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The Marketing Function

When you are standing at the bathroom sink tomorrow morning, squeezing toothpaste onto your toothbrush, consider this: A team of people used the techniques of business-to-consumer marketing to persuade you to purchase the tube in your hand. Prior to that decision, the company that produced the toothpaste relied on business-to-business marketing to persuade the retailer to stock the toothpaste on its shelves.

Both business objectives were achieved through a combination of the fundamental fours P's of marketing: product, place, price, and promotion.

Major Overview

Marketing touches all aspects of a business organization and helps shape and direct corporate strategy. It begins with understanding the needs and wants of a firm's customers, leads to the development of new products, and establishes how a company communicates with customers about its products.

"Business has only two functions—marketing and innovation." - Peter Drucker

The marketing faculty at Penn State are among the world's leading scholars in consumer marketing, business-to-business marketing, and quantitative modeling of buyer behavior and firm interaction. They consistently publish theoretically rigorous and managerially relevant research that contributes to our understanding of marketing issues. The department is consistently ranked in the top 20 marketing departments in the U.S. on research output. The faculty are keenly interested in working with bright and enthusiastic individuals who seek to advance knowledge and become leading scholars in top business schools. Check out the marketing PhD program.

Faculty members are also sought-after thought leaders in the business world. The Institute for the Study of Business Markets, led by Penn State marketing faculty, is a prominent center of thought-leadership in the Business to Business (B2B) Marketing and eBusiness areas. Our faculty members regularly consult with companies such as Dupont, IBM, and SAP on important strategic problems. The Center for Sports Business & Research, also led by Penn State marketing faculty, likewise provides thought-leadership in the area of business research on the burgeoning sports industry.

Becoming a Marketing Major

Interested in becoming a Marketing major? Go to the Undergraduate Student Exchange Website that describes exactly what you need to enter a major.