Students Receive $120,000 in Grants to Develop Marketing Campaigns for Nonprofits
A group of business students excelled creating and executing online marketing campaigns for nonprofit organizations as part of the Google Ad Grants Online Marketing Challenge.
September 5, 2019
By Renee Chmiel, Office of Marketing and Communications
As part of a class project, Nickey Raj ’20 MBA and her teammates had the opportunity to collaborate with Aflatoun International, a Netherlands-based NGO that provides social and financial education to young people around the world. Raj and her group focused on enhancing the organization’s brand awareness and helping it reach potential supporters and volunteers using Google AdWords software.
As part of a project in their "Digital Marketing Strategy" class, Raj and her teammates worked with the organization to develop a marketing plan and execute Google Ad campaigns. They then provided the organization with a post-campaign report and handed the account back to the client.
"This gave me a chance to exchange ideas while improving interpersonal skills - within the team and with the client," said Raj. "Working with a nonprofit organization was incredibly humbling, and now I have a better understanding of how nonprofits are making the world a better place. This experience gave me a chance to exchange ideas while improving my interpersonal skills – within my team and with the client."
The project was part of the University’s participation in the Google Ad Grants Online Marketing Challenge. Raj’s team was one of twelve teams at the University that took part, with each team receiving a $10,000 credit through the Google Ad Grants program. Google paired the teams made up of undergraduate and graduate students with nonprofit organizations, and the students were responsible for managing their relationships with their clients.
Subroto Roy, Ph.D., the students’ professor, says this was an exciting and important opportunity for students, since clients are expected to spend more than $100 billion on digital advertising with Google.
"Working with a nonprofit organization was incredibly humbling, and now I have a better understanding of how nonprofits are making the world a better place."Nickey Raj ’20 M.B.A.
"The project happened in real time – in other words, only the campaigns created by the students were running in the market during the course of the project," said Roy. "This put serious responsibility on the students. Part of the coursework included a weekly individual assignment that required students to report the daily improvements in the campaigns they were running. This taught them diligence."
Tony Pagano ’20 MBA and his team worked with the Salvation Army of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, creating a digital marketing campaign that, as he reported to Google, helped the organization garner new interest in their programs and attract new donations. Their efforts yielded more than 2,000 clicks with approximately 40,000 impressions.
"This project was a great opportunity because it gave us a real-world education through exposure to an actual product that industry leaders use," said Pagano. "Not only were we required to provide a product for a customer, we formulated business relationships with the client as well."