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March 08, 2007

A Very Busy Day

Chandler Troy

Today is the first day that a guest speaker has come to us.  Actually, we were fortunate enough to have a sales team from a subsidiary of Care Guide, including Jim Kerr ’92 and Matt Boston ’05.  They gave a presentation on sales, but more notable the difference in sales and marketing.  I think a lot of us really benefited from these points, because discussion of sales has been quite vague up to this point.  I really liked hearing about the marketing and sales of a product or service to another company and not necessarily directly to the consumer. See a photo album of Thursday activities here.

Later that morning, we packed into the vans once again and this time traveled up to the College Football Hall of Fame.  We first heard from the chairman of the board of economic development for Mishawaka.  A very successful individual, he illustrated one of his most profitable projects.  For years his idea to raffle off a house has been the most successful in all of Indiana. 

Crossing over the partial artificial grass field, we then made our way over to the hall of fame, where we explored the various exhibits.  There was one that quickly became the most popular among the group.  There were three miniature football fields installed where you could kick a field goal, setup a block, and throw a pass to an open receiver.  Of course most of the museum was not interactive.  A 3D impression of every individual who has been inducted into the hall of fame is on display as well as a case of top rivalries and their trophies, and what would that exhibit be without a miniature Monon Bell!

We then met with the director of marketing, Katie Berrettini.  She described to us the implemented marketing strategy as well as current advertisements in place, however what we were really interested in was how they were failing at marketing such a great facility.  We have all those questions and she had most of the answers.  I must recommend this place. 

Picture: Zuber Ahmed, Ben Esbaum, and Tahir Ahmed look at the Monon Bell display in the greatest rivalries section.

A Visit to the College Football Halll of Fame

Justin Raisor

 Today for our Marketing Immersion Program, we traveled to the College Football Hall of Fame, which is located in South Bend, Indiana.  One of the main reasons we were traveling the two hours north was to attain a closer look at a marketing scheme gone bad.  The College Football Hall of Fame is typically identified by these means.  We met with Katie Berrettini who was in charge of marketing the museum.

 After discussing various aspects of marketing along with the strategies that were working/not working for her, I began to understand some of the reasons why their marketing techniques as well as their means for running a successful non-profit organization were not working.  First, there is a lack of enthusiasm by the local citizens of South Bend.  Because the Hall of Fame is funded through tax dollars and hotel/motel tax, many people throughout the city are strong in their beliefs about not supporting the museum.  For some reason or another, they simply do not feel it is something worth giving tax dollars towards.  The museum, which was supposed to be a great tourist attraction for South Bend does not really function through these means.  Because of their location, in between gigantic business buildings, the Hall of Fame is very much out of place.  So, because of the lack of appeal in surroundings with only a convention center connection to the museum, the Hall of Fame lacks appeal.

Finally, since the local community lacks support, Katie Berrettini is forced into targeting a larger audience outside of Indiana.  And, because of the factors previously mentioned, this marketing strategy does not work either, as most people are not attracted towards staying in South Bend solely for tourist purposes.  The College Football Hall of Fame, although struggling to survive, has however showed some improvements through usage of large events.  Eventually, South Bend as a city as well as college football supporters will hopefully accept the museum and give more support.