M-School Students Reach Semifinals in Effie Collegiate Challenge

LMU M-School students had a unique opportunity to research, ideate and execute comprehensive marketing strategies that addressed a professional-level marketing challenge. Ten student teams from the M-School capstone course, “Creative Marketing Studio,” entered the 2020-2021 Effie Collegiate Brand Challenge – the first time LMU has participated in the national competition.

Each year, student teams from across the country compete to provide a solution to a marketing challenge presented by established brands. This year, Effie partnered with premier audio company Bose which tasked participants to craft an integrated marketing campaign to raise awareness for its noise cancelling headphones and earbuds among Gen Z consumers.

Out of 140 collegiate teams that participated, LMU had three teams reach the quarterfinals and two of those teams made it to the semifinals (top nine teams overall).

“For our very first cohort to enter a competition of this caliber and have three teams reach the quarterfinals and two teams reach the semis is, well, amazing,” said Andy Rohm, M-School co-director. “We are super proud of the teams’ accomplishments and must acknowledge the efforts and dedication of our industry mentors who helped the teams craft such great work.”

A special shoutout goes to course co-instructors Luis Camano, founder and chief creative officer at Key Activations, and Bernice Chao, creative director at R/GA, for their creative expertise and invaluable insights. A mix of talented advertising creatives and strategists also served as industry mentors to the student teams.

Congratulations to the two semifinalist teams, all of whom are recent 2021 CBA and M-School graduates:

Real Quality for Real People
Featuring Lauren Holloway, Michaela Lumia, John Mulliken and Anna Zagorski

Real Quality for Real People proposed taking the road less travelled to forge a real connection with Gen Z. The headphones industry is teeming with aspirational marketing that makes our target feel like they aren’t enough. We’re flipping this on its head to celebrate Gen Z for who they really are, not who they aspire to be. It’s been proven that Gen Z craves authenticity and realness. With our campaign, Bose will win over Gen Z by keeping it real and quite literally cutting out the noise.

Safe in Sound
Featuring Izzy Berrent, Riley Brewer, Vicky Chang and Kyle Woodland

Safe in Sound leveraged familiarity of Bose’s high-quality products and elevated the message to meet the high standards Gen Z demands of reputable companies. The Safe in Sound campaign introduces Bose’s line of noise cancelling headphones to Gen Z as a tool to ease anxieties by staying in the present moment. Our solution is not only aimed at increasing Bose sales and website visits, but also on heightening social good by acknowledging the mental health of Gen Z and starting a dialogue around it.

“We are beyond proud of all our student teams who participated in the Effie challenge,” said Matt Stefl, M-School co-director. “The fact that we made it so far really speaks to the quality of the work and our students’ abilities to think creatively and strategically in a real-world scenario.”