Strategic Principles and Practices

Advertising Specialization Course

Two facts: The advertising industry favors the nimble mind, and every decision an agency makes for its clients pivots on strategic understanding and acumen. This course will explore the strategic development process and train students in its execution. That process will be examined through multiple lenses, including case studies of leading national brands; a Strategic Project, focusing on a brand of a student’s choosing; and numerous readings and writing assignments throughout the semester. Strategic Projects are at the core of the course. Students will be required to research and analyze industry/consumer data, derive compelling strategic recommendations from it and write a lively, persuasive document for submission to a potential client. Readings will include works from mainstream marketing leaders and today’s most provocative marketing gadflies. There will be an emphasis on developing students’ writing and presentation skills as well as deepening their understanding of the industry and their eventual role in it.


Strategy in campaign process, strategic brand platforms


  • Describe the role of strategy in the broader communications/campaign development process.
  • Construct and present compelling strategic brand platforms, improved skills in professional writing and presentation, brainstorming and teamwork.
  • Explain and discuss the dynamics of the advertising industry, how an agency works, its strategic functions and the agency role for which the student is best suited.
  • Develop a familiarity with the industry’s ethical standards and obligations and an understanding of its potential to both promote and benefit from diversity.


Kevin O’Neill