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Zappos Executive to Speak at Drexel

April 6, 2011

The Design & Merchandising Program in Drexel University’s Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design will host 2011 Distinguished Speaker Aaron Magness, senior director of brand marketing and business development at Zappos Development, Inc. Magness has worked in retail for more than 10 years with brands that put a focus on customer service. He joined Zappos in 2008 and oversees brand marketing, public relations and video/blogs as well as business development. The talk will be on Monday, April 11 at 6 p.m. in the Paul Peck Alumni Center (32nd and Market Streets).
Magness’s talk will focus on the power of the customer in any company’s success. Social media has put the customer squarely in control, making it impossible for a company to control the customer experience.  Through discussion and presentation of everyday experiences at Zappos, Magness will demonstrate the greater role of customers in shaping their own shopping and purchasing experiences, and creating a relationship with brands. Zappos is the largest player in the online shoe market today, with sales of more than $1 billion annually (including accessories and clothing). The company has fiercely loyal customers who brag about how easy it is to use the company’s website, how friendly its phone customer service reps are, and how quickly they deliver product.

The talk is free and open to the public. Seating will be limited and granted on a first come-first served basis.  For more information, visit

After the discussion, seniors in the Design & Merchandising program will present their capstone business plan projects.  Presentations by all graduating seniors including those that have been part of the Nina Henderson and Baiada Center competitions: Bubbles and Brew, College Closets and Hava Java will be shown. Hava Java and Bubbles and Brew also placed second and third respectively in the Baiada Center competition, which is designed to invite participation by a large number of students from across all schools at Drexel, including those who are not currently in the entrepreneurial curriculum.


News media contacts:
Zeek Weil, director communications and events, Westphal College
215-895-2629 or

Niki Gianakaris,director, Drexel News Bureau, Office of University COmmunications
215-895-6741, 215-778-7752 (cell) or

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