Converting myriad data into a simple, visual conceptual model is the basis for developing the ability to communicate consumer marketing insights up, down, and across the organization. This enables the marketer to persuade others of his or her analysis and helps with alignment of the broader organization. And while throughout the MBA program, students have been exposed to various models, once students graduate and enter the workforce, they will be expected to convert complex data into usable insight, typically through visual models of their own design. This exercise, then, is designed to help the students transition from users of conceptual models to creators or developers of models.
The ability to create a conceptual model sharpens the abstract thinking required to convert insight about the market, consumers, competitors, or other entities into an understandable model. The detailed teaching note accompanying this exercise guides instructors through the process of eliciting and evaluating students' visual models, and then proposes a simple, complete model that frames many consumer categories surprisingly well. Additionally, there are videos that can be used to help explain the development of a new-to-the-world conceptual model.
This exercise is intended for use in either an undergraduate capstone class or at any point during an MBA, executive MBA, global MBA, or executive education program.