Date of Defense
Date of Graduation
I will be presenting my thesis based on my work in the 2020/21 NSAC American Advertising Federation Case Competition. For this year’s NSAC competition, Tinder teamed up with colleges across the United States to see who could prepare the best integrated marketing campaign. A holistic campaign consists of research, strategy, and execution. For the competition, we received basic materials to guide our campaign including brand guide, policy and procedures, and a Tinder brief outlining the necessary elements and consideration for the campaign. All elements of the campaign were created by WMU advertising Juniors and Seniors with the assistance of our instructors Dr. Karen Lancendorfer and Prof. Greg Gerfen.
To increase the productivity of our work, our class was split into 5 separate teams that would work together throughout the competition. These teams were media, strategy, production, creative, and account. This would allow students to work in a field that they are interested in and emulate the experience of working in an ad agency.
The first step of the process was research. Starting with secondary research, our teams scoured sources across the Internet to grow our understanding of the current dating app market and what elements lead to success. From here, our strategy team was able to draft a survey that targeted the questions we needed answers to. Each member of our team sent the survey out to the 18 – 24-yearold demographic outlined in the Tinder brief. The data from the primary and secondary research would be the base we would build our entire campaign onto.
Data from the research helped the Media team to narrow down their media options for the campaign. This allowed us to confidently choose the media that would effectively reach our target audience where they already are. Then the media team split up our budget of 10 million dollars into these separate channels, optimizing the reach and frequency of our executions.
I held the position of creative director for the competition. The responsibilities of this position were to lead the creative team in coming up with the big idea and creative executions through research, ideation, and concept testing. I specifically was instrumental in the creation of all of our video and motion executions, pulling in my experience in the Adobe Creative Suite.
While materials were getting finalized, our team started passing the baton to the production team. They were in charge of turning all of our decisions and executions into the final plans book that we would be turning into the judges. The creative and production team often worked in unison to make sure we kept a consistent look and feel in all of our creative decisions.
After the plans book was finalized and submitted, members of our team worked with the production team to create our 20-minute presentation. This and the plans book would be the criteria for how we placed in the competition. After slides were created and the presentation recorded, my teammates passed it to me to create the video that we would submit. When we went to the competition, we took third in our region.
Wicklund, Max, "AAF National Student Advertising Competition" (2021). Honors Theses. 3468.