yourself on social media when you’re so close to it – it can be hard to know what detail to include or leave out. Having an expert sit down with you and help you identify what makes your business most appealing to customers often brings with it surprising and productive answers.
With regards to media training, what are the top three mistakes most businesses make when dealing with the media?
Seeing the media as the enemy, thinking the media should be interested in details that are too in-house or industry specific, and not being prepared when it comes to speaking to the media, be it local or national level.
What benefits and risks are there in dealing with media, and how can you help businesses mitigate these?
The benefits are speaking directly to the public and potential customer bases. It allows them to see you as more than just a logo on shelves or a shop they walk past, it gives you an identity, a personality and credibility, whether it’s dealing with positive or negative news.
The risks are not being prepared for it or knowing how to handle the situation. Sometimes what might seem like a simple message can get lost in translation.
Training and preparation are your best bets. Avoiding the media is like a rugby player not practicing dropkicks – it may not be a skill you need to use often but when you do, you need it to go well. It’s always so pleasing to see clients walk out of media and presentation training with more confidence.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Like everyone associated with the Chamber, we’re proud to be part of the Tauranga business community. We know how much our region has to offer and how dedicated everyone is to supporting and working local, now more than ever. We’re seriously excited about what lies ahead and can’t wait for the opportunity to collaborate with more businesses here in our slice of paradise.