September 8, 2015

Digital Marketing as educational topic in the University of Twente

It is some time ago that this blog was updated but last year has been a rally busy one. New courses, new challenges and new research lines together with my colleagues in the University of Twente and abroad. I will try to update the readers on the activities of the last year and keep them up-to-date on the future developments.
This year we offered for the first time to our 2nd year undergraduates of International Business Administration (IBA) the possibility to follow the elective module (15 ECs) Digital Marketing for Networked Businesses. The module proved to be very popular among students, we got 100 students, double number than we had hoped for. The module was including  a wide range of topics: "traditional" E-Marketing topics, Social Media Marketing, Big-Data and Big Data driven Marketing, Social Monitoring tools, online reputation management but also rather unique topics for a university curriculum like Internet of Things and Neuromarketing.
Sanne Heerink of Social Inc during her guest lecture
An important innovative element of the module was one of the group assignments, namely participation in the Google Online Marketing Challenge. This unique project of Google where around 3.000 groups of students from all over the world take part gets the students in touch with the practice of SEM / SEA: They have to develop a real AdWords campaign for a real business or non-profit organization with a budget of US $ 250 made available by Google. This is to my knowledge the first time that students from a Dutch research university took part in the project. The project ended with a Symposium (photo below) in the Classroom of the Future of the University of Twente where our groups presented the results of their work. The final evaluation of the campaigns was done by Google.

The Module has been quite successful if I judge from the student evaluations and the comments we received. A very big part of this success is because of all the efforts of my colleagues in the faculty and our student assistants but also due to the great presentations and help of our guest lecturers. I would like to thank all of companies who contributed lectures for their great and inspiring presentations: Team Nijhuis, Social Inc, Greenberry and Noldus.
In the meantime the results of the Google Online Marketing Challenge are known: Our groups have performed particularly well. Six groups received the STRONG and seven the GOOD ratings, not bad for a first time participation by the school.
The plans for next year are also interesting for those interested in education in Digital Marketing on Master level. Next to the existing undergraduate module Digital Marketing for Networked Business, for the first time we will offer the elective (Advanced Topics of) Digital Marketing as part of our Business Administration MSc profile Marketing and Strategy. With these courses and some more developments that are under way (I will talk about these in another post) we hope to realize our ambition to make the University of Twente the place to be for those interested for a career in Digital Marketing. We already cover with these two educational units most digital marketing skills in demand, as these are identified in a recent report of Marketing Profs.