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Valuable Lessons from Business School Assignments

How b-school case studies can be used in the real world.

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Just when you think the case studies and surveys that you had to study while in business school have no 'real world value', think again! One of the things I did not like while in business school was writing assignments on case studies for other businesses. I always thought I would rather be formulating my own business and marketing plans rather than rehashing those of other companies unrelated to what I wanted to do.
 
I can now admit that I was wrong and I did learn a valuable lesson that has helped me with my job at GoPromotional.com. We sell promotional products, such as mugs with your logo on them. Our target audience is businesses that want to use promotional merchandise to help customers or potential customers remember them. Promotional gifts also help with company branding. Based on what I had learned in business school, I had the idea to research and see if any studies had been done on the positive effects of promotional products.
 
Sure enough, I found a survey conducted by the British Promotional Merchandise Association (BPMA) which proved that promotional products could help companies be remembered, increased branding and provide a great return on investment in comparison to other forms of advertising.
 
This has helped us with promotions for our company and also with sales since we can show our target customers proof that promotional products work and can increase their sales and their level of recognition among their target audience. It is a wonderful tool that has come in handy for promotions and sales. We have published many articles outlining the benefits of promotional merchandise outlined in the study, and we use the information on our company blog and website as well. Just to give you an idea of the statistics that came out of the study to see how convincing they are to help with company sales, here are the key statistical findings that came out of the survey:
 
Key Finding Statistics:
  • Promotional merchandise can deliver a higher or equal ROI than most forms of advertising
  • 66% of respondents said they could remember the brand on the promotional product they received during the last year
  • 79% said they were likely to do business with the company in the future
  • 8 out of 10 (84%per cent) respondents said that a branded promotional gift increases brand awareness
  • Over three quarters (87%) of recipients said they kept a promotional gift for longer than 12 months
  • Over half (56%) of respondents said their opinion of the brand/company was more favourable after receiving the promotional product
 
What does this mean for you?
How can you make this translate to your company and your job? It is easy for you to take what I learned and apply it to your position. Look for studies, surveys, or research done in your area. If there is not anything out there in your line of business, consider conducting your own poll, survey, or research. The information you gain would be well worth the cost and effort. Speaking of cost, online surveys and polls do not cost much at all and could be done for free through social media channels.
 
Richard Larson is author and Brand Manager for GoPromotional.com. He enjoys writing about business and marketing topics.

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