A new vision for Lakeland’s One Stop Shop proved successful with about $20,000 in sales and more than 400 transactions from Nov. 30 to Dec. 2.
“Everyone who was involved did an amazing job from bringing in merchandise to rebranding the event. We wanted to attract college students, so we brought in vendors that would appeal to them with ideal price tags,” says Taylor Wells, a second-year agribusiness
student and member of the Student-Managed Enterprise
’s (SME) procurement team. The procurement team was in charge of bringing in the vendors and merchandise.
The fourth annual event featured 45 vendors from across Western Canada, up from 35 last year, and also boasted locally sourced, unique, hand-crafted goods with an average
price tag of $25. The shopping destination had a range of merchandise from jewelry and home furnishings to clothing and food. About 40 agribusiness students planned and managed the one-of-a-kind student-led shopping experience.
It was previously known as Santa’s One Stop Shop. Taylor Veilleux, one of the event’s marketing coordinators, says it was important to take this year’s event in a different direction.
“We took on the role of completely rebranding the event by
developing a new name, a new logo and changing our marketing approach. We wanted to create a new ambience, so that it was more generalized and less about Christmas. The transition was seamless,” Veilleux says. She and her teammates increased their social media presence and paid for radio ads to promote the event.
Cole Ambrock, agribusiness instructor and SME faculty advisor, says he was impressed with the guerilla marketing tactics employed by the marketing team.
"The students used a New Holland Tractor to advertise the
shop's hours and promote the event, which could be seen by passing traffic. A huge thank you from the event team to Webb’s Machinery and Dan Webb," Ambrock says.
To streamline the event, the students also invested in a barcode machine that helped them control inventory and set prices efficiently, says Darla Stepanick, an agribusiness instructor and SME faculty advisor.
“This event is completely student-run and this year’s group did a great job. They really made this event their own and targeted the college student demographic. The money raised is reinvested into the One Stop Shop and goes into the agribusiness program’s bottom line,” Stepanick says.
Lakeland’s One Stop Shop is a unique opportunity for agribusiness students to use the knowledge they acquired in the classroom and apply it to a real life scenario. Not only do they learn how to plan and manage an event, but they learn to think like businesspeople. They gain leadership, communication and financial skills by interacting with other businesses and with their customers.
Photos: (Top-Bottom) Agribusiness students organize and set-up Lakeland's One Stop Shop merchandise. The students had complete control over the fourth annual event.