Marketing Communications Today is a resource for marketing communications
professionals filled with industry research, marketing trends, and career
information about integrated marketing and data-driven communications.
Fueled by the academic innovation coming out of WVU’s own Integrated Marketing
Communications, Data Marketing Communications and Digital Marketing Communications programs, these articles
will provide both aspiring learners and seasoned marketing professionals
with better insights into what’s now and what’s next in marketing and communications.
As the first month of 2020 comes to a close, not only is it time to plan ahead, but
it is also time to reflect on what you have already accomplished. In today’s blog,
WVU Integrated Marketing Communications and Data Marketing Communications alumni
rewind their resumes to reflect on their early jobs in the field.
Zach Costelnock – Field Brand Specialist, Proximo Spirits (Maestro Dobel Tequila) – M.S.
What was your first job in the marketing communications industry?
Internal communications are critical to building an informed and connected workplace.
What happens what you intend to communicate doesn’t have the outcome you desired?
This is what happens when you don’t listen and frame messaging the wrong way.
Today, we live in a world where every internal communication can easily become external
and trending on Twitter. As communicators, we have to understand this and navigate
the environment to write for outcomes. The graveyard is littered with companies
who have died when they were abandoned by their customers. In this podcast, we
will learn how to write a communication for the desired outcome and not fall into
the trap of tone-deaf.
Michael Lynch: What is the difference between internal communication and
In 2020, Instagram continues to rule as one of the top social media platforms behind
giants like Facebook and YouTube. It currently holds the title of being the second-most
downloaded free app in the Apple app store. The platform has a huge reach with
projections to reach 112.5 million U.S. users in 2020, not including the 89% of
users who are outside of the U.S. This means that use of the platform by your company,
or for your personal brand, is crucial. It has to be purposeful and strategic.
The Importance of Developing an Instagram #Aesthetic
An Aesthetic refers to the consistent and cohesive look and feel of an Instagram
feed. Users should be able to look at the feed and understand the brand identity
before they even click on any posts.
Measuring the return on investment for communications and marketing initiatives is
essential across all industries today but how does data-driven decision making
differ for nonprofits, especially for those operating in the public policy arena?
We recently interviewed Ann DeFabio Doyle, Vice President of Communications for
The Pew Charitable Trusts, a non-partisan, global research and public policy organization
in our WVU Marketing Communications Today podcast. Ann and host Susan Jones will
discuss how mission-driven nonprofits use data to make a difference in their work
and how Pew has created new communications initiatives to reach key audiences.
Susan Jones: How is communication and marketing different in the nonprofit
context, versus what many of our listeners might be used to in the for-profit world?
Ann Doyle: I would say scale is definitely different between a consumer
products company and a nonprofit. Pew or other nonprofits aren’t trying to sell
things; we’re trying to advance a mission. At Pew, we’re trying to inform and educate
people and move policy goals. Of course the end result could be different, but
I think some of the core strategies and tactics are the same right now. Across
the private sector, nonprofit, other sectors, the decline of organic reach of content
is a huge trend people are talking about. Nonprofits didn’t use to advertise, but
we are in paid media now, even if our resources or budgets aren’t as large as private
sector organizations. But we’re in there too, now, because we see the decline of
organic reach on social media, and we want to make sure our information is actually
getting into the hands of the people who need to see it. I would note that the
environment has gotten so noisy, everyone is really looking for ways to make sure
audiences are engaging. Email continues to be a significant powerhouse in that
regard. We have a deep focus on email at Pew because we love that people have signed
up to receive updates from us and are engaged. We can look and help segment and
see the types of content pieces that people are interested in. We really can see
reliable results overtime in that way. Another trend we see in nonprofit space
and communications and marketing that I think is probably pretty similar to other
industries, is the turning back to data and the investment in data infrastructure.
We all have to be looking at our data sources and understand what it means.
As a new year and semester begin, some students will find themselves embarking on
the title all college students are striving for – second-semester senior. This
title means going out on any random weeknight because “I’m a senior dude” and only
writing four pages for your five-page research report because “it’s our last semester,
what are they going to do, fail me?” (The answer to that one is yes; they really
can fail you).
While it may seem like all fun and games at the beginning of January, take it from
someone who has been there, it’s a rollercoaster of a few months. Looking back
on my experience, there is a lot I wish I had known about how it would all play
out, so here is what I learned, but set to music.
The start of 2020 is the perfect time to clarify and sharpen the vision for your
personal brand. Too often we take for granted first impressions and how others
perceive us. However, such perceptions frequently form the basis for personal and
professional success. And today, many first impressions are made online through
search engines and social networks. Your personal brand is bound to exist, especially
in an online environment — whether you explicitly create it, or whether it is implicitly
created for you.
In this interview, Dr. Dawn Edmiston will discuss the value of a personal brand promise
and examine practical tools that can be leveraged to create and maintain a professional
online profile. Dr. Edmiston will also share how LinkedIn was responsible for finding
her dream job and tips for how to leverage your personal brand for success in 2020.
Nathan Pieratt: Could you explain more about the value of a personal brand
After recovering from the evening before everyone swears THIS is the day, they will
start hitting the gym every day, eat more spinach, waste less time and become the
“best version of themselves.”
I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions, but as a rising marketing communications professional,
I think I have a good idea of how to set a goal. We have all studied the SMART
method for writing marketing objectives, but how can this be applied to our New
“I’m going to work out more,” that’s a great goal, but what does “more” mean. Make
sure your goal is clear and outlines steps you will need to take to achieve it.
If a goal is focused and specific, you are more likely to stay with it because
you know what you need to do to reach it, there is a level of accountability to
Tradd Salvo, Senior Data Strategist at Droga5, shares his industry expertise on the
importance of understanding data’s role in an agency workplace and why young professionals
should seek education on data-driven marketing.
I think what makes someone coming into an agency, or interviewing for an agency,
more useful is their understanding of critical thinking. Anyone can teach a skill,
like Python or C-Force or something like that, those are easy to teach. The hard
thing is understanding how to solve a problem and the steps that it takes. So,
that fundamental critical thinking is what everyone is really looking for right
now. Also, understanding the role that data plays. Data doesn't really answer the
question, it helps you answer a question, but it doesn't do all the work. Understanding
how you put systems in place and use data to solve a problem means you inherently
understand the overarching goal of that campaign. You use your critical thinking
to do all that. That's really what's valuable to agencies.
I think that data's a buzzword. I think that a lot of people just assume that it's
just spreadsheets or measurements, which in a lot of cases it can be, but I think
people need to really hone in and focus on what they want to get out of data. Data
is essentially a tool, right? So, it's more of understanding what companies need
from that tool and learning the types of skills needed to get that information
Think about the brands to which you feel strongly connected. The brands that really
seem to get you. These are the ones whose newsletter you look forward to and from
which you’d never entertain the idea of unsubscribing. The ones with the social
media presence you instantly navigate to each time you sign on to your favorite
Now think of those annoying brands that leave a bad taste in your mouth. The ones
you run from rather than to. The ones that leave you pondering how you even wound
up subscribed to their newsletter in the first place. The ones whose posts you
banned from appearing in your social media feeds years ago.