Marketing strategy as a game

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Researchers at Carlos III University of Madrid (UC3M) have developed an international marketing simulation game called QUANTUM, in which the students compete as marketing directors for a large company.

This educational software tool allows users to assimilate basic concepts of decision-making and strategic marketing management, and to develop practical skills in the management of businesses that operate in international markets. The competition takes place among companies that are managed by teams of students operating in the same sector in different countries, using analytical models derived from academic research. The academic rigor and added entertainment motivate the students in this type of competition, according to its creators, Professors Mercedes Esteban Bravo, Nora Lado Cousté and José Manuel Vidal Sanz, of the Commercialization and Market Research area of the Economics Department at UC3M.

These professors point out that this is an ideal tool for a profession such as marketing, which is developing rapidly as it adapts to the dynamics of international networks and powerful technological innovations. In addition, this instrument adapts well to e-learning programs. The method can be used by undergraduate and graduate students, as well as by executives, just by determining and then adapting the degree of difficulty to be used. Moreover, it works in both Spanish and English so that it can be used in bilingual degree programs.

QUANTUM is proprietary software that belongs to its three authors, although since its gestation in 2007 it has been used as freeware in the Business Administration degree programs, as well as in various UC3M graduate degree programs.

As its developers state, “we made it to help our undergraduate and graduate students integrate theory and practice, and to make learning a game rather than a burden for them”. The success of the method has been so great that many other universities and business schools, both national and international, have shown interest in the game and are applying it to their educational programs.