Laura “Rudy” Rudolphi, Crosby MBA ’09, did not know exactly what career she wanted to pursue when she entered the Crosby MBA program. She always had an interest in statistics, and found classes such as Database Marketing to be entertaining and informative. “The [Crosby MBA] program allowed me to develop a strong ability to think critically,” says Laura, who found herself taking an indirect path to a career in analytics.
The core analytical skills she acquired led to her current role as Associate Director of Analysis at dunnhumbyUSA in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she is challenged to develop special marketing campaigns and models not only to target customers but also to increase their loyalty to the brand.
Growing customer loyalty is one application of data analysis that employers such as dunnhumby use daily in order to achieve success. This UK-based customer science company focuses on increasing and sustaining this customer loyalty for its clients through campaign creations and model building. They expanded operations to the U.S in 2003 through a joint venture with The Kroger Company to better analyze customer rewards card data in order to personalize and enhance the consumer’s shopping experience.
The Crosby program remains innovative and cutting-edge by providing students with the opportunity to concentrate in the growing field of Marketing Analytics. In addition, the curriculum includes several required courses in business analytics, such as Data Analysis for Managers and Managerial Analytics. From working with basic data sets to building complex prediction models, the professors challenge each and every student to explore their critical thinking ability. Today’s companies often have an abundance of data, but they are not always able to turn it into useful, quality information. Marketing analytics seeks to explore databases and effectively utilize them through predictive modeling and other tools in order to make important marketing strategies, tasks, and decisions. Professors use a “hands-on” approach to learning through the use of programs such as SAS. “What I learned from my exposure to SAS during my MBA was invaluable,” says Laura.
As business continues to evolve, the field of marketing analytics will continue to play a major role in the decision-making process. Students with a passion for exploring and discovering patterns in data should consider the career possibilities in this field. The Crosby MBA program provides students with the opportunity to gain a valuable, experiential learning experience through its Marketing Analytics concentration. “Hiring managers want to see candidates with training who can analyze data and not just crunch numbers,” states Laura, “and the Crosby program helps prepare students for this critical thinking mindset.”