Michigan Ross School of Business
Yaffe Center for Persuasive Communication

Upcoming Events

Building and Leveraging the Special K Brand

Jeremy Harper, Global Marketing Director at Kellogg will be speaking on how the Special-K brand was strategically and carefully extended into a blockbuster $3 billion global brand, from its “cereal only” origins.

Dec 3, Tuesday, Blau Auditorium, 5.30 pm sharp, to 6.30pm. Open to all Ross students, sponsored by the Yaffe Center for Persuasive Communications.


Recent Events

Fifth Annual Yaffe Social Media Workshop with SEMPO, November 15th 2013

On November 15th, 2013, the Yaffe Center in association with SEMPO hosted the 5th annual Social Media Workshop. Check the archives pages for information about the speakers and to view their presentations


Sandy Kolkey, Executive Vice President, Brand Agency Leader at Leo Burnett

On Tuesday, February 12th at 8:00pm in Room R 0230, the Yaffe Center was pleased to welcome Sandy Kolkey, Executive Vice President, Brand Agency Leader at Leo Burnett. Mr. Kolkey leads the agency's efforts on several feminine care brands for Procter & Gamble across many Burnett offices including those in Chicago, Mexico City, Greater China, Tokyo, Mumbai, Milan, and London. He  spoke about his experience heading up online engagement programs, looking at past work, and discussing how to put together programs to leverage ideas. Previously, Mr. Kolkey was head of the DraftFCB office in New York City, headed up the Boeing account for FCB, and led advertising efforts at Discover Card.


Thursday, January 24th, The Michigan Theater

The Architecture of Footwear featuring Wilson W. Smith III

Nike designer Wilson Smith has created products for Cross Training and Basketball, Andre Agassi's signature line, and in 1997, as the dedicathe designed for Serena Williams, and Roger Federer. Today, as Creative Catalyst in the ZOO – Nike’s Special Other Operations, he focuses on Nike Better World projects, including the design directioed designer for Brand Jordan he created the industry leading AJ 16 & AJ 17. Later n for N7, which brings Sport and all of its benefits to USA and Canadian Native American and Aboriginal communities. Smith’s passion is in Access to Sport, aiding earthquake recovery efforts in Haiti, and adaptive design for Paralympics and other athletes with disabilities.

This event is free and open to the public.

Selected Bibliography:

>AIGA: Wilson W. Smith III, Nike Design Director - DesignTAXI.com

>Nike BetterWorld Projects Roosevelt High School and Haiti - Wilson Smith, 2011.

>“Wilson W. Smith III - Visits Orlando | Critique Wall.com”


Nov 30th, Blau Auditorium,  9:00am-3:00pm:

From Google to Facebook, What's New in Internet Marketing

As marketers rapidly move their media dollars into the newest digital tools (search, social, mobile, viral, and the like), we need a better understanding of what's happening and how consumers are reacting to the brands and messages these new media are carrying. What's new? What's working? What's not performing up to expectations? How are digital campaigns created? And how are new campaigns integrated with other channels?

The Yaffe Center was pleased to host its 4th Annual Workshop on this topic, in collaboration with SEMPO Michigan: "From Google to Facebook, What's New in Internet Marketing" on Friday, November 30th, in Blau Auditorium, from 9am to 3pm

Speakers from digital media companies (including Facebook and search engine agencies), and a major global client, presented their views on the newest trends and findings in this dynamic area. A panel from all those disciplines also took on your questions. Students and professionals all benefited from these sessions.


Speaker Bios:

Tom Thomas – Executive Director, Marketing Intelligence, Organic Inc.

As Executive Director of Marketing Intelligence for Organic, Tom is responsible for the pitching, pricing and delivery of agency analytics services and the commercialization of reporting software platforms for Organic and other Omnicom agencies. His organization includes analysts, statisticians, and reporting dashboard architects based in Michigan, California, New York and India. Marketing Intelligence conducts digital ecosystem measurement including website, search, online display, social media, and mobile. Tom has worked with clients to implement statistical and econometric models for understanding brand awareness and consideration through earned media, forecasting message reach through owned media, and assessing return on marketing investment of paid media using fractional attribution techniques. He brings 18 years of experience and has worked with Hilton Hotels, Kimberly Clark, Volkswagen, Smuckers, Toyota, Walmart, Quaker, PepsiCo, Nike, and P&G. He’s a frequent contributor to Steve Kerho’s FastCompany blog and has served on panels for WOMMA and the Catalyst social media strategy committee for Omnicom and has been interviewed for articles in BusinessWeek online and DataInformed.

Prior to Organic, Tom was a consultant at Scient Corp., Price Waterhouse, Oracle, and Sprint Nextel and led diverse teams for venture and corporate clients encompassing business strategy, technology, and customer experience. He’s also been an entrepreneur providing conceptual design software and engineering services to the U.S. Navy and has conducted business in India, Hong Kong, and Dubai. He holds a B.S. in Computer Information Systems from Indiana University and an MBA with High Distinction from Michigan’s Ross School of Business. Go Blue!

Chris Boggs - Director Search and Media Thought Leadership at Rosetta, Chairman SEMPO

Chris Boggs of Rosetta is a specialist with 10 years experience in search engine optimization and paid search advertising. Chris joined Brulant from Avenue A | Razorfish in 2007 as the Manager of the SEO team, and Rosetta acquired Brulant in 2008. His current role involves working across channels and verticals to promote cohesive strategies and synergies between campaigns and Rosetta Best Practices. Chris has worked in Search Engine Marketing since 2000, both "In-House" and with agencies.

Chris has worked with organizations ranging in size from small businesses to Fortune 100, within all major industries including extensively in Healthcare/Pharmaceutical, Financial Services, Consumer Products and Retail, and B2B. Chris is experienced in strategizing and directing SEO campaigns from keyword research and content development to link acquisition, as well as guiding technical SEO recommendations for HTML, eCommerce, and Enterprise applications including IBM WebSphere Commerce/Portal, Microsoft, ATG, and more. Chris is actively involved in the SEM Community. Chris has served on the Board of Directors of SEMPO.org, the Search Engine Marketing Professional's Organization, since 2006, and was recently elected by the Board to serve as President 2010-2011. He also speaks regularly at major search marketing conferences, including Search Engine Strategies.

Jeff Hupp, Direcetor of Account Management for Facebook

Jeff Hupp is a Michigan native and has worked in the Detroit advertising community for over 15 years.  His professional experience includes working for J. Walter Thompson Advertising, Yahoo!, the Digital signage start-up company Gas Station TV, and is currently the Director of Account Management for Facebook Detroit.  Hupp is also a serial entrepreneur, acting as a partner in both the commercial music house “Blunk Street Music”, and the guitar effect equipment company “Circus Freak Music”.

Jeff will be speaking on the “Facebook Marketing POV” as well as their current and future products.  He has worked with the automotive accounts for Facebook and has a great knowledge of the Facebook API and digital marketing.

Andrew Dinsdale, Director Chevrolet Digital and CRM

Nov 11th, Blau Auditorium,  9:00am-3:00pm:

Social Media Workshop

This workshop gave students a hands-on experience in the fast growing world of marketing using social media. Our speakers gave them a perspective of how companies are using Facebook, Twitter, You Tube, and many other new tools to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of their marketing programs. 


Speakers included:

  • Dr. Courtney Hunt: Organizational Effectiveness Consultant, Founder of Global Center for Digital Era Leadership, Founder of Social Media in Organizations Community, Principal at Renaissance Strategic Solutions.

  • Ken Zasky: President of Spark Communications, a full-service agency dedicated to exploring new ways to create meaningful communications. Spark is part of Starcom MediaVest Group, a global concern with more than 110 offices in 67 countries. Ken is an U of M graduate.

  • Anisha Ahluwalia: Director at Denuo, a Publicis Groupe Company that is part of the Vivaki network. Denuo is a 20 person group of digital savants that invent, solve, and execute within the "white spaces" of marketing (social, mobile, and gaming). Anisha is a social media expert, digital consigliore, and idea catalyst who works with clients including Taco Bell, DuPont, AstraZeneca and MillerCoors.

  • Bob Wisniewski: Former SVP Media Director at Starcom MediaVest/ Dean of SMG University, Adjunct Lecturer at Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism and Integrated Marketing Communications.

  • Todd Kirby: VP Director of Strategic Research Spark Communications. As head of research for Spark, Todd brings the consumer media perspective to bear on critical client decisions. He's responsible for discovering, facilitating, and integrating consumer insight across all media. Todd joined Spark after almost a decade managing research on behalf of SMG client General Motors. His current research for E*Trade-the Spark Sports Segmentation Study- helped E*Trade craft award winning work by focusing on fantasy football. Todd holds a joint Master's Degree in International and Intercultural Communications from the University of Denver as well as a dual degree in Communications and Psychology from the U of M.



This hands-on workshop featured three morning speakers (Elyse Guilfoyle from Google AdWords; Megan Zlatos of Pure Visibility, formerly of Google AdWords; and Melanie Mitchell, SVP of Search Strategy of Digitas). There was an afternoon team competition on a “real” SEM campaign exercise for a local non-profit (United Way of Greater Toledo), with two team prizes totaling $300, managed by Professor Bud Gibson (who runs EMU’s search marketing program).

Bios of the speakers can also be found at: http://www.bus.umich.edu/Conferences/SEM .

Videos From the Workshop:

Search Engine Workshop 2




> Visit our complete Speaker Archives for more details, including videos and presentations, on past speakers.