Greetings from Istanbul – my hometown. After a 10+ hour trip, I finally gathered the force to get out a bit and run some errands. Our house here is near major shopping mall, Akmerkez, one of the largest in Europe. Usually it’s so crowded that you need a bodyguard to clear the path for you. Just like in the US, people come here to stroll and to hang out, even if they don’t buy much. It’s always hectic. It’s always busy.
At 5:30PM on Monday, it was near empty.
Stores sported discount signs, ranging from 30 to 70 percent… and you can pay in monthly installments.
In every store I entered, I was greeted by an average of 3 salespeople who had nothing else to do.
Unemployment rate was just announced on TV as surpassing 10 percent. They expect it to hit 12-13 percent soon… Turkish people are used to dealing with crises, but they are as nervous as those of us living in the US. They keep asking me, ‘how is business in the States?’ They know well: When the States coughs, they catch a cold.
Idil has devised marketing and communication strategies for Fortune 500 companies and non-profit organizations for 20 years. She is the author of 'Implementing Word of Mouth Marketing: Online Strategies to Identify Influencers, Craft Stories and Draw Customers' (Wiley, 2010), as well as numerous industry briefs and articles on online communications.
Idil has been a public speaker on word-of-mouth marketing, women and ethnic minorities’ use of digital communications, and e-CRM. She has been widely quoted in trade journals and newspapers such as CNet news, CBS Market Watch, San Jose Mercury News, Chicago Sun Times, Harvard Business Review, the Financial Times and the New York Times. In 2010, she was selected ‘Digital Communicator of the Year’ by PRNews.
Idil is currently VP of Media Analytics at Nielsen, working with public sector, technology and telecom clients, gauging their advertising and brand communication effectiveness. She also serves on the Ad Council’s Research Committee.
Previously, she was a VP of Client Development at NM Incite – a Nielsen / McKinsey company, identifying and amplifying business opportunities in social media for clients. Prior to her roles at Nielsen, Cakim was a Senior Vice President in the global PR agency Golin’s digital practice and a Director of Burson-Marsteller’s think tank—the Knowledge Development group.
A native of Istanbul, she holds an M.A. in Communication from the Annenberg School at University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. in Sociology from Bryn Mawr College.
View all posts by Idil Cakim