Contact: Mike Uehlein,

Marketing Leaders to Deliver Expertise and Insight on Critical Data and Marketing Concerns

Today, the Data & Marketing Association (DMA) announced that three marketing innovators from 1-800-Flowers, Hershey’s, and IBM are slated to deliver keynotes presentations at &THEN, DMA’s Annual Event (October 8-10 in New Orleans). The newly-announced keynote speakers include:

  • Michelle Peluso – Chief Marketing Officer, IBM
  • Amit Shah – Chief Marketing Officer, 1-800-FLOWERS
  • Ronalee Zarate-Bayani – Head of Global Integrated Marketing Communications and Digital Advancement, Hershey’s

In addition to diverse career backgrounds and deep technical knowledge, these game-changers are also pairing data with leading-edge technology to drive relevancy and improved customer experience across all channels. 1-800-FLOWERS has partnered with IBM in developing a Watson-powered concierge to glean insights from the company’s data. Hershey’s leverages Internet of Things sensors in its manufacturing to boost efficiencies through machine learning.

“&THEN puts forward the innovators who are advancing the data and marketing industry,” said Tom Benton, Data & Marketing Association CEO. “This event does not sidestep the tough questions; it arms attendees with solutions that can be implemented to solve critical business challenges. From artificial intelligence to the shifting omnichannel landscape, these speakers will tackle data and marketing’s pressing concerns on the &THEN stage through their unique expertise, backgrounds, and perspectives.”

Michelle Peluso (Chief Marketing Officer, IBM) oversees all global marketing and brand initiatives, strategy, and execution for IBM, including leading thousands of marketing professionals around the world. With nearly 20 years of C-Suite experience at Gilt, Citigroup, and Travelocity, Peluso brings deep, customer-centric marketing and leadership experience as IBM accelerates its transformation into a Cloud and Cognitive platform company.

Amit Shah (Chief Marketing Officer, 1-800-FLOWERS) presides over a set of brands — 1-800-FLOWERS, The Popcorn Factory, Cheryl’s Cookies, Fannie May candies, Stock Yards steaks, Harry & David fruit and more — in which mastering complexity is a key success driver. A noted mobile marketing innovator, Shah leads the company’s innovation efforts across mobile commerce, social commerce and more. In an ever more digital age, Amit’s brands seek to deliver delight in the form of physical products — flowers, candy, fruit — given in a seamless and frictionless manner.

Ronalee Zarate-Bayani (Head of Global Integrated Marketing Communications and Digital Advancement, Hershey’s) is committed to establishing modern marketing excellence, creating compelling communications, and building enhanced digital capabilities. Prior to Hershey, Zarate-Bayani worked in multiple leadership roles at Visa with a focus on leveraging the power of digital to create effective consumer marketing campaigns. Prior to Visa, Zarate-Bayani cultivated her zeal for brand building through various marketing roles with Taco Bell that started in Brand Marketing, then Brand Communications and culminated in leading the Digital Team through marketing transformation.

Today’s additions to the &THEN lineup follow a previously-announced address from Alan Schulman, Deloitte’s Chief Executive for Creative and Content. One of the industry’s leading voices in digital storytelling, creative & content marketing, Schulman comes to &THEN as consultancies have moved into the space traditionally occupied by marketing and advertising agencies.

&THEN 2017 will take place over two and a half days, October 8-10 in New Orleans. Additional speakers and programming will be announced in the coming months. Media interested in attending can contact Mike Uehlein at

About DMA ( Founded in 1917 and driving the data and marketing agenda for a full century, the Data & Marketing Association (“DMA”) champions deeper consumer engagement and business value through the innovative and responsible use of data-driven marketing. DMA’s brand-leading membership is made up of over 1,400 organizations who are today’s innovative tech and data firms, marketers, agencies, service providers and media companies. By representing the entire marketing ecosystem—demand side and supply side—and engaging more than 100,000 industry professionals annually, DMA is uniquely positioned to convene and guide the industry to bring win/win solutions to the market, and ensure that innovative and disruptive marketing technology and techniques can be quickly applied for ROI.

DMA advances the data-driven marketing industry and serves its members through four principal pillars of leadership: advocating for marketers’ ability to responsibly gather and refine detailed data to identify and fulfill customer needs and interests; innovating to bring solutions forward to the data & marketing ecosystem’s most vexing challenges; educating today’s members of the data & marketing ecosystem to grow and lead marketing organizations in the ever-increasing omnichannel world; and connecting industry participants to stay current, learn best practices and gain access to emerging solutions through &THEN – the largest global event for data-driven marketing – and DMA’s portfolio of other live events.