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Marketing Major

What You’ll Learn

Learn the foundations of marketing—product, place, price, promotion—and how these concepts impact business strategy and execution in different industries and traditional and digital contexts. Understand the importance of relationships with customers and channel partners.

Topics, skills, and concepts

  • Marketing fundamentals, segmentation, targeting, positioning, strategy, brand management
  • Consumer behavior, marketing research, analytics, digital marketing, social media
  • New product innovation, global business, supply chain management/distribution, communications, sports marketing, sales, management, pricing, retailing

best undergraduate marketing program
U.S. News & World Report, 2023-2024

Prepare for Your Marketing Career

average starting salary

Key employers

Kohl's LogoOvative Group logoTarget logo
Milwaukee Electric Tool logoProcter and Gamble logoKraft-Heinz logo

Knowledge and abilities

  • Use of digital tools, data analysis, ability to formulate marketing strategies related to price, product, promotion, and distribution
  • Analytical thinking, creativity, communication

Common job titles

  • Market Research Analyst
  • Marketing Specialist / Coordinator / Associate
  • Marketing & Public Relations Specialist
  • Brand Manager
  • Product Manager
  • Account Executive
  • Business Development Associate

Common Career Paths

These data-driven marketers uncover and interpret insights to drive strategy and generate customer-centic action. Using their analytical skills, statistical knowledge, and business acumen they identify patterns, trends, and correlations in datasets, consumer research, and competitor analysis. They inform business decisions and develop strategic growth plans through the identification of consumer preferences, opportunities for growth, and areas of concern. As trusted advisors, they use story-telling and data visualization tools to explain findings to stakeholders, such as senior management and marketing partners. These researchers are responsible for not just the collation and analysis of findings, but also support the changes and campaigns they inspire. They track performance against KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) to hold organizations accountable. These Analytics and Insights Professionals may also use and build predictive models to forecast future trends, customer behavior or business outcomes to guide proactive decision-making.

Content strategists bring marketing strategies to life in cohesive, compelling stories, images, campaigns, and promotions. They focus on Promotion of ‘The 4 Ps’. As media and platform experts, they develop integrated plans of digital and traditional marketing tactics to deliver specific marketing objectives such as creating awareness, driving repeat purchases or generating new leads. They determine the most effective combination of tactics – social posts, paid ads, influencer partnerships, SEO content. etc., on the appropriate channels – TikTok, Hulu ad, email after purchase. – to reach their target markets at the right time to inspire action.

These strategists use analytic skills to forecast performance, critical thinking to know when to adjust plans, and creativity to experiment and stand-out in the latest digital trends. These marketers typically start off working on a particular platform or channel such as social media or web SEO content. They may work with internal or external marketing teams of copywriters, graphic designers, and media planners to execute according to the Content Strategists’ parameters and within the brand and product guidelines.

Marketing managers are self-motivated leaders who set strategy and lead cross-functional teams to deliver the business’ goals. These marketers have the widest breadth of marketing and business understanding and rely on internal and external marketing partners to be experts in specific marketing areas such as digital marketing, social media, data analytics, consumer insights, content development, and media planning. They typically own the P&L (Profit & Loss statement) and are accountable for budgeting and meeting financial targets.

Within marketing management, roles and job titles vary from company to company. Positions may be combined into a single position, be very distinct, or have responsibilities shared or split differently. Recent BBA grads are usually hired in as Marketing Assistants or Assistant Marketing Managers. Common types of marketing management positions are:

  • Brand Management: Brand Managers create and preserve the Brand’s promise – its value or experience customers expect to receive every time they interact with the brand. They own and enforce the look, feel, voice, and personality of the brand through its products, messaging and people. Brand managers also define the brand’s unique point(s) of difference and ensure that the brand’s differentiated value is communicated in all consumer communications. With a specialized team or agency, they create and activate an Integrated Marketing Communication plan (IMC) of advertising, social media, promotions, and events across digital and traditional marketing platforms to support and promote the brand and drive profitable growth.
  • Product Management/Product Marketing: Product Marketers manage a portfolio of products or services through the product lifecycle: from fuzzy front-end research through development to launch and finally discontinuation. They own and develop the Product of ‘The 4Ps’ determining and prioritizing the features and benefits and benchmarking vs.competitors. Product Managers develop both new-to-the world products as well as modify existing products, based on changing consumer preferences, trends, and market demand. They lead cross-functional teams (Designers, Engineers, Finance, Sourcing, etc.) through a Stage-Gate process ensuring products/services meet target consumer/customer needs and sales and profit goals.
  • Sports Marketing: Sport marketers are a type of Brand or Product Manager – their product just happens to be a team, franchise, league, athlete or related product or services. Their target markets range from fans to media outlets to other brands. These marketers combine their communication, strategic, and negotiation skills with their deep understanding of sports to develop partnerships, sponsorships, promotions, and events to drive engagement, build brand connections and support a positive public image.
  • Tech Product Marketing: Tech Product Marketers focus on technology-based products and services in industries such as Software as a Service (SaaS), Healthcare Technology, and Financial Technology (FinTech). These specialized Product Marketers bridge the gap between the development team and the target market. Through comprehensive market analysis they find attractive entry points, market trends, and competitors’ insights, while building empathy for their consumers and identifying their technical needs. These roles require a blend of technical knowledge, marketing expertise, and the ability to simplify complex information with a deep understanding of customer needs and preferences.


Sales and business development focus on growing revenue and expanding their company’s customer base. Through relationship-building, they identify, prospect, and service target markets who benefit from their company’s products and services. Business development professionals focus on longer-term relationships and discover growth areas, such as new business opportunities, partnerships, and market expansion. They play a key role in strategic planning with senior management, driving the growth and profitability of the organization.
Sales professionals focus on short-term sales goals and driving immediate revenue for the organization. The sales process starts with engaging with potential clients and understanding their needs. Based on these needs, sales people present features and benefits of appropriate offerings, answer questions, negotiate terms, and ultimately close deals. Ongoing they develop strategies and tactics to maximize revenue, nourish these relationships with excellent customer service, and share customer insights with internal cross-functional teams to inspire new products and services. Depending on company size, the Sales Team may be one person or many handling different parts of the sales process, such as:

  • Sales Representative: Front-line professionals who are the direct point of contact with prospect customers and play a key role in building new relationships, understanding needs, and closing deals. Sales representatives often work in specific territories or industries and are driven by meeting or exceeding sales targets.
  • Account Executive/Account Manager: Manage existing client’s relationships ensuring they have a positive experience. As a go-between, they represent the client with internal teams, manage administration details, and effectively communicate information from internal cross-functional teams.
  • Sales Analyst: Helps understand the effectiveness of sales strategies through analyzing sales data, performance metrics, and market trends. Prepares dashboards and presentations to communicate performance to stakeholders, such as senior leadership and sales managers.

Go Beyond the Classroom

Peter Feigin, Milwaukee Bucks President, speaking to a class at Grainger Hall

Students create personal marketing plans, conduct SWOT analyses, develop marketing strategies, learn coding and how to analyze big data, learn the application of qualitative and quantitative marketing research methods, and participate in research studies.

Students travel with a short-term study abroad, participate in simulations, and perform logistics optimizations and network design activities.

Meet the Marketing Team

Career coach

Use Starfish to make an appointment with your career coach.

Debbie Whitman

Debbie Whitman

Career coach
Kristen Fellhoelter

Kristen Fellhoelter

Career Coach

Pathway consultant

Kelly Newbold Boudreau

Kelly Newbold Boudreau

Marketing Program Director