Research and teaching at the Chair of Marketing focus on the issue of how enterprises may gain long-lasting competitive advantage.
The competitive environment is getting tougher for enterprises: The increasing globalization, the increasing comparability of products from the customer’s perspective (commoditization), the growing significance of a wide product range for satisfying any needs, e.g. the extension of products by a digital component, as well as new competitors threaten envisaged market positions. Enterprises need to position themselves in such a way that they can gain and secure long-lasting competitive advantage.
The Chair of Marketing therefore cooperates with enterprises and scientific institutions, both nationally and internationally. Our aim is to make the research projects and practical approach of Witten/Herdecke University well known abroad.
We explore how competitive advantages can be gained and secured, based on the philosophy of market-oriented management: Commercial activities start with the needs of potential customers and further stakeholders, such as employees, suppliers, dealers and the society. The prerequisite of being successful in a market is not only based on an excellent knowledge of the competitors, but also on the knowledge of requirements, values and objectives of the customers and various other stakeholders.
We provide theory-based teaching with a practical approach. Founders and enterprises of the consumer and industrial goods sectors have the opportunity of discussing current issues during courses and lectures.
To be able to manage an enterprise in a market-oriented way, it is necessary to fully understand customer needs. Market research is necessary in order to develop supplies according to the customer’s needs and willingness to pay. This is where we offer years of methodical and practice-relevant experience in the areas of preference measurement and experimental research.
The market research results facilitate among others a targeted development and continuous adjustment of the marketing mix, consisting of the four “Ps”: product, price, place and promotion.
Just focusing on the four marketing “Ps”, however, is not expedient. Customers strive to fully satisfy their needs: They are looking for strong brands and do no longer purchase individual products only, but are interested in comprehensive offers, being enriched by product-related services or systems.
We take up the challenges of dynamic markets and work on innovative concepts for developing and managing brands, product-related services and systems.
The Chair of Marketing of Witten/Herdecke University stands for theory-based and practice-oriented teaching. The contents are embedded in an international context. All courses are English-language courses.
Our courses address various topics, such as:
The main objective of teaching is to encourage the students to critically reflect on the course contents. All courses are therefore interactive, demanding and supporting – intense discussions are an integral part of the courses.
In addition to imparting knowledge, the task of the lecturer is to confront the students with the problems and challenges of research and practice and to elaborate possible solutions together with the students. Through practice-based projects the students learn about the effects of marketing measures not only on the basis of abstract examples, but also based on their own personal experience. The development of innovative strategies and their flexible implementation as well as critical thinking are prerequisites of being successful in dynamic markets.
By supporting the students individually, we do not only impart knowledge more efficiently, but also remove communication barriers and increase the interaction between teachers and students. In addition, the students receive an early feedback on their individual strengths and weaknesses. This allows us to adapt our teaching to the needs of the students and to design it according to the target group; for example, by offering courses that take different previous knowledge levels or different learning outcomes into account.
Teaching has to be research-based and relevant to practice as students need theoretical and methodical knowledge. At the same time we want to enable them to independently use their acquired skills for solving real problems. For this purpose, representatives of companies are involved in courses, and in the seminars the students not only deal with case studies but also with real projects.
In order to solve practically relevant and complex problems it is often necessary to combine knowledge from different fields. Practical relevance therefore also means to design course contents in such a way that the students understand the contents in connection with other related fields. As far as possible we take care that the students deal with interdisciplinary problems during the seminars. The aim is to make them think “outside the box“, and demonstrate that the course contents can be applied to solve further questions.
We do not have relentless lone fighters in mind. Complex practical problems require an effective and efficient cooperation of heterogeneous groups. It is therefore the aim of the courses to promote teamwork and further develop key qualifications.
The students work on and present the topics in groups within the seminars. They define the problems together with partners from companies and present the result to the respective company. This way, the students can further develop their own key qualifications such as working in teams, presenting or discussing in a protected, but practice-oriented environment. Case studies in cooperation with the company partners intend to encourage critical thinking and provide the cooperating companies with new insights.
All research projects employ quantitative and empirical methods, based on findings in the fields of consumer behavior and behavioral economics. The key questions are therefore: How do customers reach a decision and how is it possible to influence their decision?
We publish our research results in leading international journals and at conferences, such as:
Kroschke, M.; Steiner, M.
Steiner, M.; Meissner, M.
Steiner, M.; Wiegand, N.; Eggert, A.; Backhaus, K.
Steiner, M.; Eggert, A.; Ulaga, W.; Backhaus, K.
Bues, M.; Steiner, M.; Stafflage, M.; Krafft, M.
Witt, S.; Wiegand, N.; Steiner, M.; Backhaus, K.
Steiner, M.; Götz, O.; Stieglitz, S.
Backhaus, K.; Steiner, M.; Luegger, K.
Scholl, A.; Manthey, L.; Helm, R.; Steiner, M.