See the Lisa Frank Hotel Room; Are Stadium Naming Rights Worth It?: Thursday’s First Things First

Plus, what's changed at Papa John's

Lisa Frank and Hotels.com recreated millennials' childhoods with this throwback room. Hotels.com
Headshot of Jameson Fleming

Welcome to First Things First, Adweek’s new daily resource for marketers. We’ll be publishing the content to First Things First on Adweek.com each morning (like this post), but if you prefer that it come straight to your inbox, you can sign up for the email here.

’90s Style Icon Lisa Frank Brings Nostalgia to Travel With Rentable Dream Room

The picture says it all, right? Anyone who grew up in the ’90s (raises hand, reluctantly) remembers the troves of Lisa Frank gear for school. The Trapper Keepers, folders and pencils were inescapable in grade school. Now, Hotels.com is channeling that nostalgia with its latest stunt. The room, which books for $199 a night, is available starting Oct. 11.

Read more: Retail reporter Lisa Lacy did a deep dive into the strategy behind turning every millennial’s fourth grade classroom into a hotel room.

Top of Mind: What’s Changed at Papa John’s Since the Ouster of the Pizza Chain’s Founder

It’s been a wild 15 months for Papa John’s. After the chain’s founder resigned over a number of scandals, the company was left to pick up the pieces. Sponsorships fell apart, and sales dropped five consecutive quarters. The chain has executed several maneuvers to right the ship, but what is Papa John’s doing internally to fix the diversity and inclusion issues that surfaced under John Schnatter?

Read more: In the latest edition of Adweek’s Top of Mind series, Victoria Russell, chief of diversity, equity and inclusion at Papa John’s, explains what’s changed over the last year.

From the archives: Go inside the creation of Papa John’s first campaign, which focused on diversity and inclusion, following Schnatter’s departure.

Insecure’s Issa Rae Is the Next Voice of Google Assistant

Now that Samuel L. Jackson has staked his claim as the voice of  Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant has tapped Insecure star (and former Adweek cover star) Issa Rae to make a cameo. What’s more is the move marks a departure from male-dominated voice. Insecure fans are in for a special treat as the Issa-themed Google Assistant answers questions about Issa’s love interest Lawrence and her rap skills.

Read more: Google Assistant features Issa Rae cameo in push for more celebrity voices.

Is Putting Your Name on a Stadium Worth the Investment? SoFi Thinks So

For $400 million over 20 years, would you put your company’s name on a stadium? What if that stadium is going to host the 2022 Super Bowl, the 2023 College Football Playoff and the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2028 Olympics? What if that stadium is in the country’s second largest media market? Suddenly, that $400 million number sounds a bit more reasonable.

Read more: Reporter Ryan Barwick did an extensive analysis about stadium naming rights, speaking to SoFi’s CEO and a number of experts to break down every angle of a deal like SoFi’s.

Just Briefly: The Rest of Today’s Top News and Insights

Ad of the Day: Money Talks as Climate Change Deniers Learn How Much They Could Save by Ditching Fossil Fuels


Among scientists, 97% agree that humans are causing climate change and global warming. That’s about as close to a verified fact as the scientific community gets. So why is there still a debate about climate change?

A distrust of scientists—or of the media giving a voice to those scientists—is usually at the heart of a climate change denier’s beliefs. But a new campaign by 180LA for the Geothermal Exchange Organization, a nonprofit trade association promoting geothermal energy, is successfully convincing climate change deniers to move away from fossil fuels.

Adweek Executive Mentor Program

Interested in learning from some of the brightest minds in marketing like Citi global chief brand officer Carla Hassan, American Express CMO Elizabeth Rutledge and Denny’s chief brand officer John Dillon? Apply to be a mentee today.

Today’s mentorship advice comes from Mary Beech, CMO, Kate Spade, on being a great mentor as a leader

My key mantra is to hire the smartest people I can to every single role; ideally, they’re smarter than me. Then I just make sure that I’m supporting them. Not in their direct area of expertise, which I don’t have experience in, but in providing a clear vision, providing clear objectives for what we need to do as a business and as a brand, and then removing any barriers that they have in terms of meeting those objectives and that vision.

Workplace Tip: Thinking Through a Scenario During Reviews

Scenario: A strong employee is scuffling lately. How should you use a review to get the person back on track?

Rachel Hadley, president, Kite Hill PR

A review should always be motivating to the employee. It’s an opportunity to focus on the whole year and everything that’s been accomplished. If a strong employee hits a rough patch, use a review to allow the employee to share his/her point of view. Are they still happy in their role? Are they still learning? Do they feel valued? What more can the company do to be a great employer? If there is one thing they would change about the company, what would it be? Sometimes employees just want to be heard. Also, sometimes strong employees need to move to another company to have more opportunities, and that’s something that can certainly be discussed in an open forum. Either way, it’s important to address the rough patch and do whatever you can to get them back on track.

Jessica Kassel, head of talent, Heat

I’d advise starting the conversation by showing empathy and that you’re genuinely interested in understanding what might be causing this change in performance. Whether personally or professionally, you’re there to help them, but it’s important to talk about it. Share the feedback constructively, rooting it in positive psychology, and ensure you’re also identifying ways to help that employee continue to play to their strengths as that is when they feel most confident. You should document this feedback and next steps for course correcting, and suggest timing for checking in again on progress.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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