MEET GINGER HARPER DIRECTOR OF SALES AND MARKETING AT ONBP
Some people are always out in front, shaking hands and making new friends everywhere they go. Others tend to bury themselves in strategic planning, working behind the scenes towards the next goal. As Director of Sales and Marketing for the Old National Events Plaza, Ginger Harper spends most of her time doing both.
A native of Evansville, Harper has cultivated her business development skills through relationship building and operational functions across a diverse set of industries. After graduating with a business degree, focused on marketing and entrepreneurship from the University of Southern Indiana, Harper began her career in Event Management with Old National Events Plaza, then known as The Centre. She spent the first part of her career planning and executing some of the venue’s most complex events like the Association of Indiana Mayors (AIM) convention. Next, she moved into a role with the venues culinary team, SAVOR, remaining in a sales and service position. During that time her work was focused on planning events with local clients who required catering services. Harper also traveled to other destinations with team SAVOR, assisting venues with major events like the Honda Grand Prix in St. Pete, FL.
Ginger’s next step was in the non-profit sector, combining her passions for reaching the underserved, planning special events, and marketing them. As the communications and events manager for the Evansville Christian Life Center, Harper planned the organization’s fundraising events and managed marketing operations, messaging the Life Centers’ services to thousands of community members every year. A few years later, Ginger transitioned to a position in retail management, taking on a new set of challenges, shifting to the co-management role of a five/million dollar high-end retailer where she was charged with managing the store’s operational flow as well as team training. In retail management, Harper enjoyed the personal aspects of cultivating deeper client relationships, driving business culture, and motivating her team members. She says the experience truly helped frame her view and strategies for sales and marketing now.
“Retail, when done right, builds a very personal and loyal relationship with the customer. That business development model, putting the client’s need and vision first, translates well to the venue and destination sales. It boils down to the client trusting you to make them look good. When an event is executed well from point of sale to completion, the planner and host organization look like the winners. That means the convention center wins too, and downtown Evansville wins. When our clients feel confident hosting with us, we’ve done our jobs.” Harper says.
After six years of growing sales, developing lasting client relationships, and managing business operations, she had the opportunity to return to the Events Plaza as the sales & marketing manager. Since 2016, Ginger has taken on expanding responsibilities almost yearly. Moving from sales manager to assistant director, interim director and finally the sales and marketing director – all in under 5 years. Harper has keen attention to detail, an eye for identifying market trends and gauging local appetite for new products and offerings. She is well versed at selling not only the Plaza to potential events but also the city and partnering venues. Ginger says she enjoys working with the team at Old National Events Plaza and will continue driving the convention centers growth by hosting successful local and regional events.
When she’s not working, Ginger enjoys spending time with her little one, baking, hiking, biking, and spending time outdoors.”
“For those interested in booking an event at the Old National Events Plaza, please contact Ginger at 812.435.5770 or Gharper@oldnationaleventsplaza.com”