Notre Dame Marketing Symposium and case competition

April 26, 2013 | By Raghuram Koka

A team of Marketer Boilermakers had participated in Notre Dame marketing symposium and case competition on 5th and 6th of April. The Symposium and case competition was focused on the concept of “Innovation and Design”. Symposium was started with a lecture by Dennis Boyle, partner and Co-founder of IDEO- a design and Innovation consulting firm, explained how they help organization to grow, innovate, build businesses and develop capabilities. Boyle, who is also a consulting assistant professor at Stanford University explained the design thinking at IDEO and explained various frameworks they use to come up with innovative products. He explained a framework which states that Innovation happens when great design thinking is coupled with desire of people, viable business idea and feasible technology. He also shared few innovative products of IDEO like Elmo call, Injection device.

After innovation consulting, we had a session by John Lewis from Deloitte who emphasized the need of innovation. He explained that Company’s span is decreasing from 1960’s to 2010. In 1960, average lifespan of a company was 61 years, in 1980’s that decreased to 30 years, followed by 18 years in 2010. Hence if an organization has to be sustainable, it needs to innovate. Innovation can be through a product or in service. He simplified this concept by citing the example of “AMAZON”. Whatever Amazon does, was already being done before Amazon. But Amazon learnt that art and performed it even better. In other words, Amazon did innovation in service. Hence it is difficult to imitate their model. If a company innovates through its product, sooner or later, competition will be able to catch. However if a company innovates through its service, it can be a sustainable innovation. “Once you lose a connection with customer, once your customer knows you cannot innovate, you are done. You cannot get them back again.”

John also shared some of the current industry data. It said number 1 purpose of Businesses is to drive innovation, generate profit and improve society. Organizations are trying to improve the society through innovation in business. In 78% cases, Innovation has been critical for a business growth. Finally he concluded by sharing an insight about the next “in thing”. According to John and his research team, “APPLIFICATION – Application development” is going to be the next booming thing in the market. He summarized by saying “Look at an idea and try to find applications for it. Try transferring and translating the idea across different settings. More the places you can transfer and translate, the successful your product will be.”

Finally we had a presentation by Matthew Langie – Director, Product Marketing at Adobe. He showcased Adobe Marketing Cloud as it was the topic for case competition question and explained how marketing is becoming analytical and how current day marketers can use digital media to gauge effectiveness of various marketing campaigns.

The symposium came to a great end by having a networking event in Notre Dame football Stadium press box. We got a chance to interact with the organizing committee of the event and Notre Dame alums.

There were 12 teams participating in the case competition, however only 1 team was out of ND, that was us! Because of a great presentation, Marielisa Rodriguez, VP KGMA, was awarded “Best Individual Presenter”!!

Raghuram Koka
Raghuram Koka