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A Practical, Theoretical and Creative View of

 

Marketing

 

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54,080 Words On

A Practical, Theoretical and Creative View of Marketing

By David Alderoty

May, 2008

Phone (212) 581-3740

E-mail RunDavid@Verizon.net

Scroll down to read this e-book using the down arrow key or the mouse

 

This electronic book functions just like a conventional website, except most of it is contained in one very long webpage.  You can move to different sections of this long webpage, by scrolling up or down, with the arrow keys on the keyboard, or with the mouse.

The blue words, below, is a hyperlink table of contents.  Left click on any word and you will be taken to the corresponding section of the book.

This e-book also contains a large number of links that will take you automatically to various websites when you click on them, assuming you are connected to the Internet.  To return to this book, after viewing one of these websites, click on the left arrow  on the upper, left portion of your screen, one or more time, until you are back to the book.  Clicking on the left arrow can also return you to the table of contents, from various sections of the book.  

 

 

 

 

Table of Contents

2à Click on this hyperlink for sound file of the following. 32

About This Multimedia Electronic Book  32

BASIC INSTRUCTIONS. 32

A hyperlink table of contents. 32

The Chapters And Sections, In This Book Can Be Read In Any Sequence, They Are Written As Independent Units. 32

This Electronic Book Functions Similar To a Conventional Website. 34

LINKS TO WEBSITES AND SEARCH ENGINES  37

The Links in This Book. 37

The Book Is Linked To a Large Number of Websites  38

3à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 39

Chapter 1  Marketing a General View   39

DEFINITIONS AND BASIC CONCEPTS. 39

What Is Marketing?. 40

Are There Other Definitions Of Marketing?  43

Websites with Marketing Definitions, and Related Concepts. 44

4à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 46

MARKETS AND MARKET SEGMENTS. 47

What Is A Market?. 47

Understanding the Market 48

Websites on Understanding Your Market and Related Concepts. 49

5à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 50

What Is A Market Segment?. 51

A Note on the Relativity of a Market, and Market Segment 51

6à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 53

Chapter 2 the Size of a Business in Relation to Appropriate Marketing Techniques and Strategies. 53

MARKETING ACTIVITIES IN SMALL AND LARGE BUSINESSES. 53

Is There A Difference In Marketing Strategies Of Small And Large Companies?. 54

Many of the Techniques Discussed in Most Books on Marketing, May Not be Feasible for Individual Entrepreneurs, and Small Businesses with Limited Financial Resources. 55

A Useful Definition: Micro-Business. 58

A Method of Defining the Size of a Business, Which can be Useful in Assessing What Marketing Techniques are Appropriate. 61

Websites for Marketing Information for Micro-Businesses, Such as Individual Entrepreneurs, Mom-and-Pop Stores. 65

7à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 70

Chapter 3 Significant Markets and Market Segments, and Related Concepts. 71

WHAT IS A SIGNIFICANT MARKET OR MARKET SEGMENT?. 71

Is Race, Age, Social Class A Valid Way To Delineate A Market or A Market Segment?. 71

Culture: Markets, and Market Segments  72

Markets, and Markets Segments and Advertising  74

METHODS OF DELINEATING RELEVANT MARKETS AND MARKET SEGMENTS. 77

Are There Any Good Methods Of Defining Markets And Market Segments?. 77

Behavior: Buying Habits and History. 78

Delineating a Market or Market Segment Based on Needs. 79

Consumer Evaluations Methods to Delineate Relevant markets and Market Segments  80

Defining Market Segments in a Small Business  81

8à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 84

Chapter 4 the Marketing Mix, And Related Concepts. 84

THE MARKETING MIX, PRODUCT, PRICE, PLACE, PROMOTION. 85

The Concept of the 4 Ps, Product, Price, Place, Promotion. 85

The Product is Anything that can be Sold or Marketed. 86

The Price. 87

The Place: Where the Product Is Sold, the Distribution Outlets, the Methods of Moving the Product to the Place of Sales. 88

Promotion:  Any Type of Publicity, Advertising or Communication That Relates To Selling a Product 89

9à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 90

A CRITICAL LOOK AT THE CONCEPT: THE UTILITY AND LIMITATION OF THE MARKETING MIX, AND IT 4PS. 90

The Utility of The Concept 90

An Argument Against the Concept: The Marketing Mix, with the 4Ps, is Oversimplified Because there are Many Factors that Determine the Success of a Business, and the Marketability of its Products. 92

An Argument in Support of the Concept: The Marketing Mix is a Useful Concept, if you Think of the 4Ps as Categories, for the Huge Number of Factors that are Involved with Marketing  97

Conclusion. 98

Websites on Marketing Mix, And Related Concepts  99

10à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 102

Chapter 5 PRODUCT, IN RELATION TO MARKETING MIX. 102

Introduction. 103

A Highly Productive Strategy Is To Meet the Needs of the Consumers in Your Market 103

An Alternative Strategy Is To Search For Markets And Market Segments That Need Your Product, And Are Willing And Able To Pay For It. 105

The Idea To Keep In Mind Is The Product And Market Must Be Appropriate For Each Other. 106

11à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 108

Chapter 6 Price, In Relation To Marketing Mix. 108

Introductory Note. 109

Consumers Make Evaluations on Whether To-Buy or Not-to-buy, Partly Based on Price. 109

The Relationships of Price, Profit and Rate of Sales  111

How Should Products Be Priced: For the Maximum-Profit-Per-Unit, Maximum-Rate-Of-Sales, or the Maximum-Rate-Of-Profit?. 112

The Maximum-Profit-Per-Unit, (The Maximum Price That Can Be Obtained For a Product) Can Result In a Low Rate of Sales. 112

Under What Circumstances is a Pricing Strategy Based on the Maximum-Profit-Per-Unit, (the Highest Price that the Market Can Bear) Sensible and Profitable?. 114

Is Pricing A Product For The Maximum Rate Of Sales Always Profitable?. 116

When is Pricing a Product for the Maximum Rate of Sales (The Lowest Possible Price) Sensible?  117

Pricing a Product for the Maximum Rate of Profit, Often Involves Selling the Product at a Reasonable, But Not Excessively Low Or High Price. 118

To Clarify The Above Ideas, It Is Necessary To Explain What The Rate Of Profit Is In Mathematical Terms. 118

In Certain Situations Consumers Judge the Value and Quality of a Product by its Price. 120

The Pricing of New Products. 123

In Practice, You Must Determine the Actual Relationship Between Price, Profit, and Rate of Sales, That Applies to Your Market and Product so You Can Price the Product for the Maximum Rate of Profit. 124

12à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 125

Chapter 7 Place, In Relation To Marketing Mix. 126

Introduction. 126

The Product Should be Made Available in all the Localities Where there Are Enough Customers to Make a Profit 127

DISTRIBUTION CHANNELS AND RELATED CONCEPTS. 128

Methods of Distribution Include: Manufactures-Directly-To-Consumers, Wholesalers-To-Retailers-To-Consumers, Manufactures-To-Large-Retail-Outlets-To-Consumers. 128

The Internet as a Means of Distribution is Useful for Small Business Owners, and Certain Categories of Individual Service Providers, as well as Large Businesses. 130

SHIPPING PRODUCTS. 135

Shipping Products to the Right Place. 135

A Mathematical Formula to Evaluate Shipping Costs, Relative to the Price of the Product 137

13à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 139

Chapter 8 Promotion, In Relation To Marketing Mix. 140

Introduction. 140

ADVERTISING AND RELATED CONCEPTS  141

The Advantages Of: Advertising, As a Form of Publicity. 141

The Disadvantages of Advertising, As a Form of Publicity. 143

Websites on Advertising. 147

14à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 148

FACE-TO-FACE SELLING METHODS. 148

The Advantages of: Face-to-Face Sales Talk to Individual Consumers, as a Form of Publicity  148

The Disadvantages of: Face-to-Face Sales Talk to Individual Consumers, as a Form of Publicity  151

Websites on Selling and Salesmanship, and Related Concepts. 153

WORD-OF-MOUTH PUBLICITY. 154

The Advantages of: Word-of-Mouth Publicity  154

Positive Word-Of-Mouth Publicity. 155

The Disadvantages of: Word-of-Mouth Publicity  155

Websites on Word-Of-Mouth Publicity. 156

MASS METEOR PUBLICITY. 158

Introduction to Mass Meteor Publicity. 158

There are a Number of Ways of Deliberately Creating Publicity for a Company or Product 159

Parades, Fireworks Displays, Publicity Stunts and Other Techniques to Obtain Mass Media Publicity  162

The Primary Advantages of Mass Media Publicity  164

The Disadvantages of Mass Media Publicity  165

Avoiding or Minimizing Adverse Publicity  165

15à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 168

INTERNET PROMOTIONAL STRATEGIES  168

What Is The Difference Between Mass Media Advertisements, Versus Small-Scale Internet Promotional Strategies?. 168

Uploading Videos on Pre-Existing Websites  173

Websites on Internet Marketing and E-Commerce  176

16à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 178

Chapter 9 Organizational Functioning Can Affect Marketing, a Look at Environmental and Internal Behavioral Factors. 178

Introduction. 179

ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS. 180

Environmental Factors Involve Dynamics and Components of the External Environment, such as Weather, the Economy, And Political Policy, Etc. 180

Environmental Conditions Usually Vary Over Time Which Can Affect the Marketability of Products, and the Rate of Sales. 183

Expect Change: Create Marketing and Production Plans that are Appropriate for the Changes that are Likely to Occur. 184

Summing Up Environmental Factors. 187

INTERNAL BEHAVIORAL FACTORS. 188

Behavioral Factors of Management and Staff 188

Small business. 193

Adverse Behavioral Factors of Superiors Can Not Only Affect the Organization, it Can Also Affect Employees. 196

17à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 198

Chapter 10 Unusual Aspects of Marketing  198

INTRODUCTION. 199

What are Unusual Aspects of Marketing?  199

MARKETING AND BARTER. 201

An Introduction to Modern Barter 201

Barter Companies and the Techniques they Use  203

My Concluding Thoughts on Modern Barter 209

DEMARKETING. 215

What Is Demarketing. 215

THE MARKETING OF RELIGION. 220

THE MARKETING OF A POLITICAL CANDIDATE  225

Introduction to Marketing of Political Candidates  225

How is Marketing of a Political Candidate Different than Marketing other Products?. 227

Marketing Methods Used By Political Candidates  229

CHARITIES AND MARKETING. 232

Requests for Money by Charities for Adverse Conditions That Might Strike you and Your Relatives. 236

Requests for Volunteers by Charities. 237

Requests for Various Types of Items by Charities  238

Websites 0n the Marketing and Charities  239

18à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 240

Chapter-11: Object-Dynamic Model of Marketing, Involves: Objects, and their Dynamics and Mathematics. 240

A DESCRIPTION OF THE MODEL. 241

Introductory Note on This Chapter 241

Business and Marketing, and Everything in the Universe, Involve Three Fundamental Concepts, Which are Objects, Dynamics, and Mathematics  242

What Does Objects Mean, from the Perspective of the Object-Dynamics Model of Marketing?  242

What Does Dynamics Mean, From the Perspective of the Object-Dynamics Model of Marketing  243

What Does Mathematics Mean From the Perspective of the Object-Dynamics Model of Marketing?. 245

OBJECT-DYNAMICS MODEL OF MARKETING FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF LANGUAGE  247

The Three Components of the Model from the Perspective of language: Objects are Nouns, Dynamics are Verbs, and Mathematics relate to Questions. 247

THE UTILITY OF THE OBJECT-DYNAMICS MODEL OF MARKETING AND RELATED CONCEPTS  249

Mathematics, Predictions and Dynamics of Human Behavior, From the Perspective of the Object-Dynamics Model 249

The Utility of the Object-Dynamics Model of Marketing and Conceptual Models in General 251

Applying the Object Dynamics Model of Marketing  253

Questions to Evaluate and Improve the Dynamics (Actions and Activities) that Relate to Your Business and Marketing. 255

Miscellaneous Questions. 258

Websites on Conceptual Models of Marketing, and Related Concepts. 259

19à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 261

Chapter 12 Product Life cycle. 261

PRODUCT LIFE CYCLE AND RELATED CONCEPTS?  261

What Does Product Life cycle mean?. 261

1) The Initial Engineering of the Product 263

3) The Growth, in Terms of Increasing Rates of Sales. 266

4) Maturity, Where the Rate of Sales is Stabilized  267

Strategies to Deal with the Declining Stages of a Product 272

Concluding Ideas on the Concept of the Product Life cycle. 275

All of the Above Raises the Question: What is the Duration of The Fluctuations in the Rate of Sales, from the Time a Product is Introduced, Until it is Discontinued?. 277

Websites on the Product Life cycle. 278

20à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 279

Chapter 13 an Evolutionary Theory of Business and Marketing. 279

IN THIS CHAPTER I TOOK DARWIN'S THEORY OF EVOLUTION, MODIFIED IT, AND APPLIED IT TO BUSINESS AND MARKETING. 280

Introduction. 280

A *Note on Economic Viability. 282

A Selection Process Based on Economic Viability Which are Influenced by Various Selective and Competitive Forces in the Environment 283

The Evolutionary Selection of Traits (Methodologies, Techniques, Policies, Procedures, Managerial Philosophies and Styles, Etc.) in Relation to their Economic Viability. 285

Summing Up the Concept, and its Potential Utility  291

21-Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 293

Chapter-14 Marketing, Pricing, and Mathematics, and Related Concepts  293

SOFTWARE AND BUSINESS AND MARKETING CALCULATIONS. 293

Functioning Microsoft Excel Templates, and HTML/Javascript Programs are Available in this Book by Clicking on the Hyperlinks in the Following Two Subsections. 293

Microsoft Excel Can Be Used To Create Specialized Templates for Various Types of Business Calculations. 294

HTML/Javascript Programs can be Created to Perform Specific Types of Business Calculations  302

Websites on Software for Marketing and Business  305

22à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 307

THE CONCEPT OF RATE AS IT APPLIES TO BUSINESS AND MARKETING. 307

Introduction: Factors Involved With Pricing  308

A Commonsense Principle is the Amount of Money that a Product Costs to Manufacture, or Buy Wholesale, Usually Influences or Determines the Retail Price. 309

One of the Simplest Concepts of Pricing is: Selling Price Equals Profit Plus Manufacturing or Wholesale Costs. 311

Markups Based on the Percentage of Manufacturing or Wholesale Costs. 316

There are a Number of Factors that Influence the Level of Markup. 320

Unit Cost and Fixed Cost 323

A Note on Fixed Cost and Variable Costs, and Related Concepts. 324

Calculating the Breakeven Quantity and Determining an Appropriate Price for a Product 329

A Modification of the Breakeven Formula, to Calculate a Profit Greater than Zero. 334

A More Sophisticated Perspective on the Breakeven and Break-Even-Plus-Profit Formulas, In Terms of Rate of Sales and Rate of Expenses  337

THE CONCEPT OF RATE, AS IT APPLIES TO BUSINESS AND MARKETING. 348

The Rate of Transporting the Product to the Selling Outlets. 351

The Rate of Sales. 353

The Rate of Profit 355

The Rate of Loss. 358

Rate of Profit in Terms of Percentage of Investment or the Rate of Return on Investment 359

Calculating Profit and Rates of Profit for a New Business. 364

23à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 368

Chapter 15 Factors that Have a Tendency to Influence Pricing. 368

Initial Investments Can Influence Pricing, such as Cost for: Research and Development, to Set Up Production Facilities or Retail Outlets. 369

The Quality of the Product and Pricing  379

The Brand-Name Associated With the Product and Pricing. 380

The Location, or Market that a Product is Sold in Can Influence the Price that Consumers Will Pay  384

The Facility that a Product is Sold in Can Affect the Perception of Value, and the Price that Can be Charged. 387

The Price the Consumer is willing to Pay for a Product Can be Influenced by the Packaging  392

The Quantity and Quality of the Advertising Can Affect the Pricing of a Product 394

Competition Can Influence Pricing of a Product 397

Competition and Pricing in Relation to a Small Business. 399

Websites on pricing, marketing, and related concepts. 408

24à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 411

Chapter 16 the Pricing of Products that are Obtained from Nature. 411

Supply and Demand can determine or Influence the Price of a Product obtained from nature  412

Products from Hunting and Gathering, Farming, and Mining. 412

Raw Materials Come From Hunting and Gathering, Farming and Mining. 413

The Market Usually Controls the Price of Raw Materials Based on Supply and Demand and other Factors. 414

Products That Are the Result of Hunting and Gathering. 416

Products That Are the Result of Farming  419

Products That Are the Result of Mining  423

More Details about Supply and Demand, Formal Bidding, and Speculative Purchases, and Futures, that Involve the Products of Nature. 423

25à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 428

Chapter 17 the Marketing of Services, with a Focus on the Individual Service Provider 428

INTRODUCTION. 428

Skilled and Unskilled Service Providers  428

SERVICES ARE UNIQUE PRODUCTS. 429

There Are Many Important Differences between Services and Other Types of Products. 430

With a Few Exceptions, Service Providers Often Have a Market that is Limited to a Geographical Area. 431

UNSKILLED SERVICE PROVIDERS. 438

Why are Unskilled Service Providers Usually Paid Low Wages and Fees?. 439

MARKETING STRATEGIES. 441

Marketing Strategies for Individual Service Providers. 441

Facilitating Positive Word-of-Mouth Publicity and Maintaining Positive Relationships with Clients is an Excellent Marketing Strategy. 443

Emotional Factors, Including Compassion, Sympathetic Understanding, and Friendliness are Important for Obtaining Positive Word-Of-Mouth Publicity and Retaining Your Clients. 445

Good Relationships with Clients Can Reduce the Chances of Lawsuits and Getting Fired  447

Websites on Marketing Services and Related Concepts. 452

26à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 453

Chapter 18 Mass-Production, Versus Small Scale Production in Relation to Marketing  453

MARKETABILITY IN RELATION TO PRODUCTION METHODS IS A VERY IMPORTANT CONCEPT. 454

Introduction: Marketability in Relation to Mass Production, Versus Small Scale Production  454

What Is a Niche Market?. 458

The Concept of the Niche Market, without Mass Production, is Useful for Small Business Owners  462

A More Advanced Look at Production Techniques, which Ranges from Super Mass Production, to Hand Work. 465

Websites on Niche Markets, Production Techniques and Related Concepts. 473

27à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 475

Chapter-19 Evaluating Markets and Market Segments: Representative Samples, Data, Information, and Demographics. 476

A CONSUMER BASED MARKETING PHILOSOPHY  476

Satisfying the Needs of the Consumer 476

EVALUATING MARKETS AND MARKET SEGMENTS: PERIODIC ASSESSMENT OF A MARKET OR MARKET SEGMENT. 478

Introduction: Methods of evaluating. 479

Questionnaires. 479

Structured and Unstructured Interviews  481

Psychological Evaluations in Relation to Marketing  484

Which Set Should You Survey: a Representative Sample of the Market, or a Representative Sample of the Population?. 489

Assessments with Focus Groups. 492

A Simplified Version of a Focus Group for a Small Business?. 496

Test Marketing. 500

Websites on Market Evaluations and Related Concepts. 502

28à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 503

EVALUATING MARKETS AND MARKET SEGMENTS: ONGOING EVALUATION OF A MARKET, OR MARKET SEGMENTS. 503

What is Ongoing Assessment in Relation to Marketing?. 503

Computerized Cash Registers, that Scan Barcodes on Products. 504

Continuous Surveys. 506

Ongoing Assessment by Telephone Questionnaires and Interviews. 507

Ongoing Assessment with Questionnaires on the Internet 509

Ongoing Assessment Based on the Number of Sales from a Department or Salesperson  511

Ongoing Marketing Assessment of a Small Business  512

A REPRESENTATIVE SAMPLE OF INDIVIDUALS, TO EVALUATE A MARKET. 513

Introduction. 514

What exactly is a Representative Sample of a Market?. 514

What are Relevant and Irrelevant Demographics in Relation to the Evaluation of the Marketability of a Product?. 519

Evaluating the Correct Population, or Subgroups Within the General Population, to Determine the Marketability of a Product 523

What is Relevant to Your Market Evaluation, In Terms of Subgroups and Demographics?  528

DATA, AND INFORMATION, IS THERE A DIFFERENCE?. 530

DEMOGRAPHICS AND MARKETING. 533

What is Demographics. 533

What is More Important for Marketing in Relation to Demographics: the Average, Percentages, or the Total Numbers. 536

How Demographics Can be Used in Marketing  541

Erroneous Assumptions Based on Demographic Data. 545

Websites on Demographics and Related Concepts  545

29à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following: 547

USEFUL OR UNUSUAL WEBSITES ON MARKETING, BUSINESS AND RELATED CONCEPTS. 547

 

2à Click on this hyperlink for sound file of the following

About This Multimedia Electronic Book

 

BASIC INSTRUCTIONS

 

A hyperlink table of contents

The table of contents consists of hyperlinks.  When you left click on any word in the table of contents, it will automatically take you to the corresponding sections of this book. 

The Chapters And Sections, In This Book Can Be Read In Any Sequence, They Are Written As Independent Units.

The chapters in this book are essentially self-contained units or articles.  This means that you can read them in any order you choose, and you will probably understand them.  Most of the sections, WRITTEN IN CAPITALIZED UNDERLINED BOLD TYPE, within a chapter are also, more or less, independent units, and in most cases, you will probably understand them no matter what order you read them in.  The subsections, Written in Underlined, Italicize, Bold Type, May NOT always be understandable if you read them out of sequence.  However, if you already have some background in marketing, you will probably understand most of the subsections even if you read them out of sequence.

This Electronic Book Functions Similar To a Conventional Website

This electronic book behaves very similar to a conventional website, except most of it is contained in one very long webpage.  You can move to different sections of this long webpage, by scrolling up or down, with the arrow keys on the keyboard, or with the mouse. 

When viewing this book, you can use the exact same controls and techniques you use when you open any conventional webpage on the Internet.  This includes the arrow functions, on your upper left corner of your screen, which you see when you open your Internet browser.  

                        

                             

These arrows return you to locations on this document, or the Internet, that you hyperlinked to.  That is, when you left click on the left arrow it returns you to the section of this document, or to a webpage, that you were previously viewing.  The left arrow key moves you towards your original starting point.  When you left click on the right arrow it will reverse, any changes that were made that resulted from clicking on the left arrow.  The arrows are only functional when they turn blue.  All of this is the standard functionality that applies to most, if not all, websites. 

The backspace key, on the keyboard, essentially provides the same functionality as the left arrow.  You can use the backspace key to return to any section of this document that you were previously at, if you used hyperlinks.  The backspace key is especially useful when you view a webpage link to this document.  You can simply return to the document by pressing on the backspace key, one or more times.

The book opens in Internet Explorer version 5 or later, Netscape, Firefox, and other modern browsers.  However, the book and its components might NOT function optimally in some browsers if they do not have the ability to handle multimedia components, sound files, and JavaScript.

 

 

LINKS TO WEBSITES AND SEARCH ENGINES

 

The Links in This Book

This e-book contains a large number of hyperlinks, which are displayed in blue on most computers.  When you click on any of these hyperlinks, you will be taken to specific sections in this book, or to websites on the Internet, created by other authors.  In some cases, the hyperlinks will open files, calculating devices, Excel worksheets, folders, or sound recordings that are incorporated into this e-book.

The Book Is Linked To a Large Number of Websites

The book is linked directly, and indirectly, to millions of websites.  If a website link does not function, use the words next to the link as a search phrase.  Place the search phrase, in the same search engine that was used for the original search.  In most cases, this is listed on top of the list of websites, such as: Search phrase with Google:  

The search engines that were used to find most of the websites in this book are Google, Google scholar, and Yahoo.  You can access these search engines by left clicking on the following Web addresses:

 

http://www.google.com/,

 

http://scholar.google.com/schhp

 

http://search.yahoo.com/

 

 

3à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 1  Marketing a General View

                                             

DEFINITIONS AND BASIC CONCEPTS

 

 

What Is Marketing?

The most effective way of defining major terminology is to use one or more paragraphs, as opposed to a single sentence.  I am using this technique to define marketing in the following three paragraphs.

I am defining marketing as the set of activities involved with selling a product.  The activities include:

 

·       Creating and implementing a plan to sell a product 

 

·      The application of promotional strategies, such as advertising, and attempts to obtain free publicity from the mass media

 

·      Packaging

 

·      Distribution

 

·      Determining the optimum price for a product

 

·      Organizing, and managing a sales force

 

·      Face to face selling, carried out by sales personnel

 

·      Surveys to evaluate consumers buying habits and needs

 

·      Organizing and running focus groups to evaluate consumer’s opinions and emotional reactions to products

 

·      Designing or obtaining products that meet the needs of the consumer

 

·      Evaluating feedback (the results) of prior efforts to sell a product

 

·      And any other action that is used to sell a product.

 

The word selling has a general meaning in this definition.  It includes the exchange of goods and services for money, the services provided free by social service organizations, and the trading provided by barter companies.  (I will discuss barter companies later on in this book.)

The term product in the above definition means anything that can be sold, such as goods and services.  This includes items that are least or rented.  Transportation is also a product when it is offered for sale.  Any facility or geographical area that is advertised or requires rent or a fee to visit is also a product.  Bank loans, savings accounts, and credit cards are also products.  Even entities that are offered for free, by social service agencies, such as vaccinations, healthcare, and financial assistance are also products.  In general, any entity that can be offered by way of advertising, mass media publicity, or by direct selling methods is a product. 

Are There Other Definitions Of Marketing?

There are a large number of other definitions of marketing. However, most of them delineate approximately the same concept, as above, but with different words.  Many are less precise than the above definition.  However, some definitions express a specific marketing philosophy, or methodology, and they usually contain descriptions of marketing that is somewhat different than conventional definitions.  You can see all of this in the following list of websites.

Websites with Marketing Definitions, and Related Concepts

At the end of this paragraph, there is a list of websites that contain marketing definitions.  Some of these websites also contain a great deal of information on other aspects of marketing, as well as links to other interesting websites.

 

 

Search phrase with Google: What Is a Market?  http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=What+Is+A+Market%3F

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&defl=en&q=define:market&sa=X&oi=glossary_definition&ct=title Words on website: Definitions of market on the Web

 

http://www.knowthis.com/tutorials/principles-of-marketing/targeting-markets/what-is-a-market.htm        Words on website: Principles of Marketing what is a Market?

 

Search phrase with Google: Definition marketing http://www.google.com/search?q=Definition+marketing&hl=en&start=10&sa=N This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.bitpipe.com/tlist/Database-Marketing.html

Words on website: Database Marketing

 

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&defl=en&q=define:Marketing&sa=X&oi=glossary_definition&ct=title

Words on website: Definitions of Marketing on the Web

 

http://www.marketingpower.com/content4620.php

Words on website: What are the definitions of marketing and marketing research?

 

http://www.websitemarketingplan.com/marketing_management/marketing_change.htm

Words on website: The Definition of Marketing. Has It Changed?

 

http://www.marketingpower.com/mg-dictionary.php?SearchFor=marketing&Searched=1

Words on website: Dictionary of Marketing Terms

 

http://www.customerthink.com/blog/definition_marketing

Words on website: The Definition of Marketing         

 

4à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

MARKETS AND MARKET SEGMENTS

 

 

What Is A Market?

Market means the set of people and organizations who are consumers, or potential consumers of a product, or a product category.  The phrase product category in this definition means a set of products that are often sold by the same company, or retailer, such as hardware, groceries, furniture, clothing, sporting goods, etc. 

A market sometimes (but not always) can consist of most of the people in a geographical area.  An example is a grocery store that serves the people in a neighborhood.  A mail order list of individuals, who purchased camping supplies in the last two years is a market, for a camping supplies store that sells through the mail, even if the people on the list live all over the world.

Understanding the Market

A major challenge for a business is to understand its market(s).  This involves determining what population segments constitute a market for a specific product, or product category.  It also involves an understanding of all the factors that relate to selling the product(s) to the population segments that represent the company's market(s).  This can include many factors, including social, cultural, economic, and educational level of the consumers that comprise the market.  This concept will be discussed in more detail in various sections of this book.  You can also obtain additional information from the following websites.

Websites on Understanding Your Market and Related Concepts

 

Search phrase with Google Scholar How to evaluate and understand your market http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&lr=&q=How+to+evaluate+and+understand+your+market&btnG=Search This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=2V9FV6wQQ_AC&oi=fnd&pg=PR11&dq=How+to+evaluate+and+understand+your+market&ots=pTxgx5Ce08&sig=b898P5Ss1Fzy9sNOH7Z_koZRUEY Words on website: The Discipline of Market Leaders: Choose Your Customers, Narrow Your

 

Search phrase with Yahoo Search: How to evaluate and understand your market

http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=How+to+evaluate+and+understand+your+market&fr=yfp-t-501&toggle=1&cop=mss&ei=UTF-8

 

http://pandecta.com/market.html Words on website: Market Research Tutorial  How To Understand Your Customers

 

The following website contains a large amount of useful information, which will probably be valuable to students, entrepreneurs, and sales managers. http://www.innovators.net/entrepreneur_resources/estimate.html Words on website: University of North Dakota  Estimate Market Potential

5à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

What Is A Market Segment?

A market segment is a subset of consumers within a market that have certain similarities, especially in relation to the potential or actual purchase of a product, or product category.  For example, a market segment for a supermarket is housewives with babies that live close enough to shop at the store.  This market segment can be significant to the supermarket, because it provides the opportunity to sell supplies, such as disposable diapers, and baby food. 

A Note on the Relativity of a Market, and Market Segment

The concept of market, and market segment in some cases might be unclear, or blurred.  These concepts are essentially relative concepts.  For example, if you have a group of consumers in a geographical area that are likely to be interested in your product, you can consider that a market.  If you divide this group into two segments, based on two sets of characteristics based on the purchase of your product, you have two groups of consumers, group-A and group-B.  In this case, group-A and group-B can be defined as market segments.  However, if you were initially selling your product to group-A only, this group would be your market (market-A).  If you eventually discovered that group-B would be interested in your product also, if you advertise in Spanish, then you found another market for your product, which is market-B.

Because of the relative nature of the terminology, you can consider the terms market, and market segment as interchangeable, in relation to some of the topics in this book.    

6à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 2 the Size of a Business in Relation to Appropriate Marketing Techniques and Strategies

 

MARKETING ACTIVITIES IN SMALL AND LARGE BUSINESSES

 

Is There A Difference In Marketing Strategies Of Small And Large Companies?

Of course, marketing efforts do not always involve all of the activities mentioned in the definition at the beginning of chapter 1.  The marketing activities that are used by some businesses, are few in number, and are carried out in a simplified and informal way.  This is usually seen in very small businesses, such as individual entrepreneurs, and mom-and-pop stores.  The owner, and employees, might use intuition, casual observations of customer behavior, conversations with customers, the selling rate of various products, instead of formal market evaluations and surveys.  Advertising might be limited to displays of products in the store window, and signs. 

Large businesses are more likely to engage in most of the activities listed in the definition of marketing (presented in the beginning of chapter 1).  They usually have the financial resources needed for formal market surveys, test marketing, focus groups, and advertising in the mass media.  These activities might not be cost-effective for a small business, but they often are for large companies.

Many of the Techniques Discussed in Most Books on Marketing, May Not be Feasible for Individual Entrepreneurs, and Small Businesses with Limited Financial Resources

Most of the course material, books, websites and research that I have encountered on marketing and business do not deal with small businesses.  Even when small businesses are mentioned, I have found that after reading for a while, it becomes apparent they are talking about businesses that have 40 to 500 employees.  From the perspective of the huge organizations, such as Fortune 500 companies, businesses with 40-500 employees are relatively small.  However, businesses with 40 to 500 employees, often involve millions in investment, and starting a business of this size is out of the reach of many Americans.

The Small Business Administration considers a manufacturing facility with 500 or less employees as a small business.  They also consider a wholesale business (“Wholesale Trade”) with 100 employees or less to be a small business.  They have their own criteria to evaluate the size of a business.  If you want to see the details involved with their definition left click on the following hyperlink, which will take you to a Small Business Administration webpage http://www.sba.gov/services/contractingopportunities/sizestandardstopics/summarywhatis/index.html

A Useful Definition: Micro-Business

When we talk about small business, we need some precise terminology and definitions.  I have found precise terminology, at a number of websites, including http://usgovinfo.about.com/library/weekly/aa120201a.htm.  Instead of using the term small business, better terminology is micro-business, which means a business with five or less employees.  However, I am modifying this definition, to make it even more precise, as follows.  A micro-business is a business with five or less employees, with salaries and profits totaling less than one half million dollars a year.  I provided this modification because there are some businesses with five a less employees that produce tens of millions of dollars in profit a year.  For example, famous movie stars, expert business consultants, and, top level professional athletes, essentially have a small business, marketing their services, which may result in many millions of dollars of profit each year.  It is necessary to distinguish this from mom-and-pop stores, and two-person partnerships, and tiny family-owned businesses that usually have very limited financial resources.  These limited resources will greatly limit their marketing strategies. 

No doubt, micro-businesses are somewhat limited in terms of marketing when compared to larger businesses.  There is simply much more that can be done in large businesses.  They usually can afford to spend millions on experimenting with various aspects of product development and marketing.  Risking a few million in such experimentation may not be much of a problem for a large company, even if the results are not always fruitful.  Even businesses with 40 to 500 employees may spend hundreds of thousands a year on new marketing campaigns. 

Probably because of the above, there is more research and information on large businesses, then on micro-businesses.  Good techniques and scientific research for micro-businesses are lacking.  Techniques and research are needed that can be used by individual entrepreneurs, mom-and-pop stores, and small partnerships, that cannot afford a team of marketing experts. 

However, the above does not imply that there is no information, or help for micro-businesses.  Three paragraphs below, there are a list of websites that provide information and assistance for individuals that operate, or want to start, micro-businesses.  In addition, some of the techniques used in large businesses, can be modified in various ways to make them useful for micro-businesses.  I attempt to do this in some of the sections of this book, when it is feasible.

A Method of Defining the Size of a Business, Which can be Useful in Assessing What Marketing Techniques are Appropriate

The above discussion suggests some interesting ideas on marketing, in relation to the size of a business.  As implied in the previous discussion, the size of a business can be very ambiguous.  The best way to define size (in my opinion) is in terms of the profits, and salaries paid to employees.  That is the sum of the profits and salaries equals the size of the business, with this assessment method.  For example, a small business owner, who employs one individual, for $40,000 a year, and makes 50,000 a year in profit, would have a $90,000-per-year- business.  If an individual, sets up a stand on the city streets, during the weekends, makes $5,000 a year in profit, she would have a $5,000-per-year-business.  This method can also be used when a business did not make a profit, or when there is a net loss at the end of the year, by just calculating the salaries paid to employees.  This method can be used to estimate the amount of money that can be invested in new marketing strategies, such as marketing assistance from experts, advertising, test marketing, etc.  For example, 10% of the yearly gross of profits and salaries might be a reasonable investment for new marketing strategies.  A $90,000-per-year-business might be able to risk $9,000 a year on new marketing strategies.  This can be, an additional expenditure, over the regular marketing budget of a company.

There are of course many other methods, in addition to the above, of assessing the size of a business.  Some of these methods can be seen at the following websites.

 

Search phrase with Google: "Business size" http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=%22Business+size%22+

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.wikitextbook.co.uk/index.php/Measuring_business_size  Words on website: The market share of the business The level of sales turnover  The number of employees  The value of the business  The value of capital employed 

http://www.census.gov/epcd/www/smallbus.html Words on website: Statistics about Business Size (including Small Business) from the U.S. Census Bureau

 

Websites for Marketing Information for Micro-Businesses, Such as Individual Entrepreneurs, Mom-and-Pop Stores

The following list of websites provides information, as well as various forms of assistance for micro-businesses.  This includes expert advice, financial assistance, and bank loans.  The exact information and services provided will differ with each of these websites.

 

Search phrase with Google: Micro-Businesses http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Micro-Businesses&btnG=Search 

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

The following website and related organization, (NYC Business Solutions) is very useful.  They offer free classes, for starting and/or operating a small business.  (I have taken some of these classes, and they provide interesting and useful information.)  NYC Business Solutions also offers some individual business advice.  They provide information on various types of business loans, including where, and how they can be obtained.  They also provide information on legal requirements and licensing for businesses in New York City. http://www.nyc.gov/html/sbs/nycbiz/html/home/home.shtml Words on website: NYC Business Solutions

 

http://www.sba.gov/ Words on website: Programs and services to help you start, grow and succeed

 

http://www.business.gov/  The following list of topics is from this website:

Info on Popular Business Topics

Find Small Business Grants and Loans

Choose a Business Name (DBA/Fictitious Name)

Start a Home-Based Business

Obtain Tax Information and Forms

Get Started in Government Contracting

Learn Ten Steps to Hiring a New Employee

 

http://usgovinfo.about.com/library/weekly/aa120201a.htm Words on website: American business with five or fewer employees will now have access to training and technical assistance to help them start or grow under a new program funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

 

http://www.smallbusiness.com/wiki/Microbusinesses  Words on website: A microbusiness is generally defined as a small business employing fewer than five persons.

 

http://www.nase.org/  Words on website: National Association for the self-employed

 

http://www.consumer-action.org/english/articles/micro_business_basics_english/

Words on website: Micro Business Basics

 

http://answers.google.com/answers/threadview?id=508349  Words on website: Micro-Businesses

 

The following website is an e-book that is over 300 pages.  This book might take a minute or two to load with some systems.

 http://srdc.msstate.edu/publications/194.pdf Words on website: HOME-BASED & MICRO BUSINESSES RESOURCE DIRECTORY

 

http://www.4ql.co.uk/  Words on website: Helping Micro Businesses Use the Internet

 

Search phrase with Google: "U.S. government" Micro-Businesses  http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=%22U.S.+government%22+Micro-Businesses This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

 

http://www.isquare.com/newsletter_archives/apr98.cfm

Words on website: A subscription to The Small Business Advisor Newsletter is free.

 

http://www.consumer-action.org/english/articles/micro_business_leaders_guide/ Words on website: Micro Business - Leader’s Guide

 

Search phrase with Google: Micro-Businesses in New York http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Micro-Businesses+in+New+York This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

Search phrase with Google: “Marketing strategies" for Micro-Businesses

http://www.google.com/search?q=%E2%80%9CMarketing+strategies%22+for+Micro-Businesses&hl=en&start=0&sa=N This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.speakingandmarketingtips.com/Small-Business-Marketing.html Words on website: A Monthly Newsletter About Small Business Marketing Strategies

 

http://www.dartmouth.edu/~jzinman/Papers/Zinman_Pro-Poor%20Growth%20&%20Microfinance_Apr05.ppt

Words on website: Pro-Poor Growth & Microfinance: Some Related Evidence, and a Research Agenda

 

http://articles.in/?caid=Computers-and-internet.27547

Words on website: Internet Marking for Micro Business

 

Search phrase with Google: Small business help http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Small+business+help&btnG=Google+Search

 

http://www.score.org/index.html

Words on website:  Ask score for business advice

 

 

7à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 3 Significant Markets and Market Segments, and Related Concepts

 

 

WHAT IS A SIGNIFICANT MARKET OR MARKET SEGMENT?

 

 

Is Race, Age, Social Class A Valid Way To Delineate A Market or A Market Segment?

Sometimes, seniors, Afro-Americans, Caucasians, Orientals, and people in different age groups, and social classes are considered markets, or market segments.  However, this might represent a meaningless set of consumers, in relation to the purchase of a specific product.  This is likely to be the case when stereotypical assumptions are used, as opposed to scientific methods of evaluation.  Thus, the above categories may or may NOT relate to a difference in purchasing habits, or the need for a specific product.

Culture: Markets, and Market Segments

However, markets and market segments based on culture can be quite meaningful and significant.  That is a set of consumers that share the same culture might represent a significant market or market segment, in relation to the potential or actual purchase of a product.  For example, Orientals might not represent a meaningful market segment for a product, but people who retained their Oriental culture might be a significant market segment.  The reason for this is people often purchase items that relate to their culture.  This can include food, clothing, religious articles, and many other items.  It can also include books, magazines, and newspapers that relate to the culture.  This is especially the case when the culture involves a foreign language.

When a market or market segment comprises people that speak a language other than English, it might be necessary to hire salespeople that speak that language, and ideally share the same culture as the customers.  Advertising will have to be written in the foreign language, with an understanding and sensitivity of the culture of the potential and actual consumers.  This is especially the case when the customers live in foreign countries. 

Markets, and Markets Segments and Advertising

The concept of a market, or market segment, can be useful when creating advertisements.  This can involve creating a number of advertisements, for the same product, or product category, aimed at different markets, or market segments.  For example, if you are selling computers, you can create advertising for non-technical people, and a different set of advertisements for technicians.  We can use culture as another example.  If you are selling a product to two or more cultural groups, you can create advertising aimed at each cultural group.  This involves understanding the cultures, and it may also require advertisements in foreign languages. 

For more information see the following websites

 

Search phrase with Google: “Marketing and culture” http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=%E2%80%9CMarketing+and+culture%E2%80%9D&btnG=Google+Search  This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.marketingteacher.com/Lessons/lesson_international_marketing_culture.htm Words on website: International Marketing and Culture what is the influence of culture on international marketing?

 

http://jmk.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/27/2/138  Words on website: Here, There, and Everywhere: Place Branding and Gastronomical Globalization in a Macromarketing Perspective

 

http://books.google.com/books?id=zZxVj01q2CgC&pg=PA8&lpg=PA8&dq=%22marketing+and+culture%22&source=web&ots=vcqtC08liG&sig=9Kt-7yTZL8NUywufk7Ki-Lfbk5I
 Words on website: Hispanic Marketing: A Cultural Perspective

 

http://www.marketingteacher.com/Lessons/answer_international_marketing_culture.htm  Words on website: Answer - International Marketing and Culture. A Cultural Analysis of China.

 

http://www.aeaconsulting.com/site/platform1i5b.html  Words on website: Nobrow: The Culture of Marketing - The Marketing of Culture

 

http://www.studyoverseas.com/america/usaed/crosscultural.htm Words on website: Marketing in the 21st Century  Cross-cultural Issues

 

http://books.google.com/books?id=uqlaJHhIwSIC&pg=PR11&lpg=PR11&dq=%22marketing+and+culture%22&source=web&ots=K-DxN2NJ6w&sig=DV3CBILQVg6Sx1TnTX-w8hqwDcc

Words on website: Handbook of Cross-Cultural Marketing By Paul A. Herbig

 

METHODS OF DELINEATING RELEVANT MARKETS AND MARKET SEGMENTS

 

 

Are There Any Good Methods Of Defining Markets And Market Segments?

The previous paragraphs suggest the question: What is the best way to define a market or market segment?  I discussed this in the following paragraphs.

Behavior: Buying Habits and History

The ideal way to define a market, or market segment, is to base it on the history of purchases made by a set of consumers.  For example, if you have a mailing list of technicians who frequently purchased high-end computer equipment, you can consider that a market, or market segment, which would be relevant to a computer supply store.  Essentially, this involves defining a market or market segment based on the purchasing behavior of a set of consumers. 

Delineating a Market or Market Segment Based on Needs

You can also delineate a market or market segment, by understanding the needs of a set of consumers.  For example, you can consider farmers a market, or market segment, if you sell heavy machinery, such as tractors, and plows, because they need this equipment.  You can also consider construction companies a market, or market segment, because they use tractors and other heavy equipment.  That is heavy equipment is needed in both the farming and construction industries. 

We can also use a culture as an example, for delineating markets and market segments based on needs.  If people from a specific culture or subculture have a special need for a specific product, you can consider that a relevant market or market segment, for the product.  This is assuming of course that the people comprising the culture have the willingness and financial means to buy the product.

Consumer Evaluations Methods to Delineate Relevant markets and Market Segments

There are a number of evaluation methods, based on interviews and surveys that are used to evaluate consumer needs, preferences, and emotional responses to products.  (These methods will be discussed in detail in a separate chapter Evaluating Markets and Market Segments.)  Some of these methods include demographic evaluations, surveys, interviews, focus groups, and various types of psychological testing.  Results from these evaluation methods, can sometimes be useful in delineating markets and market segments.  They can also provide erroneous results, which might not be noticeable, until the inadequate rate of sales is apparent.

Defining Market Segments in a Small Business

In a small business, the owner might simply observe the behavior of her customers.  She may notice that approximately half of her customers regularly purchase products X and Y.  I will call these consumers the X, Y, customers.  The X, Y, customers can be defined as a relevant market segment, for our hypothetical business owner.  The business owner can study the purchasing behavior and needs of the X, Y, market segment, by observation.  She can also study the market segment, with face-to-face conversations with the X, Y-customers, to determine if they have needs for products that are not currently sold in the store. 

That is, if you are a small business owner, it is necessary to become sensitive to the needs, preferences and emotional responses to your customers, and to respond accordingly.  The greater your sensitivity to your customers, and your ability and willingness to respond to their needs and preferences, the greater will be your chances of developing and maintaining a successful business.  This involves observation of your customers purchasing behavior, and face-to-face conversations to determine their needs.

Another good strategy for the small business owner is to try to develop acquaintanceships with potential customers.  This involves finding consumers that are not customers, and having discussions with them, to determine their needs and preferences, in relation to the products you sell.  Providing potential customers, after the discussion, with a substantial discount coupon, worth at least five or $10, might convert them into permanent customers.

 

 

8à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 4 the Marketing Mix, And Related Concepts

 

 

THE MARKETING MIX, PRODUCT, PRICE, PLACE, PROMOTION

 

 

The Concept of the 4 Ps, Product, Price, Place, Promotion

There are many factors that relate to the marketing process, four of the most important are the product, the price, the place, and promotion.  In the marketing literature, this is known as the 4Ps.  It is more useful to think of the 4Ps as four general categories, because there are many factors, and the huge amount of information that relates product, the price, the place, and promotion.  An entire book can easily be written on each of these concepts.  I have written four separate chapters that follow this one, on product, price, place, and promotion, as well as a number of discussions about these concepts throughout the book.  In this chapter, I provide a relatively brief description of the 4Ps.

The Product is Anything that can be Sold or Marketed

For a product to be successfully marketed it must meet the needs of the consumers.  More precisely, the consumers must perceive the need, utility, and advantages in buying the product.  For a business to succeed, it is necessary to obtain products that meet the needs of its market(s), as perceived from the point of view of the consumers.  Alternatively, a company can search for markets and market segments that need its products.

The Price

The price of a product for a profit-making organization must be high enough to make a profit.  However, the price of a product generally must be at a level that is perceived as appropriate by the consumers.  Generally, when consumers make purchases, they consciously or unconsciously weigh the value of the product, against its price.  Often, the lower the price, the greater the sales volume will be, but this is not always true.  Sometimes, a low a price conveys to consumers inferior quality.  With luxury items, a low a price might reduce the status, or snob appeal, of the product, which might reduce the rate of sales.

The Place: Where the Product Is Sold, the Distribution Outlets, the Methods of Moving the Product to the Place of Sales

Products must be sold where they are needed, and where there are consumers that are willing and able to pay for it.  This by itself can determine the success or failure of a product.  Some products are sold by the manufacturer directly to the consumer.  This is especially the case for handcrafted items, created by small businesses.  However, most products are sold from the manufacturer to a large retail outlet, such as a department store, or to a wholesaler.  Wholesalers generally sell their merchandise to small and medium-size retailers. 

The method of shipping and the cost of shipping can be very significant with large objects, especially if they are relatively inexpensive.  Shipping costs are less important for small lightweight items, especially if they are relatively expensive.

Promotion:  Any Type of Publicity, Advertising or Communication That Relates To Selling a Product

The most obvious example of promotion is advertising.  However, there are other types of promotion, such as face-to-face sales talk to individual consumers, word-of-mouth publicity, and mass meteor publicity.  Mass media publicity is obtained when companies provide news releases, about the organization or its products.  Publicity stunts, parades, and fireworks are additional methods that are sometimes used by large retailers, to obtain publicity.

 

9à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

A CRITICAL LOOK AT THE CONCEPT: THE UTILITY AND LIMITATION OF THE MARKETING MIX, AND IT 4PS

 

The Utility of The Concept

The concept of the marketing mix has utility in planning marketing strategies, and creating marketing plans.  That is the way the four components, (product, price, place, promotion) are configured can determine the degree of success or failure of a business and its products.  It is sometimes possible to rectify a failing business, by manipulating the 4Ps, in various ways.  When a product is not successful, manipulating price, place, and promotional strategies, can increase sales and profit, sometimes.  By manipulating product, price, place, and promotion it is sometimes possible to make an already successful business or product even more successful. 

The questions to consider when managing a business is how are the 4Ps affecting profits?  Can product, price, place, and promotion be modified to produce a greater rate of profit?  How are the 4Ps affecting sales volume?  Can product, price, place, and promotion be manipulated to increase the rate of sales? 

 

An Argument Against the Concept: The Marketing Mix, with the 4Ps, is Oversimplified Because there are Many Factors that Determine the Success of a Business, and the Marketability of its Products.

It can be argued that the concept of the marketing mix is an oversimplification.  I present such an argument in the following paragraph, which is followed by a counterargument under the next subheading.

Marketing involves a large number of factors, and the 4Ps involved with the marketing mix concept is an oversimplification.  This becomes obvious, if you examine the contents of this book, and the website links it contains.  Marketing is an extremely complex subject that involves psychology, sociology, economics, organizational behavior, management theory, culture, methods of production and distribution, as well as various aspects of the law.  In some cases, the economy and even the weather can determine the level of sales of a product. From the above, a very large number of factors can be obtained that relate to marketing.

It is important to understand that there are factors that are unique to a specific company and its products.  The unique factors can determine the success or failure of a business, and the marketability of its products.  For example, sometimes the personality and knowledge of a CEO can be the primary factor in determining the success or failure of a company.  The physical and mental health of the CEO, and/or other top managers, can also have a significant impact on the success or failure of the company.  This applies to both small and large organizations, but it is probably more significant with small businesses. 

Unique factors that apply to some products are unpredictability of the price and availability of raw materials needed in the manufacturing process, parish ability, and risks of lawsuits.

The concept of the marketing mix and the 4Ps do not deal with any of the above factors.  Thus, it should be apparent that the concept does not deal with a large number of other factors that relate to marketing and business.

The oversimplified concept of the marketing mix and its 4Ps, are probably useful for students that are studying marketing.  However, the oversimplified concept might lead to financial disasters for some companies, when such students become marketing managers and executives.  This can happen because CEOs, managers, and business owners are not necessarily experts on marketing.  They may be experts in other fields, and they may have forgotten, or never learned, that the marketing mix is an oversimplified concept.

For additional criticisms on the concept of the marketing mix, and the 4Ps, see the following websites:

 

http://www.artrm.com/retail/marketing-mix.htm  Words on website: There are two types of criticisms leveled at the marketing mix: criticism of the concept of the marketing mix, and criticism of particular examples of marketing mix models (for example the four P's).

 

http://techtics.co.uk/8.html Words on website: Criticism of the 4Ps ‘Marketing Mix’ Model

 

http://www.businessknowledgesource.com/marketing/the_criticisms_of_a_marketing_mix_approach_to_marketing_025228.html Words on website: The criticisms of a marketing mix approach to marketing

 

http://www.reference.com/browse/wiki/Marketing_mix Words on website: Marketing mix

 

 

An Argument in Support of the Concept: The Marketing Mix is a Useful Concept, if you Think of the 4Ps as Categories, for the Huge Number of Factors that are Involved with Marketing

When the components of the marketing mix concept, product, price, place, and promotion are used as general categories, the concept is not oversimplified.  When used in this way, you compile and assess all the relevant factors that relate to the functionality of a business, and the marketability of its products.  Then you can divide the factors into the four categories: product, price, place, and promotion.   This involves placing each factor under the closest matching category.  When necessary, some additional categories can be included with the 4Ps, such as miscellaneous, fixed costs, production costs, environmental factors, etc.  Categories can also be added for personality and health factors of management, and staff if that is affecting the company.  

Conclusion

When the concept of the marketing mix, is used as described above, its 4Ps does not limit thinking, creativity and problem-solving.  However, if the marketing mix concept is used as a four step formula, in a real business, it might lead to financial disaster.

Websites on Marketing Mix, And Related Concepts

Below there is a list of websites that provide additional information on the marketing mix and other aspects of marketing and business.

 

Search phrase with Google: “Marketing mix” http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=%E2%80%9CMarketing+mix%E2%80%9D&btnG=Google+Search  This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marketing_mix Words on website: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia  The marketing mix is generally accepted as the use and specification of the 4 Ps describing the strategic position of a product in the marketplace.

 

http://www.netmba.com/marketing/mix/  Words on website: Marketing Mix (The 4P’s of Marketing)

 

http://www.quickmba.com/marketing/mix/ Words on website: Marketing Mix

 

http://www.marketingteacher.com/Lessons/lesson_marketing_mix.htm Words on website: The marketing mix is probably the most famous marketing term.

 

http://www.valuebasedmanagement.net/methods_marketing_mix.html Words on website: Marketing Mix 4P’s model

 

http://www.marketingmixblog.com/ Words on website: Small Business Summit in NY 

 

http://marketing.about.com/od/marketingplanandstrategy/a/marketingmix.htm Words on website: Developing Your Marketing Mix

 

http://www.thetimes100.co.uk/theory/theory--marketing-mix-(price-place-promotion-product)--243.php  Words on website: Marketing mix (Price, Place, Promotion, Product)

 

http://www.consultancymarketing.co.uk/marketing-mix.htm Words on website: Marketing mix

 

http://www.themarketingsite.com/live/mmix/index.php?

Welcome to Marketing Mix, South Africa's premier magazine for marketing professionals. 

 

http://www.copernicusmarketing.com/consult/e.shtml

Words on website:  Applications of the Copernican Discovery™ Marketing Mix Model

 

http://www.bized.co.uk/learn/business/marketing/mix/index.htm

Words on website:  Theory Explanations and Notes

 

Search phrase with Google: Place, in Relation to Marketing Mix

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Place%2C+in+Relation+to+marketing+Mix This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.bized.co.uk/educators/16-19/business/marketing/activity/mix.htm

Words on website: The marketing mix is the combination of elements that frame the marketing strategy for a company in relation to their products and services, in order to help them achieve their marketing objectives. Traditionally, the marketing mix has focussed on four elements: Price Product Promotion Place

 

http://www.marketingmixblog.com/blog/publicitypr/index.html Words on website: Marketing Mentor

 

http://www.thetimes100.co.uk/theory/theory--the-extended-marketing-mix-(7ps)--319.php Words on website: The extended marketing mix (7Ps) 

 

http://www.thetimes100.co.uk/theory/theory--marketing-mix-%28price-place-promotion-product%29--243.php Words on website: Marketing mix (Price, Place, Promotion, Product)

 

 

10à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 5 PRODUCT, IN RELATION TO MARKETING MIX

 

 

Introduction

The product is anything that is sold, including any type of goods or services.  The product must meet the needs of a set of consumers that are able and willing to buy the product.  In some cases, the consumers are not expected to pay for the product, but they generally must do something to obtain the product, and/or meet certain eligibility requirements.  Examples are free vaccinations provided by public health agencies, and assistance provided for the poor by charities and social welfare agencies. 

A Highly Productive Strategy Is To Meet the Needs of the Consumers in Your Market

A very important principle that applies to any type of product is it must meet the needs and emotional desires of the consumers in your market.  This involves designing, manufacturing, packaging, pricing and selling products to meet the needs and emotional desires of a specific set of consumers.  The above can be summed up by asking yourself: What do the consumers need in my market area?  After answering this question, supply products that meet the market needs.  I explain an approach just the opposite of this in the next paragraph.

An Alternative Strategy Is To Search For Markets And Market Segments That Need Your Product, And Are Willing And Able To Pay For It.

Sometimes, manufacturers and sellers are in a position to choose their markets and market segments.  When this is the case, the correct markets and/or market segments can be chosen for the product.  This can involve asking the question: What are the correct markets and market segments for my goods or services.  This question can simply be restated as: What groups of consumers need my product, and are able and willing to pay for it?  This can suggest the need to conduct searches and experimentation to find the optimal markets and market segments for a product.  This approach is quite feasible, especially with the Internet and other modern technologies.  It is possible to find markets and market segments that need a product in any location in the world, if the product can be delivered at a reasonable cost.

The Idea To Keep In Mind Is The Product And Market Must Be Appropriate For Each Other.

Often, the very value of a product is determined by the needs, values, philosophy, culture, and perceptions of the people comprising a market.  A product that has little value, or cannot be sold at all, in one market, might have substantial value in another market.

Regardless of the market or market segments, the perception of the product in the minds of the consumers is very important.  That is, the consumers must perceive the need, utility or advantage in having a product, if we want them to purchase it.  That is the perception of the product in the mind of the consumer is a primary factor. 

To maximize the perceived quality and utility of a product, you should target appropriate market segments, produce a quality product, that is needed by the consumer you are targeting.  Services that are provided in relation to the product are also very important, such as sales assistance, exchange or refund policies, technical support, warranties, and repair service.  In addition, you should inform, educate and persuade the consumers within the targeted market segments about the benefits and utility of the product. 

 

11à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 6 Price, In Relation To Marketing Mix

 

 

Introductory Note

There are a large number of factors that are involved with the pricing of a product.  Some of the material on pricing involves mathematics, and it is presented in a separate chapter.  This chapter focuses on pricing from the concept of marketing mix.  Some of this information is not presented in the chapter that deals with pricing from a mathematical perspective.

Consumers Make Evaluations on Whether To-Buy or Not-to-buy, Partly Based on Price

The price of a product is usually very important.  When most consumers examine a product, they probably consciously or unconsciously evaluate the utility, pleasure, and emotional satisfaction, in owning the product, against the price of the product.  This involves an evaluation of the benefits or gain by purchasing the product, and the loss, (the expenditure of money) represented by the price of the product.  Spending money on one product often results in a financial inability, or decision not to purchase another product.  At some level, spending money involves a sacrifice for most consumers, except perhaps for the very wealthy, and the higher the price the greater the sacrifice.

The Relationships of Price, Profit and Rate of Sales

Generally, the higher the price the greater the profit will be per-unit, but the total profit may or may not be greater, than with a lower price.  When all other relevant factors are maintained at the same level usually the higher the price the lower the sales volume will be, and vice a versa.  This relationship certainly does not always hold true.  For example, lowering the price of a luxury product might convey a lower quality product.  It might also reduce the emotional satisfaction associated with buying an expensive product that is intended for wealthy and successful people.

How Should Products Be Priced: For the Maximum-Profit-Per-Unit, Maximum-Rate-Of-Sales, or the Maximum-Rate-Of-Profit?

Question, if you are operating a business, which of the three pricing strategies, stated in the above subheadings do you think is appropriate for your products and goals?  The three strategies are discussed in the following paragraphs.

The Maximum-Profit-Per-Unit, (The Maximum Price That Can Be Obtained For a Product) Can Result In a Low Rate of Sales

     The maximum profit per unit, (or the maximum price that can be obtained for a product) generally means a very high price.  However, this may not be very profitable, because very few units may be sold.  For example, if a supermarket raised its prices to a level that was several times higher than the competition, it would make a very high profit on each product that it sells.  However, this would probably result in a very low rate of sales, and the money obtained from sales would probably be inadequate to cover the fixed costs of running the supermarket, such as for salaries, rent and insurance.  This could result in financial losses.

Under What Circumstances is a Pricing Strategy Based on the Maximum-Profit-Per-Unit, (the Highest Price that the Market Can Bear) Sensible and Profitable?

When a large number of consumers want to buy a product, but the product is available in very limited numbers, the most profitable strategy would be to sell the product at the highest price that can be obtained.  However, this pricing strategy may require more time and effort to sell the product, but in certain situations it is a very sensible pricing strategy.  For example, famous artworks are generally one-of-a-kind, and they are usually sold at the highest price that can be obtained for the product.  When you are selling only one, or perhaps a few units of a product that hundreds, thousands or millions of consumers want to purchase, the rate of sales is generally not important.  Any extra time and effort to sell the product, is usually offset by the financial gain obtained, when seeking the maximum obtainable price.

The above concept also applies to services of famous people.  They can usually sell their services at the highest price the market can bear.  This is because there time is limited, and there services represent a product that is very limited in quantity, and is in very great demand. 

Is Pricing A Product For The Maximum Rate Of Sales Always Profitable?

     Products can be priced for the maximum rate of sales, which is generally a very low price.  When this is done the result can be a small profit, or a financial loss.  In general, the rate of sales, does not always relate to the rate of profit.  Thus, maximizing the rate of sales by reducing prices may not be very profitable.  There are many other methods of increasing sales that are usually quite profitable.

When is Pricing a Product for the Maximum Rate of Sales (The Lowest Possible Price) Sensible?

Pricing a product very low to maximize the rate of sales is sensible when the goal does not involve a profit.  For example, public health agencies provide low-cost or free vaccinations to prevent disease.  The low price or free vaccine will most likely maximize the number of people who get vaccinated.  Another example, is selling a product at a very low price, to attract new customers to a store.  This is generally called a loss leader, such as selling bread below the wholesale cost, to attract customers to a supermarket.  

Pricing a Product for the Maximum Rate of Profit, Often Involves Selling the Product at a Reasonable, But Not Excessively Low Or High Price.

In many situations the higher the price, the lower the rate of sales will be, and the lower the price, the higher the rate of sales.  In between these two extremes, there is usually a medium price that will result in a medium rate of sales, but a maximum rate of profit.

To Clarify The Above Ideas, It Is Necessary To Explain What The Rate Of Profit Is In Mathematical Terms.

Rate of Profit is the amount of profit that is obtained divided by time.  For example, if you had a computer supply shop, and you sold 10 computers in one month, and obtained $100 profit on each computer, you earned 10 times 100 which is $1000.  To obtain the rate of profit, the $1000 is divided by one month, which equals a rate of profit of $1000 per month.  However, if you sold the 10 computers in 10 months, your rate of profit would be $1000 divided by 10 months, which is a rate of profit of $100 per month.  Now let us assume you sold the 10 computers at a discount, and you only earned $50 on each computer.  However, if you sold the computers in one quarter of a month, your profit would be $50 multiplied by 10 which equals $500.  To obtain the rate, the $500 is divided by one fourth of a month, which is a rate of profit of $2000 a month.  If the price of the computers in the above example were increased, so the profit was $300 on each computer, if you only sold five computers in a month, your profit would be $300 multiplied by five, which is $1500.  Dividing $1500 by one month equals a rate of profit of $1500 per month. 

Sometimes lowering the price increases the rate of profit, and at other times raising the price increases the rate of profit.

In Certain Situations Consumers Judge the Value and Quality of a Product by its Price

Sometimes consumers simply judge the quality of a product by its price.  This is more likely to be the case when the consumers do not have other ways of judging the product, such as when they do not have adequate product information, or needed technical knowledge to make a judgment.  Thus, in some cases, lowering the price of a product might result in convincing the consumer that the product is of lower quality and value, and this can sometimes result in a decrease in sales.  This is more likely to be the case with luxury items, when a high price of a product conveys social and economic status. 

Perhaps the best strategy is to emphasize the quality of the product, and the high social status that it conveys in advertisements, especially if the selling price is reduced.  However, with luxury products that are primarily intended for very wealthy consumers, reducing the selling price, even during a sale might be counterproductive.  With some luxury products, the best strategy may be to increase the price, and provide additional services with the product, to justify the price increase.  For example, increasing the price of a top-of-the-line luxury car, and providing a 6 year unconditional service contract on the vehicle, might increase the rate of sales and profit.  Another alternative is to increase the quality of the luxury product, during the manufacturing process, which can justify a price increase.

The Pricing of New Products

     Introducing new technologies with relatively high prices is a common strategy.  Manufactures often do this with new electronic devices and medications.  This might be quite sensible, because the manufacture is trying to recover research and development costs.  In addition, products in this category may be in short supply when they are first introduced.  After, a period of time the manufacture may reduce the prices.  This can range from weeks to months, for electronic products, and sometimes years for medications.  Generally, products in this category must be reduced in price when competitors develop similar products.  However, price reductions are usually quite feasible when more efficient production methods and facilities are created for technology-based products.  

     New products that are relatively inexpensive, such as laundry detergent, toothpaste, and soap might be introduced into the market at a reduced price.  This can involve coupons to obtain a partial refund, and labels on the product that indicate a temporary price reduction, such as $0.50 off.

In Practice, You Must Determine the Actual Relationship Between Price, Profit, and Rate of Sales, That Applies to Your Market and Product so You Can Price the Product for the Maximum Rate of Profit.

The idea to keep in mind is that there are various theoretical relationships between price, profit, and rate of sales.  However, in actual practice there is no fixed or absolutely predictable relationship between these factors that can be generalized to all situations.  It is necessary to determine the relationships between price, profit, rate of sales, and rate of profit, in each situation, such as by test marketing, or informal trial and error.  When such relationships are determined you can price the product for the maximum rate of profit.

 

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Chapter 7 Place, In Relation To Marketing Mix

 

 

Introduction

Where and how a product is distributed can determine its success or failure.  For product to succeed it must be ultimately delivered to the location where there are consumers that are interested in purchasing the product.  This may or may not involve specific geographical locations of retail selling outlets.  For example, delivering luxury items to stores that cater to upper class and wealthy people throughout the country involves specific geographical locations.  However, selling such items with mail order catalogs, and/or through the Internet, does not involve bulk shipments to a store. 

The Product Should be Made Available in all the Localities Where there Are Enough Customers to Make a Profit

The important idea to keep in mind is to be certain that the product is presented to consumers that will most likely be interested in making a purchase.  This can involve shipments to specific geographical locations, and/or advertisements focused on specified localities.  However, it does not matter if this involves a physical place, a series of geographical locations, or cyberspace on the Internet.  The important idea is simply to target segments of consumers that are likely to be interested in purchasing the product, by making the product available in all the right places. 

 

 

DISTRIBUTION CHANNELS AND RELATED CONCEPTS

 

 

Methods of Distribution Include: Manufactures-Directly-To-Consumers, Wholesalers-To-Retailers-To-Consumers, Manufactures-To-Large-Retail-Outlets-To-Consumers

Another important concept is the method of distribution to the consumer.  This can involve a manufacture selling large quantities of the product to wholesalers, who in turn sell it to appropriate retailers.  However, another way of distributing products to the right place, where consumers are likely to make a purchase, is to sell directly to large retail outlets, such as department stores, and chain stores.  The Internet and mail-order methods of distribution can often be used to distribute goods directly from the manufacturer to the consumer.  However, often the Internet and mail-order sales involve a large retailer, who purchases directly from the manufacturer.

The Internet as a Means of Distribution is Useful for Small Business Owners, and Certain Categories of Individual Service Providers, as well as Large Businesses.

The Internet as a method of distributing products is potentially very useful for both small and large businesses.  It is especially useful for distributing and selling products that are in a digital format, which can be downloaded from a website to any computer in the world.  Products in this category include software, e-books, music, videos, and anything else that can be recorded in the digital format.

The Internet is also potentially useful for selling and distributing certain types of services that involve the production of software, spreadsheets, documents, technical reports, and graphics.  This includes services of computer programmers, engineers, mathematicians, writers, news reporters, graphic artists and photographers that work in a digital format.  With all of these examples, the end result of the services can be transmitted through the Internet by e-mail, or by downloading from a website.  Such material can also be returned to the service provider for modifications or corrections by the above methods. 

Transmitting any type of digital media through the Internet is very inexpensive.  Transmission by e-mail is free.  Placing material on a website for downloading is sometimes also free, and when there is a charge it is usually a relatively small charge for a large amount of websites space.  However, setting up a website can be expensive, if you need professional assistance, but if you can do the work yourself, it is inexpensive.

The Internet is also a place where physical objects can be sold throughout the world.  This involves taking orders for products through the Internet.  The products are generally paid for over the Internet when the consumer enters a credit card number.  The products are shipped to the consumer by mail, UPS, FedEx, or similar shipping providers.

The disadvantage with selling physical objects through the Internet is of course the shipping costs.  In addition, the products must be carefully wrapped to prevent damage while shipping, but this applies to all the other distribution methods to varying degrees.

An important concept to understand about the Internet is it is not necessarily a form of mass communication, like television or radio.  Many people simply do not understand this, and may mistakenly think that websites are a form of mass communication.  That is, a website on the Internet is in a certain sense similar to a telephone number.  Everybody in the world can call the phone number. Obviously, this does not happen, unless the telephone number is extensively advertised worldwide, and a useful product is obtainable by calling the number.  The same idea applies to a website.  If a useful product is sold through the website, and large sums of money are invested in advertising, the website might in fact become a form of mass communication, with tens of thousands of visitors each month.  This is likely to happen with large retail outlets that have established a positive reputation in the minds of millions of consumers.

 

 

SHIPPING PRODUCTS

 

 

Shipping Products to the Right Place

The shipment of products can be expensive.  However, when a product is expensive, and weighs very little, such as gold jewelry, and diamonds, the transportation costs may not be very significant.  With products in this category, the transportation cost is a relatively small percentage of the price of the product.  However, just the opposite is the case, with products that are relatively inexpensive, and heavy and/or bulky.  Some products in this category are fruits and vegetables, gasoline, crude oil, coal, and iron ore.  With products in this category it is necessary to use the most economical transportation methods that are feasible.  This usually involves transportation by ships or freight trains.  When necessary, trucks may be used, but they are generally more expensive than the above. 

Many consumer products are in between the two extremes mentioned above.  For example, computers, books, clothing, are not very heavy, and they are generally moderate in price, relative to transportation costs.  With products in this category, transportation costs can be a moderate, but significant, amount when compared to the price of the product.  For example, a textbook that cost $50 might have a five dollars shipping fee, which represents 10% of the cost of the product.

A Mathematical Formula to Evaluate Shipping Costs, Relative to the Price of the Product

A good way to evaluate shipping costs relative to the price of a product is with the following formula.  In words it is: Shipping cost divided by the price of the product multiplied by 100% equals the percentage of the price of the product for shipping. 

Some examples will illustrate how this formula can be used.  Let us assume, you have a $100,000 diamond that weighs a half a pound when wrapped in heavy protective wrapping, and to ship it with insurance it is $50.  If we use the above formula, we obtain the following:  100% times $50 divided by 100,000 equals 0.05% of the selling price.

The calculated result of 0.05% is a very small percentage of the cost of the product, the diamond.

 

If we were shipping a desk that cost $100 and it cost $50 to ship, the calculations would be 100% times $50 divided by $100 equals 50% of the selling price.

 

In this case the shipping cost is 50% of the cost of the product, the desk, which is quite high.  

 

The important idea to understand here is that it is necessary to use the cheapest shipping methods with products that are inexpensive and heavy, and the safest shipping methods with products that are very expensive, such as diamonds.

 

13à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 8 Promotion, In Relation To Marketing Mix

 

 

Introduction

Promotion can be thought of as a method of communicating to consumers, and persuading them to purchase a product.  I am dividing promotion into five categories, for this chapter, which are advertising, face-to-face sales talk to individual consumers, word-of-mouth publicity, mass meteor publicity, and internet promotional strategies.  These promotional methods are discussed under the following headings.

 

 

ADVERTISING AND RELATED CONCEPTS

 

The Advantages Of: Advertising, As a Form of Publicity

The seller has almost complete control over advertisements, which is not the case with other forms of publicity.  They can present their products in just about any way they see fit, as long as they are not making claims that violate the law.  They can discuss the advantages of their product, and they usually do not have to discuss the disadvantages, unless they are selling a product that requires such disclosure by law.  They can emphasize, and even exaggerate the superiority of their products.  They can present their products surrounded by attractive imagery and sounds.

The seller can repeat the advertisements as many times as he chooses.  Advertisements can also be presented in multiple formats, such as television, radio, newspapers, magazines, flyers, direct mail, and the Internet. 

Advertising can be carried out in an economical way by distributing flyers, in geographical locations where there are potential customers.  Advertising in a small local newspaper, or the use of signs can also be used to target a specific locality.  Using advertisements in specific types of newspapers and magazines can be used to target specific types of consumers.  For example, if you are selling professional level camera equipment, you can advertise in photography magazines that are written for photographers. 

With advertisements you can create ads for each market segment. For example, if you are selling computer equipment, you can create one ad for teenagers, another for adult users, and another for technicians. 

The Disadvantages of Advertising, As a Form of Publicity

In spite of its advantages, advertising has many disadvantages over other methods of promoting a product.  The disadvantage of advertising is it is usually expensive, and most consumers are justifiably suspicious of most advertisements.  They realize that a manufacture or retailer is generally trying to make money, by persuading them to buy a product.  Most, consumers are confronted with a large number of advertisements each day, as a result they learned to ignore advertising. 

Advertisers might be wasting their money in some cases, as a result of all of the above.  In general, the value of advertising might be far less than most people think.  When an advertisement from a large company is not cost-effective, the management may be unaware of it.  For example, if they spend $30,000 on a large sign in Times Square, they may have no way of knowing if it increased sales enough to recover the $30,000.  The same problem can apply to other types of advertising, at least in some cases, including television commercials.

The reason large companies might have great difficulty in determining which advertisements a cost-effective, is because they have many advertisements, and publicity from many sources. They can of course measure changes in the rate of sales, but they might not have any precise way of knowing what caused an increase in sales.  For example, a soft drink company may notice an increase in the rate of sales, but they may not be able to determine if it is the result of a television advertisement, a series of newspaper ads, or excessively warm weather. 

All of the above does not apply to very small companies, such as micro-businesses.  That is when a small business advertises, it is usually relatively easy to determine if the advertisement was successful.  The small business owner can ask any new customers a few questions to make a determination. 

Providing discount coupons with an advertisement can sometimes be used to determine if the promotional effort is increasing sales.  This is simply done by counting the number of coupons that were redeemed for the discount.  This method can work for both small and large companies.

 

Websites on Advertising

 

Search phrase with Google: Advertising http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Advertising&btnG=Search

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.advertising.com/index.php Words own website: Advertising.com

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advertising

Words own website: Advertising from Wikipedia

 

https://adwords.google.com/select/Login?sourceid=awo&subid=na-en-ha-aw_syn_content&medium=ha&term=%7Bkeyword%7D

Words own website: Advertise your business on Google

 

http://www.adgridwork.com/  Words own website: adgridwork is a Free Advertising Network and Text Link Exchange

 

http://www.interbath.com/ Words own website: Internet Based Advertising Theory

 

http://www.ciadvertising.org/student_account/fall_00/adv382j/christiana/theory/banner.html Words own website: Advertising on the Web

 

http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1467-8616.1996.tb00111.x Words own website: Business Strategy Review

 

http://university-essays.tripod.com/advertising.html Words own website: Guide on How to Write University Essays, Courseworks, Assignments and Dissertations

 

 

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FACE-TO-FACE SELLING METHODS

 

 

The Advantages of: Face-to-Face Sales Talk to Individual Consumers, as a Form of Publicity

The sales talk of a salesman or saleswoman is no doubt more personal than advertising.  Under, ideal conditions, the salesperson tries to evaluate the needs of the consumer, and suggest products that will satisfy those needs. 

The use of skilled sales personnel will probably be most successful, when products are relatively expensive and complex, such as computers, high-end electronic equipment, automobiles, trucks, boats, industrial equipment, and new technologies.  Consumers buying products in this category often need assistance, to learn how the product works, its utility, its limitations, and how to use it to satisfy their needs.  This information can be provided by other means, but this may not increase sales.  If the consumer is unsure about many aspects of the product, he or she may simply not buy the product.  A salesperson can, focus on the individual needs and uncertainties of each consumer.  This involves a feedback process, which allows the salesperson to use language that the consumer understands.

Good sales personnel will also avoid disappointing consumers.  This involves revealing product limitations when such information is relevant, and informing the consumer when a product cannot satisfy their needs.  From the seller's point of view, all of this is important, because a disappointed or unsatisfied consumer can lead to return of products, bad word-of-mouth publicity, the loss of a regular customer, and even lawsuits.

The Disadvantages of: Face-to-Face Sales Talk to Individual Consumers, as a Form of Publicity

Sales personnel can sometimes be an annoyance to consumers, and they might be counterproductive in some cases, especially if they are not highly skilled.  In some situations, the salesperson knows little about the products that are being sold in the store.  You can often find this situation in large department stores and discount stores, which probably cannot afford to hire highly skilled sales personnel.  Good salesman and saleswomen are expensive, and maybe only cost-effective when very expensive products are sold.  The expense of hiring skilled sales personnel is probably the biggest this advantage of face-to-face sales techniques.

Unlike advertising, the owner or manager of a selling outlet do not have total control of what sales personnel tell consumers.  Under less ideal conditions, the salespeople may be focusing on their need to make a sale, and provide the consumer with inaccurate or deceptive information.  This can involve attempts to persuade the consumer to buy unneeded products, which can lead to returns of merchandise, conflict with customers, adverse word-of-mouth publicity, and other problems. 

 

Websites on Selling and Salesmanship, and Related Concepts

 

Search phrase with Google: Salesmanship http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Salesmanship&btnG=Search

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

 

http://www.central-station.com/sales.htm Words own website: BASIC SALESMANSHIP

 

http://www.dmoz.org/Business/Marketing_and_Advertising/Salesmanship/Education_and_Training/ Words own website: Top: Business: Marketing and Advertising: Salesmanship: Education and Training

 

 

 

WORD-OF-MOUTH PUBLICITY

 

The Advantages of: Word-of-Mouth Publicity

One of the major advantages of word-of-mouth publicity is believability.  That is information about a product that is transmitted by friends, family, and acquaintances is probably more likely to be believed in most cases, than information conveyed by advertising or sales personnel.  Another advantage is sometimes word-of-mouth publicity can cost little or nothing.  However, positive word-of-mouth publicity is usually obtained with an investment of both money and effort to satisfy customers.

Positive Word-Of-Mouth Publicity

Positive word-of-mouth publicity about a product is the result of satisfied consumers.  Usually this requires an investment in producing a good product, and providing good services with the product.  Honest and helpful advertising and sales personnel can facilitate positive word-of-mouth publicity.  Leaflets that provide advertisements with useful information, in adequate detail, might be helpful in facilitating positive word-of-mouth publicity.  This can work when satisfied consumers give leaflets to their friends and relatives.

The Disadvantages of: Word-of-Mouth Publicity

One of the disadvantages of word-of-mouth publicity is lack of control, by business owners and managers.  That is the word-of-mouth publicity can be negative.  In some cases it can involve the transmission of unfairly negative or inaccurate information about a product, or a retail outlet.  It can also sometimes be expensive and difficult to establish positive word-of-mouth publicity, because to do so often requires paid advertisements, to educate the consumers about a product.  This might include expensive advertising campaigns, as well as high quality products, sold at relatively low prices.

 

Websites on Word-Of-Mouth Publicity

 

Search phrase with Google: Word-of-mouth publicity http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Word-of-mouth+publicity&btnG=Search

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Word_of_mouth Word of mouth From Wikipedia

 

http://www.adendum.com/search_engines/word_of_mouth.htm

Words on website: Word of mouth, publicity

 

http://www.internetbasedmoms.com/word-of-mouth/

Words on website: Word of Mouth Marketing

 

http://101publicrelations.com/blog/_how_to_create_word_of_mouth_in_print_000145.html Words on website: How To Create "Word of Mouth" In Print

 

Search phrase with Google: “Word-of-mouth marketing” http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=%E2%80%9CWord-of-mouth+marketing%E2%80%9D&btnG=Search

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://womma.org/wom101/  Words on website: An Introduction to Word of Mouth Marketing

 

 

MASS METEOR PUBLICITY

 

Introduction to Mass Meteor Publicity

Mass meteor publicity is obtained when the news media, publishes a news story about a company or its products.  Mass media publicity can sometimes also be obtained when a television show or motion picture, uses a product as a prop or mentions the name of a product, or the company that manufactures or distributes it.  For example, when a brand name automobile, or a well-known brand of soda, are used as props in a television or movie video, millions of consumers will see it surrounded by movie stars and other positive imagery.  When retail stores, vacation spots, and hotels are used to film television and movie videos, publicity may result for the facilities.  The publicity can be favorable or unfavorable, and the company involved does not have direct control over the publicity.

There are a Number of Ways of Deliberately Creating Publicity for a Company or Product

Often companies deliberately create publicity about their products by submitting news releases to the mass media.  This can be an effective strategy, but it is necessary to provide information that is newsworthy.  If the information released has minimal news value, it may be ignored by the news media, or it may be reported at a minimum level, such as in a tiny article in the last pages of a newspaper. 

Skillfully creating material for mass media publicity can sometimes be a highly effective strategy to sell a product.  There are many ways that this can be done.  Companies that produce new technologies, often have information of value to the news media, every time they create a new product.  This especially applies to drug companies that create new medications, which sometimes results in major news stories.  However, even less dramatic information released by a business can be newsworthy, and it may be reported to at least some degree.  For example, opening a new selling outlet, especially if it involves a celebration, can result in at least some mass media publicity.  This may even work to some degree when a small business is opened, which might result in a news story in a small local newspaper.

Providing goods or services for free, or at a very low course, can sometimes get some publicity from the news media.  This is especially the case for nonprofit organizations.  However, this usually will result in a tiny article, or a few words in a section of the newspaper that is devoted to freebies. 

Parades, Fireworks Displays, Publicity Stunts and Other Techniques to Obtain Mass Media Publicity

The general principle involved with obtaining publicity is to attract attention of the news media and the public, in relation to a company or its products.  This can be done many ways, as will become apparent in the following paragraphs.

Various types of celebrations can be used to obtain publicity, such as parades, fireworks displays, and large parties especially if celebrities attend. A good example of publicity with parades and fireworks, involves Macy's department store.  Macy's carries out Saint Patrick day’s parades and Fourth of July fireworks displays each year.  This is seen by many millions of people, in person and on television throughout the United States.  With these events, the name of the organization, Macy's is repeated constantly by the news media.  This simply serves to increase the level of awareness of Macy's department store.   Whether or not the elaborate parade and fireworks are cost-effective, in terms of increasing sales, is perhaps questionable.  That is, it may or may not be cost-effective, but Macy's is a very large company, and this might not be much of a concern.

A publicity stunt is another way of obtaining publicity.  This basically involves an unusual activity, behavior, or interesting or dangerous stunt.  The publicity stunt must be carried out in a way that it brings public attention to a company or its products. 

The Primary Advantages of Mass Media Publicity

The primary advantages of mass meteor publicity are it is free, but there can be indirect expenditures involved.  Another advantage is consumers are probably more likely to believe mass media, then advertisements or sales talk.  With certain types of mass media publicity, the concept of believability is not even relevant, because the publicity transmit names and images of the organization and/or its products.  Good examples of this are parades, fireworks displays, and publicity stunts, all of which can be used to increase public awareness about a product or company.

The Disadvantages of Mass Media Publicity

The primary disadvantage of publicity is it can be negative, or even extremely negative.  The company that obtains publicity has no direct control the statements from mass media.  The mass media can interpret or misinterpret information released by the company, and they can emphasize or over emphasize problems with products.

Avoiding or Minimizing Adverse Publicity

Large organizations often have public-relations departments, and other internal control mechanisms to avoid or minimize adverse publicity.  However, in certain situations it can be unethical or unlawful to conceal information from the public that would result in adverse publicity.  For example, when a company discovers a dangerous defect in their product, they are obligated to release this information to the public.  Often, the best strategy is to minimize or reduce the damage from adverse publicity.  This might involve giving honest explanations to the public, and publicizing any relevant corrective action.  For example, when an industrial accident occurs, with this strategy, explain how the accident occurred, and publicizing the corrective action that are to be taken to prevent accidents in the future.

Websites on Mass Media Publicity

 

Search phrase with Google: How to obtain free mass media publicity  http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=How+to+obtain+free+mass+media+publicity&btnG=Google+Search

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.e-zinez.com/handbook/media1.html Words on website: The Handbook of Ezine Publishing

 

http://www.digital-women.com/media-publicity.html Words on website: Media Publicity and How to Get It

 

Search phrase with Google: “How to write a news release” http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=%E2%80%9CHow+to+write+a+news+release%E2%80%9D

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.barbarabrabec.com/CraftsMarketing/write_a_news_release.htm  Words on website: How to Write a News Release–and Where to Send It

 

http://www.russpage.net/utah-jazz-show-how-to-write-a-news-release/  Words on website: Utah Jazz show how to write a news release

 

 

15à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

INTERNET PROMOTIONAL STRATEGIES

 

What Is The Difference Between Mass Media Advertisements, Versus Small-Scale Internet Promotional Strategies?

To answer this question, I will first explain what mass media advertising is on the Internet.  Mass media advertising strategies on the Internet are more or less similar to other media, such as newspapers and television.  For example, if a well-known department store, such as Wal-Mart, or Macy's, creates a website this would represent a mass media advertising strategy, because hundreds of thousands of people throughout the world would most likely visit the website.  This is especially the case if the website is advertised on television, and in newspapers.

However, the Internet is not a true mass media format, like television, magazines and newspapers.  A website on the Internet is more or less similar to a telephone number.  Theoretically, everyone in the world can call the number, but generally this does not happen.  Even if you have a listed telephone number, you will most likely obtain very few phone calls, except from your friends and family.  The same idea applies to a website on the Internet.  Unless it is advertised you will have very few visitors, except perhaps from your friends and family.

However, the Internet can be used by small and large companies in a number of ways with a focus on small groups of consumers.  Many small groups of consumers can add up to relatively large numbers.  There are a number of techniques that are useful with this type of advertising, and I am calling these techniques small-scale Internet advertising strategies. 

The most obvious small-scale Internet advertising strategy is ideal for small businesses, and it involves setting up a website.  A website of this kind will not attract hundreds of thousands, like Macy's or Wal-Marts websites.  However, this becomes a productive strategy when the regular customers are informed of the website, and when the website is publicized along with advertisements for the products sold by the business.  The website can have pictures of inventory, and a method of payment with credit cards.  The above, is a very obvious technique, and at this point it is essentially common sense. 

Another technique is to obtain free or low-cost advertising on a pre-existing website.  However, there are often limitations on the type of advertisement that may be allowed, especially if it is free.  Some of these sites might not allow a business to advertise.  See the websites on the end of this section for examples. 

There are of course advertisement outlets that charge a moderate to high fee, which may or may not be cost-effective.  One of the best examples is Google, where advertisements are displayed in search results.  See Google advertising https://adwords.google.com/select/Signup1/index.html  Another example is the website below, which provides advertising services for a number of search engines. http://www.wpromote.com/quicklist/landing/?gclid=CNfbxZSy8JICFRCCGgodFjlk4g 

Uploading Videos on Pre-Existing Websites

One of the most interesting Small-scale Internet marketing techniques that I have seen is involves upload videos on one of the Internet video sharing sites, such as YouTube.  This is generally free in most cases.  There are two ways that the video can be constructed for this type of advertising.  One is to have an entire video that discusses a product or service.  This is likely to work well, if the product that you are selling is interesting.  The video does not necessarily have to directly indicate that you are selling anything.  For example, if you are selling your professional services, such as law, psychotherapy, medicine, interior decorating, you can simply create videos that deal with problems that relate to your discipline, and upload them.  This is especially useful for video sites that do not allow free commercials.  When this is done you of course must provide adequate contact information, such as your phone number, the address of your place of business, your e-mail address, and if you have a website your Web address.

Another way that Internet videos are used for advertisements on the Internet is similar to a conventional television commercial, but of course in most cases you will be dealing with a relatively small numbers of viewers.  In most cases this service probably requires a substantial fee.  This technique is even being used by some large companies, but they often choose websites that have very large audiences, such as www.CBSnews.com.  The following is one of their videos with the commercial.  http://www.cbsnews.com/sections/i_video/main500251.shtml?source=nav_video.  This video may or may not remain available for an extended period of time, but there are many other videos on www.CBSnews.com with commercials.

Another method that is obvious is to use e-mail.  However, this technique will probably not be very effective if mass numbers of e-mails are sent out indiscriminately.  E-mail might be effective if people request information on a website, or they request information about a product on the phone, or through e-mail.

 

Websites on Internet Marketing and E-Commerce

 

Search phrase with Google: Internet Marketing http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Internet+Marketing&btnG=Google+Search This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Online_marketing Words of website:  From Wikipedia

 

http://homebusiness.about.com/od/marketingadvertising/a/IMarketing101.htm Words of website: Internet Marketing 101

 

Search phrase with Google: How to set up websites for e-commerce http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=e-commerce&btnG=Search

This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 


Search phrase with Google: How to set up websites for e-commerce

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=How+to+set+up+websites+for+e-commerce This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

 

 

http://www.managementhelp.org/infomgnt/e_cmmrce/e_cmmrce.htm  Words of website: Basic Guide to E-Commerce (Doing Business Over the Internet/Web)

 

http://www.websitesource.com/articles/ecommerce-five-steps.shtml Words of website: Five Steps to Ecommerce 

 

 

Search phrase with Google: Free advertising on the Internet http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Free+advertising+on+the+Internet&btnG=Search This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

 

http://www.inetgiant.com/ Words of website:For Free Ads, Free Classifieds, Free Advertising

 

http://www.ad2go.com/  Words of website: Directory of Free Advertising and The 1,000 Free Advertising Project 

 

 

16à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 9 Organizational Functioning Can Affect Marketing, a Look at Environmental and Internal Behavioral Factors

 

 

Introduction

All businesses, including profit and nonprofit organizations are affected by environmental factors, as well as internal behavioral factors.  All of this can affect the entire functionality of a business, the quality of its products, and the ability to market products successfully.  Environmental factors and internal behavior factors will be discussed under the following two headings.

 

 

ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS

 

Environmental Factors Involve Dynamics and Components of the External Environment, such as Weather, the Economy, And Political Policy, Etc.

Environmental factors involve dynamics and components that the organization usually has little or no control over.  Some examples are the weather, war, the functioning or malfunctioning of the economy, and the laws of the nations they are dealing with.  Various types of trends and styles are also examples of environmental factors. 

Some large companies can sometimes influence some environmental factors, but usually to a very modest degree.  For example, some companies can influence fashion trends for clothing styles.  Sometimes large companies can influence some of the political factors of a nation.  This was probably more significant in the past, when a large company would dominate a small nation. However, the strategy that is usually most practical when dealing with environmental factors is to adjust to them, in such a way that it maximizes the goals and profitability of the organization.

Sometimes even adverse environmental factors are financially lucrative for an organization, especially if it makes appropriate adjustments.  For example, war might be financially advantageous to companies that manufacture military equipment, especially if they adjust by expanding production facilities.  However, after the war is over, they may have to readjust again, by cutting production and laying-off employees.  Alternatively, they may be able to sell military equipment to other nations, or transform their manufacturing to products for the general consumer, such as automobiles and electronic equipment.  

In general, there are many adjustments that organizations must make to maintain their business, and overall functionality.  The adjustments can involve cutting expenses, when the rate of sales is low.  This can involve a reduction in production, and laying-off employees.  When demand for the products increase expanding production facilities and hiring additional employees will probably be lucrative.

Environmental Conditions Usually Vary Over Time Which Can Affect the Marketability of Products, and the Rate of Sales

A general principle that usually holds true is environmental factors varies significantly over time, often within a five a 10 year period.  This holds true for the United States and many other nations throughout the world.  This can range from war to peace, inflation, recession, a high demand for specific products, a low demand for the products, etc.  In addition, there are often variations over time in political strategies of most nations.  The political climate may be favorable at one point in time to a specific type of business and highly unfavorable at another point in time.  Social trends, in terms of the demands of the consumer also very significantly over time.  A product that is in fashion at one point in time might be out of fashion in a couple of years or less. 

Expect Change: Create Marketing and Production Plans that are Appropriate for the Changes that are Likely to Occur.

The idea to keep in mind is there are a large number of variations that take place over time that may significantly affect an organization, and the sales of its products.  Many of these variations more or less appear to go in a regular cycle.  This involves the repetition of various environmental conditions over time.  The best example of this is the economy and the business cycle.  A less obvious example is war.  The United States, and a number of other countries, periodically gets involved in war.  

With this understanding it is possible to prepare an organization and its marketing strategy to deal with the repetitive environmental occurrences, as well as unusual and unpredictable events.  For example, when a product is in high demand as a result of environmental factors, production and marketing plans can be made based on the assumption that the demand will most likely drop when the environmental conditions change.  To illustrate further, a plan to deal with a permanent increase in demand for a product may justify expansion of production facilities and the hiring of new employees.  However, increase in demand for a product that is due to environmental conditions that are likely to change may require a different type of planning.  That is, expansion of production facilities may not be cost-effective, and it may result in financial losses in the long run.  Thus, it might be more cost-effective to outsource some of the production process, when dealing with a demand that is likely to diminish as a result of changes in the environment.

Summing Up Environmental Factors

The idea to keep in mind is that the external environment is constantly changing, and for a business to be successful, it must be prepared to deal with the environmental variations that take place over time.  This involves creating plans, and contingency plans, to deal with predictable and unpredictable environmental changes.  Many of the environmental changes happen periodically, more or less in cycles, and they are essentially predictable, but it is usually not possible to predict precisely when an occurrence will happen.  For example, over the next 50 years, we can assume that the United States will probably get into several new wars, but we may not be able to predict when these occurrences will happen.  All of this simply suggests that plans should be created to deal with the realities that a business is likely to face from the external environment.

 

 

INTERNAL BEHAVIORAL FACTORS

 

 

 

Behavioral Factors of Management and Staff

Most of the literature I have come across on marketing, organizational behavior, general business operation, and management theory, did not provide an adequate discussion of the material I am presenting in this section.  Specifically, this discussion is about behavioral factors of staff and management that affect the functioning of a business, either positively or adversely.  Such behavioral factors can sometimes be extremely significant for a specific business, and it can result in a highly profitable and growing organization, or a failed business that goes into bankruptcy.  An example is a CEO who poorly manages an organization, as a result of his heavy drinking.  Another example is a CEO, who is very successful in managing his organization, because of his dedication and great knowledge and skill.  The behavioral factors that I am discussing affect the organization by definition.  A CEO that is an alcoholic, but his behavior does not affect the functioning of his organization, would not be involved with the concept that I am discussing here. 

I am primarily focusing on adverse behavioral factors because problematic areas of an organization represent areas that can be improved.  Focusing on highly functional behavioral factors of an organization, will not reveal areas where improvements can be easily made.

It is important to understand that personal problems and liabilities, as well as abilities and assets do not necessarily affect the functioning of a business.  People often know how to keep their personal problems away from the work environment.  In addition, there may be other staff members that compensate for the personal weakness of other workers so the organization is not affected adversely. 

As far as abilities and assets of staff and management, they are not always recognized and utilized, by the organization, and they may not even be relevant to the operation of a specific business.  An example is a foreman of a construction crew, who has a great deal of skill in marketing.  These skills, even if they were recognized, they would generally not be of any value to a foreman. 

The impact of abilities and behavioral factors of individuals in an organization will generally depend on their occupation and their position.  For example, a CEO that is too ill to carry out his job effectively will have more impact on the organization than a lower level employee, such as a file clerk that is performing in adequately because of illness.  Some employees have more impact on an organization as a result of the nature of their work.  The CEO runs the company, and the clerk files papers, perhaps with a team of other clerks.  At the lower occupational levels there are usually a number of individuals doing identical jobs.  This lowers the impact of inadequate performance of one or even several employees.  If one employee is doing an inadequate job, the other employees with similar job titles will probably compensate for the inadequacies of the worker.  In addition, in many organizations, the lower level employees that are doing inadequate work can easily be fired, and replaced.  At the higher occupational levels this may be far less feasible.  For example, the CEO that is performing poorly for whatever reason, might own controlling shares in the company, or he may be the sole owner of the facility. 

Small business

Behavioral factors of management and staff might have more of an impact on small businesses, especially micro-businesses with, five or less employees.  For example, if the owner of a small business becomes seriously ill, the facility may have to be closed until he recovers.  Any type of illness, family problems, can interfere with the tasks needed to carry out the functions of a small business at an optimum level.  I have noticed that the appearance, and functionality of a small store, sometimes appears to reflect the physical and psychological state of the owner. 

There are a number of types of problems that might interfere with the functionality of an organization, especially when it affects the CEO, or higher-level managers.  Some of these problems may also be significant when a large percentage of lower level employees have the difficulties.  These problems are summarized below:

 

Medical problems of a physiological nature

 

Psychological disorders and mental health problems

 

Emotional problems and reactions that are not necessarily psychological disorders

Personality problems, and personality conflicts, that are not necessarily psychological disorders

 

Prejudicial judgments and treatment of people that relate to the work environment

 

Lack of skill, knowledge and/or experience in areas that are relevant to the work environment

 

Adverse Behavioral Factors of Superiors Can Not Only Affect the Organization, it Can Also Affect Employees

The behavioral factors mentioned above, can not only affect the organization, it can also affect employees.  That is, it is not unusual for an employee, or even a student, to encounter a superior, that is having major life problems.  This can range from a superior with medical problems to psychological difficulties.  These difficulties can also involve financial problems, family conflict, divorce, and death in the family.  Problems of this nature are not uncommon, but they become problems for employees, and sometimes for students, if it affects the judgment, tolerance, and social skills of the superior.  This can involve a superior with one or more of the above problems, who is repeatedly getting into conflicts with others, especially with lower-level employees.  This can involve a superior that is frequently yelling at employees, and threatening to fire them. 

Of course, there are people at all levels in an organization, including managers, that have problems, but their judgment and tolerance, and their interaction with the lower level employees are not affected.  These individuals have developed the skill of separating their personal problems, from the problems and dynamics of the work environment.  Simply put, some people know how to leave their problems at home.

The idea here is to develop an awareness of the concept and problems presented above, with the goal of circumventing or alleviating the difficulty.  How this is done, depends on your position in the organization, and many other factors.

 

17à Click on this hyperlink for a sound file of the following:

Chapter 10 Unusual Aspects of Marketing

 

INTRODUCTION

 

What are Unusual Aspects of Marketing?

In most of this book, I have been discussing the typical marketing methods and principles that apply to our modern world.  However, there are many unusual types of marketing that I did not discuss, but I will discuss them in this chapter.  Some of these unusual marketing methods do not even involve money, and they may not even be thought of as marketing, by most people.  However, they essentially fit the general definition of marketing, or they relate to marketing in some way.

Religion, political candidates, and charities might not be thought of as products by many people.  However, they are products that are marketed from the perspective presented in this book.  They require persuading the consumer to except a service.  For example, politicians are offering their political services, if the voters are willing to put him or her in power.  Religion, is also offering services, which can involve sermons, religious studies, the guidance of a religious leader, which may be offered simply for attendance at a religious temple, or for contribution of money, or even for a fixed fee. 

Most people assume that marketing involves the exchange of money.  However, there are exchanges of goods and services, by means of barter, which is a type of marketing, based on the concepts presented in this book.

There are marketing efforts that persuade consumers to use less of a product, or to stop using a product.  This may sound quite unusual, but when you read the section on demarketing, you will see that it is quite common.

I will discuss all of the above in this chapter, under the following headings.

 

 

MARKETING AND BARTER

 

 

An Introduction to Modern Barter

When we think of marketing we generally think of an exchange of goods and services for money.  Generally speaking, modern economic systems are based on money.  Of course, this was not always the case.  The first systems of exchange were based on barter.  This involves exchanging one product for another.  For example, an individual that was a good hunter, in the Stone Age, might have informed his neighbors, that he was willing to exchange animal meat and skins, for the implements needed for hunting, and other handcrafted items needed for survival.  This is more or less a simple form of marketing, and it involves barter.  The same concept may have developed with services, where one service, was exchange for another, and/or a service exchange for a physical item. 

All of the above of course is speculation, but we do know that both the concepts of barter and marketing did develop from a primitive form to the modern concepts.  In modern society there exist various forms of barter.  Most of the modern barter methods are far more complex than a simple exchange.  However, modern barter methods are not widely known or used.  Nevertheless, there are barter companies that use various techniques involving exchange.  There are also personal ads and related websites that deal with barter between individual consumers.  This will be discussed in the following paragraphs.

Barter Companies and the Techniques they Use

One of the techniques that are used with modern barter is primarily focused on businesses, as opposed to the general consumer.  This can involve a barter company that acts as a middleman, between the exchanging parties.  The exchange takes place between the clients that the barter company serves.  The barter company essentially keeps a record of the value of products that a company submits for barter.  Generally, the value of products is measured in modern currency, such as dollars, but it may be converted to another format, such as barter dollars, or barter credits.  The exact details of how a specific barter company operates can differ with each company, and it can be complex. 

Below, there is a Web address of a barter company (Barter Business Exchange) that carries out exchanges between businesses.  They use a concept they call barter dollars.  The yellow box, in quotation marks, is part of the statement found on their website.  I suggest you look at this website, by clicking on the hyperlinked web address.

http://www.ncbarter.com/howbbeworks.html

“THE CONCEPT

The Barter Business Exchange (BBE) will refer new customers to your company. The new customers we send will pay for your products and services with barter dollars which you can use with any other participating business in the Barter Business Exchange. The barter dollars earned from these customers can be used to eliminate your current cash expenses. We currently have over 600 participating businesses.”

 

 

There are barter companies that use an exchange method that involves essentially a type of credit or debit card.  The company that is listed below calls its card Bartercard.  The company name is Bartercard International.  This, like the method above, avoids the direct exchange of goods, and it is also for businesses.  The exchanges are carried out through the barter company, with the aid of their Bartercard.  For more information click on their web address below, and examine their website. http://www.bartercard.com/ The yellow box bellow, with the quotation marks, is a statement from their website.

Bartercard is unlike any other credit or debit card because you fund our card with your own goods and services...NOT CASH. Bartercard currently helps over 55,000 smart businesses in 13 countries around the world (over 23,000 in Australia) to increase sales, customer base, cash-flow and profit.  Bartercard enables member businesses to exchange goods and services with other Member businesses, saving valuable cash, without having to engage in a direct swap of goods.

 

The following web address is for a company (Intertrade Capital Group) that deals with barter for large companies, including foreign companies and governments, according to the statements on their website.

http://www.intertradecapital.com/overview.html The yellow box bellow contains quote from the above website.

“Intertrade Capital Group is a global alliance organization set to enable barter, trade, countertrade, asset management and alternative capital and financial transactions for Fortune 500 and Global 3000 companies, governments, and barter exchanges. The company enables execution of traditional and online trade transactions that greatly expand liquidity and bottom line profitability.”

 

There are some barter organizations that are designed for individual consumers.  Below, there is a Web address of such an organization, called SwapTreasures.  Basically, they allow users to place ads on their website, to exchange individual items for other items, and/or to sell for money.  Buyers can make an offer for any product on their website for exchange of another item (barter), or for money, which may or may not be accepted by the seller.  There are many items on this website, such as old computers, clothing, automobiles, boats, antiques, books, etc.  They also have a section for services. http://www.swaptreasures.com/ The yellow box bellow contains quote from the above website.

SwapTreasures is an online swap community where members can swap, barter, buy, and sell goods and services. Save money by swapping your unwanted stuff with other members.

 

My Concluding Thoughts on Modern Barter

Modern barter is not very common or popular.  I do not know any individual or business owner that dealt with the barter methods discussed above.  No doubt, most companies, as well as their employees, want money for their goods and services, not barter credits. 

However the modern barter concept might be helpful for companies, and even nations, that are deficient in money and credit, and who have an excess of products that they can exchange for barter credits.  The barter credits can be exchanged for needed goods and services.  However, the difficulty here is they have to find suppliers that are willing to accept the barter credits for the needed goods and services.  Generally, the company that issues the barter credits will attempt to provide suppliers that are barter clients, and are willing to accept barter credits.

From the above, it should be apparent that modern barter is quite different than a simple exchange of items between two people.  The barter credits or barter dollars, is more or less a different form of money. 

Barter credits can be calculated in dollars, euros, or any other type of money.  In theory, it is possible to calculate the barter credits using the most stable form of money, or it can be based on the value of a precious metal, such as gold.  Modern barter and the concept of barter credits can be helpful for companies and nations that do not have money, and which are productive, and have products to exchange. 

The concept of barter credits is in a certain sense a form of money.  The concept of modern barter might gradually evolve into a new method of exchange, which could be international.  In theory, international barter credits, could be protected from the less than optimal economies of most nations, especially in terms of inflation and deflation, if it was based on a very stable currency, a precious metal, or the average value of several precious metals or currencies.   Perhaps someday in the very distant future, everyone will have a debit or credit card for barter credits.  However, I do not think that the concept will evolve to this level, but it is possible.

For more information on barter see the following websites.

Websites on Barter and Related Concepts

 

Search phrase with Google:  Barter Companies and the Techniques they Use http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Barter+Companies+and+the+Techniques+they+Use  This website consists of one or more search pages, with many links to other websites.  If you do not find what you want on this website, you can change the search phrase that will appear in a dialog box, after you click on the above web address.  After changing the search phrase, press the enter key, and you will see a different set of websites.

 

http://www.barternews.com/think_barter_grow_richer.htm

Words on website: Barter News

 

http://www.barterbart.com/?gclid=CP3WyIDh35ACFQSOFQoddl0UWQ Words on website: Welcome. This is a FREE barter auction site!

 

http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1745-493X.1994.tb00189.x?cookieSet=1&journalCode=jscm Words on website:

The Journal of Supply Chain Management Abstract Barter: An Alternative to Traditional Methods of Purchasing

 

http://www.microsoft.com/smallbusiness/resources/startups/budgeting-expenses/bartering-can-boost-your-budget-and-business.aspx Words on website: Microsoft Small Business Center Bartering can boost your budget and business

 

http://answers.google.com/answers/threadview?id=538802 Words on website: Q: Comprehensive report of barter exchange business models and networks (sites)

 

http://books.google.com/books?id=QLFqKzXwq20C&pg=PA181&lpg=PA181&dq=barter+companies+and+the+techniques+they+use&source=web&ots=OWJNE-UIgy&sig=C578l6X3eOna_DN1OGB7YuFHwDQ Words on website: The Tax-Free Exchange Loophole: How Real Estate Investors Can Profit 

 

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0EIN/is_2004_Sept_8/ai_n6185337 Words on website: Bentley Commerce forms Strategic Alliance with David Cooper to Teach the Benefits of Barter to Thousands of Businesses Across the USA

 

http://www.bxiarizona.com/aboutus/abouthist.asp Words on website: Barter History

 

http://www.barternews.com/mappage/default.htm

Words on website: USA Barter Companies 

 

http://www.ncbarter.com/ Words on website: Thank you for trading with the LARGEST bartering network for smart business owners in NC! The Barter Business Exchange, North Carolina’s barter leader since 1994.

 

http://www.ncbarter.com/index.html Words on website: Thank you for trading with the LARGEST bartering network for smart business owners in NC!

 

http://www.intertradecapital.com/

Words on website: ALTERNATIVE CAPITAL SOLUTIONS

 

http://www.highwayhome.com/corporate/barter/barter_companies.html

Words on website: Barter Companies Description Location Telephone

 

 

 

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