Bateman legacy continues
Published: Thursday, September 19, 2013
Updated: Thursday, September 19, 2013 17:09
With only 28 days to implement a campaign, Loyola’s Bateman team triumphed as the Public Relations Student Society of America 2013 Bateman Case Study Competition winner.
The 2013 Bateman team won first place in the PRSSA competition with their “Step Up, Reach Out!” anti-bullying campaign, continuing Loyola’s winning Bateman legacy. Since 2000, the Bateman team has placed in the top three of the competition every year, and on seven of those occasions, the team took home the first place title.
Being a member of a team with a long winning streak was intimidating for 2013 team member and public relations senior Leah Whitlock.
“It definitely put the pressure on, but it acted as motivation,” Whitlock said.
Charlie LaRock, A’13, and 2013 Bateman team member, agrees that the Bateman team’s legacy was daunting, but it was a reason he came to Loyola to study public relations.
“When I applied to Loyola I knew I wanted to study PR,” LaRock said. “The biggest selling point was the Bateman Team.”
The national public relations association assigns all teams a topic every year, and Loyola’s team, along with other participating teams across the country, must develop a public relations campaign that coincides with that client or idea.
“We had 28 days to build a successful campaign and implement it,” Whitlock said. “The entire process is a challenge.”
Cathy Rogers, associate professor and adviser to Loyola’s Bateman team, is pleased with her team’s past successes and their use of creativity. In the past, the Bateman team has created campaigns for Seat Belt Safety, Nutella and a campaign focusing on the importance of going to college called “The Bling Starts Here Campaign.”
Rogers said that the “Voodoo Whatcha Wanna...For Ya Wallet” campaign for Ally Financial in 2011 stands out to her as an original campaign.
“The focus was to encourage financial literacy and the team’s statement was ‘If you make good financial choices, you’re in control of your life and not someone else,’” Rogers said. “They dressed up a life-size inflatable doll as a college student, named her Lola, and used her as the spoke person for the campaign.”
One memorable Bateman team moment for Rogers is when the 2001 team that promoted financial literacy was able to pass a bill through the Louisiana State Legislature.
“I drove two of the team members to Baton Rouge where they presented their recommendation for a bill to the Education Subcommittee of the Senate,” Rogers said. “Eventually, both the Senate and the House of Representatives passed the bill to allow financial literacy to be part of the curricula in Louisiana high schools.”
Each year in the PRSSA Bateman Competition, only three teams across the U.S. get to present their campaigns to the client, and the client chooses the winning campaign.
According to Rogers, the 2013 team’s strongest assets were “research and being culturally relevant.”
“Research drives every decision they make,” Rogers said. “They really tap into the hook to make a client’s message culturally relevant.”
As for the newly announced 2014 Bateman team, Rogers is optimistic.
“There is a lot of enthusiasm for this year,” Rogers said. “I can’t wait.”
Shamara King can be reached at email@example.com