International Competition

.. nding out what the customer wants is one of the problems marketing research tries to solve. Marketing research has been defined as trying to analyze marketing problems scientifically. It studies people as buyers and sellers, examining their habits, attitudes, preferences, dislikes, and purchasing power. It often studies specific segments of a population, such as teenagers, high-income groups, or senior citizens. Marketing research also investigates distribution systems, pricing, promotion, product design, packaging, brand names, and almost every aspect of the seller-buyer relationship.

Marketing research is divided into a number of sub areas. Advertising research attempts to find out the effectiveness of advertising. It also seeks to learn the best media for advertising specific products: television, newspapers, radio, magazines, billboards, and others. Market analysis tries to identify and measure markets for specific products and to estimate sales potential. Markets may be differentiated by population groups or by geography.

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Some types of clothing are more likely to sell in Florida and California than in the northern Midwest. Some cosmetics will appeal more to black customers than to white customers. Marketing research is an expensive undertaking, and its costs are built into the prices of products. Almost every company in the United States that manufactures a product, that provides a service, or that sells products or services through retail outlets uses advertising. Those that use it most are companies that must create a demand for several products or services among many people residing in a large area. While advertising brings the economies of mass selling to the manufacturer, it produces benefits for the consumer as well.

Some of those economies are passed along to the purchaser so that the cost of a product sold primarily through advertising is usually far less than one sold through personal salespeople. Advertising brings people immediate news about products that have just come on the market. Finally, advertising pays for the programs on commercial television and radio and for about two thirds of the cost of publishing magazines and newspapers. Consumer goods are those that are sold to final users, the customers. These goods include food, clothing, automobiles, television sets, appliances, and all those things people go to stores to purchase.

To sell a product or good successfully you must appeal to the consumer. Companies use advertisement to entice them to go into stores and purchase products. For instance, coffee is a very popular and fast selling consumer good, which will always be in demand. A popular commercial and slogan was used by Maxwell Coffee to differiante them from other coffee companies. A Cup of Instant Culture was the slogan the company used earlier this decade. With coffee drinking on the wane, coffee makers can no longer simply offer satisfied faces grinning over cups of steaming java.

Coffee, like lifestyles, must be exotic and sophisticated. P&G’s Folger’s and Kraft General Food’s Maxwell House have spent bundles not only to keep their jingles alive but to show that they fit into a thirty something mindset awash with babies, careers and an amateurs appreciation for those fresh-roasted grounds. Ironically, the most efficient performers were two Nestle brands that don’t offer the fresh-ground variety: Nescafe and Taster’s Choice. Both reduced their spending and increased their efficiency dramatically. For Taster’s Choice, the trick may have been its allusions to elegance: Is this one too good for your guests? A handsome neighbor asks a well-coiffed hostess who’s looking to borrow some coffee.

Nescafe evokes the exotic with scenes of tropical splendor. Hills Brothers, which kept both spending and efficiency relatively static, goes even further, taking viewers on a jungle expedition filled with toucans and rain forest haze, all to the strains of melodies familiar to fans of Paul Simon. To improve the selling of consumer goods companies are reevaluating their advertising techniques and promotions. Online advertising revenue grew 66 percent between the first and second quarters of this year, with significant gains made in the consumer-goods business. Those are among the findings of a report based on a survey of major advertising sites that the Internet Advertising Bureau released last week.

The study, conducted by Coopers & Lybrand’s New Media Group, found that total spending rose to $214.4 million in the quarter ended June 30, up from $129.5 million in the March quarter. These are the strongest results we’ve seen yet, said Rich LeFurgy, chairman of the IAB and senior vice president of advertising for ESPN/ABCNews Internet. The advertising bureau is a trade group whose primary members are sites that are ad-supported. The bureau’s numbers reflect self-reported revenue figures from more than 800 sites, each of which has at least $5,000 a month in online ad revenue. The survey gets a 90 percent response rate, according to Peter Petrusky, who oversees the study for Coopers & Lybrand.

The growth of ads for consumer goods was particularly noteworthy given that ads for computers and related products had been dominant since the Web’s inception. Ads for consumer goods were responsible or 30 percent of revenue in the second quarter, up from 17 percent in the first quarter. Following consumer goods were financial services (22 percent of total spending), computer goods (21 percent), and new media and telecommunications (7 percent each). LeFurgy said the growth demonstrated that consumer-goods companies were moving out of an experimental mode and into a commitment mode on the Web. In conclusion, the client above used this information to evaluate the effectiveness of the advertising.

They determined that the advertising was memorable, but that the public tended not to recall the message the client was trying to portray. They were able to make changes to the advertising to better communicate the intended message. All of these types of marketing are attempts to find and reach the elusive and demanding consumer. However, one of the most interesting of these responses is it grows out of the conviction that the only way for marketing to be effective with the consumer of today is to radically change and become subversive. The marketing techniques, advertising, and promotion used by todays companies help consumer goods and services sell quickly.

Bibliography Atiyah P.S. The Sale of Goods London: Pitman: London, 1990. Dobson A.P. Sale of Goods and Consumer Credit. London: Sweet & Maxwell Limted 1989. Jobber, David Principles and Practice of Marketing. London: McGraw Hill 2nd ed, 1998 Mowen, John C. and Minor, Micheal.

Consumer Behaviour 5th ed New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 1998 Woodruffe, Helen Services Marketing. M Pitman: London, 1995.

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