Students from one of the region’s top universities took part in their very own Dragons’ Den challenge this month as they pitched social media strategies to industry experts in the hope of having their campaign implemented in real life.
A total of 60 students from the University of Birmingham’s MSc Strategic Marketing and Consulting course and MSc Marketing Communications course were put into groups and pitted against each other to win a real life contract and £500.
Organised by marketing agency Big Cat Group students were tasked with developing a three month social media strategy for energy and telecommunications firm Glide.
The strategy was to be aimed at either tenants or landlords and utilise social media platforms to raise brand awareness and further drive Glide sales. Following a briefing session provided by Glide, students were split into six groups and allocated two hours to develop their strategy, a critical path, budget and estimated return on investment before then presenting to a panel from Big Cat, Glide and the universities.
The winning group utilised existing gamification technology to interact with students in the Birmingham area.
James Villareal, managing director of Glide, said: “The calibre of students participating in our university challenge was exceptional. There were so many innovative ideas produced out the session, many of which we may consider for the future.
“Social media is a very difficult subject to teach, purely due to the fast paced nature of technology.
“This session allowed the students to experience planning a campaign with a real-time budget and timeline.”
Wendy Fox-Kirk, MSC projects consultant at the University of Birmingham, said: “We were thoroughly impressed with the way the interactive session went. It’s not every day that students will be given a real-life brief by a prospective client and have the opportunity for the campaign to be implemented.
“We’ve had lots of feedback from participating students who have asked for more sessions like this to take place.
“Following on from the success of the session, we are now looking to roll out similar formats across other courses and modules.”