Through a partnership with the C. T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston, ROCO will receive a $5,000 donation from Google thanks to a coterie of enterprising students who were awarded third-place in the Google Online Marketing Challenge 2015.
Graduate students R. Jason Griffin, Aigul Aubakirova, Neil Gustafson and Matt Avery competed in Google’s AdWords Social Impact Awards, which recognizes work with nonprofits.
This team had three weeks and a $250 ad budget.
From the press release:
Griffin, an MBA student who led the team working with River Oaks Chamber Orchestra (ROCO), said the organization was looking to grow its online presence; generate more web activity and ticket sales; and develop its subscriber and donor base.
Speaking candidly, Griffin said the team’s ads generated a modest number of clicks, not surprising since the chamber-music audience is a relatively narrow market segment. Yet a remarkable 29 percent of those views converted to actual ticket sales. Thanks to the team’s efforts, ROCO saw an 11 percent increase in revenues.
For Griffin, a Houston attorney who decided to pursue his MBA part time in 2012, the challenge was an exercise in “the power of online marketing.”
“Not everybody wants to listen to classical music,” he said. “But by using an online-marketing strategy, these guys were able to increase their revenues, increase their customer base, (and connect with) people who will come back for more. So when you look at any entrepreneurial venture, that’s an applicable lesson. I think that’s what I got out of it.”