The goal of this project is to become knowledgeable on a topic of importance in consumer analysis, to become familiar with some of the literature in marketing and other business disciplines, and to use your skills critically in presenting an oral and written analysis of your project. Your overall presentation time is 15 minutes. The projects are chosen to try to integrate class concepts and skills into real information needed by firms in today’s marketplace.
1. Choose a topic from the list on this handout. Hand in your first, second, and third choices, plus any persons that you’d like to work with in a group. If you do not select anyone, I will group you based on your topic of interest. Try to select group members with similar work habits to your own.
2. Email or meet with me BEFORE SPRING BREAK to narrow down your project.
3. Here’s your job: you are a member of a consulting team that has been called in to teach our class how to advise companies on the topic you have chosen. You have the responsibility to present up-to-date information in a way that is useful to a real corporation. You are responsible to figure out which class concepts should be used in presenting your information thoroughly.
4. You will be given time to work in your groups during announced class
sessions. Progress sheets will be handed in during these working
meetings. These sessions are mandatory attendance!
The bulk of the 15-minute period should be spent in your PROFESSIONAL analysis of the topic area. Remember, I am not looking for a "cookbook" presentation there is not one right ap¬proach that is most acceptable. Instead, I am looking for clear logical, thoroughness, pro¬fessionalism, and usefulness of the information. Use the course concepts and models we have used. Don’t use irrelevant information. Practice and estimate your time accurately! You are required to make 5 key overhead transparencies to use as a backup. Hand these in with your paper. Be certain to prepare a 1-2 page handout to distribute that your colleagues in class can follow. Hand this out before your presentation and make sure that everyone had one.
Paper: The Group report
The paper should synthesize your group's analysis of the topic area,
utilizing the informa¬tion you have found throughout your research
and development of the oral presentation. The paper should resemble
the type of document that would be prepared by a marketing manage¬ment
team of consultants to FIRM X on the topic area. I will be grading
it in part based on its ability to provide actionable suggestions to a
hypothetical corporation. Thus, it should be supported by exhibits,
tables, pictures, graphs, etc., which can contribute to your presentation.
The maximum length is 20 pages for the entire group report, plus appendices.
This is just a guideline; papers are often longer, given appendices, etc.
How to get a good grade. Follow instructions! Each report should have:
a. Table of Contents (using page numbers)
b. Page numbers
c. An Introductory section
d. The body of the report (with titles and subheadings)
f. Appendices (e.g. charts relevant to your work)
g. A copy of your 1-2 page class handout
h. A description of your division of work, responsibilities for this project
i. Annotated bibliography section (include each team member’s annotated bibliography)
j. Full list of references
If you discuss someone else’s work in the text of your paper, citations to those references must appear in the body of your paper like this: (Wansink, 2001). Just give either the last name of the author or a short title of the work, plus year of publication in quotes.
The reference section should provide full citations for articles, following this simple format below. If you retrieve articles from online databases, such as Business Premier, please give the actual article author, title, and pages, the same as below. Do not cite the database as your source.
Kaufman-Scarborough, Carol (2000), “Asian American Consumers as a Unique Market Segment: Fact or Fallacy?” Journal of Consumer Marketing, Volume 17, No. 3 (Summer), 249-262.
Items found in postings on the web should be cited with enough information to let me check it out. Provide the web site and how you found your source. Do not paste in long search-specific URLs. Also give the date that the source was retrieved.
U.S. Census Release on Families and Households, retrieved at this URL,
February 9, 2005:
Annotated Bibliography (approx. 5 pages): Individual Section, marked with your name
Each person should provide a short summary of the top 5 sources that you used for your part of the term project. Each person should explain why these pieces have contributed to your part of the project and to the project as a whole. In addition, each person should describe the types of information that they would have wanted, if the information were available. In addition, please provide a short write up of any prob¬lems with obtaining reference materials. This helps our library system in identifying problem areas. Be sure to give a correct and complete citation.
WORKING WITH GROUPS IS NOT ALWAYS EASY . . . so why do we do it?
Businesses today expect that you can work with others. Recent graduates return and verify that group work is an essential skill on the job. Recruiters tell us that group projects are a valuable screening that they use for potential job applicants. There are some suggestions that can help you with this. The group work experience is considered to be an important part of this course, as no matter where you end up, working with other people is likely to be an important part of your job.
1. Use care in selecting your groups. Does everyone’s work habits and commitment match yours? What kind of effort will each member put into the project?
2. Meet early. Identify each person’s strengths and weaknesses. Be honest!
3. Assign work based on each person’s strengths, weaknesses, and interests.
4. Get names, phone numbers, working schedules, etc. to facilitate your meeting times.
5. Remember, EVERYONE IS BUSY! Just because you are busy, doesn’t mean that your absence won’t affect the others. Don’t disappear and expect the rest of the group to do all the work. A group member will not be allowed to present with the group if they have not contributed throughout the project.
6. Additionally, each group member is EQUALLY responsible for the project outcome. If your group is having problems, meet with the instructor to develop ways to divide the work equitably and fairly. In rare situations, a group is allowed to “fire” a group member, but must do so in consultation with the instructor. If you cannot come to a fair solution, I will assign equal workloads to each individual group member. Remember: many of you have different skills and different levels of learning. I will be glad to help you if you need some skill-building in meeting your group assignment.
You will notice that part of your assignment is individual and must be identified with your name. I will evaluate this and use it in computing the grade that you receive. All persons in a group do not necessarily receive the same grade.
Each team member must also complete and hand in a "Peer Rating" Form,
in a sealed envelope. These are for my information, and will be kept
confidential. They will be used in judging group effectiveness and
individual member contribution.
AN OVERALL GRADE IS AWARDED BASED ON
YOUR EFFORTS IN ALL THESE AREAS
Division of Responsibilities
Contact with me?
Did you narrow the topic?
Did the group work together?
Did the group solve problems?
MANY STUDENT GROUPS OVERLOOK
THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS PART
Appropriateness of class concepts applied to your topic
THIS IS A MAJOR PART OF THE GRADE
Presentation (15 min):
c. Visuals – professional?
d. 1-2 page handout
e. Ability to respond to questions
f. Logic and support
WOULD YOU GIVE THIS PRESENTATION
TO A MAJOR COMPANY?
Paper: (group report)
b. Organization? Table of contents, intro, body, etc
c. Did you use course concepts correctly?
d. Relevance? Did you carefully select what is in the report? Is there extra information that is nonessential?
e. Appropriate materials/relevance;
Used several points of view?
f.. Actionability? Could a company use this information?
g. Citations in text and in bibliography
ORGANIZATION IS A MUST!
Annotated bibliography from each group member – this is your individual
(5 pieces, content, why important
Peer evaluation from each person
MANY STUDENTS LOSE POINTS DUE TO A POORLY WRITTEN ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY
OR BY OMITTING THE PEER EVALUATION
Each team member is required to submit a peer rating form. This form is to contain an evaluation of each of his/her team members. The form will be kept in strict confidence. In the space provid¬ed below please fill in the names of your team members and record your peer rating for each. Submit the form to me on or before the date your case is due.
The peer rating is based on a total awardable point base of 100 points for all team members other than yourself. You should award the 100 points among your team members based on a considera¬tion of the following:
1. Willingness of the individual to carry out jobs assigned.
2. Ability of the individual to meet deadlines.
3. Cooperation with other team members.
4. Quality of the individual's work.
5. Individual's overall contribution to case reports and discus¬sion and completion of the group project.
Team Members Points Awarded
Total 100 .
(Use reverse side if necessary)
Signature of the team member doing evaluation.
Please consider the following topics carefully. Each represents a cutting-edge issue that includes a current trend, industry opportunity, or industry problem. Determine your first, second, and third choices. Also please indicate any class members with whom you would prefer to work. You may hand in preferences for an entire group. Hand in the LAST PAGE of this handout by Feb. 22nd.
____ 1. Market Mavens and Opinion Leaders: Suppose that you have
been called on to consult with companies regarding these important types
of customers, but you find that companies often confuse them. First, present
clear and correct definitions. Next, give examples of how firms have developed
strategies to reach consumers like them. Finally, present a set of
recommendations for how firms should analyze and reach these important
____ 2. The Tween Market - The "tween" market represents a whole
new marketing challenge -- and opportunity -- for retailers and marketers.
“Defined by Associate Professor Cele Otnes as "kids ages 8-12," the tween
market has approximately $14 billion in annual spending power. That spending
power comes from real funds (allowances or birthday gifts) controlled by
the youngsters or from their influence in the family. For marketers and
retailers, this population represents an huge opportunity to build brand
recognition and loyalty.”
Retrieved at: http://www.business.uiuc.edu/publications/Features/2002Tween/
____ 3. How does one’s cultural heritage affect their consumer
behavior? Suppose that you are called to consult with a major consumer
foods company who wants to determine how to best reach the Asian-American
market. First, present an overview of the size and growth projections
for this market. Next, give an overview of what other companies have done
in making their products and promotions appealing to Asian-American consumers.
Finally, provide a strategy for companies to follow when attempting to
reach this market.
_____ 4. The Family (Household) Life Cycle – Who’s Missing and What
Does it Mean to Marketers? Family life cycle theory was developed
many years ago based on traditional families made up of husbands, wives,
and children. However, Census statistics tell us that we should study households
today, which are comprised of various mixes of people. Identify some of
the missing household forms and attempt to develop an updated “household
life cycle”. Discuss implications for marketers.
____ 5. Learning about the Elderly Market: Elderly consumers
form the fastest growing segment of the United States population.
They are not a homogenous market, however, since there are many active
seniors under 75, plus more frail seniors who are older. Seniors are participating
in many more activities today than they have in the past. Research and
present an updated view of the elderly population. Provide guidelines for
marketers in studying the elderly, and illustrate with one specific market
that is relevant to elderly consumers.
____ 6. Subcultural Markets - Hispanics and the Internet:
A recent national telephone survey of Hispanic consumers found that Hispanics
are rapidly embracing the Internet, but they do encounter problems unique
to their subculture. For instance, language is a significant barrier and
there is less information developed specifically for Hispanic consumers.
Your group has been called in to provide an update for companies whose
web sites are a major part of their business. How can they be sure to reach
the Hispanic consumer?
____ 7. Media Multitasking: Recent
studies have identified that many of today’s consumers are taking advantage
of wireless technology to use their electronic appliances at multiple locations
throughout their homes. Specifically, researchers have found that many
people watch or listen to TV while also using their computer. That is,
they use multiple media at the same time and they may be exposed to more
than one advertising message at the same time. They are also likely to
be exposed to other information at the same time that they are exposed
to advertising. Some researchers are concerned that this “media multitasking”
is changing the ways that consumers will perceive and process the information
in advertisements. First, try to find statistics on how widespread this
trend really is. Next, relate it to how we know that consumers process
information. Finally, develop a set of recommendations for advertisers
who must try to “cut through the clutter”.
NOTE: there are several studies posted on this web site: http://www.bigresearch.com/
_____ 8. Look alike products: Select a set of products that each of your group members uses. Buy the leading brand and the store brand of each. Compare and contrast using perceptual theory. Suppose you work for the number 2 brand of one of the products. How could you use this information you’ve learned to suggest a strategy to build market share?
Term Project Selection Sheet
Consumer Analysis Spring 2005, Kaufman-Scarborough
Please consider the following topics carefully. Each represents a cutting-edge issue that includes a current trend, industry opportunity, or industry problem. Determine your first, second, and third choices. Also please indicate any class members with whom you would prefer to work. If you do not know other class members, I’ll place you in a group based on your topic of interest. You may hand in preferences for an entire group. Hand in Feb. 22nd.
____ 1. Market Mavens and Opinion Leaders
____ 2. The Tween Market
____ 3. How does one’s cultural heritage affect their consumer behavior?
_____ 4. The Family (Household) Life Cycle – Who’s Missing and What Does it Mean to Marketers?
____ 5. Learning about the Elderly Market
____ 6. Subcultural Markets - Hispanics and the Internet
____ 7. Media Multitasking
_____ 8. Look alike products
Names of Suggested Group Members – NOTE: groups are limited to 4 persons each.