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Students market ideas for arena football

Marketing students at Lone Star College-Cy-Fair will soon see some of their semester project ideas used to market the upcoming arena football season of the Texas Copperheads.

Last fall, Melinda Becker’s marketing students were divided into groups, given a budget and charged with developing a marketing plan with heavy emphasis on the promotional aspect for a business, and in this case, arena football. At semester’s end, each group shared their plans with the Copperheads’ Shawn Owens, account executive, Elana Washington and team mascot “Striker.” The class presentations included a mix of PowerPoint, streaming web video clips, handouts and even a “hilarious” video filmed during the team tryouts.

“I was pretty impressed,” said Owens. “The students seem to have really put in a lot of time and effort researching the team and came up with some great ideas about how to get the word out about the Copperheads and get some people in the seats.”

Among some of the more feasible ideas were youth camps for boys and girls in the spring and summer; showering the community with flyers, posters, and pocket schedules; and having players speak at schools, participate in the Houston AIDS walk, post street signs, do radio commercials, etc.

Partnering with a community organization such as the Copperheads, rather than a made up business, gives her class more motivation to do the project, said Becker.

“The benefit for the students is the learning experience. It’s a real organization and they feel like they could actually contribute to a marketing effort,” she said. “For the Copperheads, it’s a chance to hear fresh ideas as to how they can market their team on a limited budget.”

Owens said not only would he recommend and encourage any organization to do something like this with another class, he hopes to partner again with Becker or perhaps other Lone Star College-Cy-Fair departments.

 “Not only do you get to help the students get excited and interested in their subjects, but these young college minds can come up with a lot of new and innovative ways to expand and help grow a business,” he said. “It was an awesome experience.”

For a 2008 season schedule or information on the Texas Copperheads, go to texascopperheads.com.