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Kelly Hudson
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Spring 2017 Capstone is over! This has been a stressful, sometimes overwhelming, but ultimately rewarding experience. Here's my advice for future Capstone students. No matter how much time you think you have ... you don't. Everyone is saying it, so let me join in the chorus: Time is your enemy, and what's more, it probably won't feel that way until you're down to the wire. Even if you think that you have just one smallish task to do before your next milestone, trust that it will take you longer to accomplish that task than you think. Either the client will... Continue reading
Posted Apr 28, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
Last week, Team Behr submitted our survey that will provide the data to back up the secondary research and qualitative interviews we've done throughout the semester. This was a big milestone for us and an important step toward completing the project, and we were happy that our contact Lisa complimented our hard work and dedication in designing it. Then, the next day, we got another dose of variability. Lisa contacted us and said the company we had planned to have run the survey would not be charging $4.95 per response, as estimated. Instead, they were quoting an amount that worked... Continue reading
Posted Apr 3, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
This week, Team Behr went searching for more insights. We interviewed paint store employees, homeowners who have hired painters, and the editor of a painting trade magazine, trying to discover if the people connected to professional painters could tell us anything about our target and whether anything distinguishes them from the rest of the pro segment. One thing I've noticed about this project is how it has forced me to step outside my comfort zone when it comes to asking people for information. Walking into a paint store and explaining that you're a student who is working on a project... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
This week, Team Behr continued to chase down qualitative interview leads for insights. That's about it ... ... except for a moment of panic mid-week. We have a weekly check-in call with Lisa, our contact at Behr. Technology issues sometimes mean that one of us joins the call late. This week, Veronika and I waited for half an hour and were not joined by Lisa. We emailed her - no reply. We waited a day, and no reply. We followed up two days later, and still no reply. Lisa has never missed a check-in call and is normally very responsive... Continue reading
Posted Mar 19, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
This week, Team Behr took our weekly check-in with our contact, Lisa, to a more meta level. After our normal discussion of progress on the project, we asked Lisa to tell us how she felt (scale of 1 to 10) about the work we had done so far, the timeline for the project, and our communication with her, as well as if she felt any changes were needed. We were thrilled when she gave us 10s across the board and said that, form her perspective at least, nothing needed to change! We've been really happy with our collaboration with Lisa,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 12, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
This week with Team Behr as seemed to be all about waiting. We are waiting to hear from a variety of different interview sources (found through websites and social media). We are waiting to revise our survey questions until we collect information from the interviews. We are waiting to deploy the survey until we can make sure our survey questions are in a good place. Waiting is one of the points of tension in marketing, I know - perhaps you have to wait from approvals from busy executives, perhaps you need to hear from experts before you conclude your analysis,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 5, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
This week, Team Behr discussed survey questions with our contact, Lisa, right before half the team (me) departed for a week in California. Lisa said she would provide feedback after discussing with her team. Two days later, we learned that the feedback from Behr is that we should try to find people in the demographic to interview before finalizing questions. We have one contact who fits the bill ... but can we find at least 5 before our next call? Drew told us that marketing was filled with variability, and we just experienced it! The request from Behr makes total... Continue reading
Posted Feb 27, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
Like everyone else in the MS-Marketing program, I took Marketing Research with Dr. David Curry. While I found some of the programming and probability formulas to be a little more than I had bargained for, one lesson I will always remember is how to craft survey questions. "Mutually exclusive and exhaustive." This week, Team Behr is composing questions for our market research survey, and that phrase, which describes how to structure a multiple-choice answer to a survey question, keeps ringing in my ears. "Mutually exclusive" means that answers must not have any overlap. (The classic example is asking for age... Continue reading
Posted Feb 19, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
This week, Team Behr has focused on secondary research. Our final project will focus on primary research - i.e., surveys we conduct ourselves - but before we get started, we want to see what's already out there. Our project poses an interesting challenge because there is no existing research on the specific segment we are targeting - which, as I've mentioned before, is basically a combination of two demographic groups. One of the groups has plenty of articles written on it, but a lot of the articles contain broad, sweeping statements about the entire group that are seemingly unsourced, and... Continue reading
Posted Feb 12, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
Last week, Team Behr presented our project charter to our contact, Lisa. It was gratifying to hear how impressed she was with the work we've already done, and what we propose to do over the next few months. Lisa seemed happy with our charter, but she felt the need to present it to her colleagues at the Behr innovation team. This makes total sense, but it also reminds me that we aren't working just for Lisa. We also have to meet the needs of dozens, maybe hundreds, of people at the client organization. Our calls with Lisa take place in... Continue reading
Posted Feb 6, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
This week, Team Behr worked on gaining some firsthand knowledge of our client's customers by doing some "secret shopping" at the client's store (The Home Depot) and a competitor's store. We also worked on pulling together some quotes so our contact, Lisa, can establish a budget. As I wrote last week, we need to conduct market research on a very specific demographic group, and we've been asked not to use any Behr internal mailing lists. That means one of two things: trade organizations, or paying for responses. We have reached out to a trade group and may have some luck... Continue reading
Posted Jan 29, 2017 at CAPSTONE!
Team Behr had our initial call with our client earlier this week, and for all our nerves about "meeting" the client, I think it went pretty well! It turns out our contact, Lisa, was recently a student herself - she just graduated with her master's in marketing communications, so she is familiar with the student experience. I won't go too far into the details of the Team Behr project, partly because of confidentiality and partly because that's not really the point of the blog, but I will say that the project is going to focus heavily on market research of... Continue reading
Posted Jan 22, 2017 at CAPSTONE!