2017 Fall Collegiate ECHO Judges’ Brief

ABOUT COLLETTE

Collette is a third generation, family-owned company with offices in the United States, Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom. Our mission is to enhance life’s journey by creating extraordinary travel experiences. Collette operates over 140 guided tours across all 7 continents. We are approaching our 100th year anniversary which will be in 2018. Collette focuses on the overall tour experience and service as we are a 4-star tour operator. Our top priorities are guest safety and satisfaction. We take pride in hiring and retaining the top tour managers in the industry. Our guided tours include all the details of your trip including airfare, hotels, meals, sightseeing, attractions and cultural experiences.

Distribution channels include travel agents as well as direct-to-consumer.

PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT

The Product Development team that creates the guided tours work on a two- to three-year timeline from the planning stages to the release of a guided tour. Guests make their travel plans at a minimum of 6-9 months from travel date. With this extended timeline, Collette needs to understand the travel needs, wants, and trends of consumers before they make their travel decisions.

Our current product lines are:

· Classic – Flagship collection of tours allowing you to marvel at the must-sees, become a part of a new culture, with time to explore on your own (max 44 guests).

· Explorations – Small group tours (avg 18 guests) with culturally immersive adventures that take you off the beaten path. Stay in boutique accommodations and enjoy authentic culinary experiences.

· Spotlights – Single hotel stays and quick getaways with more freedom to explore on your own, but also enjoying the benefits of inclusive guided travel.

· River Cruise – As experts in guided travel we partnered with the experts in river cruising to provide the ultimate river/land touring experience. This is not our core competency but we have a small offering as our consumers like to cruise as well. We are not looking to evolve with river cruise driving the majority of our business.

DEMOGRAPHICS AND MARKETING

Our current core travelers are Traditionalists and older Baby Boomers. The profiles within these generations who travel on guided tours have above average education and net worth. Baby Boomers will increasingly drive the market as Traditionalists will “age out” and Generation X will start to become a significant group to market to. We currently drive awareness and bookings through a national sales team working with travel agents and group leaders, direct mail, online marketing, social media, partnerships, and television.

THE CHALLENGE

Research and evaluate the travel needs of consumers and their expectations for travel experiences today, and for the future. Create an example of an ideal travel experience and develop an integrated marketing plan to entice consumers to travel with Collette. Your budget is up to $5MM to drive leads and convert to booking tours for 2020 and beyond targeting the following audiences.

· 1st Semester Challenge (fall 2016) - Baby Boomers

· 2nd Semester Challenge (spring 2017) – Generation Xers

JUDGING

We are evaluating the following required deliverables using the scoresheet at this link which will also be basis of the scoresheet at Submittable.com.  (Feel free to print the page or bookmark it for your reference).  Half the score (25 points out of 50) is weighted on the market research.  The deliverables are:

1) Executive Summary and Proposal in writing with visual support (elements 1-3 below are separate documentseach with their own page count):

1. 1-Page Executive Summary

2. Written Proposal of no more than 10 pages, excluding appendices

3. Strategic Summary Chart, up to three (3) pages, a two-column document listing key marketing research conclusions in the 1st column and corresponding proposed strategies in the 2nd column.

2) Appendices (max. 20 pages) are backup for the proposal, including research documentation, a detailed annual budget allocated by media and tactics with forecasted results, as well as references and citations.

3) Visual Summary in PowerPoint or a 3– minute video summary.

We are not evaluating the Team Photo or Team Name.

Further details can be found at the "client brief/official rules" link at www.CollegiateECHO.org,

FAQs - see the FAQs page - PLEASE NOTE:

  • We won't penalize fall teams due to a certain omission in the rules this year. While the recommendation for the campaign length is for (or during parts of) one calendar year, we won't penalize teams if they scheduled their campaign in 2019 or not in one calendar year.  (A misprint was recently corrected - for spring teams to run their campaigns in calendar year 2018.) 
  • However - please do expect a realistic timeframe.  
  • Slide deck length.  The rules booklet also did not specify the length of the slide deck so we will not penalize the students over length of the slides.  In the midst of the fall challenge some (not all) teams learned that 20 slides is the recommended maximum as in previous Challenges.  We will not penalize for slide deck length unless you consider it too lengthy.

PLEASE COMMENT

Constructive comments from the judges are essential for faculty advisors teaching the students, in terms of Strengths and Areas for Improvement. (Mandatory fields.) Your constructive comments help instructors to elevate the quality and level of the entries.  So a couple of paragraphs of constructive commentary is better than a few bullets - but if you're time-crunched - at least provide some thoughtful bullet points.  Comments like "best I've seen so far" may not be useful - even if a campaign great, there may be better ones that didn't come across your desk, and many a good campaign ultimately doesn't make it semifinalist, honorable mention, or winner - so if you can phrase that sentiment differently it will be appeciated.

THE SUBMITTABLE.COM PLATFORM

Once you're logged in to the Submittable.com platform, all the entries for your review will be visible on your dashboard.  It it's not readily apparent, click within the dropdown menu next to your name in the upper right of the screen.  You can either download the entries to your pc or see them without downloading right on the Submittable.com.  If it doen't display on Submittable, you might try downloading an item as laptops or devices may have more of the elements required for viewing or playing.

IMPORTANT: SAVING VS. SUBMITTING YOUR EVALUATION

There are two ways to conclude a judging session / scoresheet for an entry: "Save Draft," or "Finalize Review."  

  • "Save Draft" allows you to save the scoresheet to come back at a later time and finish or revise it.  Note: when you click "Save Draft" rather than "Finalize Review," Marketing EDGE does not receive or know about your review.
  • Once you're totally finished with a review - clicking "Finalize/Review" submits your review to us.  It is then closed for further editing – and we receive it. At your request we can reopen a judging scoresheet for further editing and re-submission.