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11th December 2012, 2:56pm
Students encourage businesses to ‘Meet Lincoln’
Winning students Vicki Thompson and Becky Rowlands Advertising students from the University of Lincoln are playing a central role in the creation of a new marketing campaign to promote the city as a quality business tourism destination.

Third year students from the BA (Hons) Creative Advertising course were tasked with creating an innovative new marketing concept for ‘Meet Lincoln’. The initiative has been launched by a group of businesses within the Visit Lincoln Partnership to raise awareness of the city as a place to meet, host conferences and bring events into the area.

The unique proposal formed the brief for the course’s annual live project, which saw students compete against each other to prepare and deliver a “big idea” to the Visit Lincoln team. The winning concept will now be translated into a complete campaign across a range of media.

Creative Advertising course leader, Gyles Lingwood, explains: "The first round of creative concepts that the students presented were really strong. We shortlisted six that would have all worked well as different marketing campaigns. But the winning idea really captured our imagination by using inspiring individuals from the county's past right through to the present day.”

Students Becky Rowlands and Vicki Thompson emerged as the winning partnership following the competitive pitch and will see their concept, which is based around inspirational quotes from notable Lincolnshire figures such as Sir Isaac Newton and Alfred Lord Tennyson, come to life to promote ‘Meet Lincoln’ across the country.

Becky comments: “It was fantastic to be involved in the live project, as we received the brief, brainstormed and created ideas, and presented our final concept in a competitive pitch to real-life business clients, just as we would in an actual working environment.

“The whole process was extremely exciting, and allowed us to put into practice all of the skills that we have been developing throughout the course. From working with a creative partner, to considering a specific target audience and applying important presentation skills, it really enabled us to develop the skill of strategic thinking in a real-life situation.

“We were absolutely delighted to be picked as the eventual winners of the competition, and we can’t wait to see our concept as a complete campaign. It has really given us confidence in our creative ideas!”

The ‘Meet Lincoln’ project was designed to provide students with the unique opportunity to solve a real commercial problem, and create a solution that will bring a tangible benefit to businesses in Lincoln and Lincolnshire.

Visit Lincoln Partnership manager, Emma Tatlow, said: "Working in collaboration with the university on this project is really exciting.  Whilst Visit Lincoln has developed a brand for the city, the students were asked to take this to the next level and come up with a creative concept for business tourism that could be applied to a range of media - such as print advertising, exhibition stands and online ads.

"The students have thrown themselves into the project and I'm impressed with the depth of their research about the target audiences and thinking carefully about Lincoln's unique selling points, and how the city can best be promoted to a business audience.

"Now we have the ‘big idea’ from Becky and Vicki, their winning concept will be passed to a local agency to develop into a workable design. Once this has been done we will reveal the whole ‘Meet Lincoln’ marketing and communications campaign.”

The BA (Hons) Creative Advertising course is also in the process of holding a second live project for its third year students, in which they will respond to an exciting brief aimed at rejuvenating the high street and encouraging people to shop local as part of the Portas Pilot campaign in Market Rasen.

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