Sunday, March 8, 2015

An Aussie Connect With Lauren Creed

Lauren Creed, currently working with Pizza Hut as a Sr. Brand Analyst, is our guest for this blog. In this edition, she talks with us about the places she has lived in, her work experience, her love for sports and much more. Read on for a walk down her memory lane:

Q. how long have you been in Dallas and what brought you here?
I moved to Dallas in January 2014 to work for Pizza Hut Corporate. I moved from NYC where I lived for 8 years, 4 of which were spent at Fordham University for my Undergraduate Degree and 4 were spent working at the New York Post in Ad Sales. 

Q. Tell something about the job that you have at Pizza Hut and what things you handle?
·       I report daily updates to our Marketing Leadership Team on our overall business.
·       I am also the acting Brand Manager on beverages and oversee our partnerships with Pepsi and Dr. Pepper.
·       I launched two National windows last year featuring Pepsi and Blake Shelton in conjunction with our BBQ Pizza and Bacon and Cheese Stuffed Crust Pizza launches.
·       I am a member of the Beverage Committee and work closely with the 7 other members of the committee to make high-level beverage decisions throughout the year.

Q. You seem to have experience with marketing skills as you have worked as a brand analyst. Now that digital space is growing and we have apps in our hands, how do you see the future of marketing promotions shaping up?
Digital market is growing. An average person spends more time on their phones and computers than anywhere else. Millennials are the number one target audience for most companies, and part of understanding Millennials is understanding the entire digital space. Companies without e-commerce sites or mobile friendly sites will lose over the next few years. Taco Bell is an example of a company that has done a phenomenal job of growing their business by focusing on the digital space.

This here sure looks like a boon of digital age. :)
Q. With the digital marketing space, the competition has increased . Facebook has opened up opportunities for start-ups to find ground. What are the challenges faced by a brand like Pizza Hut in such a case or for that matter by any old and big brand?
Looking at Pizza Hut specifically, our biggest battles are combating what the competition is doing. The Millennial audience wants to feel like they are eating something unique and customizable every time they step out the door, so the battle for bigger and older companies, such as Pizza Hut, is to figure out a way to be true to the brand and core consumer, while also figuring out a way to draw in that younger consumer by offering variety, fresh flavors and unique eating options.

Q. Do you have fond memories of Australia? Do you miss something back home? Would you like to be there some day again? May be settle back in Sydney?
I have very fond memories of Australia. I am actually 11th generation Australian, despite not having an accent, and my entire family was born and raised there. I spent 7 years living in Sydney when I was 6 – 13 years old and am given the amazing opportunity to go back on a yearly basis to visit family and friends. What I miss most about Australia is my family, and the food. The food is much better over there…Vegemite anyone? 

Q. We play Cricket together- any sports you have a special liking towards?
I am actually the co-captain of a Kickball league that I started at Pizza Hut last year. We play every Thursday, and it is more of a social league than a professional league, but we have a lot of fun and it is a great way to meet new people, especially if you are new to the Dallas area! 

Q. Expectations from life@Cox and post Cox?
I expect to learn about a lot of the areas that will help build upon my overall marketing skills. After working at Pizza Hut for a year, I now realize how all parts of business affect my current role. The marketing team works closely with Finance, R&D, Consumer Insights, Digital, Operations, etc. on every product that we launch and I am excited to learn more about these particular areas so I can bring that knowledge with me to my next job. After Cox, I aspire to become a Brand Manager at a CPG company. I haven’t decided which company yet, so I will lean on Cox and their amazing networking events and opportunities to help me figure that out.  

Q. Any special memories that you would like to share with the class. Something that has had an impact on you and shaped you as a person?
 I briefly mentioned this before, but I have been fortunate enough to live in a few different countries throughout my life. I was born in London, spent time in NYC, Australia, California, back to NYC and eventually landing in Dallas. I really feel like this has helped to shape the person that I am today, and I look forward to meeting lots of new people at SMU who are also from many different places (whether in the US or in the world). 
My name is Zoey and you better not mess with Lauren!
Q. Business over! what do you like taking on to in your free time?
As mentioned earlier, I am the co-captain of a Kickball league. I am also a commissioner for the entire league, and help organize any events that we have throughout the season. I am also an animal activist and have been volunteering with animal shelters since I was 18. I currently volunteer with Dallas Pets Alive and organize their Google Plus social page. As a huge animal lover, I have an English bulldog named Zoey, 7 years old, and a cat named Mason, 1 year old. Lastly, I am taking a Children’s Book Writing course which ends at the end of March, and I am hoping to write my first Children’s Book by the end of the year. 

Q. Do you expect Michael Clarke to bring the World Cup 2015 home?
I may not have my Australian accent anymore, but I am still a huge fan of all Australian sports. To answer your question, YES, Australia will bring home the World Cup 2015….Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi Oi Oi!

 Pirate Lauren! Welcome to Dallas.
We are moving the globe and we are moving to Southern America next to the Land of Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona. The blues made it to the finals of WC 2014 where their resilience with Mascherano, Zabaleta, Rojo proved to be tough for Phillip Lahm and Co to break. Who had romped Brazil 7-1 in the Semi Finals- only a brilliant play by Mario Goetze could save the day for the Germans.  Nicolas Pallazo to tell us more about Argentina.

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