Tag: networking

Why Real People Like AZIMA

AZIMA Members

You’d expect our official site to talk about the benefits of joining the Arizona Interactive Marketing Association, right?

But the people whose opinion matters more aren’t the official ones. They’re the people like you — who don’t automatically believe the marketing story.

Here are the four biggest reasons those people, the real ones, are excited about belonging to AZIMA:


Mark Knoles of Gate6 singles out the opportunity to meet fellow professionals as his primary benefit from joining the group, and David Knight of Republic Media agrees. “I can sum it up in one word: networking,” he says.

“It’s a great way for people in the Phoenix metro area to connect with other marketers,” notes Paul Borselli of Ethology.

Networking includes promoting expertise built through association with the group, which can boost credibility for individuals as well as companies.

Joanne Levin, who joined as a Mesa Community College student, refers to her AZIMA activity on her LinkedIn profile. “I promoted that I was coming tonight,” she said at a recent event. “It’s a great organization.”

There’s also the prospect of networking leading to new business, as it has for Cody Landefeld of Mode Effect. “We’ve worked on website projects with other member companies,” he says. “I like the collaboration with folks in the marketing world.”

Jackie Wright of Rainmaker Integrated uses AZIMA meetings as a way to introduce new concepts to people who may not be familiar with every aspect of interactive marketing. “I enjoy bringing digital marketing players into our business model,” she explains.

Equally enthusiastic about spreading the word on digital marketing is Lisa Owen of G/O Digital. “This is a great resource for our account managers and fulfillment team to stay up-to-date on trends,” she says.


Lisa isn’t the only one who appreciates AZIMA’s monthly programs on a variety of topics. Makinzie Loeffler of Medical Marketing Solutions confirms, “I’ve enjoyed learning a lot from all the speakers.”

“The headline grabbed me,” says Clay Hanawalt, a visitor who received an email about a recent program. “I’m interested in Facebook and Pinterest marketing.”

That same event drew the attention of Alexandria Marlar, whose co-worker at Spooner Physical Therapy suggested “this might be beneficial to what I do in my job, which encompasses social media.”

Programs change from month to month, always focusing on different aspects of internet marketing.

Tessa Barrientos of Cramer-Krasselt cites the educational opportunities as one of her reasons for valuing AZIMA. “I’m brand new, and excited about learning,” she says.

“I always come away with inspiration and ideas for marketing our company better,” notes Paul Capodanno of Gate6, and Sean Rogers of Republic Media concurs that membership is a great way of “staying abreast of what’s current, the way the industry is unfolding.”


While learning from experts is always popular, learning from fellow members is another benefit. “Everyone shares their knowledge with each other,” says Natalie Barreda of Vertical Measures. “You can share ideas and grow, and help each other grow.”

Mixing and mingling before dinner and the program makes it easy to strike up new relationships. “You can meet a lot of people here who do what we do,” observes Andrew Tamm of The Lavidge Company. “You don’t get to do that often.”

That’s true for veterans as well as for new members like Carrie Morgan of Rock The Status Quo. “I joined six weeks ago because I do a lot on the national level but wanted to do more locally,” she explains.

David Knight confirms the value of coming face to face with others in the business. “I’m new here,” he says, “and this is a wonderful way to meet people.”

Of course, there’s more to enjoy than just great conversation by the bar. “I’m here for the food!” jokes Cody Landefeld, and Jorge Tobar of eBay Enterprise expands on that theme. “There’s a cool menu — the speakers and the dinner.”


One reason for the cool menu of programs is that AZIMA is focused on serving so many different aspects of the internet marketing community.

“There’s a wide variety of speakers from around the industry,” observes Sarah Schager of Vertical Measures. “There’s paid advertising, and social, and everything.”

Austin Leonard of eBay Enterprise agrees. “We’re seeing the full Phoenix digital community here,” he says.

“I like the variety of speakers and topics,” says Kathy Morgan of Ethology, and her co-worker Paul Borselli concurs: “It’s important to understand how all four pillars of the industry work together — branding, agency, media and marketing technology.”

Jackie Wright, an AZIMA board member, explains that the blend of perspectives is deliberate. “The business model is fully integrated; you get a 360-degree view of all the facets of marketing,” she says.

Variety also figures into what Roger Hurni of Off Madison Avenue views as the group’s mission:

“Having been one of the founding companies of AZIMA, I’m often asked why it’s beneficial to be a member of it. The reasons are numerous. To start, the value of the membership fee to the number and quality of monthly events is the best educational deal I’ve ever seen — bar none.

“That said, the real value is in the connections you can make with other members. My comment isn’t about the networking, that’s a given. It’s about the conversations you have with other members that can provide you with new insights into new strategies and practices that would be difficult to find elsewhere.”


If any of these reasons for joining AZIMA resonate with you, you know what to do — click here!

August Event Recap – Social Media Advice with Neal Schaffer

AZIMA Neal Schaffer Meeting

The August AZIMA event featured guest speaker Neal Schaffer of WindMill Networking and author of Maximizing LinkedIn for Sales & Social Media Marketing, who spoke about the power of social media, and in particular LinkedIn, to drive results for your company and your career. Neal reinforced the importance of businesses needing to not only participate in social media, but embrace it throughout their organization. A few years ago, social media was viewed as a fad – but now its here to stay. According to Neal, more time is spent online than watching TV, especially among 45-54 year olds, so it’s critical we shift our marketing focus there accordingly.

Neal broke down social media strategy into something easy to understand and act upon. According to Neal, the average marketer or company goes through three stages of understanding social media:

  • It’s scary and has no ROI – let’s ignore it.
  • Maybe we should consider it – after all, other companies are doing it, maybe even our competitors!
  • How can we do more social media? Social is great, lets do more!

Once marketers move to third stage and have fully embraced social media, Neal recommends the PDCA approach. What’s that, you ask?

  • Plan – plan your strategy & define your goals
  • Do – execute your plan
  • Check – monitor your results
  • Act – revise your plan based on the results you checked

In the end, you’ll realize just how critical the role of a social media marketer is. Neal believes its so important a community manager should truly be a 6 figure job!

Neal also shared some tips for LinkedIn with the audience – Neal was one of the earliest adopters of LinkedIn and known as one of the original “LinkedIn Lions.” He was part of the open networking movement and built his connections to be as large as possible, generating tons of business leads, consulting gigs and job prospects. Neal encourages marketers to be open & connect with each other on LinkedIn as a great way to generate leads and connect with others.

Arnie Kuenn

In addition to the presentation and usual networking hour, we gave away a free Kindle to one lucky attendee, as well as a few copies of Arnie Kuenn’s new book, Accelerate!, which just debuted recently on Amazon and can be purchased here.

Thanks to all that attended!

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 27

This Friday I would like you to meet AZ Lacey French Brown of Agency Side.  Lacey said she loves AZIMA events for all the networking opportunities!  Glad to meet you, Lacey, and hope to see you next week!

It’s almost that time again – time for AZIMA’s monthly social event!  David Szetala will be talking Pay Per Click marketing next Tuesday, March 8th. Register today! Hope to see you there!

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 24

TGIF! It’s Mission to Meet AZIMA members time. And this week, it’s Sonia Bradley Gleason’s time to shine! Sonia, who works at azcentral.com, she said enjoys attending AZIMA events to network and socialize with other industry professionals.  Also, she loves to learn best practices in the industry and learn trends at the forefront of the interactive marketing space.

Glad you enjoy the events, Sonia! Hope to see you next week at AZIMA’s monthly social event featuring Joe Pulizzi!  And don’t forget, for an added bonus, AZIMA is now offering VIP tickets, which give you the chance to be seated as his table! For details on printing VIP wristbands and tickets contact ljablonski@admixsocial.com.

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 21

The 21st edition of the Mission to Meet AZIMA Members series features Nick Roshon from iCrossing. Nick loves to attend as many of the AZIMA monthly social events as possible because of the caliber of speakers and all the great networking opportunities.  Additionally, he learns a lot from each presentation that he can apply to h is own life and career.

Thanks for your continued support, Nick! Be sure not to miss out on next week’s event on January 11 featuring Tim Ash. His presentation with cover landing page optimization will be one you don’t want to miss!

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 19

Wow– 18 video blogs so far and going strong. This week, I’d like you to meet our 19th featured member:  Greg Head of New Avenue! Greg said he tries to make it to AZIMA as often as possible to network with innovative thinkers.  Also, he said he is impressed with the caliber of speakers AZIMA brings to Phoenix.

Thanks for attending our social events, Greg!  Don’t miss the next one — January 11 featuring Tim Ash. His presentation with cover landing page optimization and you won’t want to miss it!

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 14

At the October AZIMA social event, I had the pleasure of interviewing David DeMar from Dynamic Worldwide Training Consultants.  He has been attending AZIMA events since the beginning of 2010 and says the organization fills a void that Phoenix had been lacking.  He also loves to meet new people at each and every event!

Don’t forget about our November social event, next Tuesday!  The discussion will focus on how new media methods are being integrated in a traditional industry right here in Phoenix.

Mission to Meet AZIMA Members: 11

Meet Adrian Vender, Account Manager and Technical Implementation Specialist at WebShare LLC.  He likes the networking AZIMA offers and meeting all kinds of professionals in the interactive marketing industry.

I think it’s safe to say that many AZIMA members enjoy the networking portion of the social events.  I do too! In fact, it is what I look forward to most.  Catch you next month at the Nov. 16th event!  Don’t forget – the event is the third Tuesday of the month this time around!