Monthly Archives: May 2012

Textbook Tips

As I embark the start of my second semester I thought I’d share the most recent tips I’ve learned in my back-to-school journey.

Helpful Tips

Textbooks – I remember them being expensive but seriously $200+??  For one book????   For my first semester courses, I fumbled my way through the buying process but now I feel like a seasoned veteran.

Tip #1 – I found that I could cash in my Capital One points for Amazon gift cards.  So I quickly switched from using my American Airlines credit card for everything to my Capital One card.  I charge all my day-to-day purchases on it from groceries to gas and dry cleaning…and even the dreaded tuition payment.  Each month I pay off the full balance earning points for every purchase without the interest charges

Tip #2 – Buy used and don’t by from the nearby book stores.   I found that Amazon offers the best prices, regardless the fact is is basically free for me with my gift cards earned in tip #1.  I bought my Marketing Management book from Amazon but the seller was a company called textbooksRus  (   The price was fair and the book was in great condition.   For my Summer term I went back to Amazon and found my Advertising & Promotions book (thru for only $5.41!!!  New it was $204!!!!  Yes two hundred and four dollars!!!!!  I thought – I have plenty of time before class starts so I’ll give it a try.  The description said the condition was good so I went for it.   After expediting the shipping to get it here sooner in case there was a problem, my less than $15 textbook arrived on my doorstep in perfect condition to start class this week.  What a find!!!!

Tip #3 – Selling books back – I was told campus book stores typically pay more so that is where I tried first…only after I checked out the price textbooksRus would give me.  I promise they aren’t paying me for this endorsement but they more than doubled the amount I was being offered plus they gave me a pre-paid shipping label.  I absolutely love this company!  My check came in the mail today and I’m so excited to go to the bank tomorrow and deposit it.

Tip #4 – This really doesn’t qualify as a textbook tip but it was one I found very helpful my last semester.  I bought an app for my iPhone (iFlash) that allows me to type in flashcards on my computer then sync them up with my phone.  I almost always have my phone with me so they are handy to reference if I’m at work waiting on a meeting to start, sitting in the dentist’s office waiting for my appointment, or even reviewing before going to bed.  I can turn off my reading lamp because the phone lights up and I don’t have to worry about ruining them if I fall asleep and drool on them if they were on the old fashioned note cards.  😉

That’s all I have for now.  I start the summer semester this Thursday.  I’m interested to take my first online class so I’m sure I’ll come across even more tips to share in the student world.  Stay tuned!



Marketing 101: Lesson 1 – The 4 P’s

After completing the first semester in grad school, what is a college girl to do but get away on a girl’s trip to Mexico. Aarrribbbaa!

To recap my vacation, I’ve decided to give a marketing lesson using the 4P’s of marketing. The 4 P’s (Product, Price, Place & Promotion) are elements that make up a marketing mix (the plan of how to bring a product or service to market).

Product – A 5 day, 4 night tropical get-away with 3 great friend friends. Toes in sand, drink in hand and all the nachos or mojitos one could ever desire.

The right product to satisfy the needs of your target customer. Includes the way it is packaged, quality, features, options, services, product’s appearance, function, and support.

Price – Instead of a dollar amount, I’m going to cover the pricing structure of our get-away…but the price was awesome!

Our deal was an all-inclusive package (or bundle in marketing terms), consisting of airfare, condo/hotel accommodations, drinks and private shuttle to & from the airport.

The “perceived value” was so much more than we actually paid for. Our resort (or one could refer to it as compound because it was so big) offered:

an awesome breakfast buffet (what a better way to top off scrambled eggs than with a pastry topped with honey or coffee with Baileys??), beautiful landscaping, a wide variety of restaurants & bars, a gym, a theatre, a discotek, putt-putt golf, tennis courts, a spa, easy access to a beach that had tons of palm trees and never-ending views of the beautiful Caribbean waters, a never-ending pool with a mini-water park for kids (of any age ;)), salsa dance lessons, a mini Mexican market where you could bargain for your purchase and did I mention the endless supply of nachos?

The right product offered for the right price. Pricing should cover the costs and contribute to the product’s image by communicating the perceived value but also counter the competitions offer.

Place – This was definitely the right place for our traveling needs. As mentioned above the compound had everything. The distribution channels (Juan & Domingo) kept us hydrated with mojitos or anything else we wanted to at all times.

The right product at the right price available in the right place to be bought by customers. Refers to the distribution channels used to get product to customer.

Promotion – We went to one of the Barcelo resorts in Playa del Carmen thru FunJet. The research and coordinating of the trip was very simple – one stop shop without pushy sales. What more could a college girl ask for?

Informing potential customers of the availability of the product, its price and its place. (Advertising and selling)

Vacation marketing research results – data shows ….SUCCESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Happy Mother’s Day!

I thought I’d take  break from studying for finals to write a dedication post to mothers and my mom in particular.  Not only is it Mother’s Day, but as I’m wrapping up my first semester in grad school I can’t help but think I wouldn’t be doing this without her.  Not only for the obvious reason that she’s my mom and she brought me into this world but for a valuable lesson I learned from her my senior year in high school.

First let me introduce you to her.  Here’s a picture of my mom on her wedding day.  Is she pretty?

Back to my senior year… I can remember the conversation very clearly.  We were in the kitchen and she was making dinner.  It was probably around 6 pm since we always had dinner at 6:30.  I asked her if there was any way I could go off to college for my freshman year.  The rule in the family was we were to attend the local Jr College that my mom taught at for our first year to get a lot of the basics out of the way and to save money.  So her answer thinking it was a safe one was “You find a way to pay for it and you can go.”

The next day I came home from school with a book probably 400 pages thick of available scholarships.   And if memory serves me correctly… she called me a little shit.  I’m sure it was out of awe and endearment for me taking charge of the opportunity she had propositioned me with.  Well, I applied for anything I could.  If it didn’t exclude me in the list of qualifications, I applied.  Turns out I was granted enough money to go away the following year.

It was at that point in my life, I learned that no matter who you are or how old you are – you can make changes in you own life if you’re willing to work for it.

I’m a thinker.  If I’m dealing with a problem my brain will stew on the issue at hand.  I don’t really talk about it because I feel the answer is within me so I “process” until the answer becomes apparent.  Once it does – I act on it without thinking twice or looking back.  Hence, here I am studying for my last final my first semester in Grad school when a year ago the idea of going back to school wasn’t even a prospect.

So to all my friends that are moms – you just never know what lessons you might teach your kiddo’s unintentionally.  And Mom – I may not have carried on other lessons you tried to teach me about dinner at 6:30 every night (although I do cook in a lot for a single person AND I’ve grown to like more veggies than canned green beans) but I do get by through life with the independence and determination you taught me.   Happy Mother’s Day!


Mindless Fun

In honor of preparing for Finals this week, I thought I’d just share some mindless humor with everyone. Basically because that’s all I have right now unless you want me to share some Statistics fun or Rejecting the Null due to the results of a 2 tailed t test…. I didn’t think so.

Today is Lost Sock Memorial Day…


When : Always May 9th

Lost Sock Memorial Day recognizes your drawer full of unmatched socks. Each unmatched sock represents a missing sock. If you want to read more about the importance of honoring your lost socks – here’s the link.