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Introduction to Marketing: Fundamentals of Marketing

Learn the core principles of marketing and how to use them to build communications plans, briefs, and creative assets.

  • Duration

    2 weeks
  • Weekly study

    4 hours

Kick start your career in marketing

In today’s digital age of social media and online advertising, marketing skills are essential for businesses to grow successfully.

On this two-week course, you’ll learn the core marketing fundamentals, the marketing mix, and how to put them into practice within a junior marketing role.

Explore the importance of communication plans and how to build them

Once you have the core principles of marketing, you’ll look at communications planning; a key part of marketing strategy.

Using practical examples of communication plans, you’ll develop the foundations for comms planning and how to write marketing briefs that tie into your plans.

Brand Identity: what is it and why do companies need one?

Many companies now have entire Brand teams within their Marketing departments. Brand identity is becoming increasingly important, and having the right guidelines and creative assets is key.

You’ll cover what brand identity is, as well as the basics on visual and linguistic creative assets and how to manage them.

Discover how to optimise marketing campaigns with the right marketing metrics

Campaigns make up the core of a lot of marketing activities, so to get the most out of your time and budget, campaigns should be optimised.

As part of this course, you’ll learn how to calculate a range of metrics that you can use to optimise your marketing campaigns.


  • Week 1

    Marketing fundamentals

    • Welcome to the course

      In the first activity for week 1, you will spend some time learning how to get the most out of the FutureLearn platform.

    • The core principles of marketing

      As a consumer, you are constantly being bombarded with marketing messages. It is estimated that in the course of a normal day we are exposed to between 3,000 and 5,000 adverts. It’s the job of a marketer to cut through this noise.

    • The fundamentals of communications planning

      In this activity you will learn what processes you need to support the delivery of consistently effective marketing communications to different customer segments.

    • How to write a brief and what to include

      It's incredible how many potentially great campaigns fall at the first hurdle by failing to articulate their vision through an effective marketing brief. What use is an excellent concept if you can't communicate it?

    • Peer graded assignment: write a marketing brief

      In this activity, you will complete a peer graded assignment about writing a marketing brief.

    • Congratulations

      Celebrate having successfully completed your week’s activities.

  • Week 2

    Managing your creative assets and basic marketing math

    • Week outcomes

      This step introduces learners to the outcomes of the week.

    • Managing your creative assets

      In this activity you will learn about the main key areas of brand creative for an organisation..

    • Brand identity

      In this activity you will learn to describe the brand creative elements involved in marketing communication and how to best use them for marketing activities.

    • Visual and linguistic creative assets

      In this activity you will learn to describe the creative elements involved in marketing communication and how to best manage them.

    • Basic marketing maths part 1

      Knowing some basic marketing maths and metrics is great when you're trying to optimise your marketing activities, or manage budgets. It will help you present your results in a way that will be understood by your senior management

    • Basic marketing maths part 2

      In this activity you will continue to learn the importance of maths in marketing; how to calculate a range of metrics; how to use metrics to optimise your marketing campaigns;

    • Additional resources

      The following links will take you to additional content that will enhance your learning experience.

    • End of the course

      Take part in the end-of-course test, and celebrate having completed your week's activities.

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Apply the fundamentals of good marketing in your context
  • Apply and analyse the use of brand guidelines
  • Learn how to write great briefs, crucial for any marketing campaign
  • Calculate a range of metrics you can use to optimise your marketing campaigns
  • Understand the importance of putting your customer at the heart of what you do

Who is the course for?

This marketing course is designed for anyone looking to enter a career in marketing and covers the fundamentals to get started in the industry.

It’s also suitable for existing marketers wanting to refresh and improve their skills and knowledge.

Who will you learn with?

I have a history of expertise in digital marketing, customer-centric communication strategies, and transforming customer engagement in B2C, B2B and not-for-profit.

I am head of learning at The IDM

Who developed the course?

Institute of Data & Marketing

The Institute of Data & Marketing, part of the Data & Marketing Association, is a leading body for the professional development of data and marketing practitioners.

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

Want to know more about learning on FutureLearn? Using FutureLearn

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