Full-Time MBA

Virtual Events
Diversity Events

Live Chat with Full-Time MBA Program Admissions

Art Middlebrooks, Professor of Marketing and Executive Director of the Kilts Center for Marketing, along with current students and Admissions Staff, will chat with prospective students about the Marketing concentration at Chicago Booth, and answer your admissions-related questions.

September 30, 2009 —11:00 AM-12:00 PM CST

Moderator: Hello everyone and welcome to our Live Chat about Marketing at Chicago Booth! We'll start the chat promptly at 11:00am but feel free to submit questions now.

Art: I'm Executive Director of the Kilts Center for Marketing at Chicago Booth. I teach 2 Marketing Classes: Developing New Products, and Marketing of Services. I also received my MBA from Chicago Booth in 1988 (in Marketing & Finance).

Art: My work experience has primarily been in Management Consulting, specializing in New Product Development for service companies.

Art: Look forward to your questions!

Robert: Hi everyone! My name is Roberto Michelassi, and I am a second-year student at Chicago Booth studying Marketing and General Management. This past summer, I interned at Abbott Laboratories--a pharmaceutical company based outside Chicago. At school, I am a member of the Marketing group and the Healthcare group. Also, my favorite color is yellow.

Bradley: Good morning from Chicago! My name is Bradley Sniderman and I am a second-year student concentrating in Marketing, Strategy, and Entrepreneurship. I spent the summer at a startup company called Tula Foods (founded by a Booth alum), which markets a new brand of yogurt. I am a Co-Chair of the student Marketing Group and I am leading a first-year team as part of the Business Solutions Group.

Andrea: Hi everyone! I'm Andrea Schmoyer, Associate Director of Admissions. Looking forward to a great chat today!

Susan: Welcome, thanks for joining us today! My name is Susan Thuresson and I am currently a second-year student at Booth. Prior to business school I spent four years working in engineering/supply chain operations at Abbott Laboratories, and this past summer I worked in brand management at Kraft Foods. I am currently a co-chair of the Marketing Group and a member of the Management Consulting and Corporate Management/Strategy groups as well.

Kurt: Good morning everyone thanks for joining us for this special chat. Besides wearing the Director of Admissions hat I am also a product of the Booth Marketing concentration so please feel free to ask whatevever question you like and I will do my best to answer them.

Allie: Do companies recruit specifically for consultants in nonprofit sector from Booth?

Art: Not that I'm aware of. That said, most of the major consulting firms (e.g. McKinsey, Bain, BCG, Booz-Allen) have practice areas focused on non-profit and government sectors.

Megh: Does Chicago Booth's Marketing curriculum cover 'Customer Relationship Management' (CRM)? I mean CRM concepts not the IT tools. Does CRM mean predominantly IT or is it a business practice?

Susan: Our curriculum does touch on CRM through 2 courses I can think of - one is Data Driven Marketing and the other is Marketing Channels. I believe CRM is more of a business practice rather than an IT tool.

Chun: I notice that Chicago Booth provides many courses on quantitative marketing research. The basis for quantitative marketing is that the marketing data, especially economic data and demographic data, is available. But I think this method doesn't apply to developing countries, such as China. I used to undertake a project with the National Burea of Statistics of China, and I know that very detailed economic and demographic data is absent. Even though the burea has some detailed data, it will never be accessible to public considering so-called secrecy. My question is: how the graduates of Chicago Booth apply the quantitative marketing analysis methods to developing countries, especially for countries which have immense marketing opportunities but are lack of data.

Art: Third-party marketing databases are being formed in developing countries (e.g. AC Nielsen). The quantitative marketing methods we teach also apply to collection of primary data (e.g. customer surveys, market research), and the use of company-specific databases (e.g. in our data-driven marketing class) for things like direct mail response, internet advertising measurement, etc.

Booth2012able: Hi I am international applicant. After my MBA I hope to return to India and introduce some new products I am working on into the Indian retail market. What facilities at Kilt can students like me leverage and how?

Robert: Hi. I think you are making a great choice in considering Chicago Booth. There are two resources in particular that I would recommend to you here. First, Professor Middlebrooks (who is on this chat) teaches a very helpful class called New Products and Services which teaches students the basics involved in developing and implementing new products. I took the class myself and would now feel comfortable working on a team developing a new product.

Robert: Second, Chicago Booth offers classes called "Management Labs" which allow students the opportunity to work on real-work projects. There is a subset of these Management Labs called "New Products Labs" which specifically deal with new product development. I hope this was helpful!

Meredith: What types of jobs/positions do Booth graduates accept after graduating with a concentration in Marketing?

Bradley: Hi Meredith - Students from Booth accept a range of jobs after graduating with a concentration in Marketing. There are opportunities in brand management, pharmaceuticals, consulting, general management, and entrepreneurship. The marketing curriculum teaches broad strategic tools that are applicable to quite a range of job opportunities.

TJH: Hi. I was just curious if you could speak to the numbers of students who pursue the marketing concentration (among others), and how many students are then in most classrooms

Susan: About 20% of students pursue the marketing concentration at Booth. For the intro marketing classes there are usually about 60 students/class, and the classes tend to get smaller as the topic becomes more specialized.

anirudh: How is the Marketing Course Structured at Chicago Booth and how are the placements linked to marketing graduates

Bradley: Anirudh - The marketing concentration at Booth begins with the core Marketing Strategy course (37000), which teaches the fundamentals of marketing that other classes build on. From there, students take advantage of Booth's flexible curriculum to suit their interests and to help them prepare for their internships/jobs.

Alex: Can you explain more about the criteria for one of the Marketing Fellowships? Can you only apply after admission to Booth?

Andrea: Hi Alex. There is actually not a separate application process for our scholarships and fellowships. The Marketing Fellowship is awarded to students pursuing a career in Marketing and who plan to concentrate in Marketing Management. After we have made admissions decisions, we identify applicants that would be good candidates for the fellowship and they are then contacted by the committee making final decisions. We use the information that already exists in the application and those that are awarded the fellowship are typically the top Marketing candidates in our pool.

anirudh: I am giving my GMAT on the 20th of October. Would it be possible to apply in R1? As in I submit all my other details and submit the GMAT Score at a later date?

Andrea: Hi anirudh. We do need all materials, including a GMAT score, by 5:00 p.m. CST on October 14th to be considered for Round 1. If you already have a score you may apply with the existing score and we will consider the updated score once you have taken it (keep in mind that your application will already be under review with the existing score, if this is the case). However, if this is the first time you have taken the GMAT, I would recommend you wait to apply until Round 2.

Amit: Hi, Booth has been generally renowned for its finace programs. The agressive push towards marketing seems a recent phenomenon. Any specific reason for the same?

Art: Actually, the school has been very strong in Marketing for some time. I would say that external perceptions are just catching up with the internal strengths of Chicago Booth in Marketing. For example, we have rated in the Top 10 in Marketing in U.S. News & World Report for the past 5 years, and this most recent year ranked #7 in Marketing in that publication.

Chun: Is there any difference in admission rates between Round one and Round Two? If I submit my application package in Round Two, is it possible that I will be admitted in less chance?

Kurt: The admission rate between first and second round is negligible. The common rule of thumb is to apply when your application is at its best. If you need more time, we suggest that you take it because you are better served by putting forth your best effort than trying to gamble on any perceived advantages of round.

molly: Questions about concentration. If I do not opt for a marketing concentration, am I allowed to choose a marketing course that i'm interested in?

Art: Definitely - you can take any marketing course you wish, as long as you have satisfied the prerequisites. You never have to "declare" a marketing concentration, you'll receive the concentration when you take a certain number of marketing classes.

Cristina: Good Morning. I'm Cristina Mendenhall from LA. I know Booth has a flexible cirriculum, could you talk about the courses you have selected to take for an emphasis in marketing?

Susan: I highly recommend Marketing Strategy as a great intro class to anyone that is interested in marketing. Some other classes I chose to take during my first year were Intro to New Products/Services and Data Driven Marketing. I found that these classes prepared me very well for an internship in brand management.

Russ: First off, thank you for taking time out of your day to join us. If I have a marketing concentration does this mean I have to go into marketing after I graduate? Also, will this hurt my chances if I choose a different career path? For example, consulting? Thanks.

Robert: Hi Russ. Not at all! Many Chicago Booth students who go into consulting, venture capital, or even finance get a concentration in marketing. I believe that, as long as you have a good understanding of the key areas of that industry (finance, accounting, etc.), a concentration in marketing can set you apart in the minds of recruiters. For consulting in particular, I believe marketing would be especially valued in case you get staffed on a retail or food industry project.

Apple: A few days ago when I chatted with a friend who is working in Marketing Department of P&G, he said it's meaningless to learn Marketing in business schools.I'm quite confused because Marketing is my expected specialization in business school.

Bradley: Apple - I certainly do not think that Marketing is meaningless to learn in business school! At Booth, the professors do an excellent job of demonstrating how and why the concepts that are taught in the classroom are applicable in the "real world." For example, in Data-Driven Marketing (37103), the professor highlights numerous examples of how brand managers and marketing strategists to be can use the tools from his class to make an impact during their internships.

BrianMHull: Hi Professor Middlebrooks. This is Brian Hull, we spoke last week regarding innovation consulting. Could you talk a little bit about some of the opportunities the Nielsen data sets will provide for students? Thank you again for your time and input.

Art: Hi Brian,

Art: Thanks for your question -- great to speak with you last week. As you state, we recently signed an agreement with A.C. Nielsen to house at Chicago Booth multiple years of two of their major data sets: their Homescan (household panel date) and Retail Store point-of-sale data. This data will be housed at Chicago Booth and made available for academic use to other U.S.-based universities as well.

Art: Our Data-Driven Marketing class will likely be the first to utilize this data in class. This class already uses some similar datasets, though not as extensive as the Nielsen data.

molly: questions for Bradley. Do you mean that you have chosen three concentration at the same time? How do you manage that?

Bradley: Hi Molly - It is certainly possible to concentrate in three different areas at Chicago Booth. Due to the flexible curriculum, students are free to choose the classes that interest them the most and that will help to prepare them for their internships or full-time jobs. Many of my classmates have two or three concentrations, and some even have four!

G-162316524: Hi, my name is Camila Salamanca. I have a question regarding the marketing management lab. As I have seen on the web page projects have "expanded beyond the US". How do these projects work? Do students travel for some weeks for the consultancy?

Art: Hi Camila,

Art: Thanks for joining us, and for your question. You are correct -- the Management Lab course has had international labs in recent years. On these projects, students live in the country during the quarter (~10 weeks), taking this course for 2 credits and typically arranging an independent study for 1 credit.

IndustrialEngineer: Good Morning. I have an engineering background, and have no idea what marketing has to offer. What do you consider is the most important things to be learned with a Marketing concentration? Do people with no experience whatsoever have a chance of excelling in such a concentration?

Robert: Hi IndustrialEngineer. I think the most important concept to be gained from a marketing concentration is the basic idea of differentiating one's product from the competition and using the 4 P's (product, price, place, and promotion) to support that differentiation. With respect to your second question, it is certainly possible for people who have not had marketing experience to excel in a marketing concentration. I believe engineers, with their hard work ethic and intelligence, are particularly able to do this.

Duval: First, my sincere apologies for joining the chat so late (I just saw the email and joined right away). I am Duval Guimaraes, currently in my second year of full time work experience and strongly considering applying for graduate studies starting in the fall of 2010. If still possible, I would like to hear your insights about the joint MBA/MPP program. In particular, I would like to know from you what essential characteristics would a competitive applicant have for the program as well as the overall tendency of graduating students between private and public sector. Kind Regards!

Kurt: Paths for the MBA/MPP degree can vary. Some go into the non-profit space and some into industry. Your options are not limited and in fact having an additional year to complete the joint degree allows many of our students to complete internships in both arenas to better determine what path they want to take when they graduate. In terms of what the programs look for, I would say people who are bright, demonstrate a track record of academic and professional success and an overall passion for learning and contributing to the broader community. Please note that the application review process is separate for MPP and MBA and you do have to apply to both programs. As such I would encourage you to contact the Harris school as well to get their insights on the application process.

RPatap: Regarding the slide presentation as a reapplicant, much of the content I want to convey to admissions this year is the same as I used for last year’s application. I want to stick with most of my messages in my slides because I see them as my most compelling stories but I don’t want to appear lazy in reapplying. The language I have seen on the website suggests to start fresh with all essays and slides. What would be your suggestions to handling this issue?

Andrea: Hi RPatap. Ultimately, the decision is up to you, but as our website suggests, a fresh approach is recommended. Keep in mind that we do have your prior application on file and while a full review is not conducted, we do use that as a reference point. That does not necessarily mean that we're looking for new information entirely - my best advice is to look at what the rest of your application is telling us, think about what is not there, and use that as a starting point for the slides.

anirudh: Chicago is generally known to be more of a Finance school. How does the marketing department cope up with this tag and what are the placements like for marketing graduates?

Art: The external reputation is just catching up with internal reality! We atually ranked #5 in Marketing in Business Week last year, and #7 in U.S. News and World Report. In terms of marketing placements, we are above or the same as all our peer schools except for one (Kellogg is higher). In recent years, 7.5% of our students have taken full-time Marketing jobs. In 2009 the numbers are not yet finalized, but it looks like it will be about 10%.

BrianMHull: Hi Professor Middlebrooks. I heard a bit about the Google Marketing Competition while visiting last Friday, but I would love to hear more about the experiential learning opportunities available to MBA students.

Art: Hi Brian,

Art: There are quite a few experiential learning courses, or "Lab" courses as we call them. Management Lab -- immersive, large projects typically in Marketing or Strategy. These are the types of projects you would tackle if you worked for a large consulting firm (e.g. McKinsey).

Art: Marketing Labs -- 2 courses, Marketing Research & Consumer Behavior, have sponsored marketing projects from companies (large & small). Last year we had ~40 companies sponsor projects (e.g. American Express, Procter & Gamble, Microsoft, Abbott Labs, as well as many entrepreneurial companies). In these classes you learn a core curriculum, and apply it to the company-sponsored project.

Art: Entrepreneurship Labs -- there are several Lab courses offered in this department as well: New Venture Lab, Private Equity Lab, and Social Entrepreneurship Lab.

Art: All this to say that there are ample opportunities to apply the concepts you are learning in class to real-world projects.

Mahe: In one of the Booth information sessions, I heard about a new marketing lab as part of experiential learning. Could you please share more information about this lab?

Art: 2 of our Marketing Classes have, in addition to their core curriculum, sponsored projects from companies. These 2 classes are "Marketing Research" and "Consumer Behavior". We had ~40 sponsor companies last year, and ~200 students take these courses. Students work in teams of 4-5 on each project.

Amount: Are there any opportunities for fellowships while in school.

Andrea: Yes, we have a variety of fellowships available to students. For more information visit our website at http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/admissions/scholarships/.

Richa: Is it preferable to get the second recommendation from someone who is not from the workplace?

Andrea: Hi Richa. That really depends on you. Our guidelines are open in recognition that all applicants are coming from different situations and in some cases, those applicants may have access to great recommendations outside of the workplace. However, for some, the best might come from the workplace. Think about who can speak best to the qualities we are asking them to assess. There is not a preferred approach to this on our end.

Eric: Hi, Thanks for your kind hosting this chat. I have a quesiton that what does Mid-Decision mean?

Andrea: Hi Eric. The mid-decision date is the date by which we will have released all invitations to interview for that round. If you are not invited to interview, then you would have a final decision of deny on that date.

G-129509834: Hello. Thank you for hosting a chat specifically for Marketing! I would like to know more about what companies are recruiting at Booth specifically for Marketing.

Robert: Hello. You are absolutely welcome! About 40 companies come for on-campus recruiting, and over 200 companies post jobs specifically for marketing. In Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG), we have Kraft, Unilever, PepsiCo, Reckitt Benckiser, MillerCoors, and many more. In Healthcare, we have Abbott Laboratories, Eli Lilly, United Healthcare, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, just to name a few.

2010Applicant: Professor Middlebrooks, thanks so much for being here to answer questions. If your budget at the Kilts Center increased significantly next year (hypothetically), what would you spend the extra money on?

Art: Hi,

Art: Thanks for your question. Our main priorities for the Kilts Center are: 1)Students: Fellowships and scholarships for Marketing students; expanding our Marketing Mentors program that pairs up Marketing students with alums working in Marketing. 2) Supporting faculty research: the big project right now is creating a data warehouse for the recently-acquired Nielsen data. We also organize & support a major academic conference each year called the QME (Quantitative Marketing and Economics). 3)Alumni: we have a number of programs, outreach and communications for marketing alumni 4)Curriculum Development: expanding the Marketing Lab courses, working on new programs outside of traditional marketing classes 5)Recruiters: deepening current relationships with Marketing recruiters, and expanding the number of companies that come to Booth for Marketing.

Moderator: We're halfway through the chat and we've had lots of great questions so far. We are eager to continue the dialogue. Continue submitting those questions!

JustinC: One of the major issues I had with undergrad is the large disconnect between theory and reality. How does Booth ensure that students have a good theoretical perspective, but can interpret and apply on the job?

Kurt: Chicago Booth is known for both. In fact we were the first MBA program to introduce lab-based coursework for class credit. Essentially we offer labs every quarter for students to work with companies as consultants on real world problems. We do them in traditional management, issues dealing with branding, operations, strategy; New Venture, working with start-ups; and Private Equity/Venture Capital. Companies who have sponsored labs include JPMorganChase, Kraft, United, Abbott, Citigroup to name a few. In addition to these lab courses we have also introduced the lab concept into various classes. For example our Marketing Research class has a project focus where students work with actual companies on Market Research related topics where they apply the tools of the class to solve the companies issue. This same concept also exists in our Social Entreprenuership class and we are looking to expand it to more.

MIchael: Art, thank you for attending today's session. Booth is known for being a heavily quantitative and analytical program. Do you feel that this corresponds to the marketing curriculum and courses at Booth?

Art: Hi Michael, measurement and accountability for Marketing investments is a big topic in the field of Marketing. Some of our faculties research interests are focused on this, and it gets reflected in the Marketing curriculum. Some of the Marketing courses are more quantitative than others (e.g. Data-Driven Marketing and Pricing Strategy vs. Integrated Brand Communications for example). In all courses we take a disciplined approach.

molly: Hi Art. Can you tell me what the course of Marketing of Services is about? What is special about this course?

Art: Molly, thanks for asking! I teach the first session of this course tonight, and love the topic! 70% of the US economy is services (80% if you count Government as a service). This percentage is similar in most developed and developing countries as well. But services have some unique challenges & opportunities: they are intangible, produced & consumed at the same time, perishable, and have significant quality challenges. The Marketing of Services course addresses the unique approaches marketers can take to be successful in service businesses. It addresses consumer-oriented services as well as Business-to-business & professional services.

MIchael: I'm planning on attending the Marketing Live event at Booth on October 16th. What kind of events are scheduled to help students learn more about the marketing program at Booth?

Andrea: For the Marketing Booth Live, the Marketing Group will be heavily involved so that attendees have the opportunity to interact with plenty of our Marketing students. We will also have a panel of alumni working in the Marketing industry and a mock Marketing course.

nickLondon: Hi there, is it possible to choose subjects such as Law and Psychology in MBA program? If yes can you tell where can I find more info

Kurt: At Chicago Booth we have 6 electives that can be taken in any department or school at the University of Chicago. This would allow you to take Psychology classes, Law, Public Policy whatever might interest you.

boothapp_12: What are some of the projects within the marketing courses that you found to be especially useful for actually putting marketing into practice.

Robert: There are two that come immediately to mind. First, in the class New Products and Services, my group had to take the Listerine brand and design a potential new product that the brand could launch, based on consumer interviews and Conjoint Analysis. We ended up concluding that a multi-functional Listerine would be the best new product, and, as if to validate our hypothesis, Listerine introduced its new Listerine TotalCare with 6 different functions 2 weeks after the class ended. The next project occurred in my data-driven marketing class, in which we used a linear regression model to analyze the ideal price for several different types of food products. This is exactly the analysis that goes on at major CPG companies, and I now feel well equipped to do it. I hope this helps!

2010Applicant: Hi Susan. Reflecting on your summer at Kraft, could you talk about how you think Booth is preparing you for success in a brand management career. What have you learned either in or out of the classroom that has been most useful for you?

Susan: I think that the marketing programs at Booth do a great job of preparing students for a career in brand management. This past spring I took the Data Driven Marketing course at Booth, which is a class that many b-schools do not currently offer. I was able to directly apply many of the concepts I learned in this course to my summer internship project. In general I think Booth does a great job of focusing on both the qualitative and quantitative aspects of marketing/brand management.

Rachel: Hi - this is a question for Bradley. What did you find most useful in pursuing your marketing/entrepreneurship-related interests (clubs, conversations with professors, your internship, etc.)?

Art: Hi Rachel - One of the most important activities that I did to help prepare me for my summer internship was to actively participate in the Marketing Group. The group does a fantastic job of preparing first-year students for the recruiting season and introducing them to the field in general. You mentioned conversations with professors, and that is something else that I took advantage of. The professors at Booth are world-class in their respective fields, and I have found that they are quite willing to chat with you about your career interests.

IndustrialEngineer: I am reapplying to Chicago Booth this year. Regarding my essays, is it a good idea to make references to my previous application (such as goals and work history) and focus only on new events and stories? I dont want to sacrifice space in my essays to describe things written in my previous application. Thank you.

Andrea: While we do have your prior application on file, it is mainly used as a reference point and is not fully reviewed, so that would depend on how you structure your essays. We are concerned with growth and change over last year so it's wise to discuss that, but don't assume that a full read of last years' essays will occur. References are fine, but the new essays should make sense within the context of your new app.

Jere: Hello everyone. Art would you say that your course in Marketing of Services would be helpful for a person that is looking to go into sales and trading at an investment firm?

Art: Jere, Absolutely! A lot of students take this class because they are going into Professional Services industries (e.g. Investment Banking, Consulting, etc.). As your career advances within a professional services firm, you'll find that marketing and sales become more & more important skills.

Sofia: I know that marketing is becoming more popular at Booth. As an aspiring brand manager, can you talk about what advances Booth is making to meet this increased interest? Especially since it is known first and foremost for economics and finance?

Art: Hi Sofia, I'm so glad you asked this question!

Art: We recognize that Chicago Booth’s historical reputational strengths have been in the areas of Finance, Economics and Accounting … as well as in building fundamental analytical and leadership skills. We think these strengths play right into what it takes to be a great Marketer. At Chicago Booth we're focused on equipping our students to be successful marketers who create value in the marketplace … not just who create good marketing and advertising programs. We believe that the education our students receive in Marketing, Leadership and the other disciplines of the school (e.g. Finance, Accounting, Strategy, Economics) uniquely equips students to be successful Marketers and General Managers (e.g. Brand Managers) who can work across the entire organization to drive real value in the marketplace.

Arti: Have any of the panelists who are currently pursuing the marketing concentration made a career change (with no prior formal marketing experence) into this field? How has the transition been? How do you feel Booth has prepared you to adequately succeed in the marketing field post-graduation?

Susan: Hi Arti! I am a career changer myself - prior to b-school I was a chemical engineer at a healthcare company. It actually has been a much smoother transition than I expected. I felt like my engineering background has helped me as a marketer, understanding the science/operations behind what it takes to develop/launch a product. If you are a career switcher as well I would recommend that you try and focus on your "story" about why you want to go into marketing - a passion for marketing is the #1 thing that companies look for when recruiting, regardless of background. ALso prior to business school I had only taken science/engineering coursework through undergraduate, and in general I feel that Booth's curriculum has prepared me very well for a long-tern career in marketing.

Art: At Chicago Booth we're focused on equipping our students to be successful marketers who create value in the marketplace … not just who create good marketing and advertising programs. We believe that the education our students receive in Marketing, Leadership and the other disciplines of the school (e.g. Finance, Accounting, Strategy, Economics) uniquely equips students to be successful Marketers and General Managers (e.g. Brand Managers) who can work across the entire organization to drive real value in the marketplace.

spati: Hi, thanks for hosting this online chat. I understand that MBA students register for courses on a point-based bidding system - could you please elaborate further on the process?

Robert: Hi. You are absolutely welcome! You are correct--we use a bidding system to sign up for classes. In the beginning of the year, each student is given a certain number of points to use to bid on classes. Each class holds up to 65 students. If fewer than 65 students bid on a class, all of them are enrolled for 0 points. If more than 65 students bid, the 65 students with the highest bids will get the class and the remaining students will have their points refunded to them for use in further bidding rounds. Overall, now that I am comfortable with the system, I feel good about it because it forces students to think hard about the classes they want and prioritize those classes. Also, it is very much in line with the quantitative, economic approach of Chicago Booth, so I think it is very fitting.

G-129512959: Is your marketing curriculum lecture based or case based? Or a combination of both?

Art: Hi, it's a combination of both. Some Marketing courses have quite a few cases (e.g. the Marketing Strategy Class, Channels Strategy, Integrated Brand Communications). Others have just a few cases (e.g. Marketing Research, New Product Development). When the professor feels cases are a good way to convey the concepts and principles of his/her course, then cases are used.

Allie: I am interested in nonprofit consulting after my MBA, what prospectus Booth provides for such a career choice

Kurt: Allie, there are many things you can do at Booth to prepare for careers in non-profit. First our discipline based approach teached you the critical skills to successful in any organiziation be it profit or non. To supplement this fundamental understanding of organizations and markets,students can also take elective classes in other areas of the University taking advantage of classes in Public Policy, Social Service Administration, Sociology etc. We also offer courses in Social Entrepreneurship, and sponsor internship funding for non-profits through our EIP program. Finally we have several student groups whose mission revolves around work with non-profits and social impact, Chicago Global Citizens, Net Impact, Emerging Markets group etc.

jimmy33: What in your opinion are the benefits of learning marketing in a classroom environment vs in the "real world?"

Art: Hi Jimmy, there are a lot of benefits to the classroom environment. You have greater time to think about theory and approaches rather than just reacting in the moment. You get a comprehensive view of Marketing and how all the pieces fit together in the classroom. You get to take risks in more of a controlled environment. That said, I like the opportunity to apply the the theory to the real-world -- we have Marketing Lab classes that provide these opportunities, case competitions, opportunities to visit marketing companies in different cities, etc.

Spencer: How does the Marketing concentration prepare students who find themselves in younger companies and startups that lack database feeds and rich sets of internal data? Is the concentration more geared towards established companies like Kraft?

Susan: The marketing courses offered at Booth are very popular with students that have a variety of backgrounds - they are not just tailored to the students doing traditional marketing stints at a CPG firm. Several of my classmates worked at start-ups and smaller companies this summer - in general I feel like they used the marketing tools they learned through coursework even more than any of the CPG interns. Positions at these types of companies tend to take on larger amounts of responsibility, and marketing is a critical element to much of this work. If you are interested in working at a smaller business/start-up I would recommend that you compliment your marketing concentration with a concentration in entrepreneurship, this is a common double concentration for many students at Booth. Hope this answers your questions!

yvette: Hi, all, I've noticed that Chicago Booth is really strong in data analysis of marketing, how about high level marketing strategy then?

Art: Hi Yvette, most of our Marketing Courses address strategy topics, then follow-up with tools and concepts (some of them quantitative) on measuring the impact of those strategies. For example, the Marketing Strategy course deals with strategic marketing overall, as well as tactical marketing. Pricing Strategy, Channels Strategy, Integrated Brand Communications, New Product Development, Services Marketing ... all of these courses have strategic topics that are covered as well as tools/concepts for implementing the marketing strategies.

Meredith: Hi, can you speak to the difference between Round 1 and Round 2 applicants? Is the first round significantly more competitive than the second?

Andrea: Statistically, there's very little difference between the two rounds, so as a general rule, apply when your application is at it's best. There may be some slight advantages to R1 in that your application is in early and you have first chance at any scholarships or fellowships. However, R2 tends to be our biggest in terms of number of applications and number of offers.

Silvana: Professor Middlebrooks, is it possible for an MBA student to participate as an assistant in some marketing research project?

Art: Silvana, it is certainly possible! Some students serve as Teaching Assistant's for marketing faculty, and this is more common. PhD students are more involved with faculty research. The thing is that many of these research projects span fairly long periods of time, and require intense involvement (which doesn't work as well for full-time MBA students given their coursework, recruiting, extra-curricular activities, etc.).

Alejandra_ai: Booth has made any changes in the courses after the financial crisis?.

Kurt: Chicago has introduced some new courses to better understand and teach people on common themes that lead up to financial crisis. One class that is being introduced this spring The Analytics of Financial Crisis will look at the history of financial crisis, including crisis that have manifested in Argentina, Japan, the US etc. and look at unifying themes strategies to better recognize and potentially prevent these things from happening.

Mary: Hi Art, I have an interest in consumer loyalty programs, do you know of professors in the Marketing department that have done research in this area?

Art: Hi Mary, Oleg Urminsky, who teaches the Marketing Research class, has a special interest in Consumer Loyalty programs. Some of his research appears in the recent marketing edition of Chicago Booth's "Capital Ideas" publication, which is available on the Chicago Booth website (there's a widget on the home page for Capital Ideas).

Andrea: Would you say your marketing program is more quantitative than others and do you see the marketing profession moving in that direction?

Robert: Definitely. Our marketing program is rooted in data-driven marketing and economics, and that approach is one of the elements that drew me to Chicago Booth. We frequently use quantitative analysis to shed light on case-studies, and there is even an entire class devoted to Data-driven Marketing. This class focuses on using statistical programs to conduct regression analysis to make pricing decisions and marketing spend decisions. With companies increasingly focused on measuring the ROI from all marketing initiatives, I believe the data driven approach to marketing is very valuable and is the wave of the future.

G-129501373: Question about Special Interest Clubs, can someone please describe the Dean's Marketing Advisory Group?

Bradley: G-129501373 - The Dean's Marketing Advisory Committee (DMAC) works with a team to help brand and promote the school. As you can imagine with the renaming of the school last year, it is really exciting time to be a part of DMAC!

G-129543140: Could you speak to the current job market for marketing internships and full-time positions? How have career changers (those who were not previously in marketing) fared?

Bradley: G-129543140 - The current job market is tough for everyone out there. That said, Chicago Booth still has hundreds of companies that are posting jobs and coming to campus to recruit talent. Due to all of the available resources at Booth, career switchers are just as well-prepared to earn offers as those who come from a background in marketing.

MIchael: Bradley, can you fill us in a little more on your experience with Tula foods? I'm greatly interested in getting involved with sales/marketing for a start up organization and would love to hear some of your feedback on the experience

Bradley: Michael - I had a great experience at Tula Foods this summer. Working at a startup offered me the chance to see how all of the elements of business must fit together in order to grow a successful enterprise. So in addition to working on marketing and strategic projects, such as designing a sampling program to raise brand awareness, I had a chance to see how the operations and the finance functions played an important role as well. Working for a Booth alumna, she really understood where I was coming from and was able to give me a great experience.

Cristina: I see that all of you are involved in the Marketing Group, what sort of activities do you do in your club?

Robert: Hi Cristina. The Marketing group is very active! The major activities include Lunch and Learns with marketing executives, interview preparation, resume reviews, social outings, and much more. Also, the marketing group plays an important role in hosting Chicago Booth's annual QME marketing conference, which brings together marketing experts across the world to discuss the future of the field.

Anu_1: I attended a reception where the speaker made it very clear that Booth's marketing program is heavily quantitative. What types of math classes should one take before attending Booth in order to prepare for the quantitative element of your marketing courses?

Bradley: Anu_1 - Booth's marketing program is heavily quantitative, and the faculty are renowned for their prowess in this dimension. Fortunately, students are well-prepared for the marketing curriculum due to the Foundations courses, including microeconomics and statistics or regression.

Sofia: I am scheduled to visit campus and sit in on classes next week. Is it possible for me to request sitting in on a marketing class?

Andrea: Hi Sofia. That would depend on the day you plan to visit and if a Marketing class is available. When you sign in with the Admissions office, you will receive a list of available classes and will be able to choose the course you wish visit at that time.

Alejandra_ai: Which % of grad ends working at any Marketing position? and how much in finance?

Andrea: Our full report for this past year will be available on our website in a few weeks, but it's looking to be about a third of the class in Finance and 10% in Marketing.

Eran: Hi thank you for your time. I wanted to ask about interviews for international students, are they also take place in Chicago?

Andrea: Hi Eran. We have a large group of alumni around the world that help us with interviewing, so most of our international students interview locally with alumni. You are always welcome to come to Chicago and interview, but there is not preference on our end. It's really what's most convenient for you.

TJH: Hello. This is a follow-up to a comment by Robert. Could you provide a little more detail on the New Product labs? i.e. Are these individual study labs, or groups? How do students get involved in these? Is there any instruction? Any additional insight would be helpful. Thanks!

Robert: Hi TJH. I would be more than happy to follow-up. The projects are done for a real company, and each student works in groups of 8-10 students. There is a professor who supervises the groups, meeting with them on a weekly basis. Overall, these labs tend to be more work than the average class, but also tend to be very rewarding.

ami: hi i have been working for last 5 years in our family business and i have to handle almost everything from production to buyers.i have no specific department or field that i work in.how will that effect my chances of getting in booth.will it have any negative effect?

Kurt: This will not have a negative impact, it all depends on how you position your experience in the application. How has this experience shaped your career and your vision for an MBA?

MTaiwan: Hi Professor Middlebrooks, you mentioned the cooperation with AC Nielson for US and emerging market research. Will this data be incorporated into specific marketing courses with a focus on East Asia or emerging markets? Thank you.

Art: Hi, to clarify, our agreement with Nielsen for Academic use of their data is for their U.S.-only data at this time. Also, there isn't a specific Marketing course at Chicago Booth focused only on East Asia or emerging markets.

Shaun: For applicants applying to the marketing program, is professional marketing experience required? If so, how much should an application focus on marketing experience?

Bradley: Hi Shuan - Professional marketing experience is definitely not required in order to pursue a post-MBA career in marketing. I worked in consulting before coming to Booth, and Susan and Roberto and many of my classmates are also career switchers. The Marketing Group does a great job of preparing students for internship recruiting, and the flexible curriculum also ensures that students are able to take marketing classes before the summer so that they are prepared.

SD: Could you speak to the resources (i.e., second year students, professors, advisors, etc.) that are available to guide you for what courses to take within the Marketing concentration based on your future career path in Marketing.

Susan: When choosing courses last year I relied alot on the second year students for recommendations. The Marketing Group also provides a career resource guide at the beginning of the year with recommended courses depending on the specific career path(brand management, market research, etc.). I also spoke with alumni to get their recommendations on courses they felt had helped them with their career. Finally, Booth has academic advisers that can provide guidance on the curriculum.

mbahopeful: Hi thank you for setting up the chat. Based on the public stats, I feel that Booth tend to admit more experienced applicants. I am 26 years old and currently enrolled in a corporate leadership development program. I am wondering what are some of the ways that younger students have uniquely contributed to the class room experience in the past? Could you provide one or two examples? Thanks!

Andrea: Hi mbahopeful. Our average age actually ranges from 25-27, with students right out of undergrad, students with 10+ years of experience and everything in between. We are less concerned with a number when it comes to your professional experiences, but are evaluating the quality and depth of the experiences that you have had to date. All of our students activitely contribute inside and outside of the classroom and that is the expectation. I would encourage you to talk to students to gain their perspective and I think you'll find that they are learning as much from their classmates as they are from faculty, regardless of the experience.

BoothToBe: Hi, thanks for taking our questions. I was wondering if there has been a curriculum shift to incorperate the growth of digital and interactive marketing: social networking ads/gadgets, video game ads, mobile, etc. Also, what is the Kilts Center's perspective on how marketers can utilize the increasing amount of consumer data from non-traditional sources (e.g. telcos) to better target consumers?

Art: Hi, right now aspects of digital/online/interactive marketing are covered where relevant and appropriate in several Marketing Courses, for example in the Integrated Brand Communications course, Channel Strategy course, and Entrepreneurial Selling course. Outside of traditional classes, this year we are working to offer a seminar series in conjunction with the Entrepreneurship department on online/digital marketing tactics. This would be additional programming, not a “for credit” course. In terms of utilizing data to improve targeting, this is a research interest of several of our Marketing faculty.

Susan: Thanks to everyone for joining and for all the great questions!! Best of luck with the application process....

Robert: Hi everyone. Thanks so much for tuning in! Overall, I think Chicago Booth is a rigorous school that prepares its graduates to handle any challenge. Good luck in your searches!

Andrea: Thanks for chatting with us. Hope we were able to answer your questions. Join us for the next chat on Oct. 12 before the Round 1 deadline!!!

Art: Great to chat with you all! Thanks for being with us. Best wishes to all of you in your MBA application process!

Bradley: Thanks everyone for joining the chat today. I hope that you got your questions answered, and feel free to check out http://student.chicagobooth.edu/group/mktg/ for more information about the Marketing Group at Chicago. I hope to meet some of you at the Marketing Booth Live on 10/16!

Kurt: Thanks for the great questions and best of luck in the MBA selection process.

Carrie: Thanks for the great questions! We encourage everyone to visit campus in the next few weeks. For more detailed information on marketing, join us for the Booth Live on October 16, 2009, which specifically focuses on marketing!