2019-2020 / MARK0781-2

Strategic Marketing Seminar


30h Th

Number of credits

 Master in management, professional focus in law and management5 crédits 
 Master in management, professional focus in law5 crédits 
 Master in management (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in management (60 ECTS)5 crédits 


Claire Gruslin, Benjamin Österle

Language(s) of instruction

English language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the first semester, review in January


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

The content of the course will be along the lines of Kotler and Keller (2016), Marketing Management, 15th Global Edition.
Specifically, the course will especially focus on the following content of the book:

  • Part 1: Introducton and Understanding Marketing Management (Day 1)
  • Part 3: Connecting with Customers (Day 1 & 2)
  • Part 5: Creating Value (Day 3 & 4)
  • Part 6: Delivering Value (Day 5 & 6)
  • Part 7: Communicating Value (Day 7 & 8)

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

Overall objectives
At the end of the seminar, students shall be able to apply key frameworks and theories to analyze marketing-related issues in a strategic and analytical way to support the decision-making process of Chief Executives of any organization.
Key learning outcomes
The Strategic Marketing seminar contributes to the following Key Learning Outcomes (KLO):

  • Strategy (KLO1): Establish a strategy in order to optimize the value chain of a company...
    ... based on the analysis of its financial and economic context. ... taking into account its political, social, and societal context. ... taking into account its legal constraints. ... adopting the position of a marketing specialist. ... demonstrating a critical mind and scientific precision.
  • Implementation (KLO2): Take charge of the everyday management of a company, and more especially of a project related to strategic marketing...
    ... working efficiently in an international and multidisciplinary team, among others in a leading position. ... analyzing one's managerial practice with a critical and ethical mind.
  • Communication (KLO4): Communicate efficiently about a company...
    ... in at least two languages, including English and French. ... taking into account the multicultural and international features of their environment.
  • Adaptability (KLO5): Adapt one's managerial practice to the needs of a fast-evolving world...
    ... being conscious of its societal, economic, political, and environmental issues. ... showing curiosity and a scientific precision of academic level. ... showing creativity, autonomy, and entrepreneurial spirit. ... developing one's expertise in a lifelong learning perspective.

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

The students are required to participate actively during the group sessions. Accordingly, they need a good proficiency level in spoken and written English.
Each student should have followed at least one course of Basics/Principles in Marketing prior to taking the Strategic Marketing Seminar

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

The sessions will follow a "sandwich-architecture".

  • The first of the nine 3.5-hour sessions will begin with an introduction, outlining the overall objective, agenda, and context of the entire course. It will then proceed with the contents of the upcoming first session.
  • Most of the sessions will then be taught in alternating phases of collective learning and individual learning, each about 20-25mins in length. In the collective learning phases, the foundational theoretical inputs will be delivered by the lecturer in traditional teacher-centered, frontal teaching. For the individual learning phases, the students will be given short, precisely formulated tasks related to the input previously given in the collective learning phase, which they are then supposed to fulfill either individually or in small groups within the following 10-15mins.
  • A brief classroom assessment (e.g. in the form of a short presentation/talk of one or several group speakers, a collective brain storming, multiple-choice tests using classroom response systems, or other classroom assessment techniques) at the end of the individual learning phases ensures the documentation of the results.
  • The teacher provides a recapitulation of the content of the session and the results towards the end of each 3.5-hour session. Since a focus of the course is on implementation, this recapitulation will include short group assignments, for which the students have 30mins to 1hr to complete at the end of the session, during which the instructor is available for questions. For these assignments the students will be divided into groups of 6 persons in the first session, which are final for the whole duration of the seminar.
  • Within the assignments, the groups will have to complete a sample marketing plan in several steps (assignments of each day) over the two consecutive weeks of the International Fortnight Program, comparable to the "Sonic Marketing Plan and Exercises" in the Appendix of Kotler and Keller (2016). The groups can freely choose one out of a range of ten companies from different industries, for which they will develop their marketing plan. The complete marketing plan of each group will also be the group evaluation part of the final grade and account for 30% of the overall grading.
  • For peer instructions in the next sessions, and to provide feedback on the group assignments of each day, the instructor is free to randomly chose one group for in-class presentation of their results of the assignment in the next session, or groups are free to volunteer. In order to be able to do so, students are required to upload the results of their daily assignment as a maximum 3-slide Powerpoint-Presentation on LOLA by the end of the day. The instructor will then ask the selected or volunteering group specific questions related to the assignment. The instructor's role is to challenge the students' answers and facilitate learning through discussion. Students on the other hand also benefit from direct feedback on their assignment, which they can in turn implement in the final version of their marketing plan.
  • Additionally, a conclusion of the day is provided, using a classroom response system (e.g. www.wooclap.com; www.eduvote.ch), by which thestudents will be able to give immediate feedback on the session (e.g. what was the most important part? What remains unclear? What was the muddiest point of the session?), to which the teacher will respond to at the beginning of the next session, before a brief outlook at this next session will be given.
Active student participation is highly recommended.

Mode of delivery (face-to-face ; distance-learning)

All lectures will be face-to-face. Note that students have to prepare the team activitiess ahead. 

Recommended or required readings

Required readings:

  • Kotler and Keller. (2016), Marketing Management, 15th Global Edition (copies are available at the library Graulich).

Assessment methods and criteria

The overall grading will be based on two different examinations:

  • Individual evaluation (70%):  a multiple-choice exam (written) in January 2020 
  • Group evaluation (30%):  Sample marketing plan developed in group work based on the assignments at the end of each class, to be submitted by October 31, 2019
Assessment criteria:

In line with the previously mentioned KLOs, the following criteria - among others - will be used to assess the students' progress:

  • Understanding of marketing concepts (KLO1);
  • Congruent application of marketing concepts (KLO1);
  • Critical attitude (KLO1);
  • Analytical mind (KLO1);
  • The rigour, concision and depth of your analysis (KLO1);
  • The congruence and creativity of your decisions (KLO5).

Work placement(s)

Organizational remarks

(See the document available on Lola for all guidelines related to the organization of the seminar)
The course is organized within the context of the International Fortnight program of HEC Liège - Management School of the University of Liège that aims to welcome visiting faculty from highly reputed foreign academic institutions to teach in their area of expertise and collaborate with HEC Liège faculty, staff, and students in research and other academic activities.
The course consists of 30 class hours and will be held in 9 sessions of 3.5 hours programmed over two consecutive weeks: September 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 23, 24, 25, and 26, from 8:30 AM to 12:00 AM.  The course is given in English.

1. Final exam

  • First session - January:
  • Written Exam (individual evaluation) For the individual evaluation, a multiple-choice exam will be written covering the above-mentioned relevant parts of Kotler and Keller (2016), Marketing Management, 15th Global Edition, and specifically focused on the topics covered in the sessions. To prepare for the exam, carefully review the relevant chapters of Kotler and Keller (2016), specifically the topics covered in the sessions. Exam questions will be of the same style as the ones discussed during classes.
  • Marketing Plan (group evaluation). The marketing plan will be the result of the group work assignments given at the end of each session. For these assignments, students will be divided into groups of 6 in the first session. These groups are final for the whole duration of the seminar. Groups will then be able to choose one company out of a range of 10 from different industries and back-grounds. The groups will then step-by-step develop the marketing plan for this company based on the assignmetns in the sessions. It is expected that the groups apply the concepts and models they learned about in the sessions when developing their marketing plan. It is imperative to give reasons, cite evidence, and explain all choices made in the marketing plan. The full marketing plan should comprise of either one 8-page word document per group (.doc or .docx), Times New Roman, 12pts, single space lines and 2.5cm margins, tables and figures are allowed or one 10-slide Powerpoint slideset, including notes and comments per group (.ppt or .pptx). The marketing plan is to be submitted by October 31, 2019
  • Second session - August-September: Written Exam (individual evaluation) Carefully review the relevant chapters of Kotler and Keller (2016), Marketing Management, 15th Global Edition.  The exam questions will be of the same style as the ones of the first session.  The exam in second session accounts for 100% of the final grade.
2. Attendance
Attendance is compulsory; it is important to participate in every session.
We only excuse your absence to the class in case of an imperious reason (such as sickness, family emergency). We need an original and official proof such as a medical certificate.
IMPORTANT: Given the importance of taking part in every session, the Article 37(§2) from the 'Academic and Examination Regulations' of the University of Liege (available here: http://bit.ly/2bMA71B) is applicable. According to this article, the teaching staff may declare students inadmissible for exams if they did not (i) physically participate in the seminar, or (ii) submitted their work in due time. Students who did not attend the seminar AND did provide an official proof may be considered eligible for the second session exam, but additional work is first required.

This syllabus is designed to be a guide to the class and may change during the semester depending on various factors such as the number of students registered.



  • Prof. Benjamin Oesterle
Course coordinator:
Claire Gruslin.  Should you have any questions with regard to the seminar, please do contact the coordinator first.