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December 20, 2006

school's out for winter

I finished that damn paper yesterday, albeit one day late, despite the holiday spirits of distraction and procrastination tempting me every step of the way. In one case 'The Santa Clause II' did win out during a couch sitting with The Disney Channel I'm afraid.

The topic I chose for my Marketing Management course final paper was How Crayola Uses Promotional Tools to Motivate Their Consumers. I researched and wrote about how they use samples, coupons, rebates, gifts, prizes, contests, tie-in promotions, cross-promotions, price reductions, premium offers and point of purchase (POP) displays to elevate their branding visibility and sell more product. Scintillating stuff, isn't it?

Now that this class is over, I am fairly certain I do not want to be a marketer to sell a particular product or service. I think I would feel like a snake oil salesman, and I have to be passionate about an object in order to market it. I just can't get that passionate about sales items, and have to really stretch at choosing marketing research topics I'm remotely interested in (Crayola, Dairy Queen). I'm more able to be passionate about concepts or ideas, thus leading me to believe I'd be a better agent of social change rather than a marketer. It was evident when I was taking my Rhetoric of Social Movements and Persuasion classes that I'd rather move how people think than move a product. However, changing people's attitudes, beliefs and feelings is much, much harder than getting them to buy into a product. While the degree I'm going for is an MS in Management with a Public Relations Specialization, I think many of the skills and ideas are transferrable. Plus, it's free with where I work, so I'm not complaining.

Anyhow, this semester's class (I take one class each semester) was significant in that one of our classmates was deployed early in the semester and had to drop the class, but unfortunately she perished in Iraq. Marine Maj. Megan M. McClung was an embedded media liason for the Marine Corps, and was apparently an enthusiastic marathon runner as well. She is the first female Marine killed in Iraq. I did not know her or correspond with her, but I did read some of her comments in our class discussions. It makes me sad that people are getting blown up over there, because I'm still not clear about why we went there in the first place. Good people there are dying every day, both American and Iraqi, and I'm not sure why.

Next semester's class is Organizational Leadership and Decision Making, which sounds like a class I've already taken, Organizational Management. Oh well, all of these classes are starting to blur together by now, which I guess is the point.

Posted by jimbo at December 20, 2006 12:23 PM


Your class sounds like a couple of my recent undergrad classes. Let me know what book you need. If I have it, you're welcome to borrow it (along with my notes and papers, if they're helpful).

Posted by: TSheehanDC at December 20, 2006 1:09 PM

You'd think that Crayola wouldn't need incentives...I mean, c'mon..it's Crayola.

Posted by: stebbins at December 20, 2006 5:03 PM

I think the intention is that everyone be uncertain about the purpose of Iraq 2. Keep moving the goal-posts, keep changing the story, keep up the Chinese-whispers media strategy. Facilitate rather than fight the natural tendency to confusion in public discourse.

Posted by: scott at December 20, 2006 7:50 PM

Oh, but they do need to push incentives! Your assumption that Crayola is omnipresent is a direct result of these marketing campaigns that have embedded the Crayola brand unquestioningly into your psyche. And they must continue to do so to ensure future generations worship Crayola as well. Plus, they also have to compete with all these new video games and other gadgets all the time...I could go on...

Posted by: jimbo at December 20, 2006 9:40 PM

Have you considered getting your real estate license?

Posted by: durban bud at December 20, 2006 11:32 PM

You guys, Iran is totally the real enemy. Not Iraq. Forget you've ever heard about Iraq. The real enemy is Iran.

Posted by: Aaron at December 21, 2006 12:51 AM

I need to get back to school. I actually miss learning. Never thought I'd say that!

Posted by: Bubala at December 21, 2006 9:53 AM

You look more like Herbie the dentist, rather than the abominable snowman!

Posted by: Mike at December 21, 2006 11:59 AM

Don't feel bad, Jimbo. I'm 37 and still haven't figured out what I want to do when I grow up...(sigh).

Posted by: 207guy at December 27, 2006 5:29 PM

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