Black Friday: As Told By The Office

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As soon as the holiday décor is out, the marketing for Black Friday is soon to follow. It’s America’s biggest shopping day of the year, and over the years it has become a holiday in itself. Stores are opening as early as Thanksgiving Day, and companies like Amazon recently announced Black Friday deals would be available November 17th, a whole week ahead of schedule.

The term “Black Friday” was coined in the 1950s in Philadelphia to describe the chaos that ensued from the hoards of shoppers that came into the city the Friday after Thanksgiving. Despite the negative connotation that was once attached to this day, retailers and brands were able to market Black Friday as a day that benefitted customers through the sales that were offered. This retail holiday is now the start of a sales filled four-day event, starting with Black Friday and followed by Small Business Saturday/Sunday and Cyber Monday.

While most of us criticize Black Friday, we are just as guilty by participating in this notorious American “holiday.” Whether or not you choose to partake in this year’s Black Friday festivities, here’s what to expect as told by none other than the employees of Dunder Mifflin.

1. The minute you wake up on Friday morning exhausted, still in a food coma, and realize this was a terrible idea.GIF 5.gif

2. You struggle to find a parking spot that’s close to the entrance, so you settle for one that’s a mile away and make the trek back to the mall in the freezing cold.GIF 3.gif

3. You see long lines wrapped around the building and overhear people talking about how they’ve been here since midnight.
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4. It doesn’t matter where you go because you’re constantly surrounded by tons of people, and everyone is testing your patience. GIF 19.gif

5. Store displays are decorated with bows and garland and “All I Want for Christmas Is You” playing on the speakers – but you’re still recovering from Thanksgiving.GIF 9.gif

6. You make it to your favorite store to get those shoes you had your eye on, only to find out they are completely sold out and all hope is lost.GIF 10.gif
7. You try another store, and in the distance you see those same pair of shoes you so desperately want – and you do everything to make sure you get them.GIF 8.gif

8. You knock over two racks of clothes and jump over a small child, but you manage to beat another shopper to the punch. You finally get your hands on those shoes, and you feel nothing but success.
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9. Your Black Friday adventure leaves you feeling satisfied and accomplished – until you check your bank account.GIF 6.gif

10. You have remorse over the amount you spent, but remember that in three days it’s Cyber Monday. Meaning more deals, no crowds, and shopping from the comfort of your own home.GIF 14.gif

By: Lynsey Sain

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Total Taylor Shift

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Taylor Swift, a global pop culture icon and musician, was known as a sweet innocent country artist. When she began her career, her songs quickly gained recognition and she immediately assimilated a loyal fan base. Since the release of her third studio album, Red, the music sensation has transformed her musical style and the way she brands herself.

The media targeted Swift shortly after her rise in popularity. She became known as a ‘heartbreaker’ because she seemingly generated tragic romances, which were the inspiration for many of her songs. She used the media coverage of her unfortunate circumstances, to make a transition from innocent country singer to unapologetic pop sensation.

Her latest album, Reputation, which released on November 10th, is a musical expression of her fight against the media chatter, which, coincidentally, was self-inflicted most of the time.

In her attempt to hang on to the musical trends, has Taylor Swift abandoned her true self, or is she just now showing it to the world? How authentic is Taylor Swift’s brand?

~ Ben Yerby

 

 

Friendsgiving

As we near the Thanksgiving Holiday, advertisers are heightening the exposure of holiday ads to reach target audiences. A recent trend introduced to the market is “Friendsgiving”. Friendsgiving is now a hit with the college age demographic. It is a time for people to gather as friends and celebrate what they are thankful for! Most people are inspired during the holidays to try new recipes and host parties. Friendsgiving gives people the opportunity to gather away from the family to celebrate things such as friendship and fellowship. It is a celebration with delicious food, games, and fun!

On the downside, hosting a dinner party for your friends could potentially be stressful. No matter, marketers take the time to supply you with everything you need! Things such as cute decorations, and food ideas. For example, Whole Foods Market has dedicated an entire blog to Friendsgiving. Their wish is to help supply people with tips on organizing  parties, breaking down recipes, and selecting a menu. This is very effective because the hosts of Friendsgiving will feel less stress because of the tips. Not only will the brand reach its target audience, they also have the chance to advertise their brand. Advertising is a huge portion of the holiday season.

Another example of brands executing their adaptation to holiday trends is Amazon offering deals on Friendsgiving items such as t-shirts, frames, photo wall accessories, and decor items to set the table. Friendsgiving has become a central part of the Holiday season due to brands adopting advertising tactics to promote it.

Advertisers always find ways to adapt to their target markets. Friendsgiving is a perfect example of them doing so. This exposure does not have to be a negative thing! They want to include people and ensure that everyone has a good holiday season. So this holiday season kick back and enjoy fellowship with your best friends remembering the reason for the season!

-Hannah Smith

Gobble Gobble

Thanksgiving Day falls on the fourth Thursday of November each year, which just so happens to be November 23rd this year. Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday celebrated in Canada, the United States, certain parts of the Caribbean islands, and Liberia. This holiday is marketed as a day to remember how the pilgrims wanted to give thanks as they were exceptionally thankful that their crops had grown.
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Over the years this holiday has become a classic way to bring families together. While it has been presented as the classic meal at grandma’s house; many restaurants have taken it upon themselves to prepare their own traditional dishes, making Thanksgiving day a well-advertised holiday.22

In the last few decades, turkey trots have been marketed as a part of the traditional Thanksgiving day. A turkey trot is a long distance run that is known for helping to burn calories before individuals go eat too much with their loved ones. The promotion of turkey trots has brought more attention to the traditional turkey filled holiday while incorporating new rituals to this classic family day. The-Turkey-Trot

The annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade takes place in New York City and is classified as the world’s biggest parade. The parade is put on by the department store Macy’s and has been a way for the store to promote their brand. The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has become a traditional household program to watch and is filled with entertainment, fun, and music while being a great way to kick off the Christmas holiday. macys-thanksgiving-parade

Thanksgiving has become marketed by the way individuals eat, celebrate, and shop. Though Thanksgiving has typically been known as a relaxing holiday, it has been slowly taken over by the Christmas shopping that begins at midnight and sometimes even earlier. We call this madness, Black Friday Shopping. Black Friday is known as the best day of the year to shop, as stores advertise the best deals that they can offer.

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By: Michelle Conrad

Why REI is Winning Black Friday

When I joined the retail world last year, I was disappointed to leave my family Thanksgiving night to work a 12 hour shift on Black Friday. Over 25 million people have this same issue, working at big box stores that open the night of Thanksgiving and stay open throughout the night and all day Black Friday.

REI, however, is taking a different route.

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Announcing they are going to be closed on Thanksgiving day and Black Friday for the third year in a row; their 12,000 employees can actually spend time with their families and “enjoy the outdoors.”

“When you look at retail today, this playbook of promotions and consumerism, it’s not working,”REI Chief executive Jerry Stritzke stated in a Fortune article. “It feels like it’s lost momentum since then.” Stritzke also states that the company is not closing their doors as a marketing strategy because “employees and customers can see through that.”    “You don’t promote your way to love,” Stritzke said. “it’s about being a different kind of company.”

Closing REI’s doors during the kickoff of the holiday season has received positive feedback and strengthened their brand. A campaign even emerged from this move called #OptOutside where people can post their photos of their outdoor adventure.

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As discussed in IMC 2, the authenticity of REI’s brand and statement is pretty strong. Few mega companies close their doors on Thanksgiving day, and even fewer on Black Friday. REI not only made this decision to let their employees spend time with their families, but also supporting their brand to enjoy the outdoors. Their two reasonings push them from generic to authentic.

 

Sources from: http://fortune.com/2017/10/30/rei-blackfriday/

by Taylor Maloch

Stranger Things 2 Fan Reactions

On October 27th, 2017 an amazing thing happened. The release of Stranger Things 2, the most talked about netflix original. Were you wondering if your joy and obsession with this dark show is normal? Did you think your binge watching phase was a little out of hand? Did you feel a part of you missing when it ended?

Well as your friend, I am here to tell you according to majority of fan reactions it is totally normal. You are NOT alone…and “friends don’t lie”.

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I think we all had the same reaction after the first episode.

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Fans are reacting every second to the new season.

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Believe it or not, five minutes after saving the tweet above there were 177 tweets following. They were mostly positive fan reactions to the show. I think it’s safe to say fans of Stranger Things have the marketing covered, no need to hire a marketing team. For example, here is some of the art created by fans.

It’s the talk around town, no matter where you are.

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Tyler Walker a local Stranger Things fan says, “It’s the perfect blend between 80’s nostalgia, The Goonies, and Super 8. It is bundled together in a borderline comic book themed television show. You can’t help but binge watch.”

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We thought we loved Dustin after season one…the love only grew after season 2. Especially after the snowball dance.

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According to chron.com, the shows creators are already working on plans for season three. Who is ready?!

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Last but not least, when you go to bed tonight remember to sleep tight and don’t let the demogorgons bite.

 

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Written by: Josie Edwards

The Walking Dead’s Survival Guide to Marketing

For the past few years, The Walking Dead has been one of the best TV shows to gather such a large fan base and actually be able to keep it. Whether it be killing beloved characters, retweeting fans, or even just throwing in a really creepy walker close up, we can never get enough.

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Season eight is the latest season to be shown so far, and fan reactions are pouring in. The first episode begins where Negan, the bad guy with a weird fetish about his bat, and Rick, our small town sheriff who turned into the protector of the main focus group, are going to war. Everyone was excited for the episode, but there were many mixed reviews.

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The first episode involved the past, present, and future. It’s like Scrooge met the apocalypse and everyone watching is just like “I don’t even know anymore.”  However, fans are still hanging on because they want to know what’s going on and make sense of everything. AMC has tricks up their sleeves by using this method, but can this be more of a negative move than positive?

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Yes, some people enjoyed the new episode and found the speeches and the flash backs and foreshadowing to be really interesting. AMC has done this movement of time before, but all these time movements in one episode might be too much for some viewers. However, at the end of episode one, we are all a little confused, if not lost.

The Walking Dead is also always bringing in new characters, and as the season goes on, we get to learn more about them. One specific character is Shiva the tiger. Shiva is literally killing at her role and helps save her team from the Saviors. However, even though Shiva is a killer, she is still our little kitten of fur and sharp teeth.

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The Walking Dead is beginning to go from walkers being the threat to the survivors being the focus of the show. Walkers are actually more or less innocent victims being led into a trap by groups of people to kill other people as weapons. In a sense, walkers are no longer the issue. People are the enemies now, and everyone is turning against each other. Walkers will not make the population go extinct, but surviving people will.

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The Walking Dead has evolved over the last eight seasons. They are taking on darker roles and experimenting with psychological issues in characters. However, when do we get to see just a good old walker killing? At this point, a throwback to a walker killing spree might be more of a way to attend to viewer satisfaction than the twisted dynamics evolving in this series currently.

-Myranda Ross