Tuesday, 28 March 2017

7 Student Hacks You Will Not Want To Miss!!!

Once more, we find ourselves at the beginning of a new semester and intensive classes have already begun. For most, it’s exciting, but for some returning to student life can be a little stressful! I know there are lots of new students who want to make the most of their time this semester, so to make things a little easier for you to understand, we invited our Program Manager Anna Forte, to share some vital information with you.

Feel free to share this post to all your USYD friends via Facebook or keep it as a favourite page in case you need it one day again. Hyperlinks are used throughout the article, so all you have to do is click for a shortcut to the page on the USYD website. 

1. Hi Anna. Thanks for seeing me. Do you have any important tips to help students make the most of their student life at USYD?

As Master of Marketing students are generally here for just over a year, it’s important to jump in feet first and start to build your network as soon as you can, by engaging with your peers and lecturers, as well as the Business School and broader University communities. There are many opportunities available to students to connect with others, such as events to attend, clubs & societies to join, and many other extra-curricular activities such as sports clubs and facilities, business competitions and volunteering. Don’t forget to take the time to explore Sydney and all it has to offer – try and do one cultural activity every week, for example, go to a museum, art gallery or maybe a coastal hike.

2. There are lots of intensive classes in the Master of Marketing. How can we digest the vast amount of information in such a short amount of time, while maintaining work/life balance?

As a general rule, you should be spending about three hours of self-directed study on each hour of face-to-face/in class time. Make sure that you read the preparatory material prior to classes and have some questions or discussion points prepared for class. Share your experiences with your peers and make sure you are actively engaged with your class. Create a study group with friends and study on campus as much as possible, away from the distractions of home. There are study spaces and learning hubs around campus that allow you to do so, and if you are really keen to focus on your studies there are plenty of productivity apps available which lock you out of distracting websites or phone apps.

In addition, Learning Services are available to all students that range from workshops to online and interactive resources, covering topics from time management to academic writing. If you feel you are beginning to struggle academically, the Business School has a Learning Support Officer who can direct you to appropriate resources – please contact our Program Manger Anna Forte in the first instance if you feel that you require this type of assistance. There are also a number of support services on campus – do not be afraid to ask for help as soon as you identify an issue which is affecting your studies.

3. Is networking essential? Where do we find the portals for information about the upcoming events?

Events are advertised on the relevant Business School and University websites. If there are relevant events in the future, Anna will also help to advertise on the Master of Marketing Blackboard portal. Another suggestion is for graduating students, you should join the Alumni network to keep in touch and be informed of any events or opportunities to remain involved with the Business School.

For the ones that hope to make more connections with students or professors in Business School in other majors, although there is no plan to establish or further explore these relationships by the MMarketing program at this stage. However if there is interest in doing so, this represents a fantastic opportunity for students to be proactive in establishing these connections and to develop and build on their networking skills. Another opportunity for engagement with other Business School students will come from involvement in Peer Mentoring, Clubs & Societies, and other extracurricular activities.

4. Time is limited, do you have any advice for students to become job ready before graduation?

Especially for the international students that want to have more practical work experience in Australia but don’t have the right to work full time.

The Careers and Employability Office (CEO) is an amazing resource unlike any other offered to students elsewhere in the University. The Job Smart program in particular, to which you all should have received an email invitation, is a great starting point in understanding the Australian labour market even if you have had significant work experience internationally. The CEO offers a number of other services and resources, such as resume and interview resources, job vacancy and internship postings, and one-on-one career counselling. This information can be found on Blackboard or the CEO website. Start by identifying your current skillset and comparing this with the graduate attributes that are valued by employers and all postgraduate students should aim to achieve.

5. If students want to join an internship program, but IPP isn’t an option, are there any other opportunities to explore?

As the Master of Marketing is an intensive course, all the units in the program are specialised for the degree and there are no credits available for students to undertake an IPP (Industry Placement Program) component. However, there are many opportunities for students to undertake projects and extracurricular activities via the Clubs and Societies programs, for example 180 Degrees Consulting, Enactus, and the Sydney Marketing Network. Furthermore, there is an internship reward component of the Job Smart program for highly engaged students. 

6. Some students are still confused about the tuition fee’s structure and payment due date, can you tell us how to understand our fee breakdown?

The Tuition fees website is a great resource for estimating your fees (See “Understanding Your Fees”). Fees are based on a standard full-time student enrolment load of 24 credit points per semester or 48 credit points per year (1.0 Equivalent Full-Time Study Load – EFTSL). The Master of Marketing is a 60 credit point degree, so the study load for full time students is 1.25 EFTSL. It is also important to note that fees do increase at the beginning of each calendar year.

Payment due dates differ for domestic and international students: http://sydney.edu.au/students/paying-your-fees/payment-dates.html

7. For those who are planning ahead for graduation, where might we find that information?
The Graduation Ceremony for the graduating cohort is Thursday 25 May 2017 at 9:30am. Graduation information can be found here: http://sydney.edu.au/students/graduation.html. For those students expecting to graduate in Semester 2, 2017 tentative dates can be found here.

Time flies quickly, let’s make the most of it in USYD!

Anna Forte is the Graduate Business Program Manager looking after the specialist Masters programs at the University of Sydney Business School. She began working for the University in 2005 in a research capacity, and has since held various roles in executive support, research administration, and program management. 

About the Blogger:
Bowie Chen is from China and a current student in the Master of Marketing program at the University of Sydney Business School. Bowie has several years’ experience working in FMCG marketing, media (especially TV station), and consulting firms.

Friday, 24 March 2017

Food for Thought

As the winner of the ‘Discipline of Marketing Prize for the Best Consulting Project Proposal’, Donna Hudson shares her experience working with WWF-Australia. Currently in her second semester of the Master of Marketing program 2017, Donna had to opportunity to assist them with working towards one of their key goals of drastically reducing food waste before 2021. 

Consulting Project for Reducing Food Waste

Most of you will have heard of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). As one of the world’s largest and most experienced independent conservation organisations, WWF works to tackle major global and local issues such as; the environment, ocean, climate, and more recently- food. Food is the division of which this project is based. 

As an individual I am passionate about the environment and conscious of the adverse effects that we, as humans, are creating. However, prior to commencing this project I was unaware of the huge impact that food waste has on the environment.

I am now eager to educate others and assist WWF achieve their goal to drastically reduce waste before 2021.

Food Facts 
  • The amount of food waste each year around the world is enough to feed three billion people. That’s 41.25% of the world’s population!
  • In Australia, more than half of all food waste occurs at the point of consumption. Yes that’s right, we are the biggest cause!
  • In Australia alone we waste a third of the food that is produced and yet an astonishing 2 million Australians seek food relief each year. 
  • We are likely to throw away one in five bags of groceries each week, that’s $8 billion worth of food each year. 
  • Research suggests that we don’t seem to be concerned about the issue of food waste and its effects.
  • The biggest food wasters youths between the ages of 18-24 years, households with a combined income of above $100k, and young families. 

So What Can We Do About All This Waste? 

The above is stipulated from existing research conducted. However, compared globally, it was identified that food waste data available in Australia is lacking. Therefore as part of my project, I intend to complete vital research that will assist WWF with going forward to reach their overall goal. 

Research includes in-depth interviews, focus groups and surveying WWF’s supporter community.

Education Is Key

The overall objective for this project is to change the attitude and behaviours of Australian consumers towards food waste by educating consumers, utilising existing channels and partnerships, whilst exploring new ones.

The challenge is AWARENESS. To achieve the objective, Australian consumers need to be made aware of the issues of food waste and WWFs involvement with this issue. More importantly, they need to care about and understand the issues of food enough to change their habits. 

After all, changes are sparked by an individual’s understanding of an issue. I hope to make a big change in Australia.

Thank you for reading.

Donna Hudson is originally from the UK but now happily resides in Australia and a current student in the Master of Marketing program at the University of Sydney Business School. Donna’s background has always been in marketing across various industries and she has an evident passion for the environment.

Donna’s top tip for MKTG6209 students:

Are you a student who has not yet completed the consulting project, or thought about which type of organisation you would like to approach? 

Don’t forget about all of the amazing non-profit organisations here in Australia who would relish on the opportunity for you to help them keep making a difference. The consulting project requires you to use your skills and knowledge to identify a marketing issue within an organisation and see it through to realisation. 

NGO’s are fantastic organisations full of passionate and inspiring people. 

Make a difference where it matters!

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

It’s Time To Get With The Program

Welcome to the future, fellow marketers! 

Hi, I’m Alyce! As one of your new ‘Marketing Matters’ bloggers, I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce myself, and my fellow bloggers- Bowie and Hazel. We want to welcome you to the University of Sydney, Business School’s official blog- your go-to source for all things marketing related.

It’s always good to keep up-to-date. There are exciting times ahead for all of us here in the Master of Marketing program. For this reason, I want to encourage each and every one of you to get involved and enjoy all that the pr`ogram has to offer. Don’t just sit on the sidelines. Interact, interplay and keep connected with each other via every platform that’s available to you. 

If you haven’t already, start reading and commenting on the blog. Connect with each other on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, the Facebook group- Master of Marketing USYD, and don’t forget to update your student profile on Blackboard.

So what do we have to take-away from the course to date?

Our industry is fast becoming respected as more of a science than an art. We know that marketing is complex and it requires a huge breadth of knowledge, a complex skill set and of course some ingenuity. We are pretty much the magician’s apprentices, being trained in the art of foresight.

However, unlike fortune-tellers we not only have to read the numbers, but make strategic decisions based on more than just guesswork.

The issue here is that not everyone we encounter in the workplace has caught on to the fact that marketing is integral to the performance of the whole company. Even though it’s an out-dated view, individual departments are still perceived as being separate to one another. Many forget that these cogs are all part of the same machine.

So… am I talking about Internal Marketing?

After spending the weekend in class, I’d hope that at least the current students are familiar with ‘Internal Marketing’. For the rest of our readers, well, I’ll give you a refresher just in case you have forgotten.

With Internal Marketing, employees are regarded as ‘internal customers’ who are just as valuable as ‘external customers’. The goal is to align every aspect of a company’s internal operations to provide maximum value to customers.

Perhaps some of you have already found this out the hard way, but believe it or not, the biggest hurdle is the implementation. Ideally in this situation, every single person, no matter his or her role, is responsible for internal marketing. 

But what if everyone doesn’t want to get out board? Well, that’s when things start to go pear shaped.

I know there are those who are resistant to change, so I keeping in spirit with Stan and Kim, I thought I would leave you with this meme to enjoy.

Have you ever encountered resistance to an internal marketing campaign you were involved in implementing? Use the comment button to share you stories below.

Alyce Brierley
Current student in the Master of Marketing program at the University of Sydney Business School.

Friday, 17 March 2017

Yeezy Boosts - The perfect example of Celebrity Endorsement

It’s only fitting that since my previous blog talked about Influencer Marketing that today I’ll talk about Celebrity Endorsements - particularly in the fashion and sneaker industry.

In December 2013, Kanye West left Nike for Adidas. Fast forward to today, Adidas is riding a buzz-wave of sneaker and pop-culture. It is both directly and indirectly tied back to Kanye and his Yeezy clothing and shoe line. Adidas was set on using a different endorsement technique from Nike.

Instead of limiting the creative control of product development, Adidas saw this collaboration as a ‘joint venture’. It is to give the celebrity partner the sense of having creative input and strategies. This includes them having a say in the go-to market strategy and tactics.

If you ask any ‘sneakerhead' about the coolest ‘kicks’ around, the answer will very likely be the Yeezy Boost 350. In 2015, the Adidas Yeezy Boosts won the FNAA Shoes of the Year Award, another evidence of the success of the Kanye West and Adidas Originals collaboration. It is no surprise that Adidas sales increased by 14%.

How exactly did the Yeezy Boost 350s sell out in 12 minutes and become the most coveted sneaker out at the moment?

1. Target the right celebrity for endorsement to make sure the product is always in the media’s eye.

Celebrity endorsement is one of the most powerful word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing tool available and generates engagement amongst today’s tech-savvy, trend-conscious youth. The target audience of the Yeezy collection are fashion-conscious millennials with high purchasing ability to keep up with the trend. And the way to keep up with trends are by keeping up with celebrities on their social media feeds.

Image: Faded Fashion

2. Kanye personally endorses the brand, wearing his design in concerts, award events and what not.

Kanye is highly regarded as a celebrity fashion icon. He has a huge following for his provocative views and tastes. Weeks prior to the launch of a new collection of Yeezy, Kanye proudly wears his personal design to events where paparazzi and fans are eager to catch a glimpse of the sneakers. This is a way to build up the hype way before the official launch.

Image: Footwear News

3. Limited number to build exclusivity and hype.

Yeezy Boost might be the perfect definition of demand exceeding supply. With each seasonal release of the Yeezy Boost, only a limited number of pairs are made available worldwide. The ‘average consumer’ can’t simply hope to walk into the nearest Adidas store to purchase a pair.

Time and effort are needed to keep up with the pre-launch news and the actual launch date. Getting a pair at a retail price would require you to count on your lucky star. This exclusivity generates tons of WOM around the product because everyone will likely be talking about trying to get it or how they got it.

Image: Footlocker UK

Friday, 10 March 2017

The Importance of Influencer Marketing

A recent study revealed that 84% of marketers plan on executing at least one influencer marketing campaign in 2017. But what exactly is influencer marketing? Well to put it simply, it’s that middle territory between a legitimate testimonial and mentioning a product subtly, which is usually done in passing.

Not to be confused with celebrity endorsements, influencer marketing creates word-of-mouth advertising using people that are trusted in their industry/social circle. With this marketing strategy, influencers are building up the brand’s image in the minds of their followers. Whereas celebrity endorsements attaches the fame of a celebrity to a brand or product so that they are associated with that product — as a result people want to buy that product. Both strategies use well-known people to influence the target market. But the way they are executed and how they influence their target market is very different. Today we’ll focus on influencer marketing.

Influencers are specialists in what they do. Different from celebrities, they build communities around themselves in a very niche space. For example, when a brand sends food bloggers their newest cake offering as part of an influencer campaign, the intent is not from their fame but rather the true recommendations within the targeted community.

But why Influencers?

Influencers are deemed to be more authentic as they are perceived to be creators of the entire message. From beginning to end, the message is considered theirs and that lends it a certain credibility. Go and scroll through your Instagram feed now — You can still see your favourite influencers representing products and promoting brands, all while still staying true to their unique voice and story.

Why influencer marketing?

Consumers trust recommendations from word-of-mouth more often than the brand itself. It makes sense if you think about it on a more personal context. Let’s put it into a scenario — You don’t usually trust a person at a party who comes up to you and brags about themselves, but you often believe your mutual friend who vouches for that person. An influencer is the mutual friend connecting the brand with the target audience.

What brands will get in return is targeted exposure to the right consumer, one who is already interested in that particular area and will likely be paid attention. Speaking of paying attention — 47% of online consumers use ad blockers nowadays, giving brands even more reason to put their money behind influencers instead, as they are the ones holding everyone’s attention.

Social media influencers exist on all the primary social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat. These platforms have given birth to Internet famous celebrities and influencers. They are becoming more and more savvy about how to properly collaborate with brands for their own creative campaigns.

In 2017, the use of influencer marketing is rising. Collaborations between brands and influencers are only to increase. It’s only a matter of time before social media shifts into a social marketplace.