BUSINESS

Those missin’ Oxford can visit website to shop Square stores

Reagan Smith
Oxford Stories
rmsmith5@go.olemiss.edu

Oxford locals Ginger Campbell and Maggie Mistilis had a vision for the Oxford community – provide a way for Oxford Square stores to sell their merchandise online.

Campbell and Mistilis realized after a couple months of research that most Square stores did not have an interactive online presence. After a couple months of trial and error, Campbell and Mistilis launched their online store missinoxford.com in November 2016. The url address is a play on the words Missin’ Oxford.

UM alum Ginger Campbell, co-founder of missinoxford.com, said the website is a “warehouse, shipping and ecommerce marketplace for Oxford merchants, such as the stores on the Square, as well as local art merchants.”

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Ginger Campbell and Maggie Mistilis uploading items to missinoxford.com Photo By Reagan Smith.

Campbell said the site is “… unique to Oxford, Mississippi because it creates a place for Ole Miss alumni, previous residents of Oxford, and even current residents to be able to shop at multiple stores on the Square using one transaction.”

This is the only known website of its kind, according to Campbell, and it lets people “…bring a touch of Oxford to their home no matter how far they are from the Square.”

Campbell, who was once a UM Rebelette, said she returned to Oxford because of it small town feel, and her daughter is a UM cheerleader. Campbell’s husband was offered a job in Oxford, a major incentive to move from Rogers, Arkansas.

Co-founder and previous Oxford School District teacher Maggie Mistilis didn’t attend school at Ole Miss, but she’s a big fan now.

“My husband and son both attended Ole Miss, and I was a teacher in the Oxford School District, so I loved the town,” she said.

After living in Oxford for about 30 years, Mistilis said she watched the small town begin to rapidly expand and more stores built. The student population also increased.

Though many people from all across the nation have moved to Oxford, Mistilis said: “Oxford still was able to keep its small town feel,” causing her to stay here for more than 30 years.

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Inventory at the missinoxford.com warehouse- Photo By Reagan Smith

Campbell and Mistilis met when Campbell moved to Oxford in the summer of 2016. They were walking their dogs and struck up a conversation.

Though they did not know each other in college, they quickly became great friends and decided to start a business together.

“We both wanted to find something to do with our spare time in Oxford, and saw the opportunity to start missinoxford,” Campbell said. “Though building a business has been difficult, we are learning that trial and error is one of the most effective ways to find what works best for our company.”

Missinoxford intern Austin Carter said he learned about the internship via email. “I was scrolling through my emails and spotted one from Scott Fiene, who is the assistant professor of integrated marketing and communications, and it listed multiple internship opportunities. Missinoxford sounded like the most hands-on internship available, so I was much more interested in it.

“When I ended up meeting with Ginger Campbell at High Point, I did not know that her business partner was Maggie Mistilis, who I happened to know from growing up in Oxford and attending the Oxford School District my whole life. I grew up around her family, and her husband was one of my favorite high school teachers, so this internship seemed like the right fit for me.”

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Intern Austin Carter chooses what to advertise on MissInOxford’s social media. Photo By Reagan Smith

On a daily basis, Carter creates emails through MailChimp that are distributed to hundreds of people.

“The target market for missinoxford is mostly Ole Miss alumni because of their unique connection with Oxford, but we also target people who are looking for the types of items we sell on the website. An example of this is, we sell clothing and shoes, and these can be marketed towards a larger group of people than a picture of the Lyceum.”

Carter also posts on all of missinoxford’s social media pages, including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. “I am able to use the connections I have in Oxford to get the word out about missinoxford, as well as to find out about events that are happening around town where we can market the brand.”

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