Prairie Portrait: Shane Adams of AMC Theatres
Silicon Prairie News: What's the latest and greatest on the interactive marketing front at AMC? | Shane Adams: For the last couple of years, I've been working pretty hard on a project to completely overhaul the AMCTheatres.com site. We started first with the architecture. All our developers are in-house, and we're using an agile methodology,
Name: Shane Adams
Title: Interactive Marketing Manager, AMC Theatres
Residence: Kansas City (specifically, the booming suburban metropolis of Olathe, Kan.)
Intro music: “Numb/Encore“, by Jay-Z and Linkin Park
Silicon Prairie News: What’s the latest and greatest on the interactive marketing front at AMC?
Shane Adams: For the last couple of years, I’ve been working pretty hard on a project to completely overhaul the AMCTheatres.com site. We started first with the architecture. All our developers are in-house, and we’re using an agile methodology, which is a great way for us to build new pieces of functionality quickly. And having the developers in-house instead of as vendors means we have people who care about the quality of the site. Our previous vendors did not seem to care quite as much. AMC has some experience with trying to outsource our web development to some less than savory results. Now we are focusing on the front end and usability of the site and working with a really top-notch firm out of Austin who specializes in web standards and responsive design. I’m really excited about the new site.
SPN: You received considerable attention for a tweet (below) from AMC’s account to Oreo’s. What were your main takeaways from that experience — other than that a clever Tweet about an iconic cookie will get you lots of RTs?
— AMC Theatres (@AMCTheatres) September 25, 2012
SA: I wrote about this pretty extensively on my blog, but it bears reiterating: the most important thing you can get from your leadership team when it comes to social is trust. Trust is something you earn, not something you just get, but fortunately, the social team at AMC (led by Justin Gardner) has earned that trust over time and we’ve been able to capitalize on it when the time is right.
The other thing that I think is worth mentioning that may seem pretty obvious: you need to pay attention to people outside of yourself and your competition. I follow Oreo and many other brands … for inspiration, for best practices and because I’m a marketer … that’s what we do.
SPN: From your experiences running a photography business with your wife, can you impart any wisdom about what it takes to succeed in business with a spouse?
SA: Not to be all saccharine, but it works for us because we’re best friends. Our photography business is a fun side business that we do together. I always wanted to be a photojournalist for the Associated Press when I was in high school. This gives me a great creative outlet to exercise that muscle. And I’m pretty lucky to have such a talented wife. She’s a painter and a high school dance coach. That artistic eye that she brings to our shoots gives us perspective that we wouldn’t have otherwise.
We also get the added benefit of being able to photograph the “behind-the-scenes” of a wedding at the same time. That’s helpful.
The truth is we make stuff up as we go along. The business really started partially because I was taking pictures of Alli’s team and we had a couple of her dancers ask if we’d do their senior photos. It’s grown slowly over time and really exploded over the past couple years. Through it, we’ve really made sure that it’s something that we continue to enjoy together. And we’ve made it work for about five years now in one form or another.
SPN: You blogged recently about the importance of “sweating the small stuff.” What are a couple recent examples of attention to detail paying off for you?
SA: This is going to sound a little corny, but I thought that Oreo’s Daily Twist campaign was a GREAT example of focusing on something small (granted, their main product line, but a cookie) and the way that they adapted it and made it relevant in areas besides “cookie-related” pop culture.
Also, the picture of the guy doing something as small as charging people’s phones in NYC after Sandy … that one just killed me.
SPN: Your blog was featured once in the early (earlier?) days of Silicon Prairie News. Looking back, what would you say the biggest changes have been in your blogging between then and now?
SA: Back when I originally did my Silicon Prairie feature, I had more free time. My blog, Shane Life, has always been my writing outlet, but since that feature, I really had much of my time taken up by … life. Not one thing in particular … I changed jobs to work for one of my dream brands in AMC. Alli and I spend time focusing on our photography business. We go to a ton of movies (nice perk), and we have nieces and nephews that we enjoy spending time with. It’s not that I don’t have anything to say … I just have less time to say it, so I spend more time on Twitter.
I wrote a post about this lack of posting a few months back.
Credits: Photo by Alli Arnold of Shane & Alli Photography.
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