Focusing on the Future: Marketing Students Conduct Social Media Focus Groups with Freshman


By Colleen Lentile

At the start of the spring semester Dr. Andy Wood, head of the marketing department at James Madison University (JMU), chose three of his MKTG 430: Professional Selling students to participate in a project with Dean of Admissions, Michael Walsh. Marketing students, Elizabeth Norcott, Andrew Carlin and Ryan Talento in collaboration with Walsh conducted three focus groups for freshman at JMU. The focus groups concentrated on what social media platforms and online sources freshman use to gather information when they are deciding which university to attend.

“The benefit I received from the project was having the opportunity to work as a consultant to solve a real-world marketing problem,” said Talento. “It was a great experience for my resume, and helped demonstrate my knowledge of focus groups.”

The university and the Office of Admissions gained insight into which social media platforms are going to be the most effective and what types of content will be best received by prospective JMU students. Walsh and the students hope to continue coordinating focus groups in the future and getting more feedback on their social media strategies.

Published: Monday, February 22, 2016

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 17, 2017

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