Marketing Professor Partners with Ad Council for IMC Practicum
Ronald Goodstein, associate professor of marketing at Georgetown McDonough, partnered with the Ad Council to sponsor a practicum in his Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) class. The practicum focused on creating communications that encourage girls and women to stay interested and involved in STEM.
A practicum is a class where students complete real-world work and gain practical experience. Students worked in groups to create a marketing campaign from an Ad Council brief. This year, students had the choice to build on the She Can STEM campaign’s existing platform or reimagine the campaign. Students learned about various topics in marketing through in-class seminars and then worked on the projects as a semester-long assignment.
“Having a real client truly motivated all the teams to present their best work. I learned how to balance client requests with my own vision, making sure that what my team produced was creative while also meeting the client’s needs,” said Jordyn Jones (B’21).
Jones was able to take the exact tools she learned in class and use it as a part of her marketing strategy, implementing IMC techniques. This type of strategy involves utilizing more than just traditional advertisements, but social media, influencers, sponsorship, and charitable work.
“The classroom is not just an academic lesson,” said Goodstein. “What we do needs to apply to the real world. By combining the seminar with a practicum, students are able to put the lessons in action right away for an organization where they can actually make a difference.”
The goal of the practicum is to directly involve students in devising ways to attract women, especially those in middle school and high school, to pursue STEM fields.
“Working on the campaign and seeing other groups’ responses to the brief also showed me that there are tons of different ways to approach the same problem, so it is important to consider several different sides of an issue to make sure to come up with creative solutions,” said Jones.
The Ad Council is a nonprofit organization that brings together the most creative minds in advertising, media, technology and marketing to address many of the nation’s most important causes. After students pitch their strategies to the Ad Council, the organization may decide to work with a team to explore some of their ideas.
“The Ad Council is excited to collaborate on this IMC practicum. Our Empowering Girls in STEM campaign is all about experimenting and diving right in, and the students have done just that,” said Mary Zost, campaign director at Ad Council.
The current partnership with the Ad Council continues a tradition of Goodstein partnering with organizations to provide real-world examples and experiences in his marketing classes. Goodstein has worked with the ANA Educational Foundation (AEF) to acquire guest speakers for his classes. Six years ago, the AEF helped Goodstein host the CEO of The Martin Agency, an American advertising agency, to talk about his experience creating marketing plans for companies like BMW. It was through the AEF and The Martin Agency that Goodstein connected with the Ad Council to sponsor this practicum.
“Industry speakers help bring the textbook to life for marketing students, and they’re able to see first hand what a career in marketing looks like,” said Sara Parrish, vice president and program manager of AEF. “It’s a rare opportunity for students to meet and learn from industry leaders.”