Drury Ad Contest gets creative this year

Saturday, May 1, 2021
Competing advertisements for Mocha Jo’s and the fictional Game On are part of this year’s advertising contest at Drury in Monett. The ad that earns the most votes will run in The Monett Times and Connection Magazine. Contributed photo

Fictional business, coffee shop ads aim to bring foot traffic to Broadway

The annual Drury Ad Contest is looking a bit different this year, with students getting creative in ways to promote downtown and businesses on Broadway.

A partnership between The Monett Times, Drury University’s Monett campus and two local businesses — in this year’s case one business and the Chamber — the contest is voted online and highlights the culmination of an advertising and public relations course offered at Drury’s Monett campus.

Readers are invited to vote for one of two ads: Mocha Jo’s and Game On, the latter being a fictional business created by the students in cooperation with the Monett Chamber of Commerce to highlight business possibilities in downtown Monett.

The ads were created as part of a 16-week integrated marketing communications course taught by Joel Thomas at Drury’s Monett campus, beginning in January. Students enrolled in the class were divided into two groups, with each group working to create an integrated marketing communication plan.

“Typically, we work with two or three existing businesses,” Thomas said. “But, this year, Jeff [Meredith, Monett Chamber director], wanted students to come up with a new idea for a business in downtown Monett, and they created Game On, which has games, a bowling alley, a restaurant and a bar, similar to a Dave & Buster’s. They built the concept, did renderings and made ads to promote what Monett could use or need to spur growth or new business opportunities.

“It promotes people thinking outside the box for what they can do in Monett or downtown. It’s really cool, and students did a fantastic job. I think Jeff and the community will be blown away by what they’ve done.”

For the Mocha Jo’s campaign, that group went another direction, creating three ad concepts plus a radio commercial that will run for one month in Aurora.

“The goals for students are multi-faceted,” Thomas said. “For the first eight weeks, they really do book work and build a foundation of knowledge. in the second eight weeks, they take what they have learned and work with clients to apply that knowledge and get real-life experience.

“It’s interesting to see the transformation of some students. They may not think they are creative, but they end up building something they are proud of and enjoy doing it.”

The ultimate goals for the campaigns is rooted in community promotion.

“We want the students to get the right messaging, attract the right audience and build clientele,” Thomas said. “We want them to help build the business’ brand and customer base. this year, we also hope to build foot traffic in downtown Monett and spur new business ideas.”

The marketing campaign built by the students is valued at $3,000. It includes three print and digital ads for The Monett Times and Connection magazine, three radio commercials for Talon Media in Aurora, plus a press release for mass distribution. The print and digital ads will run in The Monett Times for two weeks. Radio commercials will air for one month. The press release will go to area media outlets.

The Mocha Jo’s team is led by director Andrew Forsman, with Life360, which owns Mocha Jo’s, and includes students Martha Fernandez, Susy Salas, Stephanie Stein and Jose Charquero.

The Chamber team includes Meredith as director and students Michael Canales, Isamar Ibarra, Star Rueda, David Salas and Domitilia Sandoval.

Additional participants include: graphic designer Brandon Kelley, brand director with Vellomedia Strategic; Cathy Lewis, with Talon Broadcasting; and The Monett Times Editor Kyle Troutman, Senior Contributor Murray Bishoff and General Manager Lisa Craft.

Past participants in the contest include: MO Wings, Coast to Coast, Bruner’s Pharmacy, Critical Links, J&J Floorcovering, Edgewood Creamery, The Bullpen and Hungry Hollow Brewing Company.

Voting will continue through May 10 in this article on The Monett Times website.

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