How 2020 prepared and excited us for 2021

2020 threw a lot of curve balls at everyone and when businesses across the country were forced to make rapid decisions about their company culture, events, and branding, many organizations believed they would never be the same again. However, what began as a head first fall down a seemingly endless staircase has since created some of the most interesting, unique, and innovative opportunities for businesses to embrace the future and rebuild from the ground up. 

One of the greatest blows delivered to businesses around the world was the loss of ability to host events. Everything from internal morale boosters and company bonding to major conventions, trade shows, and panel events quickly became a thing of the past with no return in sight. It was through this that we saw the rise of the virtual event space. Companies working around the clock began to develop these virtual spaces, and before we knew it we were seeing college activities fairs in video game worlds, entire conventions held in online hubs modeled after actual venues, and even VR to fully immerse ourselves in 3D lecture spaces and speaker panels. Technology that once seemed to be the thing pushing people apart has now become the greatest tool in bringing us together. 

The most exciting part of this technology however, is the implications it has for the future. The technology does not have to be limited to the socially distant era, and with a vaccine rapidly approaching distribution it’s exciting to see what the return to “business as usual” (ha ha) means for these platforms. After all, if you have the ability to to adapt to both an in person and virtual environment, you can be prepared for any situation the modern world can throw at you.

Fresh has been looking at this picture for a while. By generating ideas for platforms that can act as effective activations in both virtual and in person environments, we are able to embrace all of the tools at our disposal to ensure our clients are ready for anything 2021 can throw at us. It’s so incredibly important right now to not think in eithers and ors, but ands. Virtual events made have supplemented the fall of in person events during the COVID-19 pandemic, but that doesn’t mean in person events are gone for good and with the return of in person events on the not so distant horizon, virtual space is not on track to disappear anytime soon. So why are people so focused on one or the other?

Fresh is here to help make you into the swiss army knife of branding and activation that we know you can become. When you’re with us it’s not a question of which space is best for us to tackle now, it’s how can we help you be prepared to tackle any space the past, present, and future can throw at you. 2020 may have been the year of the virtual event, but 2021 is shaping up to be the year where the Fresh-est solutions are the ones that rule.

Keep Your Skills Fresh This Holiday Season

Looking for a good gift to appease the creative spirit in yourself and your loved ones? As we talked about last week, we don’t think there’s any better way to combat the wintertime blues than with creative expression, and what better way to encourage that than the gift of learning a new skill! As a result, we thought we would take the time to share with you guys some of the great deals that are currently going on that may be your next hit gift!

MasterClass is an amazing online course system where you can learn important skills straight from the mouths of…well masters. Ever wanted to learn to play guitar from Santana and Tom Morello? What about learning photography from Annie Leibovitz or sharpening your writing skills with Dan Brown or James Patterson? The list goes on with skills to be learned from some of the greats in each of these areas. Are you already so intrigued that this sounds too good to give as a gift and you want to just get one for yourself? Well lucky you! Because right now Masterclass is doing a give-one-get-one deal where you can get 2 memberships for the price of one! Be sure to act fast as this deal won’t stay forever and can be a great way to motivate yourself and a friend or family member to try something new!

The next item on our list is Udemy courses! Professionally taught courses in a variety of subjects at one time prices can be one of the best gifts you can give your favorite education seeking friends or yourself. There are courses here in everything from data science, to marketing, and personal as well as professional development. Now you can learn your next big marketable skill on your own time, at huge discounts. Some of their most popular courses and bootcamps to get you from getting started to technical wizard are on sale for as little as $12! Compared to their usual ~$100 pricetag, it’s never been cheaper or easier to start learning a new skill from experts!

There are so many great online courses available for any new skill you may want to learn, and what better time than the WFHolidays! This holiday season, keep yourselves and your friends happy, inspired, and creative. The Fresh team is no stranger to these courses and fun little gifts like these will keep you and your friends’ skills sharp and your minds stimulated all winter long. What’s a new skill you want to learn?

Keep Your Spirits Up This Winter

What an absolute whirlwind of a year this has been. We’ve all been through a lot, and even though the end of 2020 is in sight, it’s important to take the time for ourselves to make sure that we all can end the year stronger than ever before. Last week, we talked about the things we can do for our friends and coworkers in the era of the Zoom office, but just as importantly as taking care of each other is taking care of ourselves.

Seasonal affective disorder is a very real thing and as it’s getting darker earlier, we are really swinging into it at its peak. This lack of sunlight, time outdoors, and general isolation are hard enough in a regular year, add in restrictions resulting from COVID-19 that have been in place for the last few months, and what you have is a cocktail of negative influences on your mood and feelings for the remainder of the winter season.

So how can we go up against this? The first step is acknowledging it. Once you recognize it, take the time for yourself! Get outside and take a nice walk in the middle of the work day to get every drop out of the last of that fall weather, pretty soon I’m going to be bundled up like the Stay Puft marshmallow man just to grab coffee at the little shop a block away from me. Work in the rooms that you can be most productive in, but also take the time to work in the spaces with the most natural light. With the end of the work day now coinciding pretty much with total darkness, you’ve gotta take in the most sunlight you can on the clock because you can’t get much after hours. 

Creativity is also a great way to keep the mood up, and with so many online tutorials for drawing, painting, and other creative arts, there has never been a better time to flex that creative muscle. The Fresh team loves not just doing creative work for clients, but creative and fun projects in our free time! Everything from drawing and painting to writing music and building guitars, creativity drives and motivates us all to do the work we love doing both on and off the clock. 

We all find we’re at our best and most productive when we can put the time and work into something we’re passionate about. So find your creative outlet, and take advantage of all this time! Keep busy with a new project or an old hobby, and you won’t even have the time to think about the fact that the sun sets at 4pm!

What are your favorite ways to get creative in the winter time?

Giving Thanks for the Dream Team

With Thanksgiving tomorrow, it’s an important time to reflect on the things we are truly grateful for. While it may not be the forefront of your thoughts on a day like today, don’t forget to thank your team. 

In the COVID times, it’s so incredibly hard to maintain and build relationships with your coworkers new and old. Everything from water cooler conversations to “hey I’m gonna go grab lunch, wanna come?” has vanished into thin air. Instead now we find ourselves in Zoom calls with the team for a few hours a day, and while friendly conversation and small talk are not impossible in this setting, it’s increasingly evident that we just don’t spend the time with our teams that we used to.

Virtual coffee dates and happy hours seem to have become the new norm, but how long can you go just seeing someone inside a tiny box on your screen before you forget everything prior that has built your relationship as coworkers, teammates, and hopefully in a lot of cases friends? Bring that down another level even into Slack, no warm smile or any signs of friendship, just an even tinier profile picture and nothing more. 

Take the time and reflect a little bit, next time you look at the face on the screen, think about the hard work you’ve been able to put in together, remember the common goals that are the reasons you’re teammates in the first place. Hold on to that positivity, reflect that back next time you see them, and be sure to try and find this positivity in every small victory. 

Not being able to see each other face to face doesn’t mean we can’t still be thankful for the hardworking people we work with every day. This COVID Thanksgiving, we’re thankful for our friends, family, and health, but don’t forget to take the time to show your teammates you appreciate their hard work. Tag yours below to show em’ you care!

Charity Spotlight 11/18

In the spirit of World Kindness Day being last week, and with the holidays rapidly approaching, we felt it would be fitting to talk about some amazing local organizations doing incredible work every day. There’s no better way to celebrate the season of giving than appreciating those who are always giving back.

The first of these organizations is the Plummer Youth Promise, a Salem based organization that believes that every young person deserves a family unconditionally committed to nurturing, protecting and guiding them; someone who will be with them forever. They are in the middle of their Holiday sponsor drive so be sure to check them out at and share to help give the priceless gift of family to youth who need it this holiday season.

The next organization is Entrepreneurship for All (EforAll), a Massachusetts based group founded in 2010 that prides themselves on accelerating economic and social impact in communities nationwide through inclusive entrepreneurship. By putting the entrepreneur first and placing emphasis on inclusivity, EforAll is empowering people in communities all over Massachusetts. Check them out at to learn more about their mission!

Any organizations that you’re passionate about? What are your favorite local non-profits? Shout them out here and be sure to check back on our social media for more organization spotlights soon! 

Team Member Spotlight 1: Jack

When I pitched team member spotlights as part of a new initiative Fresh could take across all social platforms, I didn’t think Erin and Jesse would suggest I do the first one on myself…but I don’t really get tired of talking about myself so I guess I won’t object. 

So hi everyone, I’m Jack. I’m 23, born and raised just outside of Boston and hopefully going to graduate from Northeastern at some point, though I’m currently enjoying my final year to its fullest in Zoom form. I’m a business major with a concentration in marketing, which has provided me with some pretty fantastic opportunities during my time in Northeastern’s co-op program, and also has actively given me nightmares about giving elevator pitches. 

I have a minor in music and have been playing guitar for the last 8 or so years, however if there’s one thing that I love more than playing music, it’s seeing live music. Across 100+ shows in multiple different states and countries, I’ve had the pleasure of seeing some of the greats. However, there is one band that I’ve seen more times than any other, and that I love so aggressively that if you’ve ever talked to me before, chances are you already know EXACTLY where I’m going.

Two words: Grateful. Dead. I’ve seen Dead and Company 9 times since my friends first convinced me to roadtrip to Saratoga in 2016, there is truly nothing like a Dead show. From the second you step foot in the venue parking lot, the energy just feels different. Rows of vendors selling homemade tie dyes and grilled cheese, sitting on the roofs of their cars with massive speakers blaring their favorite live Dead jams from their massive 30 year, ~2,300+ live show career, and swapping stories about doing the exact same thing 40 or so years earlier. It’s honestly pretty awesome. I had never felt so immediately welcome in a community before, it’s like a switch flips and suddenly everyone in that massive arena is a friend. 

So many happy memories of mine are associated with the Dead. Whether it was being homesick my first semester abroad and just blasting the sadness away with American Beauty, or taking a trip to see the famous Haight-Ashbury home that once housed the band as a sort of Deadhead pilgrimage, I could gush for hours. The positivity and joy that this band brings me at any time is like no other, and I’m so Grateful (heh) to have found that. 

As the current president of a fraternity, there are few more important lessons I’ve learned in my time at Northeastern than the value in finding your people. I went to my first Dead show expecting a concert, and instead I got a community and lifestyle like nothing I’d seen before. The best part is that you can take those same ideas and apply them to anything in life! All it takes is one similar interest or goal, and you can find yourself surrounded by awesome, like-minded people

Joining the Fresh team has been no exception. From discussions of 80’s thrash metal to true crime podcasts and everything in between, I can tell there’s quite a bit of common ground.  I’m really excited to be working with the team to help create social content and I hope you guys will enjoy reading the new content as much as I do writing it!