Prof. Dr. Jan Becker

Professor of Marketing and Service Management

Jan Becker is Professor of Marketing and Service Management at Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. He studied Business Administration in Kiel and Bayreuth and holds a doctorate and habilitation in Marketing from the Christian-Albrechts-University at Kiel. Before joining KLU in 2011, he taught at the universities of Kiel, Passau, and Rostock. His teaching portfolio comprises several Marketing courses in the bachelor, master, and doctoral programs as well as in the Executive Education.

Prof. Becker’s research focuses on topics such as Customer Relationship Management, Strategic Marketing, as well as Service Management and Electronic Commerce. His research has been published in prestigious international journals such as Journal of Marketing, International Journal of Research in Marketing, Journal of Service Research, Marketing Letters, and Journal of Business Ethics. His research has won the 2018 Sheth/Journal of Marketing Award for the long-term contribution to the discipline of marketing, and the 2015 IJRM Best Paper Award. Furthermore, he was finalist for the 2011 MSI/H. Paul Root Award as well as for the 2018 VHB Best Paper Award. Becker is a regular visiting scholar at the Anderson Graduate School of Management, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

With more than 15 years of industry and consulting experience in the field of digital transformation, Prof. Becker regularly engages in research co-operations with firms from various industries on customer management topics such as referral programs, churn prevention, and targeting. A common thread of these projects is the use of advanced analytical methods to support management in decision-making.

Selected Publications

DOI: 10.1509/jm.10.0088 

Abstract: Seeding strategies have strong influences on the success of viral marketing campaigns, but previous studies using computer simulations and analytical models have produced conflicting recommendations about the optimal seeding strategy. This study compares four seeding strategies in two complementary small-scale field experiments, as well as in one real-life viral marketing campaign involving more than 200,000 customers of a mobile phone service provider. The empirical results show that the best seeding strategies can be up to eight times more successful than other seeding strategies. Seeding to well-connected people is the most successful approach because these attractive seeding points are more likely to participate in viral marketing campaigns. This finding contradicts a common assumption in other studies. Well-connected people also actively use their greater reach but do not have more influence on their peers than do less well-connected people.

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Research Projects

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Academic Positions

Since 2018Professor of Marketing and Service Management, Kühne Logistics University, Hamburg, Germany
2016-2017Dean of Research at Kühne Logistics University, Hamburg, Germany

Associate Professor of Marketing and Service Management, Kühne Logistics University, Hamburg, Germany

2010 - 2011

Assistant Professor of Marketing and Service Management, Kühne Logistics University, Hamburg, Germany

2008 - 2009

Visiting Scholar at the University of California, Los Angeles, USA

2007 - 2010

Assistant Professor of Marketing, Christian-Albrechts-University at Kiel, Germany



Dr. habil., Christian-Albrechts-University at Kiel, Germany.
Habilitation: "Essays on Issues in Marketing and Innovation Management"


Dr. sc. pol., Christian-Albrechts-University at Kiel, Germany.
Dissertation: "Economic Analysis of User Motivation in File-Sharing Networks"
Co-Chairs: Sönke Albers and Joachim Wolf


MSc. in Business Administration (Marketing, Controlling), Christian-Albrechts-University at Kiel, Germany


BSc. in Business Administration, University of Bayreuth, Germany