Marco Carini completed his degree in business administration from IE University in Spain.

Having moved there from his hometown in Italy and having also done an exchange in the United States, he saw the value in having such diverse cultural experiences.

So, when looking to further his education and specialize in marketing, he found his way to the ESSEC MSc Marketing Management and Digital (MMD) program at ESSEC Asia-Pacific.

He shares more about Singapore’s appeal and how ESSEC’s learning by doing pedagogy has benefited him.

Tell us about your career ambitions. How did ESSEC MMD fit in?

I’m very interested in the area of brand management and strategy. I’d like to work in industries like FMCG for a company like Mondelez or LVMH’s Moët & Chandon.

This is partly why the ESSEC MMD program stood out—it has a solid connection to the world of luxury.

I felt it would allow me to open my career to the luxury market in Asia, and even if I decided to return to Europe, ESSEC’s reputation would still be able to open doors.

You chose the MMD program partly for its international exposure. How has the campus lived up to your expectations?

In Spain, students came primarily from European backgrounds, and there weren’t many Asians.

But in Singapore, there are people from India and Thailand. Instead of a European focus, we have an Asian focus, which I find super enriching!

How will this international exposure benefit your future career?

The more you travel and see the world, the more open-minded you will become.

From a marketing perspective, you’ll have more ideas and a broader perspective on designing strategies and campaigns.

You’ll also better understand what is most effective in different countries.

For example, during my digital marketing class, I learned about the culture and digital nuances of launching a business in Thailand.

Having moved from an Italian-speaking high school to an English-speaking university, I’ve also realized that the more I leave my comfort zone, the more I grow!

What are some highlights of your time at ESSEC so far?

One highlight is a project we did during our social media management class. We had to help a health food company, AG1, launch a go-to-market strategy for an Asian country.

My group was assigned to China, and learning about China’s social media, such as Weibo and Douyin, was very interesting.

There were so many complex things that we never thought possible but are done on these social media platforms!

We found that cute icons worked well with the market, so we created one for our presentation.

We also learned that it’s important for foreign companies to partner with local ones in China, so we researched and found a local yogurt brand with which to plan a partnership.

How was this different from other projects or case studies?

The AG1 team came down for the initial briefing and gave us a clear structure and specific points they wanted us to work on.

We also attended their public events at Bukit Timah Hill. At the final presentation, the managing director listened and gave us feedback.

I liked that we had to examine the consumer journey in depth and determine how to reach the target market.

It was also interesting because our groups included people from different countries, and we all had to explore unfamiliar cultures.

What are you looking forward to for the rest of your MMD program?

I’m working with Richemont for the Digital Marketing Challenge (DMC), Longchamp for the luxury brand marketing class, and taking part in the L’Oreal Brandstorm with some friends.

I hope to find an internship in Singapore or Hong Kong and do something in Asia before returning to Europe.