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Ivy Bender

Food Marketing Manager

Highland Park, IL

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Leader and creative problem solver with over 12 years of marketing experience. In-depth understanding of food marketing, including packaged goods, foodservice, wholesale food products, direct-to-consumer and retail. Developed marketing programs for retailers, bakery items, food ingredients, food gifts, restaurants, baking mixes and more. A strategic thinker, who has a proven track record of getting results. 
 
Areas of Expertise Include: 
• Brand Development & Management • Project Management 
• Strategic Planning • Creative Direction 
• Client/Customer Relationship Management • Direct Marketing 
• Integrated Communication Plan Development • Web Marketing

Work Experience

Retail Marketing Manager-Consumables

Walgreens
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Deerfield, IL
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2011 to Present

Oversee marketing for $7 billion Consumables Division. Develop marketing plans, programs and budgets. Created marketing "packages" and secured vendor funding for key initiatives. 
 
• Led development and execution of seasonal marketing programs including Valentine's Day, Easter and Halloween. Oversaw creative development of tactics including TV, radio, social media and in-store signage. Results included topline seasonal sales growth for each holiday. Valentine's Day TV advertising scored above benchmark on key metrics of branding, breakthrough and persuasion. 
 
• Developed and executed marketing plan for the company's innovative fresh food launch. Launch included expanded refrigerated offerings as well as fresh produce and ready-to-eat items. Marketing plan consisted of geo-targeted tactics including sampling, street teams, out of home advertising and in-store couponing to drive awareness and trial in pilot markets. 
 
• Led creation of the first ever multi-vendor consumable marketing program. Brought three vendors together to develop exclusive vendor-funded Walgreens program, which included merchandising, signage, network radio, sweepstake, microsite and social media. This initiative resulted in a 5% sales increase and prompted the creation of similar programs following this model.

Partner, Account Services & Planning

Savor - the food agency
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Evanston, IL
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2005 to 2011

Revitalized struggling agency by rebranding it with a food focus, providing a clear direction for new business outreach. Won 5-10 new clients each year. Managed day-to-day agency operations, including financials. In addition to overseeing hiring, also developed a network of trusted partners (including freelancers and other agencies with complementary services) ensuring agency could staff up for any project immediately. Conceptualized creative executions for clients and oversaw output (design, copy, web, et al), ensuring they met strategic goals and communicated information easily and effectively. 
 
• Repositioned wholesale bakery to allow for growth. Conducted primary research, gathered insights from employees and current and potential customers. Developed positioning statement, new logo, tagline and yearly marketing plans. Oversaw development of tactics including website redesign, email marketing and sales materials. Post repositioning, bakery underwent significant growth, landed major accounts including Arby's and was able to open a second facility to assist with national distribution. 
 
• Established positioning by segment (consumer, wholesale, foodservice & industrial) for 100-year-old vanilla extract manufacturer. Based on insight that brand name recognition was low even among loyal users, oversaw the creation of a new logo and redesign of their package. Developed launch marketing plan. Tactics included PR, POS, website redesign, direct mail and sales materials.

Marketing Manager

Mrs. Prindable's & Affy Tapple
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Niles, IL
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2003 to 2005

Led the development of new products and line extensions. Analyzed sales figures and labor/material costs to judge profitability of current products and create new products, including gift assortments, which became perennial best sellers. Determined pricing and oversaw creation of all packaging and sales and POS materials. 
 
• Developed marketing foundation, enabling the strictly B2B Mrs. Prindable's food brand (wholesale, private label) to reconfigure itself and sell its gourmet caramel apples and confections direct-to-consumer. Launched company's first eCommerce site, and later, oversaw v2.0 of site. Determined schedule and content of all digital promotions, including email marketing, SEO, PPC, banner ads and onsite promotions. Led e-commerce business from launch to $3M in sales. 
 
• Transformed catalogs from 4-page brochure pieces to 28 page books. Developed strategy, paginations and theme and oversaw photography, design and copy. Scheduled multiple drops. Analyzed resulting sales, especially sales per square inch, list results and buying habits, to further improve future catalogs. 
 
• Managed key accounts (department stores, QVC, TJ Maxx, Harry & David, Williams-Sonoma, etc.), selling new products and developing private label programs.

Account Executive

Simon Group Marketing Communications
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Northbrook, IL
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2001 to 2003

Upon closing of Emery Farley & Associates, successfully set up remaining EFA clients at north suburban advertising agency as well as collaborated with agency principle on marketing efforts for firm's current clients. 
 
• Researched media opportunities and developed media plans. Presented to client at yearly meeting. Coordinated all efforts and media insertions.

Account Coordinator

Emery Farley & Associates
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Chicago, IL
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2000 to 2001

Assisted agency principle in the running and coordination of small advertising agency with offices in Chicago and Milwaukee. Liaison to clients. Coordinated marketing efforts. 
 
• Assisted in posting and sending payables and receivables.

Education

BS in Advertising

University of Colorado -
Boulder, CO

2000

Additional Information

COMPUTER SKILLS 
 
• PC and Mac • Quickbooks 
• Microsoft Office • Adobe InDesign, Illustrator & Photoshop