Grad-school revised

януари 7, 2010

I am a graduate student, I am completing my MSc in International marketing in one of the top 25 (ranked 22) schools in the WORLD! What do you read, when you see that? Kick ass preparation, ready for life, give me a project and I will kick ass! Ummm… sorry, not really.

So far the actual preparation for real life management has been, let’s say… in the words of a dear friend of mine: „meh“.

I was studying for my market structure and competition exam today and I was reading about the broadening of marketing and how the theory is shifting from a product dominant logic to the service dominant model. There was it- co-creation of value, so important in… 2 slides… and then a whole semester of dry boring theory that contributed nothing to my real world preparation for bad-ass-future-pr-ness. I think there is something wrong in education today… I am learning more from the blogs that I am reading, and the YouTube videos that I am watching than from my teachers.

For a whole semester we have not even mentioned concepts like – social media, the power of buzz, YouTube,  even the internet… How come this is a world level marketing program if we are talking about articles from the 70’s and 90’s and wasting classes talking about the Structure-Conduct-Performance model, to only have our lecturer tell us after the whole class that this model is not used anymore, and it is outdated?! really!?!?

Granted we have to know theory. No doubt about it. I like my theory, I like perspectives and different lenses through which one particular case can be viewed and examined, but seriously… we need something more. Marketing changes so quickly, there are so many innovations, and so many ideas up in the air at all times that we need to be able to find them, to appreciate them, to create them.

I was looking at the T-mobile campaign that was created in the past year: T-mobile: Life is for sharing


It is all about the buzz, the co-creation of experience, co-creation of value, people participating, having fun.  They are not consumers in the rational marketing sense; they are partners, participants… allies in producing something extraordinary. Marketing is not about selling a product anymore, it is not even about creating a service, it is about awareness, visibility, and mainly ability to create, pursue, and carry out ideas that are catchy, and likable. That is what social marketing is about. Putting the” social” part in, is so important, and there are so many great resources… it is sad and a pity that we are not even covering the basic idea of buzz, consumer relationship or reviewing groundbreaking ideas and campaigns as part of our curriculum.

Evian babies


Because as seen in the Evian ad, it is not about the water, it is about the fun, the catchiness, the sole idea that this ad was seen by several million people, and sent across the globe several times. There is a way to learn to do that, to think like that, to be outside the box as much as possible, but definitely we are not getting it here and now. And we should.

I stumbled upon the OraBrush ads on YouTube. http://www.orabrush.com/store/index.html It is genius. It covers all bases, it is interactive, innovative, funny, educational… I will order the product myself…. But hey, they give it for free if you visit the website and join the Facebook group and invite your friends to view the fan-page. Genius! They even have iPhone apps, they place their ads on YouTube, they use humor, have consumer feedback… yes, I know, I know… we can’t learn how to do that in school, there is no scheme to how to create a creative campaign that is groundbreaking… they can’t teach genius into me… but honestly I think programmes, especially graduate programmes in marketing should put bigger emphasis on what is going on right here, right now. It is not that hard.

Schools should nurture creativity, and enable people to create ads with LED sheep, and not cable-tv infomercials! No one needs the next snuggie afterall.


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  • Reply Jeff Harmon януари 8, 2010 at 6:23 am

    This is an excellent blog post. I have been lucky enough to be on the team that is doing the OraBrush campaign. I graduated from what is considered a top 100 business school worldwide as well (the Marriott School of Management at BYU), after I graduated in April of 09, I realized that everything I am doing at OraBrush, I learned while I wasn’t paying attention in school 😉 During my years at school I was constantly reading blogs and working on side projects, that is where my real business education came from. But I have to give my school credit for bringing me loads of excellent connections.

  • Reply petpand януари 8, 2010 at 11:59 am

    Thanks for the comment.
    First I wanna say- amazing job for the OraBrush campaign! My OraBrush has not arrived yet (the UK is far away i guess), so i can’t talk about the product (although it looks pretty cool), but the marketing and all the details, and use of all possible platforms to promote is great! props!
    About reading blogs and side projects- I feel like I am learning so much more, but in the same time I feel guilty spending time on the internet, because I need to re-focus my time and efforts back to the theory of the books, and the discussions in the article we were forced to read.
    Final point- I wish educational programs could be changed, and shift to promote useful, practical advice on how things work, just because I don’t wanna pay for a piece of paper that pronounces me a MSc, I want a program that will make me feel like one.

    PS: Do you wanna come and be a guest speaker and share insight from the campaign? 😀

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