College Coach

Babson Professor William Bygrave, Case Director

Carl Hedberg, Case Writer

Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship

© Babson College, 1999.


A college admissions advisory service, started by two Babson College graduates, wrestles with critical marketing decisions on how to boost their company's name/brand recognition. The two young entrepreneurs sell advice and counseling services to parents, high schools and to corporations who offer the services of College Coach as a benefit to their employees. The company provides services such as: determining the appropriate mix of target colleges, advice on how to maximize financial aid, practice interviews etc. The company has grown recently and a decision must be made whether to acquire more building space or pump money into advertising and promotion. Also, the company must decide if it should continue to pursue all three market segments-- parents, high schools, and corporations. The two-year-old company's early success has been noticed by college test prep centers such as Kaplan and Princeton Review. A buyout is possible, which makes the marketing decision all the more important since tens of millions of dollars may be at stake.

Location of the company: Brookline, Massachusetts

Years spanned by the case: 1998-1999

Industry segments: Educational Consulting

Stage of the company: Start-up

Age of the entrepreneurs: Mid 20's

Key Words: Entrepreneurship, marketing, education, venture capital


A 30-minute DVD is available for this case. Please place orders through ecch.

Teaching Notes

A case teaching package, written by William Bygrave, is available for this case. The teaching package includes strategies for case presentation, key concepts, solutions to the assignment questions in the case, and suggestions for the most effective ways to work this case into a course.