At the Office - Laura Waniuk

By Christina Sims

This week, I'm happy to interview Laura Waniuk, the senior marketing manager for Cryptozoic! She's the mastermind behind many of our large convention events, so if you've ever been impressed by our booth space at Gen Con, PAX, or San Diego Comic-Con, she's the woman to thank! What goes on behind the scenes in bringing Cryptozoic to all of these awesome events? Read below and find out!

Name : Laura Waniuk

Title : Senior Marketing Manager

Preferred Title: Brainiuk

Tell us a little bit about what a senior marketing manager does at Cryptozoic.

I manage the strategy and execution for consumer sales events.

In English!

That was actually pretty good! I work on consumer shows like Gen Con or San Diego Comic-Con where I figure out what our available space is and plan demos and staffing. I also decide what our brand identity is in regards to signage, banners, and any other promotions that we do. Besides events, I also work on marketing and product information on the Cryptozoic website and Cryptozoic Facebook page. I am taking on some product development as well.

Marketing is obviously very important to Cryptozoic because it helps us get our name out there to people who may not know what we are all about. When people walked by our store at San Diego Comic-Con and saw all the awesome window clings and decorations - that was your brainchild!

Yeah! It's also planned out with the brand managers internally as well as working with licensors who are great at keeping their brand intact. They want to work with us to help promote our games since it helps their property. It's great because it helps us appeal to our customers; we have so many awesome products so it helps us decide where and how these promotions land.

Let's imagine a situation where you've got a 5000 square foot room. If you were to build it into a vision of what Cryptozoic was all about and had unlimited resources and creative direction, what would you do?

Oh geez. I would probably have it be a super hip & trendy Las Vegas style nightclub! I'd have really cool murals and lighting and amazing drinks named after our products. And I'd probably have some servers dressed appropriately to our products, have demos, and have a big dance party! And then we'd have a lot of snacks.

We love snacks! What food embodies Cryptozoic?

We eat a lot of bagels. *laughs* I think the thing that disappears the most when it's in the kitchen is beef jerky. I never see it. Oh , and goldfish crackers.

My bad. I eat a ton of goldfish crackers.

Oh I know. And then sometimes we get those really good animals crackers and someone just takes the whole bag. So rude!

If we had a cubicle contest, yours would probably be in the top three. You have a sweet theme and you obviously love the color purple. Tell us a little bit about this home away from home.

I do enjoy a little purple. Okay, I've gone a little crazy. I'm not sure when that started. I don't think it really began until I was an adult. I have a purple lamp, keyboard cover, laptop cover, rearview mirror on my monitor so I can see people creeping up behind me … I'm not good at paying attention to that since Dan Clark has been a super creeper lately and he is freaking me out. I also have a standup desk since I have a lot of energy, so it's really good health wise. Moving around more is very helpful. I have a lot of pictures of my dogs, which I think is a little weird. In a lot of them they are wearing clothes. I really relate to Wonder Woman, so I have her in here. I'm not quite as voluptuous, but I'm working on that.

So did you start this new fitness club craze at Cryptozoic?

Yeah, I did. I think it was because a couple of us sort of started in on eating better and started playing soccer on Fridays. Some people were interested in doing extra exercises. It's really good for team building because we give each other crap; we hassle each other and get the blood flowing and get out excess energy. We do push-ups, lunges, and sit-ups. I have this new sheet of exercises so we're prepared. It's pretty fun.

So going back to the marketing thing: What are the next few events Cryptozoic plans on having a presence at?

L: Right now I'm working on Toy Fair which is a business/sales show in February in New York. Then I'm working on PAX East. We just had a meeting about Gen Con in August. We try to plan ahead as far as we possibly can. San Diego Comic-Con is such a big show, so that will also be one of our next shows down the line.

Should we look forward to something similar to what we had last year with the awesome off-site space just for us?

We're discussing having the retail space again or a booth. It's yet to be decided.

Thanks for taking the time to talk with me, Laura! You really organize some amazing things for Cryptozoic and I know everyone is excited to come visit our booth at upcoming events! Want to hear a little more from Laura? Don't miss her guest spot on the Cryptozoic BOBcast, episode 2!