Using BayesiaLab in the Classroom —
Experience of Teaching Marketing Mix Models
Martin Paul Block, Ph.D.
Professor, Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications
Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois
The Master of Science program in Integrated Marketing Communications at Northwestern University consists of 15 courses taken across 15 months. One of the courses is Marketing Mix Modeling which focuses on relating marketing spending variables to a criterion variable, usually sales, for the purpose of effectively planning future marketing activity spending. Preparing appropriate data is major component of the course, as is considering different analytical approaches. The course has been traditionally focused on regression-based techniques, but now also adds Bayesian Belief Networks through the application of BayesiaLab. Students find the software easy to apply as well as solving some the problems found among the regression-based approach. Students use the software to solve cases and in a term project. The use of BayesiaLab opens the door to discussions about causality and interactive managerial applications.