University of Florida
Problems and Methods of
Alan G. Sawyer
300A Bryan Hall
(352) 392-0161, x-1238#
(South end of the building;
no elevator; I am glad to meet
elsewhere with handicapped students)
Course Overview and Objectives
This course is intended to give you an understanding and appreciation of marketing
problems and decisions and how they are conceived and implemented in organizations
The major theme is the importance of the customer and an understanding of its
linkage to the substance of marketing, namely the
creation of a marketing strategy and specific
action plan to profitably create and deliver value to the customer
This course discusses how to
gain an understanding of the consumer, competition, the environment facing a marketing
decision-maker, and a variety of marketing decisions.
These include decisions about current and
potential products and services, the product and the product's benefits, marketing communications
such as advertising and promotion, price, and distribution system.
All these marketing elements
must be combined to create value in the customer's mind.
We will use both lecture/discussion and the case method.
Without the latter, one can be
easily misled that marketing is a grab bag of concepts and terms and ideas that must be
memorized and then easily implemented in any given instance.
The case method forces one to
come to grips with specific applications that require operationalization of these concepts and
ideas, while attempting to make decisions about a profitable strategy that can succeed in the
The use of the case method is based on the widely accepted philosophy
that one best learns by doing something, rather than by only listening to someone else talk about
how to do something.
In addition, I do not want you to waste your time to try to memorize things
to spit out on an exam.
The “textbook” is the course lecture notes. These lectures focus only on issues I think are
most relevant to you.
Any quizzes or exams will cover only the lecture notes. For a more
organized text, I recommend that you also read either a short textbook,
A Framework for
(4th edition), by Philip Kotler and Kevin Keller (Pearson/Prentice-Hall)
or a considerably longer and more thorough textbook by the same authors,
The latter is the “standard” MBA text, but in
many places, it seems to me to be stuffed with too much, such that the trees obscure the woods.
I have indicated which chapters in the
text are appropriate to read to prepare for
either the lecture topics or the cases to be discussed on that date.
Clearly, the reading is heaviest
at the beginning of the term, so you should prepare accordingly to catch up.