Kirloskar Institute of Advanced Management Studies

Kirloskar Institute of Advanced Management Studies

Marketing Unplugged! – Prof. Anand Narasimha

Posted on: March 30, 2016

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Marketing Unplugged!

A guide to career paths in ‘Marketing’ for Business School students

Prof. Anand Narasimha

Anand Narasimha is a Professor of Marketing & Strategy, with close to 3 decades of global experience spanning Marketing, Advertising, Consulting and Academics, he is currently Faculty at KIAMS.You can connect with him on 

Marketing is among the most sought after ‘specializations’ for students in Business Schools. While most students have clarity on this, very few are clear on ‘what specific area of Marketing’ they wish to focus on for building their careers.

Marketing being a diverse field with a large scope, it helps if students are able to define a more specific area of Marketing, from the perspective of tailoring their learning and career options in a targeted manner.

In fact, some premier B-Schools in the U.S. have moved out of offering ‘generic’ Specializations like Marketing, Finance, HR and Operations and are focusing  instead on offering ‘Concentrations’– more sharply defined areas of study, within the broad functional areas of Management.

In order to understand the specific opportunities for learning and career development in the Marketing area, I have put together a table which can serve as a ready reckoner for B-School students.

But first, let us understand what Marketing is all about, at its simplest. Marketing in any form requires 2 basic things:

1. Understanding and managing ‘perceptions’ in the consumers’ minds.

2. Using these perceptions to drive‘action’ to purchase in the market.

This ‘mind to market’ approach is the basis of Marketing, no matter which specific ‘concentration’ one may choose.

The Ready Reckoner for ‘Marketing Career Paths’

Concentration Opportunity Areas Learning Focus
Consumer Marketing: Mass marketing to
FMCG (fast moving
consumer goods)/CPG
(consumer packaged goods),
Consumer Durables,
Consumer Services
Sales & Distribution,
Brand Management,
Marketing Communication,
Product Development,
Pricing Strategies,
Consumer Behaviour,
Marketing & Sales
Analytics, Digital Marketing
 Business to Business (B2B) Marketing: Targeted marketing to enterprise customers Technology products &services, Industrial products, ITES, Infrastructure Development, Energy, Defence, Core Sectors Selling Skills, Negotiation Skills, Product Development, Pricing Strategies, CRM/Customer Solutions Marketing, Customer Research, E-Business and E-Commerce
 Marketing Communication (MARCOM): Service providers to companies, for outsourcing their MARCOM activities Advertising Agencies, Media Agencies, Digital Agencies, Event Management Agencies, Activation & Promotion Agencies, Design Agencies, PR Agencies Marketing Communication, Brand Management, Digital Marketing, Consumer Insights, Consumer Culture, Media Management, Media Planning & Buying, Experiential Marketing
 Retailing & E-Tailing: Brick & Mortar Retail and Online Shopping Large Format Multi-Brand Retailers, Exclusive Brand Outlets, Online Shopping Companies, Retail Management, In-store & Shopper Marketing, Category Management, Merchandising, Supply Chain, Digital Marketing, CRM, E-Commerce
 Marketing Research & Analytics: Quantitative &Qualitative analysis of for Marketing decision making Marketing Research Agencies, Marketing/Business Analytics Companies, Small/Medium Consulting Companies, Business Intelligence in companies across sectors Consumer Behaviour, Marketing Research, Consumer Insights, Business Analytics, Customer & Market Analytics, Web & Social Media Analytics, CRM, Strategic Marketing
 Luxury Brand Marketing:Marketing of exclusive, niche brands to high                 net-worth customers Ultra-premium categories like, watches, designer apparel & accessories, vacations, cars & bikes, real-estate, hotels& resorts and other lifestyle products/services Understanding ‘Luxury Business’ with respect to: Brand Management, Marketing Communication, Retailing, Experiential Marketing, Relationship Marketing

Note: The details given in the table are indicative and not exhaustive

All the ‘concentrations’ discussed here, represent lucrative career opportunities and range from broad to niche areas.  In order to make the right choice, it is important that you find out more about the areas that interest you, by speaking to your faculty, alumni and industry professionals.

While each ‘concentration’ requires focus on specific learning areas in Marketing, there are some common traits that any marketing professional worth her/his salt needs to possess:

  • A passion for observing, understanding and connecting with consumers (people)
  • Challenging conventional wisdom by thinking imaginatively
  • Telling powerful and insightful stories about your products and services
  • Enjoying working with people and being an inspiring team player
  • An attitude of ‘nothing is impossible’

The last tip I can give you is, that after analysing all the rational criteria for guiding your decision making using your ‘head’, make the final choice with your ‘heart’. After all, as one of the world’s top behavioural psychologist said, “Reasons lead to conclusions. Emotion leads to action.”

Categories: Faculty