Archive for February, 2014

MKTG INC RWRDS Heads to Jackson Hole

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Jackson Hole, WY  is one of the most beautiful places on earth. Wyoming interestingly enough has more cattle than people, and it’s apparent. Coming from the concrete jungle of NYC and the overwhelming hordes of people that you need to dodge just to get a Hale and Hearty soup in Chelsea Market, it was very refreshing to be exposed to the expanses of what nature has created.

Just landing in Jackson Hole was one of the most awe-inspiring moments of the trip. It feels as if you’re landing on another planet; one that hasn’t been harvested and spoiled by the footprint of the human race. I half expected to see a herd of Parasaurolophus scamper over the open fields as we disembarked from the jet. (It’s a Jurassic Park reference, freshen up on your paleontology.)

Danielle and I got to spend some amazing quality time with her family, getting a true Jackson experience. We took in the local fare, hit the slopes, enjoyed a local basketball game, went on a sled amongst elk and bald eagles, drove amongst bighorn sheep, and sat in a hot tub at the base of a mountain covered in snow with a sky filled to the brim with stars.

Today there is a greater value placed on experiences, more so than tangible objects or even money. This is a value that we have been offering to our clients and their consumers with every activation, every glass of Johnnie Walker raised, each smile interacting with a favorite Pokémon, or record set with a pair of Nike cleats. I have so many wonderful memories from this trip, and happy to share to anyone willing to listen. I can’t express how thankful I am to all my coworkers that helped me gain this experience, and MKTG INC RWRDS for giving me the opportunity to make such fond memories.

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Written by Ryan Beickert
Ryan Beickert

February 28th, 2014 at 4:26 pm

You’re So Vain

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You probably think this post is about you, don’t you? Let’s admit it—you’ve taken at least one #selfie. Selfies entered our social vocabulary around the early 2000s, the MySpace (remember Tom?) era, and included awful glares from the bathroom mirror. But thanks to front-facing camera and filters (thanks, Instagram!), selfies have been looking a lot better, with people from around the world posing, pouting and tilting their heads in front of a camera and sharing it online.

Selfies have become a sociological phenomenon — so much so that research projects have sprouted up around the topic. Selfiecity is one such project, analyzing over 120,000 selfies online from New York, Sao Paulo, Berlin, Bangkok and Moscow. The project investigated the style of selfies and other demographic differences.

Selfiecity’s findings reveal that people take less selfies than assumed; only about 3-5% of the images Selfiecity analyzed were considered selfies. Women share more selfies than men; and particularly stronger in Moscow than in any other cities covered by the project. However, selfies from Moscow feature fewer smiling faces than those from Bangkok (what’s up with that?).

With life-logging easier than ever, the selfie phenomenon will not likely fade anytime soon. So, take one today—you won’t be the only one!

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Written by Alayne Luistro
Alayne Luistro

February 27th, 2014 at 3:14 pm

Super Bowl 2014: Nike Hall of Innovation & Training Day

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With the bright lights of football’s biggest moment shining on NYC, NIKE capitalized on the energy around Super Bowl XLVIII by creating a ‘Hall of Innovation’ in the heart of Manhattan.

Located at Moynihan Station, the Hall of Innovation was a one of a kind, football and training-based energy space created to showcase the latest in NIKE product innovation, entertain special guests and drive home NIKE’s mantra for the week: UNLEASH SPEED. MKTG INC was responsible for overall production around three elevated events in the space as part of the ‘NIKE Fast Night Series.’

The series kicked off on 1.28 with HS Fast Night, an ultra-high-energy competition that challenged students from four NY/NJ high schools to Unleash Speed in hopes of being named the fastest team in the tri-state. Participants competed in an obstacle course, 40-yard dash, tug of war, social media competition and dance contest to measure all aspects of speed as NFL stars like Tavon Austin, Rueben Randle and Jairus Byrd decided the champion. In the end,  Don Bosco Prep (NJ) emerged victorious and took home the first-ever Fast Night trophy.

To round out the programming at Moynihan, Young Athletes (1.29) and a select group of VIPs (1.31) got their moment in the Fast Night sun as well, going through similar competitions and drills allowing them to experience first-hand the latest in Nike innovation.

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TRAINING DAY

During the Super Bowl, Americans eat approximately 30 million lbs. of snacks and drink over $10 billion in beer and soda.  The next day 7 million of them call in sick.

With that insight in mind, NIKE and MKTG INC took over the days following the game to get New Yorkers moving and out of a post-Super Bowl slump. On Day 1, we headed to PS1 and PS218 in the Bronx, and motivated kids to move with a workout from NIKE Master Trainer Holly Rilinger. NY Giants WR Victor Cruz joined in the action at PS218, adding some football-based star power to the movement.

On Day 2 it was time to hit the commuters, as we popped up with coffee trucks at 3 high-traffic locations (Washington Square, Union Square, Penn Station).  With the enticement of free coffee/hot chocolate and a NIKE tee, ambassadors motivated consumers to complete a series jumping jacks or squats to get moving in the early morning. We followed up our commuter activation with gym takeovers at BRICK NYC and Barry’s Bootcamp, where consumers were seeded with Training Kits featuring a NIKE+ Fuelband and NIKE gift card as a reward for their commitment. WNBA superstar Skylar Diggins rallied troops at Union Square and Barry’s, as NIKE and MKTG INC laid the foundation for activating beyond the final whistle.

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CIROC’s Hollywood Nights

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To kick off Grammys weekend and salute three-time nominee Robin Thicke, CIROC – along with CBS Radio, LA Confidential, and the Grammy Museum – hosted an energetic party at the Conga Room in downtown LA. The exclusive crowd of industry moguls, celebrities and socialites was treated to specialty premium vodka cocktails in the customized CIROC lounge.

For CIROC’s VIP guests, the festivities continued throughout the weekend, where they were treated to a private tour of the Grammy Museum followed by an intimate acoustic show by Imagine Dragons – who went onto win a Grammy Award the following evening for Best Rock Performance.

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The 56th Grammy Awards, arguably the biggest night in American music, was held on Sunday, January 26th.  The reigning couple of the contemporary music scene, Jay-Z and Beyoncé, opened this spectacular live show with a steamy rendition of Drunk In Love.  This three-hour show at the Staples Center continued with an ensemble of quirky collaborations and outlandish performances from the biggest names in music, including Daft Punk & Stevie Wonder, Taylor Swift, Lorde, Kendrick Lamar & Imagine Dragons … even Paul McCartney & Ringo Starr reunited after being honored with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

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More Words from the WISE

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MKTG INC is a proud member of WISE (Women in Sports and Events), the leading voice and resource for professional women in the business of sports and events.

Through ongoing meetings, special events and mentoring programs, WISE offers its members the opportunity to gain valuable insights and connections that can provide them a competitive advantage in their current position and as they advance in their careers.

WISE offered our own VP of Human Resources, Marlena Edwards, a chance to contribute to the organization’s monthly HR Spotlight, where she shared her experience and tips for working in this exciting industry. Enjoy!

MarlenaEdwards_headshot_200x225wMarlena Edwards is vice president of human resources at MKTG INC, a global marketing services agency based in New York with additional offices in Chicago, Cincinnati, San Francisco, LA and London. During her seven years at MKTG, Edwards has held various HR-related roles including HR manager and director, all of which stem from her background as an HR generalist. Today, her department (which includes payroll) comprises five full-time and one temporary employees.

This month, Edwards provides applicants with tips on how to catch a hiring manager’s eye, and dishes on the best way to follow up with a recruiter.

What makes a candidate stand out from the applicant pool at MKTG INC?

First and foremost, being thorough is key. Regardless of the position or level an applicant is seeking, he or she should complete the entire application, and submit a resume AND cover letter. There is nothing more disappointing than receiving a viable candidate’s resume and finding there are formatting issues or typos, or no cover letter. I think that cover letters are a great way to catch someone’s eye. You can really get a sense of a candidate’s voice and writing style in a way that a resume alone doesn’t communicate.

How should candidates follow up (or not)?

I personally am not a big fan of the follow up phone call or email. It’s important for candidates to know that with limited resources, it is almost impossible to respond to every phone call and email, especially when the candidate only wants confirmation that their resume was received. Our careers page sends an automatic confirmation email when a candidate’s resume or application is uploaded successfully. Believe me, when we receive a rock star resume, you will hear from us! The rule I follow is, only follow up after you have been contacted about a position. Simply submitting your resume does not warrant follow up.

How long does the process (from application to hiring) take, on average?

To be honest, it completely depends on the talent of the candidate pool. Generally, when we post a job, we want to pull the trigger as soon as we find the right person. On average, I’d say the process takes three to four weeks. Depending on the level of the job, there could be multiple rounds of interviews required before we can make a final decision.

What are some of the best and worst follow-up tactics you’ve seen?

One of the worst follow-up tactics is to email everyone at the executive level listed on the website. You would not believe how often this happens! To all of the job seekers out there, the only appropriate people to contact are the hiring manager, the recruiter, or – and ONLY if you don’t have any pertinent contact information – the HR lead. When you email everyone, it gives the impression that you’re either not willing to do the work to find the appropriate contact, or you lack good decision-making skills. Either way, it’s a bad place to start.

If a candidate does choose to follow up, I’d suggest to that candidate to be concise and sell yourself in no more than five sentences, highlighting your relevant experience and illustrate why it makes you a viable candidate. The number one thing a recruiter is looking for is relevant experience, so if you have that, you already have one foot in the door.

What advice can you offer WISE members who might be interested in applying for positions at your company (or elsewhere in the business)?

Network, network, network! Join groups like WISE to start making connections with other people who share your interests. Mine through sites like LinkedIn to see if you have connections to companies or positions you’re pursuing. If you are a recent college graduate, spend time developing your writing and communication skills, and learn about the industry you’re pursuing. Don’t be afraid to start with an entry-level role, because if the company you get in the door with is a good one, talent will be recognized and rewarded.

Marlena Edwards began her career in 2006 as an HR specialist at US Concepts, MKTG INC’s predecessor. She attended the State University of New York at Albany, received a paralegal certification from Long Island University, and completed her first year of law school before deciding to pursue a career in human resources, where she could interact more directly with people while still working in a law-related field. Edwards is a proud Brooklyn resident who is passionate about the arts and is an active philanthropist.

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MKTG INC Q&A with Tracy Perlman at the NFL

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Y-PERLMAN-master675Photo Credit: Richard Perry/The New York Times

MKTG INC was fortunate enough to sit down with Tracy Perlman, the Vice President of Entertainment Marketing and Promotions with the National Football League. She gave us some great insight into her years at the NFL, how the Halftime Show was born, and what it’s like to be a woman working in sports.  MKTG INC produced the NFL’s Legends Lounge, a VIP hospitality area, during this year’s Super Bowl.  Enjoy!

MKTG INC Q&A

Tracy Perlman (Vice President of Entertainment Marketing and Promotions, NFL)

Q: You’ve been at the NFL for close to 20 years. How’d you get started?

A: I interviewed during my senior year of college and started the day after college graduation, on my 22nd birthday! I was in the HR department as a floater, so I got to “float” to every department at the League and fill in when someone was out. Talk about learning on the fly! I worked for the Commissioner, in PR, in Football Ops, Events, you name it. After 10 months something that appealed to me was open: a programming coordinator for NFL Films. From there I took the opportunity to grow and develop in different positions. I have worked for the League, NFL Films, NFL Enterprises, NFL Properties and NFL Business Ventures on everything from NFL Sunday Ticket to producing events and TV programming to marketing and promotions to entertainment and players.

Q: What’s the cocktail-party description of your day-to-day job?

A: Working every day to develop content and opportunities to extend our game and our brand beyond the field. A great fan promotion like Together We Make Football; a general audience movie that drives fans to embrace our game; an amazing TV integration that shows moms interacting with our Player Health and Safety platforms. Working with the Legends of the game to create content for NFL Network and NFL.com to show their love for football and put the game in perspective for the fans. It is different every day and it allows me to take the game I love and highlight the passion through entertainment and the player/fan connection.

Q: The NFL has a reputation for seamlessly executing high-profile events, but in the marketing business, we know that sometimes things can go awry. Can you share an example that really tested your ability to stay cool?

A: There are so many I’m not sure where to start! Early in my career, we did a Super Bowl in Atlanta. We were hosting a party for 5,000 people at a place called Dean Estates, 30 minutes outside of the city. All of sudden it started to ice-storm. Atlanta was NOT ready for the weather. We were told to cancel the event because they had no salt for the roads so the busses couldn’t get there. So the day of the event, we moved the entire party into a hotel ballroom. We actually had the National Guard move all the décor. It was pretty crazy! But in the end, it looked like the event was supposed to be there the entire time.

Q: The NFL is as much an entertainment business as it is athletic. How do you strike a balance that keeps both casual and hardcore fans engaged?

A: We are storytellers, and there’s no better storyteller than NFL Films. We appeal to the casual fan who wants to know the personal story and the avid fan who wants to know about the competitiveness. We have offerings that cover everything and we are very careful not to be intrusive when it comes to the competition.  We offer avid fans access to things like the Draft and Combine, and we offer casual fans music, entertainment and unique opportunities.

Q: From Halftime Shows to the spread in Marie Claire, a lot is being done to attract and engage female fans. Why is it so important to have so many female fans taking an interest?

A: Female fans make up 45% of our fan base. They are as knowledgeable and as engaged as their male counterparts. Our ratings are up with female fans and we want to keep them interested. We also want them to use football as a connector for their families and friends. We want them be confident in their children playing the game and we want them to engage with our product. Going to them where they are is part of the strategy. Homegating products, women’s apparel, and nailgating with COVERGIRL are all hitting that demo.

Q: Warren Sapp, Jerry Rice, Emmitt Smith: all NFL legends who went on to compete on Dancing with the Stars. How has the evolution of football players into mainstream celebrities affected the NFL’s visibility?

A: It has helped elevate the profile with different demos and expose our players to a new fanbase. A few years ago Emmitt Smith and I were on the NFL Thanksgiving Day parade float and about 100 13-year-old cheerleaders were chanting his name. He had just won Dancing with the Stars. He leaned over and said, “Who would ever have thought that would be part of my fan base?!”

Q: The Super Bowl is coming to the New York area this year. What does it mean to have the world’s most high-profile game played on the country’s biggest stage?

A: It means the most media and entertainment programming coverage we’ve ever had. It means more events, more high-profile media placements, more sponsor activation. It means the standard is elevated and we will strive to deliver!

Q: MKTG INC is producing the Legends Lounge this year. ­What’s your take on that experience?

A: We want to reconnect our Legends to each other and the game of football. We want to celebrate their accomplishments and have them truly embrace the history.  It will be an amazing opportunity to see guys reconnect for the first time in years. It will create the standard for all Legends events moving forward.

Q: The NFL is a strong supporter of many charitable causes, from support of the military to cancer awareness. Is there one that rings particularly true to you?

A: Play60 and fighting childhood obesity is a cause that we can all stand behind. We want to make sure we communicate to our fans that you can have a truly balanced lifestyle. We want kids to go outside and play, and it doesn’t have to be football!

Q: You’ve worked for two different commissioners over an era that’s seen drastic changes to the game and the NFL experience. Can you think of one thing in particular that made the biggest impact?

A: They are very different leaders. Commissioner Tagliabue changed the game when he cut the original deal with the Union. He built a strong game that was very stable. I believe that Commissioner Goodell has strengthened the NFL brand and allowed us to stretch our goals and thinking. Innovation and challenging the status quo is the mantra. The focus on the fans and the players is extraordinary and has helped us continue to grow.

Q: Women like you, Val Ackerman, Marla Miller and Kim Ng are seen as trailblazers for women in this business. What’s the future for women in sports?

A: The sky is the limit. As the fan bases grow and the games grow beyond the field, women will help mold the messaging and the strategy to keep up with the technology and the fans.

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Bonfyre Ignites St. Louis Cardinals “Winter Warm-Up” Fan Fest

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Our friends at Bonfyre teamed up with the St. Louis Cardinals for their 2014 Cardinals CARE Winter Warm-Up. The three-day fan-centric event provided fun photo opportunities and introduced a new way for fans to connect with Cardinals players, coaches and media.

“We’re thrilled to be working with the St. Louis Cardinals to enhance the fan experience around such an amazing community event like the Winter Warm-Up,” said Mark Sawyier, CEO of Bonfyre. Fans had access to exclusive, behind-the-scenes photos, fun contests and more.

Our St. Louis-based technology partner complemented the Cardinals’ complete social media coverage of the three-day long event on official club platforms like Twitter (@Cardinals), Facebook (Facebook.com/Cardinals) and Instagram (@Cardinals). The experienced-based social platform allowed fans to share content while automatically creating a digital memory of the experience.

Read the original press release here: http://goo.gl/YadYxG

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