One of my favorite classes this semester is Social Media & Digital Marketing Strategy, which is offered during the spring semester for M.S. in Commerce students in the Marketing & Management track. This course provides the opportunity for students to understand how digital channels such as social media and search engines have fundamentally changed the ways companies market their products and brands.
Coming into the class, I had a lot of experience using social media from the consumer side of platforms, but was unfamiliar with all of the ways digital channels can be used to enhance marketing value. I hadn’t discerned the complexities at play when it comes to targeted marketing decisions that companies make on their digital channels. When these decisions are executed based on data, they can be extremely effective in order to leverage consumers’ online interactions for the benefit of the company.
The course is taught by Professor of Commerce Nicole Montgomery, an engaging communicator who uses her vast experience in the field of marketing to teach us the latest and greatest ways that companies are using digital marketing channels to execute their marketing plans and reach goals. Her research and expertise in consumer information also help us understand the way that consumers interact and process brand material based on the different channels and methods with which they are communicated.
One of the coolest parts of the course so far has been a group project in which we got to develop a social media marketing plan for a clothing brand. We were able to provide data-driven strategic recommendations to identify value-creating opportunities for the company. This was a great way to get experience doing a project that is in line with what we could potentially be doing in the field in a few months.
One of my biggest takeaways from the project was the complex ways in which marketers measure and analyze the different steps in the marketing funnel: awareness, consideration, and conversion. I have not only been able to grasp the importance of each of these steps, but have also learned how to assess and measure them.
Whether you want to go into a career in marketing or not, this course is an excellent opportunity to learn about what goes into a digital marketing strategy and a chance to analyze data from a real organization. I highly recommend future students take this course and see how it could add to their marketing skill set.