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In this set of three exercises, students are cast in the role of marketing manager of one of three product categories. They must choose a specific brand in their category and use research trend tools and Google Ads Keyword Planner to explore and analyze consumer demand, identify customer segments, research product features, identify competitors, and, finally, choose paid-search keywords. The exercises culminate in a presentation using the PowerPoint template UVA-M-1013P. At Darden, “Customer Insights” has been used in the first part of a second-year MBA elective and executive MBA course called “Digital Marketing.” It is the first session in a module called “Digital Promotion Strategy,” in which students learn to effectively promote a brand online by “listening” to what consumers are searching for, identifying key trends, and optimizing their digital campaign strategy through paid ads and search engine optimization (SEO).
(1) Expose students to the wealth of online information about obtaining insights about brands and provide a context for background research for keyword planning. (2) Enable students to practice with online information (e.g., consumer search, social media posts, blogs, and so on) to understand consumer segments, as well as consumer preferences and concerns about a product. (3) Guide students in devising a search advertising strategy for a chosen brand using keyword tools, such as Google Trends, answerthepublic, and Google Ads Keyword Planner.