Oct 292007
Authors: Cece Wildeman

Students involved in the marketing team of CSU’s Special Topics Seminar are preparing to pitch a marketing campaign to Honda this December.

Using unconventional marketing techniques to market the 2008 Honda Accord Coupe, students involved in the campaign want people to see the car in a different light, as a new and unique vehicle.

“We want to show people that this isn’t your mom’s Accord,” said Stephanie Sadler, a senior marketing major in the class.

For the purpose of the project, Special Topics Seminar is referred to as Cre8tive Communications, the student-run marketing agency. The agency is split into different departments to perform tasks such as advertising, marketing research and public relations. They and seventeen other institutions are competing to create an effective marketing campaign for Honda Motors. The top three campaigns will be chosen to travel to California in December to present their ideas to Honda National.

The main event for Cre8ive Communications will take place on Nov. 7, where students will be presenting to Honda officials information and advertising about what the class has been doing. Perks will include prizes, free food and a chance to view the new and unique Honda Accord Coupe in a whole new way.

The campaign is not about persuing people to buy the car, says Kristina Walshauser, a senior marketing and managing major. Right now, she says, they just want to raise awareness about their positioning statement: “fearless individualism.” The events they are holding are designed to do exactly that.

Handing out pizza for breakfast and sunglasses at night in Old Town is an example of this statement, says Sadler and Walshauser, as it makes people think about individualistic marketing techniques.

The class is a semester long, and all 18 students involved had to apply to enroll. They have a $2,500 budget to create a marketing campaign, but have received donations and sponsorships from companies in Fort Collins and some of the students’ parents. So far, they have received $3,300 in donated cash for their campaign and prizes to give out at their events.

“Students had to successfully complete an application process to be admitted into the course, and from day one they have been united in their focus to create a ground-breaking campaign for Honda,” said Ken Manning, Special Topics Seminar professor, in a press release.

This is the eigth time Manning has taught this class, but says each group is a little bit different. He said the students are really coming together as a group as the semester goes on.

“Not only do they [the students] get to practice the skills they learn in class, they learn a lot about themselves,” Manning said.

Senior reporter Cece Wildeman can be reached at news@collegian.com

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