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Goizueta Marketing Strategy Consultancy Established 1991



LEARN ABOUT GMSC Emory University’s Goizueta Marketing Strategy Consultancy (GMSC) partners talented MBA students from Goizueta Business School with leading organizations to create strategic marketing solutions. GMSC teams have been successfully providing value-added recommendations on pressing business issues to their clients for the past 20 years. Clients have commissioned GMSC students to analyze a range of strategic business initiatives including: • Repositioning or launching a product or service • Maximizing marketing budget to increase profitability and market share • Utilizing new channels or partnerships to reach new customers

GMSC OVERVIEW The Goizueta Marketing Strategy Consultancy (GMSC) creates a unique opportunity for MBA students to tackle and solve very real marketing and strategy challenges faced by the world's leading organizations. Students are aligned in a competitive setting to research, analyze and propose actionable recommendations for a wide variety of marketing strategy projects. Clients pay a fee to sponsor a project, which goes toward research costs, academic advising, Presentation Day events, and prizes for top teams. The MBA teams, comprised of six to seven students, are matched with a client project based on both student interest and qualifications. Project deliverables include a written report and a formal presentation. The 35-50 page final report includes a situational overview, an industry and competitor analysis, findings from secondary and primary research, strategic and tactical recommendations, financial justifications, and implementation plans. Students spend about 10 hours each per week towards achieving these final deliverables. “The information received proved invaluable to our business. The strength of the student team’s suggestions far exceeded our expectations, and we are currently implementing several of their recommendations.” Derek Schiller Vice President Sales and Marketing Atlanta Thrashers Hockey Club Client

Academic advising from Goizueta faculty, under the leadership of marketing professor Dr. Reshma Shah, provides students with innovative, state-of-theart tools and resources that help to address challenges posed by clients. This faculty input results in high-quality, actionable project solutions and recommendations from the student teams. Furthermore, workshops and customized educational sessions guide students through every aspect of the GMSC process, from inquiry to research to results. Each year approximately 150 judges from the Atlanta business community evaluate the presentations while clients and faculty evaluate the written reports.


GMSC HISTORY GMSC began in 1991 with the guidance of Dr. Atul Parvatiyar. Under the management and guidance of Dr. Reshma Shah since 1997, GMSC has become the largest student-run organization in Goizueta Business School’s MBA program and remains a major differentiator for the business school. In the past twenty years, more than 85 different corporate and non-profit sponsors have participated in and benefited from the program. Several clients have participated in GMSC more than once.

“We were delighted with our participation with the GMSC student team. They brought forward smart, creative and actionable recommendations based on sound business analysis and business acumen. We will be integrating their thinking into our ‘go forward’ plans.” Julie Collins Director, Global Integrated Marketing CIBA VISION Client

JOIN OUR ROSTER Acuity Brands | ADP | Alliance Theatre/ BBDO | American Cancer Society | The American Red Cross | AT&T | Atlanta Bread Company Atlanta Symphony Orchestra | Atlanta Thrashers | BellSouth | Budget Rent-A-Car | CARE | Cartoon Network | Chick-fil-A The Chubb Group of Insurance Companies | CIBA Vision | Cingular Wireless | The Coca-Cola Company | Cox Communications Delta Air Lines | Dixie | EarthLink | Emory University | Equifax | Focus | Fujitsu Business Communications Systems | GE Georgia Lottery Corporation | Georgia-Pacific | GlaxoSmithKline | Goody Products, Inc. | Hewlett-Packard | IBM | Kimberly-Clark |Lithonia Lighting | Manheim | Merck & Company | Motorola, Inc. | NCR Corporation | Norrell Corporation Ritz-Carlton, Buckhead | Rock-Tenn Company | Roosevelt Institution | Saab Cars USA | Solvay Advanced Polymers, LLC Solvay Pharmaceuticals, Inc. | Song Airlines | The Southern Company | SunTrust | Synovus | Tetra Pak Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. | United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta | UPS | WebMD

GMSC is a part of Emory University’s Goizueta Business School, a non-profit, tax-exempt organization.


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS What is the Goizueta Marketing Strategy Consultancy? The Goizueta Marketing Strategy Consultancy (GMSC) is a student-run program dedicated to solving the pressing marketing strategy issues facing major corporations. Since 1991, teams of talented MBA students have worked with these organizations, much like they would in a consulting engagement, but under the structure of a course with faculty supervision. Who are the clients and why do they participate?

“This was FOCUS Brands’ second project withGMSC and both projects yielded for our company real, go-tomarket solutions for our brands. The results of the project allowed us to put in front of large potential franchisee groups in India multi-tiered research and recommendations of how the Moe’s brand would look, feel and taste in India. The Emory groups provided recommendations on menu modifications based on extensive focus groups and quantitative survey data as well as a financial model that backed up their recommendations. The Emory GMSC program gave us not only a great foundation to attract the best franchise candidates for India, but also many ideas that we incorporated into the final brand strategy.” Holly Frey Director, International Operations Support FOCUS Brands Client 2010

Clients are typically large, multi-divisional companies or very large non-profit organizations. Our clients understand that today’s business environment produces a constant stream of marketing challenges. Now, more than ever, return on investment drives decision-making, forcing companies to do more with less. GMSC addresses these challenges by providing customized solutions at a fraction of the cost of consulting firms. Recent clients include The American Cancer Society, The Coca-Cola Company, Newell-Rubbermaid, The United Way, GE, Focus Brands, and Solvay Pharmaceuticals, just to name a few. Are the students working on real problems facing the clients? Yes, the situations are real and current. The teams approach these projects working under strict confidentiality guidelines since these projects are usually highly strategic to the client organizations. In addition, the GMSC leadership has instituted a blanket non-disclosure agreement that must be signed by all students, faculty, and judges. What are the deliverables from the students? The student teams provide: 1) a written report including key findings, implications, and actionable recommendations; 2) a presentation of findings and recommendations to the client and stakeholders; and 3) a presentation to a panel of marketing/strategy executives on presentation day (May 5, 2011). There are also periodic deliverables throughout the semester, including both qualitative and quantitative research performed by every team. How is GMSC structured?

Pavel Rodl, Co-Director of Client Relations

Each client is assigned a team of six to seven students to tackle their pressing business issue. Teams begin working on the projects in January and continue until the presentation day in May. Throughout the project, students attend weekly academic sessions taught by veteran consulting alumni, other reputable Goizueta professionals, and external area specialists to equip them with the skills to best manage their projects. In addition, students have weekly deliverables and reviews with Dr. Shah to ensure the project is moving in the right direction. Teams also have access to various complementary faculty members to bring specific expertise to each project. Each team is assigned a team guide, a second year student who participated in GMSC the year prior, to provide additional support throughout the entire GMSC process.

Danielle Miller, Managing Director

Thank you for taking the time to learn about the Goizueta Marketing Strategy Consultancy.

I’m interested in becoming a client or judge; how do I get more information? For more information please contact: Liz Roques, Co-Director of Client Relations


BECOME A CLIENT As a client, you will have the opportunity to customize a project that reflects your organization’s current and future strategic marketing challenges. Prior clients have commissioned GMSC students to analyze how to: • Assess new or existing market potential • Bundle products and services together to improve margins and customer satisfaction The first step is to identify the marketing opportunities within your organization and discuss how GMSC can best meet those needs. We ask that all interested clients submit a two-page project proposal to be considered for this year’s program. GMSC is run under a non-profit structure. As such, a fee is charged that covers the operating and administrative costs of the program, including a significant proportion devoted to the team’s research activities.

“GMSC is truly an amazing opportunity for the marketing students. Certainly a real-life experience. The clients were definitely high caliber. Having repeat clients is evidence of the imminent value for them. And the students’ presentations showcased their insight, research, presentation skills, communications skills, problem solving, teamwork, etc. Another side benefit of the experience for both the students and judges was networking!” 2010 GMSC Judge

To learn more about becoming a client, contact: Pavel Rodl, Co-Director, Client Relations Liz Roques, Co-Director, Client Relations

BECOME A JUDGE What does it mean to be a GMSC judge? GMSC judges are mid- to seniorlevel executives and experienced marketing and consulting professionals from across the Atlanta business community. Judges will be a part of the GMSC Presentation Day from approximately 7:30 AM to 1PM on Thursday, May 5, 2011. Serving as a judge is an excellent networking opportunity for meeting students, clients, and other GMSC judges. All judges will have the opportunity to evaluate two student team presentations, which consist of a thirty minute presentation and a thirty minute question and answer session. Judges score each team on presentation skills, organization, and content, and can offer additional comments that provide valuable feedback for the students involved as well as the clients. This year's Presentation Day will feature a morning keynote speaker followed by student presentations on challenges currently facing leading-edge organizations. Judges sign a non-disclosure agreement for the benefit of the sponsoring corporations and non-profit organizations. Being a judge is also a fantastic way to be involved with Goizueta Business School and to participate in the showcasing of some of the nation's top MBA talent. To learn more about becoming a judge, contact: Scott Struletz, Director, Community and Judging


WHAT THEY SAID “Rigorous hardly begins to define the GMSC experience. But if it were November of my first year again, I would not hesitate to fill out the application a second time. For students like myself, who did not have “traditional” business backgrounds, GMSC provided an opportunity to analyze and solve a real-world business problem, and a chance to interact with real business clients. I truly believe that GMSC will be one of the most significant, most rewarding, and most memorable experiences of my time at Goizueta. It required me to commit time and effort beyond what was necessary for my other classes, but through the late nights and hard work I was able to develop sincere friendships that can only be achieved by overcoming a challenge together.” Adam Harper, JD/11MBA Member of Team Coca-Cola (2010) “GMSC was an experience unlike any other in my education at Goizueta. The class taught me how to approach and break down a complex business challenge in order to generate sound recommendations. The fact that I had the opportunity to learn these skills in a ‘safe’ academic environment with ample support from faculty, second year students and my teammates gave me the courage to take risks and truly test my own thinking. During my internship, I called upon many of the skills I learned in GMSC as I tackled my summer project, and I have no doubt that my participation in the program was a key driver of my success on that project and my eventual full-time offer. GMSC was one of the things that motivated me to pursue my MBA at Goizueta; as a result, I had very high expectations going into the program, all of which were exceeded. GMSC is truly an unparalleled educational experience and I am so grateful I had the opportunity to be a part of this amazing program.” Kate Carpenter, 10MBA Member of Team Solvay Pharmaceuticals (2009) “Being a career changer with an interest in marketing and strategy, this course helped me learn how to solve ambiguous real-world marketing problems from a consultant’s perspective. Prior to business school, I did not have any idea how to effectively tackle a situation like this. Additionally, I really enjoyed the client interaction and the opportunity to fine-tune my presentation skills, which then led me to successfully complete my internship with a full time job offer from American Express. Although the course is rigorous and requires a significant time commitment, Dr. Shah’s enthusiasm and willingness to help her students achieve makes it all worth it!” Kristin Bolton Keys, 10MBA Manheim Team Guide


SAVE THE DATES 2010 September 10

Client Proposals Due

October 15

Project Selection

October 26

Client Project Presentations

November 30

Student Team Introductions

2011 January 10

Project Commencement

January 27

GMSC Networking Night


Project Papers Delivered


Presentation to Client and Stakeholders

May 5

Final Presentation to Panel of Judges


GMSC LEADERSHIP COMMITTEE Each year, a dedicated group of MBA students is elected to oversee the sponsorship, setup, and execution of the GMSC projects. If you are interested in learning more about GMSC, participating as a judge, or sponsoring a project, feel free to e-mail one of this year's leadership team members by clicking on his or her name:

GMSC Leadership Team: Please send general comments, questions, and suggestions directly to the leadership team.

Reshma H. Shah Faculty

procurement for IBM Corporation; in litigation consulting for PricewaterhouseCoopers, and in strategic brand planning for Unilever, PLC. At Goizueta, Reshma teaches marketing strategy, integrated marketing communications and customer behavior at both the undergraduate and MBA levels. She is an active member of the American Marketing Association, the Association for Consumer Research, and the Academy of Marketing Sciences. Reshma's research interests are in the areas of strategic alliances and marketing partnerships. Her current efforts are focused on customer relationship management and global account management strategies. She is also interested in the link between integrated marketing communications strategies and firm performance.

Reshma is an Assistant Professor in the practice of Marketing. Professor Shah joined the Goizueta faculty in 1997 after completing her Ph.D. in marketing from the Katz Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh. She has B.S. in business administration from the University of Illinois – UC and an MBA from the University of Southern California. Reshma has also worked full time in corporate component

Danielle “D” Miller 11MBA Managing Director

Melissa Schwartz 11MBA Director, Marketing and Public Relations

Liz Roques 11MBA Co-Director, Client Relations

Jennifer Camp 11MBA Director, Academics

Pavel Rodl 11MBA Co-Director, Client Relations

Scott Struletz 11MBA Director, Community and Judging

David Hart 11MBA Director, Finance and Operations

DeAnna Munn 11MBA Director, Student Teams


Overview of Project Proposal The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) is an industry organization that is comprised of the leading pharmaceutical and biotech companies in the US, including Solvay Pharmaceuticals. The mission of PhRMA is to help patients by developing and marketing new medicines. Ethical relationships with healthcare professionals are a key part of the mission, and accordingly PhRMA has developed guidelines for interactions with healthcare professionals. In July 2008 PhRMA guidelines were updated and the changes took effect in January 2009. Some of the changes that will impact Solvay directly include:


• Prohibition of non-educational and practice-related items – pens, pads, mugs, or any other similar “reminder” items will no longer be allowed to be distributed to healthcare professionals. • Restriction on meals accompanying informational presentations – specifically, meals offered in connection with informational presentations should be provided within the office or hospital setting. Dinners at restaurants outside these settings are prohibited. With these new guidelines, Solvay needs to reevaluate how it will promote its products to healthcare professionals in the therapeutic areas in which Solvay specializes. Additionally, many of Solvay’s competitors will not be required to comply with the new guidelines, as these companies are not members of the PhRMA organization. Sales representatives for these companies will still be able to bring reminder items to healthcare professionals as well as hold informational presentations at restaurants. As a result, Solvay will not only have to determine how to access healthcare professionals using alternative means, but how to do so in a way that is as effective or more effective than traditional means. While the new guidelines took effect in January 2009, adjustment to the new marketing and sales environment will take some time. Solvay is asking the GMSC project team to develop a short-term and long-term strategy that will guide the marketing team and sales force at Solvay on how to navigate this newly defined marketplace. The GMSC project team should focus its recommendations on Solvay’s drug AndroGel, in the Men’s Health therapeutic area. Specific deliverables include: Market Analysis • Examine Solvay’s current marketing strategy for AndroGel – specifically how information is communicated to physicians and other key stakeholders. • Understand current approaches to segmentation among customer base. • Examine Solvay’s competitors and their marketing strategies. • Understand preferences and behaviors of targeted healthcare professionals for collecting information about pharmaceutical drugs and other treatment methods. Marketing Strategy Recommendation • Identify effective communication tools for Solvay to implement in the newly defined market, including promotional materials and delivery tactics (mailing, sales rep, Internet, etc.). • Assess patient and healthcare professional education opportunities.


• Determine ways to maximize the effectiveness of a Solvay sales representative. • Identify other creative ways to convey information to healthcare professionals regarding medical conditions and treatments. • Provide a financial analysis of the proposed marketing strategy. Outcomes, Results and Client Comments


Given the competitive environment and the impact of PhRMA regulations, to successfully market AndroGel, Solvay must focus on the effectiveness of its sales force. Specifically, the team recommends that the sales representatives remain the most viable and realistic option for communicating with doctors about AndroGel. There are opportunities for improvement in Solvay’s existing sales strategy and approach, including the following: • PhRMA-focused modifications • Improvements to influencing tactics • Focus on patient compliance The GMSC team suggested a number of impactful changes that Solvay can implement to increase the effectiveness of its sales force, including improved training, education, sales materials, and doctor segmentation strategies. Solvay has evaluated the feasibility of the students’ recommendations and plans to incorporate some of the tactics involving improvements to training the sales force and increasing patient compliance. Client Comments The GMSC program was an exciting process that produced actionable results. The students on the team were highly motivated and committed to the project throughout the semester. They delivered data, analysis, and recommendations that went beyond the project objective, and they were always professional when interacting with Solvay employees. The support that the students receive from faculty, consultants, and more senior students is evident and those of us involved in the project probably learned as much from them as they did from us. In addition, Solvay hired two interns from the GMSC team, who were quickly able to contribute and were among the top performing interns this year. After three years of GMSC participation, we hope to be able to participate again this year. Each year we have not only received excellent recommendations, but the program has also been an excellent tool for identifying talent.


GMSC Overview  
GMSC Overview  

This document is an overview and describes the Goizueta Marketing Strategy Consultancy