College of Media at Illinois

University of IllinoisCollege of Media

Master of Science in Advertising

Current Students

Advertising Masters students 2012

M.S. Advertising Class 2011-2012

Anshul Agarwal photoAnshul Agarwal
Home City/Country: Modinagar, India
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:National Institute of Fashion Technology, Fashion/Retail Management
Project/thesis title: Effect of real vs. virtual recommendations on consumer purchase decisions
My project aims to understand the role that recommendations play in consumer's product purchase decisions. Specifically, I am interested in exploring the role of real-life recommendations on high-involvement products and if they offer opportunities for virtual recommendation systems of e-commerce websites. I am undertaking a qualitative research where in-depth interviews are the central approach for data collection. Apart from understanding the role of recommendations, the interview questions will also focus on generating insights on the ideal forms of recommendations, as desired by the consumer.


Kim Byrd photoKim Byrd
Home City/Country: Wilson, NC
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:University of North Carolina at Wilmington, B.A. Criminal Justice
Project/thesis title: How improvements in communications technology impact military deployments
Qualitative research will be conducted to determine how communications technology impacts military deployments for the service members, military unit representatives, and the spouses of service member. While many studies have touched on the effects of deployments, little addresses specifically the impacts of recent technology such as Skype or social media outlets that are available to deployed service members and their families.


Enrique Carmona Cortes photoEnrique Carmona Cortes
Home City/Country: Mexico
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:Endicott College, Massachusetts, BS in Communications/Advertising
Project/thesis title: Que What!? The Role of Language as an Ethnic Cue in Consumer - Brand Relationships of Mono-linguistic Anglo Americans
Past literature has provided support for two theoretical bodies of knowledge: Brand Personality in Self-Image & Culture/Ethnicity in In/out group Recognition. The present research aims at finding the link between these two concepts: to supporting the possibility of ethnic-categorizing cues in advertising (such as language) disrupting existing relationships of self-categorization between brands and mono-linguistic Anglo-Americans.


Xuedan Chen photoXuedan Chen
Home City/Country: China
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:Xiamen University, China, B.S. Advertising and Mathematical Finance
Project/thesis title: How people use multiple social media in terms of involvement and engagement, and the motivations behind it
This research will bridge the academic research gap that people's use of social media as a general idea and people's use of certain social media(like Facebook). Also, I will design a handbook of people's social media portfolio so that marketers can come up with a better social marketing plan to target at them.


Brandon Clear photoBrandon Clear
Home City/Country: From all over because my father was in the military growing up but identify myself best with Williamsburg, Virginia
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:Clemson University, MS in Marketing
Project/thesis title: Battle of the Brands: The Study of Synergy---Team and Individual Brands
My project focuses on brand synergy and the relationship between individual vs. team brands within an organization. My study seeks to provide various organizations with the tools to reach an "ideal" synergistic relationship.


Megan Harrison photoMegan Harrison
Home City/Country:Edwardsville, Illinois
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:Bachelor’s in Animal Sciences, University of Illinois
Project/thesis title: Sit. Stay. Play
Sit: Have a sit-down conversation with your veterinarian about your pet's weight. Stay: Stay at a body condition score of 4-5 for your pet. Play: play or exercise with your pet for 20-30 minutes per day. My professional project will be geared toward pet owners with overweight pets. A survey will be conducted that will investigate how pet owners obtain information on helping their pets lose weight. After analyzing the survey, I will create a social marketing campaign that will encourage pet owners to get their pets healthy.


Yangyaoxi He photoYangyaoxi He
Home City/Country:Changsha/China
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:Central South University, Bachelor of Economics with a minor in International Economy and Trade
Project/thesis title: Branded Entertaining viral videos on YouTube
With more and more brands using web videos to create their digital entertainment properties, branded entertainment is rising on one of the most important entertainment platforms nowadays—YouTube. Since viral video is a promising form of branded entertainment on YouTube, this study intends to find consumers’ experience, reactions and expectations towards branded entertaining viral videos. Nethnography and interviews will be used as main research methods to generate in-depth data. At the end, suggestions about strategically using branded entertainment in terms of viral videos to advertise on YouTube will be made.


Xiaoshan Li  photoXiaoshan Li
Home City/Country:Jinan, Shandong, China
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication, Washington State University, B.A. COMMUNICATION with Advertising Option
Project/thesis title: Tone Your Taste--what sonic cues could do for your taste
The project emphasizes on exploring how tonality (major vs. minor key) affects consumers’ taste of sweet and sour food.


Wei-Hsuan Lu  (Patricia) photoWei-Hsuan Lu (Patricia)
Home City/Country:Taiwan
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:National Taipei University; B.S. in Foreign Language and Applied Linguistics
Project/thesis title: When East Meets West: Consumer Acculturation and Foodways
Consumer goods in many ways are representative of cultural value and identity. Among all, food consumption is the main interest in my research since food is essential to Chinese culture in all kinds of social activities and business life. Foodways, in many aspects, reveal who you are, where you are from and what you believe in. This project aims at exploring the lived experience of foodways among Chinese graduate students and unveiling the role of food in the acculturation process.


Rick P. Maturo  photoRick P. Maturo
Home City/Country:Palatine, IL
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:University of Wisconsin-Madison—B.S. Journalism-Strategic Communication; Communication Arts-Research & Rhetoric
Project/thesis title: Warehouse Clubs, Sampling and Scanners…Oh My!—A Model of Data Capturing for Immediate Product Attitudes and Purchase Intent for In-store Sampling
Historically, in-store sampling has been a staple of sales promotion within the warehouse club segment of retail. However most brand managers implementing this type of promotion are missing out on a cost-effective opportunity to mine these events for immediate and pertinent market data as it relates to immediate purchase intent and attitudes toward the sampled product. By utilizing a bar-code scanner similar to those used in most retailers’ POS systems, marketers and brand managers alike can capture samplers’ immediate reactions to sampled products and monitor their shopping behavior following the initial trial for future brand interactions and sales lift. This process can be completed by examining consumers’ available POS data extracted from their member cards (e.g., Sam’s Club Card). Moreover, it has been found that this emergent method could be implemented for current established products, product-line extensions and new products alike.


Jason H. Nesbitt photoJason H. Nesbitt
Home City/Country:Glenview, IL
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:University of Minnesota, B.A in Strategic Communications
Project/thesis title: Getting Ripped or Getting Ripped Off: A content analysis and best practices guide for dietary supplement advertising
My project aims to create a best practices guide for advertising dietary supplements. A content analysis of current supplement advertisements, along with an extensive literature review, will help build the guide.


Ayesha Qamar photoAyesha Qamar
Home City/Country:I am a Pakistani who was born and raised in Saudi Arabia.
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:B.S. in communication studies and psychology from State University of New York in Oneonta, NY. Both these majors helped me in creating a sound foundation in advertising.
Project/thesis title: The influence of product design features on people's intentions to spread word-of-mouth.
My final project involves different features of product design and how they relate to liking a certain product/brand. I am also interested in seeing if certain product features help to create positive word-of-mouth.


Kristina M. Schiller  photoKristina M. Schiller
Home City/Country:Scaggsville, Maryland
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:St. Mary's College of Maryland; B.A. in Psychology, minor in Music Performance
Project/thesis title: Because Social Media is Already Complicated Enough: A Best Practices Guide to Avoiding Pit Falls and Party Fouls
For my professional project, I'm combining my passion for social media with the academic world. I am looking at several major social media outlets (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, and YouTube) to determine "best practices" for any given campaign using these sites. I will be using case studies from each site to analyze what is being done well, what can be done better, and to ultimately devise a best practices guide to use social media as creatively and effectively as possible.


Yoo Jin Song (Gina) photoYoo Jin Song (Gina)
Home City/Country:Seoul, Korea
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:English language and literature and Business, South Korea
Project/thesis title: Self-presentation on social networking service and attitudes toward promotional emails: from the perspective of personality and privacy
I'm interested in how/whether self-presentation on social networking service (SNS) is connected to people's attitudes toward promotional emails. My assumption is that people who present about themselves a lot on SNS will have more positive attitudes toward promotional emails. I want to look at this relationship in terms of personality and concern for privacy. It's still in the process of being developed, so we'll see how it goes!


Yulong Tian (Aaron) photoYulong Tian (Aaron)
Home City/Country:Tianjin, China
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:Xiamen University, Bachelor of Art in Advertising
Project/thesis title: Guideline for Location-based Advertising Industry in Chinese Cities
The aim of this project is to analyze and combine both American customers’ usage and behavior of Location-based Advertising and Chinese customers’ adoption of previous wireless tech based devices and services. This project will provide a practical industrial guideline for the development and promotion of Chinese Location-based Advertising in the scenario of Chinese culture and business. Qualitative research method, especially in-depth interview, is selected as primary research method in this study.


Zongyuan Wang photoZongyuan Wang
Home City/Country:Shandong, China
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:Nankai University, English Literature and Translation, double major: International Economics and Trade
Project/thesis title: Advertising Devaluation under Perceptual and Cognitive Load
Previous research has discovered that when internet viewers process web contents in a goal-oriented manner, they devaluate the advertising around the major web contents. I'm interested in examining how internet viewers devaluate banner advertisements when they perceptually process the major web contents vs when they cognitively process them.


Wen Zhang photoWen Zhang
Home City/Country:Fuzhou, China
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:YangEn-University, Bachelors in Advertising
Project/thesis title: Marketing campaign for L-Large Fashion Design Company
High education and high income levels have earned Asian Americans the title of “model minority” among marketers, however, this attractive market has been ignored for years due to its variety. By using the qualitative method, I want to find out a best marketing approach to this segment.


Xinran Zhao (Effie) photoXinran Zhao (Effie)
Home City/Country:Beijing, China
Undergraduate Institution, degree and major:Beijing Foreign Studies University, B.A. in International Business and associate degree in English Literature
Project/thesis title: In-game Advertising on Social Networks and Cultural Comparison
The project is a qualitative study with netnography and interviews analyzing why in-game ads in social network games are effective and how cultural backgrounds will make a difference in players' game playing behaviors, social network usage and their perception of advertisements. Two social network sites (Facebook and Qzone) and four games(Castleville, Sims social, Magic cards and QQ farm) from America and China are examined which will shed lights on how brands should incorporate into this promising area of advertising.