Home > Uncategorized > How I Became More “Mad” Than Don Drapper

How I Became More “Mad” Than Don Drapper

This project drove me absolutely mad with the amount of work I had committed myself to, but in those countless moments working on it, it was definitely one of my favorite and most memorable learning experiences. It was almost a year ago for my Advanced Marketing Creative Strategy course (yes, I’m a marketer, and I know we occupy the dark side of communications). In this project, the deans of Daniels came to our class, dreadfully tired of how unoriginal and un-compelling the marketing communications for DU’s business school were. Unsatisfied with what the Office of Communications was producing, they decided invest in good ol’ crowdsourcing with our class, and effectively hire us as their advertising agency and do a full redesign on how Daniels communicates to its various stakeholders (parents, students, prospective students, alumni, etc.).

Like Davidson explains, the Deans of Daniels in this instance understood the three vital elements necessary for successful crowdsourcing. They knew that difference and diversity would be the best bet in solving this problem so they had us chose smaller teams to “compete” for the bid. They also allowed for all possibilities to be wide open for solving their communication woes, and that students most effected by Daniels position in the academic marketplace as well as a thirst for good resume entries that we would deliver quality solutions.

This project texted every skill we had learned up until that point in marketing and in any other subject. It required strategic thinking to and diverse backgrounds to get the job done properly. For example in our group alone, we had someone who was an expert at art direction, one in media planning, and the other in copy writing. We had to establish a proper target market for the redesign, create a compelling message Daniels would want to deliver and take pride in, and place that message in the proper venues to be seen. We knew that most college communications look exactly alike and preach the same things: academics, community, boring crap in other words. We went in a completely different direction and showed that the competitive advantage of Daniels wasn’t that it created good workers, but that it created people who started something real and successful. We also gave it a sexy look, and made sure it used 21st century media tactics (because that’s ultimately where our audience is. Looking back, the skills needed to complete such a project are suggested by Davidson as measures for 21st century learning standards.

Needless to say our group won the bid and our work could be seen in different Daniels events throughout last year. I think a good boss-level project could be much like the one I did last year. This time however, what if we played the role of network execs and took over KVDU! No one listens to it anyway, so there’s abundant risk-free opportunity. We could crowdsource and come up with programming and content the audience of our choice would find valuable, and devise ways to make it reach them. We could also see what increase in advertising revenue our changes could bring! 😉

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Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,
  1. September 21, 2011 at 5:13 am

    I get the impression from reading this that you’re an “all or nothing” type who fully commits to your endeavors. I look forward to seeing the rest of your work through the course. Great read – full credit

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