Back to School: A Look at the Nation's Top Marketing Program
A Quantitative Approach
At the heart of Kellogg’s marketing prowess is its cutting-edge curriculum. Dr. Lee notes, “As a school, we’re constantly adapting to the ever-changing format of marketing, continuously updating the Kellogg curriculum to integrate global markets, general management, and data science into our courses.”
The school offers several flavors of MBA, a doctoral program and executive education to keep business professionals sharp throughout their careers. Students can find courses common among most marketing programs, including Marketing Management, Marketing Strategy and Behavioral Marketing.
But the curriculum also offers many quantitative courses, which might seem foreign to marketers. Course titles such as Consumer Insight Tools, Digital Marketing Analytics and Bayesian Modeling have made their way into the marketing specialty. It’s important to note, these are not merely elective courses under information technology or statistics, but are core to marketing itself. This shift emphasizes the need for modern marketers to apply quantitative methods, while remaining knowledgeable in the more traditional, qualitative aspects of the discipline.
Publish or Perish
One additional area in which Northwestern excels is its many contributions to academic literature. Kellogg’s website lists dozens of books penned by current and former marketing professors. Kellogg also publishes Kellogg Insight, which is an online resource for marketers. The August edition delved into the implications of increasing disposable income in Africa, whether companies should brag about being innovative, and how to utilize power dynamics to be more persuasive.
The driving force behind the school’s PhD program is the desire to establish thought leadership through scholarly publication in peer-reviewed journals and other resources. The same might be said for any PhD program. However, a 2009 study showed, while Columbia and Duke professors have collectively published more articles, Kellogg’s Alexander Chernev was the single-most prolific marketing scholar from 1982-2006.
The Proof Is in the Pudding
The one-year MBA program at Northwestern is not cheap. According to the university’s website, it will cost incoming 2016 students $128,194. But with most graduates going on to earn a median income of $140,000, that investment seems worthwhile. More important than simply looking at cash in vs. cash out is the value of the education one attains through a program like Kellogg.
Of course, acceptance at any of the top 10 schools would set students up for success; it’s difficult to say how much better one school is than the others. Such are the perils of ordinality. Nevertheless, with a history rooted in marketing innovation and cross-disciplinary excellence, a highly-regarded faculty, and a forward-thinking and challenging curriculum, it’s no wonder Kellogg’s marketing program is ranked number one. Focusing on the ultimate goal of any business school, Dr. Lee asserts, “The end results exemplify our success, with Kellogg graduates leading organizations that create new markets and produce sustainable growth.”