by Peter Rugg
Evans is the president and CEO of Evans Media Group in Overland Park. They're a traditional advertising agency, focusing more and more and using social networks to pimp out their client's goods and services.
In the case of the Better Marriage Blanket, Evans helped make that an online sensation by hitting up thousands of friends across the internet and telling them about the product. The classic idea of one friend telling two friends and so on is still the basis, but now it's one friend tells 13,000 friends. He's also working on getting his customers into location-based social networking like FourSquare, so that when you check into a location and the businesses around it pop up, every user will know what deals you have going on. Even if they don't stop by your business, you've just gotten a little more awareness in the market.
Lest you think Evans only uses his powers to sell wacky products, know that his company also helped Lee's Summit high school Our Lady of Presentation go from 75th place to third place in the Kohl's Cares Program -- a program that helps fund schools, assuming they make it to the top 20 of their online voting system where people rank the schools based on how deserving they think they are. Evans' bump -- which was done pro-bono -- earned the school $500,000 this month.
"Right now we're really excited about working with this new, Kansas City-based company Deal Bug. It's similar to Groupon, where you get a deal every day, but with Deal Bug 10 percent of the proceeds go to charity," Evans says. "And you get to choose which charity the money goes to on their site. They've been in operation a little over a month and have already given $3,000 to local charities, so we think there's huge potential for these guys."
Evans is even using his social media prowess when he's out dining. Like the last time he went to the Capital Grill, and the waiter made a mistake, then brought out a free bottle of wine to apologize.
"I sent that out on Twitter," Evans says. "And that's a few thousand people that get a little more awareness of the Capital Grill.