For our second event of the semester, two presenters from Macy's came in to speak to us about e-commerce retail, specifically within Macys.com Young Collections Bedding. This was particularly exciting to me because it combines two of my favorite things in the whole world, which are: 1.) the Internet, and 2.) my bed. As you all may have guessed, selling goods on the Internet is very different from selling in a store. We learned that bedding is a very trendy product category within Macy's, and several key considerations must be made when running online promotions. Also, we saw lots of photos of beds, which looked comfy and stylish and totally on-trend (I think a NYFW for beds seems like a good idea for the future...ahhhhh).
As a Buyer within this division, Beth Rudnick showed us how marketing plays a key role in her job and is constantly evolving based on ongoing research. Optimization is key! Email marketing, for example, involves analyzing metrics from various forms of an email message to determine which design variations will help maximize conversions (a conversion involves someone clicking through to the Macy's site and making a purchase). Emails are also moving towards becoming more and more personalized, as advanced technology can track what we've shopped for and tailor the products shown in our emails accordingly. This seems super-innovative, yet also a little creepy (Beth even called it the "Big Brother Idea"). Thankfully, all the information they collect is kept private, so no worries there!
As a side note, a lot of the cool information in this presentation was covered in a course I took last semester called Social Media and Digital Marketing Analytics. I'd highly recommend it if you're interested in learning more about web and mobile marketing.
Also, Potbelly delivered our food late but redeemed itself by throwing in some cookies with our order! Thanks Potbelly =')
On Wednesday this week, we had a pretty awesome speaker come in: the man who single-handedly created the Digital Media Department at Nickelodeon. This is because you only need one hand to create a Twitter account, says Jack Daley, VP of Consumer Marketing at Nickelodeon. Daley was an instrumental part in Nickelodeon's movement into social media. He talked about three aspects of media. Owned Media, (the TV channel and website with the on-air promos and .com groups), Paid Media, (off-channel advertising), and Earned Media (press and social media). Daley worked mainly in the last two categories. I'm going to go on a tangent real quick and talk about 90's Nickelodeon and how awesome it was. IT WAS AWESOME. And the reason those shows are back on Nick is all thanks to Daley himself. He saw that people were asking for shows like All That and Doug to come back on air, and he made it happen. So make sure you tweet at him @jackeveryday to say thanks. (Also, let me point out how clever his handle is for those who missed it. Daley=daily=every day. Get it?)
Now back to our regularly scheduled program.
Daley emphasized that Nickelodeon isn't just for 8 year olds. One third of the viewing audience for Spongebob is over 18! On the topic of Spongebob, did you know that Spongebob has more Facebook likes than both presidential candidates combined? Even Patrick has more likes than Mitt Romney. Daley mentioned that his department sees what is coming in the realm of social media and tries to leverage it. They mostly use platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr. It was on these platforms that Avatar: The Last Airbender fans "foamed at the mouth" and demanded more. Thus, The Legend of Korra and KorraNation were born. Daley described social media as a "marketing database." It is easy to understand what fans are looking for or to see what they like and don't like by seeing what the like on Facebook or by seeing how many mentions a show has on Twitter. It's a useful, effective, and inexpensive source of data.
Nickelodeon is looking for a lot of user engagement which is why this year for the Kids Choice Awards, there introduced many more ways to vote. This new system resulted in 223 million votes for the nominees. That's insane! But that just shows how important it is for companies to be engaging customers in the social media realm.
Thanks to everyone who came out to this event and thanks to STEBA for co-sponsoring. Check your emails for events that are coming up next week!
PS Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is making a comeback! Watch out for the Foot!
On Wednesday of this week, guest speaker Emily Christner, VP of Marketing at tvguide.com and TV Guide Moblie, came in to give us "straight talk about the TV business." After everyone loaded up on tasty fajitas from (PRODUCT PLACEMENT ALERT) Fresh Tortilla Express, Emily started talking about the wonderful world of TV Guide Digital. She started off with a poll question: "What do you think of when you hear or see TV Guide?" A lot of people mentioned their grandmas and a couple people mentioned their parents. One student aptly summed up the general consensus when they said, "I think of old people." Now now, before anyone gets offended, let me lay down some facts. TV Guide is a lot younger than most people think: Half of tvguide.com users are under 35 years of age.
Emily talked a bit about the concept of social tv. Social tv, according to a poll TV Guide conducted is "being able to connect with shows, actors, and other people." So live tweeting during new episodes of shows and checking in to FourSquare to say you're watching a show are a few examples. Social media makes people feel like they can save a show that is in the talks of being dropped; sometimes they can save a show. Lots of television networks rely on companies like Nielsen to gauge a success of a show, but sometimes Twitter is a more accurate indicator.
One of the coolest things that Emily mentioned was tvguide.com's The Watchlist. The Watchlist is basically your own personalized TV Guide. You start by adding tv shows and movies and actors you watch and like. Then, you will get a super long list of what channel the show will be on or when the next movie with your favorite actor will be on or where you can stream that episode or movie online. It also comes in app form- for FREE! It's really cool. And if you don't believe me, maybe you'll believe TechCrunch, and TechCrunch never calls anything cool. So it's kind of a big deal. Check it out for yourself at tvguide.com. Also, check out these articles from the Wall Street Journal and the New York TImes:
Thanks to everyone who came, we hope you enjoyed it. Next Monday we will be having our Adversay Kick-off featuring Best of the Summer Ads and on Wednesday Jack Daley, the VP of Marketing at Nickelodeon, will be coming in! So excited. Nick's 90s cartoons were my childhood. Finally, Thursday is the Haagen Dazs Mentor Mingle. Can't wait to have some new buddies!