LaVonne Brown: Life-long learner of IMC

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LaVonne is the Director of Client Experience and Director of Marketing for a privately held wealth management firm in Rockford, Illinois.  She has over 18 years of experience in the sales, public relations, marketing, hospitality, customer relations, and tourism industries as well as experience in financial services, non-profit management, event planning, and fundraising.   Throughout her career, she has personally  experienced the growing need for an integrated approach to marketing.  As a life-long learner poised with an optimistic approach, she enjoys today’s challenging world of communications and marketing.

Hello World! A Marketer’s Indy 500: Emerging Media puts Consumers in the Driver’s Seat

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You might be thinking that I am a fan of NASCAR, right?  I only follow racing just enough to know that the pit crew plays an incredible role in the success of the driver but ultimately, the driver presses the accelerator and maneuvers the track.

As a marketing professional in today’s ever-changing and extremely fast-paced world of technology I often feel like my job is more of a pit crew leader, creating and selecting the best tools and strategies all while the consumer is flying past me. Consumers have greater power and influence over brands today mainly due to the constant emerging media platforms. 

My blog will explore and discuss  ways emerging media is affecting the fields of marketing and communication.  Technology is moving at a rapid pace and without a keen sense for what is happening around us, efforts to promote our brands can quickly become ineffective or worse yet completely derailed.

Consider the voice of Molly Katchpole, a 22-year old recent college graduate who took on the Verizon Corporation when they introduced a $2 convenience charge for paying a bill online or via your mobile phone.  She crafted a petition, utilized social networking and the website Change.org to rally for her cause and assembled 165,000 signatures in a matter of hours.  Verizon backed down shortly afterwards.  Prior to the Internet and social media, this entire scenario would have taken months or years.

There certainly is reason to celebrate when it comes to new emerging media trends as well.  Consumers having a stronger voice can also level the playing field for smaller brand’s that may not have the advertising and marketing dollars to tell their story. 

Take the story of the Tough Mudder competitions for example. These are hard-core 10 –12 mile obstacle races not for the faint of heart.  Wil Dean and Guy Livingston came up with the concept of Tough Mudder while attending Harvard Business School.  Armed with an $8,000 marketing budget they launched their first location and event on Facebook in 2010.   Tough Mudder competitions are listed in 28 locations throughout the United States in 2012.  Go to You Tube   and see the experience for yourself.

What emerging media trend has you most excited? Please feel free to comment and share your thoughts.