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  1. Hi, I am a working professional in the Indian IT industry. Having completed my education (bachelor's and master's degree) from India, I am planning to pursue PhD in Marketing (Consumer Behaviour track) from the US . GRE score : 326 (Q166, V160) in the first attempt, expecting ~330 (Q168+, V163) in the second attempt Undergrad: B.E. (Electronics and communication) from an not so known Indian University Scored 73%, equivalent to a 4.0 GPA as per the GPA calculator Masters degree: M.B.A. in Marketing, From Symbisis International University, India CGPA 2.6/4, (seems appalling but Indian GPA systems are a bit different, was still in the top 30% , also the highest GPA ever achieved by anyone in the univ is 3.3) Work Experience: 6+ years in product management, user experience and marketing strategy for mobile apps and SaaS based products. Have worked in small to mid level technology start-ups, where my role has had a direct say in product/market strategy. Was granted ESoPs by one of the start-ups as well. Have analysed live user data of over 80 million users over a period of 2 years, hence have a very empirical understanding of different aspects of consumer behaviour, especially in the digital marketing environment. Research experience (while pursuing MBA) Market research projects for 2 start-ups Dissertation: Factors influencing churn and user retention for the telecom market in India Industrial research :Social vs operational factors, which ones being the most influential in making users switch to another telecom service Industrial research: Effect of six-sigma process implementation (by telecom companies) in reducing the customer churn Reason to pursue PhD: Several realizations while working in the tech sector for over 6 years. One of them being that there are no or very few standard models available for the tech- businesses to assess consumer behaviour. Also given that data analysis has always been my forte, I want to pursue something intensive, and something that can be standardized for a long term use. Applying to : 12-14 B-schools(US), spread across evenly but all within the top 30 Dream schools: Kellogg, Duke Fuqua, Columbia, USC Marshall, UT McCombs I have a few questions regarding my profile for which I am seeking inputs: 1) Would my MBA CGPA negatively affect my chances? Should I mention in my SoP that the university just had a mandate that only 1-2% students could score above 3.0? Or rather than blaming the univ, I should justify it in terms of having a different focus back then (4 years ago), which was to be honest getting as much of industry experience as possible. 2) My letters of recommendation: The one from my employer might be more stellar than the ones from my professor as my employer would be able to give an account of more recent account of my quantitative skills. Will this even matter to the admissions committee though (as it is a given that they prefer letters from academicians) ? 3) No published papers at all. Not sure the extent to which this can affect my chances. 4) No academic research experience, the only experience I have is of industrial research Any sort of feedback regarding this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
  2. Hello Everybody, To tell you a little bit about myself, I worked a part-time job during the final semester of my engineering as a Content Researcher with a media company I was responsible for collecting information and gathering requirements through in-person interviews, on-ground surveys, and online search for composing content for the company’s publications. It was during this time when I realized where my interests lay and so, I decided to undertake a research course in media communications to explore my options further. After earning my Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, I went on to pursue an MBA in Communications Management with a specialization in Media Management. Some of the courses that I enjoyed in the program were the ones related to Marketing, Research Methodologies, Statistics, and Consumer Behavior. During my internship, I worked on two research projects, one that involved determine meta-data values with the help of information collected from secondary offline and online sources based on their requirements, which was used to improve their TV content discovery and search across multiple device formats and the other project involved in-depth analysis of the Southeast Asian television market. With the organization's market presence already in Indonesia, they were looking to expand their business across other Southeast Asian countries. I enjoyed this project in particular as it involved extensive research work. I worked on several other research projects during my time at Symbiosis University, my favorite being the development of a white paper for one of the most renowned media networks. The objective of the project was to analyze technology adoption and, identify and understand digital content consumption patterns of users across multiple device formats. We used the secondary online databases and industry reports to put together all our observations. After graduation, I took a small leap from the Media to Information Technology industry and joined a marketing research firm. During my short stint as a Market Research Analyst here, I worked on forecasting demand, identifying new technologies and new investment opportunities in the Information Technology sector. Realizing that my strengths lay mainly in the Media industry, I joined a digital marketing agency. I have been working here as an Analyst in the Marketing Analytics department for almost 1.6 (will be 3 by next year) years now. As an analyst, I work on evaluating marketing channel performance, consumer-product interaction on the brand website, consumer’s purchase behavior, formulating key performance metrics to check for brand/product interactivity and website performance concerning site engagement by using different analytical tools (Google, Adobe, etc.). I have always enjoyed working on retail industry-specific projects, and this is one of the primary reasons why I want to undertake research in this field. I haven't had the chance to work in an academic set-up after graduation. Also, I needed some time to figure out my research interests and I am still working on figuring out a specific area of interest in the online retail space. I think my academic performance has been OKAY so far. I have narrowed down my research interests into three broad areas in online retail - Identifying gaps in user buying journeys to improve and create better product delivery experiences online at each touch-point (focused on micro-moments), effect of each marketing experiment on user buying behavior and comprehending the actual purchase intent of the consumers. Undergraduate: 60% B.Tech in Computer Science, JNTU, Kakinada) Post-Graduation: 3.12/4.00 (MBA - Communications Management, Symbiosis International University) Work Experience: 2 years and more I plan to take GRE and TOEFL this August (2017). I am considering applying to some of these schools - University of Chicago (Booth), Maryland (Robert H.Smith) NYU Stern, University of Georgia, Univ. of South California, and similar other schools. I have read some their research papers and it is very much aligned with my interests. Could you please suggest if there is anything else that I should be doing to strengthen my application and schools that I should be looking at? I would prefer a brutally honest response on my profile. Would really appreciate it. http://www.www.urch.com/forums/images/icons/icon7.png Thanks, Roma P.S. Apologies for the long post.
  3. Hey All! Here's my profile UGPA: WAS 3.17/4 now school in the process of changing GPA calculations to be more aligned with US so it'll be around 2.7. I'm extremely worried about this. Hopefully they won't but worst case scenario I'm considering it a 2.7. It's an international school. I graduated in 2013 in Marketing GradGPA: 3.9/4 US okay-ish school. Very competitive two year STEM program though with a very competitive cohort and quant heavy courses GRE: 320 (164Q 156V) TOEFL: 118 Research Experience: None TA: Experience None Question: Do I apply for a second masters in statistics or something related at an IvyLeague school /top 10 school or will a potential 2.7 in undergrad kill that*? Or do I wait and stay as an RA as my school for an extra year then apply to phd programs at top 50 or 100 schools? Also in the long run IF I get into a top masters program would two masters with high GPAs (with one from an ivy league ) cover a low undergrad? And can you get into CB with a masters in analytics or statistics? *I talked to a program manager at one of the schools I'm considering she said they'll mainly look at my masters courses since they're the most relevant and most recent. I don't know if I can be sure of that as while her job is very important she's mainly on the logistical side of things i.e. not the academic manager so don't know if she's in the room when the decision is made. Also I'm not sure that is true for all schools. A little more detail: Okay so here it goes I was really stupid and directionless during my undergrad and I got a 2.7*. I'm currently doing my masters in a large state school in the US in Analytics ,not really in the top 100 but there is some research going on and professors are nice to let students in. I'm in the top of my class and it is a fairly competitive program. Anyway I really want to do my PhD in Marketing (specifically consumer behavior) and I've reached out to a few professors, one doing CB work related to fmri, another in branding, and a third doing modelling who's been published in JM and Marketing Science, and also has ties to really important professors the others publish in second tier journals, and they were very welcoming but mainly all responded that I'd have to start after the break (though only the branding professor was concrete with a plan of "volunteering" for a month before applying for a paid RA, the others kind of just invited me to see a few of their projects). I'm kind of at a cross roads right now. My plan initially was to apply to a masters in statistics at any Ivy League school then reach out to professors there I currently have a 3.9 GPA and my GRE is a 320 164q 156 v but they're two years old so i'll have to retake them, also for the past year and a half i've been taking a huge load of quant heavy courses ranging from time series to game theory as opposed to my bachelors which was in marketing. But I'm not sure i'd be able to get in. I've been recently thinking of staying an extra year as a RA then applying to top 50 schools. I really don't have an exact topic in mind though outside of consumer behavior predictive analytics is the most appealing to me.
  4. Hi I'm a slightly older candidate (late 20s here) I work in market research for a small firm and I have a masters degree in statistics from a non-US school. I've recently taken a huge liking to behavioral research. I took some psychology electives during my undergraduate so I though they were enough to do a masters in Psychology, they were not so when I applied to a couple of programs at some reputable schools last year i got rejected. I have recently gotten an admit from a quantitative methods program at a top school in the US for their spring term, it's oddly one of the very few schools that actually have a spring cohort. Anyway the program isn't housed under the business school but you have 3 free electives and you're free to do your research under any professor at another school as long as they'll take you. I really want to go into consumer behavior and I'm excited at this opportunity. though i'm really worried that the investment might not pay off. if i manage to be a research assistanship with a behavioral research would that make up for it being a quantitative degree? Also how hard is it to get an assistanship with a professor outside your school? also for PhDs in consumer behavior does the school name play a role? and on a more general note Is it possible to get into consumer behavior after doing a second quant-related masters? I'm really confused and I have to pay the deposit soon if anyone KNOWLEDGABLE on the subject has any input please help me
  5. Hi All, I have just started to actively pursue my PhD dreams. I have gone through this forum in detail and appreciate the honest feedback, comments and advice put forward. I hope you could help out in my pursuit too. About Me: Nationality: India Age: 25 years Post Graduate Diploma in Management - with dual specialization in Marketing and Operations Management; CGPA: 7.38/10 The course is recognized as an equivalent to MBA by Association of Indian Universities. [*]Bachelor of Science (Computer Science); CGPA: 7.28/10 [*]Yet to take GMAT and TOEFL - Have started preparations and planning to take TOEFL in September, GMAT in mid-October. [*]Research Experiences - A couple of decent projects during my Management programme. [*]Active in college level activities One of the winners (came 7th) of a national level marketing competition (Nissan Student Brand Manager). Was a leader in organizing Asia-level round of an International Programming Contest (ACM ICPC) for two consecutive years. Headed students associations and actively led multiple regional and college-level events. [*]Work Experience: 1 year as a Software Developer and 1+ years in Sales and Marketing. Expectations: A career in academics. I hail from a family of academicians and I think it runs in my blood too. Have two very specific areas of research (though nothing is finalised) Comes under PhD Marketing (is around B2B Branding) Not sure if it would come under Marketing or Strategy (is around high tech innovations by SMEs - mostly from a marketing perspective) [*]Initially wanted to do a PhD from India. But after some research, was saddened to find that the best of PhDs are merely MBA+ programmes. Hence is open to any university/country with good research culture and facilities (US, UK, France is my top 3; Scandinavia is another option I am thinking). Concerns: The universities I attended (esp the one for my Management degree) does not have a favourable reputation at international level. My grades are not all that great too. However, I would be in the top 20-25%. Breaking into 700+ in GMAT could be a challenge. To be realistic, I am expecting around 650 - 680. I am good in verbal and is working hard on the quant area. I am not really sure if I should even be targeting the Top 30 institutions. Recommendation letters- It is another challenge all together as only a very few of my professors have PhDs. Neither did I have any close interactions with those that have it. I can barely think of 2 valid recommendation letters! I am planning to start my PhD by fall of 2015. Please advice if I stand any chance and which schools I should be targeting. Also, if I manage to get a high GMAT score (around 720+), do you think I have a chance in schools like Harvard or Wharton? (In that case, I can wait and make it happen). Thanks in advance.
  6. Undergraduate: Top 5 business school, 3.7 GPA with honors, majored in Marketing and Information Systems Graduate: Top 40 school, 3.97 GPA, M.S. in Statistics GRE: 170Q (98%), 165V (95%) Math: Advanced statistics, modeling, calculus Other relevant coursework: Courses in consumer behavior, sociology Work: 5+ years in quantitative-based marketing role requiring data analysis, conducting research, and modeling (I've basically spent my years in the office working with quant/qual data and research) Recos: 1 from statistics professor, 1 from past supervisor of 4 years in a highly-quant marketing-focused job, and I am in need of a third PhD research interest: Multi-methods researcher (CB). How specific features of digital and interactive marketing affect consumer perceptions and behavior about the brand to examine how firms can actively manage their customer relationships using these media. I am also interested in the specific factors (both product- and environment-related) that elicit the most efficient online WOM in terms of generating attitudes or behavior most valuable to the firm. Research: None working with professors. All of my research experience has been conducted in my professional career in the form of writing papers and developing studies in topics that are directly related to my doctoral interests. I've executed primary research modeling client data to examine challenges firms face online and present marketing solutions to help business managers in digital marketing. Teaching: Guest lecturer for a marketing course at my UG school (professor passed away since then) Schools of interest: NYU, Columbia, MIT, Temple, BU, Yale I know from reading the boards that my weakest areas in my application are my recommendations and my research experience. I'm putting a lot of emphasis on the research aspects of my career, where the main focus of my job has consistently been data analysis and research specifically focused on digital marketing. I've gone above-and-beyond in the workplace to conduct primary research when it wasn't necessarily part of my responsibilities and have written lengthy papers on multiple digital marketing issues. Obviously, this isn't as valuable as published material, but I wanted to get a sense of whether or not I'm wasting my time given my schools of interest. I'm hoping the academic background and test scores and direct exposure in my field of interest do something to balance my research weaknesses. Any insight is warmly appreciated. Thanks, all!
  7. Request: I seem to have a reasonably different 'profile' compared to most applicants, and therefore, I would like to seek feedback from fellow forum members. Your advice is solicited and any suggestion is welcome. Thank you! The 'Usual' Stuff: Indian, Male, BE - EE ( One of Top UG Engineering schools in India, Merit scholarships, Top 10% of Class approx. Overall GPA 3.8), MBA (One of the Top MBA schools -top rank IIM - Graduated top 10-15% of Class, 10 odd marketing related courses, all grades A or A+ . Overall GPA 3.6+ Marketing/ Strategy GPA - near perfect score. Please note, this school does not have grade inflation) The somewhat 'Unusual' Stuff: 15 Years of work experience, including 10 years in management consulting ( brand name consulting firm, but not the usual 2-3 strategy boutiques). Mostly focus on strategy problems. Would have worked on 75+ projects for several clients. Worked with teams across the globe. Lots of dedicated work in US since 2000. Senior level person now, handling several projects in parallel. Age is close to 40. Test Scores (recent, GMAT 730 (V 40, Q 49), AWA 5.5 TOEFL iBT R: 30 L: 30 S: 30 W: 29 Total 119 GMAT could have been better had I had some free time to prepare properly for the test. Applying: PhD programs of roughly Top 15 US B-schools. Considering Strategy, Policy or Marketing areas. Not pursuing: Statistics, Decision Sciences, Economics, Finance, OM, OB Area: Have a specific area identified, and will only focus on that (ie while applying I will not change research area to suit a specific school or department) Aid: Need limited aid - tuition waiver is all that I am looking for. Is there a different category for students requiring limited aid? Also, I can teach some MBA classes, so I can, in effect, pay for tuition as well, part in kind and part in money. Future Plans: Research and teach Dilemma: Not sure whether I stand a chance. The PhD admission appears to be extremely selective, across all schools
  8. Hi, Nationality- Indian I am trying for an phd in marketing. my profile is Undergrad- 74% (Engg- Electrical and Electronics- Anna University) Grad- MBA- MArketing - 3.7 GMAT-770 do i have an chance in top tier colleges??should i take quant or CB - since i am good at both( scored first in statistical research and consumer behavior oriented subjects in class of 60) What colleges should i apply to?? Can anyone give me list of colleges good at quant and list for CB?? How can i improve my profile? should i try writing papers or taking new courses?? if papers- in what journals??(quant or CB) Please give me tips on how i should improve my profile to get into top 10 colleges??
  9. I know 90% of the forum is anxiously awaiting final decisions as the application season draws to a close, but I have a quick question that might prove a welcome distraction: Is it appropriate/encouraged/ridiculous to attend a research focused conference prior to being accepted into a Phd program? What if you aren't presenting any research, and aren't traveling with someone who is doing so? I am planning on applying for a phd in marketing in the 2011-12 cycle, and it seems like traveling to such a conference would be a great way to meet researchers (students and professors) at other Universities, while getting a glimpse at what's "hot" right now in my area of interest. However, I don't know how these conferences are structured and run, having never gone myself. I am specifically looking at the ACR 2011 conference in St. Louis this October. I would have to travel and pay for all of my own expenses, but I am willing to do so for the opportunity if it makes sense, and wouldn't come across as completely naive. Thoughts?
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