Faculty Directory

Student with Book and Laptop
Michael Braun

Michael Braun


Associate Professor
Fisher Faculty Fellow


Fincher 309


View CV


Michael Braun, associate professor of marketing and Fisher Faculty Fellow at the Cox School of Business, comes to Southern Methodist University (SMU) in 2013 after seven years on the faculty of the MIT Sloan School of Management.  The core of his research is the statistical analysis of large and complex customer databases.  He has written on, spoken on, and taught about management topics such as sales forecasting, customer retention and valuation, marketing ROI, social networking models, segmentation and targeting strategies, online advertising, and insurance decisions.  Professor Braun’s work has been published in top academic publications such as Marketing Science, Management Science, and the Journal of the American Statistical Association, and he is a member of the Marketing Science Editorial Review Board.  He has held several leadership positions for the American Statistical Association's Section on Statistics and Marketing, including section chair in 2011 and program chair in 2009, 2013 and 2015.  In addition, he is the author of four software packages for the R statistical computing language.

Professor Braun’s teaching interests are to train the next generation of business leaders on how to analyze, interpret, and use marketing data to address real-world managerial problems.  He takes a hands-on approach with his classes, believing that managers cannot act effectively on the volumes of customer data that they collect, unless they master a foundational set of quantitative, statistical tools.  He teaches the core Marketing Management and Managerial Statistics courses in the full-time and professional MBA programs, as well as Predictive Analytics in the MS in Business Analytics program.

Michael Braun earned his PhD from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.  He holds an AB with honors in economics from Princeton University, and an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.  Before entering academia, he worked on the development and deployment of broadband Internet products for such companies as Comcast, Marcus Cable, and Charter Communications.  From 1999 to 2002, he was vice president for Global Affiliate Operations of Chello Broadband, the Amsterdam-based Internet arm of United Pan-Europe Communications.  He also worked as a production assistant at ESPN, and as a researcher for NBC at the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona. 


Customer loyalty and retention
Estimating customer lifetime value
Advertising targeting and response
Bayesian methods for marketing research
Computation for customer analytics


Working Papers

Braun, Michael, Jeremy Rosenthal, and Kyle Therrian (2017). “Racial Disparity in Enforcement of Ambiguously Defined Crimes: A Bayesian Analysis of Texas Organized Retail Theft Arrests”.
Working paper. https://ssrn.com/abstract=2959076

Braun, Michael (2017). “sparseHessianFD: An R Package for Estimating Sparse Hessians.” Forthcoming at Journal of Statistical Software.  https://CRAN.R-project.org/package=sparseHessianFD


Recent publications

Braun, Michael and Paul Damien (2016). “Scalable Rejection Sampling for Bayesian Hierarchical Models.” Marketing Science, 35(3):427–444. https://doi.org/10/b4bd .

Braun, Michael, David A. Schweidel, and Eli M. Stein (2015). “Transaction Attributes and Customer Valuation.” Journal of Marketing Research, 52(6):848–864. https://doi.org/10/b4bb .

Braun, Michael (2014). “trustOptim: An R Package for Trust Region Optimization with Sparse Hessians.” Journal of Statistical Software, 60(4):1–16. https://doi.org/10/b4bc

Braun, Michael and Wendy W. Moe (2013). “Online Display Advertising: Modeling the Effects of Multiple Creatives and Individual Impression Histories.” Marketing Science, 32(5):753–767. https://doi.org/10/b4bf 

Braun, Michael and David A. Schweidel (2011). “Modeling Customer Lifetimes with Multiple Causes of Churn.” Marketing Science, 30(5):881–902. https://doi.org/10/ddv975


MAST 6201 Managerial Statistics (MBA)
MKTG 6201 Marketing Management (MBA)
MAST 6252 Applied Predictive Analytics II (MSBA)