Judy Strauss, associate professor of marketing at the University of Nevada, Reno, will have students from her Principles of Internet Marketing class participating in an international Google AdWord challenge starting on April 2. Students will work in teams of five to develop an online advertising strategy for a real business or nonprofit organization that has not used AdWords in the last six months. After the campaign is developed, students will then monitor and optimize the campaign for three consecutive weeks.
Google AdWord campaigns help drive traffic to the business client's website by creating ads that pop up when people search words on Google that are related to the client's business. This way, clients are able to advertise to an audience that may already be interested in their product. Google will provide each student team with a $250 budget to run their campaign.
"This is an exciting opportunity for students to work with a real business," Strauss said. "And, by using $250 of free AdWords credit, they learn how to use pay-per-click keyword advertising online."
The winners of the global competition and their professor will receive certificates and a seven-night trip to San Francisco. One of the days will be spent at Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., where the students will have the opportunity to meet with the Google AdWords and marketing team. Regional winners and their professor will also receive a trip to a regional Google office as well as laptops and various other prizes provided by Google.
Seven student teams have selected local businesses and are meeting with managers to learn about the business and determine what their clients hope to achieve from their online marketing campaigns. Some students have selected a business client through the Nevada Small Business Development Center at the College of Business and include Sunridge Golf Course, Nevada Rubber Stamp Company, Raver Swag, The Profitability Solution, LLC, Atmosphere Dive Apparel, Naan and Kabab Restaurant and Joe Bob's Chicken Palace.
Two of the teams' clients, Raver Swag and Atmosphere Dive Apparel, are owned by students River Jangda and Jasper Jacobs, respectively.
Teams will soon submit a pre-campaign report to Google to receive their $250 credit for the challenge.
For more information about the AdWords challenge, go to Google's Online Challenge.