Weekly cases for the Associate competition are provided by sponsoring businesses and organizations from the region. These cases pose real questions and challenges to which the companies can apply the candidates’ findings and recommendations. Cases have included planning round table events, organizing the consolidation of office space and developing marketing plans. Participating companies have included AOL, Inc., Baltimore Gas & Electric (BGE), Baltimore Magazine, Enterprise, Target, Von Paris Moving & Storage and many more.
1st Mariner Bank is the largest independent bank headquartered in Baltimore. The Bank has approximately $1 billion in assets, 430 employees and 16 bank branches in Baltimore, Anne Arundel, Harford, Howard, and Carroll counties in Maryland, and the City of Baltimore along with and access to over 24,000 surcharge-free ATMs nationwide. 1st Mariner also operates 14 mortgage offices in Central Maryland, the Eastern Shore of Maryland, and portions of Northern Virginia. 1st Mariner was founded in 1995 and after years of financial troubles beginning in 2009, the bank was acquired by a group of investors in June 2014 led by a new, local management team. Upon acquiring the Bank it was recapitalized with approximately $110 million in new capital, making 1st Mariner one of the strongest banks in the region. The management team has spent their entire banking careers in the Maryland market. The goal is to attract the segment of banking clients who value customer service and community-style relationship banking.
Retail business in general has changed over the years given the preference of consuming with eCommerce sites both of traditional retailers and new entrants such as Amazon. Retail banking is no different as many consumers choose to interact through online and mobile banking channels and new entrants such as Ally and Simple have made new client acquisition more challenging. Given the shift to digital banking, in-branch transactions are down and banks now have significantly less customers walking through the branch on a monthly basis, which represents less opportunities to give financial advice and to upsell/cross sell customers through this channel. While many banks are exiting the brick and mortar bank branch strategy, 1st Mariner is investing in a new, state of the art facility in one of the busiest retail and commercial corridors in the country. We feel that as an organization focused on customer service and community-style relationship banking, it is important for us to both maintain yet refocus our delivery to both drive traffic into the branches but also to maximize the income opportunities available through the traditional bank branch model. While this case is focused on the brick and mortar channel, we understand that technology plays a big part in client acquisition and retention and we welcome the opportunity leverage technology and the digital channels to enhance the in-branch experience.
1st Mariner’s current marketing tactics include:
Headquartered in Cincinnati, Cintas Corporation provides highly specialized services to businesses of all types primarily throughout North America. Cintas designs, manufactures and implements corporate identity uniform programs, and provides entrance mats, restroom supplies, tile and carpet cleaning, promotional products, first aid, safety, fire protection products and services and document management services for approximately 900,000 businesses. Cintas is a publicly held company traded over the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol CTAS, and is a component of the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.
Cintas operates approximately 430 facilities in the U.S. and Canada, including six manufacturing plants and nine distribution centers that employ approximately 30,000 people.
Cintas is primarily a B2B company. They typically do not do much marketing to consumers so their brand recognition though high among business is low among college students. Cintas has a management trainee program which is an 18 month leadership program. . Additionally, Cintas is looking for Service Sales Representatives to deliver products and help manage customers. Recent college graduates are targeted for both of these programs.
Cintas recruits on campuses around Baltimore. We target 4 year higher education institutions to recruit management trainees and community colleges to recruit service sales representatives. The challenge is marketing toward college students to get them to visit our hiring website and apply to either the Management Trainee program or Service Sales Rep position. We would like for the students to develop 4 deliverables.
All logos must meet brand standards and cannot be edited. Cintas can provide these.
The materials should be professional in nature and capture the essence of Cintas and give an overview of the position and the benefits of working for Cintas.
No copyrighted music can be used for the commercials.
Flyers should be formatted so they can easily be printed on 8.5 x 11 paper.
See attachments for more information about Cintas.
The winning materials will be used at upcoming career fairs to help recruit local higher education students to work for Cintas.
Each day a person is bombarded with millions of marketing messages by hundreds of companies. How do you get the public to notice and purchase your product in such a noisy world? Maryland is one of the most competitive Health Club/Gym markets. So Merritt Athletic clubs is faced with a more difficult challenge of getting their message heard in a noisy and HIGHLY competitive health club market?
Merritt Athletic Clubs is looking for a new creative television ad that captures the attention of the 30-50 year old demographic and drives membership to the club. We are looking for an ad that focuses more on interrupt marketing (marketing that interrupts a person's day but that person is ok with it because it brings value to his or her day).
These key themes must be apparent in the spot:
B'more Organic is an award winning, Baltimore-based company providing organic protein smoothies. Founders, husband and wife Andrew and Jennifer Buerger, were on a climbing trip in Iceland when they were introduced to the one of the healthiest foods they had never heard of—skyr. Being lactose intolerant, Andrew was reluctant to try skyr but was urged it was safe to consume, thanks to the healthy probiotics that consume the lactose. Sure enough, skyr was the perfect bite to sustain his for the push to the summit. The Buergers have brought skyr to the States in the form of convenient smoothies- perfect for active lifestyles. All B'more Organic smoothies have over 32 grams of protein. They are fat-free, gluten free, have no added sugar, are teeming with probiotics, and are made with milk from grass fed cows.
In addition to their product line, B'more Organic has a mission to "Take a Bite out of Disease". The company is a Certified B-Corp, sourcing milk from family-owned farms and operating all facets of business on sustainable energy. The company prides itself on supporting causes that make the world a better place. B'more Organic donates 1% of sales to Jodi's Climb for Hope, an organization committed funding promising research for Breast Cancer and MS.
We hope our brand story is enough to create customers in the highly competitive health and fitness / natural organic product markets. Even though we are found in over 200 stores in the Mid-Atlantic we need to find a way to stand out to our customer base. How can we continue to expand, stand out in a crowded vertical, and become an integral part of our consumer's daily lives to better spread our mission?
Goal 1: to identify primary and secondary target markets, create an integrated marketing
campaign to become better incorporated into our consumer's everyday lives, and build
brand equity. Considerations: inbound-marketing, digital storytelling, social media
strategy, events, traditional media, etc.
Goal 2: to develop ways to better educate the marketplace on what our product is and gain more attention from consumers. Considerations: packaging, positioning (skyr vs. protein smoothie), website
Goal 3: to develop a proposal for grocers to gain visibility (more SKUs/shelf positioning) in stores
The Town of Port Deposit is a small community on the Susquehanna River in Cecil County, MD. Port Deposit was incorporated in 1824 and the entire town was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. There are several impressive older buildings made from local granite or brick, with the oldest dating back to 1725. The Town's location on the Susquehanna provides opportunities for fishing, boating, hiking, and other recreational activities. Port Deposit is also growing ecotourism in the town with a particular focus on the Northern Map Turtle, which is an endangered species in Maryland that has found a home in Port Deposit.
Port Deposit is currently in the process of renovating the Jacob Tome Gas House into a visitor's center and a research facility to study the turtle to highlight all of these opportunities. The Gas House will focus mainly on the ecotourism and historical opportunities of the Town by providing interactive displays, maps, and other information. A large challenge facing Port Deposit will be how to promote ecotourism, as well as our other amenities to get people to visit the Town once the Gas House opens. The Town has very limited resources and is unable to provide a budget for advertising and marketing.
• Develop marketing ideas for the Gas House, particularly related to the ecotourism and historical opportunities in the Port Deposit.
• Determine the best way to get out the message and attract people to Port Deposit with very limited resources and no budget.