GRA 6433 Marketing Communication

GRA 6433 Marketing Communication

Course code: 
GRA 6433
Course coordinator: 
Klemens Knöferle
Course name in Norwegian: 
Marketing Communication
Product category: 
MSc in Strategic Marketing Management
2017 Autumn
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

Communication is a fundamental part of most marketplace transactions. In its purest form, price communicates the information necessary for a transaction. In most cases, however, marketers have to communicate more than just price in order to establish, sustain, and grow their business. So how does communication in the marketplace work? In order to address this important question, this course aims to provide a deep understanding of marketing communication, both in terms of real-life application and as a field of scientific research.

Over the duration of the course, students will work in groups to develop a communication strategy for a real industry client. The lectures will provide inspiration for the group projects in two ways:
1) We will discuss key theories and findings in advertising research and consumer psychology. These insights may be used in the communication strategy, but we will also pay close attention to theoretical and methodological challenges in these research areas.
2) We will meet guest speakers holding various key functions in marketing communication (e.g., on the agency side, the client side, the media side). These practitioners will provide insights into the daily business and the current challenges of marketing communication.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge

Upon successful completion of this course, the students will have a sound platform of knowledge on:

  • The science of marketing communication: On the one hand, theories of sensory perception, attention, memory, and emotion explain how consumers process marketing messages. On the other hand, theories of attitude formation and persuasion help us understand how consumers are influenced by marketing communication. We will critically discuss these theories and their potential to guide managerial decision-making. In addition, we will take deep dives into more specialized fields of research (e.g., advertising language, viral marketing).
  • The practice of marketing communication: Students will learn about key roles and responsibilities in marketing communication (e.g., communications manager, agency account manager, creative director, copywriter). Various guest speakers will present their work in these roles and discuss best practices.
Learning outcomes - Skills

Upon successful completion of this course, the students will be able to

  • Address the managerial challenges of marketing communication in an analytical manner
  • Develop a communication strategy based on a client briefing
  • Present a communication strategy in a clear and convincing way
  • Critically evaluate the internal and external validity of scientific research in the field of marketing communication
Learning Outcome - Reflection

After completing this course, students should appreciate key psychological and business-related factors that affect the effectiveness of marketing communication. The theoretical and practical knowledge provided in the course should enable students to critically assess marketing communication activities from the perspective of a marketer, but also in their role as consumers.

Course content
  • Marketing communications in theory and practice
  • Appealing to the senses
  • Understanding consumer attention
  • Make it stick: Memory and learning
  • (How) does subconscious advertising work?
  • Persuasion and attitude change
  • Social influence techniques
  • The language of marketing communications
  • Emotions in advertising
  • Viral marketing
Learning process and requirements to students

The course is a combination of class room lectures and out-of-class project work.

Please note that while attendance is not compulsory in all courses, it is the student’s own responsibility to obtain any information provided in class.

This is a course with continuous assessment (several exam components) and one final exam code. Each exam component is graded by using points on a scale from 0-100. The components will be weighted together according to the information in the course description in order to calculate the final letter grade for the examination code (course). Students who fail to participate in one/some/all exam elements will get a lower grade or may fail the course. You will find detailed information about the point system and the cut off points with reference to the letter grades when the course start.

At resit, all exam components must, as a main rule, be retaken during next scheduled course.

Software tools

All courses in the Masters programme will assume that students have fulfilled the admission requirements for the programme. In addition, courses in second, third and/or fourth semester can have specific prerequisites and will assume that students have followed normal study progression. For double degree and exchange students, please note that equivalent courses are accepted.

Required prerequisite knowledge

GRA 4145 Brand Management or equivalent.

Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Group (4 - 5)
1 Semester(s)
Group assignment and presentation in class. Group size: 4-5 students.

Business representatives will be present during the presentation.
Exam code: 
Grading scale: 
Point scale leading to ECTS letter grade
Examination when next scheduled course
Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Written submission
Support materials: 
  • Bilingual dictionary
3 Hour(s)
Written examination
Exam code: 
Grading scale: 
Point scale leading to ECTS letter grade
Examination when next scheduled course
Exam organisation: 
Continuous assessment
Grading scale: 
Total weight: 
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 6 ECTS credits corresponds to a workload of at least 160 hours.