Past Presidents: Where Are They Now? Featuring Todd Ogden

Welcome to our new blog series where you can catch up with
AMA Lincoln’s Past Presidents and see what they are up to now.


  1. Where do you currently work and in what position?


    AMA Lincoln President, 2014-2015

    I am currently the Deputy Director for the Downtown Lincoln Association.

  2. How do you think your involvement with AMA led you to that position?

    I believe that having board leadership experience helped factor in on the decision to promote me to a higher leadership role.

  3. What is your best memory or takeaway from being involved in AMA?

    Talking about how amazing our board members are during the Chapter of Year speech at AMA Summit in Chicago.

  4. What has been your biggest marketing or career accomplishment?

    Creating and naming the 1080 smoothie at Juice Stop. Nothing will ever compare.

  5. What advice do you have for entry- and mid- level marketers?

    “It is what it is,” is the only advice my father ever gave me. To help humanize the quote a little: Things happen, focus on the things you can control.

  6. What hobbies do you have outside of your love for marketing?

    To time how long I can sit down before my two boys start wrestling each other. 12 seconds is the current World Record.

  7. What is your favorite marketing campaign?

    Other than the push to make the 1080 the most popular smoothie in the world, I would say the “Share a Coke” campaign.

New Marketing Book Club SIG

By Nia Nielsen, Past President & Book Club SIG Leader

I like big books…

Growing up I got in trouble for reading too much. True story. After a weekend of binge reading, my mom, exasperated, finally threatened to ground me if I did not go outside and get some fresh air. Well I did go outside, but I took my book with me and locked myself in my parent’s 1992 Buick Regal. Needless to say I lost some privileges that weekend, but my love of reading stuck with me.

Fast forward to 2015, when I was asked to lead a Special Interest Group (SIG) for the Lincoln AMA. Immediately my mind jumped to what I need most in my life the idea of leading a marketing book club. Can we talk about perfection?

books + marketing + wine = love

Did I mention wine? Yes, there could be wine.

So here is where you come in. Take this quick survey to tell us what marketing books you’ve been wanting to read, what time works best to meet, and if you like big books as well.

While I’m at it I just going to leave this here.


How to Endure the Long Haul of Content Marketing

JeffJulian-ProfileBy Jeff Julian, CMO at AJi Software and August Signature Speaker for the Lincoln AMA

To steal a phrase from one of the most influential marketers in the modern digital era Joe Pulizzi, I am “super excited” to make my way up to Lincoln in August and present on Agile Marketing.

First, I have never been to Lincoln. My Nebraska journeys have taken me straight up I-29 to head to North Dakota or landing in Omaha for a few days for various events.  I have only heard amazing things and I know I will not be disappointed.

Second, from your pictures and past events on your site, you are an active group and one that is prime to learn about new ideas that are changing the shape of marketing.

One of those ideas that we have been centered on for a few years now is the approach of Content Marketing. While some people in suits dismiss the idea or like to put quotes around when mentioning the term, I have heard it twice this week alone, and it is an effective strategy to deploy as part of your marketing efforts.  If our goal is building brand awareness or generate leads, it is best to do so around an established audience rather than interrupting. Skip Ad, no call lists, and direct-to-recycle mail are all standard practices we do as consumers and businesses. But if you solve a problem, entertain me, or provide education on a subject, I am open to learning more about you and your offering.

Another idea that has developed out of the need to change the way we produce content is the adoption of the agile development process software teams have used for years. They face the need to make changes to their team structures and review performance to avoid churn and burnout.  And like us, they have an every growing backlog of work that needs to be prioritized by consumer objectives.

So if we consider ourselves more than marketers and adopt the term Content Developers, you will continue to the similarities.  We are both focused on delivering value to our audience.  We both need the ability to work together to produce items rather than handing them off one-by-one in an assembly line.  Our teams both need the ability to isolate requests coming in and have some control of the flow of our work.

I hope you see Agile Marketing as more than just doing things faster.  In fact, faster is absolutely the worst word we could adopt in Content Marketing. Faster got us into the mess of producing content that is meaningless and lacks the depth our readers deserve. Being fast made it OK to leave an organization after a year because we worked beyond our abilities to produce more content. And since I like everything in threes, your customers are not looking for the company who produced the fastest content. Instead they are looking for the content that was valuable.

If we are looking for producing valuable assets rather than just word counts, we need a process that can help us determine what the audience wants and how we can deliver in the best experience possible.

ScrumCircles-TransparentThe Top 5 Benefits of Agile Marketing

I really hope you can make it out to the presentation in August. I will leave you with some bullet points you can think about if you are considering attending the session. These are the top 5 benefits teams I see when teams adopt an Agile Marketing approach in their marketing efforts:

  • Team Unity – The breaking down of internal walls for your department will help enrich your team’s experience and contribute to creating a group of highly adaptive Content Developers who can do more when you allow them to learn and give them the tools needed to succeed.
  • Measurable Deliverables – For teams to succeed on delivering content and repeat the process week after week, they need the ability to define the size of the work at hand. Managers and Content Owners also need the ability to hold the team accountable to their estimates so they can have confidence in the delivery timeframes when they communicate a status to the stakeholders.  The time boxes in agile are the vehicle for delivering the accountability and the group based estimates are the team’s voice with the scope.
  • Forward Thinking – Putting a high emphasis on prioritization of the Content Backlog and listening for the changes in the organization will allow the team to start preparing the way for larger organizational initiatives.
  • Sustainable Pace – Burnout can be caused by going too fast or not going fast enough. We need to allow Content Developers to produce at a pace that they can sustain over an extended period of  Agile practices allow this pace to be defined and will expose the team members who need to be encouraged and/or educated.  It will also show you who the next generation leaders are.
  • Audience-Centered – With our customers, influencers, fans, and other members of our audience at the center of every piece of content we develop, we have a higher probability of being successful in delivering content assets that have greater value.

I look forward to meeting you and please feel free to connect up with me on LinkedIn at any time.  If you’re the type of learner that wants to dig into the topic a little more before the event, check out our page dedicated to helping marketing teams become more agile.

See Jeff present to the Lincoln AMA on Thursday, August 14 at the Embassy Suites. Get your tickets now.

Survey says . . . you get what you asked for.

By Mary Kate Gulick, Vice President of Programming

The results from the Lincoln AMA Membership survey are in. You told us what you wanted — the topics you care about, the insights you’re looking for — and we listened. Here’s what 2014-2015 has in store for you.

You said you want to learn about EMAIL MARKETING.

Register for the August Signature Speaker Program. Jessica Best from KC’s emfluence will be coming in to present “Email Marketing: The Good, The Bad and the WOW, That Kicked A$$!” She’s going to focus on B2B email marketing (because you said you wanted B2B content too), and everyone who has seen her speak is blown away. If you want to improve your open rates and response rates, be there on August 14.

You said you wanted DIGITAL and EMERGING TRENDS.

Got it. In November, Nissan‘s coming in to talk about creating a compelling digital experience. In January, Google is coming to teach us how to harness free data to make better digital marketing decisions. In February, Rob Malcolm from Diageo (think Guinness, Johnny Walker, Jose Cuervo) joining us to talk about digital insights that can transform the state of your brand. In one of our SIGs, we’re going to teach you some straight up code so you can better control all your online properties.

You said you still want to know about SOCIAL MEDIA . . . but not just the basics.

Check. Come to the Signature Speaker Program in October. Amber Bates, the social media director from Harley Davidson will stop by to talk about using SM to widen your brand experience. In March, Jeffrey Rohrs, author of AUDIENCE and VP at ExactTarget will cover marketing strategy in the new era of friends, fans and followers.

You said you wanted to know about STRATEGY and writing a MARKETING PLAN.

We’re on it. Our SkillSchool series is built around strategic planning. In August, we’ll tackle consumer research with Brent Chudoba, VP at Survey Monkey Audience. In the November session, you can write next year’s strategy in 3 hours, led by one of Nebraska’s most successful marketing strategists – Traci Grummert of Complete Nutrition. In February, the award-winning creative team at Agent will break down creative strategy so you can create campaigns with legs. Every session is free for members, and every session will send you away with a solid plan to execute.

And of course, you said you want to learn about CONTENT MARKETING.

Done and done. Hawk Thompson from RazorFish is coming in March to share his experience creating a content strategy for the world’s most hated industry – airlines. Specifically, Delta. After that, HubSpot will join us in June to talk about using content to generate, nurture and convert B2B leads. And capping off our first ever SkillSchool series, Joe Pulizzi, founder of the Content Marketing Institute, will kick off our session with an exclusive live webinar. When he’s done, Katie Kemerling, VP of Content Marketing from Ervin & Smith will walk you through how to create a content marketing plan that’s aligned with your marketing goals.

So there you have it. It’s like you picked the speakers yourselves. Here’s how to take full advantage of one hell of an AMA year:

  1. Get your Signature Savings Pass now. You’ll save money, and you’ll only have one transaction to expense for the year.
  2. Register for Skill School. Thanks to the sponsorship from the UNL College of Journalism and Mass Communications, it’s free for AMA members.

It’s going to be an amazing year. Thanks for being a part of it.

Introducing AMA SkillSchool: In-depth marketing training to advance your career

By Mary Kate Gulick, Programming VP

You’ve attended talks on innovation. Sat through webinars on SEM and PPC. Read eBooks on back-linking. Skimmed real books on optimal UX.

If you’re like most people, you’ve found a lot of fluff, but no real foundation. A lot of buzzwords, but no basics. A lot of partial truths but no principals you can build on.

And that can lead to an incomplete understanding of how to make your organization more successful through marketing.

Enter Lincoln AMA SkillSchool, presented by the UNL College of Journalism and Mass Communication.

At the Lincoln chapter of the American Marketing Association, our sole reason for existence is to serve Lincoln-based marketers as an educational resource that will help them be more successful marketers. In that spirit, we’re launching the Lincoln AMA SkillSchool 2014-2015.

4 sessions. 3 hours each. A career’s worth of in-depth marketing know-how.

Each AMA SkillSchool session will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of a critical component of marketing, followed by a work session with an expert in that area. After each session, you’ll walk away with a work product that you can use immediately at your job to meet your organization’s marketing goals.

2014-2015 AMA SkillSchool Sessions

surveymonkeySESSION 1: DIY Consumer Research: Getting the information you need to make solid marketing decisions.

  • When:  Thursday, August 28, 11:45 am – 3 pm
  • Presenter:  Brent Chudoba, VP Survey Monkey Audiencebrent
  • Content: Get an understanding of the possibilities and limitations of surveying tools, then learn to create a surveying tool that will truly yield the information you’re looking for.
  • Takeaway:  A ready-to-deploy consumer measurement tool that will get at the information you need to create an effective marketing strategy AND a concrete plan for selecting participants.


SESSION 2: Write your 2015 marketing strategy in 3 hourscomplete

  • When:  Friday, November 21, 11:45 am – 3 pm
  • Presenter: Traci Grummert, Director of Marketing & Strategy, Complete Nutritiontraci
  • Content: Starting with your organization’s business objectives, Traci will lead you through the process of developing a marketing strategy, including goal setting, what to measure, tactical solutions, and budgeting.
  • Takeaway: A complete draft of your 2015 marketing strategy


SESSION 3: Developing a creative campaign that worksagentlogo

  • When: Thursday, February 26, 11:45 am – 3 pm
  • Presenters:  James Strange, Raleigh Drennon and John Hayden, Agent
  • Content: Walk through the process of coming up with an outstanding Agentcampaign idea based on your consumer research, molding that idea into an actionable campaign, and applying it to the tactics in your marketing plan.
  • Takeaway: A research-based, creative campaign idea with legs that you can start using as soon as you get back to work.


SESSION 4: Creating a content marketing plan that’s right for your goalscmi

  • When: Thursday, May 28, 11:45 am – 3 pm
  • Presenters:  Joe Pulizzi, Founder of the Content Marketing Institute and Katie Kemerling, VP of Content Marketing, Ervin & Smith
  • Content: Joe will conduct an exclusive webinar sharing how a solid content plan can grow your audience, reputation and joeKatiesales. Katie will take over the workshop portion and help you create a content marketing strategy, calendar and work plan based on your organization’s goals.
  • Takeaway:  A completed content marketing strategy and calendar



Each session includes lunch.


9 Facebook Status Update Sins

By Sima Dahl, Parlay Communications 

I am a big fan of status. No, not the kind you get when you fly a million miles on United. I’m talking about the status updates you write on social networks. As I’ll share with you in my keynote presentation this February 13th, I believe that when done well, and with consistency, a good status update can help you forge a strong personal brand and general referrals for exciting new opportunities. A great status update is written with the end destination in mind. For example, I don’t “sound” the same way on Facebook as I do on LinkedIn. On the former I’m snarky, sassy, and 100 percent Sima. On LinkedIn however, I’m a bit more polished – at least I try to be.

I have generated bona fide business opportunities from my status updates – offers to speak, to write, to consult. In fact, the largest deal I’ve signed to date came by way of a Facebook referral, so I don’t take them lightly. What follows is my categorization of the most deadly Facebook status update sins. If you find you’re guilty of one or more, it may be time to pause and reconsider your personal brand.

The Spam Cannon posts a non-stop stream of business updates. Look, we get it, you’re an SEO savant, that’s cool. But I’m not interested in SEO. And over time, I’ll be come disinterested in you.

Yah you look good in that selfie at the gym, all sweaty and flexed. Oh and the one of you in the car, with the sun back-lighting you? That’s good too. Now put on some clothes, put down the phone, and get back to work.

If you can’t make your point in a few sentences, it’s not a point, it’s a novel. I understand on occasion you need more space but I shouldn’t have to click “continue reading” with any regularity. As Mark Twain is quoted saying, “If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter.”

And speaking of quotes, how about you say something original every now and then. Because the Yogi Berra stuff is funny, but old. Really, really old.

I love that you love your pets. Kitty in the hamper is adorable, as is the latest video of Fido chasing his tail. But unless your dog can text like this guy, maybe mix it up? (Sorry, same goes for your kids.)

Hello? Is this mic on? I can hear you breathing…

I get that you volunteer for PETA, are active in local politics, and think milk is evil. But Facebook is not a platform for vitriol, and your posts are becoming… < yawn > what was I saying?

I get it. You’re going through a hard time. But if you can’t find the silver lining, ever, how do you expect me to refer you to a recruiter I know? Lighten up; look on the bright side every now and then.

So you’re watching the Oscars are you? Outraged Cate Blanchette lost? Oh now it’s the Superbowl? “Come on ref, open your eyes.” “Awesome play.” “What a dbag.”  #please stop

Oh that reminds me… There’s one more deadly sin: The HASHTAG HEAVY
#nofilter #foodie #makesnosense #TWSS #payattentiontome #jobs #totallymakingthisup #stop


Sima Dahl is America’s personal branding champion and social networking coach. Through her keynotes and training, she’s helped thousands of sales teams, corporate staffs, business owners and job seekers take control of their digital footprint to drive professional success.

How AMA Helps Me Become a Better Innovator

By Erin Wirth, Prisms Chair

Marketers are artists. We create marketing programs that are our works of art, and are catalysts for the growth and success of our organizations. Being a marketer means it’s necessary for the creative wheels to constantly be churning, and constant innovation is key to our success.

Like many other marketers, I focus much of my time on developing modern, fresh, unique marketing ideas. However, with the growth of tools for marketing analytics, and the current focus on using big data to personalize marketing activities, being a successful innovator now means being both a marketing artist and a marketing scientist.

What is the distinction? The following infographic shows that marketing artists engage their consumers, and marketing scientists improve marketing accuracy and effectiveness.


As I mentioned, I am more of a marketing artist than a scientist. That’s one of the main reasons I find value in being an AMA member. AMA offers a wealth of programs that help me better understand the components of a marketing program with which I am least knowledgeable.  Programs that help me better understand the marketing science field give me the knowledge I need to become a better innovator.

For example, I recently attended a program about big data – what it is, how other marketers use it, and how big data will continue to revolution the marketing field in the near future. The real value was learning how I could use big data to improve my current marketing activities and how I could innovate and make my marketing ideas more effective.

AMA programs are not about sitting and listening. The hour I spend at AMA programs can better be described as a brainstorming session, where I learn how to improve my marketing program while improving myself. For example, while I was being supplied information about big data, I came up with 3 ideas for how using big data could improve my current marketing campaign, while also gaining confidence in myself and my ability to effectively utilize big data.

Marketers are artists, but to be innovators it’s becoming more and more necessary to also be a marketing scientist. Combining art with science is a formula for marketing success. AMA can help you increase your knowledge about being an effective marketing artist and marketing scientist, while helping to increase your confidence in your ability to be an exceptional innovator.


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