Business Students Get Marketing Insight from Mercedes-Benz CEO

College of Charleston business students recently learned first-hand insights on Mercedes-Benz USA’s multi-channel marketing campaign to launch its new 2014 CLA-class car featuring supermodel Kate Upton and actor William DeFoe. Mercedes-Benz USA President and CEO, Stephen Cannon spent the afternoon with MBA, marketing, finance, and entrepreneurship students during his visit to campus. 

Cannon was invited to the School of Business courtesy of Tommy Baker, president and owner of Baker Motor Company and one of Mercedes-Benz USA’s top dealers in the country.  Baker is also an entrepreneur-in-residence in the School of Business.

During the presentation and Q&A session, Cannon shared how the company leverages mass media to drive strong social media traffic to YouTube, Twitter, and other outlets.  Students asked questions related to driver safety and brand value as Mercedes-Benz introduces its new CLA-class model geared and priced for the younger Generation Y buyer.

MBA candidate and German Fullbright Scholar, Peter Sennekamp from Ascheberg, Germany, spoke with Cannon in German after his presentation. “I was most impressed with Stephen Cannon’s innovative vision of introducing new products and marketing his brand to a younger generation,” says Sennekamp.

“Mercedez-Benz seems to have more freedom in defining its brand here in the U.S., as opposed to in Germany,” says Sennekamp. “You wouldn’t see the German-equivalent of Kate Upton in any Mercedes commercials in Germany!”

About the School of Business
College of Charleston’s School of Business offers seven undergraduate majors, several interdisciplinary concentrations, an honors program in business, an M.S. in Accountancy and an MBA.  Approximately 1800 undergraduate and graduate students attend from as far away as China, Germany and Brazil.  The faculty has research expertise in areas such as global logistics, hospitality and tourism, political economics, financial investment, bankruptcy, business intelligence, real estate, and sustainable business practices. Visit learn more about our students’ achievements, undergraduate and graduate programs, faculty and Centers of Excellence.