Assistant Professor, Department of Marketing
Marketing has always been one of the most popular majors in the College of Business and Economics, but the growth in big data and its applications to marketing have led to even greater interest in the field.
“In the past, if business students were interested in numbers, they would gravitate toward accounting or finance,” explains Gauri Kulkarni, who was hired by Towson University for her expertise in marketing analytics and how organizations use data to shape marketing decisions. “Now that the marketing field has seized big data and organizations are competitively collecting all types of data and tracking buying habits, marketing is more numbers-driven than ever before.”
As marketing needs change, Kulkarni is helping to ensure the timeliness of course offerings in the M.S. in Marketing Intelligence with an embedded Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Interactive Marketing.
In Principles of Marketing and a new undergraduate course that draws on data, Marketing Information for Decision Making, Kulkarni appeals to students as consumers. “Students realize that with every credit card purchase, retailers build knowledge about them,” says Kulkarni. “They are contacted by retailers regularly via email, social media and even texts.” The level of student participation in the classroom is always high in her classes. “Students are more than willing to share their own stories and ask questions,” she adds.
Kulkarni has written extensively about the power of data in retailing, from purchasing automobiles to buying Broadway show tickets, and she has presented at major conferences over the last decade. She acknowledges that the next frontier will use advanced technology to target individual consumers. “Retailers will use facial recognition technology to target ads at the personal level based on age, gender, and other attributes they can garner from facial recognition programs.”