National Student Advertising Competition – Pizza Hut

In 2014-2015, I participated in an interdisciplinary class that competed in the National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC). The class was made up of twelve graphic design and marketing students. During the year, we researched, created, and pitched an integrated marketing campaign.

The sponsor of the competition, Pizza Hut, was seeking to increase digital sales with millennials (18-34 year olds) and millennials with kids. Our creative team created the brand positioning of “Worth Sharing” and a creative campaign of “Click. Eat. Share.” The combination of secondary research, primary research (focus groups and nationwide survey), creative work, digital development lead us to placing second in the Northwest Region from our campaign, plans book, and presentation. We also got recognized for “Best single ad”, “Most innovative ordering experience”, and “Best digital media campaign”.

My personal role included leading the focus groups as moderator, media planning lead, and presenter for the final competition.

Human-Centered Design for Seniors

During the Spring 2015 semester, I took a cross-disciplinary human-centered design course called “Innovative Ideation”. The course was open to business, graphic, and design students and was taught by three professors for these disciplines. During the course, we learned about the design process, rapid prototyping, and how to use empathy to design better products.

For our final project called “Designing for the Third Act”, we worked in teams of three with students from each discipline and focused were assigned to design a product for older users (ages 65+). To do human-centered design for seniors, we had to start by understanding our users. We did exercises that helped us experience aging by reducing our eye sight and mobility and then interviewed potential users to better understand their needs and areas of “friction”. We decided to interview “mall walkers” at our local mall. We were surprised at how active these seniors were and their dedication to health and fitness. At this same time I read an article called “The Overprotected Kid” and discovered how important play is in our lives. My teammates and I started to question the lack of play, older people have in their lives and started to connect the dots between fitness and play.

Drawing inspiration from Korea, we decided to make exercise equipment for parks that would be fun to use and could be used by the whole community. These equipment would be low-impact and be most beneficial for geriatric health even though it could be used by the whole community. Having exercise equipment in parks, especially near playgrounds, would encourage cross-generation interaction and play as well as support the health of the community.

We branded this park equipment as “Geriatrex” and would market these playgrounds to city park departments and community groups such as The Lions Club. We would get our equipment from outside outdoor equipment manufacturers and be the middle-man between cities and these manufacturers.

Cream of the West – Exporting to China

For my Principles of Marketing course, we were assigned a local business to help them solve a marketing problem. I was placed in a team of three and we were assigned a local company, Cream of the West. Cream of the West has been in business for 100 years and manufactures whole-grain cereal. In order to grow their business and increase sales, they wanted to export their product to Asia.

Originally, we were told to export to Mongolia but initial research revealed that there would be little potential. Therefore, we decided to focus on exporting to China. We researched the cereal / breakfast market in China, determined distributors and retailers, and calculated costs and profits. We also looked at marketing channels for Chinese consumers and what education Chinese consumers would need to start eating whole-grain cereal.

Overall, we found that an export to China would be feasible with an established distributor and to a organic product retailers.

Check out the PDF below to read our final report: