How do you distinguish marketing fads from fundamentals? How can you turn "aha" moments into actionable consumer-focused marketing plans? Stanford's Strategic Marketing Management program is designed to inform and inspire, to get your light bulbs flashing, and your creative juices flowing. This is innovation in action, in the heart of Silicon Valley where marketing is being reinvented every day.

Program tuition includes private accommodations, all meals, and course materials.


"Business has only two functions: marketing and innovation." Stanford's Strategic Marketing Management program brings this famous Peter Drucker quote to life, making marketing theory actionable and innovation possible. This week-and-a-half comprehensive marketing program combines strategic frameworks and fundamentals, site visits, group collaboration, and guest speakers to give you a real-world, hands-on learning experience. It's a convergence of traditional and digital, theory and practice, B2B and B2C.

Drawing on the unique Silicon Valley spirit, this program includes content on innovation and decision making critical to marketers. You'll examine core marketing fundamentals like customer and competitor analysis, value pricing, relationship management, brand management, and digital marketing. And you'll integrate these core elements to create a cohesive marketing strategy within the context of your overall business strategy. In-depth sessions explore competition and strategic interaction between firms, provide insights on executing change management initiatives, and teach frameworks for aligning a firm’s value proposition with its organizational culture.

Faculty Director
Other Faculty
Baba Shiv

Sanwa Bank, Limited, Professor of Marketing; Director of the Strategic Marketing Management Executive Program

Baba Shiv's research is in the area of neuroeconomics. His research has predominantly focused on the role of the brain's liking and wanting systems in shaping decisions, consumption experiences, and the memories of these experiences. The nature of the issues that he examines are: Does being denied something make people pursue it more hotly but also simultaneously like it less? Does a wine's price tag price affect the pleasure one experiences?

Baba Shiv teaches courses at the GSB that build on his research interests. Examples of some of the courses that he teaches include "The Frinky Science of the Mind" and "Entrepreneurial Ventures in Luxury Markets."

Robert A. Magowan Professor of Marketing

Associate Professor of Marketing; Citi Faculty Director, Behavioral Lab; Younger Family Faculty Scholar for 2014-2015

Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers Professor of Electronic Business and Commerce, and Management; Co-director of the Value Chain Innovation Initiative

Professor of Marketing

Robert K. Jaedicke Professor of Accounting; Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs; Professor of Law (by courtesy), Stanford Law School; Codirector of the Finance and Accounting for the Nonfinancial Executive Program

Atholl McBean Professor of Organizational Behavior and Human Resources; Professor of Sociology (by courtesy), School of Humanities and Sciences; Academic Director, Stanford Innovation and Entrepreneurship Certificate; Director of the Managing Talent for Strategic Advantage Executive Program; Codirector of the Customer-Focused Innovation Executive Program

Adams Distinguished Professor of Management, Emeritus

Video Introduction
Strategic Marketing Management
"Marketing is the very essence of business." — Baba Shiv

Meet faculty director Baba Shiv and hear how this comprehensive, innovative marketing program brings together world-class academics and Silicon Valley practitioners.
Key Benefits

The Strategic Marketing Management program will help you:

  • Learn frameworks for analyzing customer preferences and enhancing customer intimacy
  • Gain in-depth knowledge of competitive dynamics
  • Integrate your digital, brand, and business strategies
  • Get exposure to Silicon Valley companies, ideas, and executives
  • Develop an action plan to implement change in your organization

Program Highlights

Customer intimacy is a means to an end.  It is a strategy for sustaining competitive advantage in the market by developing learning relationships with customers.  These learning relationships enable the company to deliver appropriately customized products and services to customer segments with different sets of needs. We begin this session with a brief overview of customer intimacy and a discussion of the circumstances under which it makes sense to pursue a strategy of customer intimacy.  We then examine the case of Harrah's Entertainment to identify the key principles underlying their successful customer relationship management program.

To better understand your customers and their purchasing decisions, you must first understand how humans fundamentally make decisions.  A substantial proportion of these decisions is shaped by basic instinctual systems and processes that are not only automatic but also non-conscious.  Throughout the course of the two sessions these basic neural systems will be unraveled, with an emphasis placed on the liking and the wanting systems. In the process we will highlight the critical role that emotion plays in the customer decision-making process and ways by which one can shape emotion to foster greater loyalty toward and willingness to pay for an offering, and most importantly, enhanced experience utility from the offering.  We will also discuss the downside of focusing on price rather than the brand to create a superior customer value proposition and, based on our understanding of the instinctual brain systems, the effective incentive systems that can be set for your customers.

"Business Strategy" is perhaps the most overused and least understood concept in our business vocabularies. What, exactly, is a business strategy? And how do you develop better business strategies? In the course of these two sessions you will examine the fundamental building blocks of business strategy, including the all-important elements of marketing strategy, and develop a process for Creating Better Strategies.

Other Selected Sessions

  • Understanding Customer Preferences
  • Understanding Customer Profitability
  • Value-Based Pricing
  • Linking Organizational Culture to the Customer Value Proposition
  • Go-to-Market Strategies
  • Scaling Up Excellence
  • Effective Digital Communication

Who Should Attend?

Strategic Marketing Management will take your marketing to the next level. It's specifically designed for:

  • Marketing executives and managers with at least eight years of management experience—from any size company, any industry, and any country
  • General managers with responsibility for marketing-related functions
SAMPLE Participant Mix

Guest Speakers

Previous speakers include:

Oliver Claude
Senior Director, EIM Solution Management at SAP on What's Next: Applying the Program Content in Your Day-to-Day Roles

Kaaren Hanson
Vice President, Design Innovation (DIG), Intuit on Using Ethnography to Better Understand Customers

Steve Haro
Director, 777 Marketing at Boeing Commercial Airplanes on Branding in the B2B Context

Oren Jacob
Founder and CEO at ToyTalk, Inc. on Telling Stories That Resonate

Dan R. E. Thomas
Founder and President of Focus, Inc,; former faculty member of Stanford Graduate School of Business and Harvard Business School


Stanford University
The Stanford campus is world renowned for its natural beauty, Spanish mission-style architecture, and temperate climate. With more than 8,180 acres (3,310 hectares), Stanford's campus ranks as one of the largest in the United States. Participants in Stanford's Executive Programs become part of a quintessential university setting, residing together, walking or biking to classes, and enjoying access to Stanford University facilities.
The Knight Management Center
Opened in spring 2011, the Knight Management Center has transformed the Stanford Graduate School of Business into a vibrant and unified indoor-outdoor, living and learning community. Participants will take classes at this new state-of-the-art campus, which features tiered classrooms with extensive floor-to-ceiling glass, the latest in audiovisual technology, numerous breakout and study rooms, outdoor seating areas to encourage informal discussion, and an open collaboration lab that employs hands-on and design thinking techniques.
Schwab Residential Center
Designed by renowned Mexican architect, Ricardo Legorreta, the Schwab Residential Center gives residents ample privacy while promoting collegial interaction through shared lounges, outdoor meeting areas, a library, and an exercise room.
Since attending SMM at Stanford, I immediately started showing up in a more senior and strategic way, adding new value to our company (which has been recognized by our management). Getting out of the day-to-day grind for 10 days and learning from both professors and classmates was an outstanding experience I will always remember and a worthy investment of any executive’s time.
– Keil Gunther
Vice President, Marketing & Communications
SMM has given me the confidence to lead and transform. The program incorporates the best minds available - as instructors, facilitators, and as participants. I'm energized by the class interactions and by the long term acquisition of skills and knowledge. It's given me the confidence to set goals and to move forward both professionally and personally.
– Kip Darcy
Vice President, Marketing, Communications and Enrollment
Kettering University
This was the best educational experience I've ever had in any executive program by a wide margin. The lessons learned in the program made it possible for me to lead marketing strategies more effectively, transforming them from plans to accomplishments with greater accuracy and effectiveness. In addition, this program continues to be a vital catalyst of rejuvenating customer-driven innovation in our company.
– Louis Columbus
Director of Product Marketing
I attended Stanford's Strategic Marketing Management Program with the goal of brushing up on my strategic marketing competencies. The program delivered on this 110%. The breadth and depth of the topics in the program are well-balanced and when leaving this program, you are particularly aware of why, how, when, and to whom to deliver extraordinary perceived consumer value.
– Reno Peter Øhlenschlæger
Chief Marketing Manager
Statoil A/S
The superior faculty instruction, the intensity of study, and the incredible range of workplace experiences and knowledge held by the participants are all invaluable assets.
– Greg C. McCullough
Communications Manager
This program offered a great broad-sweep approach to marketing strategy and a wonderfully diverse group of senior managers.
– Lakshmi Gopalkrishnan
Lead Site Manager, Microsoft Office
Great lectures, stimulating discussions, and interesting classmates make this intensive program one not to be missed! The program helped me better understand other areas in our company and identify areas of weakness.
– Kathleen M. Paver
Senior VP, Marketing
Pier 39
The best elements of this program are the quality of the faculty leading the discussions and the diverse nature of the participants in terms of geographic location and industry. I am taking away a better understanding of how to communicate brand equity to my management team and a few great ideas for making lively presentations.
– Laura Garner
Director of Marketing
Citibank Alternative Investment Strategies


Ryan Chin
Associate Director, Programs and Marketing
Phone: +1.650.736.4475

The Stanford Difference

The Place: Immerse yourself in innovation.
The Experience: Transform your thinking, your career, your company.
The Approach: Challenge yourself with research-based learning and real-world experience.