Specialization in Marketing

The Marketing Specialization is based on HEC Paris’ long-running expertise in this specific field. It provides students with a comprehensive curriculum covering both marketing fundamentals and advanced knowledge of the most up-to-date field developments. It also benefits from a strong involvement from major companies that are world renowned for marketing excellence, such as L’Oréal, Google, Procter & Gamble, Pernod Ricard, Publicis, LVMH, etc.

Marketing specialization key features

Key Features

The specialization aims to enhance students’ analytic and strategic skills, in order to learn how to adapt in a constantly changing environment, integrating both tradition and novelty in terms of media, channels or market studies. Students will be equipped with a strong theoretical foundation thanks to courses taught by world-class researchers, while working alongside experienced professionals and consultants to ensure a ‘hands on’ experience. The combination of theory and practice will promote success upon entry into the job market and throughout graduates’ entire career.

Balance Between Theory and Application

The objective of the program is to equip students with the necessary knowledge and techniques that will enable them to successfully solve a broad set of marketing problems. With this objective in mind, the Marketing faculty is composed both of academics who publish leading research and recognized professionals who bring a wealth of knowledge from real-life cases.

Strong Connection with the Business and Marketing Community

Participants will be given frequent opportunities to gain real “hands-on” experience and to interact with key players from the business world through conferences, workshops, projects, internships and career fairs organized on campus. They will also be given the chance to put their newly acquired knowledge into practice through business cases with well-known companies, offering them an invaluable opportunity to enrich their skills.

Career Outlook

HEC’s Marketing graduates receive multiple job offers and have a 100% employment rate within 6 months. Our specialization in Marketing will also provide a pathway to a successful career beyond the boundaries of marketing in international firms such as consulting, pharmaceutical, regional and national agencies, and NGOs. Such a wide range of career possibilities and fields make this specialization a perfect fit for aspiring brand managers and product developers in today’s fast moving and diverse marketplace.

The Curriculum

The Marketing Specialization is divided in two main phases:

  • the first phase (September-December) is dedicated to the necessary tools and knowledge required to successfully address today’s main marketing challenges
  • the second phase (January-April) aims to provide our students with a strong added value in the areas of their choice thanks to electives on specific sectors; such as luxury, health care or consultancy; or on specific topics for which they may wish to gain a deeper insight.

In addition, students will be immersed in real-life business through hands-on seminars and live case-studies.

The Marketing Specialization’s curriculum is common with HEC’s MSc in Marketing. Both populations are grouped within the same promotion and have access to the same courses.

Core Courses

  • B4B Marketing: Customer Centricity and Value Management 

This course will present you with an initiation about B4B marketing where companies develop ecosystems aimed at selling outcomes for customers. We want to take you beyond the old “4P” (B2C) paradigm and the old “B2B” model designed for individual firms who sought to sell products to customers to a  new world of eco-systemic value co-creation.  

In this course, we will specifically focus on customer centricity as a major challenge for B2B companies and explore value and value management as critical sources of differentiation. This course builds on the "4V” B4B framework (Viewpoints, Value, Vehicles and Voice) that we have been developing at HEC over time through research and interaction with firms. 

  • Business Marketing 

This core class offers a toolkit of marketing analysis methods and frameworks supporting subsequent decision-making. Strategy and strategic thinking being key to practice marketing management, the beginning of the course provides a range of strategic tools necessary to carry out relevant marketing analysis. Then, the course will expose students to strategic and operational marketing basics.  

This course intends to equip students with key analysis tools and framework necessary to set up any marketing strategy and to build any successful marketing plan followed by insightful decision-making.   

  • Consumer Behavior 

Because we are all consumers, it may be tempting to think we know what consumers want and why. But this intuition is wrong. Not only are there substantial differences across consumers, consumers (including ourselves) often do not know why they act the way they do. 

The objective of this course is to help you think differently (and better) about how consumers arrive at judgments and choices and how their choices ultimately affect their well-being. We use insights from economics, psychology, and sociology to better understand and predict consumer behavior. We take the perspective that questions whether consumers are truly rational, optimizing agents and that consumer behavior is primarily based on logical, conscious processes. We then apply these insights and their implications to develop better marketing strategies and tactics. 

  • Data Analytics & Big Data  

With the digital revolution well under way, it’s crucial businesses understand how to measure and assess digital opportunities and outcomes.  Digital analytics offers a range of measurement tools and targeted analyses to help the business world make better decisions. 

This course primarily aims at teaching students how to connect digital data and insight with the business world. 

Students will be taught about the different digital measurement tools, the methods and analyses available today to derive real insight. In addition to gaining a strong understanding of the strategic aspects behind digital analytics, students will also have the opportunity to dive into one of the most used digital analytics tools across the globe today: Google Analytics. 

  • Data Analytics For Marketing 

The course is an application of data analytics to marketing decision problems. Analytics represent a quantitative approach to decision‐making that makes simultaneous use of the (data‐based) tools and methodologies developed by statisticians, operations researchers, and computer scientists. We will explore this approach and its theoretical foundations to acquire analytic skills, to identify the areas where data analytics can add the most value, to select appropriate types of analyses and apply them in a small‐scale, quick‐turnaround but high‐impact fashion to real world marketing problems. 

  • Marketing For a General Manager Perspective 


  • Pricing Strategy 

The objective of the course is to provide participants with the necessary insights, skills and confidence to make superior pricing decisions. Strategic pricing management introduces frameworks, approaches, and ideas to solve the most pressing contemporary pricing problems. 

The course takes a multi-disciplinary approach, combining insights from marketing, economics and psychology. The selection criterion for the content is that all elements should be relevant for contemporary management practice. 

  • Reforming Marketing With a Sustainable Vision 


  • (R)etail Strategies 

As clearly stated in the 2018 Deloitte retail ranking: “It is a transformative time in retail. “Everywhere commerce” has taken root, allowing consumers to shop however, wherever, and whenever they want—whether in stores, online, by mobile, voice activation or click-and-collect. Across the retail industry, disruption of traditional business models has given way to unprecedented and transformative changes, be they online or offline, to better serve more demanding shoppers and define innovative UX. Transformations through the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR), and robots are happening fast, presenting new and on-going challenges”. 

While legacy retailers accelerate their online development and attempt to reinvent in-store consumer experiences, pure-players begin acquiring physical stores. Omnichannel issues are getting more and more crucial as consumers await seamless shopping journeys.  

This course seeks to provide a thorough understanding of the many challenges retailers and e-tailers have to cope with, as well as the strategic and tactic levers they may activate to successfully face this new disrupted environment. 

  • Sales Excellence 

The success of any company depends on its ability to create value for current and potential customers. This course will deal with the implications of value creation in sales and retail organizations.  
Assess the importance of capabilities, roles and collaborations alignment for the success of organizations. 
Develop the analytical skills necessary to understand the new role of sales organizations. 
Learn how to frame business issues and develop strategic propositions that enhance value for customers. 
Gain a deeper knowledge and understanding of the current issues and strategies in the retail sector. 
Understand the complexity and specificity of retail marketing and analyze the drivers of the retailer marketing mix. 
Identify key issues related to cross-channel management.  

  • Strategic Marketing Simulation 

This is a very operational course, teaching how to do it in practice. It introduces the full meaning and key role brands have now within companies and shows how brand management varies according to the sector (industry, services, luxury, distribution, media, sports...) and the level of economic development. The course aims at familiarizing students with advanced brand management principles, concepts and methods. 

The sessions will cover the following topics: From managing the brand to managing BY the brand, brand financial valuation, how brands create value, premiumization vs commoditization, global vs local brands, brand architecture decisions, brand extension decisions, brand portfolio management….in a fully international context. 

All core courses are taught in English 

Elective Courses

  • Consumer Insight 
  • Executive Career in the Internet Age 
  • Fashion Management 
  • Intrapreneurship 
  • La Communication des Marques au 21e Siècle : Nouvelle Vague (course taught in French) 
  • Luxury Management 1 
  • Luxury Management 2 (Bulding the Future of Luxury) 
  • Marketing Through Social Media 
  • Neuroscience & AI Re-Shaping Marketing 

All elective courses are taught in English

Professional Thesis

Students must write a master thesis to graduate from this specialization. It represents an important component of the learning experience. The objective of the thesis is to explore cutting-edge research implementation in daily practice within a highly competitive marketing environment.

Professional Experience

The professional experience requirement is satisfied through the completion of at least 4 months in a course-related field. It is, however, important to stress that this professional experience may not be an internship per se but a full-time job.

Academic Team

Program Faculty

Kristine de Valck

The courses are taught by academic professors from HEC and other universities and by professionals holding key positions in the business world:

  • Anne Michaut, MSc Academic Director
  • Dominique Rouziès, EDF Chair, Professor
  • Michel Badoc, Emeritus Professor
  • Matthieu Bouin, Managing Director, Webhelp
  • Sandrine Cordier, Business Unit Director Hospital Immunology & CNS, MSD France
  • Frédéric Dalsace, Associate Professor, Social Business, Enterprise and Poverty Chair
  • Aude Darrou, Affiliate Professor and Marketing and Innovation consultant at CEO Tagea
  • Kristine de Valck, Associate Professor
  • Vincent Fraitot, Affiliate Professor and Managing Director at venteprivee consulting
  • Philippe Greco, Partner, Concomittance
  • Philippe Hannuna, Owner, PH Conseil and Customer Care, Pixmania
  • Jean-Noël Kapferer, Professor
  • Gachoucha Kretz, Affiliate Professor
  • Anne Michaut-Denizeau, Affiliate Professor, HEC Paris
  • Michael Segalla, Professor
  • L.J. Shrum, Professor
  • Marc Vanhuele, Associate Professor
  • ...