The Markstrat Simulation

April 18th, 2011 by under Uncategorized. No Comments.

This term I’m taking Marketing Strategy. Most of the course work revolves around the Markstrat Simulation. I, along with 3 of my classmates run a company (Firm O) and we sell Sonites and Vodites. What are Sonites and Vodites you ask? Well, I’m still not completely sure, but they are some sort of electronic products with varying frequencies, power levels, etc. We are competing with 4 other firms, trying to earn the highest cumulative contribution margin from our portfolio. Basically, in every decision round, a firm gets to decide on which products to sell, R&D projects to implement, advertising, positioning, sales force and distribution, and segments to target. Of course, there is a budget that has to be maintained, leading to key trade offs and the need for strategic planning. Our team started out in fourth place in terms of market share…and now, after 5 decision rounds (5 years in the Markstrat world), we are still in fourth place. I know, I know….it’s not where we want to be either. It’s frustrating to say the least!

Never have I participated in activity that is so time-consuming, maddening, and interesting all at the same time. I literally feel like simulation could be a full time job. Maybe an internship of some sort, but my point is that it takes up hours upon hours of my time! To hear my professor tell it, this really should not be the case. I’m sure he’s right too- I’m over thinking things and not being efficient. I, along with my  group, are slowly and surely becoming faster and better at making decisions. Last decision round we made some good choices and now have double the marketing budget to work with for the next round-score!!! 1st place here we come! I wonder if all my classmates are as engaged and intrigued by this as I am….might be a marketing geek type of thing…

I’ll be sure to post an update on how we finish up in the competition. Our ranking only accounts for 5% of our grade….but you know how it is- all MBAs want to win!