medium sized company, Sportzshoo plc makes a range shoes sports. The company founded privately owned Steve Scott, entrepreneur Olympic gold medalist.
Types of marketing information needed by Sportzshoo
There are various types of marketing information that Sportzshoo PLC will need in order to succeed. It is important for the company to understand the procedures that are needed to gather, sort, evaluate, analyze and distribute the marketing information in order to ensure that marketers have accurate and timely information for their decision making. There are three major types of marketing information that the company needs in order to succeed. These are recurrent information, monitoring information and research or requested information Shepherd, Food, & Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 1997()
This refers to information that is collected on a regular basis regarding the performance of the organization such as market share, sales volumes, product awareness, brand awareness, and consumer feedback. Others may include margin reports, purchase reports, customer service expense reports and costing analyses. These are usually routine data that the company collects in order to keep track of the trends and may be collected weekly, monthly or yearly depending on the organization. This is also referred to as internal company information since it analyses the strengths, weaknesses and capability of the organization to grow and expand.
This is data that is collected at a particular time from an identified source. It helps in regular scanning of the organization, its competitors and the industry in general. Generally, these are market and competitor analyses. This helps the organization to be aware of industry trends and to identify potential problems that may be coming up. These may also be referred to as marketing intelligence. It gives the marketing officers a general view of the business environment. This includes the overall demand in the market, market potential, competitors and their strategies. These are often gathered from internal sources such as consumers, distributors and suppliers and they help the marketers to understand the day-to-day happenings in the organization and the market in general.
Research or requested information
This is also referred to as market research. It may be primary data that is often collected through surveys or research in response to a particular request made by the organization. This may also be secondary information if the marketing department uses information collected by a research organization in response to their request for this data. It helps to evaluate the anticipated or expected trends against the actual market trends Ferrell & Hartline, 2010.
They are usually expensive to collect but when the survey is well developed, they are completely worth it. They also help to predict how the market responds to changes in the marketing plan and to gather knowledge on how to proceed.
Sources of marketing information for Sportzshoo
Barksdale, Goldstucker, and DeLaune (1995)
state that there are five major sources of marketing information. These are primary data, secondary data, market research, experimentation and simulation. Primary data includes all internal sources of information. One of this is sales analyses which involve retrieval and aggregation of sales information to detect the effect of marketing strategies, their strengths and weaknesses. Another source of primary data is cost analyses which help to show the effectiveness of production, distribution and sales strategies in ensuring the marketing plan is achieved. Financial records are also a primary source of marketing information since they provide information on sales volumes, available opportunities and marketing ventures. Secondary sources of marketing information include both internal and external sources of data. Internal sources include sales data, financial data, transport data and storage data. These are usually archived data that the organization holds which can be used to evaluate marketing strategies. External sources include government reports, periodicals and journals, the internet, trade association reports, commercial service reports such as market research reports and other publications. Information from respondents usually involves market surveys conducted by the marketing team and includes personal interviews, telephone interviews, customer feedback forms and mail questionnaires. Experimentation involves test runs of products or services coupled with research to find out how the market responds to it. The marketing team may decide to have a control group and experimental group to establish the differences between the two groups. This strategy may help greatly where a new product is being compared to another. The last source is simulation which involves the marketing team evaluating models of real world consumer response based on other sources of data. It largely involves imitating consumer behavior and how it can be manipulated through various marketing strategies. Unlike experimentation, there is no real world experiment Bennett, 2007()
How Sportzshoo can collect and utilize marketing information
For Sportzshoo, primary data can be collected by ensuring that the company's records are kept up to data and they are as accurate as possible. Primary data can also be collected through market research by organizing surveys and questionnaires to collect information from willing consumers. Secondary data can be collected by getting copies of reports and publications as earlier suggested.
In order for Sportzshoo Plc to succeed in its marketing strategies, the company needs to recognize the available alternatives in order to make accurate predictions of consumer behavior. One way in which the company can use marketing information is to predict the future behavior of consumers based on the information collected. This involves making judgments and placing expectations on the target market based on the financial status, business forecast and price expectations.
Sportzshoo will also benefit by using marketing information to establish the socio-economic characteristics of the market. This will help to create market segments which the company can target individually through varied marketing strategies. It will help to identify differential purchase behavior among the different market segments, practicable means of establishing the differences between the marketing strategies for each segment and also allow the company to develop different marketing strategies for each segment. Consumer behavior also helps to establish brand and product awareness which are also crucial variables in marketing strategies. By understanding the consumers, the marketing team can be able to identify factors that affect product and brand awareness such as the extent of knowledge of the consumers and the influence of marketing decisions. It will also help to establish the attitude and opinion of consumers towards the various products and services offered by Sportzshoo. The consumer's attitude and opinion will also help greatly in predicting actions of consumers based on different marketing strategies. The degree of intensity of the relevant opinions and attitudes also needs to be established in order to find how they influence consumer behavior Piercy & Evans, 1983()
Marketing information once collected is very crucial in strategic decision making. This is because the organization will be able to make better objectives and allocate its resources better towards ensuring they match the needs of the target market segments. It will also help if Sportzshoo comes up with efficient and effective ways of managing its resources and to create operational marketing units for each segment based on the marketing information. Marketing ifnoramtoin will also help Sportzshoo to analyze its competition in aspects such as the nature of competition, character of competitors, number of competitors and their various strategies. This will help the company to evaluate the effectiveness of its chosen strategies based on those taken by the competition.
Market segmentation is an important strategy which involves dividing the target market into different segments that show differences from others. This helps the company to develop appropriate marketing strategies that satisfy the needs of each target segment. In order for Sportzshoo plc to analyze its market segments, there is need to understand what each market segments involves. This includes identifying the differentiating attributes of the market segments. These must be measurable. Second, there is accessibility of the market segments meaning there must be established distribution and communication channels for each market segments. Third is substantiality which means that each segment should be able to justify the resources needed in order to effectively target them. Fourth, each segment should have its own unique needs which are used to identify the segments. Lastly, the market segments must be durable meaning they should be segments that are stable and can be targeted over a long period of time with minimal increase in cost of changes of marketing strategies Brooks, 1995()
There are four major bases upon which Sportzshoo can decide to segment its consumer market. The first is geographic segmentation which involves setting up geographic variables such as region, population, climate and area. The most important geographic variable for Sportzshoo is region since the sports shoe market is not heavily affected by population density and weather. However, classification of areas as urban, suburban and rural may also help in setting up the market segments. The second base is demographic segmentation which includes variables such as age, family size, gender, generation, occupation, income, level of education, ethnicity, religion, and social class. These are deemed to greatly affect…