Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Preparing Your Heart for Christmas


December can be a very busy and stressful time.

The folks at St. John’s Episcopal Church in West Hartford are helping people experience peace and prepare their hearts for Christmas.

Recently, they held an Advent Procession of Lessons and Carols, featuring the adult and youth choirs at the church.

The choirs sang some Advent carols and presented music that helped the listener learn and understand more about the Advent season and also prepare his or her heart for Christmas.

Advent is a time of waiting in joyful hope for the birth of Jesus Christ, and this service was offered as part of our spiritual preparation for the wonder of that miracle.

At the service, the sequence of music, scripture, and hymns focused on longing for God’s kingdom to be established on Earth – and the assertion that in Christ, that day is dawning.

The service began in a darkened church, with the choir singing from afar, and then moved from darkness to light. The increased brightness symbolized the progressive revelation of Jesus Christ to the world.

If you were unable to make it to the service, please take the time to review the program and listen to the podcast as you prepare for Christmas.

As we continue to prepare for Christmas, please join St. John's Episcopal Church on Christmas Eve, when services will be held at 4 p.m. and 11 p.m.

At 4 p.m., a festal celebration of Holy Eucharist will include a sermon suitable for younger children and music by our Youth Choir. A musical prelude will begin at 3:45 p.m.

At 11 p.m., the music of the Christmas angels will be played and sung by our adult choir and instrumentalists and the people of God who gather in this place. A choral prelude will begin at 10:30 p.m.

For more information, news, notes, and events, please visit www.sjparish.net.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Sacred Cello and Piano Concert to be Held in November

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If you are looking for an evening of beautiful classical music, you won’t want to miss the Sacred Cello & Piano Concert at St. John’s Episcopal Church.

On Nov. 16 at 4 p.m., internationally renowned artists Tanya Anisimova and Pi-Hsun Shih, who perform together often, will play together as Duo Bona Fide at this special event.

Admission is free, but there is a suggested donation of $20.

Anisimova is an internationally renowned musician that defies categorization. This superb cellist, composer, improviser, singer, and arranger, is as much at ease performing her own cello concerto with a symphony orchestra as she is improvising in concert.

Shih is described as a pianist of “searing precision” by the Hartford Courant. Shih has performed throughout North America, South America, and Asia with ensembles such as Empire Brass and the Emerson String Quartet.
 
Sacred Music at the Red Door will present this concert as the first in a series of five concerts for the 2014-15 season. 


For more information about this concert and other upcoming concerts, please visit www.reddoormusic.org.


Friday, September 26, 2014

Show Your Customers What You're All About

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By Erin Quinlan

Many businesses have slogans or taglines that go something like, “Honesty, ethics, value, integrity.”

We’ve all seen them, right?

But would you walk up to someone you’ve never met before and tell them how sexy, charismatic, or charming you are? Of course not.

So why would you do that with your business? Why would you tell people what you want them to believe about your business and not train them in what your business actually operates with in terms of those ethics guidelines?

One recent example of a poor tagline is Berkshire Bank’s slogan of “America’s Most Exciting Bank.” There’s nothing exciting about a bank until you look at your account and realize that you overdrafted and they never set up the account right to protect you.

This is not America’s most exciting bank because America can’t have an exciting bank. Show me what you really are and how you operate!

Showing your customers what you’re all about is a far more effective method than just trying to convince them of something using a tagline or slogan.

Show-don’t-tell marketing forces you to be truly honest about the story you’re sharing. You can say whatever you want about your business, but showing it means you have to actually run your business with integrity. You have to stand behind the story you’re sharing.

Ethical business practices include assuring that the highest legal and moral standards are observed in your relationships with the people in your business community. A reputation for ethical decisions builds trust in your business among business associates and suppliers. Strong supplier relationships are critical to a successful business. Consider the problems you might have if you could not supply what the customer needs... at the time that they need it.

So, whatever kind of business you run, fix your motto, fix your tagline. Allow people to experience what your motto is through the values that you employ on a regular basis, not through what you tell them they should believe.

Need some help?


Give The Silent Partner Marketing a call at 866-432-6456 or e-mail Kyle Reyes at kyle@thesilentpartnermarketing.com and we can help you out.


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Erin Quinlan is the Content Marketing Manager of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology. You can find The Silent Partner Marketing on Google+Facebook, and Twitter

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Making Your Video Go Viral

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By Erin Quinlan


It seems like every day, one of the business owners we work with, or one of the prospects who wants to work with us, says they want a viral video.

Sure, who doesn’t? But just because you want a video to go viral won’t mean that it will.

You need some of the key components to the creation of something that people actually care about.

These components include, is it easy to do, is it fun, and do people care? Is it engaging, relevant, or unique? If the answer is no, you probably won’t get your video to go viral.

To help get your video to go viral, you want to tell a good story. No matter what you’re selling, the story should matter more than the product. If you have a compelling narrative, it doesn’t really matter if you’ve mentioned what you’re selling. People don’t want to share a video that explains the merit of one brand over another.

You will need to kick your video off with a bang. You need to capture the viewer’s attention within the first five seconds. This can be achieved through music, dramatic intros, or action sequences.

Once you have their attention, you have to keep them interested. Make them laugh, smile, or cry – or they will become bored and won’t be engaged.

You can also surprise – but not shock – your audience. In order to go viral a video needs to be shared, and people aren’t going to share something that is too explicit or graphic.

Once you have your video done, make sure that it is place in front of key influencers. To go viral, it needs to be put in front of the right people.

The first 24 hours of a video’s life are critical. If nobody interacts with it in this timeframe, it’s going to struggle. YouTube monitors how many times a video has been interacted with – likes, comments, shares, completed views etc., during the first 24 hours. If it’s enough according to the algorithm, the video is promoted to its country/language YouTube chart, which dramatically increases the video’s chance of going viral. 

Views are important, but for a video to go viral, it is essential that people share it. If it is shared on social media, more people will become aware of your video than if it just has many views on YouTube. Sharing is the true way of making your video go viral.

Need some help with your videos?


Give The Silent Partner Marketing a call at 866-432-6456 or e-mail Kyle Reyes at kyle@thesilentpartnermarketing.com and we can help you out.



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Erin Quinlan is the Content Marketing Manager of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology. You can find The Silent Partner Marketing on Google+Facebook, and Twitter

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Where Are Your Past Customers In The Buying Process?

By Kyle Reyes

What kind of business person are you?  Are you one who relies on the crumbs that fall from the dinners of other businesses...or are you the kind of agent that has a powerful customer relationship management system that allows you to stay in touch with past customers and know where they are in their lives?
There are people in this industry that make deals and move on.  Then there are others that continue to add value to past customers...knowing that they are also FUTURE customers.  The successful ones are not afraid to ask for referrals and are not afraid to ask for recommendations.  You work your butt off to help people.  THIS is one of the greatest opportunities you're all missing on social sites like Facebook and YouTube, to name a few.
I was inspired to ask this question to all of you as I think about where my wife and I are in our lives right now.  She and our four-legged kids (see one of them below) are just hours away from welcoming our first TWO-legged kid into our lives.  And in a very short period of time, we're seeing our life-circumstances change.
Although we bought our house (as cursed as it may be) just last October, we're already planning on the next home that we'll have for our growing family.
Those whom we worked with on purchasing our last home may or may not known we have a kid on the way.  They may or may not know that we hate this house and were completely duped in the buying process by the sellers.  They may or may not know...because they may or may not be asking.
The moral of the story is this.  It doesn't matter whether you work in real estate, the automotive world or just run a small business.  Be where your customers are - not just in your marketing, but in your everyday interactions in life.  Because a sale today could be two tomorrow.  Your greatest marketing strategy is only as strong as your ability to maintain relationships with the people who you've crossed paths with before.
PS- If you DO work in real estate...you should hit us up to hear the scoop about our powerful new real marketing division before we officially announce it.  You can't afford to miss this.
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Kyle Reyes is the President and Creative Director of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology.  You can find him on Google+Facebook and Twitter.  He's the Chuck Norris of marketing.  It's outrageous - we know.  That's kind of the point.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Does Your Advertising Method Make Sense?

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By Erin Quinlan

Sometimes, we see things that make us stop and just shake our heads.

Take for example the Big Y 18-wheeler at the Big E. Who thinks about going to the grocery store to get food after stuffing themselves at the Big E?

Not us. We at The Silent Partner Marketing made sure to eat everything in sight at the fair.

This giant advertisement probably cost at least $10,000. That’s a lot of dough to spend on something that won’t matter to people – because they’ve already eaten enough dough in the last few hours to last at least a couple weeks.

The cost and the lack of return on investment make this a poor marketing technique.

So here’s your homework. Stop and think about your traditional and digital marketing initiatives. Think about where you’re spending your money and think to yourself, “Does it make sense?”

Creating a marketing strategy without a clear understanding of your audience is a bit like setting out on a boat without navigational tools. You’re doing something, but you’re not working toward a specific goal.

You need to figure out who your audience is. Demographic profiles are somewhat limited in their potential to uncover motivations and buying patterns, but they’re a good place to start.

Once you figure out who your audience is, figure out what their most pressing issue, problem, or desire is. Whatever the issue, it’s what you’ll use to enter the discussion and make an impact in their lives.

How does your product or service solve their problem? Don’t tell them what your do or the product does, but tell them what it does for them.

You also need to figure out where your audience gets their information. Choosing the correct channels for your message is absolutely critical. See the Big Y 18-wheeler for an example of an incorrect channel.

Consumers these days are a skeptical breed who are bombarded with advertisements everywhere they go. Oftentimes, the ads are filled with outright lights. Always act with integrity, back up your claims with proof, and understand the dynamics of your market well enough to be able to identify the standard bad claims.

Trust is huge. Who do your customers trust? Hopefully, the answer to that question is you. Gaining the trust of your audience is huge. Be open, honest, and always leave the lines of communication open.

Need some help with all of this?

Give The Silent Partner Marketing a call at 866-432-6456 or e-mail Kyle Reyes at kyle@thesilentpartnermarketing.com and we can help you out.



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Erin Quinlan is the Content Marketing Manager of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology. You can find The Silent Partner Marketing on Google+Facebook, and Twitter

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Should Your Business Use A Group Or A Company Page On LinkedIn?

By Kyle Reyes


We recently had one of our newer clients ask us about the best way to utilize LinkedIn to grow their exposure and communicate message and events with their followers.  

Let me begin by saying how warm and fuzzy I felt that a business is looking to use LinkedIn the way that it SHOULD be used...not like so many businesses are currently using it.

First - let's break down the benefits of LinkedIn vs. other forms of social media.


1) It's where the big boys and girls are hanging out.  People, generally speaking, are on LinkedIn to do business - not to share pictures of their dog eating bacon.  That simple fact increases the quality of potential leads for your business.
2) More people are looking for a direct service.  While many social media platforms deliver information such as the cool restaurant to eat at or the best place to get your car fixed - LinkedIn backs this information with the opportunity to provide direct referrals and much more professional introductions.
3. You can separate personal from business.  With LinkedIn, the overall environment is one of a higher level of class.  You're more easily able to separate your private life or business shenanigans from your personal ones.

When it comes to LinkedIn, your "Company Page" is the absolute best way to market.  This is where you should be sharing upcoming events, blogs, services, referrals and examples of your work.  It's very easy to confuse the role of your company page with your group, as both offer similar opportunities for exposure.  You should think about the Company Page as your business website.  Use it to generate sales and provide value for your customers....and allow it to reveal the "human side of your company" as LinkedIn puts it.

With that being said, "groups" offer more control over privacy.  They should be utilized for more interpersonal conversations about industry trends and analysis.  Think of it like this.  If you are a furniture store, you'll want to use the Company Page to promote your brand and your products.  But you may want to share feedback and concerns with similar businesses in the industry across the country, and so you won't want to be discussing that publicly.  That's where a group comes in.  It allows you to discuss the shrinking economy and best practices for your business without having to list this information on the public platform.  You are in complete control and have the ability to invite professionals to the group...or kick them out.

If you're at the point where you're trying to decide between a Company Page and a Group on LinkedIn...you're way above the curve when it comes to businesses using social media.  Now it's time to fine-tune that presence and use it to represent your business.

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Kyle Reyes is the President and Creative Director of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology.  You can find him on Google+Facebook and Twitter.  He's the Chuck Norris of marketing.  It's outrageous - we know.  That's kind of the point.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Why You Should Use Video in Real Estate Marketing

By Erin Quinlan

Do you remember the name of your real estate agent?

According to one source, 70 percent of home buyers forget their agent's name after the first year.

That’s a huge number! And if you’re a real estate agent, it’s not going to make you feel all warm and fuzzy.

Let The Silent Partner Marketing help you out – with video marketing. Video marketing? Yes, video marketing.

The concept of video marketing started in the 1990s, so it’s something that is rapidly developing. Video marketing has become the newest, most popular method that connects the user with a product because by nature it is quick, concise and delivers a sincere message.

In the real estate industry using videos to market yourself is still practically an untapped market with only 12 percent of real estate agents having a YouTube account – that oftentimes isn’t adequately used or updated.

Video marketing can have a huge effect on gaining and maintaining new clients.
Did you know that 50 percent of interactivity online is video based? Or that YouTube is the second most popular search engine for media? How about that 73 percent of sellers are most likely to list with an agent using video to market themselves versus agents without video?

Google also ranks videos higher because consumers like video. Once a video is on the first page of Google, consumers are 41 percent more likely to click a video thumbnail rather than a picture or link.

Video also keeps the user there longer, gives you a wider window to make a good impression, and successfully retain that lead.

A video that’s roughly five minutes long gives you a chance to connect with your potential clients before even shaking their hand. It also demonstrates your expertise as a realtor and a willingness to put your reputation on the line.

According to VideoBrewery.com, a real estate group that incorporates video receives 403 percent more inquiries than those without video.

Wouldn’t you want numbers like that?

Based on statistics from a joint study by Google and the National Association of Realtors, consumers want to view community videos to educate, listing videos/tours, “how-to” videos on the buying and selling process, “testimonial” videos to help establish trust, and videos about you and your company.

It can all sound a little overwhelming, but it is certainly worth the effort.

Ready to set yourself apart from the competition?


Give The Silent Partner Marketing a call at 866-432-6456 or e-mail Kyle Reyes at kyle@thesilentpartnermarketing.com and we can help you out.



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Erin Quinlan is the Content Marketing Manager of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology. You can find The Silent Partner Marketing on Google+Facebook, and Twitter

Friday, August 29, 2014

The History of Social Media

By Erin Quinlan

We’re all familiar with social media today, but do you remember the early days of it?

Who remembers Classmates.com?

Early users couldn’t create profiles, but they could locate long-lost grade schoolmates. It was a hit almost immediately, and even today the service boasts some 57 million registered accounts.

In 2002, social networking hit really its stride with the launch of Friendster. Friendster used a degree of separation concept similar to that of the now-defunct SixDegrees.com, refined it into a routine dubbed the “Circle of Friends,” and promoted the idea that a rich online community can exist only between people who truly have common bonds.

Within a year after its launch, Friendster boasted more than three million registered users and a ton of investment interest.

Introduced in 2003, LinkedIn took a more serious, sober approach to social networking. Rather than being a mere playground for former classmates and teenagers, LinkedIn was, and still is, a networking resource for business people who want to connect with other professionals. Today, LinkedIn boasts more than 297 million members.

MySpace also launched in 2003. Though it no longer the top social media platform in many English-speaking countries, MySpace was once the perennial favorite. It did so by tempting the key young adult demographic with music, music videos, and a fun, feature-filled environment.

Facebook now leads the global social networking pack. Facebook launched in 2004 as a Harvard-only exercise and remained a campus-oriented site for two years before finally opening to the general public in 2006. The site currently boasts more than 1.3 billion active users.

One key to Facebook’s success was the “Like” button. Now you can “like” or “tweet” just about everything even when you’re not on Facebook or Twitter.

Realizing the power of social networking, Google decided to launch its own social network (Google+) in 2007. It differed from Facebook and Twitter in that it wasn’t necessarily a full-featured networking site, but rather a social “layer” of the overall Google experience. Within just four weeks, Google+ had garnered 25 million unique visitors, with as much as 540 million active monthly users as of June 2014.

Over the course of the past two years, smartphones, tablets, etc. have changed social networking and the way we communicate with one another entirely. Given the abrupt rise in mobile computing, it’s not surprising the most popular social media platforms of the past several years hinge on the capabilities of smartphones.
Photo and video-sharing applications such as Snapchat and Instagram, the latter of which has now garnered 20 billion images since the app’s initial inception in October 2010, exist almost entirely on mobile.

The same goes with platforms such as Foursquare, an application in which users use their smartphones to check in to various locations around the globe, and various matchmaking services.

Tinder currently boasts more than 10 million daily users, each of which swipes for potential partners based on their approximately in relation to their smartphone.

Mobile-based platforms also approach social networking in an entirely different fashion than their web-based counterparts. Rather than offering a comprehensive social networking experience like Myspace and Google+, they instead specialize in a specific kind of interaction service that involves the sharing of public images (Instagram), the private sharing of images sharing (Snapchat), augmented reality (Foursquare), and location-based matchmaking (Tinder).

People now exist on multiple platforms, and instead of fighting against this trend, companies are tapping into this new environment.

It appears that many people have high hopes that virtual reality will become the next blockbuster computing platform. The technology already exists, and with the consumer version of the Oculus Rift VR headset slated to go on sale in late 2014 for under $300, the potential for widespread adoption of virtual reality has never been greater.

Need help wrapping your head around all the social media trends?

Give The SilentPartner Marketing a call at 866-432-6456 or e-mail Kyle Reyes at kyle@thesilentpartnermarketing.com and we can help you out.



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Erin Quinlan is the Content Marketing Manager of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology. You can find The Silent Partner Marketing on Google+Facebook, and Twitter

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Top Reasons Why You Should Buy "Likes"

By Kyle Reyes

Why buying likes on Facebook is an epic fail.
Yeah, I knew that would get your attention.
There's a lot of excitement out there among many businesses who've found that they could buy "likes" and "friends" on social media.  
I'd imagine many of these people were the "cool kids" in high school.
So as I continue our "Fixing Your Facebook Failures" series, here are the top reasons why you should buy Facebook likes.
1.  You want to DECREASE the number of actual real people who see your post.
Until you achieve a high level of engagement from fans, each post only reaches 4-6% of your followers.  So do the math on that one.  Buy a 1,000 followers for $4.50, and watch as the number of actual people you reach decreases...and the level of engagement decreases as well.
2.  You want your paid posts to be a waste of money.
When you pay to "boost" your post (as opposed to a more targeted Facebook advertising approach through Ads Manager, you reach a higher number of your fans.  Let's think about this.  You've bought 1,000 followers for $4.50, then spent $20 to promote your post and have now reached 1,000 fans.  Congrats.  You've now wasted approximately $24.50.
3.  You want your level of engagement to drop.
The better your post, the more people will engage with it.  Which means the more people that will have it populate in their newsfeed.  But simple math here dictates that with these fake likes, even a higher level of engagement among fans will be a lower overall percentage than it would have otherwise...which means that Facebook won't be nearly as impressed as it would have otherwise been.
4.  You want Facebook to shut you down.
Buying likes is against Facebook's terms of service.  That means they can shut you down indefinitely.  And that's DEFINITELY not going to help your cause.

But is it ONLY purchased likes that are low-quality likes?  Nope.
Here's where I'm about to sound unappreciative.

Many people "liked" The Silent Partner Marketing on Facebook recently.  Not that I blame you.  We're sort of likeable.  But many of you did so only to ask for us to "like" you back.  Which, of course, we did.

But here's my question to you...and one you should ask everyone.  Why should I like you?  What value are you going to provide to me...as someone who may potentially live thousands of miles away from you?  If you aren't providing value...then my "like" is no different from one that you've purchased.

So what does it take to provide a high level of engagement?  Keep checking back.  Our next blog in the series will discuss adding value to your customers.
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Kyle Reyes is the President and Creative Director of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology.  You can find him on Google+Facebook and Twitter.  He's the Chuck Norris of marketing.  It's outrageous - we know.  That's kind of the point.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Why Your Business Needs a Digital Marketing Strategy

By Erin Quinlan

It’s clear that the internet is here to stay and if you’re in business, you’re going to need to use it to grow your business.

Do you have a digital marketing strategy?

If not – and even if you do – let The Silent Partner Marketing help you out. We can make sure that everything is fresh, relevant, and is being seen.

Why do you need to have a digital marketing strategy?

Many companies without a digital strategy – and even some that do – don’t have clear strategic goals for what they want to achieve online in terms of gaining new customers or building deeper relationships with existing ones.

Without a digital marketing strategy, you won’t know your online marketing share. Customer demand for online services may be underestimated if you haven’t researched this. You also won’t understand your online marketplace. The dynamics will be different to traditional channels with different types of customer profile and behavior, competitors, propositions, and options for marketing communications.

If you’re not devoting enough resources to digital marketing, your competitors will be able to gain a share in the market.

Digital marketing can increase your reach. With Facebook shares, Twitter retweets, e-mail forwards, inbound links, and other methods of digital sharing, your existing customers and fans can do the job of promoting you and your company for you.

That means you’ll reach new potential customers, simply by pleasing your existing customers and building their trust.

Also, consumers have access to huge amounts of knowledge and can compare products, prices, and services without ever leaving the house or talking to a salesperson. Almost 60 percent of the consumer’s purchasing process is done before they even come into contact with the supplier. This means that more than half of the purchasing decision is made through online research, typically starting with a search engine inquiry.

Without a digital marketing strategy, you won’t know your online customers enough. You need to use other forms of website user feedback tools to identify your weak spots and then address them.

Oftentimes, businesses don’t give the digital realm enough people or resources. Without this, it will be difficult to respond to competitive threats – or crisis situations – quickly or effectively enough.

Without a digital marketing strategy, you’re not effectively optimizing what you have. Every company with a website will have analytics, but oftentimes, people don’t make or have the time to review and act on them.

Ready to make the most of what you have? Need some help getting started?

Give The Silent Partner Marketing a call at 866-432-6456 or e-mail Kyle Reyes at kyle@thesilentpartnermarketing.com and we’ll handle it.



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Erin Quinlan is the Content Marketing Manager of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology. You can find The Silent Partner Marketing on Google+Facebook, and Twitter

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

2014 Manchester Chef's Challenge

By Kyle Reyes

One of the reasons our firm runs the marketing for a lot of restaurants is because at heart, my entire team is comprised of fat kids.

So when the opportunity arises to capture food on camera...and support a great cause...we get particularly excited.

This coming Sunday is the 2nd Annual Manchester Chef's Challenge.  Manchester restaurants will battle for top honors...and it means a feast for all of you.

The event will take place from 2-5pm at Cheney Hall in Manchester, Connecticut.

But WE got to film the battle that will lead up to that final war.

This year, our team kidnapped chefs from Villa Louisa in Bolton, the Manchester Country Club, CW's Chops 'N' Catch, Hartford Road Cafe, Main Street Pub and Brown Sugar Catering.  We brought them to Highland Park Market in Manchester, which gave them a budget of $50 to buy a boatload of ingredients.

The chefs each had 30 minutes - INCLUDING - shopping time - to prepare a dish.  The other little twist?  We waited until they started cooking to hit them with a mystery ingredient.

Want to see the mystery ingredient?  Watch the videos and see how your favorite chef did.  Click here to check out the Vimeo channel and watch the battle.

Then come down to the event itself.  Tickets are $15 in advance for adults, $20 at the door, $10 for seniors over age 65 and $2 for children under 12.

For more details, click here.





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Kyle Reyes is the President and Creative Director of The Silent Partner Marketing, a boutique marketing firm focused on helping businesses grow in an age of exploding technology.  You can find him on Google+Facebook and Twitter.  He's the Chuck Norris of marketing.  It's outrageous - we know.  That's kind of the point.