Strategic Marketing in Creative Industries

Course Number 1914

Professor Anita Elberse
Fall; Q1Q2; 3 credits
28 Sessions

Career Focus

The term "creative industries" encompasses film, television, music, publishing, video games, the performing arts, sports, fashion, advertising, and other areas within entertainment and media - all industries that supply goods that are commonly associated with artistic, cultural, or entertainment value.

The course is primarily designed for students who are pursuing a career in the entertainment, media, and sports sectors, or who are planning to work in companies that advise or support those sectors. It may also be interesting for students seeking to advance their knowledge of strategy and marketing in the context of a challenging, rapidly changing, and fun environment.

Educational Objectives

The course starts with an examination of the properties that define the creative industries, and how those properties together introduce a unique set of challenges and opportunities for managers. Subsequent modules explore:

  1. How can entertainment businesses best allocate resources across a portfolio of projects and for one project over time? For example, does it pay to pursue a "blockbuster" strategy?
  2. How can entertainment businesses best approach the management and marketing of creative talent? In particular, how should companies invest in and capture value from "superstars" and the teams to which they belong?
  3. How are digital technologies changing the creative industries? For instance, how are businesses affected by - and how can they benefit from - the rise of online channels?

The course ends with an examination of firms that fall outside the core creative industries but that seemingly face similar challenges or opportunities.

Cases focus on established and emerging firms, products, and personalities in media, sports, and other entertainment industries. Examples include Jay-Z's Decoded, NBCUniversal, Grand Central Publishing, Octone Records, FC Barcelona, Manchester United's Sir Alex Ferguson, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, Shonda Rhimes' ShondaLand, Maria Sharapova, LeBron James, The Metropolitan Opera, Hulu, Major League Baseball, the NFL, Spotify, and nightlife establishment Marquee.

Course Content and Organization

The course consists of 28 sessions, and includes a brief final project. Grading is based on class participation (50%) and the final project (50%).