I’m passionate about marketing, media, PR and 18th century journalism history. I’ve worked in the agency, agency, agency, non-profit and corporate worlds of marketing (in that order), and have had the privilege to consult more than 200 companies and individuals to date. Click here to see some of my experience.
I have a unique name. Andrlik. It’s pronounced And-er-leck. It’s Czech and easily misspelled. To simplify, I shortened the blog title to Todd And.
My expertise in PR and marketing incubated inside the heated walls of giant PR agencies. I spent several years working for global PR firms, including a four-year term at Weber Shandwick.
During my agency tenure, I grew to supervise many national accounts for clients in the financial and professional services arena — primarily commercial real estate companies and law firms. The creative campaigns and phenomenal results my teams generated on behalf of our clients were well-recognized by our PR peers as we took home numerous awards, including the coveted PRWeek Award for Campaign of the Year.
In 2004, I moved from an office overlooking Michigan Avenue to an office overlooking the Fox River in Chicago’s western suburbs where I directed tourism and economic development-related marketing efforts for seven municipalities, including Illinois’ second largest city. Honing the skills I learned from the agency world, I conceptualized and executed several new strategies and tactics that eventually led to record-breaking results and awards. Most of our Illinois tourism marketing awards were won in head-to-head competition with much larger Chicago attractions like Navy Pier, Millennium Park and the Chicago museums of art, science, history, culture and industry.
Today, I am vice president of marketing and PR for one of the nation’s largest construction, design-build and commercial real estate development firms. Our award-winning marketing department is creative, talented and extremely ambitious. Pulled from my original agency experience, we’ve built a culture of exceptional client service where the marketing department acts as an agency treating all colleagues as clients. We employ can-do, make-it-happen attitudes. We take great pride in our work and the fact that we don’t outsource any piece of our integrated marketing program, which consists of web, video, PR, social media, advertising, direct mail, collateral, events and more. We constantly strive to stay cutting-edge and apply new media tactics where appropriate.
Our innovative corporate news room was one of the first to be developed with a WordPress blog engine, which delivered built-in archiving, search functionality, SEO, RSS, easy video embeds, tags, reader stats and content management. Our efforts captured national attention and was cited in two books, Digital Strategies for Powerful Corporate Communications (2009) and The Practice of Public Relations (2010), a university text book.
As a result of our aggressive PR and online marketing efforts, we generated substantial industry buzz and realized a whopping 17,400 percent increase in our search engine presence (over 36 months).
From time to time, I’ve freelanced to provide communication solutions to companies and individuals with tight budgets — often extremely tight budgets. I have guest lectured on numerous marketing and PR topics for organizations and universities, including Ragan Communications, MarketingProfs, Public Relations Society of America, Social Media Club, Loyola University, Roosevelt University and Illinois State University.
Collectively, I’ve counseled over 200 companies and individuals, including many Fortune 500 firms, C-suite executives, lawyers and politicians. I’ve written thousands of press releases and articles, and secured thousands of reporter interviews and media placements – both online and in major mainstream outlets like CNN, MSNBC, WSJ, NYT, FT, etc. I’ve managed crises, coached spokespeople, built brands and generated news.
Personally, my professional life has been very rewarding in that I help companies and individuals grow and connect.
Social Media Pioneer
As an early adopter, I was fully emerged in podcasts and blogs by 2004. On July 16, 2006, I began authoring my own blog, toddand.com. Almost daily, I was publishing relevant marketing-related content and contributing to the rapidly growing blogosphere.
In 2007, long before Ashton Kutcher and CNN were on Twitter, I invented the Power 150, a global ranking of the top marketing and media blogs. The list went viral and quickly became the industry benchmark, serving as the most comprehensive and definitive barometer of blogs. To ensure its growth and resourcefulness, I partnered with Advertising Age, the world’s leading marketing and media magazine. AdAge now manages the Power 150 and I continue to provide the only subjective metric in its scoring algorithm. Since its launch, the Power 150 has been widely publicized in books, bios, blogs and mainstream media, including Fast Company and the Wall Street Journal.
By 2008, toddand.com was at its peak (thanks in no small part to the success of the Power 150). Toddand.com had earned well-respected positions near the top of every major ranking of blogs, including my own. According to one website statistics provider, at one snapshot in time, toddand.com was averaging about 100,000 visitors per month (1.2 million per year). When Technorati was indexing 100 million blogs, toddand.com ranked in the top 4,000. The Chicago Tribune labeled me one of Chicago’s Best Bloggers and the Huffington Post invited me to be one of the inaugural bloggers for its new Chicago edition.
In 2009, at about the same time my two-year-old daughter began walking running, I turned down the dial on my toddand.com publishing. I spent a good chunk of my free time in 2009 helping others understand and be successful with social media. Three of my favorite projects in 2009 included 4Tricia.com, The Teaching Palette and Teach History. I also put a lot of time and effort into my other blog called Rag Linen.
Unfortunately, another 2009 project was picking up the pieces from the Great Back-up Crash of 2009. I quickly became the posterchild for understanding the importance of double-checking your database back-ups. After three months grieving the loss of nearly 800 blog posts, a few loyal toddand.com readers provided a solution and helped me retrieve three years of archives (sans photos and in major need of formatting). Right now, toddand.com is about 80 percent restored.
Honors and Awards
In addition to helping my clients and companies win dozens of prestigious honors and recognitions in their own industries, my body of work has been recognized with these honors and awards:
* Best White Papers of 2009 – Author of Crafting White Paper 2.0
* Society of American Business Editors & Writers – Best in Business (Power 150)
* Hermes Creative Award – Platinum Winner (brochure category)
* Ad Age Power 150 – The World’s Top Marketing & Media Blogs
* Huffington Post – Inaugural blogger at launch of new Chicago edition
* Chicago Tribune – Chicago’s Best Blogs
* New Employee of the Year (internal company award)
* Building Design & Construction Best of the Best – Best of the Web
* Illinois Governor’s Award – Best Website
* Illinois Governor’s Award – Best Radio Ad
* Illinois Governor’s Award – Best Visitor Guide
* Illinois Governor’s Award – Best Group Tour Guide
* Illinois Governor’s Award – Best Print Ad
* Illinois Governor’s Award – Best PR Campaign
* Illinois Governor’s Award – Best e-Marketing
* PRWeek Award – Campaign of the Year
* PRWeek Award – Best Business-to-Business Campaign
* PRWeek Award – Best Use of Research
* PRWeek Award – Student of the Year (Finalist/First Runner-Up)
* Gold Sabre Award – Business-to-Business Marketing
* Legal Marketing Association Honor Award – Public Relations
* President’s MVP Award (internal agency award)
Books That Mention Me or My Work
* The Practice of Public Relations (2010) – corporate social media work cited in 11th edition
* The Handbook of Technology Management (2010) – blog cited as recommended reading
* Les Relations Publiques (2010) – cites my analysis of PR accreditations
* Journalism Next: A Practical Guide to Digital Reporting and Publishing (2009) – quoted
* Digital Strategies for Powerful Corporate Communications (2009) – corporate social media work cited
* Age of Conversation 2 (2008) – one of 237 coauthors
* Meatball Sundae (2008) – Power 150 acknowledged by author Seth Godin
* Age of Conversation (2007) – one of 103 coauthors
* The New Rules of Marketing and PR (2007) – blog acknowledged by author David M. Scott
* Now is Gone (2007) – referenced by author Geoff Livingston
* Thirty Seconds to Air (2007) – thanked by author Bob Arya
* Guest Consultant: The Paul Revere House (Boston)
* Guest Speaker: Society of Industrial and Office Realtors (SIOR), Social Media
* Guest Speaker: REJournals, Social Media
* Panel Moderator: Social Media Club, Social Media Meets Chicago Media
* Guest Speaker: Ragan Communications, Corporate Social Media
* Co-Host and Panelist: Advertising Age, Power150 Roundtable
* Guest Speaker: Ragan Communications, Social Media and PR
* Panelist: MarketingProfs, B2B New Media and Marketing
* Guest Speaker: Roosevelt University, Social Media Marketing
* Panelist: Illinois State University, Careers in Public Relations
* Panelist: Loyola University, Careers in Public Relations
* Chair, Social Media Advisory Board – Turning Pointe Autism Foundation
* Member, Advisory Board – The Printing Office of Edes & Gill
Home and Hobbies
I’m married to a beautiful elementary school art teacher and proud to say I taught her everything she knows about blogging. She co-authors an internationally-recognized education blog called The Teaching Palette. Her blog, which I designed and consulted on, has been featured in three national magazines and named one of the Top 20 Teacher Blogs. We have a 4-year-old toddler and an 8-pound Silky Terrier named Wrigley. I enjoy European travel (15 countries visited to date), 18th century American history and improvisational comedy. In 2004, I retired from my own improv troupe after 12 years of performing. I get along very well with technology and emerging media. I listen to podcasts. I read blogs. I know what RSS means. I’m always listening to iTunes or tinkering with my apps. I’m both a Mac and a PC guy. I cheer for four sports teams – the Chicago Bears, Bulls, Cubs and Hawks. I’m a news junkie and collect historical newspapers dating as far back as the 17th century.
During the winter of 2006/2007, I created the Power 150, a global ranking of marketing blogs. On July 23, 2007, the Power 150 joined forces with Advertising Age, the world’s leading marketing and media publication. Ad Age announced and re-launched the ranking on August 6, 2007. The Power 150 has influenced several similar lists across other industries and has been widely publicized in books, blogs and mainstream media, including Fast Company and the Wall Street Journal.
Roosevelt University (MBA)
Salzburg College (International Business and PR)
Illinois State University (Public Relations)
Blogs and Websites I’ve Designed
Videos I’ve Produced
* Introduction to University Archives
* Authenticating Obama Signatures
* Collecting Space Memorabilia
* Authentication Tools
* Terminology Used in Describing Autographs and Documents
* Authenticating Lincoln Signatures
* Historic Lincoln Relics at University Archives
* Sports Memorabilia at University Archives
* Ernest Hemingway’s Typewriter
* Tools and Technology for Authenticating Historic Documents
* Tragic Yet Historic Relics of Lee Harvey Oswald
* Authenticating George Washington Signatures
* Historic JFK Relics
* The Mitchell Archives – Meet Mark
* The Mitchell Archives – Historic Newspapers
* The Mitchell Archives – Behind the Scenes
* Walking Boston – Walking Tours of Historic Boston