Online MBA – Marketing Information Session with Dr. Muehling, Chair of the WSU Carson College of Business’ Department of Marketing and International Business

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Transcript

Jason Techeira:
Hi good day. Thank you for watching our marketing specialization spotlight webinar today. The purpose of this webinar is to hopefully give you a bit more insight to the marketing concentration of our MBA program compared to other programs and schools in the market.With us today we do have myself, Jason Techeira, I am a graduate enrollment advisor here with the Carson College of Business’ online MBA and Executive MBA programs. We do also have the pleasure joining us, Dr. Darrel Muehling, chair of the WSU Carson College of Business’ Department of Marketing and International Business. Thank you for joining us Dr. Muehling. How are you doing today?Darrel Muehling:
I’m doing great. And you?

Jason Techeira:
I’m fine myself. How’s the busy life of a professor?

Darrel Muehling:
Well it’s the start of a new term so it’s as you said, a busy life but enjoyable one. Can’t complain.

Jason Techeira:
Good, glad to hear it. I’m excited to have you here. We do have a few questions. Really just trying to get more insight to some of the classes that you teach in the marketing specialization. If you’d be so kind just to give us really a brief background introduction. Little bit about your academic and research.

Darrel Muehling:
Sure, that’d be my pleasure. I received my PhD from the University of Nebraska, not surprisingly my major was marketing. I have minors in social psychology and mass communications as well which fits into my primary interest which was and has been and continues to be advertising promotion. My primary research has attempted to more fully understand the effects of advertising and promotion on consumer responses. Some of my recent research projects have focused on topics such as brand placements and TV programs. Negative comparative attack advertising. Copycat branding strategies. One of my favorite topics for the last 10 years has been nostalgia. The effects of nostalgia communications on consumers. Not too long ago I did a paper, was published, on mortality salience priming effects and how it impacts texting and driving intentions of drivers, especially young drivers.

Jason Techeira:
Fantastic, thank you for sharing that. I know that little background that I’ve done on you I’ve seen various awards and research projects that you’ve worked on throughout the years in both international business and marketing so definitely a privilege to have you speaking with us today and I’d like to ask you a few more questions in regards to some of the classes that you teach. Would you be able to share us some of the expected learning outcomes for the courses that you teach specifically in the marketing specialization?

Darrel Muehling:
Sure. I’d be happy to. First of all, I teach two classes. One is a five week course, it’s an entry level course. It’s titled Foundations in Marketing and it’s a BA501 entry level type course. Then the other is offered in a seven week format and it’s a marketing elective. It’s focusing on promotion and advertising management. That’s Marketing 577.

With respect to the five week foundations course, basically what I want students to be able to do is understand and use basic marketing terminology and concepts. Be able to understand market planning including the ability to identify and develop the basic elements of a marketing plan. Then probably most important and basic of all principles of marketing courses is be able to apply marketing concepts such as segmentation, target marketing and positioning as well to understand the role of product, pricing, distribution and promotion decisions in successfully implementing a marketing strategy. This course, the foundations course, not surprisingly is the foundation for other courses. Not just marketing courses but I think other courses in the OMBA program.

With respect to the elective course, the promotion management course, I guess first and foremost I just want students to be able to appreciate the dynamic and business like nature of the world of promotion which is ever changing as one would expect. I also want students to be able to understand the factors that influence consumers’ responses to promotional strategies and I like to have them incorporate some social psychological and marketing theoretical perspectives that I’m sharing with them. Finally it’s just pretty much the listing of topics that are part of the promotional plan that I would like to be able to make strategic judgements including judgements about promotional budgeting, objective setting, creative recommendations, media recommendations and last but certainly not least, evaluation and research of expected outcomes.

That was a mouthful, I know.

Jason Techeira:
Do you happen to utilize any of your own research material and publications in your courses?

Darrel Muehling:
Yes I do. In fact, I just made reference to one of my favorite topics as nostalgia. But it depends upon what students are interested in during sessions or during the discussion forums. Sometimes we’ll go off on tangents that may be not something that’s related to the vast majority of my research but still something that I can share if not anecdotally, at least make a reference to an article that I’ve published recently that might be germane to the questions they’re asking.

Jason Techeira:
Fantastic. Perfect. Absolutely helps in a class when you have a professor that can speak firsthand and knows that material.

Darrel Muehling:
What I was going to say, sorry for the interruption Jason but, I’m an academic and so I do take an academic perspective even though I’ve had some business experience and try to keep up with the practical side of promotion and marketing. But I think one of the advantages maybe I’m biased here, is that faculty members are able to bring something that maybe business managers that would be teaching the course are less likely to do and that’s just this notion the theoretical perspective. We get a healthy dose of theory when we’re in our PhD programs and then as part of our career after we graduate with the PhD. So things that might seem rather basic kinds of questions, we can add an entirely light on that and hopefully help students be able to apply things that might seem a little bit more theoretical and over the top into concepts and ideas and phenomenon that they would be facing in the world of marketing or promotion on a daily basis.

Jason Techeira:
Fantastic. Absolutely very unique dynamic to those classes and speaking of unique features, would you be able to tell us about some of the unique features inherent in your courses?

Darrel Muehling:
Sure. I guess I would say that I believe that one of the most enjoyable elements of my classes are the weekly live sessions that we conduct. Here we focus on subset of timely topics relevant to the week’s assignments. But it also gives us an opportunity to drill down and discuss in greater detail some marketing or promotion concepts that students find both interesting and relevant. I know that students also enjoy the Q and A session part of these live sessions where they can pick my brain, whatever there is of it on a host of topics of interest to them. My greatest pleasure though is when student experience an aha moment. This is either done during these live sessions or maybe in a chatroom or in an email or even sometimes it appears in written comments on course evaluations where students will say they’ve gained an important insight on a marketing or promotional concept or practice.

The feedback I receive from students suggest that they enjoy the mix of academic, the theoretical and the practical perspectives that I bring to my classes and these perspectives are applied a variety of elements of the course curriculum including written assignments, class discussion boards, exams and simulation exercises. I guess finally many of the students tell me that they’re able to quickly apply the concepts they’re learning in my classes to their current job situations. I might also say that they enjoy the humor and levity that I tend to inject into my interactions with them. Not everything in my class is serious. I like to take the lighter side even when we’re talking about serious concepts.

Jason Techeira:
Fantastic. Yes, many jokes shared with Professor Muehling I have had myself.

Darrel Muehling:
I’m keeping it pretty serious here today though Jason. Trying to have proper decorum.

Jason Techeira:
Well thank you, thank you very much. And final thoughts I would love to hear your input on is what overall advice do you have for students? Whether they’re looking to pursue your courses or the program in general, any advice that you could share?

Darrel Muehling:
Sure. Maybe this is the obvious but my advice to them would be don’t wait. I think that if they enroll in the WSU Online MBA program it would be one of the best decisions they’d ever make. I’ve seen this from students either with immediate or significant long term benefits. There’s a lot of value added when students complete the online program at the Carson College of Business. And also, we’re a family. The Carson College of Business is a family and as a result of getting an online MBA degree from our college, you’ll become part of the Cougar Nation and our social network. My advice simply is don’t wait, join up. Let’s get you in our classes and continue to broaden your horizons.

Jason Techeira:
Very, very good advice and thank you for your input. Again, one last thing that I would just like to say is thank you everyone who watches this webinar and thank you very much Dr. Muehling for taking the time out of your day. I know very busy with the start of classes and so I do appreciate you sharing your time today to give us a little bit more insight to the program, to your courses and I’ll make sure that everyone that is interested has this information and knows who to reach out to for more advice.

Darrel Muehling:
Very good. Go Cougs as we often say.

Jason Techeira:
Go Cougs. Thank you.
[End of Audio]