At age 12, senior marketing major Ashley Overmyer was running register and assisting with operations at Once Upon a Child, a children’s resale store in Findlay owned by her mother, Amanda Overmyer. Little did that 12-year-old know that she would later study at the University of Findlay and take the skills gained there to assist her in running social media for multiple businesses.
Fast-forward to today and you’ll see Overmyer at the University, participating in the marketing club and Dana Scholars Program. Outside of school, she is working full time at Style Encore and running social media for all three of her mother’s businesses including Once Upon a Child, Plato’s Closet and Style Encore located side-by-side on the east side of Findlay.
Overmyer spent her freshman year of college in Cincinnati, but soon decided she wanted to be at the University of Findlay where she felt there were many more opportunities for hands-on learning.
“Dr. S. Chris Ward is one of the biggest reasons why I chose to be a business student,” said Overmyer. “At larger universities, like Cincinnati, we didn’t have a lot of hands-on opportunities or connection with professors. Dr. Ward emails me every other week with different opportunities and that alone is huge.”
When she returned to Findlay, Overmyer worked at Plato’s Closet for two years until Style Encore opened. She found the business professional and everyday wear products to be more relatable as a college student and started helping customers pick outfits for interviews.
“The College of Business does a good job of making sure the students know what business professional is and what counts as business casual,” said Overmyer. “I’ve used a lot of the rules I’ve learned through my business classes to make sure I’m dressing people appropriately.”
Overmyer also established a social media presence and spearheaded the “social sales” component of each store due to the demand for online shopping. Since the three stores are reselling items, they do not have multiple sizes or duplicates, which makes online selling nearly impossible. Instead, Overmyer started snapping photos of products such as articles of clothing, shoes, jewelry and bags. She then posted the images to social media with the price and size along with a hashtag #Calltohold and #Calltobuy.
“All of our businesses are franchises, and it’s not mandatory for the stores to have social media, but the successful stores have it,” Overmyer explained. “Social selling is something we started recently. We are one of the few stores that will ship the product to customers or take orders over the phone.”
Overmyer explained that this method of promoting products has been very successful for the businesses, and she has been asked to post more. She now trains some employees to take photos of products and outfits to keep up with social media posting.
This experience and her interest in social media led her to take on a couple clients for social media consulting as well. Although she considers her social media knowledge to be self-taught, she also applies much of what she learned in a consumer behavior course at the University in her job today.
“It was fun to take what I’ve learned between classes and what I do every day to a new business and that’s what inspired me to do a little social media consulting because it just comes easy,” said Overmyer.
Overmyer found an interest in social media and a passion for fashion. Now, she runs a fashion blog and has clients asking her to dress them. She also has over 1,600 followers on Instagram where she regularly posts an outfit of the day.
“I never used to say I was a fashionable person,” Overmyer laughed. “From having a creative mindset and then wanting to put pieces of clothing together as I work in retail, I thought ‘I kind of like this.’”
Overmyer will complete a marketing degree at the University of Findlay at the end of 2017 and looks forward to starting her own social media consulting business and potentially opening a home goods shop and providing interior design.
“I describe marketing as adding value to something because you have to add value to sell something or sell yourself,” she said. “I would tell other people to figure out what part of marketing they love and then go that route.”