Madeline Dallessandro, Baillie Latour, Thomas Stedman, DaShawna Levert, and Amy Breslin, winners of the Karma Wellness Water case competition.

Five student members of the Niagara University Marketing Association won first place in a case competition held in conjunction with the St. John Fisher College American Marketing Association Regional Conference Nov. 3, 2018. The team developed a marketing plan for Karma Wellness Water, which sponsored the event.

Students were challenged to create a marketing plan that would increase Karma Wellness Water brand awareness in a cost-effective manner and to develop exciting new ways to educate consumers on the KarmaCap technology through various forms of media. Using information gleaned from the company’s website, seniors Amy Breslin from Springville, N.Y., and Baillie Latour and DaShawna Levert from Rochester, N.Y.; and juniors Madeline Dallessandro and Thomas Stedman from Grand Island, N.Y., developed a presentation that incorporated social, digital, and traditional media, and launched the hashtag #ThatsKarma. They also recommended identifying micro-celebrities who could promote the brand on their social media platforms.

NUMA was named one of three finalists after the opening round of competition and fine-tuned their presentation, incorporating suggestions offered by the three judges, before competing against Saint John Fisher College and Rochester Institute of Technology in the final round. NUMA was awarded a first prize of $300 and each team member received a three-month supply of Karma Wellness Water.

“Being able to experience a professional environment and network with people in the beverage industry is something that I will never forget,” said Latour.

The students also found that the experience gave them confidence in their ability to work with industry professionals.

"Niagara University is proud to offer its students the opportunity to compete academically on real-world projects in an effort to further enrich learning and academic prowess in their areas of interest,” said Alan Stock, Director of the Food Marketing Center of Excellence and Faculty Fellow at Niagara. “Our students competing at a high level and winning the Rochester AMA Karma Water case competition validates the rigor of our College of Business marketing program and the exemplary curriculum we have developed that is complemented by case work in the classroom."

In addition to Karma Wellness Water, conference attendees heard from keynote speakers representing Constellation Brands and Iron Smoke Distillery.