Digital Marketing program graduates Samuel Bentz (left) and Erin Harger on Mid-State Technical College’s Stevens Point Campus. Bentz and Harger competed in the MarketPlace Live simulation competition this spring as part of their Digital Marketing capstone class, placing in the 99th percentile worldwide.
June 16, 2021

Mid-State Digital Marketing students rank in top ten percent in worldwide simulation competition

June 16, 2021

Two Mid-State student teams placed in the top 10 percent in the worldwide MarketPlace Live simulation competition used by colleges and universities to assess competence in marketing strategy.

Mid-State’s students participated in the global competition as part of their Digital Marketing capstone class this May. The competition included three levels of simulation, with Mid-State’s students enrolling in the Marketing Strategy Advanced level, the highest in the marketing category for this simulation. 

Winning Team (99th percentile worldwide):
Samuel Bentz, Plover
Erin Harger, Stevens Point

Second Place Team (94th percentile worldwide):
Brandon Schneeberger, Stevens Point
Jessie Rasmussen, Pittsville
Heather Fehrenbach, Marshfield

“Erin and I were pretty surprised to find out how well we did,” said Samuel Bentz, who graduated this spring from the Digital Marketing program. “It was an intense experience, but I absolutely loved that it felt like you were really running a company, and I found myself getting really competitive, trying to maximize returns for shareholders and expand market share. As a marketer in the digital space, it made me realize that you can do all the research and planning you want, but really the market will tell you what to do. It was priceless hands-on experience.”

The MarketPlace Live simulation asks each team to successfully execute a complete business strategy in an evolving market using evidence-based decision making as they “run” an international 3D bike company for two years, competing against other teams as they use marketing strategy and tactics to make decisions and target five different markets. Students must synthesize data from various departments of the simulated company, use savvy resource-leveraging and demonstrate mastery of the integration and application of concepts from different facets of business. They also learn how to promote and price their bikes along with expanding sales offices internationally and forecasting sales to staff those offices.

According to Mid-State Marketing and Business Instructor Debby Wallner, MarketPlace simulation is played in the Digital Marketing program capstone course to evaluate the students’ ability to apply the concepts of the program. Achieving top-ten-percent ranking demonstrates perseverance, agility, problem-solving skills, analytical reasoning, and a sound understanding of key business concepts. It also reflects extraordinary business acumen and work ethic.

“By the end of the simulation, students are so engaged in the competition they forget they are enrolled in a class,” Wallner said. “I am so proud of these students. Their hard work gave them the knowledge, skills and ability to be successful in a digital marketing position, and these results confirm that their abilities can compete on a worldwide stage.”

According to its website, Marketplace Simulations is a family of over 30 marketing and business simulations designed for university business courses and executive business programs and used by tens of thousands of students in learning programs worldwide. Marketplace Simulations allow learners to experiment with business strategies, test ideas and experience the consequences of their actions in a virtual business environment. 

To learn more about Mid-State’s Digital Marketing program, visit