Professor Leads Way in Online Direct Marketing Classes

Ferris State University College of Business professor Susan Jones, helped pioneer the world’s first Direct Marketing online courses in January 1998.

Marketing, Advertising, and Integrated Communications are the heart of the College of Business at Ferris State University. These students are shown how to advertise using all forms of marketing communication without solely relying on creative writing skills.

Joining Ferris State in 1990, professor Jones saw that no campus offered direct marketing courses online. With several companies such as Yamaha and Consumers Energy reaching out to her for marketing advice, she created software for practitioners and students.

The project started in 1997 and was funded by grants from the DMH of Detroit. The software was designed to provide professionals, and undergraduates with the direct marketing skills needed in the workforce. In 1998 she held her first Direct Marketing online course of 27 students.

As time progressed, the technology behind the software also developed into a mature platform. Being first developed on floppy disk to now installed on campus severs. Professor Jones has seen a large increase in the amount of online students over the years. This online capability allows students to fulfill requirements without stepping foot in an actual classroom. Although the majority of students are parents that are returning to school, the requirements are the same as fulltime students.

“Online student’s mindset are that this is the easy way out, but in actuality you work harder because there’s no face-to-face connection, ” said professor Susan Jones.

Being the facilitator of the All-Advertising and IMC marketing meeting each semester, professor Jones instills into students the importance of creating a personal brand. Creating this brand starts from determining what you’re good at, and keeping your personal brand and personal life separate. It is very important for others to learn your level of professionalism as well as defining the services you can provide.