When student Morgan Alexandra George began a research paper for a marketing class, she was encouraged by Dr. Ismet Anitsal to take it the next level. It ended up earning a research award and is now under review for publication in an academic journal.
Working with faculty to succeed
In spring 2020, George, marketing major, was assigned to write a research paper on a topic of her choosing.
“I chose to do a deep dive into the effects that influencer marketing has on adolescents,” said George. “There is a distinct difference in how adolescents perceive what they see verses what an adult sees. When an adult sees someone on the internet use a product or promote something on their page, they know that the person is most likely being paid for the post. Adolescents, on the other hand, lack that train of thought and will take what they see at face value and that could be dangerous or problematic.”
George worked with Dr. Ismet Anitsal, marketing department head. Through weekly meetings, Dr. Anitsal helped George develop her ideas into a more cohesive work presented in an academic tone.
“Dr. Anitsal provided me with countless resources and assisted me along the way to find new sources. He is the one who gave me the idea to formulate the conceptual framework proposed in the paper and helped me get it to its fullest potential,” she said.
Expanding the collaboration
Halfway through the project, Dr. Meral Anitsal of Tennessee Tech University, joined the collaboration and introduced an entirely new perspective. The three would collaborate via online meetings.
“Dr. Meral Anitsal also provided me with additional resources and new ideas that should be introduced to the work,” George said.
Their collaborative work was presented at the 2020 International Fall Conference of Institute for Global Business Research (IGBR) held online on October 7, 2020.
The paper titled “Influencer Marketing: A Conceptualization of the Developing Phenomena Among Adolescents” by George, Anitsal and Anitsal garnered a Distinguished Research Award in this conference.
The abstract was published in the IGBR Conference Proceedings, and the full paper is under review at the Global Journal of Business Disciplines.
“Teaming up with both of them really gave me a chance to see what it was like to work in a professional collaborative experience,” George said. “With their help and all of the experience that I was able to gain, I walked away with much more than a grade for a class. I walked away with a completely new set of skills that I can carry with me into the professional world.”