After the afternoon academic sessions, attendees adjourned to Harry Caray's 7th Inning Stretch in the Water Tower Place for the keynote dinner featuring CEO of Vibes Media, Jack Philbin. Mr. Philbin covered the importance of Mobile Marketing for today's businesses and organizations. Vibes has been a pioneer in the mobile industry and was started by Jack Philbin and Alex Campbell when pager devices hit the scene. Since then, they have grown the business to continuously offer the most cutting edge methods for clients to reach customers using mobile experiences. The group was incredibly engaged by Mr. Philbin's expertise and encouraged to bring this important topic to the classroom.
Appropriately following Mr. Philbin, the next day's session was titled "The Year of Mobile Marketing" featuring industry leaders and companies at the forefront of the mobile experience. After a kick-off welcome from Loyola Quinlan School of Business' Dean Kevin Stephens the program began. Social enterprise, Flowers For Dreams' founder, Steven Dyme highlighted how his business has grown through social media and mobile delivery services; all while donating 25% of profits to charity. Start-up entrepreneur Kristin Holman of Pay Your Selfie introduced the group to important ways that brands are engaging with brand advocates while gleaning customer insights using tools such as Pay Your Selfie. Next, Jeffrey Cloud of General Growth Properties detailed how GGP is using mobile to accompany shoppers through the mall experience; offering useful maps and customized offers.
After a break for lunch, Chris Nielsen of Solstice Media wowed the crowd with the future of mobile technology such as the Internet of Things, ChatBots and wearables and how marketers will need to understand these. Finally, Mark Tack of Vibes and Steve Kelly of DePaul University explained how they collaborated to bring mobile knowledge to the classroom with DePaul's first ever Mobile Marketing Course for undergraduate and graduate students. The program has been a huge success, garnering attention from industry publications such as Mobile Marketer Daily.
The faculty feedback was overwhelmingly positive and we were, as always, incredibly grateful for the participants who attended from all around the Midwest. Without the support of our sponsors, this program would not be able to help bridge the gap between industry and academic knowledge.