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By Glebs Kiselovs
BA (Hons) Business Studies, Year 1

This year for me one of the most exciting experiences was participation in the “Rise To” challenge. Together with four BU students (Lauren England – Business School, Jana Sirica – School of Tourism, Mark Trubetskoy and Aleksandrs Pereverzevs – Media School) we had to run a social campaign for six weeks and this campaign gave us very useful business and marketing related skills and experiences.

First, we had to choose a theme of the campaign and we decided to run “Thanks to Mothers” campaign because we thought that mothers do not get the recognition that they deserve and many students miss their mums. Thus, BU students were our primary target audience and by the end of our campaign, we raised more than 2160 thanks messages (huge thanks to all of you who supported us).

The campaign was not just about asking people to say thanks, we had to use different creative advertising methods, develop our promotional strategies and conduct surveys for research purposes, etc. We created social media profiles to promote our campaign including a wesbite, Facebook page,Twitter feed and ucoz.org. We organised  different events and filmed a few videos about them:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U5K4EAnjjD8, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Y5EZHo-Edo.

The most successful idea was to design special postcards and use them to raise more thanks messages. In addition, we used envelopes in “guerrilla campaign” to attract people’s attention.Rise to

We had six roles in our campaign: Team Leader, Market Research, Marketing, Sales, PR and Sponsorship. Every week we had to do tasks and case studies for each role to show the progress of our campaign and our next plans.

I was responsible for the Sponsorship part and, in my opinion, it was one of the most difficult roles in this campaign. I had to find a sponsor who would pay £250 for our participation in this challenge and, in addition, give us some extra money to cover our expenses. During this campaign I had a conversation with such companies as P&G, AFC Bournemouth, Purbeck Ice Cream and many more. Finally, I approached a Latvian wood production company “Aquila Ltd” who paid £250 to “Rise To”, gave us some extra cash and provided us with a very important motivation and inspiration.

Finally, our campaign had a huge success and on the 1st of April we went to the Awards Ceremony in London. It was a very exciting moment and we kept our fingers crossed before they announced the winner. Fortunately, our campaign won and we were awarded a £2000 cheque. In addition, I won an individual prize for the sponsorship role and this summer I will have an internship in a London-based company.

This challenge was an amazing opportunity to put our knowledge into practice. We learnt so many new things that will be useful in our future careers. We also learnt how to work in a team and solve conflicts between its members. It is very difficult to express what I feel after it all is finished but trust me – these feelings are awesome. I suggest all of you should take part in this challenge next year and, if you need some help, I am always ready to give you some useful advice.  

Originally posted on The Business School Blog

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