HomeMarketingČlánky o marketinguMarketing Communications Live out Through the Revolution: Is Marketing Communications Teaching Revolutionary, too?

Marketing Communications Live out Through the Revolution: Is Marketing Communications Teaching Revolutionary, too?

Social media has changed – and is changing – the nature of marketing for ever. What is the appropriate way to react to these rapid changes quickly and efficiently? Incorporating multimedia into the teaching process is, perhaps, the way to go. Among many pre-conditions to manage the process successfully, there are a few of critical importance, i.e.: an interdisciplinary approach, mastering technology and monitoring the latest developments in integrated marketing communications and related disciplines. To enhance the process,the shareable and editable environment of Google Docs is a useful collaboration tool for professionals, both internally and across borders.

Social Media Changed Everything

Nothing is the same as it used to be. Social media has changed everything. In a similar way to that in which the printing press changed life in the 15th century, social media in the 21st century represents the greatest step change in our ability to express ourselves in an environment which is global, social, and cheap. Unlike books, which traditionally represent communication of ‘one-to- many’, social media by its character represents the communication of ‘many-to-many’. Its transparency is amazing and its ubiquity formidable. Whether we speak about Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, MySpace, YouTube, or brilliant geolocalization tools FourSquare or Gowalla, communities of millions of users of these applications can communicate directly - and we are getting used to it bit by bit.

As a result, marketing isn’t marketing any more – in the traditional sense - and marketing communications quickly incorporate new communication channels to spread crystal clear, easily verifiable messages. Integrated marketing communications (IMC) become more integrated and PR is truly public in a way that has never been possible before. Bob Little comments on the situation in his blog: ‘Social media could be bringing about not just a democratic revolution in politics but also a revolution in business, based on such revolutionary concepts as transparency, customer consultation, involvement and so on (1). Today’s media landscape is very different from the media landscape we knew in the 20th century.

 

Swiftness of Changes Can Easily Leave Us Behind

If we ignore the changes that are going on – and which are going on with increasing rapidity – we will be left behind. Teaching content and the way it is delivered has an impact on the attitudes of students to a particular subject. It also influences how easy it is to remember that content. Traditionally, the change of academic content was never a rapid process; however, frankly speaking, we still don’t have lessons called e.g. ‘How to incorporate Facebook into your marketing mix’, ‘How to use social media to refine your products’, or ‘How small companies can look big in social media adopting the right strategy’. What can we do to accelerate the pace of change, which is inevitable? I don’t want to highlight just theoretical concepts or discuss ‘what can be done’. Instead, I would like to describe particular new approaches adopted by lecturers at the Department of Languages of the VŠFS:

  -        teaching marketing topics within the frame of CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning) which offers the following benefits in harmony with the Action plan for Language Learning and Linguistic Diversity (1), i.e. it:

  • o   provides opportunities to study content through different perspectives;
  • o   complements the subject of marketing rather than competes with it;
  • o   diversifies methods and forms of classroom practice; and
  • o   increases learners' motivation and confidence in both the language and the subject of marketing being taught;

 

 ·      -        teaching topical marketing strategies – the curriculum is constantly complemented and the very new approaches are discussed at least at the rudimentary level, e.g.:

  • o   branded entertainment;
  • o   buzz marketing;
  • o   advergaming;
  • o   search engine marketing;
  • o   public relations using the power of social media;
  • o   mobile marketing;

 

         -        incorporating multimedia into the teaching process, particularly the following tools:

  • o   animations based on the marketing texts and concepts;
  • o   podcasts and parts of audio-books;
  • o   video sequences teaching marketing bits;
  • o   multimedia software programme (IMC; Segmentation, Marketing and the Marketing Mix);
  • o   vocabulary software;
  • o   virtual visits of real world experts in lectures via SKYPE;
  • o   shooting video sequences of students’ performances using a video camera followed by team/group analyses;

o    

  • ·          -        collaborative approach to creating an English-German-Czech marketing dictionary in Google Docs – in harmony with the requirements of the management of the Faculty of Social Studies of the VŠFS, almost 20 teachers have been working since January 2011 in the sharable and editable environment of Google Docs simultaneously extending and editing one document in the form of a spreadsheet. Currently, this has almost 1850 entries excerpted from professional marketing texts, with a special focus on printed materials not older than three years.

These few examples reflect the strong desire of the Department of Languages of the VŠFS’s management and lecturers to adapt quickly to the fast moving changes in the world of IMC, marketing, PR, and other related disciplines. Due to the fact that all the materials have been digitised, it enables convenient and rapid data warehousing as well as sharing and updating. We can transform the curriculum quickly and we help our students to master different marketing concepts more efficiently. Apart from conveying the meaning, one of the biggest advantages of using multimedia is to keep students motivated and interested in learning.

The above-mentioned teaching methods and general approach proved beneficial and were highly appreciated by the Belgian students who spent a week at the Spring School 2010 in Prague as a part of the students’ Erasmus exchange programme. In the course of one week, the students studied ‘Communications in PR’ on a project basis. At one of these lectures, students had a unique chance to ask Mr. Bob Little, a UK PR expert, questions via SKYPE.


 

Is Marketing Communications Teaching Revolutionary?

Teaching the concept of Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) in a truly modern and effective way requires the coordination and integration of many different tools, approaches and sources within the particular college or university. However, if there is something which really matters, then it is the valid and regularly updated content. In spite of that, it can easily happen that the content can become obsolete within a relatively very short period. Also, it is one of the fundamental roles of teaching professional English in the field of study of Marketing Communications to provide accurate terminology reflecting the latest developments in IMC.

In conclusion, it is obvious that the speed of change in IMC is similar to any other field of study. It is in the interests of all lecturers to be the ones who have the chance to manage the change rather than be dragged by it. Teaching marketing topics at VŠFS can be considered ‘revolutionary’ to a certain extent and this university would like to be the trendsetter in this respect. However, if there is closer collaboration with other universities, professional marketing institutions and companies, it will benefit the students studying this very interesting, highly demanding, and increasingly popular discipline.

 

 Animated PowerPoint presentations mapping professional texts:

 

Fig. 1: Professional English in Use – Marketing – Unit 03 – SWOT Analysis; Author's source 

 Fig. 2: Professional English in Use – Marketing – Unit 08 – Research 1; Author's source

 

Fig. 3: Professional English in Use – Marketing – Unit 40 – Buzz marketing; Author's source

 

Resources:

1. LITTLE, Bob. Bob Little Press & Public Relations [online]. April 2 2011 [cit. 2011-05-05]. Bob's blog. Available from WWW: http://www.hotdigits.co.uk/cgi-bin/diary8/journal?user=bob .

2. European Commission - Language Teaching - Content ... [online]. 2008, 28 February 2008 [cit. 2011-05-05]. European Commission Multiligualism. Available from WWW: 2. http://ec.europa.eu/education/languages/language-teaching/doc236_en.htm .

 
Go to top