College of Business Mississippi State University

Career Tracks

A marketing degree provides great preparation for future business leadership. Marketing professionals are people-oriented, yet they have a good numbers sense. They are extremely creative, yet at the same time, have good organization skills. At latest count, there are 276 MSU marketing alumni that currently serve as president or CEO of their organization. That's more than any other major.

However, it is rare to start at the top of an organization. You must learn the ropes and gain skills along the way. Marketing graduates generally start their careers in one of seven areas, and often move from one area to another on their way to the top. Look at the descriptions for each track and imagine where you'd like to start.

Field Sales

Do you enjoy working with people to help solve problems? A field sales representative helps firms develop lasting relationships with customers by developing and presenting solutions to the problems customers face. A sales position offers benefits that are hard to match in any other field, including the opportunity for (1) rapid advancement, (2) high compensation, (3) self-development and satisfaction, and (4) independence. Good marketing electives for those choosing the field sales track include: MKT 4113 Personal Selling; MKT 4143 Sales Management; MKT 4613 Services Marketing and TR 4313 Physical Distribution. For additional information, please see Dr. Subhra Chakrabarty.

Retail Management

Do you enjoy informing others about the latest innovations in products and fashions? Retailing and e-tailing (on-line commerce) are fast growing and dynamic, and job opportunities are exceptional. Within retail management there are two choices. Store management positions give you the opportunity to design the display of merchandise and supervise employees to give good customer service. Buyer positions give you the opportunity to select the best merchandise and negotiate the price. Good marketing electives for those choosing the retail management tract include: MKT 3212 Retailing; MKT 4113 Personal Selling; MKT 4613 Services Marketing and TR 4313 Physical Distribution. For additional information, please see Dr. Jason Lueg.

Advertising and Sales Promotion

Ever have a desire to improve the way advertising runs on TV, radio, billboards or print? How about working to manage the rollout of new products and working to improve their perception? The core activities of those in the advertising career track is to take a product and construct advertising and promotional campaigns that get consumers excited about making the product their own. Good marketing electives include: MKT 4123 Advertising; MKT 4213 Internet Marketing; MKT 4113 Personal Selling and MKT 4613 Services Marketing. For additional information, please see Dr. Kevin Shanahan.

Transportation and Logistics

Do you enjoy fast-paced action where quick decision-making is the key to winning? Positions in the transportation and logistics field make sure that goods and services are delivered where they are needed on time, while at the same time holding inventory and delivery costs low. Professionals in this field decide how to ship and where to ship, and opportunities are growing rapidly. Good marketing electives for those choosing the transportation and logistics track include: TR 3323 International Logistics; TR 4233 International Transportation; TR 4313 Physical Distribution; and TR 4333 International Supply Chain Management. For additional information, please see Dr. Jason Lueg.

Product Management

Do you enjoy planning and organizing? Product managers work with designers, engineers and manufacturing people to develop new products and services. Product managers are both strategic and tactical: strategic because they are responsible for positioning, assessing the competition, and thinking about the future; and tactical because they are in the field finding out what is happening on a daily basis. Good marketing electives for those choosing the product management track include: MKT 4123 Advertising; MKT 4213 Internet Marketing; TR 4313 Physical Distribution; and MKT 4613 Services Marketing. For additional information, please see Dr. Joel Collier.

Marketing Research

Are you genuinely curious and like to solve puzzles? Marketing researchers figure out what people want and what drives them to buy. Marketing researchers combine statistics with insight into human behavior to help determine the size of markets and the potential sales of any new innovation. The field is booming with ever-improving data from places like check-out scanners and the Internet. Good marketing electives for those choosing the marketing research track include: MKT 4213 Internet Marketing; MKT 3933 International Marketing; MKT 4123 Advertising, and MKT 4613 Services Marketing. For additional information, please see Dr. Cynthia Webster.

Small Business Entrepreneurship

Do you want to start your own business? There are many small business and franchise operations, especially in the retail and services sector, that are looking for new ownership. The essence of small business success is identifying and serving customers effectively, and that takes well-rounded marketing skills. Running your own business can be both challenging and rewarding. Good marketing electives for those choosing the small business and entrepreneurship track include: MKT 3213 Retailing, MKT 4213 Internet Marketing; MKT 4123 Advertising, and MKT 4613 Services Marketing. For additional information, please see Mr. Mike Goree.