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2014/2015  KAN-CBCMU1004U  Strategic Brand Management and PharmaSim Simulation Game

English Title
Strategic Brand Management and PharmaSim Simulation Game

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Quarter
Course period Spring
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Thyra Uth Thomsen - Department of Marketing (Marketing)
  • Torsten Ringberg - Department of Marketing (Marketing)
Main academic disciplines
  • Marketing
Last updated on 10-09-2014
Learning objectives
At the end of the course the student is expected to be able to:
  • Develop strategic goals based on market information in order to manage brands in the concrete case situation.
  • Identify and analyze relevant qualitative and quantitative information from the concrete case situation using appropriate theories, concepts and metrics.
  • Develop a critical and incisive mindset that enables the student to analyze implications of strategic decisions and to improve the latter for a brand in the concrete case situation.
  • Apply central theories, concepts and metrics of the course in a relevant way to analyze, evaluate and critically reflect upon the concrete case situation in order to develop a strategic brand management plan for a strategic business unit.
Strategic Brand Management and PharmaSim Simulation Game:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual
Size of written product Max. 15 pages
Assignment type Report
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Spring Term
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content and structure

Aim of the course
The most valuable asset that a company has is its brand/s . Brand value includes a range of factors, such as financials, availability, ease of use, uniqueness, attributes, emotional, and symbolic factors and how these factors match with consumers’ physical and emotional needs.  This is the case for both large conglomerates and small start-up companies. Brand Management is the concept of organizing marketing activities around the identification, positioning, communication and optimization of brands and brand portfolios. Although manufacturing processes, product designs, service and retail concepts often can be replictaed by competitors it is less easy to replicate strong beliefs, emotions, and attitudes among customers toward a brand. Like people, brands have a certain 'personality'. This 'personality' differentiates it from other brands and provides it with the opportunity to establish a market position and expand if managed properly.
The Strategic Brand Management course provides students with both theoretical frameworks and tools necessary to thinks strategically and to manage a portfolio of brands, including making decisions in a simulated brand environment. As such, students will play in teams of around three individuals and participate in all aspects of information gathering, analysis, strategic decision making, and implementation over 8-10 simulated periods (years).
The course provides students with a global theoretical framework for strategic brand management, which enables the students to make and implement well-informed strategic decisions in a simulated environment. The simulation game involves topics such as creating brand value and positioning, dealing with the financial aspects of brand management, as well as understanding the functions of brand management to deliver sustained customer value and brand loyalty. It also demands practical management of strategic planning, product management, and marketing mix decisions (price, promotion, discounts, segmentation, etc.) as well as internal negotiations among the team members. Students learn how to grow brand value through carefully designed and implemented brand and line extension decisions. Students also study how to adjust brand strategies over time to maximize the company earnings.
PharmaSim Simulation Game
PharmaSim drives home both strategic decisions and tactical implementations thru the 4x Ps of Marketing: Pricing, Promotion, Product and Place (distribution). It introducies students to the concepts of brand value and marketing planning for multiple product lines. The brand management simulation covers segmentation, positioning, management of a portfolio of brands, integrated marketing communications, and multiple channels with intermediaries.  PharmaSim is co-authored with Thomas Kinnear of the University of Michigan, and is used at leading universities worldwide. PharmaSim allows students to apply business concepts in a dynamic, integrative environment.
The Case:  Groups with around three students take the role of a brand management team in the over-the-counter pharmaceutical industry during 8-10 simulated periods. As members of the brand management team, students discuss, analyze data, make strategic product decisions such as reformulating their brand, introducing a line extension, and launching a new brand and manage the marketing mix for their products. Student teams learn how to optimize interaction with consumers and channel partners, measuring their progress through marketing research.

Teaching methods
This course will include active team work in small groups who compete with one another, preceded by as well as interspersed with course instructions. The actual simulation takes place during an intense two-week period. The simulation is supplemented with several lectures prior to the two-week simulation. A few of the lectures might be replaced by on-line activities.Attendance and participation are essential during all activities.
Expected literature

PharmasSim from Interpretive.com

A licence to the game will be provided by the programme (if funding allows) more information will be given in the weeks before the course starts

Last updated on 10-09-2014