On March 30, 2019, SJSU’s Spartan Ad Club hosted the American Advertising Federation’s National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC) for District 14. Wienerschnitzel was this year’s sponsor, with over 200 colleges across the country creating marketing campaigns for the largest hot dog chain in the United States.
The SJSU NSAC team are a mix of eight advertising and public relations students from the on-campus ad and PR agency Dwight Bentel & Hall Communications. “We worked on the campaign for seven months, starting in September, then winding down both strategic and creative findings to a 20-page plans book summarizing an integrated marketing campaign,” says Dannah Magbanua, student team lead.
In addition to a proposal, the students were required to create a 20-minute live pitch to perform in front of four judges comprised of industry professionals and Doug Koegeboehn, the chief marketing officer of Wienerschnitzel.
On the morning of the competition, the SJSU Student Union theater was packed with eager students from various universities looking to claim first place. With five schools lined up to pitch, SJSU’s team went fourth and delivered an energetic delivery of the campaign, “Unleash the Dog.” Capitalizing on the hot dog’s lighthearted nature, the students created social media strategies, bumper ads, magazine copy, and a television commercial.
The SJSU student team won first place, beating schools such as University of Califorina, Berkeley and University of Nevado, Reno. “ We were very please and felt that this was a testimony to the hard work that the team and I put into the project,” says Dannah. I can personally say that being on the NSAC team has been the most gratifying moment of my college experience. Finding guidance and mentorship through Dwight Bentel & Hall Communications gave me the skills and determination to take on the advertising world as I graduate this spring, while working with my colleagues creating life-long friendships that are worth far more than winning the competition.”
Other team members included Brett Barlow, Annie Coleman, Sergio Fermor, Sarah Helwig, Stephanie Herevia, Maneek Rajasansi, Kendra Rodenburg and Cosette Velazquez.