David Reibstein

David Reibstein
  • William Stewart Woodside Professor
  • Professor of Marketing

Contact Information

  • office Address:

    743 Jon M. Huntsman Hall
    3730 Walnut Street
    University of Pennsylvania
    Philadelphia, PA 19104

Research Interests: brand equity, marketing metrics: competitive marketing strategies, product line strategy: resource allocation

Links: CV, Personal Website


Professor David J. Reibstein’s research focuses on competitive marketing strategies, marketing metrics, and product line decisions, among other issues. Most recently, Professor Reibstein’s research on competitive marketing strategies addresses competitors’ reactions to marketing actions, offering companies insight into ways to anticipate these reactions and use them as a part of strategizing. His marketing metrics work has focused on linking marketing metrics to financial consequences resulting in his most recent book, entitled Marketing Metrics: The Definitive Guide to Measuring Marketing Performance, 3rd ed.

Professor Reibstein is the Past Chairman of the Board of Directors of the American Marketing Association. A former Executive Director of the Marketing Science Institute, he consults extensively with companies worldwide, including GE, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Rohm and Haas, and others. He also has been involved as an expert witness in numerous cases including Apple vs Samsung.

His research has been published in top-tier academic journals including Marketing Science, Journal of Marketing Research, and the International Journal of Research in Marketing. Professor Reibstein is also the author or co-author of numerous books and chapters in books on subjects including competitive marketing strategy, global branding, and marketing performance measurement, among others.

Professor Reibstein is a dynamic, award-winning teacher who has been honored with more than 30 teaching awards. In 2005, he also received the John S. Day Distinguished Alumni Academic Service Award of Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management, an honor given to a graduate whose service within the academic community reflects the spirit and service of former Krannert Dean John Day. His teaching interests include Marketing Strategy in the MBA Program, as well as teaching Competitive Marketing Strategy, Marketing Metrics, Pricing Strategies, and various other programs for Wharton’s Executive Education Program.

Professor Reibstein received his PhD from Purdue University and his BS and BA degrees from the University of Kansas.

Professor Reibstein has conducted a series of in-depth interviews wtih CEOs and CMOs on the topic of marketing measurement. You can view the video series below.  And, he currently has his own radio show on SiriusXM, Channel 132.

Measured Thoughts by David Reibstein

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  • Travis Tae Oh, Kevin Lane Keller, Scott A. Neslin, David Reibstein, Donald R. Lehmann (2020), The past, present, and future of brand research,. 10.1007/s11002-020-09524-w

    Abstract: This article discusses the past, present, and future of brand research. We begin by reviewing three historical eras of branding development in the past: the information, attribute, and brand equity eras. Each era is marked by an emphasis on a particular concept of brands and a dominant research methodology during that period. We characterize the present of brand research as the branding era, in which brands have become part of the everyday vocabulary, and the concept of “branding” has been embraced by all types of organizations and people. Finally, we share our perspective on the future of brand research by discussing three major shifts in the brand landscape, mostly influenced by technological advancements such as IoT and their capacity to collect granular data at the individual level. We anticipate that new, exciting opportunities in brand research will continue to open up at the intersection of brands, technologies, and people.

  • Winston Wei Dou, Yan Ji, David Reibstein, Renwei Wu (Forthcoming), Inalienable Customer Capital, Corporate Liquidity, and Stock Returns.

  • David Reibstein, How Managers Make Trade-offs Between Metrics When Making Marketing Budgetary Decisions.

  • David Reibstein (2017), Die Marke Deutschland, Global Investor.

  • David Reibstein (2016), Improving Economic Prosperity through Nation Branding, Mind Your Marketing, 2, pp. 100-106.

  • David Reibstein and Paul W. Farris, “Marketing’s Search for a Common Language”. In Accountable Marketing: Linking Marketing Actions to Financial Performance, edited by David Stewart and Craig Gugel, (New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2016), pp. 45-51

  • David Reibstein, Legends in Marketing: George S. Day, Volume 7, Marketing In The Firm And Society (Sage Publications, 2016)

  • David Reibstein, “Marketing in the Firm Society”. In Legends in Marketing: George S. Day, Volume 7, Marketing In The Firm And Society, edited by David Reibstein, (Sage Publications, 2016)

  • Yogesh Joshi, David Reibstein, Z. John Zhang (2016), Turf Wars: Product Line Strategies in Competitve Markets, Marketing Science, 35 (1), pp. 128-141.

  • John Gerzema and David Reibstein, Best Countries: Defining Success and Leadership in The Twenty-First Century (2015)


Past Courses



    Building upon Marketing 611, the goal of this course is to develop skills in formulating and implementing marketing strategies for brands and businesses. The course will focus on issues such as the selection of which businesses and segments to compete in, how to allocate resources across businesses, segments, and elements of the marketing mix, as well as other significant strategic issues facing today's managers in a dynamic competitive environment. A central theme of the course is that the answer to these strategic problems varies over time depending on the stage of the product life cycle at which marketing decisions are being made. As such, the PLC serves as the central organizing vehicle of the course. We will explore such issues as how to design optimal strategies for the launch of new products and services that arise during the introductory phase, how to maximize the acceleration of revenue during the growth phase, how to sustain and extend profitability during the mature phase, and how to manage a business during the inevitable decline phase.


    Building upon Marketing 611, Marketing 613 is an intensive immersion course designed to develop skills in formulating and implementing marketing strategies for brands and businesses. The central activity will be participation in a realistic integrative product management simulation named SABRE. In SABRE, students will form management teams that oversee all critical aspects of modern product management: the design and marketing of new products, advertising budgeting and design, sales force sizing and allocation, and production planning. As in the real world, teams will compete for profitability, and the success that each team has in achieving this goal will be a major driver of the class assessment. The SABRE simulation is used to convey the two foci of learning in the course: the changing nature of strategic problems and their optimal solutions as industries progress through the product life cycle, and exposure to the latest analytic tools for solving these problems. Specifically, SABRE management teams will receive training in both how to make optimal use of marketing research information to reduce uncertainty in product design and positioning, as well as decision support models to guide resource allocation.


    This course views marketing as both a general management responsibility and an orientation of an organization that helps one to create, capture and sustain customer value. The focus is on the business unit and its network of channels, customer relationships, and alliances. Specifically, the course attempts to help develop knowledge and skills in the application of advanced marketing frameworks, concepts, and methods for making strategic choices at the business level.


    RETAIL ECOSYSTEM ACTION LEARNING PROJECTS: This course offers graduate students from Wharton and other Penn schools an opportunity to work on real-world projects for companies in the retail industry and in the wider retail ecosystem. It requires the exploration and analysis of actual business issues or opportunities identified by sponsoring/client companies, as well as the formulation of recommendations. It combines 1) academic principles, 2) application of prior business knowledge to the project at hand, and 3) a solutions-oriented mentality. In addition to supervised project work and regular updates to the corporate client/project sponsor, the course involves classroom meetings and discussions on topics pertaining to the projects. While this course focuses on "marketing" topics, projects might also incorporate topics from related disciplines such as operations, management of innovation & technology, data analytics, international management, design, and real estate. Indeed, the goal will be to constitute interdisciplinary teams from Wharton and other relevant Penn graduate schools. ADVANCED STUDY PROJECT (GENERAL): The principal objectives of this course are to provide opportunities for undertaking an in-depth study of a marketing problem and to develop the students' skills in evaluating research and designing marketing strategies for a variety of management situations. Selected projects can touch on any aspect of marketing as long as this entails the elements of problem structuring, data collection, data analysis, and report preparation. The course entails a considerable amount of independent work. (Strict library-type research is not appropriate) Class sessions are used to monitor progress on the project and provide suggestions for the research design and data analysis. The last portion of the course often includes an oral presentation by each group to the rest of the class and project sponsors. Along with marketing, the projects integrate other elements of management such as finance, production, research and development, and human resources.


    This course is a two part series. The first part concentrates on the Indian Consumer and the second part concentrates on the Chinese Consumer. India and China add up to half of the world's population. Each presents its own challenges and opportunities. US and European MNCs have been in both countries for many years, but emerging market MNC's are becoming stronger and in many cases overtaking US and European companies despite their strong brands and know-how. Marketing to the Indian Consumer will provide a careful understanding of: The opportunity and challenges in the Indian consumer market 2) Various segments within the Indian consumer market. 3) Consumer psychology and decision making processes in each segment 4) Distribution channels in Indi Media in India: Mass, Local and non-traditional. 6) Bottom of the pyramid consumers and rural markets. 7) Product design and development decisions. The course will focus on the following industries: consumer packaged goods, mobile phones, financial services (insurance and banking), healthcare, sports and entertainment, and transportation. The course will involve case studies from local and international companies, guest lecturers, and visits to consumer homes to observe their tastes, habits, and preferences. Marketing to the Chinese Consumer will provide students with a critical understanding of the Chinese consumer, distribution channels, pricing environment, branding and competitive dynamics so as to enhance their ability to market to the Chinese consumer successfully. The course will consist of a combination of lectures, case studies, presentations by industry experts, and a short evening field trip.


    A student contemplating an independent study project must first find a faculty member who agrees to supervise and approve the student's written proposal as an independent study (MKTG 899). If a student wishes the proposed work to be used to meet the ASP requirement, he/she should then submit the approved proposal to the MBA adviser who will determine if it is an appropriate substitute. Such substitutions will only be approved prior to the beginning of the semester.



    Requires written permission of instructor and the department graduate adviser.


    Individual research involving data collection. Students do independent empirical work under the supervision of a faculty member, leading to a written paper. Normally taken in the junior or senior year.

Awards and Honors

  • SSRN Top Ten Download List 2020, 2020 Description

    This recognition was given for the 2019 working paper, “Drowning in Metrics: How Managers Select and Trade-off Metrics for Making Marketing Budgetary Decisions.”

  • MSI Top Download Award 2015, 2015 Description

    This award was given for the 2014 MSI working paper, “Marketing Return on Investment:  Seeking Clarity for Concept and Measurement.”


  • iSIG Fellow 2014, 2014
  • The Earl E. Dyess Lectureship in Marketing, 2011
  • Miller-Sherrerd MBA Core Teaching Award 1993-1998, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008 Description

    1993-1998,2004, 2005, 2007, 2008

  • Wharton Class of 2008 “Goes above and beyond the call of duty” Award, 2008
  • Marketing Metrics: 50+ Metrics Every Executive Should Master (2006) was named as the “Best Business Book: Marketing” by Strategy & Business, 2007
  • Wharton Class of 2007 “Goes above and beyond the call of duty” Award, 2007
  • Awarded the Wharton Excellence in Teaching Award 1982, 1983, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1993-1999, 2006 Description

    1982, 1983, 1985, 1986, 1987, and 1988, 1993-1999, 2006

  • John S. Day Distinguished Alumni Academic Service Award, 2005 Description

    Purdue University

  • WEMBA Excellence in Teaching Award, 1995-1998 Description

    1995, 1996, 1997, 1998

  • The Helen Kardon Moss Anvil Award for Excellence in Teaching in the Graduate Division, 1995 Description


  • Named “The Pick of the B-school Crop,” Business Week, 1993 Description


  • The Class of 1984 award (for the best teaching rating at Wharton for the preceding two years) 1987, 1995 Description

    For the best teaching rating at Wharton for the preceding two years- 1987, 1995

  • Selected by Fortune magazine as one of the nation’s eight “Most Favorite Business School Professors”, 1982 Description

    The only one selected in marketing

  • University of Pennsylvania Lindback Award Nominee (selected by faculty), 1982 Description

    1981-82 – selected by faculty

  • Wharton Anvil Award Finalist (selected by students) 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987 Description

    Selected by students – 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987

  • The Outstanding Graduate Instructor at Purdue University The Krannert School (selected by students), 1973-1974 Description

    The Krannert School, 1973-74 (selected by students)

  • An Outstanding Graduate Instructor at Purdue University (selected by students and faculty), 1973-1974 Description

    The Krannert School, 1973-74 (selected by students and faculty)

In the News

Knowledge @ Wharton


Latest Research

Travis Tae Oh, Kevin Lane Keller, Scott A. Neslin, David Reibstein, Donald R. Lehmann (2020), The past, present, and future of brand research,. 10.1007/s11002-020-09524-w
All Research

In the News

‘Best Countries’ 2020: Which Nations Ranked Highest — and Why?

The annual ranking of the world’s best countries offers keen insight into global branding. Wharton’s David Reibstein discusses which nations came out on top – and which are the ones to watch.

Knowledge @ Wharton - 2020/02/3
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