October 2014 Volume 4 Issue 4

Hello, October!
At ZenGenius, we welcome Fall with open arms.  We can't get enough of that signature fall aroma, the beautifully colored foliage and the crisp, clean air.  Not to mention, it's pumpkin spice latte season.

As the leaves start to fall, our calendars begin to fill up.  Reach out to us today to schedule an event, or request Zen support HERE.  We would love to help you during your Holiday transitions and events, and look forward to hearing from you!
This Issue's Headliners
Zen Spotlight
Congratulations to Phuong Nguyen from our Columbus team for being selected for our Zen Spotlight!   
Learn more.
IRDC 2014    
Another incredibly fun and successful conference and Iron Merchant Challenge under our belts.
Learn more.
A Luxurious Event      
From beautiful linens and stunning floral arrangements, to a truly unique ambiance, this event had it all.
Learn more.
Also in this Issue: Pelotonia, New Book Release, Word Spotlight, Resident Diva, D.I.Y. Projects and Ohio & Industry Events.

Zen Spotlight
Phuong Nguyen is a talented Graphic Designer that has been with ZenGenius for one year.

My inspiration: 
My inspiration comes from food. I love to try new things, and I don't have to travel around the world to do that. Every recipe and dish has its own story and concept to it, and it inspires me to think outside of the box. I may try something and not like it, and that is okay. I feel the same way about my work ethic; try everything once and if all else fails, at least I know that I tried all available options.      

My favorite part about working with ZG:
My favorite part about working with ZenGenius is the fact that I continuously meet and connect with new and interesting people.     
A favorite project/experience: 
My most favorite experience so far is contracting for L Brands. It has opened the door for me to meet and connect with people within the company and learn about the business. It has allowed me to grow as a professional, and learn new design techniques.           

A random fun fact about me:

Everyone that I've worked with says that I talk like Lily from "Pitch Perfect." If I'm yelling across the room you still wouldn't hear me. 
2014 International Retail Design Conference
Our Top Takeaways
The International Retail Design Conference, or IRDC, is a unique yearly educational and networking event for Designers, Visual Merchandisers, Retailers and Suppliers to discuss, learn and take home a wealth of information.  This year, the primary focus of the conference revolved around creating unique, multidimensional in-store experiences.  A few of the key takeaways include:
  1. BOPIS Strategy - According to a consumer survey conducted by WD Partners, the BOPIS (Buy Online, Pick up in Store) strategy is among the most popular digital retail integration concepts, bridging the gap between the online and in-store experience.
  2. Create an Emotional Connection - Successful retail concepts that embrace an emotional connection often create an environment where discovery and interaction are encouraged.  Rose Bredl, a local flower shop in Columbus that embraces the emotional connection, offers customers interactive hands-on classes.
  3. Embrace Local - More important than ever, embracing our domestic resources and talent will prove to be crucial as our culture evolves.
  4. Global Awareness - Retail continues to expand and evolve across the world, making it more important than ever to understand cultural traditions and sensitivities.
  5. Feng Shui for Retailers - A burst of ancient wisdom that made a big impact in the 90's and turn of this century is now proving to be effective with large scale retail projects.
  6. Environmentalism - Although "going green" may not be at the forefront of retail design discussions at the moment, it is still very important for us to consider. Consumers understand the importance of sustainability, and take notice when retailers make a difference. Congratulations to Walgreens, the 2014 VMSD/Peter Glen Retailer of the Year award recipient, for their very first net-zero energy store in Evanston, Illinois.

  Source: IRDC, VMSD, Lee Peterson (WD Partners) 

The 9th Annual Iron Merchant Challenge
Each year at the International Retail Design Conference we have the unique opportunity to partner with VMSD to create an event that people look forward to all year long: The Iron Merchant Challenge! In its 9th year, the Iron Merchant embraced the local Miami ambiance with a Jazz themed challenge, complete with a live Jazz performer, Tony Camilletti. Titled "Music to my Eyes", participants were challenged to incorporate not one, but two secret ingredients. Can you guess what they were?

To see our very own Rickelle Viney performing a duet with Tony Camilletti, click HERE!

Congratulations to the ORANGE team for winning the 2014 Iron Merchant Challenge!
  Photos by: Richard Cadan Photography
luxuriousA Luxurious Event
We are so happy to have been able to design and implement this beautiful event for a nationally recognized brand. The event, held at the Hilton Hotel in downtown Columbus, was a complete sensory experience. Dramatic lighting created an intimate ambiance, while beautifully textured linens and unique floral arrangements added that special touch of luxury.

 Pelotonia Event
Pelotonia is a wonderful organization with one goal: end cancer. We were thrilled when asked to help create a memorable event to raise money for cancer research at The James Biomedical Research Tower in Columbus, Ohio. At ZenGenius, we love designing events, especially when they are for an amazing cause such as this.

New Book Release
The Art of Visual Merchandising: Short North
Order your copy today HERE

ZenGenius' Joe Baer explores the hip Short North neighborhood of Columbus, Ohio in his new book, The Art of Visual Merchandising: Short North. The Short North Arts District is home to several stellar boutiques, and is Joe's own stomping ground. Joe's career encompasses several years of progressive and innovative leadership in the Retail and Visual Merchandising industry. Joe began operating ZenGenius in 1999 with a vision to bring the knowledge of Visual Merchandising to the world, keep the art of Visual Merchandising vibrant and provide a unique type of creative support to retailers and businesses around the world. ZenGenius has developed into an internationally recognized source for Visual Merchandising and Creative Support. Joe's goal and the goal of ZenGenius is to inspire young creatives, retailers and anyone who loves to shop the art and power of great Visual Merchandising.

Word Spotlight
Click-&-Collect: Also known as BOPIS, click-&-collect refers to the practice of purchasing merchandise online and picking the items up in a physical store.
 Resident Diva
If you're new to our newsletter, meet Rickelle - our Client Relations and Human Resources Manager.  Known around the office as our Resident Diva, she's always dressed to impress - even on her Birthday!
Easy Fall D.I.Y. Projects
Etched Glass  
Create beautifully etched glassware for your next special event or party. 
Learn more
Papier-Mache Pumpkins 
Create these fun papier-mache pumpkins this weekend for personalized Fall decor.
Learn more
Sugar Cage Recipe   
Easily create this spooky dessert garnish with sugar, corn syrup and water.
Learn more
Source: Martha Stewart Living
Ohio & Industry Events
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