The power of co-creation in marketing was the topic of the 13th annual Mike Warne event, which took place at Bournemouth University.
The event was organised by a team of nine final year BA (Hons) Marketing Communications students, who worked with the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) to organise, promote and host the event.
Molly O’Hara was part of the student team and said that she had learnt a lot through the experience.
“I’ve loved every second of it – the team have been absolutely amazing and it’s been really fantastic and a really fun experience,” she said.
“I think your people skills are really enhanced when you do a project like this, you’re under pressure and your time management skills obviously need to work, and you have to be able to work together and collaborate.
“I hope people enjoy the event and I also want to show off what we've learnt as students and that we're pretty good at what we do."
The team also secured three industry speakers to talk about their experiences of working with consumers on products and marketing campaigns - Charlie Leaver, brand manager at Global Brands Ltd; Will Roberts, innovation manager at the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI); and Mike Hawkyard, MD of learning game developers GameBrain.
Will Roberts said that co-creation was an important industry trend to talk about.
“If consumers feel like they’ve got a voice, they’ve been part of the creation of that product and if they have increased buy-in, it’s got an increased chance of actually being a sustainable product or service.”
He added: “BU is a very important organisation for the RNLI – it’s a source of fantastic talent and we collaborate heavily in the areas of emerging technology and marketing and allsorts and so it’s wonderful to be part of this event.”
The Mike Warne event, held in memory of the former CIM regional director, has been running in conjunction with the CIM for the past 12 years, celebrating innovation in marketing and addressing topical issues within the industry.
Graham Goode, Senior Lecturer in Marketing Communications, said: “It’s the only student-run event that the CIM have in the UK and what’s nice this year is that the theme is all around the power of co-creation and here we have a fantastic example of co-creation – the CIM and the university have let power go to the students to organise this event for us.
He added: “They’ve taken their studies and the theory and they’ve had a chance to put it into practice.
“I know how hard they’ve worked since the middle of October last year to start really from a blank piece of paper, come up with a theme, locate speakers and conceive how the event is going to take place and promote it – working in collaboration with the Chartered Institute of Marketing and other stakeholders here at the university to really make sure it’s going to be a great success.”