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ace your case

case study

Welcome to Case Study 101!


Here is a sample case study in Marketing Communications. Let's take a closer look at it. 

step 1:

what is the judge looking for?

Your time to prepare starts NOW!

The first thing that you should do when you receive your case study is to understand the instructions and read over the Performance Indicators. 

Performance Indicators are what you are being judged on, it is important to make sure that your presentation hits these indicators. 

step 2:

background info to know

Once you understand what the judge is looking for with the Performance Indicators, it's time to read the case. 

On page 2, you will see the Event Situation. This is where you will find company statistics and target market demographics as well as other important information. 

For this event, here is what we found important to note when preparing your case. 

1.  You are to assume the role of director of marketing.

2.  You will be meeting with one of your regional managers (judge). 

3.  You work for the HOUSE OF VITAMINS, a chain of retailers specializing in vitamins and nutritional supplements. 

4.  HOUSE OF VITAMINS was founded in 1978 and in the last forty years has opened 700 stores. 

5.  The retailer launched a loyalty shopper program, Vitamin Household, in 2012. Since that time, over 500,000 people have enrolled. 

6.  The retailer has maintained an Instagram account since 2015. The page currently has over 300,000 followers and over 4,000 posts. 

7.  The Senior Vice President has decided that instead of having a corporate account, each of the 700 stores will have their own Instagram page. 

8.  You must give the regional manager (judge) a schedule of how the Instagram account should be used each week, including  number of posts, pictures, videos, specific content and national versus local information. 


step 3:

time to brainstorm

Utilize your scratch paper and jot down any idea that comes to mind! How are you going to solve the Big Question?  And what will you do that makes you stand out from the rest of the competitors? We encourage you to think out of the box. 

Here are some general ideas that we had:

1.  Who is our primary target market to structure this marketing plan around? What demographic purchases vitamins and nutritional supplements? 

2.  Could we use Instagram as a tool to market our loyalty program? What will that look like?

3.  How can we utilize Instagram's features to the fullest? Stories, Polls, Highlights, Gifs and DMS?

4.  How often should stores post to their Instagram account? Once a day? Once a week? Will they have enough content?

5.  Where will we get our content? User-generated content? 

6.  What if we provide a template for stores to follow to ensure that content is representative of our brand?

Use your time to brainstorm and figure out creative ways to solve the problem. Make sure that you are hitting the performance indicators and the ideas you wrote down. Keep in mind that you are judged on whether or not you hit the performance indicators. 

step 4:

let's present!

How are you going to sell your idea to the judge? Whatever you say, say it with a passion. Make them believe in you and your idea

1.  Introduce yourself to the judge. Small talk can go a long way to build a repoir. 

         "Hello!  Thank you so much for meeting with me today. I am really excited to show you the marketing plan I have curated for you."


2.  Come up with the basic solution to the Big Question

         "My solution is to implement an effective and impactful social media plan that can be used through the HOUSE OF VITAMINS 700         stores. 

3.  What are you going to be talking about today? Let the judge know about your major points of your solution. 

          "We will do this through the creation of individual Instagram accounts for each location, curated content designed to engage our target market, and giveaways used to stimulate interest." 

4.   Go into detail about each of your main points. Utilize visual aids if necessary, even a simple pie chart on scratch paper goes a long way. 

5.   Let your imagination shine! What is an idea that you think nobody will have and make you stand out? 

6.   Wrap up your presentation by briefly covering each of your main points and ask the judge if they have any questions. 

7.   Answer those questions like a pro! How so? Try not to present new information during the questions, but elaborate on you rintitiavtives that you spoke about in your presentation. The judge might even try to scare you out of your ideas, don't let them. It is important to stick to your idea and run with it, no matter what the judges say. 

8. CLOSE! This is an important step in your presentation that you don't want to forget!

         "Let's meet next week to talk about our next step in the implementation process." 


You're going to ace your case. 

For a deeper analysis of this case study, check out this walk-through created by Shannon Joyner. 

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