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The Sports Business Institute strives to provide industry practitioners with dedicated MBA student support. The projects undertaken by graduate students and overseen by the SBI provide students with real-world sports business experience, while simultaneously allowing industry stakeholders the opportunity to work with top business students.
Below are some of the consulting projects the SBI and its students have worked on. Contact the SBI to learn more about our consulting work.
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC)
In partnership with the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), the SBI has completed a consulting project focused on strategies for international business development. The SBI and UFC are providing Marshall students with real world experience that will benefit the students learning objectives and interests in a changing marketplace.
The SBI focused on developing marketing and community engagement strategies for the USC Baseball program. At its core, this project was designed to assist USC Baseball in increasing engagement with the community, students, alumni, and local businesses through marketing, civic partnerships, and venue initiatives. Building off the USC program’s rich tradition, the SBI worked to enhance the overall visibility of the program. The project consisted of: a benchmarking analysis highlighting best practices for collegiate, minor league, and independent league baseball teams and programs; a list of community engagement strategies to grow local fan-base; and recommendations of marketing campaigns that can effectively strengthen USC Baseball’s historic brand.
The consulting team interacted with USC athletic department personnel and community leaders, while playing an instrumental role in answering critically important economic questions and community engagement issues.
The SBI completed a consulting project for Easton Sports that included recommendations on e-commerce strategy and the utilization of social media to drive revenues. Three Marshall MBA students worked closely with Easton Sports executives over four months to develop actionable recommendations that would help grow this important area of business.
The specific focus of the project was on how Easton can optimize their direct-to-consumer business in a way that drives business and brand. The student team utilized knowledge they acquired in their internet marketing, statistics, consumer behavior, and strategy classes as well as experience gained from their summer internships.
SBI Executive Director, David Carter and Associate Director, Courtney Brunious oversaw the consulting team's work and assisted with producing the final deliverable.
Sports Museum of Los Angeles
The SBI worked closely with the Sports Museum of Los Angeles to develop a comprehensive strategic marketing plan designed to attract groups of visitors and special events to the museum. In order to develop the plan, a student team was called upon to apply the business acumen they have acquired in the areas of market research, strategy, non-profit management, and operations, among others.
SBI Executive Director David Carter assisted the student team in authoring this strategic marketing plan.
The support for this project stemmed from longstanding members of USC Marshall's Board of Leaders who have recognized that the SBI is an important, emerging learning center at USC Marshall.
The project contained two phases. The first addressed executive skills, methods, strategies, and technologies required to best generate revenue and build brand recognition/affinity for emerging or low-revenue sports playing at USC's Galen Center.
With a specific focus on men's and women's volleyball, this analysis examined how, by studying existing 'franchise' sports, USC can take full advantage of its location amidst the geographic home of volleyball, its athletic tradition, and athletics infrastructure, to further increase the teams' market position and branding.
The focus was on uncovering, and then developing, marketing and branding initiatives that will help build fan loyalty, increase sponsorship, and ultimately position both men's and women's volleyball as 'must see' sports.
The project's second phase focused on the executive skills, methods, strategies, and technologies required in sports venue development, operations, and management. With regard to USC, this included leveraging the University's location, tradition, and competitiveness of its teams to help maximize revenue generation at the Galen Center.
Tournament of Roses
The SBI was selected by the City of Pasadena's Tournament of Roses to conduct its "2008 Economic Impact & Demographics Study." This study, which was undertaken with the guidance of Ernst & Young, encompassed all activities relating to the Rose Bowl football game and Tournament of Roses parade, as well as the events supporting these activities.
Anschutz Entertainment Group
The SBI partnered with Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) to determine the costs and benefits associated with electronic marketing campaigns.
This project was designed to assist AEG in its ability to assign a monetary value to each email recipient that unsubscribes from one of their email communications with the express goal being to determine the "Lifetime Value" of each email address captured.
Special Olympics Southern California
The SBI partnered with the Special Olympics of Southern California (SOSC) to determine the optimal location for a potential relocation of its headquarters and annual Summer Games.
SBI Executive Director David Carter directed a team of MBA students in producing a "Request for Proposal" from interested Southern California cities, as well as an "Economic Impact Study," which quantified SOSC's financial worth to a participating community.