Who is it for?
Whether you want to break into marketing, start your own business, take over your family’s company, or just learn more about how to innovate new products and services, and create buzz and excitement around them, this postgraduate strategic marketing course is right for you.
This strategic marketing master's course is specifically tailored for students with little or no prior marketing experience and study background.
It will qualify you to get your first professional marketing position, even if you have studied fine arts, medicine, business, or physics before. If you are looking for a degree that deepens your advanced marketing knowledge, please take a look at our other MSc courses or our MBA programmes.
Some people equate marketing with advertising. Not you. You know that marketing is a multi-faceted business process involving creativity and innovation alongside analytical and strategic skills.
The MSc in Marketing Strategy and Innovation postgraduate programme gives you a sound understanding of the principles and state-of-the art practices of marketing.
You will acquire the latest knowledge on market research, customer analysis, innovation and design, brand management, advertising, digital and social media marketing, fashion brand management, storytelling, sponsoring, and many other current marketing topics.
Your lecturers bring these topics to life through interactive classes, case discussions, lectures with leading marketers, and hands-on innovation and communication tasks. You will, for example:
- work with a London start-up company on a marketing plan for the introduction of a new product to the UK market
- develop your own business idea, business model, and communication strategy and pitch it to a jury of London marketers and investors
- compete against classmates in a strategy simulation game where you experience how your marketing decisions would play out in the real world
- personally meet some of London’s finest senior marketers, from companies such as Unilever, Visa, Interbrand, and Unruly.
Ask a student
Chat to one of our MSc in Marketing Strategy & Innovation students now and have them answer your questions on everything from application to student life.
The degree is aimed at equipping you with the most rigorous theoretical and practical knowledge on professional marketing practice, with the quantitative and qualitative analytical skills required to make complex marketing decisions, and with the soft skills to influence people and organisations through creativity, persistence, team-working, communication skills, leadership, and initiative.
Marketing is a fast-moving field. Therefore, each module is constantly updated to include the latest digital and analogue technologies (some of them developed by our very own lecturers) which enables you to devise path-breaking products and persuasive communication strategies in fast-changing social environments.
What will you learn
- Develop your understanding of up-to-date tools and tricks of leading marketing strategists, as well as of the newest emerging theories and approaches.
- Directly apply what you have learned in class to real marketing problems.
When you graduate you will be able to contribute right away to marketing practice in leading organisations.
- You will also have the knowledge and skill to get audiences excited about your own start-up idea.
All of our MSc courses start with two compulsory induction weeks which include relevant refresher courses, an introduction to the careers services and the annual careers fair.
The aim of this module is to provide you with a sound understanding of the principles of marketing. In a nutshell, understanding marketing comes down to understanding your customers.
This module assumes no previous knowledge of marketing and will give you an overview of the basic marketing planning process including segmentation, branding, pricing, distribution, and promotion. These concepts are brought to life though interactive lectures and industry guest speakers.
Marketing Strategy and Practice
The objective of the module is to enhance skills in strategic thinking in marketing and developing and presenting marketing plans.
This will specifically require forming objectives, situation (SWOT) analysis, market research and forecasting, target market selection, market mix strategy formation, marketing tactics development, and control procedure formulation.
In addition, you will practically apply marketing theory. You will take part in a business simulation. In this simulated world, you and your team have been recruited as Marketing Managers for a division of a large diversified firm.
Marketing strategy is your main area of responsibility, but you will also be concerned with financial matters, production planning, and R&D. You will have to integrate these various dimensions of business strategy into a long-term perspective in order to gain an edge on the competition.
At the end, we can see how your decisions have affected your market share, your profitability, and your share price.
Creativity. Innovation. Design
Since design thinking is the new mantra in organisations, this module equips you with the conceptual and practical skills to enhance opportunity spotting and problem solving through creativity techniques, innovation processes and design thinking. Design is all about making the product or service you deliver useful, usable, efficient, effective and desirable.
Essentials of Accounting and Finance
Regardless of your eventual job title or function, a sound understanding of monetary flows and financials within an organisation is important. This module provides an overview of the core principles of financial reporting and managerial accounting. There will be an emphasis on how financial statements are compiled and how they should be interpreted. In addition, you will also get a flavour of key areas for consideration when making investment decisions.
This module introduces you to the techniques and processes of understanding markets and gaining consumer insights. The focus of this module will be on both quantitative, qualitative and interpretative approaches to studying markets and consumers and their value for innovations and marketing strategy.
This module also provides methodological tools that are fundamental to craft and management of research projects based on empirical (quantitative or qualitative) data.
You will learn about traditional quantitative methods, such as surveys and field experiments, and more qualitative approaches, such as ethnography, interviews, focus groups, etc.
The aim is to enable you to evaluate and buy market research from clients, and be able to understand and use research output for solving marketing problems.
Analytical Methods for Marketing
This module introduces some principal quantitative methods for analysing data related to various aspects of running a business. In many instances, the application of quantitative methods may improve the quality of business decisions by grounding those decisions in analyses of available data rather than the gut feelings or preferences of decision makers.
The goal of the module is to familiarise students with the fundamental analytical methods for answering marketing research questions. The module involves developing research questions, analysing data and drawing inferences with a view to making better marketing decisions.
This module will introduce students to several key descriptive and inferential statistical methods and provide a range of tools necessary to analyse data within the context of marketing-related questions.
Via a series of lectures, case studies and in-class activities, you will be introduced to foundational psychological, sociological and cultural theories to understand behaviour of individuals in the market. The goal is to help you understand how to segment and target your market, and then, how to relate and foster a desirable behaviour from your customers.
The coursework of this module is integrated with the modules Digital Marketing and Social Media as well as Brand Management and Communication Strategies. This integrated project gives you the unique opportunity to develop and pitch a customer analysis, brand strategy, and advertising campaign across all media to a group of experienced London marketers and investors.
Brand Management and Communication Strategies
When you work as a marketer, your "brand" will be the focal point of all your thoughts and actions. Why? Because the brand gives the entire organisation purpose and direction.
The brand guides your company’s product and pricing decisions, store designs, advertising narratives, and many other important decisions. This module introduces you to the key branding theories and branding models that are used in practice. You will learn how to create, reposition, and extend a brand, and how to advertise it effectively to your target audiences.
Digital Marketing and Social Media
In practice, digital marketing often revolves around driving more traffic to a company’s pages, no matter what. However, social media and viral marketing, search engine marketing, e-mail marketing, banner advertisements, or pay-per-click (to name just a few instruments) are not the same as traditional media such as print and television, where such a focus on „more traffic“ made sense. Digital marketing is different, and much more powerful. It is a two-way street, where marketers interact with consumers, select traffic rather than accumulate it, and thus build consumer-brand relationships of different kinds. This module teaches you a range of state-of-the art tools and theories of how to use social media effectively to achieve your branding and communication goals
All students complete two core modules (Product Innovation Management and Technology and Marketing) in term three.
Product Innovation Management
This module teaches you how to continuously develop new and improved products in order to lead the market. Because product development is a risky business and most new products fail, you will learn how to continuously innovate and manage product development processes.
Through the use of practical exercises you will gain a deep understanding of the most effective ways to develop new product ideas, to garner market reactions to your ideas, and choose the right strategies to take new products to the market. Studying this module will not prevent you from eventually marketing a failing innovation, but increase your chances of becoming a successful innovator.
Technology and Marketing: Engaging the Future
How does the marketing of technology shape the future world we will be living in? When will drones be delivering your Amazon orders? Will the Uber of tomorrow be a driverless car? Have you thought about having your childhood pet cloned, but with pink fur? Will you be touring your new house as augmented reality before you build it? Will a robot butler be serving you breakfast in bed? Technological advancement is opening astounding prospects for the future and marketers are challenged to catch up.
This module teaches key theories to understand what technology is, and introduces you to the latest technological developments as opportunities to create, communicate, and deliver value to consumers. The module also addresses the ethical, societal implications of new technologies and what they mean for marketers.
You can then choose to take either a Business Research Project or three electives.
Business Research Project
The Business Research Project offers an opportunity to develop your expertise and become an expert on a marketing topic of your choice.
You can, for example, conduct an independent academic research study in the subject field of your supervising Professor (e.g. running a consumer psychology experiment, collecting interview data for a consumer culture study, running a survey study on a marketing management topic).
This is the best route if you are playing with the idea of becoming an academic, but also if your goal is to work with data.
You can also develop a marketing research study with a company that faces a practical marketing problem. Our alumni office can help you open doors to get you in touch with a company to collaborate with.
You can use this format to build relationships with an organisation you might want to work for. It gets you a foot in the door and can lead to permanent employment once you have completed the MSc.
The electives route allows you to depend your knowledge in areas that you are particularly interested in. You can choose from a broad range of national and international modules across our MSc programs, select any of the marketing elective below, or study all three modules of our two pathways.
Pathway 1: Fashion & Luxury Marketing
- Fashion Brand Management
- Storytelling for Business
- International Module: Luxury Marketing taught in Monaco
Pathway 2: Retail & Relationship Marketing
- Retail Supply Chain Management
- Personal Selling
- International Module: Managing Customer Relationships (with Wharton simulation) taught in Vienna
Please note that an elective may not be offered if it is not selected by a minimum number of students. Please also note that international electives may be taught in alternate locations, depending on availability.
Students will be assessed through a range of different methods. Most courses have both an exam and a coursework assessment component.
Students conduct the course work with study groups. Group members learn from assessing each other through peer assessment, mirroring evaluation mechanisms in organisations.
Term dates 2021/22
Course timetables are normally available from July and can be accessed from our timetabling pages. These pages also provide timetables for the current academic year, though this information should be viewed as indicative and details may vary from year to year.
Please note that all academic timetables are subject to change.
The teaching staff on the MSc in Marketing Strategy and Innovation programme are leading researchers in their fields who create new knowledge and tools for ever more effective marketing. Many academics also look back at years of practical industry experience. Most courses are also enriched through guest lectures of leading London marketers, some of which have contributed to running the world’s most iconic brands.
In the highly interactive lectures of the Cass MSc in Marketing, Strategy & Innovation programme you will tap into this wealth of knowledge and experience, and thus build your own skill as a marketer.
Module Leaders include:
- Dr Oguz A. Acar (Course Director)- Studies how the potential of crowd-based digital models – such as crowdsourcing, crowdfunding and online communities – can be better harnessed for marketing, innovation, entrepreneurship and scientific progress.
- Professor Fleura Bardhi- Researches consumer behaviour and culture from a sociological perspective. Expert in the sharing economy, travel and mobilities, digital consumption, global brands and consumers.
- Daniela Cristian - Explores hedonic experiences, particularly their behavioural consequences, as well as consumer decision-making and prosocial behaviour.
- Dr Sabrina Gottschalk- Studies consumer-to-consumer interaction, in particular online and offline word-of-mouth, from a consumer behaviour perspective.
- Dr Jay Jung- Studies what determines the reaction of capital market participants, such as investors and equity analysts, to accounting and financial information contained in corporate disclosures.
- Dr Marius Luedicke - Cultural branding expert who studies cultural tensions in consumer society and advises managers on how to turn these tensions into branding opportunities.
- Dr Irene Scopelliti- Studies causes and consequences of decision making mistakes.
- Dr Janina Steinmetz- Examines the social aspects of consumer motivation, self-control, and impression management by using experiments and field studies.
- Dr Ruben van Werven - Interested in entrepreneurship, both in startup and corporate environments.
- Dr Wanqing Zhang - Specialises in decision choice modeling and conducts empirical marketing research in the area of new product introduction, mobile and digital marketing, social media, big data and service marketing.
- Dr Joyce Jingshi Liu - Studies antecedents and consequences of consumers’ interaction with products, particularly how these interactions relate to consumers’ self-concept, self-control, and wellbeing.
Marketing is a fast moving field. Therefore, the skills and knowledge that you will acquire on the MSc in Marketing Strategy and Innovation course are continuously updated to include the latest theoretical developments (some of them authored by our very own lecturers) and the newest practical developments.
Regular guest speakers in the program include:
- Jon Goldstone - A former Marketing VP at PepsiCo and Unilever who now works as a global brand consultant at the brandgym. Expert in brand strategy, campaign development and innovation.
- Dr Thomas Robinson - Studies issues of technology and temporality in consumer behaviour drawing on philosophical and anthropological methods.
- Prosper Williams - Studies the issues of disruptive technology, its impact on business and society, and the role business leaders play in mitigating the impact of technology on our broader environmental and social systems.
How to apply
We only accept online applications.
Documents required for decision-making
- Transcript/interim transcript
- Current module list if still studying
- Personal statement - this should be around 500 words in length and answer the following:
- Why have you selected this course? What are your motivating factors?
- What are your areas of interest within the course?
- What contributions do you feel you can make to the course?
- How do you see the course affecting your career plans?
Documents which may follow at a later date
- English language test result if applicable
- Two references, one of which MUST be an academic reference
- For a successful application to receive an unconditional status all documents must be verified, so an original or certified copy of the degree transcript must be uploaded to the application form or e-mailed to the relevant Admissions Officer upon request
We cannot comment on individual eligibility before you apply and we can only process your application once it is fully complete, with all requested information received.
Unfortunately, as a result of the evolving situation regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, we can only offer online appointments to discuss your application. To book one, please get in touch with the relevant Admission Officer
Please note; these are subject to availability.
Terms and conditions
Students applying to study at Cass Business School are subject to City, University of London's terms and conditions.
- A UK upper second class degree or above, or the equivalent from an overseas institution.
- We accept applications from all academic backgrounds
- Work experience is not a requirement of this course.
We do not require a GMAT or GRE for this course but if you have already taken the test we would advise you to upload a copy of your result to your online application form.
- This course is designed as a conversion course for students with little or no marketing education and experience
- If you have studied some marketing a while ago, or have worked in a junior marketing position, taking this course will help you move ahead.
- If you have specialised in marketing during your Undergrad studies, you are welcome to study this degree, but please be aware that some (if not most) contents may look familiar.
- If you have worked in strategic marketing positions for more than three years, please take a look at our MBA programme, which will be more suitable.
- The MSc in Marketing Strategy & Innovation is not a highly quantitative course as it is open to graduates from a variety of disciplines, but it still teaches some maths and statistics. If you are unsure of your quantitative skills, please use the recommendations in the Course director's welcome letter to catch up on the basics.
Applicants selected by the Admissions Panel may be invited to an online interview. We will contact all selected applicants with full instructions after the Admissions Panel has made an initial assessment of your application.
We strongly advise you to provide us with your own personal email address when applying to avoid missing interview deadlines.
English language requirements
If you have been studying in the UK for the last three years it is unlikely that you will have to take the IELTS test
If you have studied a 2+2 degree with just two years in the UK you will be required to provide IELTS results and possibly to resit the tests to meet our requirements.
- The required IELTS level is an average of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in all elements.
Fees in each subsequent year of study (where applicable) will be subject to an annual increase of 2%. We will confirm any change to the annual tuition fee to you in writing prior to you commencing each subsequent year of study (where applicable).
Deposit: £2,000 (usually paid within 1 month of receiving offer and non-refundable unless conditions of offer are not met)
First installment: Half fees less deposit (payable during on-line registration which should be completed at least 5 days before the start of the induction period)
Second installment: Half fees (paid in January following start of course)
We are committed to not only educate you as an excellent marketer, but also as a responsible leader.
This ethos pervades the MSc in Marketing Strategy and Innovation postgraduate course. Exploring topics such as Corporate Social Responsibility, for example, gives you an 'outside in' perspective, enabling you to reflect on the wider social implications of your employability of Cass students, the applicable vocational skills of the course and the support Cass students benefit from.
Class of 2019 profile
Recent graduates have secured positions in companies including:
- Junior Digital Manager - Beiersdorf
- Marketing Strategy Trainee - Estee Lauder Companies
- Banking and Financial Services Marketing Manager - BT
- Business Development Manager - Papercup
- Campaign Coordinator - Pulse Advertising
- Advisory Associate - PWC
- SEO Associate - Merkle Periscopix
- Marketing Manager - Beets&Roots
Where they are working now
- UK: 51%
- EU/ EEA: 11%
- Other European: 3%
- Africa and Middle East: 5%
- Asia: 30%
Data provided from alumni who completed the annual destination data survey 2017/18