Conference teaches digital marketing skills

Nielsen executive will be the keynote speaker

· February 25, 2014, 8:17 pm   ·  Updated February 26, 2014, 12:22 am

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Google, eBay and Anthropologie are taking part in a week-long conversation in digital marketing.

Muse, Penn’s student-run marketing organization, is hosting Muse E-Marketing and Engagement week, or MEME, running Monday, Feb. 24 to Friday, Feb. 28. The conference is meant to provide educational opportunities for students interested in digital marketing.

“It’s not your typical conference,” MEME founder and College junior Samantha Selldorff said.

The first four days of the conference feature hour-and-a-half-long workshops dedicated to a specific aspect of digital marketing including social, design, analytics and strategy. Executive Vice President of Data Fusion and Social TV Analytics at The Nielsen Company Mike Hess will be the keynote speaker on the final day.

The event runs alongside an internet-meme competition where students can submit creative Penn themed memes. The contest closes Feb. 27 and the winner, chosen by the number of Facebook likes, will have lunch with Hess.

The conference uses novel methods to engage students in a non-competitive environment similar to an actual workplace. Students will solve problems in teams and discuss digital marketing issues with associate to executive-level professionals.

“Having gone to conferences at Penn, even ones hosted by Muse, I felt that they all had a very similar value composition,” Selldorff, who is also the Muse co-vice president of promotions and web said. “You hear someone speak, take notes and desperately get in line to get their card at the end.”

MEME Week is filling a perceived gap in digital marketing education at Penn.

“In the Wharton curriculum in marketing, there are so few classes that engage with digital. If you want all the skills you need to become a great digital marketer, you basically have to take one class in Engineering, one class in Wharton and one class in the College,” Selldorff said. “I felt that doing a digital marketing conference was extremely relevant and also necessary for students to get exposure to new and developing fields.”

She added that the students can take away a variety of skills from participating in MEME week. Those learned on social day could be applicable to promoting student groups, and the analytics workshop may inspire students to enroll in a statistics course, she said.

“The thing I’m most excited for is to see at the end who was excited about it, who really got value out of it,” Selldorff said. “We want to create a community at Penn, through MEME, of people excited about engaging in new spaces that didn’t exist before.”

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