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Web Assignments Blackboard Music2Go Extra Credit Scores

Music2Go Overview

Essential Music2Go information & files:

bulletInstructions for obtaining & installing the simulation here
bulletMusic2Go tutorial here

"Music2Go" is a management "flight simulator." In this game, you will play the role of the marketing head of a marketing firm faced with a turbulent and difficult market. Music2Go is designed to be an action learning exercise where you will learn concepts, and apply what you learn. It helps you ...

bulletImprove your thinking ability. After playing, you will improve your ability to see connections across functional areas and over time in marketing opportunity areas.
bulletDiscover "best practices" in strategy development. The game can be played many times over with different strategies. By controlled experimentation you will gain insights into the behavior of the marketing system, and be able to discover best practices making strategic decisions.

Music2Go must be downloaded from this web site, for which you will $15 key. Although you are free to experiment with the game -- since any decisions you make in the game can always be reset to its initial starting position -- before you begin the game for serious play be sure to study the Music2Go documentation in your course packet, and follow the online hints and tips as you play the game!

Music2Go Assignments

Music2Go Memo (10 points). Play the game as many times as you like. If you play the game with the right attitude and with no extreme time pressures, this will be a fun and adventurous assignment. Here's what you should do:

bulletForm a team of up to 3 people
bulletDownload & install the simulation ($14.99 fee, paid online)
bulletReview the Music2Go pps file
bulletRead/Review the Student Manual by dividing up the pages and teaching other members of your team
bulletComplete three years, rolling back and charging after EWS as many times as it takes until you are happy with your results
Music2Go Tips
bulletRemember what you've learned about marketing. People choose the product that best meets their needs, but only if (1) they know about it and (2) it's available in stores. And stores will carry the product only if they get good sales support and reasonable margins.
bulletRollback, Rollback, Rollback. What better way to find out what works then rolling back? You'll find that by only changing one variable you can discover what boosted my profits. For example, you may find that decreasing your selling price boosted profits, and then increasing your advertising budget boosted profits even more. You may also find ways to cut costs in sales. It's important to only change one variable in order to know what is going on.
bulletDon't assume that the default decisions are the best decisions for the market. Mix thing up a little--make modifications.
bulletYou can help analyze your effectiveness by comparing your projected profits to your actual profits. First, aim for a high (and reasonable) projected profit by making a variety of decisions. Once you have a good projection (say, $20-$25 million), roll forward, and see how close you were. If you were within 10%, that's pretty good. If not, rollback and change one variable as discussed before. Trial and error is the key.
bulletGet to know the market. Read the fine details of the Student Manual to discover what the markets are asking for. Satisfy their wants!
bulletIt's good to develop new products and to continuously improve upon existing ones.

When you are ready, submit via email a message containing a clear and specific statement of your overall marketing strategy (one paragraph) and Cumulative NMC, for three years of game play (i.e., as of 1999).

Submit your answers via BYU's Blackboard here.

Music2Go Report (60 points) -- submit in hard copy during class time. If you play with a team, just one report is to be submitted. This assignment is for a marketing plan for your firm in the Music2Go game. The paper should largely be based on the situation as of the completion of the sixth year of play (except of course for the Y-by-Y table).

Do not under any circumstances use or refer to submitted work from students having previously taken this course. Any students for which this activity is discovered will receive a Fail for the course and be referred to the University Honor Council.

Assume you are about to turn the management of the CD-player division over to a new management team, which will have to begin with decisions for quarter seven. This a report is being written to give that new team a jump-start, so they can start immediately with high-quality decisions, and a good understanding of the situations or circumstances leading to good strategy and tactics.

Your communication style should thus emphasize objectivity and candor. All sections in the "Paper Format" table below must be included.

Be sure to follow these guidelines:
bulletSingle-space, with double-spacing between paragraphs
bulletInclude a cover sheet, but cardboard or plastic report covers are discouraged; a single staple will do
bulletStart each major section (i.e., Introduction, Situation Analysis, etc.) with a new page 
bulletInclude a short introductory paragraph for each major section
bulletInclude a screen capture of your final Music2Go profits table (Capture the table to your clipboard by highlighting the profits table, type <alt><print screen> simultaneously, then paste the table into your document. If you wish you can use a utility like SnagIt.)
bulletDevelop & include a SWOT matrix following the Harley Davidson example in your course notes
bulletFollow a reasonable and consistent style for a technical report
bulletMake appropriate use of tables or charts, being sure give each both a title and label
bulletUse headings, subheadings, and footers and headers ... a typical page might look like this
bulletWrite, format, and print your paper to show serious effort and thinking
bulletMost good papers will be 8+ pages -- a number easy to reach or exceed -- but quantity will not be rewarded over quality

Note the following, which shows the expected format and point allocation for the paper:

Paper Format

Introduction 5 points. A paragraph or two introducing the paper.
Situation Analysis 10 points. A SWOT analysis along with your discussion of it. You can develop the SWOT matrix in Excel & then import it, or as a table in your word processing application (3 columns x 3 rows). Follow the format of the Harley Davidson example we used in class.
10 points. A year-by-year review of your performance. Use a table having rows of the 6 years, & columns of Year, Decisions, Results, and Reactions. See below for an example. This will be the longest section of your report.
Profitability 10 points. Note that points for profitability are quite low. If you are juggling spending a couple of hours doing a more professional job on your paper vs playing the game to get a few more profitability points, you're probably much better off to work on the paper.

To get profitability points you must include a screen capture (use <alt><print screen> or SnagIt) exhibit of the Musci2Go table showing your profits for the final year. Performance points are based on cumulative net profit contribution for the 6 years of play, so be sure to report the summed profits for all 6 years. Profitability points are awarded as ...

bullet>$50m = +6 pts
bullet>$75m = +7 pts
bullet>$100m = +8 pts
bullet>$125m = +9 pts
bullet>$150m = +10 pts
Strategy for
Quarter 7
5 points. Specific tactical recommendations and strategy for Year 7. Be specific, thinking of this as recommendations you are making to a new management team.
Comparison with the Real World 5 points. A thoughtful discussion of Music2Go vs the real world -- i.e., in what ways it resembles the real world, and in what ways it does not.
What You Learned 5 points. What you learned from playing the simulation, not a rehashing of your Y-to-Y.
Mechanics 10 points. Grammar, spelling, punctuation, consistency, format. One point deducted for each mistake, to a maximum of 10 points.

The table for your Performance Review above might look something like this (for six quarters):

Year Decisions Results Reactions
2 Raised investment in technology to about 15% and 20% of available spending. Chose to focus on Warbirds segment because this is the largest segment. Left everything else as is. Seemed to have little impact on revenues or share. Overall market is growing. Competitors are dropping prices. Everyone else seems to have focused on the Warbirds, too. The "Majority Fallacy" is at work! Fearful that technology investment is not important. Considering whether to stop holding the line on price. Should we switch to the Red Devils segment?
3 Same as for Y1 except dropped prices about 5% for all products. Focusing equally on Warbirds and Red Devils segments. Promotion targeted solely at Red Devils. Have introduced a product based on needs of the Red Devils, except for a slightly higher price. Have shifted technology investment to that product. Market share falling for Warbirds segment; rising in Red Devils. Product functionality is higher than competitors in Red Devils but prices are also higher. Have lowest share in Warbirds segment & second highest in Red Devils. The competition has not developed products specifically for the Red Devils. We have better products for the Red Devils now. We may have waited too long before our technology investment though. Have decided to abandon Warbirds entirely and focus only on Red Devils since the competition has ignored it.


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Professor Bill Swinyard
Marriott School of Management
Brigham Young University, 624 TNRB
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