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Marketing Communications Today Blog


About Marketing Communications Today

Marketing Communications Today is a collection of resources for marketing communications professionals filled with industry research, marketing trends, and career information about integrated marketing and data-driven communications. Learn industry insights through the Marketing Communications Today blog, podcast, as well as Integrate Online.

Fueled by the academic innovation coming out of WVU’s own Integrated Marketing Communications, Data Marketing Communications and Digital Marketing Communications programs, this content will provide both aspiring learners and seasoned marketing professionals with better insights into what’s now and what’s next in marketing and communications.

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Marketing Halloween in 2020

In the face of COVID-19, traditional Halloween celebrations are going to look a little different this year. With Halloween being the driver for the majority of revenue for brands like candy manufacturers, costumes and more, marketers are getting creative with their tactics this season.

Here are some innovative ideas from brands that are making the most of a socially distant spooky celebration.

Virtual Trick-or-Treating

Read Full Article: Marketing Halloween in 2020

Predicting Trends for an Unpredictable 2021

During a time of perhaps unprecedented uncertainty for our industry, marketing trends for 2021 may seem unpredictable and full of maybes. The WVU Reed College of Media's Online Marketing Communications Programs are partnering with Comm(s) Fest to bring together marketing experts to predict trends as we look into an uncertain future.

Whitney Drake: What marketing trends have you seen emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic that were not projected to excel in 2020?

Marissa Hecker: Virtual events,. They were not even being considered coming into 2020. 2020 was expected to be bigger, larger than life. For example, for ComplexCon we executed two events in 2019 and had plans to expand internationally, but now we are pivoting to a virtual experience. Another trend is marketers pushing “stay home” messages. We have seen an increase in marketing for in-home gym equipment and movie releases are moving to streaming platforms. These are things I had not predicted would be successful this year.

Read Full Article: Predicting Trends for an Unpredictable 2021

Relationships, Experience and Allies are Assets in Government Relations, Communications & Advocacy Careers

Relationships, experiences and allies are essential assets in one’s pursuit of your first job or efforts to advance in the government relations, communications or advocacy arena.

Mike first met Josh when he was in his first government relations job at the American Motorcycle Association, excited about founding the Grassroots Professional Network (now the Advocacy Association). He has grown in the three additional association positions since then and is now an award-winning recognized advocate and lobbyist.

Fulton has held three positions in the 40 years he has been in the nation’s capital (U.S. House of Representatives; a small boutique public affairs shop acquired by a global agency; and a West Virginia-based advertising/marketing firm that was acquired by Asher Agency where he now handles public affairs and advocacy communications.

Read Full Article: Relationships, Experience and Allies are Assets in Government Relations, Communications & Advocacy Careers

Career Transitions

Career Transitions

Landing a new position can be extremely exciting after a long search or negotiations process for a promotion. However, leaving behind a past project, team or career can be a difficult challenge as you move onto new responsibilities. WVU Marketing Communications "Alumni on the Move" provide insights into how they are handling recent career transitions and making the most out of new opportunities.

Vice President and Chief Communications and Marketing Officer, Miami University of Ohio
M.S. IMC - 2011

What led to your recent job transition?
I received a call from a search firm right as the Covid-19 pandemic started closing campuses around the country. I admit that I ignored their first contact because I was so swamped with the massive amount of work that needed to be done to support Covid-19 communications at my previous organization. The firm was persistent and presented a compelling story about Miami University and its vision for the future. Although moving during the middle of a global pandemic was not on my bucket list, Miami University's tremendous reputation as well as the details about the position excited me. Although I had never set foot in Ohio, I accepted the offer and moved to Oxford in late August to start in this new role on September 1.

Read Full Article: Career Transitions

Moving Forward with In Person Meetings

How do we move forward with in-person meetings safely? During this conversation, we will delve into ways to plan and execute events during the COVID pandemic. What questions should we be asking and what are some things we can all do to ensure safe meetings. Join Heidi Nizowitz, Director of Convention Services at Mandalay Bay, to learn how event planners are overcoming obstacles in today’s environment.

Cyndi Greenglass: How have you navigated through professionally with the Mandalay Bay and how do you move forward with in-person meetings safely? What are you recommending to your customers and your clients?

Heidi Nizowitz: It's definitely uncharted territory, and we're all learning as we go. It's not something that there was a rule book on, but we’ve got to have communication. We have to be talking to one another. We have to be asking questions and thinking differently than we've ever had to think before. First and foremost, it is about health and safety right now. How do we ensure people are safe when they come into venues and when they're attending events? At Mandalay Bay, and most of the venues in Las Vegas have created their own kind of health and safety plan—make sure your employees are checking their temperatures and testing is readily available for your staff. And then ultimately, make sure your guests are able to answer questions and maybe their temperature checked when they arrive. I think that's just kind of the initial, and then from that, you kind of start thinking about the cleaning and the disinfecting of the property and ensuring that it is a safe environment. Cleaning was always done at night when nobody was around, it was kind of like a hidden thing. Well, now it's out in the open and you see people cleaning and disinfecting everywhere, all day long. So, there's a shift in what's the new normal.

Read Full Article: Moving Forward with In Person Meetings

Exploring Brand Evolution

Brand evolution is the continuous adaption and refinement of a brand based on consumer behavior, market demands and trends forecasting. Brands that grow and adapt with their audience are more likely to see long term success and foster long-term, brand loyal relationships with consumers.

Brands can evolve in various ways, from complete overhauls with a full rebrand to making small changes to a logo or visual identity pieces.

Here are some brands who have deployed notable brand evolution strategies and completed successful rebrands:

Read Full Article: Exploring Brand Evolution

The Symbiotic Relationship between Design and Marketing

Paula Scher is one of the most influential graphic designers in the world. Described as the “master conjurer of the instantly familiar,” Scher straddles the line between pop culture and fine art in her work. Iconic, smart, and accessible, her images have entered into the American vernacular. Scher has developed identity and branding systems, promotional materials, environmental graphics, packaging and publication designs for a broad range of clients. In this session, Scher reflects on career-defining moments, shares her design process and explores the relationship between design and marketing.

Scher has been a partner in the New York office of Pentagram since 1991. She began her career as an art director in the 1970s and early 80s, when her eclectic approach to typography became highly influential. In the mid-1990s her landmark identity for The Public Theater fused high and low into a wholly new symbology for cultural institutions, and her recent architectural collaborations have re-imagined the urban landscape as a dynamic environment of dimensional graphic design. Her graphic identities for Citibank and Tiffany & Co. have become case studies for the contemporary regeneration of American brands.

Read Full Article: The Symbiotic Relationship between Design and Marketing

So, you (still) want to work in event planning?

One day this pandemic will be a distant memory and people will again gather. When that happens, the events industry will need people ready to create amazing experiences and moments worth remembering. From concerts to conferences and fundraising extravaganzas to sporting events, these experts have done it all and weathered many storms along the way. With collectively more than 75 years of experience, this panel will provide you with behind-the-scenes insights and advice that will help prepare you for the #NewNormal. This session is in partnership with WVU PRSSA.

What is the greatest challenge you've faced in your career and how did you overcome it?

Heidi Riffle-Nizowitz: I actually think the biggest challenge is right now. We're in the middle of this pandemic and bringing people together for face-to-face meetings has just basically been put on pause. We don’t know when we can move forward in big numbers. This has been something that has impacted us in big ways, we’ve had to adapt really quickly as things change. That is really the biggest challenge we have ever faced.

Read Full Article: So, you (still) want to work in event planning?

Meet the WVU Marketing Communications 2020/2021 Brand Ambassadors

A brand ambassador is typically thought of as a "spokesperson" for brand, product or organization. The insight that the individual might be paid implies their recommendations and reviews are inauthentic and untrustworthy. However — that is not the case of all brand ambassadors.

Brand ambassadors in 2020 can be individuals who authentically promote a brand, product or organization because of their genuine passion, admiration or desire to share their opinions on it. The individual will share recommendations or products, goods or services, share events hosted by brands and receive exclusive perks and recognition in return.

WVU Marketing Marketing Communications has officially selected its first group of brand ambassadors for the 2020/2021 academic year! This group includes highly engaged alumni and current students who have exceptional achievements in their academic and professional career.

Read Full Article: Meet the WVU Marketing Communications 2020/2021 Brand Ambassadors

How a History Major Got into Motorsports Public Relations

Deciding to shift your career can be challenging. Joining us today, David Hovis, marketing and communications manager for Team Penske, went from being a history major to changing his focus on PR. David will share what brought him to racing public relations, how his role has evolved and advice on how you can switch or start your career in PR.

Michael Lynch: What are some of the biggest changes you've seen in sports, public relations and sports marketing?

David Hovis: Probably the biggest thing that I've seen is the rise of social media and the ability to self-promote and turn yourself and all your race team into your own news outlet and content generating entity. I see that continuing well on into the future as newsrooms shrink and as social media influencers rise. It's a benefit if you are able to combine your digital efforts and your social media efforts to promote yourself, to generate your own content and to push that out via social media and other avenues that can then be picked up and amplified by influencers and/or the other media members that cover your sport or sports in general.

Read Full Article: How a History Major Got into Motorsports Public Relations