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Marketing Areas of Emphasis

One Major: Three Areas of Emphasis

All WVU marketing majors must take 27 credits in marketing course work. There are five required courses that all marketing majors must take. Following this, marketing majors have the option of focusing their studies in one of three areas of emphasis. The chosen area of emphasis is listed on the collegiate transcript. These areas provide majors an opportunity to concentrate their studies to better prepare for a career in this area. Students should consult with their academic advisor which area of emphasis complements their career interests. The three areas of emphasis include:

Professional Sales


Every company has a salesperson, even if it is the company owner. As a famous salesperson and national motivational speaker, Zig Ziglar, once said, "Nothing happens until someone sells something." As a salesperson, you are in the enviable position to make something happen. The best part of a career in sales is that it is undefined. It is hard to describe your typical day as a salesperson because every day is different. One day you are on the Internet researching prospective clients and, along the way, learning a great deal about a company and, perhaps, a new industry. The next few days may be spent calling these prospective clients and then an entire week may be in face-to-face sales calls. On other days, you are writing up sales-call reports and preparing proposals for clients. Some sales positions allow you to work out of your home office, others require traveling, and still others will allow you to do both. The WVU professional sales track offers course work in personal selling, sales management and selling with digital media.

Digital Marketing Promotions

Opportunities are growing in the field of digital marketing promotions. Individuals with a high level of creativity and strong promotion skills, have strong market value. It is also critically important to be comfortable with data and to execute promotional programs in the context of well-conceived business strategy. Marketing majors desiring to work in the field of marketing promotions must have the capabilities to address:

  • Decreasing promotions impact and credibility: The growing quantity of promotions make it increasingly more difficult for a single marketing promotion to have a noteworthy effect.
  • An explosion of data: The cost of storing and retrieving names, sales data and information from databases significantly declined leading to an explosion of data available to the marketer. Savvy markets must have the know-how to utilize this data.
  • Increasing audience fragmentation: Companies use new technologies and computers to target specialized audiences based on factors such as ethnic background or place of residence.
  • The Digital Marketing Promotions area of interest prepares students with the knowledge and skills necessary to compete in today’s world.

Sustainable Pathways to Marketing

Perhaps the biggest "hot button" issue confronting marketing is sustainability. The sustainability marketing orientation is a consumer marketing focus with an emphasis on integrating sustainability principles into both marketing theory and the practical decision making of marketing managers. This involves analysis of socio-environmental priorities to complement conventional consumer research; an integration of social, ethical and environmental values into marketing strategy development; a new consumer-oriented sustainability marketing mix to replace the outmoded and producer-oriented '4 Ps'; and finally an analysis of how marketing can go beyond responding to social change to contribute to a transformation to a more sustainable society. This track focuses its coursework on these topics.