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Need help with your market research?

Gain valuable customer insights and industry knowledge through The Marketing Agency.

Are you looking to understand your customers better and gain fresh insights from your industry? 

Struggling to allocate time for marketing research? Seeking the latest industry trends and customer insights?

Our postgraduate marketing students can help!

Our postgraduate students in Digital Marketing, International Marketing, and Marketing Analytics need real businesses to collaborate with as part of their learning process. By participating, your business becomes their client, benefiting from their expertise and receiving data-driven suggestions to enhance your marketing efforts - all at no cost to you.

Join us and leverage the skills and knowledge of our students to drive your business forward.

How The Marketing Agency can help

The Marketing Agency offers your business free support with market research. Our Master’s students act as a marketing agency and bring new ideas and customer insights to your business. We can help your business

  • Gain valuable insights from your customers about your product or service enabling your business to create tailored marketing
  • Create buyer personas and define your target audience 
  • Study your competition and understand what your customers think of your competitors 
  • Conduct market research in response to a marketing challenge
  • Explore what are the newest trends in your market

How it works

You can take part in the project as a business of any size, in the public, private or third sector. 

  • You'll submit a brief with your requirements as a client for consumer research to the University, which we'll review. You will be sent a client brief template. 
  • One of our tutors will work with you to agree on the research brief, to ensure it can be achieved with the time, resources and capabilities of the students available and ensure the project outputs are valuable for your business. 
  • Small student groups with 4-6 students from across our MA Digital Marketing and MA International Marketing degrees will be assigned to your project.
  • The students will work with you to design a consumer research plan (proposal) for your approval, before conducting project research and providing a tailored debrief presentation at the end of the project. You can request the raw data from students if they conduct primary research.

Student teams are supported by an experienced tutor who has extensive global experience working with clients across many business sectors.

Our tutors assign students to briefs at the beginning of each semester - September and January. 

Previous Clients

We've worked with a wide range of organisations including

  • Montezuma's Chocolate
  • The Tomato Stall
  • Other World Escapes
  • Messy Chef
  • X-Zony
  • IBM
  • Bold Bean Co
  • Let's Mochi
  • Island City Living
  • Fresh Relevance
  • The Sports Barista
  • SmartyPlants

What we expect from clients

We recommend that you spend around one hour a week helping your student team. This is an average, so time commitment may vary throughout the project.

You'll need to:

  • meet with the students at the beginning of the project to answer any questions about the brief
  • introduce your student team to the staff members they'll work with
  • provide the students with any additional resources and contacts they need
  • make time to respond to queries from the team
  • meet with them (in-person or online) once a fortnight for an update on the project and to agree on next steps
  • attend the team's end-of-project presentation to give feedback on their final recommendations

You are not required to formally mark students' final presentations, but your feedback as a client will be gladly accepted. You can invite any other interested parties to this presentation.

For many students, this is the first time they will have taken on a consulting project so any help and advice from you in running the project is welcome. You'll have a key role in inspiring the team through sharing your own experiences as well as any suggestions on how the team can improve.

It's important to remember that students are expecting to learn and work as consultants, not as extra an resource to carry out day-to-day work. You should allow your student team to use their creativity to explore new avenues, including those that challenge the assumptions of the organisation and client.

Project Timeline

Each academic year we run two rounds of the Consumer Research Project, one starting in late September and the second starting in February.

Round 1

  • Deadline for client applications: 30 August 2024
  • Projects assigned: Late September 2024
  • Students work on the project: October 2024 - December 2024
  • Feedback and presentations: December 2024

Round 2

  • Deadline for client applications: 17 January 2025
  • Projects assigned: Late January 2025
  • Students work on the project: February - May 2025
  • Feedback and presentations: May 2025

Contact The Marketing Agency

If you have a marketing project that you think our students could help you with, please get in touch by emailing studentprojects@port.ac.uk.

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