Wow, this has been a very busy month for me! Aside from my usual school work, I was given the opportunity to represent Purdue University in the National Team Sales Competition hosted at Indiana University. The event is sponsored by 3M and Altria, two very successful companies that often recruit sales students from Indiana University. This unique opportunity was a highlight of my time here at Purdue University because it was an opportunity for me to represent my school in a legitimate competition.
Two weeks prior to the competition, our team was given a fictional case to dissect and analyze. Within the case there were 3 main objectives that we had to complete. Specifically, our company was a salt company that produces a private label of salty snacks and our main objective was to partner with a grocery store to sell these snacks. However, we had to market these 9 new snacks to the Hispanic demographic between the ages of 25-34. Therefore, we had to do a lot of market research on that particular demographic and understand how they spend their money. Furthermore, we had to select a “test market” city with a high population of Hispanics between the ages of 25-34. Last, we had to create a social media marketing plan that would also appeal to the specific demographic of Hispanics from ages 25-34. As you might imagine, this was a very complex case with a lot of different factors coming into play. It was a very challenging scenario and as I mentioned before we had a limited time to prepare. Overall, my team performed very well but we did not make the top 3. There were 21 different universities from around the nation at this event. The winners were the University of Washington, Baylor University, and Northern Illinois University. All of these schools have sales programs and competed at a very high level.
Not only was this event fun because of the competition aspect, it was a fantastic networking opportunity. As I mentioned before, there were students from 21 other universities around the country who we could talk to and learn from. Moreover, the competition had a sales specific career-fair with companies like Google, Whirlpool, 3M, and Altria all there to hire for sales. I encourage all sales students to get involved in the different sales role-play competitions that Purdue University offers.
— Nicholas Warden, Senior, Selling and Sales Management