Texas Tech University

KCBD: TTU Business College duo wins Academic of the Year award

December 7, 2011

Provided by Texas Tech Rawls College of Business

Texas Tech University Rawls College of Business professor and senior associate dean Debra Laverie, Ph.D., along with co-author William Humphrey, were named the 2011 Mobile Marketing Top Academic of the Year by the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) for their work entitled "Brand Community and Location Service Social & Mobile Research."

Laverie and Humphrey were among the first 56 individuals worldwide to receive The Smarties(TM) -- a new name for MMA's awards, which reflect the growth and unique character of the mobile channel. The awards were presented late last month in Los Angeles.

"Social media's adoption has been staggering," Humphrey said. "Our work in the realm of social media in the mobile marketplace -- such as smartphone applications -- is not only necessary but also demanded by today's consumers."

Laverie's and Humphrey's work focuses specifically on location-based smartphone applications like Foursquare where users "check-in" to a site and share their location with friends. Their conceptual research theorizes greater change in consumer behavior in those receiving mobile frequency offers. With that thought in mind, the trend is likely to grow significantly, according to their research, as providers such as Groupon and LivingSocial use the platform, and American Express can administer exclusive cardmember deals at check in.

"This was most notable during November's 'Small Business Saturday' event where those who would spend $25 at a registered business would get a $25 statement credit," Laverie explained. "Plain and simple, positive reinforcement plays to the sense of self, or more simply put: people will respond to a call to action if they get something in return."

And, they both added, in today's mobile world -- business has to adapt its marketing focus appropriately.

Laverie's research at Texas Tech explores the role of consumption in everyday activities, branding, macro issues in marketing, sports marketing and the scholarship of teaching and learning. Her work has been published in the Journal of Retailing, the Marketing Education Review and the Journal of Consumer Research to name a few.

Humphrey is a marketing doctoral student at Tech's Rawls College of Business, and is an experienced digital marketing professional with knowledge in the travel/leisure and financial services industries. His research interests include consumer behavior relating to mobile marketing, geolocation targeting and social media.

MMA is a global non-profit trade association established to lead the growth of mobile marketing and its associate technologies. The organization works to clear obstacles for market development and to establish mobile media guidelines and best practices for sustainable growth.