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Master­arbeit

Grundsätzlich haben Studierende, die an unserem Lehr­stuhl ihre Master­arbeit schreiben möchten, die Möglichkeit eine forschungs­orientierte oder eine praxis­orientierte Master­arbeit anzufertigen.

Voraussetzung für die Anfertigung eine Master­arbeit an unserem Lehr­stuhl ist die erfolgreiche Absolvierung eines Seminars MKT 7X0 an einem der Marketing-Lehr­stühle (LS Homburg MKT 710, LS Stahl MKT 720, LS Kuester MKT 730 oder LS Kraus MKT 740) sowie der erfolgreiche Abschluss der Kurse MKT 510 (alternativ: MKT 301) und MKT 520. Die Voraussetzungen für den Besuch der Seminare finden Sie auf den jeweiligen Informations­seiten der Seminare.

Wir empfehlen, die Master­arbeit an dem Lehr­stuhl zu schreiben, an dem die Seminararbeit geschrieben wurde, da so eine frühzeitige Einbindung in die jeweiligen Forschungs- und Projektarbeiten des Lehr­stuhls ermöglicht wird.

Moritz Tischer, M.Sc.

Moritz Tischer, M.Sc.

Ansprech­partner Master­arbeit

Bei Fragen wenden Sie sich bitte an Moritz Tischer.

Informationen zur Master­arbeit


Forschungs­orientierten Themen

  • Strategisches Marketing

    • The curse of low-involvement products in times of thrilling alternatives

      Betreuer: Stephan Mettler

      In times of social media and an increasing desire of customers to share their experiences with a product or service, many companies struggle to position low-involvement products among its target group. A promising solution to that issue might be to digitize products using IoT (Internet of Things) devices in order to provide customers with additional benefits and services.

      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature, (2) to identify potential ways to increase customer involvement for low-involvement products in a digital environment, and (3) to elaborate how these insights could be used by organizations. To analyze this topic, a survey or expert interviews might be conducted. More specific research questions and the way of inquiry can be determined individually.

      This master thesis may also be written in German

    • Let me see what you are doing: Gaining insights from customer usage behavior

      Betreuer: Stephan Mettler

      Many Internet-of-Things/Smart devices enable manufacturers to track their customers' usage behavior. Academic literature names potential benefits for manufacturers like gaining insights into customer habits, research and development of new product features, and improvements in customer-device interaction. What hasn't been the focal point of research is the customers' perceptions of their personal data usage and, more specifically, potential thresholds for the customer.

      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature, (2) to identify potential thresholds for the customers regarding the nature of data that the manufacturer is gathering, and (3) to elaborate how these thresholds can be used by organizations. To analyze this topic, a survey or expert interviews might be conducted. More specific research questions and the way of inquiry can be determined individually.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Adapting to the „new normality“? The effect of COVID-19 on the B2B sales labor market

      Betreuerin: Aline Lanzrath

      The COVID-19 pandemic has forced B2B buyers and sellers to embrace digitalization on a massive scale. What started as a crisis response has now become the “new normal,” with major implications for how buyers and sellers do business in the near future (e.g., a rapid increase of digital sales prospecting and a decrease in face-to-face meetings). Against this background, the objectives of this seminar paper are (1) to review and systematize relevant academic literature on current and future (B2B) sales challenges and (2) to identify how the role of digitalization and the required skills of salespeople have changed over the course of COVID-19.

      Against this background, the aim of the master thesis is (1) to review and integrate relevant academic literature on organizational change theory and the B2B sales labor market and (2) to identify how the role of digitalization and the required skills of salespeople have changed over the course of COVID-19. To analyze this issue, a text analysis of job descriptions might be conducted.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

  • Produkt- und Innovations­management

    • Augmented Reality in B2B organizations

      Betreuerin: Janina Riether

      Augmented Reality links the real with the virtual world and offers promising opportunities for B2B business operations. Especially since the Covid-19 pandemic, these types of technologies have experienced a boost. While technologies like Augmented Reality via smart glasses are still in its infancy, they already find promising applications in the B2C area. However, applications and underlying mechanisms in B2B business operations are under researched until now.

      Concerning this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature, (2) to identify potential applications in B2B business operations, and (3) to elaborate which mechanisms and consequences can be derived for organizations. To analyze this topic, a survey and/or expert interviews might be conducted. More specific research questions and the way of inquiry can be determined individually.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

  • Preis­management

    • The Role of Negative Emotions in Buying at the Low Price: Attributional Approach

      Betreuerin: Kateryna Ukrainets

      A rational consumer is supposed to choose to pay less money for a particular good, as long as the saved amount is large enough to compensate any tangible costs. Thus, buying at the cheap price is expected to cause positive emotions such as joy of getting a good price deal. Nevertheless, some consumers can ascribe negative causes to low prices in discount stores. As a result, negative emotions occur and influence the purchase decision.

      Accordingly, the central aims of this master thesis are to (1) review the existing literature on the role of emotions in consumer behavior and (2) develop propositions how negative emotions affect the purchase decision in the low price context.

  • Vertriebs­management

    • Psychological distance between buyers & sellers – Classification of relations­hip ties in buyer-seller interactions

      Betreuer: Janina Riether

      Interactions between buyers and sellers in B2B context play an important role in nowadays business operations. Regarding the relations­hip between buyer and seller the literature is relatively sparse. Therefore, it seems to be interesting to examine underlying relations­hip mechanisms in B2B sales interactions and resulting consequences.

      Concerning this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature, (2) to identify potential classifications of relations­hip types in B2B sales interactions, and (3) to elaborate how these relations­hip types can serve to form efficient and long-term oriented buyer-seller relations­hips ties. To analyze this topic, a survey or expert interviews might be conducted. More specific research questions and the way of inquiry can be determined individually.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Negotiations Strategies in Servitization

      Betreuer: Stefan Hartmann

      A large body of research on business negotiations analyzes strategies and tactics to achieve a beneficial outcome. However, most of these studies focus on negotiations around goods and a small fraction focuses on services. A rather neglected area of research are negotiations in relation to Servitization. Servitization describes the process of building revenue streams around products by offering relevant services. This form of business is getting more and more popular among manufacturers. Thereby, the relations­hip between seller and buyer is redefined from a one-time purchase to an ongoing relations­hip. 

      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature, (2) to identify the differences between negotiation strategies to the type of product provided and how Servitization reshapes negotiation behavior and the strategies and (3) to determine how providers might take advantage of the new situation.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • The Organization behind the Negotiator

      Betreuer: Stefan Hartmann

      The successful management of negotiations in the B2B environment has gained increasing importance. For example, companies are facing higher transparency and an increasing performance pressure. Prior research mainly focused on characteristics of an individual as negotiator (e.g. demographics, personality) or teams as negotiators (e.g. team size, power relation between team members). The organization as a whole is mostly neglected. It remains unclear how firms can leverage factors on the organizational level to improve negotiation performance.

      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to identify and analyze the instruments used on an organizational level to support negotiators, (2) to elaborate how these instruments are perceived by sales managers and sales employees and embedded into the organizational culture, structure or strategy and (3) to assess their effectiveness on the negotiation performance.

      To analyze this topic, a survey or expert interviews might be conducted. This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Women in B2B Sales and the Workplace

      Betreuerin: Aline Lanzrath

      Gender diversity has been shown to have a positive impact not only on corporate culture but also on the company's profit line. Similarly, research has shown that companies with a higher level of gender diversity in their sales force significantly exceed their sales targets compared to single gender sales teams.  These results contrast with the continuing under-representation of women in B2B sales, with the sales function facing the second largest gender equality gap of all corporate functions. Among others, the persistence of gender stereotypes in sales has been shown to contribute to this phenomenon. However, despite the high practical and societal relevance, research on gender stereotypes in sales is extremely sparse.

      Against this background, the aim of the master thesis is (1) to review and systematize relevant academic literature on gender stereotypes in marketing and sales and (2) identify barriers that prevent women to choose a career in B2B Sales. To analyze this issue, a survey or expert interviews may be conducted.

    • Convenience or annoyance? Effects of cross-selling offers in online stores on consumer motivation to cross-buy during the CoVid-19 crisis

      Betreuer: Maximilian Knapp

      “Other customers also bought …” or similar phrases are often used by online stores to convince their customers to buy additional products on top of the originally desired one.
      The purchase of these additionally offered products is called cross-buying and has long since been an important part of turnover of online as well as offline shops. Over the last decades, selling additional products has become a great way to increase online sales of companies. However convenient this practice might be for interested customers; these offerings of other products can also be quite annoying if presented in a way that disturbs the user experience.

      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature, (2) to identify strengthening and inhibiting factors of online cross-buying behaviors from the seller’s perspective and (3) to elaborate best practices to approach customers with offerings of additional products.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Perceptions of salespeople in society

      Betreuerin: Aline Lanzrath

      What comes to your mind when you think about salespeople? Is it the insurance agent trying to convince you to buy a life insurance? Is the stereotype you do have in mind male and characterized by traits like ‘pushiness´, ‘competiveness’ and ‘talkativeness’? Yes? But does this stereotype actually reflect the role of salespeople in a today’s digitized world, especially in the B2B context? Despite the high theoretical and practical relevance, research examining (mis-)perceptions of the salesperson’s role remains scarce.   
       
      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review the relevant academic literature, (2) to conduct a survey including a measurement of salesperson stereotypes (3) to analyse the results and discuss the findings.  
       
      The master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Education or Experience: How Important is an Academic Background when Applying in Sales?

      Betreuer: Robin Wagner-Fabisch
      In the past, organizations were primarily on the outlook for sales reps with pronounced selling skills such as persuasion or eloquence. Even if these capabilities still play some notable role in their daily work, more analytical and strategic requirements dominate the remit of today’s sales employees. 

      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature on sales academization, (2) to identify the antecedents as well as consequences for better-educated sales employees, and (3) to discuss how firms can effectively respond to the requirements that are demanded by today’s academized sales reps. 

      To analyze this topic, a survey or expert interviews might be conducted. More specific research questions and the way of inquiry can be determined individually. This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Pricing Authority for the Sales Force: Still Possible in Today’s Transparent World?

      Betreuer: Robin Wagner-Fabisch
      Setting optimal prices is complex in B2B relations­hips; prices typically vary from one customer account to another, and are therefore highly confidential. Since the individual sales employees know best about their customers, they usually play the major role in the negotiation processes. However, due to digitalization in general and the resulting transparency in particular, sensitive price information no longer remain behind closed doors and question the continuation of flexible pricing.    

      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature on pricing authority, (2) to identify the consequences of digitalization on the delegation of pricing authority to the sales force, and (3) to outline possible co­untermeasures to defend the salespeople’s freedom to decide about prices.

      To analyze this topic, expert interviews might be conducted. More specific research questions and the way of inquiry can be determined individually.  
      This master thesis may also be written in German.

  • Kommunikations- und Kunden­beziehungs­management

    • Communicative Customer Win-Back Management

      Betreuer: Robin-Christopher Ruhnau

      Customer Win-Back aims at creating value for firms by winning back lost customers. While lost customers are a reality to almost any firm, many firms still do not exhibit systematic win-back efforts or none at all, and research is scarce. One aspect that the existing win-back literature neglects completely is communication (e.g., how does the ideal win-back communication look like?). Yet, communication is a necessary part of win-back offers (somehow, the offer needs to be communicated) and maybe a cost-efficient way of winning customers back on its own, too.

      This thesis reviews the literature on customer win-back and related areas (e.g., service failure and recovery) to shed light on the role of communication as a part of customer win-back management. One potential research question is whether/how win-back efforts can be purely communicative but still successful. What is more, the thesis will investigate selected aspects of win-back communications empirically, for instance, with analyses of real-world win-back communication, expert interviews, or (lab) experiments.  

      This Master’s thesis may also be written in German.

  • Sonstige Themenfelder

    • Merely an Advertising Function? How Non-Marketers Perceive and Consider Marketing

      Betreuer: Dr. Robin-Christopher Ruhnau

      From a marketer’s perspective, marketing is so much more than just advertising and, in contrast, essentially responsible for a large proportion of what firms do and offer. Similarly, marketing literature portraits marketing as the firm’s primary growth function. Yet it is unclear whether this broad and growth-oriented view of marketing is how relevant non-marketing stakeholders view marketing. Regarding financial markets, for instance, practitioner reports suggest that many analysts and investors consider marketing knowledge to be relatively unimportant. Arguably, marketing may be subject to widespread stereotypes, for example, embracing that it is merely an advertising function or a cost center.

      This thesis addresses how non-marketing stakeholders (possibly with a focus on selected stakeholder groups like investors) perceive marketing as a discipline and as a function in firms. Beyond the mere perception, the consequences of these non-marketer perceptions (e.g., regarding strategic decisions or investments) are of particular interest for the thesis. A major goal of this thesis is to conduct empirical research addressing the focal topic, without already being limited to a specific empirical approach (e.g., survey, lab experiments, qualitative interviews, automated text analysis).

      This Master’s thesis may also be written in German.

    • Fades and Fashions in Marketing Research

      Betreuerin: Aline Lanzrath

      The world of marketing and sales is constantly changing due to constant organizational, scientific, technological and economic changes. To remain relevant, academic researchers must incorporate these trends into their research. But is this actually the case in today's academic research world, or do researchers lag behind the actual developments in the business world?  The goal of this research is to identify trends in the scientific discourse in marketing and sales by examining temporal changes in the occurrence of words or expressions in research articles, identifying latent research topics and thus identifying trending issues. For this purpose, abstracts and articles published in the field of marketing in the years 2000 to 2020 might be analyzed with the help of tidytext in R.

       

    • Employer Branding in the Digital Era – How to attract and retain “Millennials”

      Betreuerin: Aline Lanzrath

      Attracting and retaining the right talent is critical to the success of a business. This is especially true today, as shifts in demographic trends are leading to a shortage of qualified talent in many labor markets. To attract talents and establish the firm as an “employer of choice”, companies therefore increasingly need to focus on sending consistent and clear brand signals through their employer brand.

      However, despite its high practical importance, research on the success factors of employer branding is scarce. In particular, it remains unclear how communication strategies (e.g. job descriptions) should be designed to meet the changing work expectations of a new generation, often referred to as “Millennials”. 

      Against this background, the objective of the master thesis is (1) to review and systematize the relevant academic literature on challenges and success factors in the field of employer branding in a digital era and (2) to conduct an empirical analysis of current recruiting and employer branding strategies. To approach this topic a text mining data analysis using tidytext in R might be conducted.

    • Consumer’s Susceptibility to Social Influence: Cross-Cultural Differences

      Betreuerin: Kateryna Ukrainets

      The impact of social groups on individual behavior has been investigated extensively in the consumer research literature. Some individuals tend to be more susceptible to public opinion and social influence than others. As a result, social influence can alter an individual’s purchase decision. However, research is scarce with regard to how the susceptibility to social influence depends on the cultural background of a decision-maker.

      Therefore, the goal of this master thesis is to (1) provide a comprehensive state-of-the-art literature overview on cross-cultural consumer research in general and (2) develop a conceptual framework on the susceptibility to social influence on the cross-cultural level.

    • Cross-Cultural Differences in Consumers’ Responses to Social Identity Threat

      Betreuerin: Kateryna Ukrainets

      According to social identity theory and self-categorization theory, individuals see themselves in terms of their memberships in different social groups. When an individual exhibits consumer behavior that is not consistent with his or her social identity, and an in-group member observes this inconsistency, an individual experiences social identity threat.

      To mitigate the negative consequences of this threat, individuals apply different coping strategies. Some people tend to avoid products/ services threatening their social identities, while others demonstrate more positive preferences for identity-linked products when that aspect of identity is threatened.

      Research has shown that this difference is explained by an individual’s culture. The goal of this master thesis is to provide additional empirical support to this existing finding with the help of cross- cultural study.

    • Protecting Consumer’s Social Identity: Firms’ Strategies for Mitigation of Social Identity Threat

      Betreuerin: Kateryna Ukrainets

      To thoroughly research this topic, a student has to conduct a literature review and an empirical study (e.g. scenario-based experiment), which would show how companies can protect their consumers when their social identities are at risk. Social identity threat occurs when an individual exhibits consumer behavior that is not consistent with his or her social identity, and an in-group member observes this inconsistency. For instance, empirical evidence exists that men see the consumption of “green” bio-products as threatening their social identity (i.e. gender identity). Other examples of identity-threatening products are electric vehicles or beauty products for men. The goal of this master thesis is, therefore, to figure out with the help of empirical study, which strategies companies can apply to mitigate the possible social identity threat.

    • Online advertising in times of adblockers

      Betreuer: Maximilian Knapp

      In times of the internet, many small and big firms pay websites to show their ads to a variety of potential customers. Some customers nowadays use adblockers, which automatically detect ads and remove them. However the grew to in return use anti-adblockers to take co­unter-measures. Those anti-adblockers vary from scripts merely telling the user to think about allowing ads on the current website to harsh measures like disabling all the other content on the current website until the user disables the adblocker. It proves to be difficult to get adblock users to allow the monetary wise important ads for the displaying website and meanwhile still let them have an enjoyable user experience.

      Against this background, the superordinate goals of this master thesis are (1) to review and systemize relevant academic literature, (2) to analyze the different kinds of anti-adblocker measures there are and (3) to elaborate a way how adblock users should best be approached to allow ads being displayed.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Mail-Order Pharmacies: An Examination of Consumer’s Online Purchasing Behavior of Pharmaceuticals

      Betreuerin: Kim Riede

      The digital transformation is resulting in an ongoing change of the business landscape and also affects the pharmaceutical industry. The number of Online Pharmacies entering the market is constantly growing and so does their customer base. Given these changes, end-consumers are turning into an increasingly important target-audience. Thus, pharmaceutical companies urgently need a more comprehensive understanding of their end-consumers in order to successfully market their products.

      What factors drive consumers to purchase drugs online? Which particular drugs do consumers usually buy online? Under which circumstances and how often do they purchase drugs online? These or other questions could be investigated and evaluated in order to contribute to that field of research.

      More specific research questions and the actual proceeding can be determined individually. Creativity and motivation to do empirical research are expected.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Consumer’s Susceptibility to External Advises prior to the Purchase of Non-Prescription Medicines

      Betreuerin: Kim Riede

      Nowadays consumers are more empowered to participate in their own health care than ever before and their knowledge on pharmaceutical products enhanced. These developments have not only resulted in a new and challenging environment for pharmaceutical marketers but also fostered consumers to turn into evermore stand-alone decision makers for their medications. However, not all of consumer’s medication purchases are based on autonomous decisions.  Consequently, marketers need to develop a more thorough understanding on how the purchasing decisions of consumers are externally influenced.

      More precisely, they need to assess under which circumstances consumers are receptive to external advises and which external advisors they prefer depending on the respective circumstances.

      These or other questions could be investigated and evaluated in order to contribute to that field of research.

      More specific research questions and the actual proceeding can be determined individually. Creativity and motivation to do empirical research are expected.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

    • Consumer Involvement in FMCG-Purchases

      Betreuerin: Kim Riede

      The concept of involvement has received considerable attention from consumer researchers because it is a helpful tool to explain how consumers respond to marketing stimuli. Thereby researchers distinguish high from low involvement. Depending on the degree of involvement in a purchase decision, the extent of information-seeking behavior and the degree of awareness about purchase alternatives significantly differ.

      Even though being intensively studied, researchers to date apply inconsistent approaches to measure the involvement of consumers.  Due to these inconsistencies, it is the goal of this thesis to provide a systematic literature overview of articles in marketing, which use the concept of involvement to analyze consumer’s behavior in purchasing FMCG products. Besides, the thesis suppose to shed light on the methodological approaches applied in extant research that investigates the involvement of consumers in their purchase of FMCG products.

      This master thesis may also be written in German.

Falls Sie sich für ein Thema interessieren, kontaktieren Sie bitte direkt den entsprechenden Betreuer.

Ferner besteht die Möglichkeit, eigene Themen vorzuschlagen. Kontaktieren Sie hierzu bitte zunächst Moritz Tischer.


Praxis­orientierten Themen

Unsere praxis­orientierten Themen beziehen sich entweder auf Fragestellungen mit explizitem Branchenbezug, oder mit Fragestellungen, die in Kooperation mit einem bestimmten Unternehmen behandelt werden.

  • Themen mit Branchenbezug

    Aktuell haben wir keine Themen mit Branchenbezug ausgeschrieben.

  • Arbeiten in Kooperation mit Unternehmen

    Pricing im Direct-to-Consumer Business (D2C) | Kooperation BSH Hausgeräte

    BSH Hausgeräte GmbH | München | Vollzeit | Startdatum Juni 2021

    Immer häufiger wählen Hersteller von Konsumgütern einen Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) Ansatz als Ergänzung zum traditionellen Business-to-Business Ansatz (B2B). In dieser Master­arbeit geht es darum, aus diesem Trend Handlungs­empfehlungen für die D2C Preissetzung und Sortimentspolitik abzuleiten.

    • Theoretische Modellierung der neuen Markt­rolle eines D2C Herstellers
    • Ableitung von Implikationen für das D2C Pricing und die Sortimentspolitik
    • Erarbeitung eines Ordnungs­rahmens (Framework) und Ableitung von Handlungs­strategien
    • Durchführung von quantitativen Interviews mit anderen D2C Playern

Bei Fragen zu den branchenbezogenen Themen kontaktieren Sie bitte direkt den entsprechenden Betreuer. Bei Fragen zu den Arbeiten in Kooperation mit Unternehmen wenden Sie sich bitte an Moritz Tischer.

Falls Sie eigenständig den Kontakt zu einem Unternehmen aufnehmen möchten, sollten Sie vorab mit uns Rücksprache halten.