Cherie MacFarlane, senior marketing major, won first place in the Huizenga Sales Institute’s uPitch for iPad contest last week. Her prize included a 16 gigabyte iPad and $1,000 for an organization to which she belongs.
To participate, students had to film a 60-second pitch in the sales institute’s rooms. The pitch had to explain “Why I am NSU.”
MacFarlane’s 53-second commercial was a spoof of the Old Spice campaign, “The man your man could smell like.”
“I wasn’t interested as much in the prize, as winning to be proud and put on my résumé that I have selling skills,” said MacFarlane.
She said that, to win, she distributed flyers to students and professors in the business school asking them to vote for her. She also created a video to explain the voting process and posted it on YouTube and Facebook.
“It was a whole marketing campaign,” she said.
MacFarlane said she got the idea for her video while browsing reddit.com and it evolved with the help of her friends, the American Marketing Association, and Toastmasters. She gave the prize money to NSU’s AMA chapter.
MacFarlane was one of five finalists the judges chose from nine entries. The judges’ criteria for the videos included their likelihood to go viral, the students’ charisma and whether the presentation was fun and entertaining.
Charlie Pettijohn, D.B.A, director of the Huizenga Sales Institute, said, “We had the dual purpose of promoting NSU and get students accustomed with the facilities.” Pettijohn said he believed that this was accomplished.
Anthony Campenni, senior economics major, won second place and a $250 American Express gift card. Jean Souffrant, junior marketing major, won third place and a $100 American Express gift card.
Voters chose the winners through the institute’s Web site. There were nearly 70,000 votes. Pettijohn said, “We tried to create it, not only to promote the sales program, but also NSU and what it brings to the students.”
Melissa Jones, senior business administration major, was also a finalist and, although she did not win, she felt “blessed to have been chosen in the top five.”
Jones also said she had fun shooting the commercial.
“It was a good opportunity to get your face known by the faculty and new people because you never know where they’ll post it,” she said. “And an iPad was at stake.”
To view the finalists’ videos log on to YouTube and search “uPitch for iPad.”