About - Marketing that Matters provides branding, marketing and communications strategy and creative solutions to businesses, organizations and brands aimed at making our world a better place. We solve problems and maximize opportunities, launch products and services, attract customers, generate revenue, tell brand stories, inspire engagement, educate constituents, mobilize movements, and more. And, we don't stop until we get results! Why? Because we love what we do and believe we can make the world a better place by being known for "good." Come see if we’re a fit for your brand.


A sense of purpose. A plan for profit.

Marketing that Matters partners with businesses, nonprofits, and organizations that are helping our world—whether it’s their singular mission or secondary endeavor.

We believe a worthwhile purpose can yield great results AND have powerful impact, and we work to maximize both in everything we do.

Marketing that Matters builds enduring brands by wrapping impactful creative around smart strategy. At the same time, we help you envision, build, manage, live, and protect your brand—your most valuable asset. So you turn a profit. Change the world. Or both.


Marketing that Matters is a one-stop-shop, full-service agency. We team up as your strategic and creative partner, providing fully integrated and multi-channel solutions to help achieve your goals.

Here’s how we can put our talents to work for you:


  • Brand Audits
  • Brand Strategy & Development
  • Rebranding
  • Positioning & Messaging
  • Naming & Taglines
  • Brand Identities – Logo & Visual Identity
  • Brand Campaigns
  • Brand Implementation
  • Specialty: Living the Brand Workshops & Training
  • Specialty: Destination, Community Branding


  • Communications Audits
  • Marketing Audits
  • Best Practices Review
  • Customer/Audience & Market Research
  • Communications Strategy & Plans
  • Marketing Strategy & Plans
  • Content Marketing Strategy & Plans
  • Digital Marketing Strategy & Plans
  • Event Planning
  • New Product Launch Plans
  • PR and/or Media Plans

Marketing Communications

  • Advertising Campaigns — Digital, Print, Broadcast, Out-of-Home, WOM
  • Art Direction & Graphic Design
  • Content Development: Writing, Editing, Storytelling
  • Digital Marketing Solutions – SEO & SEM
  • Email Marketing
  • Events & Promotions
  • Exhibits, Displays, Tradeshow Graphics, Signage
  • Media Planning & Buying
  • Public Relations, Public Affairs
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Website Design and Development

Marketing that Matters is both a consultancy and a “virtual” agency. We gather teams of top talent uniquely suited to address your marketing challenges. Then our team becomes your strategic and creative partner…your brand champion.

What unites us is that we all seek to use our talents for good. We’re entrepreneurial and enthusiastic in our approach. We know resources are tight and we pride ourselves on giving you plenty of bang for your buck. Our work is strategic first, then creative and impactful. We believe in purpose and profit. We’re relationship ready and results obsessed.

It’s in our nature to think BIG and outside the box, to innovate and create, but we do so with specific goals and outcomes in mind and we don’t stop until we get results.

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Worried about your business, missing your customers or simply wondering what’s next? You’re not alone! We’re living and working in some of the most challenging times we’ll ever see. Consumer behavior is shifting as we move from one version of the so-called “new normal” to the next. We want to help you.

In the spring of 2020, we hosted a series of six FREE pop-up conversations and marketing workshops to help small businesses and nonprofits navigate the uncharted territory of operating and communicating during a global health pandemic. We helped more than 50 business owners, nonprofit and organization leaders, and engaged in enlightening strategic conversations to try to navigate this unchartered territory and support each other through it. Thank you to all who joined/participated and co-led these conversations.

Look for more marketing workshops & pop-up convos in 2021.
For now, we’re offering FREE marketing coaching sessions.

FREE COACHING SESSION: Lori Schaefer — Marketing Strategist & Coach — is offering a FREE 60-min. coaching session with any small business owner, organization, or nonproft who wants to talk through any communications or marketing challenge.

Perhaps you’re interested in getting advice on your marketing plan for 2021. Or, youre interested in consulting or  coaching on a particular topic or tactic, like email marketing or social media. Please reach out! This is our way of helping during some pretty crazy and uncharted times. This offer is good through 2020.

Contact Lori direct via the Contact Tab above to set up a free coaching call.


30% Off Reopening Communications Starter Package

This Communications & Marketing Starter Package helps small businesses in the process of reopening after shut down due to Covid-19. We’ll develop your communications strategy & messaging for the reopen AND help execute the plan, including creating content for emails, social media posts and more.

For main-street businesses or those in the hospitality/travel/tourism industry, we have special expertise — and we’re offering rates that are more than 30% off. Worried about cost? We want to help, so let’s talk.

You have enough to worry about with checklists, implementing safety protocols, finding and rehiring staff and more! Let us take care of your communications and marketing.

P.S. Done well, reopen communications and marketing is not a one-time event, but rather an ongoing process.

To Learn more:
Contact Lori using the contact form here
OR Email: Lori@marketingmatters-mn.com



You won’t find a group of more engaged or passionate people to wrap their heads, hearts and talent around your brand. We can’t wait to get started.

Lori Schaefer

Lori Schaefer

Founder & CEO, Chief Strategist & Coach

Lori is an exceptional strategist and gifted communicator who infuses fresh ideas and sound strategy into everything. She puts these talents to work helping clients identify market opportunities and realize them with smart strategy and impactful brand and marketing solutions. Lori has successfully managed people, projects, processes, organizations and brands inthe public, private and nonprofit sectors during the past 25+ years… Read Full Bio

Beth Probst

Beth Probst

Strategist & Writer

Beth is an Emmy award winning television news journalist turned communications and marketing professional. She now splits her time working in public relations at Memorial Medical Center (MMC), a critical access hospital in Ashland, Wisconsin, and working as an independent marketing consultant and writer. Beth’s writing has appeared in Midwest Living Magazine, Pioneer Press, Star Tribune, Lake Superior Magazine & more… Read Full Bio

Charlie Quimby

Charlie Quimby

Strategist & Writer

Charlie refers to himself as a writer — he is, and an extraordinary one at that. But to us, and to our clients, he is a co-strategist, consultant, brand builder, blogger, and a go-to-guy for creative inspiration. Charlie has a passion for assisting organizations with marketing, education and capital campaigns, and helping to build strong nonprofit brands. He teams with Marketing that Matters in this endeavor… Read Full Bio

Chris Gorney

Chris Gorney

Creative Partner/Art Director

What sets Chris Gorney’s designs apart is the strategic energy behind them. With each idea, Chris drives brands forward. He captures their essence and helps stake a claim in the consumer’s mind. To Chris, for every brand and every image, there’s a purpose. And results. When we need to marry brand strategy and solid business thinking with great design, we turn to Chris… Read Full Bio

Jodie Lapchick, Creative Partner/Senior Designer

Jodie Lapchick

Creative Partner/Senior Designer

Collaborator, design strategist, and harnesser of a brand’s true potential. Jodie Lapchick has earned these descriptors and more in her 25+ years in marketing communications. Her career began as an Ad Design major at the Art Institute in 1979-81. From 1998 to 2009, Jodie ran Lapchick Creative, a Portland-based (Maine) strategic marketing firm regarded for its successful branding, messaging, and effective communications… Read Full Bio

Graham Nash

Graham Nash

Creative Partner/Graphic Designer

Trained as a graphic designer and a bit of a jack-of-all-trades, Graham works with clients to create strong brands and visual identities. He is gifted at cranking out new or improved logos and visual identities for start-ups and small businesses on tight budgets, and does so by helping them develop brands with consistency and integrity from print to web to mobile devices. After 15 years working for various marketing departments… Read Full Bio

Glen Wachowiak

Glen Wachowiak

Creative Partner/Copywriter

There are writers. Creative folks who can pull together something to fill empty space. And then there are the thinkers. Creative partners who look past the empty space to understand a brand, dream up a big idea and bring it to life. Glen is a thinker, a concepter who mixes fresh ideas with sound strategies to lift brands out of the expected and into the exceptional… Read Full Bio

Kristin Pladson

Kristin Pladson

Writer & Consumer Insights

A modern day renaissance woman, Kristin has done what so many of us only think about doing: she followed her passion. A passion for writing. Kristin’s fresh and inspired words combine with a keen mind for questions and strategy to provide creative solutions with impact. A writer by passion and now by trade, Kristin brings 15 years of intensive experience in the market research and strategy arena… Read Full Bio


“Through the combination of strategic vision, marketing leadership, and impressive creative talent, Lori Schaefer and the team at Marketing that Matters helped us revitalize the Bluefin Bay brand, create strong brands for two new resorts and a destination spa, and transform our company into a marketing-centered organization. The overall quality of work Lori Schaefer and her team provide — both strategic and tactical — is unmatched. We’ve considered Lori a true strategic partner in our business for more than 13 years. She has helped us achieve a competitive edge and continue to grow our revenue, as well as our loyal customer base. Lori knows hospitality, travel/tourism and destination marketing and helps keep us abreast of the latest technologies and industry trends in an extremely fast-paced and ever-changing landscape. Her expertise and experience are invaluable.”
Dennis Rysdahl, Owner & CEO, Bluefin Bay Family of Resorts 

“Marketing that Matters was both a key strategic and creative partner in successfully branding and marketing Visit Cook County as a one-of-a kind tourism destination. Central to that success was Lori’s vision, marketing skills, leadership, and true passion for the area and the work. She became an expert, consultant, and guide-to-the side as we navigated tricky political landscape and worked to position Visit Cook County in a way that appealed to visitors, as well as internal stakeholders. Lori’s top notch creative team matched her same level of talent and expertise.”
Sally Nankivell, former Executive Director of the Cook County Visitors Bureau

“I have worked with numerous consultants in my 30 years in Consumer Product Goods and Lori Schaefer is at the top of my list! What makes Lori different, is her passion for your business.  Her insatiable curiosity to seek and understand allows her to identify the underlying issues or opportunities, connect the dots and quickly develop effective strategies that impact your business.  What I also appreciate about Lori is her willingness to go the extra mile for her clients.  I always felt that she truly cared about my business and my team.  She was always there when we needed her; you don’t find that very often in today’s transactional world.”
Tim Bratland, VP/GM Post Consumer Brands & Hill Murray Catholic High School Board of Trustees – Executive Committee

“After going through a merger and strategic planning process, we worked with Marketing that Matters on positioning and brand development. Lori helped us navigate a complicated challenge — engaging our board and a diverse set of stakeholders in the rebranding process. She helped unlock the magic of our story and develop a strong positioning for us in the community. Lori’s skills at navigating organizational politics and bringing people together were extremely valuable. On top of that, she was mindful of the resourcefulness and pragmatism you need as a nonprofit making smart choices. She helped us focus on the right things and set us up for long-term success with our new branding and communications strategy and plan.

Lori and her team brought the powerful combination of effective stakeholder engagement, smart strategy, and strong facilitation, as well as expert branding leadership, mixed with just the right amount of passion and creativity! We couldn’t be happier.”
Trisha Reinwald, VP of Member Advancement, Metropolitan Alliance of Connected Communities

“The Central Corridor Funders Collaborative worked with Lori Schaefer and Marketing that Matters from its inception to our planned sunset (2008-2016). The communications strategy that Lori developed held up for the nearly 10 years of operations! It guided more than just our communications, it guided how we worked in the community. Each year, we partnered with Marketing that Matters on specific marketing communications tactics, events, and civic engagement projects to help us share our results and learning.

These events, videos and reports were well-planned, creative, engaging, and beautifully designed. From strategy to content, from events to design, from websites to videos to white papers – Lori Schaefer and the Marketing that Matters team handled it all and far beyond expectations!”
–Mary Kay Bailey, Former Director of the Central Corridor Funders Collaborative

“The Blue Hill Peninsula Chamber of Commerce has worked with Lori Schaefer and Marketing that Matters for the past two years. Lori has provided our organization and board of directors with valuable guidance, including our member small businesses. Whether leading a seminar on marketing strategies for area businesses and organizations, or consulting with our board on large promotions and events, Lori brings experience and fact-based expertise to the table to steer us in the right direction.

Recently, we held a major board of directors retreat with Lori’s planning and facilitation help. She kept us on track and challenged us to dig deeper on big issues. Our board members remarked that they had never felt so connected to our work or had as clear an idea of where we’re heading. We cannot recommend Lori Schaefer highly enough. When you hire her, you’re not just paying for a skilled consultant to help address your marketing needs, you’re gaining a valuable and strategic new member of your team.”
–Chrissy Beardsley Allen, President, Blue Hill Peninsula Chamber of Commerce

“We’ve worked with big marketing firms and with Lori Schaefer and Marketing that Matters, and we definitely prefer working with Lori. Not only does she do outstanding work, but she is a true strategic partner. Her energy, creativity, passion and enthusiasm, and personal attention was unmatched by any other consultant I have ever worked with, and we’ll be reaping the positive benefits of her work for years to come.”
Jim McCorkell, Founder and CEO of College Possible

“Lori Schaefer is a gifted communicator and marketer. She is smart and warm and genuinely thrives on large and complex challenges. If Lori and Marketing that Matters take on a client assignment, trust me – it will get done! Lori has the ability to bring people together. She is a natural coalition builder. Through her work she has focused on civic engagement and community building projects in the most complex of settings. Lori doesn’t do anything half way. She is passionate about her work, and her ability to contribute to a shared outcome is highly valued.”
Chris Mahai, Owner and Managing Partner, Aveus, LLC

“We worked with Lori and the Marketing that Matters team for four years.  Her unique ability to clarify our strategic message and communicate it effectively to our audience was critical to the success of our work at the Business Resources Collaborative. We look forward to working with Lori and her creative team again and regularly recommend her to others.”
Chris Ferguson, Chair of the Business Resources Collaborative, & President and CEO, Bywater Business Solutions

be known for good.

Featured Work -

We love what we do! As your strategic and creative partner, we work across marketing platforms to create meaningful, impactful and measurable solutions that drive results. Whether you measure success in terms of social impact/change (purpose) or business growth (profit), or both -- your success = our success. Let's brainstorm how we can help you!

  • All
  • Branding
  • Out of Home
  • Print
  • Social Media
  • Video-TV
  • Website-Interactive

Practice saying “We get to” rather than “We have to.”
Save a tree. Read on screen.
Think in terms of impact & ROI.
Thank your customers and your colleagues.
Log off. Get outside. Then encourage others to do the same.

Contact - Do you have a marketing challenge that keeps you up at night? Perhaps you're starting a business and need some marketing advice about how and where to begin? We can help!  We're now partnering with clients in Maine, Minnesota, and beyond. Contact us using the form below to see if we're a fit for you.

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    Connect with CEO & Chief Strategist, Lori Schaefer, here.