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Text 1. About Marketing

If a company wants to increase the efficiency of production, it should take into consideration some business producers and consumers’ interests. In other words, producers must know what to produce and consumers must know that it is being produced. The task and responsibility of the marketing staff is to link these two factors together. Marketing is the process of keeping producers informed of consumers’ needs and evaluating that their products are available to consumers in the way the latter want. A market consists of people who sell and buy. That is way the markets can be consumer and industrial. Marketing is possible only in the free–market economies, as in the central-planned economies it is the government that dictates what should be produced and then distributed.

Marketing is the strategic business function on facilitating and fulfilling customer demands by introducing innovations, developing relationships and creating good customer services.

Marketing can be seen as a fundamental philosophy, and as a set of applied techniques. As a business philosophy, marketing puts customers at the centre of an organisation’s considerations. In a competitive business environment, an organisation will survive only if it focuses on the needs of clearly defined groups in society and produces goods and services that satisfy their requirements efficiently. A company must pay attention to the customer wanting to buy, rather than to the producer needing to sell.

Marketing, as a set of techniques impliesmarket research as a technique for finding out customer needs and advertising as a technique for describing the benefits of the product offered to the customers. New product development and pricingare also marketing techniques.

The marketing mix comprises Product, Price, Promotion, Place, People, Process, and Physical Evidence decisions.

A product is a service or goods that an organisation offers to the customers. Developing a new product a manager can control quality, style, special design features, packaging, warranties, after-sales service, and the brand image.

A price determines the income that will be generated. If the selling price of a product is set too high, a company may not achieve its target sales volume. If it is set too low, the target sales volume may be achieved, but less profit will be earned.

Companies usually make their goods and services in places that are convenient for production. Customers buy them where the purchase process is the easiest. Managers should determine how to deliver the goods from the place of production to the place of sale. This means determining the channels of distribution.

Logistics or physical distribution management is also very important as it helps to optimise transport and storage expenses.

Promotion is used by companies in order to deliver the message describing the benefits of their products to their target markets. Promotional tools include advertising, personal selling, public relations, sponsorship, and direct marketing methods.

People decisions are particularly important to the marketing of services where staff has a high level of contact with customers. Marketing effectiveness is affected by the actions of those employees who interact with customers.

The processof production may be of little concern to the consumer of manufactured goods, but it is often of critical concern to the consumer of ‘high contact’ services. For busy customers, the speed and friendliness with which the customers are processed may be as important as the product itself.

Physical evidence is especially important for buyers of intangible services. This can be a brochure which describes and gives pictures of important elements of the service or product. The appearance of staff can give evidence about the service. A clean, bright environment used in a service outlet can help to persuade potential customers to make a purchase decision. As for the well-managed businesses, marketing is the process that has no beginning or end. It involvs analysis, planning, implementation, evaluation and control.

Answer the questions:

1. What is marketing?

2. Why are companies engaged in marketing?

3. Who or what is in the centre of the company’s marketing efforts?

4. What are the components of the marketing mix?

5. What product characteristics does a manager control?

6. What may happen if the selling price of a product is too high?

7. What role does theconcept of place play in marketing?

8. What promotional tools can a company use?

9. What is particularly important to the marketing of

services ?

10. What does physical evidence refer to?


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