WMU News

Presentation focuses on truths of advertising

Feb. 17, 2003

KALAMAZOO -- A Western Michigan University expert will unravel the secret to effective advertising in a rapidly changing world when he speaks at the Haworth College of Business Friday, Feb. 28.

Former advertising executive John E. Weitzel will present "Advertising: Finding Basic Ideas in a Complex World" as part of the Keystone Community Bank Breakfast Series. The presentation, which includes a continental breakfast, will begin at 7 a.m. in Room 2150 of WMU's Schneider Hall. The free Haworth College of Business program is sponsored by Keystone Community Bank. Parking will be available in the Fetzer Center parking lot. Reservations are required and can be made by calling the business dean's office at (269) 387-5050.

"Most business leaders have had experience with advertising, but it's not always clear what works from month to month and year to year," says Weitzel, a faculty specialist in marketing. "We live in a complex world with constant over-communication. Target audiences are getting more and more fragmented and changing quickly. Just when you think you've got it all figured out, everything is overturned and the old rules of advertising and marketing are no longer relevant.

"There are some basic tenets that will always apply, though, and we'll talk about those as well as the secrets to staying nimble and on top of the changing marketplace with all your marketing programs."

Before joining the Haworth College of Business faculty in 2001, Weitzel spent more than a quarter century in advertising. A graduate of Kent State University who earned his MBA at the University of Washington, he spent his early years in the business at Norman, Navan, Moore and Baird of Grand Rapids, Mich., a stint that was succeeded by 22 years at J.W. Messner, which he co-founded. That agency, whose clients included Georgia Pacific and Chevrolet, grew to be one of the largest of its kind in the nation. In 1999, Weitzel joined GMR*Works, an events and promotions firm exclusively dedicated to serving General Motors.

The Keystone Community Bank Breakfast Series at the Haworth College of Business features WMU faculty and alumni speaking about their research and teaching on a variety of timely business issues. The company and college formed the partnership in 2000 to offer monthly presentations that are free and open to the public.

Media contact: Jessica English, 269 387-8400, jessica.english@wmich.edu

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