Skip to main content

Study information

Marketing Communications: Strategies and Applications

Module titleMarketing Communications: Strategies and Applications
Module codeBEM2025
Academic year2024/5
Module staff

Dr Jingqi Qiu (Convenor)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks


Number students taking module (anticipated)


Module description

This module introduces you to the fundamental aspects and tools of Marketing Communications. The module covers the theoretical concepts and nature of marketing communications and its application in practice developing integrated marketing communications (IMC) strategies and plans. The syllabus provides an understanding of both above and below-the-line promotion, investigating how they are used to communicate with customers and other stakeholders.  It also explains how the concept of product and brand management can enable organisations to deliver customer value. In respect of the range of marketing communications tools, you will be encouraged to take a critical perspective on Integrated Marketing Communications, transforming your learning to address advertising, (including creative appeals), public relations, sales promotion, direct marketing and digital marketing with emphasis on how tools may be synthesized. New digital media development and deployment are considered. The module also delves into the current issues, controversies and ethical issues involved in the practice of marketing communications. The practical aspects of the module will enable you to gain useful skills that may be applied directly in future careers.

Additional Information:


With the increase in international trade and subsequent consumer access to international brands, you will address the complexity of designing and implementing international campaigns. You will appreciate different culture barriers, which render the adaptation of communication messages, to ensure that message is clear and appropriate for a given culture. You will assess numerous practical examples where insufficient market research resulted in messages being offensive for a specific culture.


You are given practical problems to address in your essays, which equip you with critical and analytical thinking skills. Also, by working in an individual report, you will develop your skills in marketing analysis, problem solving, and writing reports.

Ethics and Corporate Responsibility

This module engages with ethics by addressing topics such as deceptive advertising, the process of advertising self-regulation and targeting of marketing communications toward vulnerable groups. You will be acquainted with the regulation of unfair business practices and the major areas where the unfairness doctrine is applied. Through practical examples, you will appreciate the ethical issues associated with communications, and the interrelations with media, culture and society.

Research in Teaching

The distinctive feature of the module is that it draws on expertise from multiple disciplines. The module is informed by current research and insights from marketing, communications, consumer behaviour, and brand management when establishing its scope. In doing so, the module affords the Marketing Group in Management Department at Exeter Business School considerable opportunities to integrate their own research with teaching and you receive the benefit of this, subject to the learning objectives being met.

Module aims - intentions of the module

This module aims to offer you an insight into how marketing communications models and concepts may be applied in practical business scenarios. The module places an emphasis on examples and cases, many with an international perspective, and seeks to offer you practical skills commensurate with the objectives of the Chartered Institute of Marketing. You will study how buyer behaviour and theories of communication influence the choice of communications tools for business, and how setting communication objectives, budgeting, and the selection of media all play a pivotal role in practice.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. demonstrate in-depth understanding of marketing communications theory and concepts and related literature examining different elements of promotion mix
  • 2. demonstrate a critical appreciation of marketing communications tools and understand how to integrate the various tools to inform B2C campaign planning
  • 3. evaluate communication campaigns according to given creative objectives

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 4. demonstrate the ability to critically evaluate concepts, theories and practice
  • 5. demonstrate strong skills of intellectual inquiry and research for resolving communication problems

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 6. demonstrate effective independent study.
  • 7. present and communicate creative ideas in an authoritative and professional manner.

Syllabus plan

Fundamentals of Marketing Communications

  • Overview of Marketing Communications
  • Branding and the role of Marketing Communications
  • Marketing Communications – Strategies and Planning, Objectives and Positioning
  • The Communications Process and Consumer Behaviour

Marketing Communications Tools

  • Advertising Management
  • Use of Creative Appeal in Communication
  • Social Media
  • Endorsement, Public Relations and Sponsorship

Professional Applications of Marketing Communications

  • Integrated Marketing Communications
  • International Marketing Communications
  • Ethics of Marketing Communications

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Learning and Teaching Activities20Lectures (10 x 2 hours)
Learning and Teaching Activities5Workshops and Webinars (4 x 1 hour)
Guided Independent Study125Reading, preparation for classes and assessments

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Group Discussion10 minutes, in Workshops and Webinars2, 3, 7Verbal
Practitioner Insights/Case studies40 minutes, in Workshops and Webinars1-7Verbal

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Individual Report 1401,500 words2-7Written Feedback
Individual Report 2602000 words1-7Written Feedback

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Individual Report 1 (40%)Individual Report 1 (40%) 1500 words2-7Referral/deferral period
Individual Report 2 (60%)Individual Report 2 (60%) 2000 words1-7Referral/deferral period

Re-assessment notes

Deferral – if you have been deferred for any assessment you will be expected to submit the relevant assessment. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 40%) you will be expected to submit the relevant assessment. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of referral will be capped at 40%.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Fill, C. (2019). Marketing communications: brands, experiences and participation (6th ed.). Harlow: Pearson

Shimp, T. and Andrews, J. C. (2018) Advertising promotion and other aspects of integrated marketing communications. Cengage Learning.

Fill, C. (2016). Marketing communications: discoveries, creation and conversations (7th ed.). Harlow: Pearson. Available as an E-Resource

Fill, C. (2009) Marketing Communications: Interactivity, Communities and Content, 5th ed. London: Prentice Hall.

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources


Indicative learning resources - Other resources


Key words search

Marketing Communications, Advertising, Promotion Mix

Credit value15
Module ECTS


Module pre-requisites


Module co-requisites


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date