QWASI talks community building with New Orleans Lafitte Greenway’s Program Director Nellie Catzen

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In this episode we explore Lafitte Greenway, a vibrant park in New Orleans, with Program Director, Nellie Catzen. Nellie shares the importance of the Clarity Project to New Orleans residents, and how the community engaged with Contactless Technology to help in the redesign of the Greenway plaza.

Prior to COVID 19, Nellie and her team had sought a more innovative way to engage the community beyond the normal outreach programs, which had previously consisted of time-consuming efforts like canvasing areas, door-to-door meetings, and public gatherings to solicit input. Upon learning more about IOT, they decided to go Mobile, which in a COVID landscape, has since made contactless solutions even more imperative.

Over a two-day period, the Lafitte Greenway Clarity Project saw more than 200 community members engage to provide real world feedback on the park redesign. Results included:

a) + 200 unique voters with over 30 minutes of average time engaged per person

b) + 224 taps and Scans across 12 location touchpoints

c) + 6,000 minutes of brand engagement for park corporate sponsor, Claritin

d) ~ 2000 insights from community feedback

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A big believer in the power of community, Nellie Catzen joined the Friends of Lafitte Greenway team as Program Director in 2015. She directs health promotion, environmental education, and community building programming and events on the Greenway, and manages the organization’s communications and key projects. Before joining the Friends of Lafitte Greenway team, she worked as Special Projects Coordinator for Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans, where she focused on strengthening the agency’s services to refugees and immigrants. Nellie holds a degree in Environmental Health from the University of Pennsylvania, and proudly serves on the Board of Directors for Grow Dat Youth Farm.

 

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QWASI Talks Transformation in Sustainability & Circular Fashion with B.R.A. Recycling Agency Founder, Kathleen Kirkwood

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Sustainability and the rise in circular fashion are the focus in this episode as QWASI’s Lauren Black, and Peter Farrell join Kathleen Kirkwood, Founder of B.R.A recycling agency & K.R.T., to discuss how technology and millennial influencers come together to innovate and transform this industry. Kathleen shares her thoughts on how these two forces are now enabling brands, who are doing good things for the planet, to connect with and activate younger generations, and the positive impact this has on business.

The webinar highlights how mobile has made it easier to grow brand sustainability programs faster, connecting with students who are eager to share causes they care about via social platforms. And, how marketing teams can use real-time reporting to quickly understand the right assets to use, to exponentially grow the impact of their sustainability initiatives.

Sustainability is good for business and the world:

a) Sustainability increases sales revenues by 20%

b) 66% of Americans consider sustainability when making a purchase decision

c) Implementing contactless drive 3x higher CRM acquisition

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Kathleen Kirkwood: Founder, the b.r.a. ® recycling Agency & Kirkwood Renewable Technologies. KK has been a QVC intimate apparel spokesmodel since 1992. In parallel, she launched KRT that recycles bra’s into commercial carpets and works with brands on their circular sustainability retail initiatives. Kathleen’s Goal is to Reduce Landfill and Ocean waste of the 50,000 tons of plastic, textile and metal from the ½ billion bras sold each year, while driving traffic for trade-in’s to allow Women to Experience All New Bra’s from the Exciting Innovators of Today, including their awesome Recycled Fabrics and Low Impact Technologies coming to market, with more Sustainable Products.

 

 

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QWASI & CISCO Talk Innovation with Transformation Lead, Amit Chetal

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In this episode, QWASI’s Lauren Black, and Peter Farrell join Amit Chetal, VP Cisco Retail Innovation, to discuss industry innovation and transformation. Amit shares his thoughts on the accelerated pace of innovation within the last 90 days as businesses reacted to provide safe, secure and contactless experiences for their customers.

The webinar covers the important role mobile has played to activate these solutions leveraging NFC/QR technologies. From curbside pickup and contactless ordering, to Panera expanding its offering into grocery and pantry items, mobile has enabled brands to change their business models to meet customer needs.

As our expectations as consumers have fundamentally changed, businesses should consider:
a) Contactless solutions for consumers grow basket size by 50% b) Leveraging digital channels with contactless programs leads to 3x higher CRM acquisition. c) Investing in platforms that scale reduces overhead costs by 20%.

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Amit Chetal: VP Cisco Retail Innovation. Amit is currently the Retail Lead for the Americas Industry Organization. He is veteran of Cisco of 17 years Amit has direct experience working with key retail clients on their digital transformation strategies around enhancing the customer experience, empowering store associates, and data driven analytics. Amit has also worked with many retail clients in creating a digital transformation framework for mapping retail initiatives across the entire retail value chain from online to the store, particularly in the sub segments of grocery, big box, quick service restaurants, mall, health and beauty, and apparel. Prior to his current role, Amit has held several roles at Cisco including consulting, innovation, direct sales, supporting some of the largest retail and healthcare enterprise accounts. He is active in industry organizations and events such as the National Retail Federation.

 

 

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October Talks: Contactless Trends in Sustainability and Meals on Main Street addressing Food Insecurity

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October Web Series scheduled. In the upcoming web series, Peter and Lauren will talk Contactless Technology and Sustainability with Kathleen Kirkwood, and learn how QWASI is supporting the Meals on Main Street program to assist those who are food insecure during these challenging times.

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Kathleen Kirkwood – “Don’t Burn Your Bra / Recycle It” / Founded in 2010 by Kathleen Kirkwood, former FORD Model and current QVC Intimates & Fashion Brand. Bra Recycling was created not only to recycle bras into carpet padding as a Green Initiative, but also to donate metal underwire proceeds to help fund Breast Cancer Research.

Kate Keller – Communications Director at Cartias, Meals on Main Street. ca·ri·tas: love for all people
We provide people with more than a hot meal, we are neighbors helping neighbors, getting to know each other, becoming friends, being a sharing community. From 2013 to 2017, we have seen a shift in the makeup of the population with respect to those living in poverty. Based on the most recently available demographics, the number of people currently living below the poverty line in our area is 10 times greater than the number we feed through our kitchen and four times larger than those who receive fresh produce and protein from our food pantry.  We have come to realize that our reach still falls far short of the community’s need Our feeding programs now provide an equivalent of 16,767 meals a month. Help us feed more. Our goal for 2020 is 240,000 meals.

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Rocking the Vote in 2020, Talking Technology Innovation with Acclaimed Musician, Meghan Cary

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Be inspired as Meghan Cary, Founder of the River Rock Project,  shares the history of the Justice Bell and the fight for Women’s access to vote, and her insights into how technology and COVID have changed the stage for music and its role in the future of voting in America.

Lauren and Peter take you behind the scenes to learn how Meghan’s team had to rethink their entire production of the River Rock Project Anthem video scheduled to launch at the 100th Anniversary of the passing of the 19th Amendment at Independence Mall in Philadelphia. The video is part of a larger toolkit designed for GOTV organizations across the country, as a way to inspire, and galvanize women to raise their voice and vote.

Meghan discusses the importance of human connection and how it is imperative, especially now, for businesses to give their customers this gift of connection. She also shares insights that can help brands better connect with their audiences and drive engagement

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MeghanCary Image WebseriesMEGHAN CARY: Founder of the River Rock Project. The River Rock Project shines a spotlight on women who fought for equality throughout history and gives voice to women who are continuing that fight today. At the heart of the River Rock Project is the women’s empowerment anthem “River Rock”. Fueling the project is a powerhouse team of women bringing their unique talents (in film making, project management, public relations, music, and more) together to celebrate the tenacious women who won us our right to vote 100 years ago and galvanize women to get out the vote today. Listen to the River Rock Anthem by Meghan Cary Here

 

 

September Talks: Honoring the 100th Anniversary of Women Voting, and the Rise of eSports

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September Web Series scheduled.  In the upcoming web series, Peter and Lauren will talk Contactless Technology eSports and Mobile Gaming with Zachary Rozga, and Voter Rights and Music Collaboration during the time of COVID with Meghan Cary.

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Zachary Rozga – CEO of The CE / Mobile Gaming – The Consumer Engagement Company (Thece) guarantees improved engagement by offering a new foundation of experiential marketing and audience engagement. Improved engagement is possible when three key attributes come together: stimulation, entertainment, and ownership.  Co-founded by Zachary Rozga and Ian Owen-Ward, the mission of Thece is to deliver improved engagement for brands and consumers.  Play Here

Meghan CaryRiver Rock Project – Using music to celebrate women’s rights, Meghan brought to life the River Rock project that advocates continued action to equally achieve economic, social and political equality for all, and by getting out the vote.  “We’ve earned a voice…let’s raise it!”  Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of a Woman’s Right to Vote.

QWASI Announces Thought Leadership Series on Contactless Trends

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Digital Transformation is no longer an option, but a necessity for business in the face of the 2020 COVID Pandemic.  As COVID continues to raise concerns across the globe, businesses have been challenged to innovate at a rapid pace.

QWASI’s Marketing Director, Lauren Black will host a web series that looks at COVID specific CONTACTLESS TRENDS that are being implemented across every business sector.

This web series will include a 10-15 minute session with industry leaders facing COVID challenges and discussing how their businesses were affected, and how they have addressed these challenges.

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QWASI is proud to be hosting a series that does not merely focus on challenges but the innovators who have rapidly deployed new solutions to transform the world we know.
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See Previous Innovation Panel Discussion with QWASI & CISCO

NRF 2020 Panel from QWASI Technology on Vimeo.

eGaming Changes the Face of Virtual Events, The CEO of the Consumer Engagement Company Shares Insights

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Listen and learn as Lauren & Peter deep dive with Zack Rozga, the CEO of The Consumer Engagement Company, into the changed world of live events and the transition to event virtualization.

As COVID continues to change our physical and virtual worlds, Zack shares the work his team is doing, enabling eGaming to sit alongside real world sporting competitions, live music venues going social, and business conferences morphing into virtual treasure hunts.

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Zachary Rozga – CEO of The CE / Mobile Gaming – The Consumer Engagement Company (Thece) guarantees improved engagement by offering a new foundation of experiential marketing and audience engagement. Improved engagement is possible when three key attributes come together: stimulation, entertainment, and ownership. Co-founded by Zachary Rozga and Ian Owen-Ward, the mission of Thece is to deliver improved engagement for brands and consumers. Play Here.

 

 

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College Athletics Plan Reopening & Innovate to Bring Sports Back to Campus

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Lauren & Peter talk Colleges and Sports reopening with Fordham University’s Assistant Athletic Director of Marketing.

Nick handles Marketing, Promotions, and Ticketing at Fordham and previously served as the Athletic Facilities and Events Manager.

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In his current role, he is responsible for developing and coordinating all marketing and promotional activities for Fordham University’s 22 varsity teams, and designing ticket marketing plans to promote fan attendance. He also coordinates and implements all game-day promotional activities and contests and uses social media to further the marketing and branding efforts of individual sports and Fordham Athletics. He works closely with the Director of Corporate Sponsorships to ensure all corporate sponsorship agreements are fulfilled, and serves as the athletics staff liaison for the Fordham University Student-Athlete Leadership Academy.

Prior to his arrival in the Bronx, LaMarca served as the Athletics Operations Manager at American University from 2016-17. He was previously at Boston College within their Athletic Facilities and Operations Department, Bloomsburg University (PA), and the University of Massachusetts.

LaMarca received his undergraduate degree in Sport Management at the University of Massachusetts, and Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Bloomsburg University (PA) in 2015.

On Friday July 31st, Qwasi’s Marketing lead interviewed Nick to ask about his knowledge and expertise around college athletics reopening post covid, and the contactless solutions being utilized to facilitate the reopening. The video of this interview has been edited and posted online on QWASI’s Linkedin page. Below is a transcription of the interview.

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