Posts tagged with "Brands"

LGBTQIA via Gabreille Archuletta for use by 360 Magazine

Ten Reasons Brands Should Celebrate Pride Month

By: Skyler Johnson 

As Pride Month approaches, it’s expected that we’ll see a number of pride-related products pop up. There are people that think brands celebrating Pride Month is “tacky” or “preachy.” However, it’s still important for brands to show their support for the LGBTQIA+ community, even if it’s just in the month of June. Here are a few reasons why:

10. Celebration of Pride Month Wasn’t As Good In 2020

Because of the Black Lives Matter Protests and Covid-19, brands didn’t celebrate Pride Month in 2020 the way they had in previous years. While they could have done both, a lot of companies didn’t. So, it’s extra important this year for brands to show that they still care about LGBTQIA+ individuals through celebrating Pride Month extra hard.

9. Generates Profit for Brands

Statistically, being in support of the LGBTQIA+ community has been shown to increase company sales. People will have more respect for those companies, and will be more likely to purchase their products. 

8. Supports LGBTQIA+ People for No Cost

While brands may have to change the packaging, that’s all they need to do to support Pride Month. There’s no real loss that can be had towards brands celebrating Pride Month, except for a few people thinking that it’s “preachy.”

7. Shows the Power of Brands

Brands are more powerful than you might think. After all, we’re constantly seeing them, and they are always affecting our lives, even if we don’t realize it. Everything we do– from brushing our teeth to putting on clothes–has us interacting with brands. And the actions of brands do affect us. Think about the uproar that Discord received over changing their logo. People got legitimately upset over the actions of a corporation. So people will be affected by brands that are supporting the LGBTQIA+ community, and may change a negative stance if their favorite brand supports it.

6. Recognizes the History of Hate Towards LGBTQIA+ People in the U.S.

It’s sickening how much hatred has been directed towards people just trying to live their lives. For a long time, there were laws that prohibited homosexuality and being trans was virtually impossible. 2015 was the year when gay marriage was declared legal, and that was only six years ago. Because of the long struggle with homophobia and transphobia, it’s important to recognize these people, and show them we care through the brands we as Americans deem as important.

5. Decreases Homophobia and Transphobia in the World

Although Americans are more accepting of LGBTQIA+ individuals compared to other countries (and even we’re not perfect), there are other countries that are much worse. A lot of countries still have laws that prohibit gay and trans individuals from being themselves. Given the international nature of these brands, they can help change the mindsets of people in countries that are much less accepting than the U.S.

4. Encourages Workplace Diversity

If members of the LGBTQIA+ community see that companies support them, they’ll be more likely to apply for jobs within the company. Diversity in the workplace has been shown to increase profit margins. 

3. Raises Awareness

I wouldn’t know about Marsha P. Johnson if they weren’t honored by Google during Pride Month. Brands can give people information on important people in the LGBT community, and makes people aware of history that would otherwise be forgotten. I was never taught about the Stonewall Riots in school, but Google allowed me to find information on this important piece of LGBTQIA+ history.

2. Supports LGBTQIA+ Individuals

LGBTQIA+ artists and creators have been historically marginalized due to their identity. There was a time, not long ago, when your career would end as a result of coming out. Now that there are more and more creatives able to have careers despite, or even because of, their identity. Brands should support those individuals via including them in their ad campaigns or creating a product inspired by them. Smirnoff’s partnership with drag queen Alyssa Edwards is a great example.

1. Gives Brands a Reason to Donate to Show they Care

A lot of brands have donated part of their proceeds to charity. LGBTQIA+ people are thus given the resources they need to survive and thrive.

Mina tocalini illustrates article for 360 MAGAZINE

Brands You Will Love In 2021

There is no shortage of new and established products out there for consumers to try in 2021. One thing that has become obvious over the past year is consumer preference for quality. Because online shopping has skyrocketed consumers in the U.S. and around the world are seeming to tend to require more information about the products they buy. The reason being that, while browsing is something you do even when shopping in person, the level at which you can browse when ONLINE shopping is far superior. 

Say you are at a big box store looking at laptops. Maybe there will be ten options there for you to choose from or, if the place is especially large, maybe you’ll get twenty. But on the internet, there are literally hundreds of options – all of which you can research and choose from at your leisure until you choose the right one. While increased variety is certainly not a bad thing, it can also lead to something called “decision paralysis” where your mind gets overwhelmed at the number of options and defaults to something familiar. This is where curated lists like the one below come in handy: We did the research to pick out some of the best brands so that you don’t have to!

Organic Protein

Whether you are a fitness fanatic or not, protein powder is on just about everyone’s shopping list these days. Supplementation should not be thought of as a “substitute” for a good diet but, when taken in combination with a good diet, high-quality (preferably organic) protein products like those from Orgain can make a world of difference in terms of your overall health. 

Adding a high-quality protein powder or drink to your diet can lead to better muscle growth, improved appearance of your skin, more energy, less hunger, and more. 

A Secure, Portable Cubby

Tech Tub2 is a way to keep multiple electronic devices safe when you travel with kids, or students, or whatever the case may be. The device is epecially designed for educators but also has important uses for coaches, parents, and others.

Athletic Apparel

Like every other facet of life, exercise (and physical activities in general) have a uniform. That’s not to say you should be wearing a suit on the basketball court, but you should be wearing the athletic version of the RIGHT STUFF. And that’s where tasc performance comes in. Offering some of the best in bamboo-based technology, clothing from tasc will help you look the part and feel the part whenever you are doing something athletic. It’s high-performance athletic apparel for adults with an authentic approach to their fitness.

High-Quality CBD

CBD has a wide range of benefits, many of which are only now be discovered by the American public. But not all CBD is created equal. If you are looking for a product to help you sleep better or to help reduce your muscle or joint aches and pains, considering going with broad spectrum CBD from Healist Naturals.

Shaving Done Right

LTHR Shaving makes shaving a genuinely enjoyable experience. Sure we all know that a warm, old-fashioned shave feels better and makes you look better than a rush job. But who has the time? With the hot lather shaving device by LTHR, now you do!

The Best In Men’s Jewelry

JAXXON is bringing back men’s jewelry in a big way. Whether you’re thinking about a gold chain, silver bracelet or anything in-between checkout JAXXON for high-quality jewelry at reasonable prices.

The Best Way to Get Comfy

This faux fur blanket from Everlasting Comfort is the only comfort you’ll need while traveling or when snuggling up on the couch. The right blanket makes all the difference when it comes to sleep or relaxing at the end of a long day. That is why, even when it comes to your blanket, it pays to get something that is genuinely high quality and which will feel comfortable enough to help sleep better and relax easier.

Conclusion

Organic protein, athletic apparel, and more. Many products have come out over the past year with those listed here being among the best. Enjoy!

Mena Garcia illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Mena Garcia

By: Katherine Fleischman

Argentine-born “it” girl, stunner, and globe trotter Mena Garcia is in the process of launching her sustainable, vegan, and cruelty free fashion and beauty brands, as she searches to keep mother nature at the top of her priority list. Gone are the days of harmful damage to our beautiful earth as we move towards ensuring a green future and Mena wants to play her part in proving that fashion doesn’t have to be harmful to the planet. “In the past technology and the science of materials was limited to just niche sectors such as medical clothing, technical clothing, and sportswear. I’m here to put my spin on things and bring the fantastic technology we have to the forefront and prove that we can all wear sustainable clothing,” said Mena.

As scientists, researchers and designers join forces to try to reduce the carbon footprint that the fashion industry currently stamps, independent designers like Mena will be crucial to leading the way and showing fashion giants that if she can do it, so can they. “I believe we can really make a difference by using our voice on social media platforms and by setting online trends to really catch the attention of the largest fashion brands around the world. Independent brands like mine can truly make the difference here.” Mena, who has been modeling since her teens, has almost three-quarters of a million Instagram followers and this platform will undoubtedly help her cause. 

She talks passionately about using “waste from oranges to make silk,” or “pineapple leaf for a leather alternative” and spectacularly “agricultural waste bacteria.” As Mena continues to learn more, she’s using her education to find out interesting new ways to create sustainable fashion in a term she coins as “trash fashion” – using literal waste to create something new. “One person’s trash is another person’s treasure certainly comes to mind!”

“I’ve been studying with expert Mila at Estudio MG in a special collaboration with Closet Sustenable in Argentina. I’ve learned so much, including some incredible things. One of the main focuses is creating materials inspired in nature where cells and proteins are being used to create different types of real leather but in a totally sustainable, vegan and cruelty-free way.”

However, it’s not all smooth-sailing or simple. To be true to the cause, it is essential to be sustainable throughout the whole process. Everything from material sourcing, grading, dyes, and packaging needs to be clean and green. Mena said “I want to also make sure that workers during the production process are treated fairly, with respect, are safe, and paid fairly. To be truly sustainable, the entire process needs to be true to the terms “sustainable, cruelty-free, and vegan.”

Mena is certainly one to watch in 2021 and 2022. She says “it will take some time because piecing it all together perfectly is crucial, but I’m ready for the challenge and encourage everyone to join the cause! You can follow Mena on Instagram or her website for more about her modeling, image-consulting, and her upcoming brands.

Mena Garcia image courtesy of  Do-Tell Publicity
analysis illustration by Rita Azar for 360 Magazine

The growth guide to Instagram 

Is your business growth starting to slow down a bit and you’re struggling to get it up again? Have you ever thought about using Instagram as a part of your marketing strategy in order to grow your business?

Launched in 2010, Instagram has been around for a while, but is well known for being one of the most popular social media platforms to date. Instagram has a user base of over 1 billion people, many growth services such as Growthoid which help to organically gain followers, and more businesses and brands on top of that. Instagram has become very popular among the business community and a great way for brands to promote themselves and grow. Just having a profile isn’t enough though, and neither is just posting advertisements. There is a lot more that goes into social media marketing, and making use of a platform to grow isn’t easy but it is well worth the work. 

If you are new to Instagram then you might not know how to use the platform effectively. Here is a brief guide on how to grow on Instagram.

Have a good profile 

When it comes to social media, people tend to think that all that is important is the content you post, and all they want to do is advertise their brand or product as much as possible. While, yes, it is essentially about advertising, there is so much more that goes into the behind the scenes work in order to have a well-run and successful account, like starting off with a good profile.

It is so important to have a good and easily recognisable profile so that followers can quickly discover who you are and what’s your brand is about. Included in your profile should be a good username that is short, catchy, and at least the same or similar to your brands actual name. There should also be a profile picture that is your brands logo or something to do with your brand, and a good, well worded bio that include your location and website link. 

Post at the right time 

Contrary to some people’s beliefs, there is actually a wright and wrong time to post on Instagram. The general rule of thumb is that it is best to post in the evening when people are done with work and school for the day and have dome down time to spend on their phones. While this is a good baseline to follow, it changes from business to business, depending on their target audience, as well as their location and time zone. 

A great way to discover what the best time is for you to be posting, is by looking at analytics. By looking at different posts you can see which one did better at different times of the day, and which allowed you to get more followers. From there you can plan out a posting schedule to post at the most optimal time for your followers to see your content. 

Use reels 

Although a relatively new feature to the app, reels are quickly becoming one of the most used parts. Similar to TikTok, reels allow you to post short form videos that can be filmed, edited, and posted all from the same platform. It is a fantastic way to show off parts of your brand like the behind the scenes or meeting the teams, without tainting your actual grid or timeline with things that don’t match it. 

Partner with brands and influencers 

Although it may seem counterintuitive to be working with the competition or with other brands, it is actually very helpful and a great way to be introduced to a much larger audience. Partnering with other brands is a great way to collaborate and allows for you to support them while they return the favour and support you. You could even collaborate with brands that have products which may accompany yours. For example, if you are a company that sells sportswear, you may want to collaborate with a brand that sells protein powder. 

You could also enlist the help of influencer to grow your account. Influencer have massive followings that will listen to their every word. If you can get an influencer to speak well of your brand, you will be set for a while.

KO Média reveals Nov. issue of ELLE Canada

KO Média is proud to unveil the November issue of ELLE Canada featuring the much-anticipated results of the 2020 Beauty Grand Prix.

This edition of the highly-regarded annual event invited 550 jurors to blind-test 229 products in order to crown only the very best in every category — from skincare to hair-care, from makeup to body-care.
Find out which of your favourite brands made the cut this year — and which new innovators are must-haves!

The issue features more than just hero products: Rising star Florence Pugh, the phenomenon who recently joined the Marvel universe for the upcoming Black Widow, graces the cover. The 24-year old actor who was awarded for her performance in last year’s beloved Little Women opens up about how she’s learned to balance the pressure that comes with starring in a blockbuster franchise. “I wanted to know whether it would be them or me calling the shots,” she explains. “I didn’t want to be part of something where I was constantly checked on and people were making sure I was in the ‘right’ shape.”

Sought-after actor Jodie Turner-Smith also speaks frankly in an intimate feature in the November issue. “There have been so many times in my life when I’ve experienced microaggressions that caused me to say ‘Right, so that’s not acceptable,” she says. “When someone is suffering, their suffering belongs to all of us.”

That search for equity is further considered in the issue via an investigative feature that weighs the risks of so-called ethical AI programs that are being rolled out across Canada. The algorithms are being designed to help companies eliminate harmful racial biases that can affect the hiring process — but, finds journalist Melissa Vincent, there are flaws in the system that aren’t being addressed.

Plus: Have we reached peak skincare?; An intimate tour of designers Byron and Dexter Peart’s iconic Montreal homes and the season’s best minimalist and maximalist shapes.

The November issue of ELLE Canada will hit stands on Monday, October 12th.

KO Média also publishes ELLE Québec, Magazine VÉRO, di Stasio,and K pour Katrine magazines.

About ELLE:

The ELLE network today, including France and the international editions, reaches more than 33 million readers worldwide: 45 editions of ELLE in 43 countries, 25 editions of ELLE Decoration, 5 editions of ELLE à Table, 2 editions of ELLE Men and 1 edition of ELLE Girl. It also represents 45 ELLE local websites, gathering nearly 100 million unique visitors per month. Lagardère Group, owner of ELLE & ELLE Decoration brands, partners with prestigious publishing houses worldwide, through licence contracts: With Hearst Magazines, publishing 15 editions of ELLE and 12 editions of ELLE Decoration, in 14 countries. With Burda, Aller, Ringier and 21 other partners in 29 countries, publishing 30 editions of ELLE and 13 editions of ELLE Decoration. The Lagardère Group is a global leader in content publishing, production, broadcasting and distribution.

About the Group KO:

The Group KO is made up of Productions KOTV, Productions KO Scène, KO 24, KO Média and KO Éditions. Run by the screenwriter-humourist-comedian-producer Louis Morissette, the group is motivated by the desire to tell stories that captivate the public, and to do so by mastering each creative aspect that goes into doing that. Whether it’s television shows, performances, films or magazines, the mission of the group is very simple: conquer the world, and then entertain them. In an industry full of possibilities, the KO Group sees opportunities and takes them.

Boycotting Xinjiang Cotton – No Easy Feat

The United States is moving forward with legislation that would effectively ban cotton imports from China’s Xinjiang province over potential links to forced labour – but such a step would be a massive challenge for the apparel industry, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company. 

The Uygur Forced Labour Prevention Act shifts the goalposts on forced labour by requiring importers to prove any products made in, or containing inputs from, the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) were not produced using forced labour.

Leonie Barrie, Apparel Analyst at GlobalData, says, “Forced labour in any form is unacceptable, and US lawmakers clearly believe an all-out bar is the best way to tackle the problem, as well as sending an important message to Beijing over its policies in the region. Yet, it would be hugely difficult for the apparel sector to enforce due to the sheer scale and complexity of its supply chains.

“As many as one in five cotton garments sold globally is likely to contain cotton or yarn from Xinjiang, often mixed with cotton from other sources and used by garment makers around the world,” Barrie went on to say. “So even if brands have no direct relationships with Xinjiang suppliers, it’s almost impossible to establish whether the cotton in their clothes is tainted by Uyghur forced labour in China.”

Difficulties in accessing the region and speaking openly with workers mean third-party supply chain audits are not an option. Although new tools are being developed to provide greater transparency and traceability from cotton field to consumer – including the use of forensic science and DNA tagging – they can only confirm if the cotton in a product comes from a known source. There are as yet no accurate tests to specifically identify or eliminate Xinjiang cotton. 

“Trying to shift production out of China is yet another challenge,” Barrie added. “Not only do global supply chains depend so heavily on Chinese materials, but nowhere else can match the country’s skills, quality, product variety, factory capacity, and range of products from raw materials to final garment.

“The next step for the Uygur Forced Labour Prevention Act is a Senate vote, but if it’s derailed by the upcoming November elections it will have to be reintroduced next year. Either way, the Xinjiang issue is not going to go away, so brands and retailers must brace for more scrutiny of their supply chains.”

About GlobalData

4,000 of the world’s largest companies, including over 70% of FTSE 100 and 60% of Fortune 100 companies, make more timely and better business decisions thanks to GlobalData’s unique data, expert analysis and innovative solutions, all in one platform. GlobalData’s mission is to help our clients decode the future to be more successful and innovative across a range of industries, including the healthcare, consumer, retail, financial, technology and professional services sectors.

GlobalData | LinkedIn | Twitter

Talkwalker – Most Loved Brands

No Ordinary Love – From Sirius to Hyatt, New Report Draws Consistent Findings on Sentiment vs. Engagement in Capturing Brand Affection

Who do you love? Consumers clearly have their favorites when it comes to brands and international social media analytics firm Talkwalker has the data to prove the most loved brands on social media. But just because a brand is mentioned more often in social media, doesn’t mean that it will always trend higher in terms of how consumers feel about that brand.

Talkwalker used a quarter billion conversations around 781 brands in 28 different industries to create its Brand Love Story 2020 report, identifying the 50 most loved brands from across the world, through the power of social listening and highlighting just what these brands do to be loved. Talkwalker measured social media mentions that are specific symptoms of a brand that generates actual love from its social media fans. Analysts studied everything from consumer engagement and sentiment in both social media and the news, as well as the percentage of mentions that were categorized as related to “joy” and the percentage of mentions that contain love-related words. So brands were actually rewarded for a higher percentage of joyful mentions, and love-related keywords.

One of the key metrics the report studied was engagement – the number of posts mentioning those brands – and sentiment – how people feel about those mentions based on likes, comments and shares. Generally, as engagement goes higher, sentiment drops, as brands open themselves to a wider audience and more criticism. However, in compiling this data, Talkwalker found that loved brands broke this trend, with either exceptionally high engagement or sentiment or both.

“There’s a clear pattern across all these brands,” says Todd Grossman, CEO Americas for Talkwalker. “As engagement goes up – more people react to a brand – the more overall sentiment drops – the more those interactions are negative. There were 25 brands with over 100 million engagements – the biggest brands in the world. Not one has a net sentiment over 75%.”

This report compares engagement rates of brands and their competitors. If a brand posts a great deal, it will get a lot of engagement, but a competitor can get that same engagement through fewer posts. Engagement rate is the total engagement divided by total followers or total views. The higher the number, the better. Overall, for all brands, the average net sentiment is 61.5% and average engagement rate is 8.32.

“Virality is great – it helps brands get content to more people,” adds Grossman.  “But it also opens those brands up to a bigger risk, with an increased chance of negative comments or responses. Companies must monitor their viral content constantly, and respond to detractors quickly, to prevent unwanted backlash.”

Talkwalker studied brands in a number of industries, including airlines, automotive, broadcasters, eCommerce, fashion and beauty, finance, food, hospitality, household, insurance, investment, leisure, manufacturing and engineering, medical, mining and utilities,pharmaceutical, professional services, retail, software and technology, and telecoms.

In the travel industry, 27 airlines, hotels and cruise lines were considered and studied for the final list and  the seven who made the Top 50 Loved Brands overcame the challenge of high engagement, but low sentiment, whereas the others suffered in the rankings due to that measure.

“Across the travel industry, regardless of whether it’s airlines, hotels or cruises, social media can be a double-edged sword,” adds Grossman. “It’s easier to tweet a complaint publicly than register it to customer service over the phone or at the desk. Companies invariably try to take these conversations private, but consumers understand it’s in their best interest to keep things public. Other viewers can very easily relate, and are quick to judge these responses.”

For example, an Atlanta Marriott (40th on the U.S. list) where LSU players stayed before playing in a playoff game last year, ran out of beer 25 hours before kickoff – and on this thread generated 134 comments and more than 6,000 engagements along with another 225 on a Reddit thread that quoted this Tweet. While hosting the team is an honor for the brand, not meeting fans and guests needs is a failed moment.

Another example exists as Talkwalker studied 11 broadcasters and found a high engagement rate, but low sentiment, as evidenced by this Twitter thread. In the period studied Sirius had 47,000 social media mentions, of which 23 percent (1,100) were positive. In that same period they generated nearly 22,000 engagements of which 13,700 occurred on negative or neutral posts. 9,900 engagements came from the 1,100 positive mentions.

In the period studied Sirius had 47,000 social media mentions, of which 23 percent (1,100) were positive. In that same period they generated nearly 22,000 engagements of which 13,700 occurred on negative or neutral posts. 9,900 engagements came from the 1,100 positive mentions.

Moreover, In the period studied, across all mentions (news and social – totaling 5,300) the Sirius brand generated nearly 81,300 engagements. However, 78,200 of those engagements are occurring on posts that are classified as “not positive”, either neutral or negative!

“People love to engage with their favorite shows, sharing and liking content associated with their fanbase,” Grossman notes. “But sentiment is tough. A new show can promote positive sentiment, but a cancelation or disappointing ending to a series, can easily drag the sentiment of the brand down.”

About Talkwalker:

Talkwalker is a social listening and analytics company that empowers over 2,000 brands and agencies to optimize the impact of their communication efforts.

We provide companies with an easy-to-use platform to protect, measure, and promote their brands worldwide, across all communication channels. Talkwalker’s state-of-the-art social media analytics platform use AI-powered technology to monitor and analyze online conversations in real-time across social networks, news websites, blogs and forums in 187 languages.

Talkwalker has offices in New York, Luxembourg, San Francisco, Frankfurt, and Singapore. It is also the home of Talkwalker Alerts, a free alerting service used by over 500,000 communications and marketing professionals worldwide.

Tik Tok Advertising

As advertisers look for openings to begin their normal ad routine, many are looking to attract new audiences to up profits for the remainder of the year. The rush to apps like Tik Tok have many advertisers wondering if advertising on the platform will garner results companies can benefit from.

Brands can utilize Tik Tok to advertise to different types of markets, in which not only directly has a positive affect on brands, as well as the app itself.

Time, Context, and Location are key to a successful marketing
campaign. Given the global pandemic, and the current state of the
country, each state and city is experiencing different things at different times. It is critical to take each of these different experiences into consideration while moving forward.

Personalization: Personalization is now an essential, customers increasingly expect ads to be personalized. Not in a creepy way, but in a way that fits with the way they see the world right now. Brands win audiences by creating connections based on empathy and relevance. 70% of companies that use advanced personalization have already earned 200% ROI or more from it. Social media influencers and analysts alike share the same thoughts on using third party growth services to get more TikTok likes, followers, and views. Virall.com is the largest TikTok likes seller, with more than 300,000 orders completed year to date and a total of 10 million followers delivered across the board.

Ad consciousness: The old way of advertising will not work anymore, brands need to keep in mind the new reality when advertising to groups. Ads that worked pre-pandemic won’t work now. In addition, how you do and don’t address your audience will determine the last connection you make.

Care Package Debuts #1 on BILLBOARD 200

DRAKE’S CARE PACKAGE DEBUTS #1 ON BILLBOARD 200 MARKS HIS NINTH NO. 1 ALBUM, EXTENDS HIS RECORD FOR THE MOST NO. 1 ALBUMS THIS DECADE

Drake’s latest release, the compilation album Care Package has debuted at the top spot on the Billboard 200 chart. The compilation collects 17 tracks many of which were never officially released — including “The Motion,” “Jodeci Freestyle,” “Paris Morton Music,” “Draft Day” and freestyles like “5AM in Toronto” and “4PM in Calabasas.”

The debut marks Drake’s NINTH No. 1 album since 2010, extending his record for the most by any artist this decade. Drake has previously hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with Scorpion (2018), More Life (2017), Views (2016), What a Time to Be Alive with Future (2015), If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late (2015), Nothing Was the Same (2013), Take Care (2011) and Thank Me Later (2010).

Care Package is available now.

Memphis, Tennessee, Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE

Memphis × West Tennessee

By Shelby Barbour × Vaughn Lowery

The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development held the Memphis and West Tennessee Media tour March 19th-23rd. This trip was filled with amazing food, noteworthy experiences and monumental moments.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019 journalists arrived bright and early at the Memphis International Airport and were met by Geiger & Associate staff, and were shortly off to lunch. Lunch was held at The Beauty Shop, which is a hip spot located at the center of the Cooper-Young Entertainment District. The name of the restaurant is the theme. 1940’s beauty dryers are scattered around the salon. Along with this old-fashioned décor, the trendy restaurant also serves amazing, American cuisine. Grilled peaches with blue cheese and balsamic vinegar, herb-crusted trout, cheese grits, and succotash are just a few of the delicious bites they have. After breakfast, the groups split for afternoon activities. The journalists were able to choose between three different activities.

First day activities include taking a tour of Graceland – Home of Elvis Presley, visiting Cooper-Young Entertainment District and Overton Square, and taking a tour of the Memphis Botanic Garden.

Dinner was held at Blues City Café, located on Beale Street. Their ribs have been featured on many food channels and in Bon Appetit’s barbeque issue. Then after, having the options to go out for the night.

The following days were very similar to this one. Starting the day with a delicious breakfast, then continuing to do some fun activity. A lot of the activities include touring Memphis’ popular attractions like The Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum, the Blues Hall of Fame, Shelby Farms Park, the National Civil Rights Museum, and the Peabody Hotel; just to name a few.

Beale street is known for its music, and soul so it’s no doubt that was a must-see on this trip.

This trip was full of opportunity. Tennessee has so much culture, soul, and influence that it’s a no brainer why people fall in love with it. Although the trip mainly focused on food and sight-seeing, some history was thrown in there as well. Tours of the National Civil Rights Museum were given. The museum was established in 1991 and is located at the former Lorraine Motel, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. This museum offered the visitors a full immersion experience through the American civil rights movement.

When exploring Tennessee, it’s hard to not eat everything that comes into view. Luckily on this trip, it offered multiple foods. This trip was all about the food and travel destinations, so without a doubt, there was going to be some great food options. Food varied from fried chicken sandwiches to impossible burgers which are made from plant-based meats and even deep-fried oysters.

What’s a good trip, without good alcohol? Wine tasting, beer tasting, any alcohol tasting you can think of, Tennessee has it. Century Farm Winery is a family-owned and operated winery that is located right on a working farm. Journalists were able to tour the winery and enjoy a selection of handcrafted and award-winning wines. The wine wasn’t the only alcohol being tasted, good olé’ moonshine was available for taste as well. Samuel T. Bryant Distillery was a hot stop on this tour as well. Just like with the Winery, the journalist was able to have a tasting and tour at the Distillery. Samuel T Bryant Distillery tries its hardest to use locally grown produce in their products. The berries in the Blueberry Moonshine and the Blackberry Moonshine come from local farms and the corn they use comes from Madison County farms. They even use local Sorghum Molasses to make a very unique rum product.

The Memphis and West Tennessee Media Tour was filled with so much culture, inspiration, passion, and warmth. Journalists were able to put their creative skills to the test; write and visit places they’ve never been before. When traveling it’s important to try new things and always think outside the box. New foods, drinks, experiences, and great times are what make a trip unforgettable.

Memphis is definitely a place that needs to be on everyone’s travel list. It’s full of so much culture, experiences and food. Memphis is the definition of an affordable visit, foodie town with tons of music history.