About Laurel Gray

Laurel Gray is the Editor-in-Chief of Best Accounting Degrees. She has been a professional writer for a decade and received her bachelor's degree in Journalism from the University of Minnesota. She specializes in accounting and business career advice and academic information.

Here are my most recent posts

Who’s Hiring Interns? Top Internships for Marketing Students

As a college student, you should always looking for the next step up on the ladder of success. Spending time in college should be seen as your ‘minor-league’ training for the big leagues. Do your diligence now, get involved, make the right plays, and soon, you’ll have opportunities at the majors. Or in your case, a great marketing internship!

Here are the five critical things you should be doing now to get a shot at a great internship:

  • Work Your Online Persona: To land your dream internship, a potential employer has to be able to click to one site and get your full background in a few seconds. Do you have a resume and achievement oriented site up at http//(YourName).com? If not, then start to do this with all the web tools available for creating free – try Do You Buzz for starters.
  • Show Volunteerism: Does your resume portray a college student off the grid? Are you a student wholly consumer with your studies, friends and nothing official on campus? Then 2013′s a new time to get involved. Involvement shows initiative, and every employer loves to see initiative.
  • Make Better Grades: Are you excelling in your studies? If not, what’s keeping you from fulfilling your grade potential. Meet a counselor. Talk about your desire for internships. The counselor should be able to point toward the best marketing resources to help you in your emerging career.
  • Ramp up Your Networking: Are you going to social events that are part of your professional aspirations? Can you get involved in alumni groups? That’s usually the best way to have direct contact with student who are now working in marketing,
  • Be Visible Online: You should be connected on social networks with your friends and family, but with organizations, professional groups and businesses to learn about possible insights to marketing internships.

Below is a sampling of marketing internships found at job search engines across the US in the last few weeks. With a little aggressive enthusiasm, one of these marketing internships can be yours!

Marketing and Program Support Internship, National Press Foundation, Washington, DC – If you’re interested in marketing, communication, online media and working with our national thinkers in the press, this great internship should be of interest. Stipend and commitment come together in one great opportunity.

  • Field Marketing Interns: National openings – National brand SanDisk (maker of disk drives, SD cards and more) needs interns to work in retail marketing internships around the country. Ideal applicants would work throughout summer 2013 with paid training in its California offices. If you want to get involved in technology from a retail marketing channel point of contact, this is a great opportunity.
  • Interactive Marketing/Communications Internship: (New York, NY) Reporting to the National Director of Marketing/Communications, this internship must be a junior or senior in college, with good social media skills and office based computer products.
  • Sports Marketing Events Internship: (San Diego, CA) If living in one of the most beautiful US cities and working in sports event marketing is your thing, then this internship for one of American Cancer Society’s initiatives for runners could be an exciting opportunity.
  • Communications Intern: (Baltimore, MD) This internship brings a marketing intern to work with Wide Angle Youth Media, a Baltimore non-profit that helps inner-city youth tell stories using media tools and become engaged in their communities.

Every college student in marketing classes should be looking at internships to further their academic career and income opportunities for a summer and beyond. As you learn in the classroom, there are many opportunities to get ‘real world’ experience, as long as you put in the effort to broaden your profile and your horizons. Good luck!

Top 15 Marketing Blogs to Read Over Holiday Break

The holidays are almost here. You’ve got several weeks off from classes, studying, online seminars, and exercising your brain. You can relax now. But should you?

After all, the holidays brings about a time for socializing, and who knows? You may end up talking to a friend of a friend who just may be a high-ranking marketing pro with an eye for young talent. Impressing with insights about current news could lead to a future internship or even a job offer after graduation.

As a student with aspirations in achieving a marketing degree, it’s important to keep up with what’s current in your field. Sure, you’ve got family and friends to catch up with over the holidays, but it’s also wise to keep one eye peeled to stay up-to-speed on marketing industry knowledge.

Industry news sites and marketing-focused blogs have replaced newspapers and printed industry contact directories for college students seeking industry information. If you’re in marketing, or aspiring to be, you should be checking blogs covering content marketing, consumer behavior, search, tech, consumer blogs and industry sites. If you work in marketing for a company, you should be checking your company’s social media feeds as well.

So let’s take a look at the top marketing news sites, blogs, tip sheets and insider forums to help you keep tabs over the holidays.

Overall Marketing Sites

Advertising, marketing and digital platform Advertising Age offers up its Power 150 daily to readers to gauge the strength of the overall marketing industry’s blogs and thought leaders. A recent tabulation for the top 10 marketing blogs from the Power 150 recently showed:

10. Brian Solis

9. I Believe in Adv

8. Search Engine Land

7. Social Media Examiner

6. Seth’s Blog

5. Copyblogger

4. ShoeMoney

3. Chris Brogan

2. PSFK

1. Ads of the World

Digital Marketing Sites

There are of course many news sites and blogs dedicated to trends and insights in social media, digital advertising, search marketing, content marketing SEO tactics and more. Search Engine Journal has a super shortlist of some of the best articles posted in early 2012 to track in all these areas.

Here’s a sampling of some of the wisdom you can tuck under your Santa cap this holiday break:

Business Marketing Sites

Business marketing sites Forbes and Fortune offer great insights for the practicing marketer or even soon-to-be marketer. Here’s a sampling of some of the top business marketing blogs, where you’ll find basic marketing practices and key inspirational insights from marketing professionals on a daily basis:

Have fun this holiday season, but stay active in your marketing reads as well. Use this list above to increase your knowledge of marketing blogs on your way to getting your marketing degree.

Marketing Interview: Owen Nitka of MarketingLab

We had the opportunity to interview Owen Nitka, Senior Account Executive at MarketingLab, a Minneapolis-based marketing agency. Owen is a 2007 graduate of University of Minnesota, and brings a unique perspective on the agency (marketing) careers and tips for the marketing student. Check out this all-encompassing and insightful marketing interview here:

How did you know that the agency side is right for you?

Every work environment has its own culture, and for marketers there’s probably nowhere that difference is more pronounced than between agency and client-side work. My first work experience was an internship with a Fortune 500 company during college.  In that time, I was able to see how marketers deal with all the environmental factors affecting one brand.  The experience was valuable, but the highly disciplined structure of a large corporation just did not fit my personality. 

Prior to graduation, I had an internship at MarketingLab, a shopper marketing and consumer engagement agency and was immediately met with a rush of excitement from the big ideas that filled the office. Working on a range of brands and a multitude of projects meant I never had a dull day. The best part of working at an agency is that creative solutions are king!  I was motivated to focus on the fun part of marketing – developing engaging and innovative ways for our clients to sell more stuff.   There is no clear cookie-cutter answer for client vs. agency and obviously the answer depends on the marketer’s personality, talents, interests and in particular their motivations.

How creative can you get with your job? What excites you the most about creating new campaign ideas?

Agencies thrive on creative thinking, so you always have a chance to stretch your creative muscle. Working in a smaller office, everyone has a hand in the strategic and creative development. Although we have a full creative department, it takes an entire team to deliver the best thinking.  MarketingLab started 12 years ago with one key objective; help clients sell more of their products and services by changing shopper behavior.  Whether it’s a relatively small project or huge campaign, its all starts with an actionable insight.  Our job as an agency partner is to turn those insights into impactful and profitable programs.  It’s exciting to carry an idea all the way through from concept through activation and see the measurable impact is has on our clients’ businesses.

What tasks do you do on a daily basis, and how or how didn’t college prepare you for them? 

As a Senior Account Executive, I am responsible for account management and developing new business opportunities. The commonality between both of these is the building of strong relationships with clients by leveraging knowledge of their business. For my current clients, I’m the day-to-day contact who manages all elements of a program from concept to activation to recap.  Providing exceptional account service can mean different things depending on the client or project, but often includes: strategic development of marketing solutions, managing a team of project managers and external vendors and ensuring appropriate financial management of projects.

What was the turning point for you when you decided to pursue a degree in Marketing? 

Throughout high school, I was interested in business, but didn’t have a particular area of focus. It was important for me to choose a university that had a quality program with strong ties to a vibrant and dynamic business community like Minneapolis.  From the University of Minnesota, it’s easy to get connected to different opportunities. The school is friends and neighbors to Fortune 500 companies, entrepreneurial start-ups, and non-profits, meaning that mentorship, internships and job opportunities abound. After taking the ‘general’ business courses my sophomore year, I found the creative, strategic and competitive elements of marketing to be more fun and engaging than anything else. From there, I went beyond the marketing degree to enroll in a self-designed curriculum that integrated marketing and strategic communications through the journalism school. 

What advice could you give recent college graduates who are looking to enter the world of marketing?

  • Whichever part of marketing you’re interested in, it all moves pretty fast. Chances are, whatever your professors taught you your freshman year of college no longer applies. Need an answer to a pressing marketing problem? You won’t find it textbooks. Effective marketing isn’t about looking up the answer, it’s about creating the solution. For example, nobody taught professional marketers already in the business how to “do social media”; they had to figure it out on their own. That’s your future: figuring out marketing. Forever.
  • There’s more to the marketing world than big brands and agencies. Yes, you can work at a marketing agency, big or small. And yes, you could work for a big brand like Target, BMW or Coca-Cola. But there are SO many more options. What about working in-house at a cool tech company? A small business? A hospital? Just because your professors only talk about the campaigns big brands have executed, doesn’t mean those are the only marketing jobs out there.
  • Network like crazy with everyone.  I know every graduate has heard this, but I’d challenge recent grads to always be looking for opportunities to increase the value of your network.  Whether you live in a big market or small one, the network in your chosen industry is going to be extremely tight knit – everybody knows somebody.  Don’t wait for job postings to go up, set your own interviews.  I never turn away a request I get for an informational interview.  You can learn more about a potential career in 30 minutes across the table from working professional than hours of online research.  Point is, you never know who could end up helping you out the future. Get to know as many people as you can.
  • Your career will be the best campaign you ever work on.  Prove your skills by marketing yourself. Don’t wait for someone else to give you the opportunity. Invest time in building your social media reach, and leverage LinkedIn to connect with other marketing professionals. Demonstrate your passion for marketing by properly marketing yourself. If you can’t market yourself, how will you market for others?

[Check out more marketing interviews here...]

Marketing Career Lessons from Mad Men

Whether you’re a first year marketing student or you’re preparing for graduation, odds are you’re familiar with the wildly successful TV show “Mad Men.” Not only does this show make working for ad agencies look appealing, it’s a great source for career lessons. Following are the top five career tips we’ve picked up by watching the show:

1. Dress for Success

The clothes on “Mad Men” are, in essence, another character, and just like the show, how you dress has a direct impact on how others see you. To make the best impression, show up for work in clean and pressed clothes that are appropriate for the office environment. If everyone is wearing collared shirts and ties, be sure to follow suit (yeah, that’s a pun). If the dress code is a little more relaxed, dress it down a notch, but don’t misinterpret business casual for ratty jean day. Strive for a timeless fashion, not this season’s hottest trends.

2. Wield the Power of Silence

One of the most powerful communication tools you have is silence. Just like Don Draper, don’t share more than you need. Keep your personal life and juicy office gossip tidbits out of your repertoire. Stick to the work facts and you can’t go wrong. Think about it this way – who would you rather spend your lunch hour with: the copywriter who is talking about his advertising strategy for the company’s newest multi-billion dollar account or the account executive who is lamenting about his divorce? Don’t be the lonely hearts divorce dude and keep your mouth shut when it comes to your private life.

[More on Marketing resources...]

3. Don’t Canoodle the Boss

While it may have worked for Jane, sleeping with the boss rarely – if ever – results in a marriage proposal. Sleeping with the boss has several serious implications including perceived favoritism and sexual harassment. And no matter how nice your coworkers may be to your face, it will always be in the back of their minds that you’re sleeping with the boss. As the old adage says, “Don’t dip your pen in the company ink.”

4. Don’t Mix Business with Pleasure

While the idea of getting past the 2:00 productivity slump with a dirty martini sounds like a great idea, don’t do it. Most organizations today have strict rules about drinking during the day. Mix a cocktail and you may find yourself in the unemployment line.

In a similar vein, we understand that having a few drinks with coworkers after a long day seems like a harmless idea, but it’s not. Be careful about how cozy you get with your coworkers. Pulling from Don’s playbook, don’t lose your position of power by giving away much about yourself. Be diligent about how you present yourself to others in your company.

5. Make Work about Work

This can be a hard one to master. No matter how nice they are to you, your coworkers are not your friends. Don’t look at augmenting your social life by making friends at work. Take notes from Don, who clearly cares more about his position than the people on his team. You don’t have to be a callus ass about it, just keep your primary task in mind – to produce quality work and become successful.

Author Bio: This article was written by a guest author. Dwayne Thomas is a marketer and staff writer for cabletv.com.  He welcomes your feedback on Twitter @DwayneThomas15.

The Newbie’s Internet Marketing Guide: An Infographic

It’s no secret that there are multiple elements involved in marketing; and even more complex are the avenues, channels and promotional activities involved in online marketing. If you are looking to get into the field of online marketing, this infographic covers the ropes on just about everything. You’ll learn about email marketing, inbound marketing, social media marketing, lead generation, content marketing, and how all the elements of interactive marketing jive to create succinct campaign for a company or brand. With more than 6 billion Internet users worldwide, why would you not want to learn how to tap into this vast network of marketing opportunity?

[More in Internet marketing education...]

Unbounce.com so kindly shared a highly interactive guide to online marketing can be found below:

The Noob Guide to Online Marketing - Infographic
Unbounce – The DIY Landing Page Platform

Spotlight on PR Careers and Education: An Interview With Sarah Woods

We had the opportunity to interview Sarah Woods, Senior Associate at Exponent PR, a Colle+McVoy partner. Colle+McVoy is an integrated advertising agency that has more than 200 employees. Prior to her current position, she worked in various public relations roles at Carmichael Lynch Spong, Carlson Marketing, Padilla Speer Beardsley, Wells Fargo, and United Way. We interviewed her to share her perspective on careers and degrees in Public Relations, and to provide a resource for prospective students wanting to learn more about what their future might look like in PR. Let’s explore:

What are your day-to-day tasks? How have your tasks changed since starting out in your career?

Whether you work for an agency, a non-profit or a corporation, your main goal is to engage with a target audience, communicate a specific message and cause a specific action. At my job as a Senior Associate at Exponent PR, on any given day I tackle a variety of tasks, including media relations outreach, developing media materials, managing a social media page, event planning and execution, brainstorms, campaign planning, and yes, even managing a budget.

Each year brings bigger and more exciting responsibilities. When starting a career in public relations, don’t be discouraged by tasks that may seem menial, such as building media lists, assembling media kits, or tracking media coverage. To prepare yourself for leadership roles, you need to understand the profession from the ground up. Use each small, beginner’s task as a window to broader insights and a path to bigger challenges. A commitment to master the small things will show your employer that you are ready for the next step.

What was your college major? How did college prepare you for your career?

I attended the University of Minnesota‘s School of Journalism and received a Bachelor of Arts in Strategic Communication. The School of Journalism offered a wide range of classes, including traditional news reporting, research, graphic design, advertising, public relations, and communications. This is a pretty standard courseload for strategic communications or PR students.

Faculty within the program provided valuable insights based on real-world experience from advertising/public relations executives and journalists. The also provided access to a database of internship opportunities, which helped me gain early experience in the field. Working at multiple internships during college gave me invaluable experience and made me more marketable to employers when I graduated and began searching for a full-time job.

What was the most beneficial class you took in college that prepared you for your PR career?

The Strategic Communication Campaigns capstone course was extremely valuable because it gave students a chance to apply their classroom knowledge, including everything from research, planning, budgets and  creative concepts, to execute in a “real” campaign. Most PR bachelor’s degrees offer a capstone or “thesis” class that allows you to work on simulated or real-life campaigns.

[More on Public Relations degrees...]

Why would/ wouldn’t you recommend this career path for someone?

I would highly recommend a career in advertising and public relations. Some students might be intimidated by a career with a competitive environment and rapidly changing technologies. Don’t be intimidated. For a career that might require long hours and a piece of your creative soul, you will be repaid in full. Public relations is a unique and inspiring industry that feeds creatives in a fulfilling way, and in today’s marketing environment, public relations is  rising as one of the most effective and respected disciplines.

What personal characteristics work well with a PR professional?

    • Be resourceful. Consider it a form of creativity and a way to prove your problem-solving skills. You will be placed in a wide variety of situations that will require this skill, and your employers will expect you to find a way to make things work, even when initially they don’t go quite as planned.
    • Be mindful of the details. I’ll never forget the first community support campaign event I planned as an intern, and the important lesson to plan down to the most minute detail. During a trial-run to the event site, we had everything ready to go. The handouts, the signage, the presentation, the name tags…it was all there. Only one problem – the outlet was two-pronged, and our electronics were three-pronged. The lesson: details may be small, but they do matter.
    • Be curious. Don’t be afraid to ask questions in order to truly understand an industry. The intern who is afraid to ask is the intern who misses valuable mentorship opportunities.
    • Be creative. At our agency, creativity is not a department, it’s a requirement. Learn where to find inspiration, and fuel it into strategic and insightful ideas that solve business objectives.
    • Be a team player. Don’t squash your competitive streak, but learn how to support your team to cultivate strong relationships both internally and with clients.

Thanks, Sarah! We hope you learned more about this all-important Marketing specialization. For those of you who are interested in guest posting, connect with us on Twitter.

Successful Gamification Tips for Your Business

Customers just want to have fun. That’s why gamification is so popular and steadily on the rise. The purpose of gamification is to make things more fun and to encourage user engagement. Just about any business can figure out ways to incorporate gamification into their marketing strategies – all it takes is a little creativity, and a little understanding of what makes it such a successful approach. Here are some tips to help your business gamify your Internet marketing:

Clearly Define Your Goals

What do you hope to gain from gamification? You need to know before you begin. Gamifying your content should work in tandem with your overall business goals, and should produce specific results. For example, do you want to boost traffic of repeat users to your website or social media? Do you want to use gamification as a tool to assert your image and foster brand recognition? Knowing exactly what you want will help you implement the right gaming elements.

[More on Internet Marketing education.]

Know Your Audience

You should already have a clear idea of who your customers are.

  • What is your target audience?
  • What demographic is the majority of your audience made up of?
  • Who visits your website?
  • Who are your friends and follower?
  • Most importantly, what do they like?

Create gaming elements that will appeal to your audience in particular.

Offer Rewards and Incentives

People don’t play games if there’s nothing for them to win by doing so. While rewards can be things like real-life prizes, they don’t have to be. Badges and pins for achievements, for example, are very popular (think Foursquare). You can also offer some type of virtual currency, which could be used to purchase anything from real-life merchandise to items within the game. Rewards and incentives give people something to strive toward. Offer them generously enough to keep their interest, but make sure they’re still challenging – a game isn’t fun if there’s no challenge to it. Consider including recognition as a reward, too, such as with a public leader board.

Constantly Analyze

As with any marketing strategy, you should be paying close attention to the results. Look for ways that you can quantify the results of your gamification. Find out the numbers: How many people are playing?, How often do they play?; How quickly do they earn achievements? Are you earning more fans and followers? Are you getting more clicks? Use the numbers to figure out what works and what doesn’t….

Ask for Feedback

Another way to analyze your strategy is to simply ask your audience and participants what they think. Make it easy for them to do so, such as by including optional feedback boxes at certain checkpoints. Use their feedback to improve your gaming elements to make them more user-friendly and enticing. Consider a user survey in the beginning stages of your gamification. Listen closely. The trick to gamification isn’t just getting people to play – it’s getting them hooked so they keep playing.

About the Author: Russell Martin is a marketing pro and small business entrepreneur who often gives advice to other businesses about ways to improve customer engagement.

Three High-Value Mobile Marketing Methods

Choosing the right mobile marketing method for your business can earn either hearty profits or financial heartbreak. Ads, apps, banners, text or networking: Which mobile marketing method is right for your business?

Mobile Ads

Purchasing mobile ad space escalates the real estate adage of “location, location, location” to new e-heights. A Google AdSense campaign places relevant ads on websites, and in mobile marketing the correlation of ads and mobile phone or tablet users is even more important.

Surfing the Internet on a mobile device isn’t the highest action on the priority list with mobile device owners, but they do search and surf extensively. However, they tend to stick to surfing patterns, sticking to certain groups of websites much more than desktop or laptop computer users. Therefore, choosing a mobile ad campaign with banners or text ads must be highly targeting your market audience: Placing an ad for shoes, for example, on a mobile web page for a hardware store won’t correlate well into a high click-through rate, simply with a phrase, “hard-wearing shoes on sale.”

Coldwell Banker, however, drew a click-through rate on an iPad banner ad of above seven percent – far above the standard 0.01 percent most banner ads produce. Their extraordinary approach that earned them that percentage was so simple that it skated below the “new and improved” thinking: Their video banner was an interstitial before an app. The video ad did not automatically play but offered viewers to “learn more.”

Don’t always follow the crowd. Use trends that are reliable, but following a trend doesn’t mean always doing the same thing in the same old way.

[ More on starting a career in mobile marketing with an Internet Marketing degree.]

Text Ads

Short message system or SMS ads, those presented in written form via text messages, tweak the top action by mobile phone users: Texting is the top use for mobile handsets. Tapping into that top-tiered trend may be just the leverage your marketing campaign may need. After all, over 70 percent of all text messages are read, whether sent from a friend or a business.

The key to audience volume is the proper opt-in keyword. The user texts your unique keyword to a short code – you, and that text message presents permission to send them advertising messages. The texted code enters your business onto their contact list, but do not overextend that welcome into tapping into other entries on their lists: You have permission to send messages to that user, not the user’s friends.

Unlike standard keywords or phrases for web pages, mobile marketing keyword phrases should be without spaces. For instance, the keyword phrase you might use on your website is “expert dog training techniques.” The equivalent mobile marketing key phrase should be “ExpertDogTrainingTechniques.” The ‘keyword’ doesn’t have to be only one word, but the phrase must be presented ‘as’ one word – without spaces.

Short phrases work better than long ones, so unless your tag line is less than 40 characters, a rough average, don’t use that but opt for a shorter keyword phrase that expresses your business or product idea perfectly. Your unique code will ensure the user opts into your list, but the more unique your text opt-in phrase is, the more solidly you implant your business in the user’s mind.

QR Codes

QR codes were behind Macy’s mobile campaign in February that brought the non-tech-savvy mobile user into the mobile marketing center. They not only used QR codes very effectively with viral marketing of Facebook fans “liking” products, which spread an advertising links onto hundreds of thousands of extended pages but also gained users a special discount on those products – passed to others via the “referral” link.

Macy’s enveloped the non-tech savvy by launching a YouTube video that explained in very simple terms what QR codes are and how to take advantage of the significant discounts within the QR code extended campaign details.

About the Author: Jaye Ryan, a freelance author who loves to write about mobile technology and mobile marketing for MobilePhones.org.uk.

Making the Sale: Sales & Marketing Tips

As a Sales and Marketing degree grad, or even seasoned salesperson know this: when you’re trying to make a sale, you have to keep in mind that not every customer is going to be falling to their knees and begging you to take their money. You have to make a concerted effort to have the right attitude and approach when calling a potential customer. You are not just selling a product or service, you are selling yourself, and a customer is much more likely to buy something they want or need from somebody who is friendly and helpful than someone who has the wrong attitude. The customer could need some persuading – not everybody says “yes” right away – but injecting some personality into your pitch will make you far more likely to succeed. The worst that somebody can say is no, so make sure you put your best case forward when calling the customer and you could find yourself the proud owner of a great sale.

 [More on Marketing degree options...]

Reasons Why A Customer Won’t Buy

  1. Attitude of a company employee
  2. Dissatisfaction with a product
  3. Lured away by competition
  4. Persuaded by a friend to go somewhere else
  5. Customer moved away

Why Customers Will Buy

  1. Product met their needs
  2. Good savings/deal
  3. Impressed with product quality
  4. Company has good reputation
  5. Liked the salesperson

Infographic courtesy of Precept Sales Coaching

How to Obtain Financial Aid as a Marketing Degree Student

College tuition continues to rise and tuition costs are one of the most challenging hurdles to overcome when you’re trying to get an education. Fortunately, there are a number of grants and scholarships available that are specific to a particular major and these can help ease the financial burden a college degree entails. If you’re a marketing major or if you plan to become one, you probably already know the importance of marketing yourself and presenting yourself well to those around you. Those skills are vital when applying for marketing grants and scholarships because each has a considerable amount of competition. The first step in obtaining financial aid for your marketing degree is to know the options available to you so you know where to apply.

The Adelante! Fund offers a MillerCoors Brewing Company Scholarship every year that pays between $1000 and $3000 for each recipient. The scholarship is for Latino students only in their junior or senior year in college with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. You must be majoring in Marketing or a related field like Business or Public Relations. You also must participate in Adelante’s Annual Leadership Institute to be considered. The application period runs from February 1st to May 1st each year.

PPEF scholarships are designated exclusively to employees of the promotional product industry and their children. The Four-Year College Scholarship for Academic Excellence and Achievement Scholarship pays $1000 a year for four years, giving the recipient $4000 total over the course of a college career. The scholarship is awarded to high school seniors or graduates who will be attending an accredited four-year university in the fall, meaning that community college students are not eligible. A minimum high school GPA of 3.0 is also required and the student must either be a marketing or advertising major or express the intent to become one.

The Chairman’s College Scholarship is another PPEF scholarship and while the entry requirements are the same, the scholarship pays $5000 in two $2500 increments, meaning the scholarship is paid out over two years instead of four.

The Lagrant Foundation provides 15 different scholarships to marketing, advertising, or PR degree majors each year. Both undergraduate and graduate minority students are eligible for the funds. The students must be citizens of the United States and carry a full-time student status of 12 credits or more at a 4-year accredited university. All applications must be typed and not handwritten to be considered. A minimum 2.75 GPA is also required to apply.

There are numerous local scholarships in each state that apply to specific colleges in the region so call around to universities near you to see if they know of any scholarships unique to their school or township that is open to marketing majors. You also greatly increase your chances of success in any scholarship hunt by maintaining the highest high school GPA as possible. Donating time to charitable causes also helps separate you from other applicants. Get letters of recommendation from your teachers if possible, especially those that teach in field relevant to your field. Business or psychology are two examples.

Scholarship submissions are competitions because there are always more applicants than there are funds available. Use your marketing skills and ambitions to set yourself apart from those around you to maximize your chances of having a lower tuition bill next year.