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Online classes

Effective: Late Spring 8-Week, 2017/2018

MKTG 478: Marketing Management

Course Description

Examination of the role of the marketing manager in analyzing, planning, implementing and controlling the marketing programs of an enterprise. Case work is used.

Prerequisite: MKTG 310

Proctored Exams: None

Syllabus Contents



  • Kotler, Philip. Marketing Management. 15th ed. Prentice-Hall, 2016.
    • ISBN-978-0-13-385646-0

MBS Information

Textbooks for the course may be ordered from MBS Direct. You can order

For additional information about the bookstore, visit

Course Overview

This course is designed to help students learn how to manage the marketing function as applicable in a wide variety of settings:  product and service firms, consumer and business markets, profit and nonprofit organizations, domestic and global companies, and small and large businesses. The course offers a systematic framework for understanding how marketing decisions are made.  It focuses on formulating and implementing marketing management strategies and policies, a task undertaken in most companies at the strategic business unit level.  The marketing management process is important at all levels of the organization, regardless of title applied to the activity.  Each week the student will have the opportunity to apply the concepts learned to an interesting real-world scenario. The course relies heavily on cases and the text provides many examples to help bring light to the advanced principals discussed in the text.

Technology Requirements

Participation in this course will require the basic technology for all online classes at Columbia College:
  • A computer with reliable Internet access
  • A web browser
  • Acrobat Reader
  • Microsoft Office or another word processor such as Open Office

You can find more details about standard technical requirements for our courses on our site.

Course Learning Outcomes

  1. Discuss and analyze the goals of marketing management as they apply to strengthening brands.
  2. Analyze the function of marketing in a global environment.
  3. Analysis of external environments and how these environments impact marketing management.
  4. Evaluate alternative solutions to marketing problems.
  5. Develop effective and strategic marketing analysis skills.
  6. Determine the role of each of the elements of the marketing mix within the marketing strategy.


Grading Scale
Grade Points Percent
A 450-500 90-100%
B 400-449 80-89%
C 350-399 70-79%
D 300-349 60-69%
F 0-299 0-59%
Grade Weights
Assignment Category Points Percent
Discussions 80 16%
Dropbox Assignments 120 24%
Final Project 100 20%
Midterm Exam 100 20%
Final Exam 100 20%
Total 500 100%

Schedule of Due Dates

Week 1
Assignment Points Due
Introductions 0 Wednesday
Discussion 1 5
Discussion 2 5 Sunday
Dropbox 1: Holistic Marketing 20
Week 2
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 3 5 Wednesday
Discussion 4 5 Sunday
Dropbox 2: Research Trends…New Tools 20
Week 3
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 5 5 Wednesday
Discussion 6 5 Sunday
Dropbox 3: Segmentation, Targeting and “Got Milk” 20
Week 4
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 7 5 Wednesday
Discussion 8 5 Sunday
Midterm Exam 100
Week 5
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 9 5 Wednesday
Discussion 10 5 Sunday
Dropbox 4: Setting and Adjusting Prices 20
Week 6
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 11 5 Wednesday
Discussion 12 5 Sunday
Dropbox 5: Zara’s Fast Fashion 20
Week 7
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 13 5 Wednesday
Discussion 14 5 Sunday
Dropbox 6: Integrated Marketing Communication 20
Week 8
Assignment Points Due
Discussion 15 5 Wednesday
Discussion 16 5 Friday
Final Project: Marketing Plan 100
Final Exam 100 Saturday
Total Points 500

Assignment Overview


There will be two discussion topics each week to engage you in discussions of the text and outside resources. The first discussion is due by Wednesday and the second by Sunday (except in Week 8, when the second discussion is due by Friday). You are expected to give your own initial response to the questions posed and then react in a significant way to at least two of your fellow students in order to gain full credit.

Dropbox Assignments

You will write six short papers in this course, referred to as dropbox assignments. Most will be 2-4 pages in length. You will find more details about the topics and expectations for these assignments in the Course Schedule section below.

Final Project

The final project for this class is a marketing plan for either a company you work for, a company you wished you worked for, or a start-up company you might like to get going. You will develop the elements of the plan over the course of the class, from the initial idea to the distribution and communication plan. Your grade for each item will be based upon the thoroughness and completeness of your discussion, your ability to apply the weekly concepts to a real situation of your own choosing, and your ability to be both creative yet grounded in reality in your thinking. Make the plan a workable real life scenario. Please see and use the outline/grading rubric that appears in the content area of the course. The final project is due by Friday of Week 8. You will find more information about the elements of the plan and the expectations for the project in the course.

Midterm and Final Exams

There will be two exams in the course covering the readings in the text. Each exam will include a combination of multiple-choice and true-false items.

Course Outline

Click on each week to view details about the activities scheduled for that week.

Week 1: Understanding Marketing Management
Chapters 1-2
Introduce yourself in the "Introductions" topic of our class discussion, our "virtual classroom." Please give us more than your name. Include your home town, profession, major, hobbies, pets, interest in marketing, and any other information that can help us get to know you.
Discussion 1
Societal Forces. In chapter one, pages 13-19, there is a discussion regarding the new marketing realities (major societal forces). Choose two items. Include a definition of the key terms used. How does this represent a change from the past? Why do you feel it is an important change? A one-page response would be appropriate. Post your response in discussion by 11:59pm CT Wednesday.
Discussion 2

Mission and Vision play a major role in the strategic planning process. Basic questions about our business need to be confirmed (see chapter two). The mission statement provides information about the special purpose of the firm, its opportunities, and direction. A vision looks beyond the mission to envision a future; it provides added challenge and creative tension for the firm.

Search for information about Starbucks. (A supplemental video is included in the Content area) and then answer the following questions. Discussion 2 is due by 11:59pm CT Sunday night.

  1. What is the business?
  2. Using Porter’s generic strategies (p. 52) which strategy is Starbuck’s pursuing?
  3. Who is the customer?
  4. What is the value provided to the customer?
  5. Does the company espouse any values?
  6. What societal changes might account for the success of Starbucks?
  7. What is the company’s mission?
  8. Develop a vision for the future of Starbucks.
Dropbox 1: Holistic Marketing

Define “holistic marketing.” Define each of the four major components of holistic marketing (p. 21-22). Search for information about Coca-Cola. (A supplemental video is included in the Content area), then describe how the company uses a holistic approach to marketing (or tell me if you feel they do not do a good job of using a holistic approach). A good paper should be at least 2 pages. Completeness and insightfulness are always appreciated. Your paper is due in the dropbox by 11:59pm CT Sunday.

Additional Task: Read Marketing Plan
Please read the sample marketing plan on pages 61-65 as a prelude to beginning to write your term paper/marketing plan. See the outline of the required plan and the grading rubric that appears at the very end of this syllabus.
Week 2: Capturing Marketing Insights
Chapters 3-4
Discussion 3

Gathering Information and Measuring Market Demand. Go to the Sprite web site and check out the commercials, music, and ambiance of the site. Discuss the following:

  1. Who is the target audience for Sprite?  Discuss in detail and give your reasons.
  2. Using government information or other sites, how many people in the USA are in the target audience you described above?
  3. Design and discuss a research method you might use to find out if your target audience likes the taste of Sprite vs.  Sierra Mist.

Include the research method you might use (p102-106); your sample plan (p.110); and what types of questions you might ask (107)

Your discussion is due by 11:59pm CT Wednesday night

Discussion 4

Neuro-marketing. In chapter four (p. 111), please read the Marketing InSight titled, “Understanding Brain Science.” Research the concept of neuro-marketing online. Find an example of its use and provide a discussion. What do you personally think of this new approach to marketing? Your thoughts and comments are due here by 11:59pm CT Sunday night.

Dropbox 2: Research Trends…New Tools

Traditional marketing research has been about asking questions of sample respondents from a well-defined sampling of your target population. In addition to traditional survey research, firms have several new tools now available to them. On page 70 there is a discussion of Big Data.  The other tool is called Social Media monitoring. Check out the YouTube video demo of the Social Media Monitoring tool from Radian6 …

Your assignment is to define these terms.  Discuss how they are different than traditional survey research. What types of information might you get from each of these tools that would be different then survey research? Finally choose a national brand and discuss the insights you might get from each of these tools.

Your paper should be a minimum of 2 pages single spaced or 4 pages double-spaced. The assignment is due by 11:59pm CT Sunday.

Week 3: Connecting with Customers
Chapters 5-9
Discussion 5

The Lifetime Value of a Customer. On pp. 138-147 there is a discussion of the lifetime value of the customer and building loyalty. Now review the article in your text about TESCO, the European grocery store (pp. 154-155). Consider the concept of lifetime value as might be applied to your favorite grocery store.

Use the calculation process noted on page 139, making any assumptions you like to come to a conclusion. You may also want to try out the Customer Lifetime Value Calculator at Harvard’s Business School (in the course Content area).

What is your estimate of your own lifetime value (LTV) to your primary grocery store? What actions could you suggest to make your LTV increase for your grocery store?

One could argue that the concept of LTV relies on long term loyalty to the store. Most loyalty programs are built on price discounts which can be easily matched. So how can you build true loyalty, like loyalty to country or family?  How can you do this in business?

Do some research on the general subject of loyalty as a personal value? A supplemental video is included in the Content area (optional). Use your understanding of loyalty to add to the discussion about how grocery stores can keep a customer for a lifetime. Please post your response by 11:59pm CT Wednesday.

Discussion 6

Business Markets Buyer Behaviors. Let’s discuss the potential purchase of a corporate jet: a Cessna corporate jet in fact. Please review Cessna’s site and answer the following questions.

  1. Which buying center influences (pp. 194-195) are likely to have the strongest influences on a company’s purchase of a new aircraft?

  2. How can Cessna incorporate the influence of these factors in its marketing planning?

  3. At what stage in the buying decision process is the web site targeted (see pp. 198-204)?Explain your response.

  4. Compare and contrast this site with the site for imaging equipment marketed by General Electric. Which site serves the purchasing process better

Please post your response by 11:59pm CT Sunday.

Dropbox 3: Segmentation, Targeting and “Got Milk”

In this assignment we look at segmentation and minorities in the United States.  To begin, please do some internet research on the California Milk Producers and the “Got Milk” marketing campaign.  Consider the three major minority groups in the USA:  Hispanic Americans, African Americans and Asian Americans.   For each group, describe the segments in terms of:

  1. Overall population size (USA & California)
  2. Demographics like age, education, and income (USA and California)
  3. What are the media habits of each group  (USA only)
  4. Describe the nature of families for each group (USA only)

After describing each group, choose the first group you would target if you were the California Milk Producers and if the assumed goal is to increase the use of milk in California.  Base your targeting on the criteria listed in your book, including accessibility, ability to buy, actionability or the responsiveness of the group you choose, overall size, and sustainability of the market over time.  Please discuss your targeting in detail.  Your report should be a minimum of 3 pages. Your paper is due by 11:59pm CT Sunday night.

Week 4: Building Strong Brands
Chapters 10-12
Discussion 7

The Branding Proposition. The early part of chapter ten in your text gives you a framework for understanding what a brand is. A brand is everything the customer understands about your offering. It is the image you present in the marketplace, and that is a vital and strategic consideration. Look at the following five levels of meaning.

  1. Value: The benefits to price equation.
  2. Values: What do you stand for?
  3. Attributes: What is it that you sell? What are the physical attributes?
  4. Benefits: What do the attributes do for the consumer?
  5. Personality: Can you describe your offering like a person (fast, sad, dangerous, sociable, etc)?

Every brand is built on one or more of these five basic foundational elements.  You can compose or decompose any brand based upon these five elements.   Your discussion assignment is to find two brands that use a different major element of the five basic elements as the primary basis of the brand.  Find a brand that relies on value, such as Hyundai, a brand with a persona, like Brawny, or a brand like Leica cameras, which relies on fine lenses (attribute).  Describe the positioning of the brand.   How is the brand positioned compared to the competition?  Find a commercial for each of your chosen brands that helps to position the brand along the lines you describe and include a link to the commercial in your discussion. Post your response in the appropriate discussion topic by 11:59pm CT Wednesday.

Discussion 8

Dealing with the Competition: The Burger Wars. Dealing with the competition has been compared to the theories of war. Over 20 centuries ago, in the Art of War, Sun Tzu put down the ideas that have guided wars ever since. In one chapter, Sun Tzu discussed how the strengths and weaknesses of our enemy as well as our own should help to make clear the strategies we should use against our competitors. These techniques for battle are at the core of many business strategies as noted on pages 337-343.

McDonald’s has had some significant challenges recently.  Please do some internet research on the current issues at McDonald’s and especially their competitive challenges.

If you were the vice president of marketing for Burger King, and knowing your competitor is McDonald’s, how could you use two of the “war techniques” to win the marketing war against McDonald’s?   Please place your response in the appropriate discussion topic no later than 11:59pm CT Sunday.

Midterm Exam
Your midterm exam covers chapters 1-12. Please plan to take the exam sometime between Tuesday and Sunday 11:59pm CT. The exam is 100 questions, 80 multiple choice and 20 true-false. Additional information about the exam will be given prior to the exam opening.  Please contact me with questions or in case of an emergency. The midterm counts for 100 points out of 500 points for the course, 20% of your grade.
Week 5: Creating Value

Chapters 13-16

Discussion 9
Setting Product Strategy. Review the Toyota article under Marketing Excellence on page 396. Review the concepts of how products can be differentiated (pp. 370-375). Look online for information on the Toyota Tundra or another Toyota brand like Camry and discuss how they have used the principles of product differentiation. Your response is due by 11:59pm CT Wednesday.
Discussion 10

The Service Element. Services can either be an offering to be purchased (travel agent, bank, college, doctor, are all services offerings) or a services component to the sale of a physical product (warranty, guarantee, etc). In the last 15 years we have been interested in raising the quality level of all of our services offerings.

Dr. Len Berry has done considerable research in this area and has come up with the key determinants of service quality (p. 420 at the bottom). Choose a service offering you are familiar with. Using three of the points of Dr. Berry’s model, discuss how the service offering can be improved. Post your answer in the appropriate topic by 11:59pm CT Sunday.

Dropbox 4: Setting and Adjusting Prices

Pricing has changed in the current digital world (see page 462). There are seven points noted in the referenced section. First, discuss in detail two of the concepts noting specific examples from the internet. Next, discuss two instances where you used the internet during a purchase process. Describe both instances. Discuss for each how pricing was affected based upon the digital environment.

Your paper should be a minimum of 1.5 page single-spaced or 3 pages double-spaced. Include citations of all sources. Submit your response to the drop box no later than 11:59pm CT Sunday.

Week 6: Delivering Value

Chapters 17-18

Discussion 11

Trends in Value Delivery. Some of the current trends in the delivery of value (channels, logistics, supply chain) include e-commerce; VMS; use of multi-channel approaches; mobile commerce; social retailing; and more. From your own research, discuss how two companies are using are using these techniques to improve their delivery of value to consumers.

Post your response no later than Wednesday at 11:59pm CT.

Discussion 12

Packaging. Going to market and working through the process of logistics and retailing requires some very important decisions about your packaging. A package serves many functions, including presenting your brand’s image, protecting the product, providing special functionality and added value, carrying your advertising message, allowing special promotions, and aiding in visibility. Grab a product off your pantry shelf. Tell us the name of the manufacturer and the product.  Describe the packaging. What functions does the package provide? Can you think of things the manufacturer might do to get more marketing use out of the packaging?

Post your response no later than Sunday at 11:59pm CT.

Dropbox 5: Zara’s Fast Fashion

Review the Zara’s case on pages 551-552. Review the video.

How could the Zara’s model work in another industry? Be specific about the industry and the process.

Second, what are the potential social costs of the Zara’s model? Reference p345 and also in the video, note the issue of disposability of clothing. Discuss in detail. 

Reference your sources. Your paper should be approximately 2 pages single-spaced.

Submit your write up via the Dropbox by 11:59pm Sunday CT.

Course Evaluation
Please evaluate the course. You will have an opportunity to evaluate the course near the end of the session. A link sent to your CougarMail will allow you to access the evaluation. Please note that these evaluations are provided so that I can improve the course, find out what students perceive to be its strengths and weaknesses, and in general assess the success of the course. Please do take the time to fill this out.
Week 7: Communicating Value

Chapters 19-22

Discussion 13

Marketing Communications Mix. On page 560 the marketing communications mix is defined in terms of eight modes of communications. These eight models include: Advertising; public relations; sales promotion; events & experiences; online and social media; mobile marketing; direct and database marketing; and personal selling.

Select a favorite brand that you have purchased. Find two communications modes used by your chosen brand and share with us what you can from each communication (show links to ads, promotions, PR, etc). How were you influenced by the communication? What other communication mode would you recommend they use and why?

Response due by 11:59pm CT Wednesday night.

Discussion 14
Sponsorship: Part Promotion, Part PR, Part Advertising. Sponsorship has become an increasing useful form of marketing communications. In a world of cluttered media, sponsorship is highly targeted and gets to potential customers where they live, so to speak. Choose a brand that has chosen to sponsor something (example: Avon and the breast cancer walks). Why do you think they chose to affiliate with this event or property? Who is the target audience and is this a good approach to reaching the target and why?  Explain your reasons thoroughly. Post your response no later than 11:59pm CT Sunday.
Dropbox 6: Integrated Marketing Communication

Don Schultz at Northwestern University came up with the concept of IMC during the early 1990s.  It involves the active coordination of all of the communications mix to create a consistent message and to communicate value to the target customer. The eight major elements of marketing communications are described on page 560 in your text.

Visit the web site for Mountain Dew and view some commercials for Mountain Dew. Also, visit a grocery store and look for the way Mountain Dew is merchandised. Describe how each communications element has been used to market Mountain Dew. How has the campaign been integrated throughout the various elements? Your report should be 1½ pages, single spaced. It is due by 11:59pm CT Sunday.

Week 8: Conducting Marketing Responsibly for Long-Term Success

Chapter 23

Discussion 15

Ethics and Social Responsibility in Marketing. Define the terms ethical marketing and social responsibility in marketing. A useful article is linked here. Discuss how the concepts are different and in some ways similar. Cite a company and or brand you feel is acting in a socially responsible manner and why.

Your answers are due by 11:59pm CT Wednesday.

Discussion 16
Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility Part II. On page 684 in your textbook, please read the Starbuck’s case. Three questions are noted at the end of the case. Please answer these in the discussion area. Post your response no later than 11:59pm CT Friday.
Final Project: Marketing Plan
The final project for this class is a marketing plan for either a company you work for, a company you wished you worked for, or a start-up company you might like to get going. Your grade for each item will be based upon the thoroughness and completeness of your discussion, your ability to apply the weekly concepts to a real situation of your own choosing, and your ability to be both creative yet grounded in reality in your thinking. Make the plan a workable real life scenario. You will find more information about the elements of the plan and the expectations for the project in the course. Submit to the Dropbox by 11:59pm CT Friday.
Final Exam
The final exam will be similar to the midterm. We will cover Chapters 13-23. Please plan to take the exam sometime between Tuesday and Saturday CT 11:59pm. The exam will be 100 questions, 80 multiple choice and 20 true-false. Additional information about the exam will be given prior to the exam opening. The final counts for 100 points out of 500 points for the course, or is 20% of your grade. Please contact the instructor with questions or in case of an emergency.

Course Policies

Student Conduct

All Columbia College students, whether enrolled in a land-based or online course, are responsible for behaving in a manner consistent with Columbia College's Student Conduct Code and Acceptable Use Policy. Students violating these policies will be referred to the office of Student Affairs and/or the office of Academic Affairs for possible disciplinary action. The Student Code of Conduct and the Computer Use Policy for students can be found in the Columbia College Student Handbook. The Handbook is available online; you can also obtain a copy by calling the Student Affairs office (Campus Life) at 573-875-7400. The teacher maintains the right to manage a positive learning environment, and all students must adhere to the conventions of online etiquette.


Your grade will be based in large part on the originality of your ideas and your written presentation of these ideas. Presenting the words, ideas, or expression of another in any form as your own is plagiarism. Students who fail to properly give credit for information contained in their written work (papers, journals, exams, etc.) are violating the intellectual property rights of the original author. For proper citation of the original authors, you should reference the appropriate publication manual for your degree program or course (APA, MLA, etc.). Violations are taken seriously in higher education and may result in a failing grade on the assignment, a grade of "F" for the course, or dismissal from the College.

Collaboration conducted between students without prior permission from the instructor is considered plagiarism and will be treated as such. Spouses and roommates taking the same course should be particularly careful.

All required papers may be submitted for textual similarity review to for the detection of plagiarism. All submitted papers may be included in the reference database for the purpose of detecting plagiarism. This service is subject to the Terms and Conditions of Use posted on the site.


There will be no discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, ideology, political affiliation, veteran status, age, physical handicap, or marital status.

Student Accessibility Resources

Students with documented disabilities who may need academic services for this course are required to register with the office of Student Accessibility Resources. Until the student has been cleared through this office, accommodations do not have to be granted. If you are a student who has a documented disability, it is important for you to read the entire syllabus as soon as possible. The structure or the content of the course may make an accommodation not feasible. Student Accessibility Resources is located in Student Affairs in AHSC 215 and can be reached by phone at (573) 875-7626 or email at

Online Participation

You are expected to read the assigned texts and participate in the discussions and other course activities each week. Assignments should be posted by the due dates stated on the grading schedule in your syllabus. If an emergency arises that prevents you from participating in class, please let your instructor know as soon as possible.

Attendance Policy

Attendance for a week will be counted as having submitted any assigned activity for which points are earned. Attendance for the week is based upon the date work is submitted. A class week is defined as the period of time between Monday and Sunday (except for week 8, when the work and the course will end on Saturday at midnight.) The course and system deadlines are based on the Central Time Zone.

Cougar Email

All students are provided a CougarMail account when they enroll in classes at Columbia College. You are responsible for monitoring email from that account for important messages from the College and from your instructor. You may forward your Cougar email account to another account; however, the College cannot be held responsible for breaches in security or service interruptions with other email providers.

Students should use email for private messages to the instructor and other students. The class discussions are for public messages so the class members can each see what others have to say about any given topic and respond.

Late Assignment Policy

An online class requires regular participation and a commitment to your instructor and your classmates to regularly engage in the reading, discussion and writing assignments. Although most of the online communication for this course is asynchronous, you must be able to commit to the schedule of work for the class for the next eight weeks. You must keep up with the schedule of reading and writing to successfully complete the class.

No late discussion posts will be accepted.

No other late assignments will be accepted unless the instructor receives notification of extenuating circumstances prior to the due date. Each student has the responsibility of contacting the teacher if they are unable to complete an assignment by the due date. Late assignments, when accepted, will be graded on a time available basis and will be penalized 10% of the grade for the item.

Course Evaluation

You will have an opportunity to evaluate the course near the end of the session. A link will be sent to your CougarMail that will allow you to access the evaluation. Be assured that the evaluations are anonymous and that your instructor will not be able to see them until after final grades are submitted.

Additional Resources

Orientation for New Students

This course is offered online, using course management software provided by Desire2Learn and Columbia College. The course user guide provides details about taking an online course at Columbia College. You may also want to visit the course demonstration to view a sample course before this one opens.

Technical Support

If you have problems accessing the course or posting your assignments, contact your instructor, the Columbia College Helpdesk, or the D2L Helpdesk for assistance. Contact information is also available within the online course environment.

Online Tutoring

Smarthinking is a free online tutoring service available to all Columbia College students. Smarthinking provides real-time online tutoring and homework help for Math, English, and Writing. Smarthinking also provides access to live tutorials in writing and math, as well as a full range of study resources, including writing manuals, sample problems, and study skills manuals. You can access the service from wherever you have a connection to the Internet. I encourage you to take advantage of this free service provided by the college.

Access Smarthinking through CougarTrack under Students -> Academics -> Academic Resources.


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