Category: Uncategorized

Nun-sense

The Punching Nun Group Blog

Musings from 75 years of combined marketing (and life) expertise. After all, marketing is life, right?

Facts Over Fear: A Quiet Entrepreneurial Rebellion is Afoot

Parents right here in Middle Tennessee are slowly—and somewhat secretly—taking back their children’s education. Why? Because the majority of public schools have chosen not to hold in-person classroom sessions due to COVID-19. This is a decision that is not supported by the American Academy of Pediatrics.[1] The AAP believes it is far more beneficial to send children to regular in-person classes—when done safely—than it is to continue at-home, online-only classes. The AAP’s COVID-19 Planning Considerations: Guidance for School Re-entry states, “the AAP strongly advocates that all policy considerations for the coming school year should start with a goal of having

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Scientist Looking for Cures

On Hope and Freedom

I’m writing this from a space the size of an old school dorm room, sitting in a narrow twin bed. It’s day 10 of a clinical trial where I am a helper to my daughter who has a form of Muscular Dystrophy called Friedrich’s Ataxia. There are no treatments, there is no cure and this trial is phase 1, meaning a safety trial—the first one with humans after a successful animal research. Risky? Yes. Scary? Yes. Painful? A bit. Due to COVID what should have been more comfortable just a few months ago is now anything but comfortable. I think

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Police and protesters' embrace during George Floyd demonstrations

The Legacy of George Floyd

I personally condemn all forms of racism, bigotry, hatred, discrimination, and violence—sins against God and humanity. Like so many other Americans, I am sickened by the brutal and pointless murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and other victims of racist violence. At an African American church, literally around the corner from my home, I attended a prayer vigil this week. Several thousand joined, including pastors, police, city officials, neighbors, adults, children—Americans. We listened quietly as one speaker after another expressed their agony, pain, and personal experiences with being treated as something less than human. We listened. It was

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Blog Hero: Tennessee, The Volunteer State

Tennessee, The Volunteer State

We are 48 hours in from the devastating tornado that tore through Nashville and roared down I40 to Cookeville, taking more than 20 lives with a long list of people still missing. And yet, Middle Tennessee has not disappointed. Although “The Volunteer State” is a reference to our involvement in the War of 1812, today it means something entirely different. I am humbled by the number of people, clients, friends, and former acquittances who have checked in on us and even offered to help those in need. When I moved to Nashville 25 years ago, I literally cried watching a

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Blog Hero: Addiction in Franklin, Tennessee

Addiction in Franklin, Tennessee

I’m crying tonight as I write this. A night out for pizza has become another lesson in the hideous tragedy of addiction. I live in a beautiful small town, Franklin, Tennessee, that I’ve often described as a real-life Hallmark movie. And yet, our children are dying. I’m tired of it. The stories, the babies left behind, the grieving parents and grandparents. In spite of the tragedy of a genetic disorder that is slowing taking my daughters mobility, I still get to call my children, talk to them, and watch them make a mark on this world. Tonight I met the

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Blog Hero: Amanda Cecconi

Amanda Cecconi invited to join Nashville Business Journal Leadership Trust NBJ LEADERSHIP TRUST IS AN INVITATION-ONLY COMMUNITY FOR TOP BUSINESS DECISION MAKERS IN MIDDLE TENNESSEE

Franklin, TN (February 5, 2020) — Amanda Cecconi, Founder and Managing Partner of Punching Nun Group, has been invited to join Nashville Business Journal Leadership Trust, an exclusive community for influential business leaders, executives and entrepreneurs in Middle Tennessee. Amanda was chosen for membership by the Nashville Business Journal Leadership Trust Selection Committee due to her experience, leadership and influence in the local business landscape and beyond. Amanda Cecconi leads Punching Nun Group, an nontraditional marketing agency, that serves as an outsourced marketing department for high-growth healthcare companies, helping them establish market position, become thought leaders, fill the sales funnel through

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Blog Hero: Kobe and Gigi Bryant

Kobe Bryant: Girls Basketball Coach SOMETIMES IT'S MORE ABOUT THE LAST THING YOU DO

January 26, 2020 — I woke to the tragic news that Kobe Bryant, his young daughter Gianna and 7 other people lost their lives. As most Americans headed to church, 9 peopled died in a fiery helicopter crash that ended on a California hillside in the fog of a Sunday morning. Like many people with an interest in girls basketball and anything connected to Italy (like me), Kobe was a fan favorite—the first of a generation of very young men to leave high school and head directly into the NBA. Can you imagine the insanity of giving a 17-year-old a

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Blog Hero: Living a Brand

Living A Brand

Tonight, I sat at a favorite bar in a brand new boutique hotel in downtown Franklin, Tennessee, named after the same river that meanders east, west, north and south throughout Williamson County—the Harpeth. After a few choice cocktails, I had to make a quick exist to the lady’s room. As I peered in the mirror, I took note of a book being read over the intercom. At first, I wasn’t sure what it was, although clearly a southern novel of some heft. After returning to the bar, I asked the young bartender what was featured in the ladies’ (and I

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New Year's 2020

New Year’s 2020

After creating so much content for clients, it can be challenging to stop the presses for a moment to develop our content (the cobbler’s children have no shoes, etc.). But as 2019 comes to an end and a new decade is upon us, it feels right to take a moment and review things at the convent. 2019 was a great year for Team Nun; we grew nearly 50%, added a few new team members, and one no non-nonsense Nun to the squad. Something I’d been trying to do for years. I’ve learned a bit of patience over the past decade,

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Central American Beauty

Central American Beauty

My daughter fell in love with the Nicaraguan people after nearly a year teaching at orphanages in the capital city and in the rural mountain areas of this Central American country. These orphanages were filled with children the government had taken from parents in this desperately poor nation—you can only imagine the abuse and neglect they had endured. Today she has a master’s degree in Latin American literature—an unusual subject perhaps—but it has given her a deep understanding of these people, their history, and aspects of the modern culture created by circumstances beyond their control. She has provided much wisdom

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Mother and Son: Amanda and Liam

Gratitude and Letting Go

Tonight, I was able to stop time. I had to take my son back to college. It was dark and warm, with an early September breeze hinting at fall. As we drove through the night with the top down, he asked if he could play some new songs over the car speakers. He was chatty and silly, everything an 18-year-old who is trying to get used to living in another location sounds like. He is still a boy, but I was driving him to his future, away from me, where the boy will transform into a man. At least, that’s

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Blog Hero: King with Sword: Social Media, a Double-Edged Sword

Social Media and The Business of Healthcare. A Double-Edged Sword.

Perhaps. Social media as a channel has been around for 40+ years. Consumer brands embraced social first, as a way to communicate with consumers and expand reach. When advertising on social media began, those same brands started pouring millions of dollars into filling newsfeeds with ads. The business of healthcare was and is a little slower to adopt social media, and rightfully so. From privacy concerns to patient sentiment to public perception, it seemed at the beginning, a little like dipping your toe in a cool pool. Waiting for other healthcare organizations to take the risk and figure out which

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Blog Hero: 911 and the United 93 heroes

Uniquely American: 911 and the Heroes of United Flight 93

“Are you guys ready? Ok, let’s roll!” Todd Beamer from Flint, MI Tom Burnett from Bloomington, MN Mark Bingham from Los Gatos, CA Jeremy Glick from Saddle River, NJ They led the revolt on United 93, saving countless lives. Even facing their own deaths, they demanded to be in control of their own destiny. They remained uniquely American till the very end. American. What does it mean? At its core, America is and remains a crazy, raucous experiment in freedom and self-governance. In the moments that count, we come together. In all other moments, we argue, fight, and state our

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Blog Hero: Fake News and the Death of Journalism

The Death of Journalism

Dearly Departed, We are gathered here today to say farewell to journalism—journalism degrees, journalism as a career, any respect for the news in general. Dead, dead, dead. I’m just a month shy of 54. When I was in college circa 1983 to 1987, Journalism was still a thing. In fact, I married a journalist (the 2nd time). A real journalist. He was an anchorman on the coast of Mississippi in the early 1980’s. Read Southern “Anchor Man.” And yes, he had the moustache and the whole nine. He told me that he was trained with the same rigor as Walter

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Blog Hero: City of Zombies

City of Zombies

I’ve had the opportunity to visit the West Coast twice in the past few months. Typically, travel is business related but these were both pleasure trips, a rare experience for the members of the convent. Although the visits were enjoyable while we ate and laughed our way through San Francisco and Seattle, it was tough not to notice the amount of homeless wandering and living on the streets. In San Francisco I was with my daughter and had to leave her for a few minutes to find the entrance for a comedy festival. Although she was surrounded by a group

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Blog Hero: Something Sweet: Serious Pie & Biscuit

Something Sweet In Seattle

After a week in the Pacific Northwest visiting Vancouver and Seattle (the city British Columbians say is “just like here but 2 hours south”) I can say without bias that the brands I’ve experienced are some of best work I’ve been witness to in some time. Perhaps it’s because I’ve been working in healthcare too long (aka the bar is very low) or I just slowed down enough to notice something that was NOT directly client-related. We visited a great little pizza place called Serious Pie near the waterfront in Seattle. I had about 30 minutes to wait, sip my

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Blog Hero: Zamperini (running)

Survival & Forgiveness, Life Lessons from Louis Zamperini

Louis Zamperini having reached his 97th year went to heaven on July 2, 2014, after living what can only be described as a miraculous, amazing, extraordinary life. For those who have not read the book about his life Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption (2010) by Laura Hillenbrand, I highly recommend this well-written story that I’m pleased to say is being made into an epic movie as I type. Actress and movie director Angelina Jolie has taken on the auspicious task of producing what must be a Herculean effort to encapsulate perhaps the most amazing

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Blog Hero: It's a Wonderful Life

It Really Is a Wonderful Life …

At this time of year in the Cecconi family, one of our favorite ways to celebrate Christmas and the end of another year is to watch Frank Capra’s 1946 film It’s a Wonderful Life. Along with A Christmas Carol, Holiday Inn and White Christmas, these movies exemplify the best of the holiday season no matter how many years pass from their original premiers. My father, Peter, is from Indiana, Pennsylvania, the same town where Jimmy Stewart was born and raised. Jimmy’s father owned a hardware store that also offered art supplies, thus making my father a customer from an early

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Blog Hero: Project YOU

Project YOU

A new client joined the ranks of PNG this month and as I typically do—when I see something really interesting that I know they’ll relate to—I send them a link. A post caught my eye this morning; a presentation on SlideShare by Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha called Start-up of You. Any PPT that kicks-off with the requisite cave man analogy morphing into European basketball is certain to catch my eye. The ol’ “differentiate or die” story is really coming home to roost for many of us in our mid-life. For thousands of the sandwich generation reinvention of ourselves is

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Blog Hero: Nun Surfing: On Taking Chances

On Taking Chances

On nearly my 48th birthday I did something a little crazy—I jumped out of a plane at 14,000 feet, yep more than 2 ½ miles straight up and then—straight down at 120 miles an hour. I’d wanted to do that for 25 years but money, time, guilt over having small kids, fear, (life) got in the way. Coincidently, I’d just read an interesting piece put together by a Pastor about taking chances. The Readers Digest version: you’re going to fall if you try surfing, in fact you expect that you’ll fall, but the ride is worth the risk. That dove

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Blog Hero: Next Gen Corporate Marketing

The Next Generation of Corporate Marketing

Increasingly, companies recognize their future is only as promising as their ability to turn strategy into action. Unique among strategic consulting firms, we bring a purpose-driven perspective transitioning a CEO’s vision into an action plan. The Punching Nun Group provides support to start-ups and mid-sized businesses for a fraction of the cost of hiring a full-time executive to market your company. Our clients benefit from the human capital of our entire executive team.

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Blog Hero: CEO's Marketing Right-Hand

The CEO’s Marketing Right Hand

Think of Us as Your Marketing Director The CEO should be the #1 marketing visionary for the company. Our job is to capture, articulate and implement that vision to support growth and expansion. The Punching Nun’s job is to translate your value proposition into an insightful, actionable and measurable strategic marketing plan that delivers results. We provide a client-centered perspective along with the skills and experience to turn your plan into the kind of action that drives sales.

Read More »
Blog Hero: Clarity / Relevance

Distinctive Clarity and Relevance

Distinctive Clarity and RelevanceFor Your Company A company gains enormous advantage when it knows explicitly where it is going and how it will get there… The Punching Nun Group incorporates your financial, product and sales/marketing strategy into a comprehensive, succinct plan to support fund raising, internal communication and external presentation of your organization’s goals and objectives.

Read More »

Facts Over Fear: A Quiet Entrepreneurial Rebellion is Afoot

Parents right here in Middle Tennessee are slowly—and somewhat secretly—taking back their children’s education. Why? Because the majority of public schools have chosen not to hold in-person classroom sessions due to COVID-19. This is a decision that is not supported by the American Academy of Pediatrics.[1] The AAP believes it is far more beneficial to

Read More »
Scientist Looking for Cures

On Hope and Freedom

I’m writing this from a space the size of an old school dorm room, sitting in a narrow twin bed. It’s day 10 of a clinical trial where I am a helper to my daughter who has a form of Muscular Dystrophy called Friedrich’s Ataxia. There are no treatments, there is no cure and this

Read More »
Police and protesters' embrace during George Floyd demonstrations

The Legacy of George Floyd

I personally condemn all forms of racism, bigotry, hatred, discrimination, and violence—sins against God and humanity. Like so many other Americans, I am sickened by the brutal and pointless murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and other victims of racist violence. At an African American church, literally around the corner from my home,

Read More »
Blog Hero: Tennessee, The Volunteer State

Tennessee, The Volunteer State

We are 48 hours in from the devastating tornado that tore through Nashville and roared down I40 to Cookeville, taking more than 20 lives with a long list of people still missing. And yet, Middle Tennessee has not disappointed. Although “The Volunteer State” is a reference to our involvement in the War of 1812, today

Read More »
Blog Hero: Addiction in Franklin, Tennessee

Addiction in Franklin, Tennessee

I’m crying tonight as I write this. A night out for pizza has become another lesson in the hideous tragedy of addiction. I live in a beautiful small town, Franklin, Tennessee, that I’ve often described as a real-life Hallmark movie. And yet, our children are dying. I’m tired of it. The stories, the babies left

Read More »
Blog Hero: Amanda Cecconi

Amanda Cecconi invited to join Nashville Business Journal Leadership Trust NBJ LEADERSHIP TRUST IS AN INVITATION-ONLY COMMUNITY FOR TOP BUSINESS DECISION MAKERS IN MIDDLE TENNESSEE

Franklin, TN (February 5, 2020) — Amanda Cecconi, Founder and Managing Partner of Punching Nun Group, has been invited to join Nashville Business Journal Leadership Trust, an exclusive community for influential business leaders, executives and entrepreneurs in Middle Tennessee. Amanda was chosen for membership by the Nashville Business Journal Leadership Trust Selection Committee due to her

Read More »
Blog Hero: Living a Brand

Living A Brand

Tonight, I sat at a favorite bar in a brand new boutique hotel in downtown Franklin, Tennessee, named after the same river that meanders east, west, north and south throughout Williamson County—the Harpeth. After a few choice cocktails, I had to make a quick exist to the lady’s room. As I peered in the mirror,

Read More »
New Year's 2020

New Year’s 2020

After creating so much content for clients, it can be challenging to stop the presses for a moment to develop our content (the cobbler’s children have no shoes, etc.). But as 2019 comes to an end and a new decade is upon us, it feels right to take a moment and review things at the

Read More »
Central American Beauty

Central American Beauty

My daughter fell in love with the Nicaraguan people after nearly a year teaching at orphanages in the capital city and in the rural mountain areas of this Central American country. These orphanages were filled with children the government had taken from parents in this desperately poor nation—you can only imagine the abuse and neglect

Read More »
Mother and Son: Amanda and Liam

Gratitude and Letting Go

Tonight, I was able to stop time. I had to take my son back to college. It was dark and warm, with an early September breeze hinting at fall. As we drove through the night with the top down, he asked if he could play some new songs over the car speakers. He was chatty

Read More »
Blog Hero: King with Sword: Social Media, a Double-Edged Sword

Social Media and The Business of Healthcare. A Double-Edged Sword.

Perhaps. Social media as a channel has been around for 40+ years. Consumer brands embraced social first, as a way to communicate with consumers and expand reach. When advertising on social media began, those same brands started pouring millions of dollars into filling newsfeeds with ads. The business of healthcare was and is a little

Read More »
Blog Hero: 911 and the United 93 heroes

Uniquely American: 911 and the Heroes of United Flight 93

“Are you guys ready? Ok, let’s roll!” Todd Beamer from Flint, MI Tom Burnett from Bloomington, MN Mark Bingham from Los Gatos, CA Jeremy Glick from Saddle River, NJ They led the revolt on United 93, saving countless lives. Even facing their own deaths, they demanded to be in control of their own destiny. They

Read More »
Blog Hero: Fake News and the Death of Journalism

The Death of Journalism

Dearly Departed, We are gathered here today to say farewell to journalism—journalism degrees, journalism as a career, any respect for the news in general. Dead, dead, dead. I’m just a month shy of 54. When I was in college circa 1983 to 1987, Journalism was still a thing. In fact, I married a journalist (the

Read More »
Blog Hero: City of Zombies

City of Zombies

I’ve had the opportunity to visit the West Coast twice in the past few months. Typically, travel is business related but these were both pleasure trips, a rare experience for the members of the convent. Although the visits were enjoyable while we ate and laughed our way through San Francisco and Seattle, it was tough

Read More »
Blog Hero: Something Sweet: Serious Pie & Biscuit

Something Sweet In Seattle

After a week in the Pacific Northwest visiting Vancouver and Seattle (the city British Columbians say is “just like here but 2 hours south”) I can say without bias that the brands I’ve experienced are some of best work I’ve been witness to in some time. Perhaps it’s because I’ve been working in healthcare too

Read More »
Blog Hero: Zamperini (running)

Survival & Forgiveness, Life Lessons from Louis Zamperini

Louis Zamperini having reached his 97th year went to heaven on July 2, 2014, after living what can only be described as a miraculous, amazing, extraordinary life. For those who have not read the book about his life Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption (2010) by Laura Hillenbrand, I highly

Read More »
Blog Hero: It's a Wonderful Life

It Really Is a Wonderful Life …

At this time of year in the Cecconi family, one of our favorite ways to celebrate Christmas and the end of another year is to watch Frank Capra’s 1946 film It’s a Wonderful Life. Along with A Christmas Carol, Holiday Inn and White Christmas, these movies exemplify the best of the holiday season no matter

Read More »
Blog Hero: Project YOU

Project YOU

A new client joined the ranks of PNG this month and as I typically do—when I see something really interesting that I know they’ll relate to—I send them a link. A post caught my eye this morning; a presentation on SlideShare by Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha called Start-up of You. Any PPT that kicks-off

Read More »
Blog Hero: Nun Surfing: On Taking Chances

On Taking Chances

On nearly my 48th birthday I did something a little crazy—I jumped out of a plane at 14,000 feet, yep more than 2 ½ miles straight up and then—straight down at 120 miles an hour. I’d wanted to do that for 25 years but money, time, guilt over having small kids, fear, (life) got in

Read More »
Blog Hero: Next Gen Corporate Marketing

The Next Generation of Corporate Marketing

Increasingly, companies recognize their future is only as promising as their ability to turn strategy into action. Unique among strategic consulting firms, we bring a purpose-driven perspective transitioning a CEO’s vision into an action plan. The Punching Nun Group provides support to start-ups and mid-sized businesses for a fraction of the cost of hiring a

Read More »
Blog Hero: CEO's Marketing Right-Hand

The CEO’s Marketing Right Hand

Think of Us as Your Marketing Director The CEO should be the #1 marketing visionary for the company. Our job is to capture, articulate and implement that vision to support growth and expansion. The Punching Nun’s job is to translate your value proposition into an insightful, actionable and measurable strategic marketing plan that delivers results.

Read More »
Blog Hero: Clarity / Relevance

Distinctive Clarity and Relevance

Distinctive Clarity and RelevanceFor Your Company A company gains enormous advantage when it knows explicitly where it is going and how it will get there… The Punching Nun Group incorporates your financial, product and sales/marketing strategy into a comprehensive, succinct plan to support fund raising, internal communication and external presentation of your organization’s goals and

Read More »