Kevin Wasie - So, you ask why any college student would give up their precious spring break to study marketing in the middle of Indiana, Well … So do I, because I’m still not sure what made me make that decision. Maybe it was the prospect of getting to know some alumni; maybe it was the thought of learning material not available for study here at Wabash; or maybe it was the idea that if I’m not doing it then someone else will be. Either way, it was worth it.
After spending our Thursday night at the College Football Hall of Fame, we met up with Ken on Friday at 9:00 AM to debrief. As we found out from Katie Barrentini, Director of Marketing at the CFHOF, they were not doing nearly as well as their sales numbers projected. However, after discussing this issue in the debrief, most of us agree that in face of all of the obstacles, the marketing department is doing a fantastic job. It is not easy to deal with a low budget on the hopes of obtaining higher sales numbers.
After debriefing, we were met by the Vice President of Rowland Associates, Tom Vriesman. While at his previous job for Herman Miller, Tom was highly involved in the creation of a brand market strategy for their National Design Centers and Dealers. It was apparent from his presentation how influential the philosophy and vision of the company is on the products and services. For instance, Tom told us how their sales strategy is related to biblical ideology of listening to the client, and then consulting. This philosophy is apparent in every single detail of their dealer locations which are built around finding out what is best for the client, and then helping them select it.
When Tom was finished with his presentation we moved onto the last exercise of the marketing trip, evaluating our own brand image. As Ken says, it is important to know how you will act and what you will say before going into any interview. This may sound very simple, but when we were put to the challenge, we found it to be a difficult task.
Moving onto one more administrative detail, we filled out a survey to gauge the success and/or failures of this year’s trip. In order to improve upon this year, Lu and Ken will look into these results and make necessary changes.