seven habits_infographic_2.ashxMcKinsey & Company recently pointed out that companies need to approach digital marketing differently, on a fundamental level. Among their points in “The 7 Habits of Highly-Effective Digital Enterprises” McKinsey notes the ineffectiveness of companies that assign digital marketing to a staffer or set up an internal team. They suggest it is a skill set to be acquired through external resource.

Let’s look at this another way. Social media is the latest marketing touchpoint. Advertising, public relations, direct marketing, web development, and sales promotion are among social media’s predecessors. How many companies attempt to assign those duties to a staffer? Very few. It is arguable that very few companies execute these marketing touch points well internally.

The missing ingredient? The creative talent.

Why creative talent largely resides outside companies is a discussion for another day, but the work of very few in-house departments approaches that of outside agencies. The same applies to social media. Like the others, social media is a distinct and separate marketing skill. Creative acumen is a critical issue in social campaigns as well. Companies that simply push social media off to someone internally run counter to historical precedent and risk falling behind competitively.

Screen Shot 2014-06-27 at 2.23.31 PMGuest Relations Marketing will be extending our ‘Zealotry Marketing’ practice by taking on a new assignment – handling online customer service issues for client Milani Cosmetics. This assignment is an unusual twist for a traditional marketing or ad agency. Typically, agencies handle the external media brand communications, but not the follow-up.

In this particular case, Milani views the online service as a logical extension to the social media work already being handled by GRM. Our ability to respond quickly and in brand voice was critical to their decision to place this additional program with GRM.
For us, it is a validation of not only our relationship and work to-date with Milani, but the increasing value of building marketing from the basis of referral. As we like to say, turning customers into Zealots.

Summertime is FINALLY here. You know what that means: Sunshine. Swimming. Margaritas. Interns Galore. This Summer, Guest Relations Marketing has added to the team two new interns. World, meet Melissa and Alex.

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Melissa Lummus
Lover of tea-cup pigs.
Hater of all-things seafood.
Whiz on the golf course.
Terrified of the ocean.

Melissa just graduated from The University of Alabama with her Bachelors in Marketing. Melissa is most looking forward to starting a career in an industry that is always changing. “I loved the idea of working in a fast-paced environment, being challenged and having the opportunity to work with a variety of clients in different industries,” says Melissa. “I look forward to building relationships with clients and working with them to achieve their goals.”

atlmkt-showroomBesides this internship at Guest Relations Marketing (obviously) the highlight of Melissa’s professional career has been her involvement with the America’s Mart Tradeshow last Summer. She attended a press walk-through with a magazine and later worked with that magazine to set up an article about products.

Melissa is a Zealot for:
Alabama Football, Atlanta Braves, Shopping & the Lake

Melissa’s Bucket List includes:
Attend The Masters
Attend The Kentucky Derby
Travel to Spain and Ireland

 

 
Alexandra Holzworth
Rocks out to country music. Constantly.
Believes the best present is an “experience.”
Puts ketchup on almost anything remotely socially acceptable.

Alex is a Senior at the University of Georgia, double majoring in Communication and Advertising. She became interested in journalism at a young age. “Throughout middle and high school, I watched Rory Gilmore on Gilmore Girls most every day. When I decided to attend the University of Georgia, I knew I wanted to be a part of UGA’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communications,” says Alex. “I aspire to someday work as a creative in advertising. My dream is to help build and write ad campaigns that change hearts and minds in addition to sales.”

378500_366593856764174_532844088_nAs a lover of music, she is still actively involved with Mother Plug Music — a company dedicated to promoting artists in the Athens, GA and Birmingham, AL music scene. “Mother Plug Music was my first internship,” says Alex. “In 2012, the company was nothing more than a Facebook page that shared links to band’s websites. Now, Mother Plug provides users with a concert calendar, promotes artists’ albums on iTunes and works to sell tickets to their shows. We’re even hosting our very first concert starring Anders Osbourne on August 14 at Birmingham’s Avondale Brewing Company. Seeing Mother Plug Music and my responsibility within the company grow has been one of my most rewarding experiences of my life.”

Alex is a Zealot for:
theSkimm, Disney, Heinz & Mad Men

Alex’s Bucket List includes:
Hike the entire Appalachian Trail
Attend the Cannes Lions International Film Festival

On the subject of social media, our group recently had not one, but two Facebook posts go viral.  One surpassed 647,000 likes with 7,800 comments, and another passed one million likes. When you consider what it costs to place an ad that is read by 647,000 – you start to tap the value in social media. Add to the equation that it provoked 7,800 people to ‘comment’ and another 11,000 to share it to their friends. Now the real impact of engagement becomes apparent.

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We like to say social media can be direct mail on steroids. No better example.

“This post was spawned through the success of a previous post,” explained Sarah Crytzer, GRM’s head of online media. “Through experimenting, we’ve learned that people are encouraged and motivated by posts that are positive in nature. This particular post, specifically, is a no-brainer for those who view it. It’s wonderful news, the cake is fabulous, and it makes you WANT to click ‘like” or “share.” For those who have been affected by the disease – it’s encouraging. For those who are advocates of the cause – it’s motivating. And, even if you are somebody who has no relation the the topic – it’s an easy like.” 

We are looking for one person to serve as the “online concierge” for a major cosmetics company.  You will be working for a brand marketing agency. We are creating this position at the request of our client. The right person is great at problem solving. Relishes the challenge of turning customers with problems or questions into customers that are great referral agents.

Primary Skills:
*  understanding / experience in hospitality service
*  ability to be a good conversationalist via email and in social media
*  some work/understanding of social media platforms desired
*  excellent team player
*  understanding and appreciation for what makes a great brand experience
*  flexible and adaptable: as this is a newly created role, we will need to be entrepreneurial – learn and adapt quickly

This is a full-time salaried position with benefits, including health insurance, paid vacation and IRA.
Position is housed in our office in Midtown Atlanta.

To apply for the position, please send a cover letter and resume to Mike Tyre at mtyre@guestrelationsmarketing.com.

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If the adage “add more talented people than you” is true, then GRM is doing it right.

We welcome Alexis Foster to our staff as Marketing Coordinator. Alexis hails from University of Tennessee (SEC fans, please keep the catcalls down), graduating Summa Cum Laude with a PR and Communications emphasis. In addition to her academic endeavors, Alexis’ talents include making it as a finalist on the ABC show Duets and sharing a doubles state tennis championship with her twin sister. Yep, already picked my partner for the next tennis outing.

At Guest Relations Marketing, there are many organizations near and dear to our hearts. If you’re looking for a great evening that will benefit a wonderful cause, check out these events. Each one helps give back to children in-need, both locally and globally.

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The Bootcamp is a collaborative effort between the Department of Advertising and Public Relations in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communications at University of Georgia and Guest Relations Marketing.

The inaugural seminar in February was well-received by a full house. If you are looking for tips, techniques and understanding of how to use social media in your business, then this is the one-day learning seminar for you.

Click here to learn more and sign up for the next scheduled events on March 20 and April 24.

Further questions? Call 404.343.4377.

Some interesting characteristics you should expect of an 8-year-old:

macallan-8-year-old-italian-import-1926-p

  • finger control is quite refined
  • stamina increases; can run and swim further
  • can converse at an almost adult level
  • seeks to understand the reasons for things
  • thinking is organized and logical
  • has strong need for love and understanding, especially from mother
  • can be helpful, cheerful, and pleasant as well as rude, bossy, and selfish
  • impatient; finds waiting for special events torturous
  • favors group play, clubs, and team sports; wants to feel part of a group
  • can be obsessed with, and motivated by money

Why do we mention this?  GRM became 8 years old on March 1st.  And, yes, many of those characteristics likely apply to us.

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