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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Business School : Business Studies

Undergraduate Course: Marketing Strategy (BUST10118)

Course Outline
SchoolBusiness School CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryMarketing strategy has been the subject of considerable research in business and marketing literature over the past five decades. It has become an area of primary concern to all organisations, depending critically on a subtle understanding and analysis of the market. Its importance becomes even greater in today's ever challenging and fast changing business environment.
Course description Too often companies focus upon marketing management related issues and expect these to deliver competitive advantage and better performance. However, very often companies that commit their limited resources to new product development, or launching a new brand, or embarking upon an extensive promotion campaign, or signing up distributors, or publishing pricing details, tend to do so without a detailed examination of their marketing environment and their own competences. Also, far too often companies appear to have the view that if only they could do things right, success would follow. This course aims to discuss these issues and provide detailed discussion of the marketing strategy formulation process and the management and implementation of the marketing mix strategies.


Introduction to the course
Overview of the course assignment
Marketing strategy nature and definitions
Marketing strategy and corporate strategy
The SMM Process: concepts and validity
Strategic Analysis of the Marketing Environment
Strategic Marketing Choices/Decisions
Product Decisions and Strategies
Distribution Decisions and Strategies
Pricing Decisions and Strategies
Marketing Communications Decisions and Strategies
Marketing Strategy Implementation and Control
Feedback, Revision and Exam Tips

Student Learning Experience

In this course, we stress that companies need to consider whether they are doing the right things than doing things right. The philosophy underlying this course is that strategically-oriented companies are geared for long term success and that this strategic orientation must be pioneered by top management and infused throughout the whole organisation. In addition to this overall strategic-oriented culture, a body of marketing knowledge must be understood and a host of specific skills are required including marketing planning, market segmentation and targeting, marketing communications, pricing and distribution, evaluation and control. The course will be taught using a blend of lead lectures, guest speakers, videos and clips and interactive class discussions. To enhance your appreciation of the key challenges of marketing strategy formulation and implementation, mini-case studies, business press and videos may be used in the class in an interactive manner by the lecturer.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Marketing (BUST08004)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Year 3 only. Business Studies Honours entry.
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 Business Studies courses (including at least one Marketing course)at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2017/18, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 20, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Revision Session Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 172 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 60 %, Coursework 40 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Assessment for this course is comprised of the following:
An exam (2 hrs; 2 questions from a choice of 5) will contribute 60% of the final mark.
A group based assignment will contribute 40% of the final mark, 5% of which will be adjusted from peer assessment marks using WebPA.
Feedback Generic feedback on your coursework, together with individual marks, will be available on Learn .

Your examination marks will be posted on Learn (together with generic feedback and examination statistics) as soon as possible after the Boards of Examiners' meeting (normally early-mid June). During the summer months (i.e. mid/end June - end August), you may come into the Business Studies Office (Room 1.11, Business School, 29 Buccleuch Place) to look at your examination scripts. Note that you will not be able to remove any examination scripts from the UG Office as they may be required by the Board of Examiners.

Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand and discuss critically the concept of marketing strategy and appreciate the relationship between marketing strategy and corporate strategy.
  2. Understand and discuss critically the strategic marketing management process; including the specific techniques for carrying out a thorough appraisal of a company's internal and external environments.
  3. Critically appraise the alternative strategic marketing decisions available to organisations.
  4. Understand and discuss critically the implementation (management) of the firm's marketing mix strategies in various market-segments.
Reading List
Core Text:
West Douglas, John Ford and Essam Ibrahim (2015) Strategic Marketing: Creating Competitive Advantage, (3rd edition), Oxford University Press.

Supplementary readings for some topics (see Lecture Programme)
Aaker, David and Damien McLoughlin (2010) Strategic Market Management, John Wiley & Sons.


Material on marketing strategy is contained in Journal of Marketing, European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Management, Journal of Strategic Marketing, and other marketing journals. Country reports are provided by the Economist Intelligence Unit, OECD, the CIA and the World Bank. A variety of market reports are available in The National Library Commercial Section.

Web Resources:
Students will also be expected to regularly consult appropriate online sources for greater appreciation of the issues highlighted in this course. Some of the above journals can be accessed through the 'online library catalogue' plus other professional bodies; for example:

Academy of Marketing, UK
The Chartered Institute of Marketing
European Marketing Academy
American Marketing Association
Academy of Marketing Science, US

Business Week
Financial Times
The Wall Street Journal
Harvard Business Review
Fortune Global 500
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Cognitive Skills

On completion of the course participants will be expected to:

1. Critically evaluate key marketing strategy concepts; theory and practice.
2. Formulate and implement a marketing strategy based on a systematic strategic analysis
3. Demonstrate a sound understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of each strategic marketing decisions and operational issues associated with them.
4. Critically evaluate a firm's marketing mix decisions and marketing strategy performance.
5. The course assignment also gives participants the opportunity of applying key strategic marketing tools, and recommending appropriate future marketing strategies and activities.

Transferable Skills

On completion of the course participants will be expected to:

1.Be able to analyse marketing strategy cases and provide appropriate suggestions to the challenges of operating in various segments of a market.
2. Be able to apply strategic tools/frameworks to real-world marketing situations and recommend appropriate course of actions to given organisations.
3. Be able to undertake a strategic marketing analysis.
4. Be able to communicate your analysis effectively to others class mates in small groups or to the whole class.
5. Be able to demonstrate your understanding of specific marketing strategy concepts under examination conditions, by drawing upon relevant reading and examples.
Additional Class Delivery Information 1 lecture per week
Course organiserDr Essam Ibrahim
Tel: (0131 6)50 8496
Course secretaryMiss Carry Arnold
Tel: (0131 6)50 3826
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