Know the order and sequence to plan, implement and control the various activities of marketing …
Whereas the marketing system is a total business activity, it is essential to understand that there is a “sequential order” for planning, implementation and control; ie a starting point followed by a series of steps that occur in an orderly fashion.
In this sequential order, it is known as the marketing process; which serves the marketer (like a compass) to orient the passing of its various activities in this field.
Definition of Marketing Process:
According to Prof. Philip Kotler, the ” marketing process consists of analyzing marketing opportunities, research and select target markets, marketing design strategies, plan marketing programs and organize, implement and control the marketing effort ” .
For a better understanding, we will conduct a structural analysis of this definition:
1. Analysis of Marketing Opportunities:
This is the “first stage” or “Phase 1” of the marketing process.
It means a chance to marketing “when there is a high probability that someone (person, company or organization) can get benefits to satisfy a need or desire” .
Moreover, it is considered as “an attractive market opportunity,” when there is enough potential buyers (with purchasing power and willingness to buy) of a product or service and few or no competitors it provided. This situation dramatically increases the chances of creating a profit for satisfying the needs or desires in this market.
What situations to identify a market opportunity?
According to Prof. Kotler, three basic situations that lead to market opportunities :
A. When something is scarce: This situation can identify when people do “row” to purchase a particular product or service.
B. When there is a need for an existing product or service, but it is provided for a new or better way: To detect this nothing more appropriate to pay close attention to user complaints about a product or service situation and / or craving that people have to be supplied to them somewhat higher than they currently receive.
C. When there is a need for a new product or service, but the market does not know exactly what it is: These are the rarest ideas. Typical examples are the Walkmans, CDPlayers, VHS, DVD and the like that people did not know that could possibly need in their homes or offices; however, someone had the foresight to anticipate events.
2. Market Research:
This is the “second stage” or “Phase 2” of the marketing process and begins after that identified a market opportunity. Its purpose is to measure and predict how attractive is that particular market. For this it is necessary to estimate its actual size, its growth, its peculiarities and current preferences. A * market research *, typically it includes the following basic tasks:
- – Collecting information
- – Interpretation
- – Communication
– of findings people who make decisions. It should be noted that without a market research company would enter fully compete blindly, because not known the different market needs, perceptions and preferences. All critical to success in today’s business factors.
3. Select Marketing Strategies:
After studying all information obtained in the investigation of market, it’s time to make strategic decisions to be addressed, differentiate and position in the target market.
To do this, you must make decisions about four specific points:
- – Segmentation: consists of define those segments to be served and in which a superior firepower will apply.
- – Differentiation:It consists in determining the areas in which you have a clear difference from other competitors; provided that that difference represents one or more key benefits that will influence enough for the customer perceives is something for him
- – Positioning: It consists of determining how to “record” the key benefits and product differentiation . in the mind of every person that makes up the target market
- – Emphasis and flexibility: Refers to identify areas in which the company will maintain a firm position (emphasis) and points that can be tailored to the specific market context, etc … (flexibility).
4. Selection Marketing Tactics:
At this stage, the strategies of marketing must be transformed into programs. This is done by taking decisions about the * marketing mix *, the * cost * and * schedule of activities *.
The marketing mix: It is a set of variables or controllable tools that combine in a way that would achieve a particular result in the target market, such as positively influence demand, generate sales, etc. Among its tools or variables are the 4 P’s , that will support and enable the positioning of your product; therefore, we will see what each “tool”:
- – Product: what is offered to the market, can be a tangible or intangible product and services.
- – Plaza: Also known as position, provision or distribution (as preferences each author) refers to measures to be taken so that the target market can access the product or service being marketed.
- – Price: Expressed in monetary terms, includes all costs, its profit margin and charges They make the delivery, warranty and others. It should be noted that price is the only tool of the marketing mix that generates income, other expenses demand tools.
- – Promotion: Are all communication activities are intended to inform, persuade and remind target market benefits and providing the product or service.
- Distribution of resources: refers to direct resources allocated to marketing activities between different tools, for example, product, distribution channels and means of promotion. To this end, need to develop a budget for monthly, quarterly and annual expenses.
- Schedule of activities: Finally, we must develop a comprehensive map of all planned and that can be expressed in * schedule of activities * as detailed as possible, which is included each activity to be held, the date of completion, officials or managers and the resources allocated to each.
This is the stage in the marketing process in which the strategic and tactical plans apply. Is the time when you have to produce or conceptualize the product or service to meet the needs and desires of the target market; then assigned a price that the target market can afford, we distributes it so that it is available at the place and right time and promotes it in order to inform, persuade and / or recall target market benefits.
Product and market availability At this stage we must not forget that the purpose of business is to deliver value to the market;which translates into a commitment that the customer achieve a “satisfactory experience” with the product or service supplied; and all this in exchange for a profit for the person, company or organization.
This last stage in the process of marketing is nothing more than monitor the position in relation to the destination. According to Prof. Kotler, one can distinguish three types of control :
– Annual Control Plan: A feature that allows verifying whether the business It is reaching sales, earnings and other targets (eg Market share and growth) were fixed. To do this, we suggest reviewing monthly, quarterly and half-yearly results obtained and compared with planned.
– Control Performance: Function to measure and quantify the real profitability of each product (if there is more than one), groups customers, sales channels and sizes of orders. It is not a simple activity, but it is necessary to refocus efforts and achieve greater efficiency.
– Strategic Control: Because of the rapid changes in the marketing environment, it is necessary to assess whether the marketing strategy is suitable for conditions market or if you need adjustments or radical changes.
Finally, to maintain a dynamic marketing process is necessary to keep a continuous learning, this means doing so sustained the following tasks:
- – Collect information of the target market.
- – Evaluate the results.
- – Make corrections to improve performance.
As we saw, the “marketing process” includes a set of orderly, sequential and sustained action; which begin long before there is a product or service, and is used by companies that aim to satisfy the needs and desires of its customers, quite contrary to what happened with the business for more than 50 years ago, the aim was to create a product today to sell tomorrow at all costs. Finally, two aspects are advised to implement the marketing process:
– Start marketing activities long before conceptualizing (create and manufacture) a product.
– Follow a sequence of steps culminating with control of all activities versus planned.
Notes and Sources Consulted:
 : From the book: Fundamentals of Marketing, 13th Edition, Stanton, Etzel and Walker, p. 7.
 : From the book: Marketing Management, Philip Kotler, 8th Edition, Page 94;. 101.
 : From the book: The Marketing by Kotler, Editorial Paidos SAICF, p. 59.