Dec. 20, 2005
Morningside College students have been connecting with Siouxland businesses and non-profit agencies to gain real-world experience in the areas of business, marketing, and economics.
Thirty-six students of Morningside’s “Principles of Advertising” class made their final marketing presentations to a group of eleven local businesses and non-profit organizations on Dec. 12 and Dec. 19. After a semester of research and planning, teams of students designed marketing and advertising campaigns for the businesses. The goal of the project was to provide hands-on experience for students while offering potentially useful marketing ideas and solutions for the organizations.
Businesses participating in the project this year included Carlos O’Kelly’s, Junior Achievement (JA) of Siouxland, Inc., Miles Inn, Plaza Bowl, Ronald McDonald House, Sioux City Growth Organization (SCGO), Sioux City Public Museum, Siouxland Humane Society, Siouxland Y, and Morningside’s Academic and Cultural Arts Series and Center for Entrepreneurship Education.
Key elements the students considered in the marketing plans included target markets; brand research and results; analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT); media and creative strategies; creative execution; and a media plan.
“Part of our target audience is young professionals, so we wanted to get input from college students on how to best market to that demographic,” said Lisa Burkholder, vice-president of SCGO.
The organization was looking for ways to increase public awareness of Sculpt Siouxland, its outdoor sculpture initiative designed to increase foot traffic in downtown Sioux City and promote interactive art to Siouxland youth.
The marketing presentation for the Sculpt Siouxland project included redesign of the map and brochure currently used by SCGO, suggestions for radio and television ads, and proposals for a new tagline and logo design.
Steve Hansen, director of the Sioux City Public Museum, was particularly excited to be working with students on a new advertising campaign.
“It’s a very timely thing for us because as we look at moving into a new facility, we’re also looking at a capital campaign and marketing for our new location,” said Hansen. (above,Brianna Blake and Jenna Rehnstrom make their advertising pitch to Steve Hansen of the Sioux City Public Museum.)
The marketing plan for the museum included compilation of research data from surveys conducted by the students, design of a new four-color brochure, several options for a new logo design and letterhead, and creation of the tagline “Discover History: Create Your Own.” The students also proposed designs for a flyer and advertisements promoting the museum’s participation in “Fun Fest,” Sioux City’s annual New Year’s Eve celebration.
“The expectation was high going into this and they’ve done great work here,” said Hansen, who is a Morningside alumnus. “We have a staff meeting this week and I’ll be taking these materials to that meeting. It’s certainly conceivable that the museum could enter into a long term relationship with college for this type of thing.”
Becky Meyer, president of JA of Siouxland, Inc., was also looking for ways to increase the public’s awareness about her organization and its upcoming 35th anniversary celebration.
“It’s fun to have new ideas. The students did the appropriate research. They redesigned our newsletter to incorporate the 35th anniversary and suggested billboard ideas, all using the theme ‘Celebrate’,” said Meyer. “The ideas they shared are things we should be able to do. They were realistic.”
Dr. Pam Mickelson, professor of business and economics, teaches the advertising class and directs the project. This is the eighth year that students in the class have presented their marketing strategies to Siouxland businesses.