All marketing decisions should be based upon knowledge and careful analysis.
Analysis and Research
All marketing decisions should be
based upon knowledge and careful analysis. Knowledge can be sourced either from
intelligence or from research. While formal analysis and research are
important, nothing replaces common sense and good judgment. It implies that
managers should develop intelligence- a knowledge base- by observing the developments in the environment. When
intelligence is inadequate formal research becomes necessary. The analysis and
research need not be quantitative, but it should be deliberate and should be
matched to the magnitude of the decision being made.
The marketer’s kit has some very
powerful analytical tools and the rapid development of decision support
systems, mathematics including statistics, and other supporting disciplines
such as psychology and sociology insure that the diversity and power of the
tools will continue to increase. All of the tools must be applied carefully and
intelligently to the decision at hand. It is a fine line, indeed between
healthy skepticism and arrogant neglect of useful tools. The right analytical
tool well applied can substantially improve marketing decision making.
Table 1.3.1 has two dimensions.
The first is temporal – it shows the natural development from strategy
formulation through planning, programming, allocating and budgeting on to
implementation. This process is not nearly as ‘clean and separated’ as the
table implies. The activities are interrelated and contemporaneous.
The second dimension is the
lateral connection to other functional parts of the organization, such as
production and operations, finance, control and human resources management.
Each step has a company or business counterpart in the right-hand column. The
marketing strategy thus becomes part of the total corporate strategy, which
includes all functional areas.
The marketing plan is often part
of a broader corporate business plan. The marketing plan is usually the ‘front
end’ of the corporate plan, because it spells out the operation, human and
financial resources needed to support the organization’s approach to its
Marketing programs and budgets
are usually part of the organization’s fundamental operating documents. For
example, the sales forecasts in the programs and budgets become the production
schedule for the manufacturing function. Those, in turn, become the staffing
programs for the human resource function and indicate the working capital needs
to be supported by the financial function. If finance cannot support such a
high level of inventory and accounts receivable, the sales forecast, production
schedule and staffing program must be scaled down. In most organizations, great
effort must be devoted to such lateral connections. The coordination needs are
very high and the amount of conflict often great. Risk aversion and opportunity
sensitivity differ among functions. Varying reward systems sometimes encourage
different types of behaviour. The organization must develop formal and informal
ways to foster good, open lateral connections.
Tags : MARKETING MANAGEMENT - Marketing Process
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