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Marketing in action

Qualification dates
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Whether you are interested in a career in marketing or merely curious about how marketing works, this module provides an opportunity to explore marketing practice in action. The module is built around marketing communications as a fundamental marketing practice and is informed by insights from practitioners. You’ll learn how marketing is applied in different contexts, how to keep pace with marketing trends and emerging practices and appreciate the role of marketing research. You’ll also examine social and environmental sustainability, enhance your ethical awareness and analysis skills, explore stakeholder marketing and navigate the plethora of marketing evaluation measures.

What you will study

Block 1 explores the topic of marketing communications. This is a dynamic area of marketing and you'll be introduced to the key drivers and trends in the field and be provided with an overview of the marketing communications mix. The material then proceeds to encourage you to explore the key elements needed to develop an effective marketing communications campaign. You'll examine how communications theory and branding help inform the messaging and media strategy for a campaign. With the rise of digital marketing, you'll explore its role when developing an integrated marketing communications mix. Finally, you'll consider the importance of creativity in the execution of a marketing communications campaign.

Block 2 immerses you in a range of different contexts to explore the nuances of marketing theory and practice. From exploring the differences for marketers operating in the areas of services, B2B and SMEs within the commercial sector, you'll expand your appreciation of the role of marketing to public sector, charities and non-profit organisations. This includes coverage of strategic and operational aspects of social marketing. You'll look at a range of wider social and consumer trends that are impacting all marketing practice, such as big data, AI, blockchain and authenticity. The block concludes by exploring the marketing research process, and the methods of data collection and analysis employed by marketers when developing new campaigns.

Block 3 takes a wider perspective, considering a number of issues that directly and indirectly inform marketing practice. Topics covered include sustainability and marketing ethics; stakeholder marketing; and finally evaluating marketing communications campaigns, considering variations in evaluation between marketing contexts. These topics involve assessing an organisation's activities and their impact on society, the environment, stakeholders and the organisation's performance.

Entry requirements

This is an OU level 3 module. OU level 3 modules build on study skills and subject knowledge acquired from studies at OU levels 1 and 2. They are intended only for students who have recent experience of higher education in a related subject, preferably at the OU.

Although there are no formal entry requirements and the module is open entry, we strongly recommend that you are suitably prepared for study at this level and have some familiarity with basic business and marketing concepts. Shaping business opportunities (B207) would be ideal preparation. 

If you have any doubt about the suitability of the module, please speak to an adviser.

What's included

You'll have access to a module website, which includes:

  • a week-by-week study planner
  • course-specific module materials
  • audio and video content
  • assignment details and submission section
  • online tutorial access
  • OpenStudio
  • a collaborative wiki

Computing requirements

You'll need a desktop or laptop computer with an up-to-date version of 64-bit Windows 10 (note that Windows 7 is no longer supported) or macOS and broadband internet access.

To join in spoken conversations in tutorials we recommend a wired headset (headphones/earphones with a built-in microphone).

Our module websites comply with web standards and any modern browser is suitable for most activities.

Our OU Study mobile App will operate on all current, supported, versions of Android and iOS. It's not available on Kindle.

It's also possible to access some module materials on a mobile phone, tablet device or Chromebook, however, as you may be asked to install additional software or use certain applications, you'll also require a desktop or laptop as described above.

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

The teaching and learning strategy is designed to provide an integrated, incremental and tutor- and peer-supported experience. The first assignment will include a small group assessed collaborative activity, which will contribute to 50% of the marks for this assignment. The remainder and the other assessments will be conducted and assessed individually. The assessments are integrative and build incrementally, with each assessment paving the way for and underpinning the next. This should help you tackle each successive assessment, facilitate and integrate your learning, enable you to benefit from your tutor’s feedback and assist you in successfully progressing through the module.

A series of online tutorials will be offered. If conditions permit, we will also offer two face-to-face day schools in a range of locations students can travel to, though we cannot guarantee these will be able to take place or availability close to where you live. While you’re not obliged to attend any of these learning events, you are strongly encouraged to take part.

Assessment

The assessment details for this module can be found in the facts box above.

You must use the online eTMA system to submit your tutor marked assignments (TMAs).

If you have a disability

The OU strives to make all aspects of study accessible to everyone and this Accessibility Statement outlines what studying B328 involves. You should use this information to inform your study preparations and any discussions with us about how we can meet your needs.

Future availability

Marketing in action (B328) starts once a year – in April. This page describes the module that will start in April 2022. We expect it to start for the last time in April 2029.

Course work includes:

2 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
End-of-module assessment
No residential school