The Awakening of New Era Marketing
Intense competition drives companies to focus more on marketing activities. Customers have many choices and at times they are fickle minded to make selections. These customers are value seekers.
Author: Catherine Muthu
Intense competition drives companies to focus more on marketing activities. Customers have many choices and at times they are fickle minded to make selections. These customers are value seekers. Making comparisons has become a trend as there are many platforms to acquire such assistance, such as social media. Moreover, such assistance, not only influence customers positively but negative as well. Marketers need to acknowledge such behaviors and seek for strategic approach to overcome such challenges. Hence, this calls for the awakening of new era marketing, enhancing the primary activities by improving the supporting activities and further looking out for niche opportunities that could bring the company to greater heights.
Competition, customer evangelist, internal marketing, market orientation, marketing dilemma, modern world, new product development, strategic marketing, value, vendor relations
The Importance of Marketing
The importance of any business is to generate profit. Hence, the success or failure of any organisation is determined by how much profit is substantial in order to advance to the next level. The effort through marketing determines that precise fact. According to Leventhal, a market-driven strategy allows a company to get more knowledge and understanding of its target market. This method can increase the effectiveness of all the activities that may impact the customer value, affects both return on investment and profitability. The success of an organization rests on a solid reputation which then reflects and builds brand recognition on its product and services. When a company reaches the high expectations of the public, its reputation stands on firmer ground.
“The way to gain a good reputation is to endeavour to be what you desire to appear” - Socrates
A research stated that consumers will decide which product to purchase depending on the brand image more than the quality of a product (Zhang, 2015). A positive brand image of product will able to let an organization to compete with the competitors. Besides that, marketing plays an important role for an organization, marketing will be the bridge between an organization and the customers. More so, it can build bridges between their suppliers by creating effective vendor relationship. Marketers have to make sure they can help the company to gain revenue and building image, at the same time the marketers have to make sure that customers are always satisfied with the products or services and even at certain circumstances, both and make improvement whenever there is any dissatisfaction in order to retain loyal customers.
According to Dun & Bradstreet, 48 percent of all business failures can be attributed to a slowing down or ineffectiveness in the area of marketing and sales. Marketing is a core function of every organization immaterial of what businesses they are in. Marketing takes the lead in transforming inputs to profit.
Marketing is the lifeblood of any business. An organization may have vast experience in a specific field, loads of technical know-how and sound financial management skills. But in order to grow the business, to a level that can sustain in a competitive environment, a good marketing plan is required. Not only a good marketing plan can secure a strategic position in the market, it can bring the business to greater heights.
Strategic Marketing is the art and science of acknowledging and determining what our current and future customers really need and want. In certain circumstances, the essence of knowing what can fulfil customers’ deepest desires in the absence of their own realisation is required so as to discover hidden problems or issues and to develop that particular product or services is what a marketer is able to do. Hence, marketing closes the hidden need gap.
Besides that, the concept of marketing is a dynamic concept where it has changed within the passage of time. This changes has effect on production and distribution where the rapid changes in tastes and preference of people happened. The marketing department needs to understand the new demand pattern and fulfil the needs accordingly (Chard, 2016). Other than that, being able to develop an effective integrated multi-channel marketing strategies where the customers are reached at different times in different ways can be seen as the result of synergistic efforts (Leventhal, 2005). Research believe that a mix of media for the targeted audience is the most successful marketing communication method.
According to Leventhal (2005), an effective marketing is targetted on customers in order to understand customers’ needs and wants and enhance the values respectively. Moreover, understanding who the competitors are is another important aspect so as to strengthen the company’s strength in order to build competitive advantage. Market orientation is able to enhance the performance of a company and increase its value to the customers.
Misconception of Marketing
Marketing often being misunderstood as function to advertise and promote products and services. And this leads to the idea that marketing approach is a cost for the company rather than an investment. Marketer’s role is not merely improving the brand of a company, but to identify various sources and techniques to reduce overall cost.
Marketing dilemma may exist before selling a product or a service to a customer. This may occur in the case of a marketer selling a flawed product (Meglio, 2016). A situation like this may make or break the life of a business. Telling consumers of the weakness of the product may result in drop in sales and thus affecting the image of a business as a whole. But business ethics must be applied. Hence, marketers should be honest and take actions immediately to prove the company’s allegiance towards its consumers.
Sheth and Shisodia (2015) posed two forms of marketing dilemmas; complying with the customers’ wants and not judging those wants. As consumers, we are well aware that not all of our wants are healthy as an individual or society as a whole. Yet, we crave for such ‘unhealthy’ products which are the root cause of the dilemma faced by marketers. They are forced to choose between satisfying the wishes of their consumers or by acting for the greater good. As Wirz (2012) puts it, there is ‘conflict of interest’. However, many companies have chosen to take the profitable route as evident in today’s modern world. A good example would be the sale of cigarettes by tobacco companies. It is no new thing that smoking can lead to fatal health problems like bronchitis or cancer, yet there is a steady production of tobacco-laden products to keep in line with the ever-growing demand of the community of smokers.
There is no definite answer to solving this dilemma, as there will always be consumers who have infinite needs and wants, which will ultimately go against the conscience of a responsible marketer. A solution suggested by Ulrich and Sarasin (2012) seems the most ideal in the long run, which is for companies to create better products and to educate
consumers in making better choices. As an illustration, the usage of durable paper bags and recyclable shopping bags in hypermarkets in Malaysia could solve the pollution problem caused by plastic bags. Although the ’20 cents for plastic bags on Saturday’ campaign supported by many companies is a good start, it is insufficient to change the plastic-bag lifestyle adopted by Malaysians in their everyday life. Hence, solving the marketing dilemma has to be a combined effort of both corporate and consumer alike; the former must be aggressive in their initiative while the latter must be fully supportive of said initiative.
Every day, there over millions of informations transmit to every consumers. These informations try to influence, encourage, impress consumers towards products or services. And yet, the human brain remains a finite organ that can only handle so much information. This persistent information overload is leading to an increased stress level in consumers, which in turn leads consumers to block many of the messages directed at them. In response to higher stress, consumers have changed their lifestyles and adopted technologies to filter out information. This uptick in filtration poses a challenge to the marketing industry, as it’s getting more difficult and more expensive for marketers to reach their desired audience. Therefore, marketers emphasize more on quantity instead of quality (Chong, 2002).
The Strike Between Marketing Importance and Marketing Dilemma
New Product Development
Customer support is an essential element in the successful marketing of many products-from domestic appliances to high-tech computer networks (Goffin & New, 2001). Many aspects of support are strongly encouraged based on the marketable aspect of such new ideas. A receint study reveals reveals that involving customers in the ideation and launch stages of NPD improves new product financial performance directly as well as indirectly through acceleration of time to market, whereas customer participation in the development phase slows down time to market, deteriorating new product financial performance (Chang & Taylor, 2016).
Internal Marketing adoption is anticipated to render employees more responsive to the delivery of service excellence. Internal marketing practices, like external marketing for customers, focus on needs and wants of the employees and fulfil them in such a way that the employees may be satisfied. The satisfaction of the employees with their jobs the internal marketing efforts of their management will lead them to perform better and exhibit their loyalty with the organization in form of organizational citizenship behavior (Ishaque & Shahzad, 2016).
In todays’ digital age, the way consumer interacts with other consumers as well as organization had changed dramatically. Benefited from social media development, online brand community had recognized as powerful alternative media that could contribute to overall brand success. Among others, online brand community could significantly affect brand evangelism or brand referral behaviors (Shaari & Ahmad, 2016).
With the growing interest in relationship marketing, a study was conducted to empirically examine the extent to which businesses use relationship quality perceptions to differentiate their qualified vendors. The findings support the notion that relationship quality is a higher-order construct that can be used as a basis for developing vendor stratification systems (Dorsch, Swanson, & Kelley, 1998). A recent study revealed that culture and relationship strength significantly and strongly influence each collaborative activity. The relationship strength fully mediates between collaborative culture and supply chain performance. The research also finds that the relationship strength partially mediates between collaborative culture and market-based information sharing, operational resource planning and sharing. In the long-term, collaborative culture drives relationship strength and the element enhances collaborative activities (Kumar et al., 2016).
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