Facebook Group Brings Marketing Mavens Together

Beth Holmes-Bozung, Clover Roy and Ashlea Walter at a recent meeting at Rare Bird BrewPub.

What started as a sharing of similar observations by two local women is now a 240-member strong Facebook group composed of area marketing professionals – all of them female. The group’s goal? To inspire, engage, recognize and connect women in the local marketing arena.

The group, TC Women in Marketing & Communications, was conceived a year ago by Diana Fairbanks, Northwestern Michigan College’s executive director of public relations, marketing and communications, and Ashlea Walter, marketing manager at Traverse City State Bank.

“The idea for the group came from a conversation that Diana and I had about northern Michigan and its particular marketing and communications challenges and opportunities,” said Walter. “We both believe in the power of collaboration and sharing our challenges and opportunities to make our professional community stronger.”

From there, they created the Facebook group, gave it a name, and took off running. It is technically a closed group as far as Facebook goes, but it is open to any woman working in the marketing, communications or design field in the Grand Traverse area.

For its members, the group has served as an invaluable platform on which to bounce around creative ideas for feedback – an informal focus group, of sorts – and pose questions to like-minded professionals. Topics broached in the past have included thoughts on advertising within the ever-changing world of social media, video production, event fatigue, job opportunities and recommendations on vendors.

Fridays, also known as “Pitch Day,” are all about self promotion. Anyone who has an event, service or product to pitch, or even something to brag about, may do so, shame-free.

This past fall, the group extended itself beyond digital-based conversations and started monthly meet-ups.
“There was a desire to get together in person and walk away from our screens to share commons issues,” said Walter. The meet-ups serve as an excellent networking opportunity, she added.

To join, visit “TC Women in Marketing & Communications” within Facebook, and then request to join the group. Not on Facebook? The next meet-up is scheduled for Jan. 25 at Rare Bird Brewpub from 4:30-6:30 p.m.