Student Projects

Real Data. Real Companies. Real Results.

Goizueta is prized for its innovative applied learning techniques, including the Management Practice (MP) elective courses. The "MAC class" (Marketing Analytics Consultancy) puts the real world in front of students. Here, students put their new marketing tools to work by examining an organization's data and using analytics to create insights and implement solutions. This hands-on approach leads to the development of data scientists, an emerging breed of "numbers nerds" who calculate the solutions and ask the right questions.

The MAC class "gets their hands dirty with data", learning to identify, translate, and maximize the results. At the end of the semester, the class is presented with a Thought Experiment-- a hypothetical situation from an actual company. Last year, local heavyweights including The Coca-Cola Company, CNN, and The Weather Company wanted to know what insights could be harvested from their social media content. And, more importantly, what should they do with that knowledge. The students teamed up, dug in, and presented their findings to these corporate clients.

Simply put, business at Goizueta is the real deal.

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Case Study: Orkin

Client Overview

Four teams were asked to evaluate the efficacy of several different advertising vehicles and help the company craft strategy to capitalize on team findings. We were absolutely encouraged to think "outside of the box" and bring a new perspective to the client’s advertising dilemma. With these goals in mind, my team’s top priority was to bring the client a robust and analytically driven recommendation that was immediately actionable.

Given my past experience in marketing analytics and marketing strategy, I led the team through the analytics of the project. We employed advanced statistical techniques - vector auto-regression and ad-stock modeling – to de-seasonalize the data and identify underlying trends. Our final deliverable shared both (1) the “delay and decay effects” of the client’s advertising spend and (2) opportunities to change advertising spend in several markets to better capture demand change.

Information Gathering

The client was very involved in the project and made the internal data gathering process easy. My team and I were supplied with detailed proprietary data including sales and advertising spend. This enabled the team to allocate more time to industry research and engage in more simulation modeling. At the conclusion of the project, two-thirds of my team’s recommendation was supported by proprietary data, while public data and industry research informed the other third.

Internal spend and business lead data has been the core source of our analysis in deriving opportunities for Rollins. Utilizing resources from the Goizueta Business Library including SimplyMaps and Analyst Reports on the industry has greatly enhanced the insights and findings my team has developed. SimplyMaps data has allowed us to dive deeper into market demographics, internet usage trends, and household pest control trends across various markets. Analyst Reports have allowed us to understand our internal data and what we’ve discovered within the context of the broader market and macro trends affecting it.

Project Takeaways

This is a unique opportunity for students to take an open-ended research project full circle. The class bridges the theory of the classroom with the practicality of real life business. Students are put in front of high level executives and held accountable to deliverables. Few classes afford students all of these experiences at once.

Understanding the various drivers of lead generation for the pest control industry has been very eye opening for me. Our analysis allowed us to see how various marketing programs and spend affect overall business, a skill I know I can take with me as I advance in my career making decisions across programs to drive business. Deriving synergies for a business to best and most efficiently utilize marketing spend is a key takeaway for me.

This project was easily the most impactful experience for me while at Goizueta. The class encouraged me to build on my leadership abilities, explore new concepts in the marketing analytics space, and “think outside the box” to solve an issue for a client. I fully anticipate that the skills and experiences I acquired in the project will carry through with me in my career.

-- Ted Hickey 15MBA & Melissa Decosimo 16MBA

Case Study: International Hotels Group

Client Overview

I worked on a project with IHG to help them understand what the driving factors are of a high-performing hotel in the Holiday Inn Express and Holiday Inn Express and Suites brands. Our team used factor analysis and regression based on both internal and external data to help us form our recommendation.

Information Gathering

We used surveys that IHG collected with over 2 Million survey responses from 2012-2014. We also had external survey data about satisfaction from travel sites like trip advisor and expedia from 2013-2015. We also gathered information about how hotels and companies measure satisfaction and tried to understand what best practices were out there.

Project Takeaways

What I really enjoyed about this process was seeing how two teams could look at the same data and although going in very different directions and having different analysis, providing the same overall recommendation to the client. It really helped solidify to me how important data analytics is in making marketing decisions.

I believe IHG will value that fact that we identified not only what is the minimum factors that are driving a hotel to be at a median level (factors like customer service), which is pretty straightforward. The interesting insight was how these hotels when to the next level, which was to have more updated hotel features. I think this was surprising to IHG and may push them to make some long term investments.

I believe that the work in the field of marketing analytics is the future of marketing. It’s crucial to make decision in any entity of a business based on data, but increasingly important in the realm of marketing. People are already marketing on the individual level and if companies want to be competitive in the marketplace they will too have to become immersed in marketing analytics. Since this is the wave of the future, I believe my experience with these skills will help me become a more desirable candidate in the work force.

-- Molly Parker 16MBA