UC Marketing Students Collaborate for Cincinnati Recreation Commission

Local brand engagement agency Northlich partnered with UC Lindner College of Business students on behalf of their client, the Cincinnati Recreation Commission (CRC), in a competition to build a campaign that would ultimately raise awareness and inspire city advocates to increase financial support of the Cincinnati Recreation Foundation, which raises funds to supplement the programs offered by the CRC.

Eight teams competed in a 360-degree marketing campaign that kicked off in October when Northlich, an agency that specializes in changing customer behavior, and CRC attended the class of Elaine Skeldon, adjunct professor of marketing Sheldon structured her fall advertising course as a real-world training ground for future marketers. Students were directed to create an advertising plan based on objectives and goals set by the client.

“The goal is to bring real world experience to the class so that all the learning from the textbook and lecture comes to life,” Skeldon says.

The Cincinnati Recreation Commission was thrilled with the results and are planning to implement several ideas generated from student-driven advertising plans, says  Tammy Monroe, vice president, director of public relations and word of mouth at Northlich.

Winning team Urban Vision included marketing majors (pictured) Deja Amato, Paloma Suter, Sarah Deist, Saffiya Ismail, Adam Fearing, Sean Hooey, Samantha Flore and Daniel Vorderbrueggen.  The team created an advertising plan based on the “big idea of enrich a life, empower a community,” Skeldon says.

Their plan, Skeldon says, “closely aligned with the target audience and was a great mix of traditional and digital, such as iphone apps and downloads from the web site. Their plan also had a sponsorship program and in-store strategy.”

Team member Daniel Vorderbrueggen, BBA ’12, said his team’s hard work paid off and that the project bridged a gap between the textbook and practical experience.

“I am truly happy we were all equally able to make such an impact to the CRC; it was a very worthwhile experience and will be an important practical addition to our resumes,” he says.

“From the client perspective, CRC benefited from fresh and relevant thinking for how to approach their marketing challenges,” Monroe says. “This real-world experience for the students also resulted in practical ideas for the CRC.”

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