Marketing 101

One of the core courses in the second half of the first semester is Marketing Management. We are very fortunate to be taught by Prof. Wasim Azhar. If you ever get a chance to attend a class taught by him (he also teaches the Stanford Executive program), just take up the opportunity. While he’s not a typical “marketing guy” that one would expect, he has tons of experience and great insight. Another pleasant difference I noticed was the focus on quantitative aspect of marketing, which was a bit counter to my expectations. Plus, he teaches this class so effortlessly, which is a big contrast to the accounting class in the mornings. This is also one of those courses where the more diverse the class is, the richer the discussion. Overall, I just love it!!

The course is a lot of work though. It has at least two case studies every week. We just finished a group mid-sem exam, selling Colgate Palmolive toothbrush. No kidding, I think everyone in our group spent 15-20 hours on this last week. It was grueling. The final is worse – we have to decide between two cases.

Some of the more interesting cases that we have done are:

  • BMW Z3 launch, BMW films and Swatch- great success stories which makes you want to become a marketer. Great non-traditional marketing ideas
  • Golflogix – good case for a new, small company with a new product
  • Tanishq – I just loved this one because it was about India and about chic jewellery. The program has limited focus on international aspects of business (at least so far). It’s not expected but I would have liked to read more about India/ Chinese companies.
  • Colgate Precision toothbrush – did you know a company could have 170 people working for 3 years to come up with a toothbrush design and tests. This one sort of tells you how FMCG companies look at things that we use and do not often notice in everyday life.

I am a bit pre-disposed to liking marketing though…I do product marketing currently and I feel it builds your intuition about what the customers would like. I am sure it has some connection with psychoanalysis ….not sure what though…but would like to find out.

So now I am looking for a technical solution to the energy problem, in India and market it …easy isn’t it 😉 ? Seriously, if you have an idea, feel free to share….this junction seems to be my ultimate nirvana for now…


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