January 1, 2012

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The SAMY Awards

Sales and marketing professionals are often referred to as the lifeblood o...Read More

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The SAMY Awards

Utah's Top Sales and Marketers of the Year

Dianne Lewis, Heather Stewart

January 1, 2012

“To be effective in marketing in today’s environment you need to be creative, strategic and surprisingly analytical. I don’t think most people realize how much of marketing is about numbers and analytics,” she says. Cook plans to continue with strong integrated marketing and PR campaigns using new and traditional media.

Brad C. Parkin

Associate Zoo Director, Marketing Services | Utah’s Hogle Zoo
When Brad Parkin was a marketing director for a local mall, fresh from graduate school in the early 1980s, he quickly fell in love with the intricacies and nuances of his profession. Twenty-five years later and now at Hogle Zoo, Parkin is still invigorated by the ever-changing challenges of marketing.

“I’ve enjoyed a very diverse career that has allowed me to flex my creative muscles, witness the evolution of media strategies from traditional to digital to social, work with fellow employees and manage staffs devoted to and passionate about their craft and, at the end of the day, hopefully make a difference,” he says.

Parkin’s creativity and expertise was on display as he led Zoorasic Park to record visitor numbers, even while the zoo was undergoing construction during 2011. The exhibit brought in 65,000 more visitors than in the same period during 2010. Parkin has now set his sights on a successful launch of the zoo’s new exhibit, opening this spring.

Travis Tidball

Vice President of Marketing | DigiCert, Inc.
Travis Tidball’s career has grown alongside that of startup DigiCert—he joined the six-year-old company five years ago. His position with the brand-new company gave him the opportunity to develop aggressive marketing strategies from scratch. Those strategies helped DigiCert gain traction and grow: its revenue increased more than 500 percent in the past three years, and it now has more than 50,000 customers worldwide. “The biggest challenge to marketing is, in my mind, what brings the biggest rewards,” says Tidball. “There is no playbook, no single right way, and nobody to tell you how to do it. Every company, every culture, and every industry needs a different approach—what works in your situation may be a total flop in mine.” Tidball’s marketing department developed online videos that led to a significant increase in conversion rates. Additionally, the company’s website has logged a four-fold increase in unique site visitors in the past two years. “Build campaigns based on what you think you know, then do something completely opposite and test them against each other. You might be surprised at the results,” he advises.

Jim Olson

Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing | Larry H. Miller Sports and Entertainment Group
Jim Olson knows that sales results drive a company’s success. And to get good sales results, Olson says having a strategic marketing process is key. “I was attracted to marketing during my education, however, my career path led to sales,” he says. “Even though my focus was on sales, I was always intrigued with how marketing drives sales [and] results. Marketing affects behavior and decisions. I love understanding what drives peoples’ emotions, actions and relationships.”

The process of successful marketing is a lot more scientific than many people realize, he says. A lot of research and analysis must go into creating a campaign that hits the right people at the right time through the right medium for the product being sold.

Olson’s keen understanding of sales and marketing techniques increased season ticket sales by 8.2 percent, group ticket sales by 30 percent and other ticket packages by nearly 68 percent.

Mark Walker

Vice President of Marketing and Media Relations | EnergySolutions
As head of marketing and media relations for EnergySolutions, Mark Walker’s job isn’t so much about selling the company’s products and services—it’s about educating a skeptical public about the vital role EnergySolutions plays in the global energy industry.

“A lot of people give us a hard time and say, ‘You’re bringing waste to Utah; you’re contaminating.’ I look at it just the opposite. We’re actually cleaning up areas. We’re actually environmentalists—we’re doing something about it,” he says.

With EnergySolutions taking a beating in the local press and losing the support of state lawmakers, Walker launched an effective campaign to educate Utahns about how the company uses cutting-edge technology to reduce, recycle and safety store nuclear waste. He even issued an invitation for the public to visit EnergySolutions’ radioactive waste disposal site in Utah’s west desert.

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