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GS3 Global's Executive Positioning of Lisa Lunsford

Situation

GS3 Global was founded in 2010, a Metro Detroit-based supply-chain management company that provides assembly, warehousing, sequencing, engineering services and technology solutions.

Van Dyke Horn (VDH)’s relationship with GS3 Global began in Fall 2014. We quickly identified opportunities to elevate the reputation of the company by establishing its CEO and co-founder, Lisa Lunsford, as a key thought-leader with a unique voice in the industry, as well as an exemplar of workplace innovation, diversity and entrepreneurship.

Having achieved substantial results in the first year of our engagement, we were both encouraged by our early wins and driven to improve upon our results. During 2016 and 2017, VDH worked to transition the GS3 narrative from the story of a new brand to the successes of a sustainable and growing enterprise, led by an exemplary female CEO with insight into the details of building and maintaining a diverse and flexible business model, as well as expertise in the finer points of leadership.

CLIENT

DESHLER GROUP 

GS3 GLOBAL

SERVICES

EXECUTIVE POSITIONING

Strategy

VDH pursued a targeted media relations strategy, pitching editorial opportunities and interviews with general business and industry-specific publications, such as Crain’s Detroit Business and Automotive News, in line with targeted publications’ editorial calendars. We also developed applications for awards and recognition that highlighted Lunsford’s professional and personal profile. This key part of our strategy relied on our ability to generate media interest in the ongoing story of a growing company and the unique perspective and achievements of its chief executive. To differentiate the GS3 Global story and define our narrative, we tuned our pitches to the specific points of GS3 Global and Lunsford’s story that corresponded to each media outlet’s editorial focus (general business, automotive industry, women in leadership, minority-focused, regional focus, etc.).

VDH also cultivated and pursued speaking opportunities at conferences, award ceremonies and industry events, particularly those that highlight women in leadership, the automotive industry, STEM education, mentoring and entrepreneurship. We sought to enhance GS3 Global’s profile in the greater business community, specifically through membership in industry and regional business organizations, facilitating increased investment and participation in events and initiatives.

As the CEO of GS3 Global and vice president of Deshler Group, Lunsford’s available time to participate in our strategy is limited. Therefore, in addition to regular strategy updates, our team needed to maintain up-to-date company information and prep documents to be ready for immediate opportunities, such as interviews with short deadlines.

Success

VDH has successfully coordinated and prepared the client for earned media interviews and coverage in several of the region’s most influential publications, including Crain’s Detroit Business, DBusiness, and Automotive News. Lunsford was also featured in on-air interviews to discuss her business success and future workforce development with Editorial Director Chuck Stokes on WXYZ-TV and with Nolan Finley, Detroit News editorial director and co-host of Detroit Public Television’s MiWeek, among others.

We have also worked to maintain relationships with a variety of industry and general interest media, focused on other aspects of GS3 Global’s success, and on Lunsford as a business leader. We’ve continued to diversify Lunsford’s media presence among a broader spectrum of outlets while maintaining strong relationships with the publications that had been instrumental in first establishing GS3 Global and Lunsford’s public profile.

VDH has researched and crafted successful applications for Crain’s Detroit Business’s 100 Most Influential Women, Corp! Magazine’s Diversity Business Leaders and DBusiness’s Powered by Women, resulting in subsequent media coverage, interviews, and speaking engagements. Lunsford’s public appearances have included presentations given at the annual DBusiness “Powered by Women” event, the inaugural Automotive News “Leading Women Network” conference and the 2016 TieCon Detroit conference. Lunsford has taken part in panel discussions at the Automotive News and TieCon events, as well as the 2016 NAWBO “Women on Board” event.

Since 2017, we’ve continued to position Lunsford as a successful business leader in the manufacturing industry. She continues to make frequent panel appearances at various automotive and women business events, such as the AN Leading Women Network Conference, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s #LetsGrow roundtable, AWAF Leadership in Motion, the 2018 Driven Youth Symposium and the Detroit Policy Conference. She has also won additional leadership and company awards, including Crain’s Detroit Business’s Most Notable Women in Manufacturing and Small Business Association of Michigan’s 50 Companies to Watch. 

Most recently, she has been named one of Automotive News’ 100 Leading Women in North American Automotive Industry for the second time in a row. 

GS3 Global, alongside the seven sister companies that make up the Deshler Group, continues to be a proud client of Van Dyke Horn.