James Madison University has announced that two teams from its iMBA program secured a total of $20,000 for local nonprofits for being named global winners in the 2013 Google Online Marketing Challenge.
More than 12,000 students from 80 countries competed in this year's Challenge. Participants create online marketing campaigns with Google AdWords, a pay-per-click service using customized search terms, to drive traffic to their clients' websites.
A team of iMBA students was the first-place global winner in the social impact category, which recognizes outstanding online marketing efforts on behalf of a nonprofit partner. As a result of their work, Google will make a $15,000 donation to the Augusta Regional SPCA.
Another team from the iMBA program placed third in the category and secured a $5,000 donation from Google to the Virginia Quilt Museum in Harrisonburg.
In addition, JMU marketing students took home the Challenge's top prize for social media marketing, which highlights the integration of AdWords with effective social media strategies.
A JMU team won the Challenge's Americas region -- all of North, Central and South America -- in 2009, 2011 and 2012, but this is the first year that Madison has had global winners in the competition.
For more information, visit www.jmu.edu/news/2013/08/27-google-online-challenge-winners.shtml