[PODCAST] Dan Rogers brings stories to life at the Grand Ole Opry

By Chuck Bryant, Relationary Marketing | 10.6.16

Dan Rogers remembers listening to the original Grand Ole Opry radio show with his parents, trying to guess how large the crowd was or debating whether or not there would be a surprise guest.

“The Opry was a place you could go to in your mind on a Saturday night when you’re 8 years old and stuck in the middle of Nowhere, Illinois.”

Now almost 30 years later, Rogers is the senior marketing director at the Grand Ole Opry, and will be the featured guest at Nashville American Marketing Association Power Lunch on October 13, discussing the impact of the Opry’s storytelling opportunities on marketing.  

Rogers started as a graduate intern right after college, and hasn’t looked back since. He said The Opry presents so many unique opportunities for stories and experiences.

“It’s a place where you have all these personalities coming together,” Rogers said, “You could have Carrie Underwood listening to a bluegrass artist, or Vince Gill watching a new performer who idolized him growing up.”  

The tradition of the Opry starts with the stories artists and fans share about their unique experiences with the radio show, concerts, or personalities.

“It’s about the music, but it’s also this very special relationship between the artists and fans.”

For an establishment seeped in tradition, Rogers is trying to expand the reach of their stories through organic uses of social media by artists and fans. In the old days the only method of delivering an experience was through radio or TV. Now stars and fans interact on social media, sharing stories in real time.


While the show might not be as prominent as it once was, the Opry is still an important staple to so many people. Rogers thinks back to watching so many up and coming artists who perform at the Opry for the first time, and invite all their family members from all over the world to see them.    

“You’re reminded of what an important part of America is right in our backyard in Nashville.”

Connect with Rogers on LinkedIn.

On October 13, Dan Rogers presents The Grand Ole Opry’s Secrets to Using Storytelling for Impact at the NAMA Power Lunch at City Winery. Register now.  

Editor’s Note: The NAMA Power Lunch podcast is a production of Relationary Marketing in partnership with the Nashville American Marketing Association. This episode was produced by Chuck Bryant and host Clark Buckner, edited and mixed by Jess Grommet, with music by Zachary D. Noblitt.


Chuck Bryant is co-founder and CEO of Relationary Marketing, a podcast production agency that creates broadcast-quality interviews for rich content marketing, event promotion, relationship nurturing and thought leadership.

Red Letter Day Shares What Women Want, What They Really, Really Want

By Melinda Hudgins Noblitt, Blog Editor | 8.28.16

If you weren’t one of the 150 people who attended Red Letter Day earlier this month, you missed quite an event!

NAMA President and owner and founder of Brand Wise, Jamie Dunham, along with her impressive lineup of speakers, provided research and anecdotes that proved both informative and eye-opening.

2016 Red Letter Day

Did you know 100 million women control 85 percent of all consumer purchases? It’s called the Lipstick Economy. And while some companies have figured that out — like Dove and Organic Valley — others are missing the mark big time. *Cough, BIC, Cough*

Don’t take my word for it; have a look at what industry leaders had to say about the event:

Claire Crowell penned a piece in The Tennessean for 12th & Broad, sharing her 5 things I learned at Red Letter Day.

Fellow NAMA Board Member, Knight Stivender, shared her thoughts in her blog post, Red Letter Day: A Marketing Conference Peggy and Joan Would Have Appreciated.

Emily Tucker, director of marketing for Gigi’s Cupcakes who spoke at Red Letter Day, also wrote a guest blog for Nashville Business Journal, titled The state of marketing to women and why it’s important.

Be sure to check out photos from the event published by Nashville Business Journal and this pre-event interview with Jamie Dunham by Nashville Post. 

Oh, and let’s not forget Twitter.

And if you’re still not convinced that it’s time to start paying attention to what women want, there are always cold, hard facts: 2016 Red Letter Day Research – Brand Wise.

[PODCAST] Ike Pigott Presents the Case for Brand Journalism at NAMA September Power Lunch

By Kirk Bado, Guest Blogger | 8.27.16

A website for a power company does not immediately conjure images of outstanding marketing content.  

But Ike Pigott is working to alter that perception.   

Pigott is a communications strategists at Alabama Power, and he is changing the way corporations handle their news. Since 2008, he has pivoted the utility company away from simply using its website as a spot to host press releases, to now becoming a leader in the burgeoning field of brand journalism.

“Content marketing, is one of the more direct and valuable ways to reach people with a message in today’s climate… Brand journalism is a subset in content marketing,” he said.

Pigott uses the Alabama Power platform to build an audience not just focused on updates from the company, but  a mix of news and content curation for the State of Alabama. He runs the website like a traditional news outlet, telling stories that fit the brand of Alabama, instead of focusing exclusively on reiterating internal company news      

“You can’t do enough talking about yourself and develop an audience to it,” Pigott said.

Since May last year, he has focused efforts on generating content that might not directly relate to Alabama Power, but instead building an audience based on the content of their more community driven news stories.

Ike Pigott

“You’re not graded on intent, you’re graded on effectiveness,” he explained.

And the content has been very effective. After the shift, the site is getting more than 100,000 visits a month, which might not rival traditional news sites, but dwarfs other corporate news publications. By taking a more traditional news publication approach to content advertising, Alabama Power is drawing the attention of local newspapers and even Google News aggregates. Traditional media outlets are now lifting stories from his site to run them in their publications.

Pigott says he is ecstatic with the content being pushed by other outlets; to him, it is not about getting the most page views or traffic. Because Alabama Power is a public utility, his ultimate employer is the State of Alabama. The goal is marketing the larger message of Alabama to young people looking for jobs.

“They don’t have to go to Austin or Boston or Silicon Valley to have a great career, you can do it here,” he explained. “If we can tell the type of stories that reinforce that, then that’s a win for us.”

Pigott garnered this new audience by breaking down the internal silos of Alabama Power’s marketing, advertising, and design components. He’s streamlined all departments to generate content for their brand journalism. Now the company can quickly respond to the trends of its growing audience, and meet them where they are.   

“If you’re able to make a shift in a timely fashion, you are in a great position to meet them where they are going to be,” he said. “That’s the process that is going to take you – and your organization – to where you need to be.”  

Connect with Pigott on Twitter.

NAMA Sept Power Lunch

On September 8, Ike Pigott presents The Case for Brand Journalism at the NAMA Power Lunch at City Winery. Register now.  

Editor’s Note: The NAMA Power Lunch podcast is a production of Relationary Marketing in partnership with the Nashville American Marketing Association. This episode was produced by Chuck Bryant and host Clark Buckner, with editing support from Jess Grommet and music by Zachary D. Noblitt.


Kirk Bado is a student and freelance writer at Belmont University and storyteller for Relationary Marketing, a podcast agency that produces broadcast-quality interviews to create engaging strategic content and nurture high-value relationships.

Incoming NAMA President: Get Ready to Have Some Fun!

By Jamie Dunham, NAMA President | 7.24.16

Happy New Year, NAMA!

It seems a little funny to say, “Happy New Year,” but for the Nashville Chapter of the American Marketing Association (NAMA), it’s a New Year, and our talented new board has been busy with plans for new NAMA year 2016-2017.

www.public-domain-image.com (public domain image)

So in the spirit of the season, let’s throw some confetti and thank last year’s leaders for a great foundation on which to grow. And let’s countdown this New Year with some new goals and initiatives – because that’s what marketers do.

Here are some of the changes in our new year:

New Venue for Our Power Lunches
That’s right, we are moving our lunch meetings to the fantastic City Winery venue that will well accommodate our speakers and programming with state-of-the-art staging and audio-visual.

And we will have discounts for Lyft to get us there in style.

Our Hospitality Chair Teresa Faust is working with her group to get us ready for our first Thursday Power Lunch on Sept. 8. And our programming committee led by Ann Howard is planning smart insightful speakers.

New sponsor Relationary Marketing will create podcasts with our speakers to allow us to know them better.

What’s your jam? Ours is The One Hitters, a fun One Hit Wonders Band, where NAMA member Peter Cronin and his band mates rock out.

2016 NAMA JAMA Graphic

So “Baby Come Back” to our NAMA JAMA Mixer on Aug. 9 at Stagepost. You like it “More Today than Yesterday,” and you’ll be “Fallin’ in Love” with NAMA and your new friends.

Mixing Up Our Mixers
After NAMA JAMA, we’ll be hitting the road for our mixers, exploring offices of some of the top marketing groups in town and visiting some interesting businesses in town.

A big thanks goes to Lynn Bennett’s membership team and the Grand Mixer Bill Selph for getting us out on the town.

Also, look for impromptu invitations to pop-up events for drinks in a popular watering hole.

Serious about SIGs
President-Elect Lori Whitbey and the SIG chairs are working on new SIG events for B2B, Healthcare, Non-Profits, Marketing Technology, Research and Collegiate Relations.

Get to know our SIG Chairs – B2B’s Paula Milam, Healthcare’s Andrea Gillotte, Non-Profits’ Bob Duthie, Marketing Technology’s Knight Stivender, Research’s Sheila King and Collegiate Relations James Scherer and mark your calendar for your favorite group.

We will also be extending the invitation to members interested in SIG start-up events in new categories like entertainment.

Free Member Events
Sometimes we just like to roll up of sleeves and learn some new things.  Sponsorship’s chair Austin Harrison is working with our sponsors on some casual member-free events to allow us to learn some new skills. Stay tuned.

Our Sponsors are leading the way in making our year successful. We thank each of them for their contributions.

And our treasurers Jason Hoard and Jeff Peden are keeping us fiscally responsible. Oh, and they love a good party.

Our historian Julie McReynolds is providing continuity, and our secretary Kurt Kirton is working on updates to our Job Board.

Our Communications team, led by Melinda Hudgins Noblitt and our Social Media team chaired by Elizabeth Duffey, will make sure you are informed with new blogs, a newsletter, website updates, and social media. Mark your calendars!

And our Volunteer team chaired by Tim Earnhardt will make sure you find a place to plug in.

Our goals are pretty simple: this year is about making long-lasting marketing friends, learning some audacious new skills, and having a little fun.


Please take the time to make new friends at NAMA. Instead of just coming to “network,” wouldn’t it be great if you got involved, made lasting relationships, learned some new skills, and found great business partners?!

That’s something to toast about! Happy New Year, NAMA!



Jamie Dunham is 2016-2017 President of Nashville AMA. She is founder and president of Brand Wise, a brand strategy firm with a focus on building culturally relevant brands. She authors the popular blog Lipstick Economy offering perspectives on marketing to women. Brand Wise is hosting Red Letter Day, a one-day marketing to women event on August 5. 

5 Enticingly Healthy Brand Bites

By Melinda Scruggs Gales, Guest Blogger | 7.18.16

There’s lots to love about Nashville. Most of all, we like the many ways to expand your mind, not just your waistline (check out Nashville’s culinary kudos here).

You can’t be everywhere, so we’re serving up nourishment from five healthcare industry events you may have missed. On our menu: Meat & Three, plus Sweet Ice Tea.


Fried Chicken
Health:Further Quarterly (5/10)

Focus on Interoperability with Jumpstart Foundry, Vanderbilt University, Health System Partnerships, Octovis, Virsys12, and more. To transform healthcare, focus on each patient (customer) as an individual.

We need faster and more affordable ways to connect and use the vast field of existing data in medical equipment, Electronic Health Records (EHR), DNA, insurance claims and more. Accessibility meeting clear standards in a single source of protected digital truth – this is true interoperability.

Quote of the day: “Government sets the floor (through policy), not the bar (our processes) – aim higher.” – Anita Summarth/@ClinovationsGov

Take-a-way: If you’re only striving to achieve compliance, you’ll miss the opportunity to lead.


Green Beans
American Marketing Association (Nashville – #NAMA) Healthcare Special Interest Group (5/10)

Searching for the Elusive ROI with Lewis Communications, Alliance Oncology, LifePoint Health and The Tennessean. With healthcare payments shifting from volume to value, it’s critical to clearly identify what needs to be measured before you start tracking data or you’ll end up with numbers, not data, for decisions.

Quote of the day: “Patients (customers) arrive at your door daily for a number of reasons, be sure you ask them why (gather qualitative or ‘unstructured’ data) and combine that with standardized check boxes (quantitative or ‘structured’).” –Susan Polier, Alliance Oncology

Take-a-way: Don’t ever replace real customer conversation with surveys. The combination will provide a better picture and move you faster to strong ROI.


Mac & Cheese
Werkshop DIG Seminar (5/24)

How Data Science is Revolutionizing the Art of Marketing with Jim Alcott, Alcott Marketing Science. Most brands have a “persona” in mind when they’re selling, but rarely look at hard data to analyze actual shoppers and their “propensity to purchase.”

When the Shark Tank investor asks for your customer acquisition cost, will you have a researched number or a guess?

Quote of the day: “Easier customer acquisition is not always indicative of true customer value.” – Jim Alcott, Alcott Marketing Science

Take-a-way: Great marketing is a delicious mix of art and science – don’t skimp on either.


Okra (fried of course)
Mental Health Marketing Conference (May 12-13)

Directing Individuals to Treatment Through Modern Marketing with Lipscomb University, Foundations Recovery Networks, Insight Counseling Centers, Centerstone, and more. This impressive debut event featured quality speakers highlighting the mental healthcare market, now being openly courted as a result of the Affordable Care Act.

All industries can learn how disruption opens doors for opportunity by watching this revolution.

Quote of the 2 days: “We must stop viewing mental health as separate from medical health” – Paul Gionfriddo (via Kriste Goad, Revive).

Take-a-way: Stop looking at a slice of your customer persona in relation to your offer – see them as whole people with many needs in order to build relationships, not a sales number.


Sweet Ice Tea
Salon @615 Event (5/18)

Steve Case, author, The Third Wave, with Stuart McWhorter and John Ingram presented by the Nashville Public Library Foundation. Sometimes you have to check the view from 50,000 feet (at least) and look at history in order to be visionary about the future.

Understanding how technology caused culture change in waves is critical: Wave 1 – disruption of communication — Wave 2 – disruption of commerce — Wave 3 – disruption of business and everyday life.

Quote of the day: “This new generation will drive change motivated by both profit and purpose.” – Steve Case.

Take-a-way: To be truly successful, stay curious about what is possible and what will benefit others.
Thanks for taking the time to share a digital meal with us. If you’re a successful brand wanting to be heard above the noise, come talk to us. Reach out at elevate@galesnetwork.com

This post originally appeared on Gales Network Blog.

Melinda Scruggs Gales is Chief Brand Strategist for Nashville-based brand consultancy GALES NETWORK, a proven catalyst for brand clarity, strategy and effective action for clients in healthcare, entertainment, and technology.

Key Takeaways From ‘The Science of Marketing’ Sessions

By Knight Stivender, Guest Blogger | 5.31.16

Marketing and advertising folks are increasingly called upon to prove an ROI on our craft, which is why we were delighted when Tim Earnhart of Werkshop Branding asked Alcott Marketing Science CEO Jim Alcott to speak on the science of marketing at Werkshop’s DIG Seminar Series event.

The topic: How to use statistics, analytics, and data to help clients and creative agencies refine marketing strategy and measure campaign performance.

For those who couldn’t make it to the DIG event – especially our awesome clients in Portland, Ore., and across the country who’ve helped us create a fantastic body of analytics and data insights work – here are some key takeaways:

1. “Half my advertising is wasted. I just don’t know which half.” Still true?

John Wanamaker, whose Philadelphia and New York department stores were print advertising pioneers in the 1880s, coined this well-known adage in our industry. But while that may have been true in 1880, it’s not so much in 2016. Most of us are familiar with metrics used in measuring the effectiveness of the campaigns we’re running – particularly in a digital environment.

But can we predict in advance of the campaign – before we spend any money on it – what is likely to be most effective? Yes! If we use science to identify the right audience, we can predict with statistical accuracy whether we’re directing our advertising campaign to people who have the propensity to buy. We’re not talking about people who live in a particularly desirable zip code or census tract among other people who seem to look like people we think are our buyers. We’re talking about individual people who actually share hundreds of statistically significant, rank-ordered attributes of the very same variables of those we can prove are our customers. It’s math, and it’s what analytics teams do for creative teams every day.



2. What if we want a different kind of customer than the ones we currently have? As Jim pointed out in his seminars this week, we get this question quite regularly – particularly from clients who are working hard to diversify their customer base. When marketing analysts mine customer data to understand existing customers, they’re using that as a baseline to generate opportunities for future growth. What if you want your growth to come in audiences different from where it’s been in the past? The answer is to do something different. Consider a new product or service line. If you’ve already done that, you either need to market to them differently or reconsider them as viable prospects.

3. The WHERE is as important as the WHO. Let data – rather than conventional wisdom – reveal the best trade areas. When considering location-based decisions, science-minded marketers and consultants will advise clients to consider a number of variables, including population density, demographic traits, traffic patterns, commercial development and density, etc. An overly generalized trade area chosen by drawing a 3-mile or 5-mile ring around a location is not precise enough.

Trade area polygons

The map above shows trade area polygons drawn around three client stores (trade areas are the black shapes and the stores are the red dots). Notice how much variance is in the polygons.

Hollywood Reporter

3. Know the CPA. Jim loves Shark Tank, and even though he agrees that Mr. Wonderful is kind of a jerk, he respects that he often asks contenders about the CPA – cost per acquisition (or CPO – cost per order). If you don’t collect enough data, it’s sometimes a challenge to know the lifetime value of a customer when customers drop in and out and vary on how much they spend and what they purchase. But it should always be possible to answer the question of CPA. How much are you spending to acquire a new customer? Knowing the answer to that will help you determine your marketing and advertising spends, and will keep you focused on selecting the right product lines and services when you begin to launch new ones. Knowing the CPA/CPO up front is another way to use science when making marketing decisions, and it will ensure a good return.

4. What’s the ultimate success metric? The key to measuring performance is you have to track the right KPIs. Jim gave a great example of this at the sessions this week. We tested an email campaign wherein we used two different subject lines with two different “friendly from” senders to see which combination would have the highest open rate. “You’re invited from Sue Rogers” got the best open rate. People were curious who Sue Rogers was, and why she was inviting them to something, so they felt compelled to open the email.

But when they opened the email and saw that it was a daycare center asking them to RSVP to tour a facility, they felt tricked. The click rate on the invitation RSVP was actually down 25% on that “winning” open rate combination. And the rate of those RSVP’ing for center tours was even lower.


The takeaway on that particular example: Be transparent and clear in addition to friendly and welcoming.
Editor’s Note: This post originally appeared on Alcott Marketing Science’s Blog, Marketing Matters.



Mental Health Marketing Conference Sparks the Conversation

By Ryan Stout, Guest Blogger | 5.24.16

The inaugural Mental Health Marketing Conference was held recently at Lipscomb University, and the two-day event was packed with local and national marketing professionals who are leading the charge on mental health marketing. Below is a brief recap of the event.

The Man Behind the Curtain

It’s impossible to start this recap without first mentioning the work of Austin Harrison.

If you don’t know Austin (is that possible?), he is the Relationship Director at Identity Visuals, one of the leading video and motion graphic companies in the Southeast.

Austin was the only reason this event happened. He convinced the speakers to speak, he secured the venue, he signed on the sponsors, he made sure we had snacks and coffee.

He was the conference.

The first day started with a beautiful and moving keynote by Austin. The passion he has for this event is palpable and contagious.

The truth is, putting on a conference is hard work. Especially the first one. You need passion to pull it off, and Austin clearly has it.

I think I can speak for all in attendance when I say Austin did a marvelous job as a first time conference organizer. Way to go!


“Your web presence has to be as good as your clinical product” – Lee Pepper, Foundation Recovery Network

One of the main themes over the course of the conference was creating digital experiences (websites, videos, campaigns, etc.) for healthcare initiatives that are as sophisticated as what all leading brands have, regardless of industry.

Healthcare is leading the way in several areas, but design, UX/UI, marketing and digital are not typically where.

A bad experience online can lead to missed opportunities.

This was a leading topic in many of the talks and discussions over the two days, and Lee Pepper of Foundations Recovery Network hit the nail on the head with his quote above.


Users expect a seamless experience from all brands, healthcare or otherwise. If we fail to deliver on this we could miss the chance to help someone.

To surprise and delight is not just for enterprise companies with big budgets. It’s for all companies.

“The whole purpose of marketing now is to start and build a dialogue” – Jerry Youngblutt, Boyden + Youngblutt

As a Partner at Astute Communications, a marketing agency that also serves several healthcare clients, I found Jerry’s comments to be especially insightful.

Content in healthcare marketing is an especially tricky subject to navigate. Not only must we build authority and trust, but there are also regulations (HIPAA/PHI) that cannot be ignored.

Often, creating content for healthcare companies can be especially taxing. The stakes are higher than in most other industries.

Jerry’s recommendation to start a dialogue, to make it a conversation, is a great reminder to speak to healthcare consumers as people, not just patients. Jerry was a wealth of insight and sage advice, drawing on years of healthcare marketing experience to help paint of picture of what successful healthcare marketing looks like.

“Marketing and PR need to be integrated” – Kriste Goad, Revive Health


The last Keynote of the MHM Conference was from Kriste Goad of Revive Health. Her presentation about combining Marketing and PR – a holistic approach to healthcare marketing – was a great way to cap the event.

With Revive being a leader in that space, she was able to really paint a clear picture of what this approach looks like, and what success looks like as well. By marrying PR and Marketing, Healthcare Marketing can reach and serve more people. Integration of these two departments is vital.

Until Next Year…

In its first year, the conference was able to bring together the Nashville Mental Health Marketing community in a new and exciting fashion. Marketing agencies, healthcare companies, non-profits and many more were able to add their unique perspective to this important topic, to educate and motivate. Until next year…

Power Lunch Recap: Listen, Don’t Monitor

By Melinda Hudgins Noblitt | 5.12.16

“We as brands, we as marketers are only scratching the surface,” Jason Falls said during his presentation at NAMA’s final Power Lunch of the programming year.

He was there to discuss Social Listening, which he explained, is very different from Social Monitoring.

Given that Falls is a leading digital strategist, author, speaker and thinker in the digital and social media marketing industry, we’re inclined to believe him.


“With Social Monitoring, you’re reacting to what people say. Social Listening is proactive; ask a question and then listen to answers that will help (your) brand,” he continued.

“We assume we know. We don’t. Why be a good guesser if you don’t have to? If you can use data, then you have that data to back up your decisions.”

Rarely do companies have dollars set aside for market research. Sure, there might be budget allocations every five years or so, but marketers need current data to understand their audience.

“Decisions need to be fueled by insights,” Falls says.

Hello, Facebook and Twitter.

“Social media changes the game,” he said. “We now have millions of conversations happening online. And a million more happening right now. And right now.”

Now, let’s use those conversations to make our products better.

Falls gave the example of Hanz Toys, an educational toy company that utilized Social Listening to determine what was missing from the modern day toy industry. (It may very well be attention span that is missing. With the evolution of technology, more children are focused on digital rather than hands-on entertainment.)

So the company “listened in” on social conversations about children’s toys taking place in mommy groups and similar social media pages. Ultimately, the company learned that educational toys were missing from the marketplace. Then it got to work filling that gap.

decisions need to be fueled by insights.

By utilizing Social Listening to conduct research, Hanz Toys saved not only on research expenses, but also on design costs.

Other examples included Vespa, Café Press, and Kettle Brand Potato Chips – all of which used a form of Social Listening to better understand their consumers, thus improving their brands.

What’s in your toolbox?

In order to sift through the mounds of social media dialogue, Falls recommended a variety of tools (and full disclosure, some are his clients): NetBase, Infegy, SproutSocial, Klear.

The list goes on, so do your homework to determine which is best for your company, then get to work.

“Once the tool is in place, you need time to look into it,” Falls said.

“Delve into it without any questions in mind, then find out why. Do it with an open mind and a real curiosity. Dive into these conversations proactively and seek answers to questions.”

He also advises marketers to ask, “Why?” five times. Work backward to solve a problem.


Falls offers more insight in his post, “Social Listening Can Inform Your Marketing Creative.”

While Power Lunches are on hold until late-summer, there are still plenty of events on the calendar!

3 Reasons You Should Absolutely, Positively Attend Our Upcoming Power Lunch

By Melinda Hudgins Noblitt, NAMA Blog Editor | 4.21.16

Kick off your Cinco de Mayo celebration with a NAMA Power Lunch!

No, seriously. Our May 5 Power Lunch is going to be stellar for several reasons, and not because your night is sure to end with El Jimador Añejo and Dos Equis.

NAMA May 5 Power Luncheon Graphic

  1. Jason Falls
    Need we say more?This guy’s resume is impressive.Not only is he a leading digital strategist, author, speaker (obviously), and thinker in the digital and social media marketing industries, but he’s worked with fabulous brands like General Motors, Maker’s Mark, AT&T, Fireball Whisky, and CafePress. #careergoals, anyone?

    You may know Jason as the founder of SocialMediaExplorer.com. (Cue the “Ohhhs”)

    Then there are his two books: No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No Hype Guide to Social Media Marketing and The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing.

    You’re guaranteed one helluva presentation with book titles like these!

  1. Social Listening vs. Social Monitoring
    How often have you listened – and I mean really listened – to what your social media followers are saying?“Social Monitoring is, to me, a reactive activity,” Jason says.“Social Listening is different. When you listen, you listen with the intent of learning, changing behavior, changing responses. It’s proactive, where you intentionally go and listen to discover insight.”

    It’s a deeper level of understanding your consumer.

    “Social Listening is really market research using social conversations,” he continues.

    Jason says there are three primary ways that folks utilize market research: Product Development, Information about User Experience, and Content and Marketing Messaging.

    “I’ll talk about those three and use examples of how companies are using social listening to accomplish those things for far less money.”

    NAMA May 5 Power Lunch Quote Graphic

  1. NAMA’s Final Power Lunch (sort of)
    This is the last Power Lunch of the NAMA year, which runs July-June, so the next opportunity to hear an awesome speaker will be late-summer (because, let’s face it, NAMA speakers are nothing short of fantastic).Go ahead, move your cursor here and register!And if you’re feeling super ambitious, go ahead and register for all of our May events.

Power Lunch Recap: Reboot Your Brand Like a Pro

By Katie Soltas, NAMA Blogger | 4.20.16

From a bracket-busting basketball season to the launch of a mandatory networking class, Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) has undergone a major rebranding over the past year.

Dr. David Urban, dean of MTSU’s Jennings A. Jones College of Business, delivered an engaging speech to a captivated audience during a recent NAMA Power Luncheon about the university’s rebranding process and ensuing success.

Urban began his presentation by emphasizing the importance of education and illustrated the reasons he chose to dedicate his life to the cause.

But, like all businesses, educational institutions – MTSU’s Jones College included – need to reboot their brand.

“What used to pass in higher education no longer satisfies millennials,” Urban said. “We are adjusting to the new wants of students with more engagement.”

4-15-16 Urban Quote Graphic

He explained how marketing is not just an external function, but must be encompassed by the entire organization internally from top to bottom in order to reach a successful rebranding.

This, he says, is in addition to “walking the talk,” or following through on the university’s promises to students to prepare them for the real world.

Adopting an entrepreneurial mindset, according to Urban, is key to rebranding an organization.

The mindsets, “We’ve always done it this way,” or “We’ve been doing it for so long I don’t know why we do it,” are particularly perilous paths to travel.


On the contrary, starting from scratch by questioning, observing, experimenting, and networking with individuals from diverse backgrounds proved beneficial in the Jones College’s rebranding efforts.

Other roadblocks to effective organizational rebranding projects include a misunderstanding of the need, bureaucratic issues, and misalignment of management processes and outcomes.

To overcome these roadblocks, organizations must focus on the brand truths: what you are, what you deliver, and what you stand for.

In the case of MTSU’s Jones College, the school prides itself on being a “student success business school” with an emphasis on retention, graduation, and post-graduation job placement. Nearly 80 percent of Jones College alumni live in Greater Nashville and contribute to the economy – a testament to the school’s promise, according to Urban.

Reiterating the need for a product that mirrors the brand’s promise, the Jones College this past year added the Dale Carnegie human relations seminar that prepares students for the real world by teaching them networking and other applicable skills to market their individual brands.

4-15-16 AIDI Graphic

The course is now a graduation requirement, and so far has received an overwhelmingly positive response from students, who reported takeaways of real-world applicability, increased confidence, improved self-evaluation, increased accountability, and enthusiasm.

Marketing the new brand to an external audience falls on the basic advertising acronym and principle we all learned at our own alma maters: AIDA – creating attention, interest, desire, and action in all of our campaigns.

Last, but not least, Urban underscored the need for brand advocates, or ambassadors, to be drivers and change agents for the organization.


NAMA will host its next Power Lunch on May 5. Click here for details and to register.