Marketing Management Back

This session will present an overview of the Marketing discipline and will allow Explorers to participate in a group marketing research project.


  • Marketing
  • Engineering


By the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Define marketing management.
  • Understand what marketing managers do.
  • Demonstrate a key marketing management concept.


  • Computer with Internet access, to be able to view the suggested video and websites


  • Copy and distribute the Coffee Comparison chart (one per group), or provide electronic access to the form.
  • Preview all videos and websites in advance of the meeting to plan activities and confirm that all content is appropriate for your Explorers.
  • Take the online virtual tours of the three companies you select to compare.


Reminder: Any time you use an outside source, be sure you follow the content owner's or website’s permission requirements and guidelines.


The following are suggested resources that Advisors may find helpful in planning this session:


Text in italics should be read aloud to participants. As you engage your post in activities each week, please include comments, discussions, and feedback to the group relating to Character, Leadership, and Ethics. These are important attributes that make a difference in the success of youth in the workplace and life.


What Is a Marketing Manager?

Discuss these key points with participants.

Marketing is the process by which a company is able to communicate with its consumer audience and drive sales of products or services. A marketing manager is the person responsible for managing the resources associated with this means of communication.

What Do Marketing Managers Do?

A marketing manager supervises the marketing resources and activities of a certain product or a business. They can be responsible for several services or products, or be in charge of a single product. Also, the marketing manager may determine which customers to target, define what the company’s marketing advantages are, and also analyze the competition in the market.


The information that follows in Activity 1 and Activity 2 is from the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook for Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers. (Source:


Marketing managers typically do the following:

  • Work with department heads or staff to discuss topics such as budgets and contracts, marketing plans, and the selection of advertising media
  • Plan promotional campaigns such as contests, coupons, or giveaways
  • Plan advertising campaigns, including which media to advertise in, such as radio, television, print, online media, and billboards
  • Negotiate advertising contracts
  • Evaluate the look and feel of websites used in campaigns or layouts, which are sketches or plans for an advertisement
  • Initiate market research studies and analyze their findings to understand customer and market opportunities for businesses
  • Develop pricing strategies for products or services marketed to the target customers of a firm
  • Meet with clients to provide marketing or technical advice
  • Direct the hiring of advertising, promotions, and marketing staff and oversee their daily activities

Work Environment

Because the work of advertising, promotions, and marketing managers directly affects a firm’s revenue, people in these occupations typically work closely with top executives. The jobs of advertising, promotions, and marketing managers are usually stressful, particularly near deadlines. They may travel to meet with clients or media representatives.


How to Become a Marketing Manager

Most marketing managers need a bachelor’s degree. Courses in business law, management, economics, finance, computer science, mathematics, and statistics are advantageous. For example, courses in computer science are helpful in developing an approach to maximize online traffic, by utilizing online search results, because maximizing such traffic is critical for digital advertisements and promotions. In addition, completing an internship while in school can be useful.

Important Qualities

Important qualities for a marketing manager include the following:

  • Analytical Skills: Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers must be able to analyze industry trends to determine the most promising strategies for their organization.
  • Communication Skills: Managers must be able to communicate effectively with a broad-based team made up of other managers or staff members during the advertising, promotions, and marketing process. They must also be able to communicate persuasively with the public.
  • Creativity: Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers must be able to generate new and imaginative ideas.
  • Decision-making Skills: Managers often must choose between competing advertising and marketing strategies put forward by staff.
  • Interpersonal Skills: These managers must deal with a range of people in different roles, both inside and outside the organization.
  • Organizational Skills: Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers must manage their time and budget efficiently while directing and motivating staff members.


The median annual wage for advertising and promotions managers was $96,720 in May 2014. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $45,060, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $187,200.

The median annual wage for marketing managers was $127,130 in May 2014. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $65,980, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $187,200.

Most advertising, promotions, and marketing managers work full time.


Coffee Comparison

Share with Explorers that there is a guiding concept for many in the marketing field called the “Four Ps,” the key ideas that make up the “Marketing Mix,” which describes the points that must be addressed in order for an initiative to be successful. In 1960, professor E.J. McCarthy of Michigan State University introduced the concept of the Four Ps, which include the following:

  • Product (or Service)
  • Place
  • Price
  • Promotion

You might find the video, “The Marketing Mix and the 4 Ps of Marketing,” created by, to be useful for Explorers. See


Tell Explorers that they will be doing their own study of the marketing approaches taken by three companies in the booming coffee industry. Explorers will research the companies on their websites, become familiar with the companies’ products and strategies, and record how those companies have addressed the Four Ps. Select three companies with a presence in your area, such as Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts, Peet’s Coffee, Caribou Coffee, or the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf.


Have students work in groups so each group has access to a computer with Internet access. Distribute a blank product chart for each team of Explorers or provide the chart electronically. Allow teams 30 minutes for researching and recording their findings.


After 30 minutes, gather the group for a discussion of their findings. Ask the following questions:

  • How do the three companies differ in their approaches?
  • What do they all have in common?
  • What stood out to you as interesting or unique about each one?
  • Do you have any critiques or things you believe the companies could improve?


Some sample questions are below. They are designed to help the participants apply what they have learned to their own interests. You are welcome to use these questions or develop your own questions that relate to your post or specific focus area.


Focusing Questions

  • What did you learn about working as a marketing manager?
  • What did you learn about the how companies use marketing?
  • What part of marketing interests you most?

Analysis Questions

  • How could you use this information as part of finding a career in marketing?
  • What challenges do you think people who work in marketing face?

Generalization Questions

  • What can you do now, during your time as a student, to prepare you for a career in marketing?
  • Why is marketing important?


After the meeting, address the following:

After the meeting, address the following:

  • Identify what was successful from the meeting.
  • Identify what needed improvement.

Schedule an officer and Advisor planning meeting to prepare for next the post meeting or activity.

Marketing Management Activity Guide
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