14 November 2016 • Floris den Broeder
Online marketing workshop for 300 students
It was Wednesday and laptops were hesitantly being opened in the Auditorium of the main building. The projector beamed a stream of light over the heads of students, a few of them still rubbing the sleep from their eyes. After all, they would have to be wide awake today if they wanted to discover the secrets of Google about online behaviour and findability.
Sitting next to me was Pepijn. Together with around 300 other students in Marketing and Small Business & Retail Management, we listened to an introduction given by Simone Fredriksz, Dean of the Faculty of Business, Finance & Marketing. It was a special day since it was the first time that students were being offered a faculty-wide online marketing workshop.
The students listened attentively to Yeelen Knegtering from How en Knower who talked about the use of personas (archetypal target groups) in order to get a better idea of the online behaviour of their future target groups. How could they know what their customers wanted, where they went online, and how to serve them to raise their conversion rate (i.e. get them to take their shopping cart to check out).
For Pepijn, this was interesting material but not entirely new to him. ‘Everything I’m seeing today is pretty familiar stuff. Don’t forget that we spend a lot of time on the internet where we’re getting a lot thrown at us – and only some of it is what we were looking for. So we already have some experience in this area. Still, it’s good to have a more in-depth look at it.’
‘A friend of mine just started his own business, and I’m helping him a little with this. If you want to make it easy to find your company online, you have to do some serious research. What your customers think is important, but I’m eventually hoping to use a little more creative approach. Coming up with new concepts – now that’s what I really want to do.’
Daan, Pepijn’s ‘colleague’ in Marketing, was also enjoying the workshop. ‘I learned some of the basics last year in a course I was taking, but I’m learning more of the specifics today. It’s interesting, and the explanations are good. Another nice thing is the interaction we get from the assignments we can do right here.’
‘I live in Katwijk where so many of us are involved in fishing. My dad has a fish shop and deals a lot with wholesalers. It might be a fairly old sector but more and more of these companies are going online. I hope to have my own shop a few years from now.’
Lecturer Michiel Bernsen was proud of how the workshop went. ‘Today was actually a basic introduction to the subjects they will be taking this year. I’m glad that online marketing is now playing an important role in the curriculum. The tools we are giving the students now are things they can apply straightaway. This way, we’re doing our bit to educating good SEO/SEA specialists and Google Analytics experts to take their places on the job market.’