Chic Spotlight: Zipscene’s Morri McDowell

Chic Spotlight: Zipscene’s Morri McDowell

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Cincy Chic: Are you a Cincinnati native?
Morri McDowell: I am originally from Maysville, Kentucky. I attended college at Morehead State University then moved to Cincinnati upon graduation in 2002.

Cincy Chic: How did you get started with Zipscene?
McDowell: I was first introduced to Zipscene as marketing director of the Exchange nightclub. I was shown how I could use Zipscene to promote all of our events at the club. Immediately, I saw the benefits of utilizing the services the Web site provided to entertainment venues, as well as consumers.

Sameer Mungur, one of the founders, would often come into the club and we would discuss Zipscene. He would ask for my feedback and suggestions. I saw so much potential with Zipscene that I approached Sameer with the idea of working for the company. A couple months later, in March of '06, they called and ask me to join the team! Today, I am Zipscene's Marketing and Sales Manager.

Cincy Chic: Did you think it was going to be as successful as it is today?
McDowell: Yes. From using the product as a client, I realized how the site could easily benefit venues as well as consumers.

As a venue, you can access your own Zipscene business account where you can create/edit your business profile, post events, post photo albums, create special offers and invite customers. Venues gain exposure to thousands of consumers by simply being listed on the site and through the weekly email we send out on Wednesdays.

As a consumer, you can become a Zipscene member for free! Members receive a membership card in the mail that entitles them to hundreds of discounts and special offers at venues all over the city. You can also customize your own calendar and weekly email with events from your favorite venues. A popular feature of Zipscene is the social networking tools. You can invite friends, post pictures, send messages and forward cool events and venues to your friends. You can basically plan your entire social calendar from Zipscene!

Cincy Chic: What’s the best thing about your job?
McDowell: I love my job! I get to meet tons of interesting people at the different venues I work with, as well as the many events I attend.

I look forward to going to work each day and that is in large part due to the people I work with. We are very small at the moment, but have a brilliant group of designers and developers. I am always blown away at what the team is able to accomplish in such a small amount of time.

Cincy Chic: What do you have to say about the power of networking and online information?
McDowell: The power of social networking is limitless. The Internet connects millions of people each day.

It is convenient for people to use the Internet to find entertainment information because most people are in front of a computer at some point in the day. The technology savvy demographic turn to the Internet on a daily basis, making print and other traditional forms of media less popular.

Cincy Chic: What would you say to other women wanting to be more connected in Cincy?
McDowell: First and foremost, I would say to check out! Every event and venue in the city are all right there in one Web site!

Secondly, I would say to not be afraid to break out of the mold and try something new. There are so many great events in this city that people don’t even know about or take advantage of. This is the whole purpose for Zipscene’s creation. People in Cincinnati like to complain about how there is nothing to do, when actually there are tons of great events. Whether you enjoy the arts, theatre, sports, live music, YP events, etc., Cincinnati has something to offer for everyone.

Cincy Chic: What’s on Zipscene’s horizon?
McDowell: Our main focus is to continue to shed light on all of the great events in Cincinnati while also increasing awareness for the Web site.

Cincy Chic: What about you… what do you do in your spare time?
McDowell: I am very fortunate to get to go to so many great events, they keep me very busy! When I am not busy with Zipscene, I am normally spending time with my dog, Willie. He is a 120 lb. Golden Retriever and requires much of my attention. We love to go to the park, to dog parks, hiking, etc.

Much of my spare time is also spent hanging out with my twin sister, Lorri, and my great group of girlfriends. I am very blessed to have such great people in my life!

My family is also a huge part of my life. My hometown is just an hour away so I often find time to go home and spend some quality time with the fam! I also love to spend time with my boyfriend. We love doing dinner and a movie and watching American Idol together.

Cincy Chic: What’s a little known fact about yourself?
McDowell: As I mentioned, I have a twin sister. A little known fact about me is that my mother didn’t even know she was having twins until she was in the delivery room. As the younger twin, I was the surprise! The story goes that my Dad almost passed out when he heard the news.

Cincy Chic: What’s your scene of choice? (favorite bar, venue, park, home, etc.)
McDowell: The answer to this question for me is: ALL OF THE ABOVE! My favorite bars are: Mt. Adams Pavilion, all of the spots at Newport on the Levee, McFaddens, the Stand plus many more. I am always up for trying new places!

My favorite parks are Ault Park and Eden Park. I also love to take my dog to the many dog parks in the city. With that said, I thoroughly enjoy just hanging at home. The nights that I don’t have something going on, I try to relax as much as possible.

Cincy Chic: What has been your greatest accomplishment thus far?
McDowell: Getting a full academic scholarship to college. I feel very fortunate not to have tons of college loans to pay back.

Cincy Chic: Who is your biggest inspiration?
McDowell: Definitely my Mom and Dad. They are the hardest working people I know. My Mom has two full time jobs. Along with being a first grade teacher, she and my aunt also started their own successful company. It is called McDowell Farms Salsa. They hand-make the freshest salsa around. It’s made from Kentucky-grown produce. If you like salsa, you should try theirs! Sorry, shameless plug here: you can pick it up at Rempke Markets and The Party Source or you can check out their Web site at

My Dad is a retired high school principal. However, he didn’t stay retired long. He works as a teacher at Live Oaks and also has over 300 acres of land in Germantown, Kentucky that he farms.

My parents have always been extremely supportive of my decisions. One of the most important things they have taught me is the value of hard work!

Cincy Chic: Any other words for Cincinnati women?
McDowell: Don’t be afraid to venture out of your comfort zone. This city has a lot to offer; we should all take advantage of it!