The University of Northern Iowa’s department of marketing will host the inaugural Digital Marketing Forum from 5-6 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 24, in the Center for Energy and Environmental Education (CEEE 11) on campus. The event is in partnership with nationally recognized digital marketing agency Spinutech, and a number of other business and community leaders will present at the conference, including two Google executives.
“This conference will give UNI a chance to showcase the ever-growing field of data analytics and will also help grow ties between UNIBusiness and other businesses in the Cedar Valley,” said Matthew Bunker, head of UNI’s department of marketing. “This is a long-term perspective with the goal of creating stronger ties with businesses, thus helping elevate our reputation.”
Google executives Nima Oftadeh, principal analyst, and Matt Gaither, account executive, will present at the conference and share insight into how data analytics impacts their work for the most-visited website in the world.
"The Digital Marketing Forum will be a key experience for our students to learn firsthand from talented industry practitioners,” said UNI instructor of marketing Matthew Wilson. “My hope is that having Google employees on campus talking to our students about the digital advertising industry will not only educate our students but will also inspire them."
The event was made possible by a $30,000 gift from Spinutech, an Inc. 5000 business that was co-founded in Cedar Falls by UNI alumnus Marc Reifenrath, who now serves as president of the company.
"All three of us that started Spinutech went to UNI and started it while in school. The community really embraced us and encouraged us to keep chasing our dreams,” said Reifenrath. “It's great to support the college of business administration and we are excited to be a big part of making this event happen. We really want to connect with the next generation of amazing business students.”
Bunker emphasized the impact UNIBusiness has on the community.
“It feels great that businesses such as Spinutech respect and trust UNIBusiness,” said Bunker. “It’s a validation that we are doing something with our students that is benefiting the local community.”
Remaining funds from Spinutech’s donation will go towards growing the department’s advertising/digital media emphasis. According to Bunker, this is a key part of the department’s mission, as well as the mission of UNI’s College of Business Administration as a whole.
“UNI is striving to stay abreast of current developments in marketing,” said Bunker. “As professors, we put a lot of effort into the success of our students. We strive to offer the best.”