Branding expert and author Lori Martinek knows what it’s like to light the world on fire. As the owner of a successful marketing and PR firm, a consultant and coach to CEOs and a mentor and advisor to aspiring entrepreneurs, she has built a career on being the bright, shining bulb that motivates others to great success.
Lori’s extensive experience on all sides of the marketing equation (agency, client and media) has made her a sought-after branding strategist in the economic development, community marketing and corporate identity arenas. As the owner of ED/c Partners, an award-winning branding, marketing and public relations firm serving a diverse client base, Martinek works side by side with CEOs, officials and civic leaders to get them and their organizations noticed — online and off (www.edcgrow.com).
Martinek has counseled municipalities, economic development agencies and chambers of commerce throughout the Midwest and in Arizona. She is an accomplished speaker and a consultant and coach to CEOs, community leaders, elected officials and political candidates. Martinek has managed the marketing programs of Small Business Development Center (SBDC) networks in Arizona and Illinois, served as an SBA/SBDC marketing and business development counselor and is a former president, board member and consultant to chambers of commerce, foundations and other non-profit and civic ventures.
Her economic development branding and marketing resume includes projects for public and private partnerships, agencies and initiatives in the start-up and growth phases at all levels of government, and for community college systems in the Midwest and Arizona.
Martinek holds a Master’s degree from Northwestern University’s prestigious Medill School of Journalism. She began her career at Foote, Cone & Belding Worldwide in Chicago, where she developed high-impact advertising and media strategies for clients including S. C. Johnson, Coors, Killians Red, First National Bank of Chicago and Payless Shoes.
As a National Marketing Manager for Wickes Lumber Company, Martinek went on to develop innovative consumer and contractor programs for the 223-store retailer, including the production of an award-winning video series for Owens Corning, Black & Decker and Kohler.
Her publishing credits include articles on business management, branding and marketing for national publications and 26 years of newspaper bylines in publications including the Chicago Tribune, the Wisconsin Capital Times/State Journal, the Pioneer Press and the Northwest Herald. Martinek’s first book, Be The Bulb!, was published in 2009 by Herlife Publishing, another entrepreneurial venture.
Martinek speaks to audiences across the country on topics including branding and social media marketing, economic development, regionalism and entrepreneurship. Her energetic style is well-received by conference, association, government and academic audiences. She is also the founder of MindingHerBiz, a women’s mastermind group and pro bono project that helps female entrepreneurs confront the challenges of startup and growth.