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Elise Ho, Trend Hunter (INTERVIEW)

Ho Discusses Unusual Vending Machines as a Marketing Strategy

— March 4, 2013 — Marketing
Former Editorial Intern Elise Ho's favorite trend featuring unusual vending machines dispenses free products based on whether or not customers comply with certain demands. From hopping on one foot to dancing, if the consumer adheres to these instructions, they will soon get a free product. This is one of many creative examples of interactive campaigns, which is what Elise strongly believes in as a marketing strategy. In line with this idea, though she is a social media enthusiast, she also believes that creating a connection offline and in a personal setting is essential to making a personal connection with the brand.

How do you define cool?

What defines cool is usually something that's unconventional or super weird, and makes you want to tell people about right away.

What is your favorite trend and why?

My favorite trend is interactive marketing. A great example of that is these unusual vending machines, which talk to the customer. There have been a lot of interactive vending machines lately. They make you do all these crazy things in public to get free coffee, coke or whatever it may be. This one in particular is the first crazy vending machine that I've seen. It screams crazy orders at you like hopping on one foot or giving it a hug. In return it will give you free coffee if you do what it says.

What's your favorite accomplishment?

A favorite accomplishment of mine was learning how to snap at Trend Hunter. For 20 plus years of my life I couldn't snap and people have been trying to teach me. I think my problem was that I was trying to mimic them too much. The first week here I was clapping but I wasn't allowed to, I had to snap so I faked it until I made it. It's still quiet, but I'm working on it. It's not fully there yet but it's more like 50/50 rather then zero now.

What advice would you give to the business world?

My advice to the business world would be not to rely too much on social media. I know it's becoming a huge thing right now where campaigns are going viral and people are sending it to everybody. It's really easy through social media, but it lacks human interaction. Similar to interactive marketing campaigns, things are more memorable when consumers can participate in your brand. It also spreads the word more easily, and is more likely that people will tell their friends and want to try it out together. Companies can get to know their consumers that way and get some live feedback rather then just through the computer screen.

What is your favorite thing about working at Trend Hunter?

My favorite thing about working at Trend Hunter is how not serious everybody is in the office. We are serious about what we are doing and when we are working, but the atmosphere in general is not always serious. We are sending crazy videos to each other while we are writing or throwing jokes around. It's not your traditional office space where you are stuck in a cubicle all day.

Any last thoughts you'd like to add about Trend Hunter?

Snaps to Trend Hunter.
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