Capital Ideas


A Marketing Company

Capital Ideas

A Marketing Company

How we do business…

Capital Ideas opened its doors in May of 2009 without a single business partner.

Our mission was to help businesses create and tell their story and to deliver that story to current and new customers. For too long advertising and marketing have been looked at as a necessary evil. Thanks to poorly managed media sales teams, the chance for success, without professional help, can be a crapshoot at best.

In reality, advertising and marketing are the lifeblood of all businesses, as the best means to effectively and efficiently communicate with customers and to grow their business.

Capital Ideas understands and respects the power of advertising and marketing and the roles that they play in business growth.

Current and Recent Business Partners

Services we provide and things we feel strongly about…


Creative Services is the development of the look and feel of how a business is presented to the public.  That creative look and feel are the engines that drive the train. Creative grabs the viewer/listener and pulls them into the message. We feel that creative needs to be focused, simple, (possibly) clever and most importantly, consistent. We concentrate on producing a campaign, not a commercial.

Media Planning

This is where the magic begins. A strong media plan is like putting together a complicated puzzle.  All the pieces need to be analyzed for their potential to effectively and efficiently fit into the strategy and to drive the creative message.

Media Buying

Purchasing media is an art. Negotiating rates, time periods and value-earned opportunities are critical to a business partner’s success and staying within budget. There is a delicate balance between paying low rates and having your schedule run as ordered.

The number of media options to choose from, for a business to spend their budget and get their name out there, seems to grow by the day.  They can be simply summed up as “Traditional Media”, “New Media” and “Other”.


We like to look at production as the front door to a business.  If that front door is cluttered, messy and unattractive, that’s the first impression people have about that business.  If a TV commercial is poorly put together, or a radio commercial sounds muffled or rushed, people are going to have a poor impression of that business.


We are blessed in Iowa to have more jobs than people to fill them. Recruiting and retaining employees are critical needs for many of our clients.  Recruitment doesn’t happen every once in a while but needs to be a constant and consistent effort in order to be successful.  To embed a recruitment message in your media campaign can be amazingly powerful.

Public Relations

Once in a while, a business will have a need or desire for some publicity.  A new location, a milestone anniversary, a special event or something else along those lines can trigger that need. Public relations (PR) can be amazingly powerful or maddeningly frustrating.

We work with business partners to evaluate opportunities and give our honest appraisal of the chances for successfully securing substantial PR exposure.


The reality is that advertising is an investment in the success of a business. Progressive businesses establish an advertising investment, not simply a budget.

Current and Recent Business Partners


Myths: There are many myths surrounding television advertising. Among the most common are… “it is too expensive”,  “no one watches live TV anymore” and “people fast forward through all commercials”.

Reality: Television can certainly be expensive, but in most cases, it is not. Many times we are buying TV commercials at less than what we are paying for radio commercials. While there is a shift happening with live viewing (depending on your target audience!), television still has a dominant lead in its ability to reach (and persuade) a sizable audience. Do some people fast forward through commercials? Of course, they do. In reality, it is a small percentage, and we have found that a well-produced commercial has the ability to get people to stop, and rewind, to watch that commercial..


Myths: We hear from many business partners that satellite radio is all that people listen to anymore.  We also hear that radio is too fragmented to be effective.

Reality: The percentage of people listening to satellite radio (or Pandora, Spotify, etc.) is extremely small. The most recent percentage we saw was in the 6-8% range. Fragmentation is not only a good thing, it is a great thing. Fragmentation allows you to specifically target a certain group of people, usually at a much more cost-effective rate. The ability to hone in on your target audience makes your schedule not only effective but much more efficient.


Myths: Print is dead!  Print is expensive!

Reality:  Print is not dead, but it is evolving or trying to evolve.  Print subscriptions are in a severe decline and have been for years.   This trend is expected to continue.  Newspapers are moving more and more information to the web and are hoping readers, and advertisers follow.  In the meantime, there are still tens of thousands of paying subscribers for the print product.  Depending on your customer base, there are still values to be found in print.

Other Services Offered…

Website Development

Your website has only seconds to capture interest. Think about articles you’ve read, speeches you’ve heard, books you’ve begun. The initial exposure helps people determine whether you want to spend more time reading, listening or viewing. There is just too much competition for time to expect that people will invest too much of theirs in trying to overcome a bad website. 

Graphic Design

A company logo may be the single most important piece of a corporation’s identity. We understand that graphic design has a unique ability to persuade and sell a product with the help of adequate communications and aesthetics. Branding is increasingly important and has seconds to impress the audience. Like a masterful piece of artwork, the ideal graphic design needs to tap inner emotions, visually stimulate, and engrave itself into memory. From logos, brochures, web graphics, advertising banners, all social media headers and ads, flyers we have customized solutions to cost-effectively enable your business to thrive.

Current and Recent Business Partners

Our C.A.S.E. Process…


The process is as simple as it is effective, but for the consultation phase to work, it takes honest and open communication and cooperation between partners. At Capital Ideas we believe that we are always in the consultation phase whether it be bouncing ideas, examining thoughts or evaluating opportunities. We have no desire to be a buying service. Our goal is to be a valued partner in growing your business.



The next critical step is analysis. A partnership cannot move forward successfully without fully examining what’s been done in the past. Successes and failures both need to be examined and evaluated. It is very important during this phase to identify the true customer base.  A very wise media buyer many years ago told me that “25-54 Adults” was a family reunion, not a true demographic group.  Analysis of more specific criteria in relation to the current and potential customer base for our business partners and the most effective and efficient way to reach them is critical to success.


With nearly 35 years of local media experience, we have learned ways of doing things that have proven to be successful. To achieve goals and build your business, you need these types of proven strategies and approaches. While it is important to stay open to new ideas, it is equally important to weigh such opportunities against tried and true strategies.


The previous three phases could all fail miserably without proper execution.  This encompasses everything from preproduction to reconciliation.

Whether it be print, digital, outdoor billboards, radio or television, there are many moving pieces to all successful campaigns and knowing how those different (but related) pieces work is extremely important to the success of a campaign.

Execution encompasses everything from preproduction, production, order placement & confirmation, the campaign launch, trafficking & delivering ads to each media, to the post-schedule reconciliation.

The final, and possibly most important piece of the process is Reconciliation!

For electronic (TV and radio) media, the post-buy evaluation includes:  Did the correct commercial run?  Did it run where it was ordered?  Was the commercial rotation adhered to? Did it run at the agreed-upon cost?  Did it run adjacent to a competing business?   Knowing how to read the TV and radio station affidavits (and what to look for) is crucial to the campaign success.

For print, did the ad run where ordered and promised? Was the size correct? Was the image quality above average? Was the cost correct?  Did it run on the day it was ordered/promised?

Advertising is not inexpensive so it is imperative to make sure the schedule has every opportunity to produce (or over-produce) results!  We make certain this happens.

Current and Recent Business Partners

Our Team…

Capital Ideas has one of the largest and best teams in the business. The great majority of that team is made up of custom-selected media reps from the majority of TV and radio stations in Iowa.  In addition, we have trusted partners in all facets of the marketing and advertising industry.  A rough estimate would be between 100 and 175 media reps, editors, graphic design professionals, videographers, web designers and digital partners.  These are all freelance partners who have proven to work at a high level of quality we demand for our business partners.



In addition to the freelance team, we have THE best support team in the business.  That support team is named Barb.  I have had the great pleasure of working with Barb three different times in my professional life.  Twice in the cable TV business and now at Capital Ideas.  Barb’s title is Attention to Detail Officer.  She is a tireless worker, and her attention to detail is unmatched.  She combs through invoices and affidavits like a forensic scientist.  She literally saves our clients thousands of dollars a year.  She is also a true delight to work with. 

Another key piece of our team is our great companion Buster Posey, a very excitable Fox Terrier.  There is not a media rep (or mailman) who has not heard Buster’s boisterous greeting.  

The Captain of the ship is in charge of client relations, acquisition & retention, creative direction, and media.  I am happy to wear this many hats as I find each one to be not only challenging but invigorating.  I’ve always loved to write, and in all honesty, I find media planning to be akin to putting together a complex but important puzzle.

I was in sales and sales management at the cable company (25 years…five companies) and loved it but felt that 25 years was a good time to see what the next chapter of my life held for me.  I’ve found the agency business to be great fun, and I could not be more proud of our client list, and the work we’ve done for them.  

Current and Recent Business Partners

Office Hours

Monday-Friday 8AM-4:30PM


Des Moines, IA 50312

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