Fifty years ago, television was a uniquely innovative method of bringing families together for entertainment. But in today’s technology-driven world, the power of Internet access continues to increase, leveling the playing field between two seemingly different mediums. What is the best way to adapt to the unpredictable media market through advertising? That was just one of the many questions presented to nearly 70 marketing moguls at this year’s Marketing Science Institute’s (MSI) Marketing Metrics Conference. In an eye-opening presentation, Horst Stipp, senior vice president of NBC Universal, discussed the ability of changing media to provide both opportunities and challenges to create new marketing communication methods. Stipp was one of several knowledgeable speakers that transformed the Adolphus Hotel in Dallas, Texas to a “meeting of the marketing minds” on September 10-12. Mays Business School at Texas A&M University sponsored the event, which was co-organized by Mays Marketing Professor Venkatesh Shankar.

Sorescu and Stipp
Mays Associate Professor Alina Sorescu (left) and Senior Vice President of NBC Universal Horst Stipp (right) were two of the participants at the three-day MSI Marketing Metrics Conference.

Shankar selected conference speakers based on the most interesting and relevant metrics research, focusing on and connecting four main areas: product, customer, channel, and organization. The researchers focused their knowledge on marketing methods that connected two or more of these specific dimensions. Presenter Dave Riebstein from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania joined Stipp in offering useful updates to marketing practices as he introduced a study, co-authored with Shankar, on the use of innovation metrics jointly undertaken with the consulting group McKinsey & Co. Following the presentation, Texas A&M University Distinguished Professor of Marketing Rajan Varadarajan moderated a discussion on the topic, which Shankar says provided important insights for the industry.

Also participating in the conference from Mays was Associate Professor of Marketing Alina Sorescu. Shankar and Sorescu presented their current research project focusing on the impact of business model changes on shareholder value. They showed that changes to the marketing components of the business model are important to boost shareholder value and stay on top in the corporate world, but changes to too many components may make the business suffer. “Several well-known companies in the audience were going through this kind of experience at the time, and were very interested in what we had to say,” Shankar said. “It was a lively discussion, showing the relevance of our work.”

Mays marketing doctoral students Jeff Meyer and Gautham Gopal also contributed to the conference by serving as scribes and preparing a conference summary to be published by MSI.

In addition to co-sponsoring the conference, Mays Business School hosted a reception the evening before the event for conference attendees. Shankar explained that this kind of event is what defines the Mays. “MSI is the leading academic-practitioner organization in the marketing field, so it was a natural fit for us to participate in such a cutting-edge conference,” he said. Based on the feedback from conference participants, the conference was a resounding success, solidifying Mays’ marketing department reputation as one focused on the newest findings in research.