Volunteer Spotlight: Emily Fay


Emily Fay
Marketing Manager, Remar, Inc.
Secretary (2015)
Board Member at Large (2012-2013)
Collegiate Relation Chair (2010-2012)

What prompted you to join NAMA?
I moved to Nashville in 2007 on a whim, I had no job, just my best friend from 3rd grade. As a member of the University of Nebraska – Lincoln AMA chapter I knew, if I wanted to meet the top marketers in town I needed to attend NAMA’s events.

You served on NAMA’s Board for several years. Why did you decide to volunteer?
I wasn’t really looking for more activities to get involved in when I was asked to help with the Collegiate Relations committee. However, I am a strong believer in the more you put into an organization the more you get out of it.

I also felt that having been a member of a collegiate chapter in the past, gave me some insight into what students would need and want from our chapter.

What was your proudest moment in your role as Collegiate Relations Chair?
That is easy! Dreaming up and executing the Marketing the Marketer event.

This event gave students the opportunity to connect with Marketers and HR professionals. They got to ask questions about everything from what it is like to work in Marketing to what to expect in an interview.

The first year we did this, I was expecting that maybe 15-20 students would be there, but we sold out of tickets and 40 students showed up!

How has NAMA impacted you professionally?
I don’t know where my career would be without NAMA. I have found both of my marketing positions in Nashville through this organization. The first role was an Account Manager at Allegiant Direct, Inc., and that job found me through the NAMA job board. The second role, my current position at Remar, was found through a NAMA Mixer.

What differentiates NAMA from other groups?
NAMA has a good mix of marketing folks, that are excited to learn from each other.

This is organization is fantastic for networking. The best part is that if your networking skill level doesn’t matter. If you are new to it, someone will guide you along. If networking is your expertise, there is always someone new and interesting to meet at NAMA.

Can you share a memorable experience from your career thus far?
It is hard for me to pin point just one experience. There are highlights from every marketing role I have had. The one that is sticking out to me right now hasn’t happened yet. But, in a couple weeks the non-profit organization I started, Nashville Huskers, will host its 100th football watch party.

Why would you encourage others to join and volunteer with NAMA?
I said this before, but the more you put into NAMA the more you get out of it, and in order to volunteer with NAMA, you need to be a member.

When you volunteer with NAMA you make connections with incredible marketers, and they can actually see the quality of your work. For me, when it came to finding a job, the recommendation from someone who I had volunteered with was a factor in getting the job I have today.

NAMA Member Brings Husker Fans Together for a Kick-off with a Cause

By Katie Soltas, NAMA Blogger | 10.30.16

Remar, Inc.’s marketing manager and longtime NAMA member, Emily Fay, simply wanted to bond with a few Nebraska Cornhusker fans during football season without leaving her new home of Nashville.

What she started became more than a small group of game day buddies, but a movement that has generated thousands of dollars in college scholarships for Nashvillians and has pumped nearly $240,000 into Music City’s economy through food and beverage sales.


Fay moved to Nashville in 2007 from Nebraska. In 2009, she performed digital research and recruiting on Facebook and LinkedIn, inviting Husker alumni to watch the football season opener at what was formerly Closing Bell on Demonbreun Hill. Twenty people confirmed their attendance, but 80 fans showed up to the first game – greatly exceeding Fay’s expectations.

Since then, the “Nashville Huskers” migrated to several locations in the city until they landed a permanent home, the Tin Roof 2 in Cool Springs, where they have met the past four seasons.


More than 150 fans gather each weekend, and Fay has kept detailed records showing the group’s annual financial impact for the establishments where they congregate. Although it can be challenging for restaurants to meet the needs of the large group, the herd brings in up to $40,000 in revenue each football season.

But for Fay, watching the games wasn’t enough.

Through merchandise sales and other means, she led the group in raising $18,000 over the past five years for the University of Nebraska Legends scholarship that goes to three deserving Middle Tennessee college applicants every year.

College football brings the Nashville Huskers together, but the professional networking and relationship-building opportunities is what keeps the group alive and thriving.


During our interview, Fay rattles off several long-lost relatives and friends that found each other through the group, including her mother and a childhood friend who rekindled their friendship. Two Husker alumni fell in love (let’s assume over beer and wings) during a season and are now married. One Nashville Husker’s friends from Purdue came every year when their team played Nebraska. Last year, he tragically passed away from cancer and his friends still came to Nashville during the Purdue game to honor him.

“Everyone in the group knows each other now, and we are all connected somehow,” said Fay, who is looking forward to their 100th watch party on Nov. 19. “I never imagined it would turn into a true community.”

[PODCAST] Finding your personal value with Jennifer Way

By Chuck Bryant, Relationary Marketing | 10.27.16

Jennifer Way wants to help make marketers their own biggest advocates by revealing their personal value.

“Your resume should be the Cliff Notes of your values, not a job description,” Way said.

Way is a consultant and president of Way Solutions. Her company has worked with Disney, Amazon, and Honda to help get the most out of their employees. She’ll be helping guests unlock the power of their personal value at NAMA’s Power Lunch on Thursday, Nov. 3.

“Unleashing the power of your personal value is about learning how to identify the key factors that will get you the recognition and rewards you need,” Way said. “What employer doesn’t want more value from an employee?”

Way said that finding personal value is not about expanding any more effort, but instead is about understanding dynamics in your work system.

People in the workplace don’t learn how to be personal advocates on their own. Instead they learn slowly from other’s mistakes, when really they need to look at themselves objectively and put themselves in the opposite role, according to Way. This is where marketers have a unique advantage.  

“They understand exactly how to look at themselves objectively in a business-to-business situation, but feel awkward turning that marketing eye on themselves.”

Connect with Way on LinkedIn.

On Nov. 3, Jennifer Way presents Unlock the Power of Your Value 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.

The Cheers Effect

By Chelsea Kallman, NAMA Blogger | 10.25. 16

Sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name.

If the Cheers television show theme song starts playing in your head then we’re on the right track. Not only is this an incredible TV show, but it’s also a great example of why knowing your customers is the best solution for growing your business.

Whether you company lends itself to a daily customer or even a yearly interaction, you can glean wisdom from the beloved TV show.

Customers who feel known and appreciated are going to come back time and time again.

I know sales representatives at clothing stores are paid to tell me I look great in a dress, but when they say it in a way that I believe it, you better believe I’m coming back again – not just for another great outfit, but for the affirmation and experience of feeling like a superstar.

Take a second and think about the opposite.

When you go into a coffee shop and you’re not greeted – you’re immediately put off. You feel like you’re not cool enough for the space or that you don’t know enough to order from their menu. How likely are you to go back? Zero percent.

Business Grow has an article about turning online influence into offline results, and in it Mark Schaefer makes the point that “relationships with companies are formed through interactions over time.”

Your business will grow when people you know are talking about it and when your regular customers feel known, appreciated, and like they’re a part of something.

In short, The Cheers Effect.

To be effective in this means you have to actually care.

One of the phrases Schaefer uses is being “authentically kind.” You have to be willing to start the conversation and emotionally invest with whomever you’re trying to influence. This looks like being helpful even when you don’t think you’ll get something in return. It means being trustworthy. He says small interactions like these lead to larger engagements.


Ask yourself this: Why do you go to the same bar over and over again? Maybe you like the food. Maybe the prices are great. But maybe at the end of the day it’s because you’re know,n and you can go in and be taken care of by someone who remembers your name, your favorite drink, and maybe even that you like two sides of blue cheese dressing with your french fries.

I found my Cheers when I started regularly going to a local barbeque restaurant. I would sit at the bar each time, and I quickly realized I kept getting the same bartender. He didn’t talk too much. And really, he didn’t need to. But he would make small talk about music, what was on TV, or just ask me what I was up to that day.

Fast forward several months. Now he is my favorite bartender in Nashville. All the small talk led to more conversation, and now he’s a part of my friend group. He has since gotten a new job, and you know how often I go to that BBQ restaurant now? Maybe once since he has left. Instead I go to the new bar where he works.

Having employees who are willing to make connections with your customers will, in turn, make your business so much more money.

Working in the coffee business, I get regulars who come in every single day.


It’s hard not to get to know someone when you see them five days a week. Many of these regulars have made such personal connections with the staff that they end up getting hired when they’re in need of a job, or they’re invited to staff bonfires at our houses. We get beers with them after work.

This concept doesn’t just apply to the hospitality industry though. I believe The Cheers Effect applies to every type of business. This goes back to our blog post about how being nice is always the best option.

At the end of the day, it’s about making a personal connection.

Read this article about how one car dealership did this extremely well. They were genuine, friendly, and they just acted like themselves. When you’re a car dealer, you’re not going to get repeat customers daily, but the shop gave its customers roadtrip inspiration and even great food suggestions. They were about more than just cars.

When you put time and energy into making your customers feel appreciated, it shows. It’s worth the work because at the end of the day, you’ll have an incredible reputation and a committed customer base. These two attributes lead to word-of-mouth marketing that is invaluable to any business.

Eventually enough people start talking, and it draws a crowd.

Because sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name and they’re always glad you came. You wanna go where you can see people are all the same. You wanna go where everybody knows your name.

Using Yelp to Your Advantage – How Being Nice Really Does Make a Difference

By Chelsea Kallman, NAMA Blogger | 10.10.16

Working in hospitality you can experience a lot of negative Yelping.

The platform has become a place where anyone can be a critic and an expert on food, drink, and experience. Ask anyone who works in the service industry their thoughts on Yelp, and it’s usually described as a toxic environment.

Watch Real Chefs Read Bad Yelp Reviews.

This video makes light of harsh feedback. But it also shines a light on just how toxic these reviews can be.

Even though there are downsides to Yelp there’s still a way you can use it to your advantage.


The Believer, an American literary magazine started in the early 2000s by Dave Eggers, best known for A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius and writing the screenplay for Where the Wild Things Are, doesn’t allow writers to talk about things they don’t like.

The idea behind The Believer is to focus on the inherent good.

“Modest though the magazines are in scale and appearance, there is nonetheless something stirringly immodest – something ‘authentic and delirious,’ as e.e. cummings once wrote – about what they are trying to do, which is to organize a generational struggle against laziness and cynicism, to raise once again the banners of creative enthusiasm and intellectual engagement,” A.O. Scott wrote in a 2005 New York Times article.

Read the entire article here.

This is the heart needed behind Yelp. It needs to be a platform where users talk about what excites them, instead of nitpicking every experience.


Changing this mindset starts with you; you can’t control what others do or think, but you can control how you respond.

But, how?

Jay Baer, author of Hug Your Haters, a book teaching how to embrace complaints and keep customers, also wrote a blog post for Buffer App on the same topic. He came up with an acrostic called FEARS.

10-9-16-nama-yelp-blog-post-photoPhoto source:  Buffer App

Embracing this philosophy means being active on Yelp. Let’s break down Baer’s approach to social media complaints.


Complainers want a fight. Do not give it to them. Arguing with an angry person never results in them yelling “You make a very reasonable point!”

When customers get angry in person I play the “I’m with you” card. I see it from their perspective. Instead of arguing why I’m right, I decide to be their friend. It diffuses the situation.

Do this on Yelp. This is not your chance to tell your customers why they’re wrong.


Baer says customers don’t always have to be right, but they always need to be heard. Start with apologizing and then come up with a solution to fix the problem.

Don’t get into a back and forth comment battle. Only respond twice.

If they’re still angry and unwilling to accept your solution and won’t move the conversation to a private channel then you need to let it go.


Then that’s great! Some people are trying to help you out and they need to be rewarded.

This is why you should answer all complaints publicly. It looks good when a business is humble, grateful and transparent.

Remember, there’s no room for canned responses. People will see right through it and hate it. This is where you need to be authentic and engaged.

Read our blog about engaging your customers on Instagram.

LuLu Lemon and Zappos are known to have incredible customer service. Nike and Starbucks  also have service to be inspired by. Use these businesses as examples to grow yours.


Get your regulars involved by asking them to add their opinion to sites like Yelp.

Technically yelp discourages you from doing this. They say it looks fake and creates bias. But, experts disagree and say do it anyways.

Read this Forbes article about simple ways to get customer reviews. Or this Convince and Convert post.

Create a rapport with your customers. They’re the people you want talking up your business – someone that knows and loves it for exactly what it is, that has a favorite product and will come back 100 percent of the time.

If you know your customers well then just ask if they’ll take a moment to review you. They’ll more than likely be happy to help.

You can’t require a customer to post a review in exchange for a discount, but Yelp does have check in offers. People love it when they get free or discounted items – it’s an easy way to start the conversation of asking a customer to leave a review.

The facts show it’s important to engage your customer’s review. Don’t let this aspect of customer service slip through the cracks.

For more reading check out The Huffington Post’s take on engaging customer reviews.


[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.

Volunteer Spotlight: Julie McReynolds


Julie McReynolds
Marketing Consultant, Julie McReynolds Consulting
NAMA Historian

What prompted you to join NAMA?
After being in corporate marketing for eight years I went back to school to get my MBA to advance my career. I had been involved in the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce and loved how open and welcoming they were/are and that they really wanted to connect others to opportunities but there wasn’t a focus for marketers.

I really was looking to broaden my marketing network and Career Services recommended I join my local AMA chapter. With my previous experience in other organizations in Nashville, I was not too keen on this idea. Those organizations were not welcoming at all. It was very clear that it was about titles and advancement in their career with no desire to help others.

In May of 2010, I attended my first NAMA event. I knew absolutely no one. I’m never one to shy away from the unknown and wasn’t really expecting anything special. The very first person I met was past president and Achievement In Marketing Awards committee lead, Kerry Price. During that time I also met then-volunteer chair Holly Grenvicz. Between the two of them, they made me feel like I was part of the AMA family. As soon as I left the luncheon I joined NAMA and started in my first volunteer role on the AIM committee with Kerry Price, Julie May, and current president Mary Pollman.

You currently serve on NAMA’s Board. Why did you decide to volunteer?
This is my fifth year on the Board and I have been lucky to be able to bounce around to different roles. The warm welcome that I got at that first luncheon really made me want to help those ladies out by being part of the NAMA family where I could continue the legacy by also help other marketers get connected.

What has been your proudest moment in this role?
Being awarded NAMA Volunteer of the Year – 2012-2013 year!

How has NAMA impacted you professionally?
WOW, that’s a loaded question! Included in the volunteer work that I have done with NAMA I have also volunteered with the AMA in several roles; on the social media committee for Leadership Summit and as a judge in the National Collegiate Marketing Awards competition. Being able to network nationally has helped me refine my skills and gain credibility which has helped me grow my business.

What differentiates NAMA from other groups?
It is welcoming and everyone understands that marketing is growing and changing so we all welcome each other’s knowledge of the different facets and industries.

Can you share a memorable experience from your career thus far?
I’m sure there are memorable things about my career but my memories stem around helping others….humans or of the four-legged-furry kind. Ha!

I am super passionate about several things: mentoring college students, and connecting others. Over the years I have mentored a number of college students through the AMA nationally and NAMA locally. Every time I teach a student about managing their digital brand, connect someone with a potential employer/internship opportunity, or I speak to a class and then see students at networking events I get really excited. It is so important for students to network and build their online and offline professional brand presence as soon as possible.

Why would you encourage others to join and volunteer with NAMA?
I think anytime anyone can expand their network is a good thing. NAMA allows anyone either new to Nashville, a new college graduate, or just new to marketing to connect with industry executives who can positively impact the trajectory of their life. There are plenty of people in the organization that are willing to help if asked.


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.

NAMA Past President Rides to Raise $2,500 for Cycling Nonprofit

By Katie Soltas, NAMA Blogger | 8.26.16

Bill Selph, NAMA past president and current mixer coordinator, turned his passion for cycling into a profitable youth fundraiser – and learned a few marketing lessons along the ride.

In his second annual summer effort, the avid cyclist biked at least 20 miles for 20 consecutive days to raise $2,500 for the Tennessee Interscholastic Cycling League, which fosters students’ early interest in mountain biking. The funds will go toward loaner bikes for the children, grades 6 to 12, and other program expenses.

Bill Selph 1

Selph’s most memorable highlight of the journey was his longest ride – an 86-mile trek with a colleague along the historic Natchez Trace Parkway from Tupelo, Miss. to Nashville.

“We sure were happy to see my wife waiting to greet us at Loveless Café with refreshments,” Selph said.

Bill Selph 3

As for his fundraising results, Selph increased his earnings by 250 percent, which he attributes to his generous friends and family who supported the cause.

In 2015, Selph used Facebook as his sole marketing tactic, but this year distributed personal post cards and emails, along with Facebook, Twitter, and a GoFundMe campaign. The heightened social media strategy garnered 615 visits to his GoFundMe site, retweets from popular cycling companies such as Trek Bicycle (200,000 followers) and 133 Facebook shares.

“I’m hoping to get the students more involved in 2017,” Selph said. “I can’t wait for them to do some of the rides with me.”

Bill Selph 2

Despite the physical demands 20 miles per day of cycling would place on any athlete, Selph maintains that the toughest battle was the mental commitment of riding each day – no matter what.

“I was lucky with good health this year. In (2015), I was sick with a 103-degree fever, but I mustered up the (mental and physical) courage to ride at least a mile around my neighborhood,” he said. “Life comes up, but you have to keep going and honor the commitment.”