074: Perry Drake, PhD (UMSL)

Perry Drake on Innovation City

It doesn’t matter whether you’re an entrepreneur or small business owner, you need to know the latest in digital [marketing] and social media. — Perry Drake, PhD

Welcome to Innovation City—powered by Venture Cafe—where Tyler Kelley and Michael Johnson, Co-Founders of SLAM! Agency, interview innovators, creators, and disruptors to discover how business is changing in the modern world.

Created and produced by SLAM! Agency in cooperation with Venture Cafe St. Louis and Venture Cafe Miami, Innovation City gives you an inside look at how rapidly business and culture are changing thanks to increasing diversity and inclusion, heightened creativity, and a stronger and better-connected business community. Venture Cafe is the largest combined gathering of entrepreneurs and innovators anywhere in the world. Events are held every Thursday in St. Louis, Miami, and other leading innovation cities around the globe.

Today’s guest is Perry Drake, PhD, Professor of Digital and Social Media Marketing at UMSL. University of Missouri St. Louis (UMSL) is the largest university in St. Louis, and the third largest in Missouri. Perry has been teaching marketing and digital media at the university level for over 20 years and is also the founder of MDMC, the Midwest Digital Marketing Conference. Perry sits down with the team to chat about the importance of staying up to date on the latest marketing news and trends, what it takes to put on the MDMC event, how A.I., A.R., and voice activation technology will soon take over, and personal data security and regulations in today’s age. Reach out to Perry on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, & LinkedIn.

They discuss:

  • Starting his career in the corporate world working for Reader’s Digest
    • At the time, Reader’s Digest was on the cutting edge with their marketing techniques
    • Worked his way up the ranks to Associate Director of Magazine Circulation Marketing over 11 years
    • Getting a great base knowledge of marketing there
  • Began building digital marketing experience at NYU
  • Being one of the first people to add digital marketing to the curriculum
  • Originally from St. Louis, but moved to New York for work after graduate school
    • Lived in New York City for 28 years before moving back to St. Louis
  • UMSL approached Perry wanting a digital marketing curriculum
  • The importance of staying up to date on the latest marketing news and trends
  • In 2008-2009, Perry would have to update 50% of his curriculum each semester to keep up with the changes happening in the digital marketing world
  • Being a triathlete and balancing his passions
  • What is MDMC
    • Started in 2013 as a half-day summit with only 7 speakers
    • Utilizing his contacts back in New York to get more speakers
    • Perry’s goal is to bring in both inside and outside thought leaders to discuss the newest digital marketing trends and topics
  • Getting a new system to help organize the 2019 conference
  • 100% of all proceeds go back to UMSL students
  • Trying to get more local students to come to the conference
  • Making sure the conference is financially accessible to students and any size of business
  • Getting speakers that can cover all areas of digital marketing and technology, so that there are no gaps
  • The students that are most successful in his classes are the ones who seek out internships
  • Starting a marketing internship/job fair at UMSL
  • The importance of taking digital marketing courses and educating yourself on the latest to stay up to date
  • Helping students optimize their LinkedIn profiles
  • Possibility of adding a personal branding course to the marketing department
  • A.I., A.R., and voice activation proving to be the next big thing for marketing
  • Online to Offline automation in sales funnels
  • The importance of personal data security and regulations in today’s age
  • MDMC tickets are on sale now
  • The 2019 MDMC conference will be held April 17-18