2024 2024: Marketing majors partner with local New Bedford businesses

2024 2024: Marketing majors partner with local New Bedford businesses
Marketing majors partner with local New Bedford businesses

Senior marketing management class helps NB100! small businesses develop brand identity and create strategic marketing plan

Left to Right: Adam Katz '97, owner of PLAY Arcade, and senior marketing majors Vanessa Pino, Kalvin Garcia, and Kristine Yancey
Left to Right: Adam Katz '97, owner of PLAY Arcade, and senior marketing majors Vanessa Pino, Kalvin Garcia, and Kristine Yancey

This spring, 25 senior marketing majors enrolled in "MKT 441: Marketing Management" functioned as a nonprofit marketing agency, working with local businesses in New Bedford through the NB100! program to create marketing plans for organizations without much of a budget or personnel for advertising.

"I wanted to connect our exceptional marketing students here at UMass Dartmouth with local small businesses in New Bedford," said course instructor, Jeanne Girard. "Most of these businesses are small operations with one owner and no marketing support. I believe it's a valuable experience and connection for both students and local business, and I hope it continues in the future."

PLAY Arcade 

Students in the class helped create a promotional video for PLAY's social media accounts announcing the arrival of a new Jaws themed pinball machine. The video, which has over 5,000 views on Instagram, promoted a tournament for the game's debut and worked in collaboration with an external sponsor, providing the students real-world experience in multiple facets of marketing. 

"As UMass alumni, my wife Lauren and I are honored and excited to be part of UMass Dartmouth's marketing students' case study – helping us better our business with new innovative ideas," said PLAY Owner, Adam Katz '97.

Capri Home Decor

An immigrant-owned business established in late 2022, Capri sells home decor, clothing, and interior design services. Consulting with owners Marie Cupidon and Vanessa Joachim, students in the class worked to outline a brand identity and highlight unique differentiators the business offers.

Oshun Physical Therapy & Pelvic Health

Oshun PT is a private pay company that specializes in helping recent mothers' pelvic floor health. Deciding to make business owner Dr. Justina Perry the main character of the story, the class worked to highlight her renowned research in postpartum stories and courage to make a change in healthcare by breaking away from the standard insurance model.

Aviary Books

Setting up for a soft launch next month, Aviary Books plans to begin community events and book clubs in July of this year. With an "aviary" theme, the bookstore provides the feeling of a sanctuary, which the class leaned into in building brand awareness to reestablish the used book and collectible community in New Bedford.

Banner and Bone Tattoo

A well-established tattoo shop with a three-month waitlist for new customers, Banner and Bone provided the class a different challenge: adding value to the experience. Deciding that the artists make the experience, the class recommended highlighting the artists' personalities and recent achievements so that customers got to know the person behind the ink.

"As a small business, it can be difficult to juggle marketing and promotion while managing the day-to-day tasks of a busy shop," said Banner and Bone Owner Nicole Coogan. "Gaining some outside expertise on how to better promote our work and spread our name gives us a great boost in becoming even more successful and the help of students who are learning new skills and methods to do so is very welcomed."

"This course has helped us understand a day in the life of a marketer," says Vanessa Pino '24. "It reinforced all the tools and business lessons we've learned over the years, and also let us show our creative side. This class has been the final piece that connected my entire college journey and all I've learned here at UMassD, and given me the full confidence that I can be a great marketer after graduation."

This article was written by the students in "MKT 441: Marketing Management." For more information regarding the Charlton College of Business's partnership with NB100! and small businesses across the SouthCoast, contact CCB's Business Community Liaison Jeanne Girard at jgirard@umassd.edu.