Category: Company

Junkluggers of the Coastal Empire Announces Holiday Food Drive for Second Harvest Food Bank

Junkluggers of the Coastal Empire Announces Holiday Food Drive for Second Harvest Food Bank

(SAVANNAH, GA) The Junkluggers of the Coastal Empire, Savannah’s eco-friendly and caring alternative to traditional junk removal, is holding a food drive to benefit America’s Second Harvest of Coastal Georgia food bank.

“We chose this as The Junkluggers’ first official charity event because we are drawn to the synergy between organizations with the same purpose – helping those in the community,” said Trevor Hess, owner and president of the local franchise. “Our family has participated with and volunteers for Second Harvest, and it’s a charity we believe in and want to support.”

During November, Hess and his wife, Misty, who is also his business partner, will be asking customers to participate by donating non-perishable foods at the time of service. They hope to raise $2,400 and collect 15,000 food items.

The Junkluggers will then deliver the donations to the Second Harvest food bank on Friday, Dec. 8. The warehouse and distribution center serves more than 300 non-profit and faith-based agencies throughout 21 counties in Coastal Georgia.

“The food bank distributes more than 12 million pounds of food throughout Coastal Georgia to help relieve hunger each year,” Hess said. “Not only does this help families in need, but it also rescues truckloads of food that retail businesses might otherwise discard into the waste stream.”

It is estimated that food procured by Second Harvest represents a savings of greater than $19 million dollars in food costs for its partner agencies, which allows them to provide other services to those in need.

“Our mission is similarly aligned to the food bank’s in that we believe in donating first, recycling next and avoiding landfills as much as possible,” Hess said. “As an eco-friendly, caring alternative to traditional junk removal, our goal is to protect the community we live in by sorting everything we put on the truck for donations, recycling and disposal, with the landfill always being the last stop for any items removed.”

Junkluggers is committed to presenting monthly donations to local charities and is developing partnerships with several local causes and non-profits. For more information, please call 912-712-0227 or visit

The Junkluggers of the Coastal Empire, owned by Trevor and Misty Hess, serves as an environmentally friendly junk removal company for Chatham, Effingham, Bryan and Liberty counties in coastal Georgia, plus Jasper and Beaufort counties in South Carolina. The company offers same day and next day appointments. Specializing in both residential and commercial clean-outs, Junkluggers accepts everything from furniture to construction debris, including office equipment, heavy machinery and appliances. All luggers are background-checked and professionally trained, and the company is insured with 100 percent property damage protection. The company is committed to partnering with local charities in service to the community as well as providing public education on issues such as recycling, donating and repurposing. For more information, please call 912-712-0227 or visit

Trevor Hess
The Junkluggers of the Coastal Empire

Cynthia Wright
Carriage Trade Public Relations®
Cecilia Russo Marketing

Peacock Automotive Rebrands Collision Center

Peacock Automotive Rebrands Collision Center

(JASPER COUNTY, S.C.) Peacock Automotive has rebranded its NRAM Collision Center, just down the road from the firm’s Peacock Auto Mall, as the Peacock Collision Center.  Established in 2014, the Peacock Collision Center specializes in all types of collision repair, including frame straightening, suspension work, dent removal and glass repair. They also offer towing services.

Peacock Collision Center

Peacock Collision Center

“We recently celebrated our fifteenth anniversary and rebranded the New River Auto Mall as Peacock Auto Mall,” said Warner Peacock, president and CEO of Peacock Automotive. “The rebranding of Peacock Collision Center now associates the family name with this facility as well.”

The 36,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art collision center services an average of 250 vehicles monthly. Located at 1667 N. Okatie Highway in Ridgeland, S.C., the Peacock Collision Center employs 17 full-time employees.

The Collision Center has attained several special certifications, including Aluminum Certifications with Audi and Ford. The center is also on the Pro-First recommended program with Honda & Acura. They are certified with Infiniti, Nissan, GM and Chrysler, which includes Mopar brands, Ram, Dodge, Jeep, SRT & Fiat. The Technicians are trained on all makes and models and they are I-CAR Certified.

Peacock Collision Center accepts all major insurance carriers and has partnered with many of the major insurance companies, including USAA, Allstate, Liberty Mutual, Safeco, Progressive, Hartford and more, to assist with customers’ vehicle repair requirements.

The Peacock Collision Center is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon. For more information, visit the website at, call 800-483-0578 or email

Peacock Automotive owns and operates 20 automotive franchises in Georgia, South Carolina and Florida and employs more than 600 individuals. The company’s headquarters are located at the Peacock Auto Mall that covers 45 acres on U.S. 278, five miles east of Interstate 95 at Exit 8 in South Carolina. Thirteen brands are featured at the Auto Mall, including Audi, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Genesis, Hyundai, Jaguar, Jeep, Land Rover, Porsche, Ram, Subaru and Volkswagen. Additionally, the company owns Savannah Volkswagen, Alfa Romeo & Fiat of Savannah and Jaguar Land Rover Columbia in Columbia, S.C. Its subsidiary, Peacock-Griffey Automotive, owns Peacock Subaru and Peacock Ford in Orlando, Fla. Peacock Automotive also owns and operates the Peacock Collision Center and the New River Wellness Institute in South Carolina. For more information about Peacock Automotive, call (843) 208-1258 or visit

Jill Jauch
Advertising and Marketing Manager

Southern Motors Acura Hosts Grand Opening for New Dealership on Chatham Parkway

Southern Motors Acura Hosts Grand Opening for New Dealership on Chatham Parkway
Public Invited to Join the Celebration Through Car Giveaway

(SAVANNAH, GA) Southern Motors Acura invites the public to join them at the grand opening of their new dealership at 102 Park of Commerce Dr. on Chatham Parkway on Saturday, Nov. 18, from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

As part of the celebration, one visitor will go home with a free two-year lease on a new Southern Motors Acura ILX.

The new outlet, with a 32,000-square-foot showroom, will offer new and used car sales and customer service while Southern Motors’ current location, which has been on Broughton Street for 88 years, will continue to provide service for downtown customers.

“We are thrilled with this expansive new building and footprint, which will allow us to grow and support our community,” said Ross Kaminsky, Southern Motors co-owner general manager. “And our customers can expect the same great service they are used to from one of the oldest family run dealerships in the area.”

The new showroom was designed by Lynch Associate Architects; JTVS Builders served as the general contractor.

Founded in 1929 by Julius Kaminsky, Southern Motors is a third-generation family owned and operated business.

The Kaminsky family believes in their city and feels it is important to show support through numerous charities and investments.

As part of that effort, a percentage of every car sold at Southern Motors benefits Hospice Savannah’s Camp Aloha. Weekend Camp Aloha is for children ages 6-17 who have experienced the death of a loved one within the previous 24 months. The annual camp provides structured activities and plays to help the children realize they are not alone in their grief.

To enter the contest for a new Acura, submit a photo of your current ride to by Monday, Nov. 13, at 11:59 p.m.
Finalists will be personally invited to attend the grand opening.

For more information on the grand opening celebration, visit

Southern Motors Automotive Group was created in 1929 by Julius Kaminsky and is still thriving more than 88 years later. Their franchises now include Honda, Acura, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Ram. Southern Motors Acura is a premier retailer of new and used Acura vehicles. The dealership’s original location was 402 E. Broughton St. in Savannah, Ga., but has recently moved to a brand new dealership at 102 Park of Commerce Dr. Savannah, GA 31405. Southern Motors Acura has a strong and committed sales staff with many years of experience in satisfying customers’ needs. Their mission is to provide the highest quality sales and service, the most competitive price and a total “family” experience with the goal of earning customers for life. The business has won numerous awards, including being voted Best of Savannah for five consecutive years. For more information, call (912) 232-3333 or visit

Cynthia Wright
Carriage Trade PR
Cecilia Russo Marketing

How to Capture Trending Hashtags for Business Social Media Accounts

How to Capture Trending Hashtags for Business Social Media Accounts
By Cynthia Wright

Cynthia Wright, Junior Partner of Carriage Trade Public Relations and Cecilia Russo Marketing_5920

Leveraging the power of social media is a key component for a business trying to strengthen brand messaging.

With 313 million active users, for example, Twitter is one of the most popular and powerful social media networks worldwide. It’s a proven influencer of brand connection and purchasing decisions and can even boost offline sales.

The successful Twitter marketing strategy should focus on listening to and joining in discussions to hear what matters to your audience, rather than trying to force-feed the conversation.

One of Twitter’s recent offerings, the Twitter Poll, is a great way to connect with audiences, gain insights into your follower base and provide short, clear and engaging context around marketing campaigns and efforts. One of the best ways to take advantage of polls is by using timely events such as holidays, sports events, news stories and viral hashtags to encourage conversations and retweets.

Most people have heard of hashtags at this point but may not know this content sorting system was created by Twitter. It should not be overlooked as one of the most powerful ways to network, inform and influence.

As a general rule, a tweet with a hashtag will receive higher engagement in the form of shares and retweets, which means more people will see it. Businesses can strike gold by using a trending hashtag, which represents topics currently receiving the most traffic on Twitter.

If thousands of Twitter users are using a trending hashtag while tweeting about a popular topic and that topic might relate to your company’s brand, product or mission, it would make sense for you to join that conversation with thoughtful, related content.

While trending hashtags change continually, some of them tend to trend consistently for each day of the week, which is especially helpful for business owners. Below is a quick list for the Monday through Friday trends:

Monday: #MusicMonday, #MilitaryMonday, #ManCrushMonday or #MCM, #MondayBlues, #MondayMemories and #MarketingMonday.

Tuesday: #TravelTuesday, #TrendyTuesday, #TipTuesday, #TopicTuesday, #TransformationTuesday and #TuesdayTreat.

Wednesday: #WayBackWednesday or #WBW, #WisdomWednesday and #WellnessWednesday.

Thursday: #ThrowBackThursday or #TBT, #ThursdayThoughts and #ThankfulThursday.

Friday: #FridayFunday, #FearlessFriday, #FitnessFriday, #FollowFriday or #FF, #FlashBackFriday or #FBF, #FunnyFriday, #FeelGoodFriday and #FoodieFriday.

While hashtags can be advantageous to develop content on trending topics, tread carefully. The key to using trending hashtags effectively is taking the time to select one that aligns with the goals and purpose of the organization.

Here’s an example of how to properly use a trending hashtag. If you are raising funds for a puppy shelter, you may want to capitalize on event-related trends such as #NationalDogDay and #NationalPetDay, even if the top hashtag is #Kale. Animal enthusiasts are most likely to sympathize with your goals, so this is the audience you want to reach, even if the trend is limited to specific days of the year.

On the other hand, #Kale will reach nutritionists and foodies who might scroll past your tweet with little more than a passing wonder as to why a puppy shelter has appeared on their feed.

When used purposefully, Twitter Polls and trending hashtags can be pivotal to the visibility and success of a social media campaign. Be watchful for helpful trends as they are surfacing, and your tweets will stay at the top of your audiences’ newsfeeds. Choose the right trend and your tweets can lead conversations that involve hundreds of Twitter users every day.

Cynthia Wright is the Junior Partner of Carriage Trade Public Relations™, Inc. and Cecilia Russo Marketing, creating word-of-mouth in the community and online through reputation management strategies. For more information, contact Wright at

Commercial Construction: Workload Rising, Workforce Declining. Inspiring Young Americans to Choose a Career in Commercial Construction

Commercial Construction: Workload Rising, Workforce Declining. Inspiring Young Americans to Choose a Career in Commercial Construction
By Chris Tilton

Chris Tilton

Chris Tilton, Dewitt Tilton Group, a Commercial Construction Company

There’s been a lot of talk recently about how automation may soon replace people in the workforce in areas from transportation to financial sectors and others. Some academic counselors are even advising students not to pursue certain fields of study once thought to be sure bets for good future employment because a job may not be waiting for them when they get out of school.

One exception is the commercial construction industry.

Although it has benefited from many advancements in robotics, the commercial construction industry still needs skilled tradespeople to fill positions now and into the future. They include, among others, carpenters and concrete mixers, crew leaders and office managers with an immediate and ongoing need for qualified workers from entry level to management.

But the industry workforce is not growing as it should, so its leaders must do a better job of inspiring young people to seek careers in commercial construction.

Since the end of the 2008 recession, the workload has been steadily rising, but the workforce has failed to keep pace with qualified applicants needed for mid-level management positions and skilled labor jobs.

A recent study by the Associated General Contractors of America found that 73 percent of construction firms in the U.S. plan to expand their payrolls this year to meet project demands, but those surveyed also expressed concerns about the availability of qualified workers to fill those positions.

Europe is experiencing similar issues. According to a recent report in the United Kingdom’s Daily Telegraph, the construction industry will create nearly 200,000 new jobs over the next five years as demand for new homes fuels a boom in the sector.

So why is there such a large gap in the construction workforce? There are a number of reasons. Those who are in the profession are getting older and many mid-level professionals left during the recession to pursue other careers. Our industry must do more to retain the workers we have and lure back those who left, such as offering incentives like project completion bonuses.

But the big problem is that too few young people are pursuing construction jobs out of high school or college. That’s partly because the construction sector has an image problem and millennials tend to view the industry as old fashioned and not very dynamic. They also want security and variety in their careers and want to be challenged and valued.

So the construction industry has work to do to convince millennials of the value of working in construction. In reality, it has something for virtually everyone, from project management to 3D design and modeling, historic preservation, masonry, carpentry and more.

If we want to attract graduate-level talent from our colleges and universities, we need to change perceptions of our industry. As an example, a study by the National Association of Home Builders found that only three percent of young adults were interested in construction trades, citing the physical demands of difficult work as deterrents.

They also generally underestimated the financial benefits of a career in the construction trades. While it’s only one piece of the total employment package, competitive compensation is important. Normally, base salary is determined by the scope of the employee’s responsibilities, qualifications and years of experience. Construction workers earn an average salary of $31,910 per year. The average salary for a construction manager is $73,087 per year. Most companies offer a variety of programs that expand upon your benefits and compensation package too, and this information needs to be shared with our young workforce.

We should work closely with academic and technical colleges, as well as high schools, to provide information about the benefits of a career in commercial construction and its promising future. We should also offer more internships and apprenticeships that encourage young people to try construction and gain work experience while they learn a skill. By working with educators, we can help them define and streamline their programs to better focus on developing skill sets that are critically needed in the commercial construction industry.

Chris Tilton is the co-founder of the Dewitt Tilton Group, a Savannah area commercial construction company. For more information or to contact Tilton, call 912.777.3404 or email

Speros Continues to Expand Operations, Promotes Rik LaSpisa to Director of Sales

Speros Continues to Expand Operations, Promotes Rik LaSpisa to Director of Sales

(SAVANNAH, GA) Speros, a full-service technology company headquartered in Savannah, has expanded its operations and promoted Rik LaSpisa from Account Executive to Director of Sales.

Speros, Rik LaSpisa

Rik LaSpisa, Speros

The Buffalo, N.Y., native, who has served as Speros’ Account Executive since 2016, is a graduate of Houghton College with a B.S. in business management. He brings more than fourteen years of experience of solutions selling in integrated technical systems design and integration in southeast Georgia to the newly created position of Director of Sales.

LaSpisa’s experience includes managing complex sales for businesses, public and private schools, higher education, houses of worship and local and Federal government.

“We created the Director of Sales position to better respond to the dynamic growth our company is experiencing, along with our expanding customer base,” said Susan Speros, president and CEO of Speros. “As a strategic leader with excellent time management skills and a proven track record of successes in a driving growth and territory expansion, Rik was the perfect choice for this new role.”

LaSpisa has a record of driving growth and territory expansion and is highly experienced in account management, lead generation, sales and client acquisition.

Established in 1984, Speros provides technology solutions for businesses, offering telephone systems, IT services, surveillance systems, web design and branding solutions and cloud computing. Speros team members continually stay updated on leading-edge, certified technologies to maximize solutions and ensure businesses succeed in this fast-paced, technology-driven world. For more information, visit, call 912-354-8900 or email

Rik LaSpisa
Director of Sales

Cecilia Russo Turner
Cecilia Russo Marketing

Marjorie Young
Carriage Trade Public Relations, Inc.