Eastern Michigan University
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Google Helps Launch Second Annual Social Media Workshop

Published December 10, 2012

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Eastern Michigan University's search marketing workshop not only showcased the university's prowess in a new age of digital marketing, it shared potent search and mobile marketing strategies designed to help regional businesses attract and convert customers.

The second annual workshop, which featured industry experts, EMU faculty moderators and EMU students presenting case studies, was held at the Eagle Crest Conference Center on Nov. 16 and attracted several hundred people.

Michal Lorenc, Head of Industry for Google's Ticketing and Live Events, was the keynote speaker for this year's event. He spoke on the convergence of social, mobile, and search.

"It was a great turnout and a very successful workshop," says Bud Gibson, the EMU professor of computer information systems who coordinated the event. "By sharing our university-based resources, Eastern can help regional businesses make the culture shift to a new age of marketing."

The workshop grew out of a one-of-a-kind search marketing course that Gibson began pioneering in collaboration with Google in 2008. For these courses, College of Business students help non-profits manage their Google AdWords advertising grants. In fact, several of Gibson's students participated in poster sessions and interacted with attendees.

"The workshop was geared to helping attendees learn how to attract online visitors and convert them into customers, but it also was an excellent opportunity to showcase all that our students have accomplished," says Gibson.

Matt Laurin (BA11), who attended last year's conference as a student and came back this year in his role as the social media director for a local publishing company, said he was impressed with the "high caliber" of presenters as well as the information they provided about what works and what doesn't in the search marketing industry.

"The Q & A time after the presentations was very helpful for business owners who want to clarify specific strategies," Laurin says, adding the keynote presenters provided "tons" of useful information.

Anne Balazs, academic head of the College's marketing department, said the workshop generated a great response. "It's clear there's a need for sharing information. EMU's College of Business faculty have the expertise to offer and supply what is needed," Balazs says. "I'm proud to be associated with such a talented group."

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