To ensure that the marketing programs reach the objectives, marketers must focus on how to best implement the chosen strategy.
Identify the methods used to manage and implement marketing strategies
- After the firm identifies its strategic objectives, selects its target market, finalizes its desired positioning for the company, and determines its product or brand, marketing managers focus on how to best implement the chosen strategy.
- Effective execution may require management of both internal resources and a variety of external vendors and service providers.
- Marketing management therefore often makes use of various organizational control systems, such as sales forecasts, sales force and reseller incentive programs, sales force management systems, and customer relationship management tools (CRM).
- supply chain management: Supply chain management (SCM) is the management of a network of interconnected businesses involved in the provision of product and service packages required by the end customers in a supply chain.
- value proposition: The benefit (such as profit or convenience) offered by an organization’s product or service.
After the firm identifies its strategic objectives, selects its target market, finalizes its desired positioning for the company, and determines its product or brand, marketing managers focus on how to best implement the chosen strategy.
Traditionally, this has involved implementation planning across the “4 Ps” of marketing: Product management, Pricing (at what price slot does a producer position a product, e.g., low, medium or high price), Place (i.e., sales and distribution channels; the place or area where the products are going to be sold, which could be local, regional, countrywide, or international), and Promotion.
Taken together, the company’s implementation choices across the 4 Ps are often described as the marketing mix, meaning the mix of elements the business will employ to “go to market” and execute the marketing strategy.
The overall goal for the marketing mix is to consistently deliver a compelling message that states the benefits derived from purchasing the product or service and why it is better than similar products that are for sale. It is this value proposition that reinforces the firm’s chosen positioning, builds customer loyalty and brand equity among target customers, and achieves the firm’s marketing and financial objectives.
In many cases, marketing management will develop a marketing plan to specify how the company will execute the chosen strategy and achieve the business’s objectives. The content of marketing plans varies from firm to firm, but commonly includes:
- An executive summary
- Situation analysis to summarize facts and insights gained from market research and marketing analysis
- The company’s mission statement or long-term strategic vision
- A statement of the company’s key objectives, often subdivided into marketing objectives and financial objectives
- The marketing strategy the business has chosen, specifying the target segments to be pursued and the competitive positioning to be achieved
- Implementation choices for each element of the marketing mix (the 4 Ps)
Project, Process, and Vendor Management
More broadly, marketing managers work to design and improve the effectiveness of core marketing processes, such as new product development, brand management, marketing communications, and pricing.
Marketers may employ the tools of business process reengineering to ensure these processes are properly designed, and use a variety of process management techniques to keep them operating smoothly.
Effective execution may require management of both internal resources and a variety of external vendors and service providers, such as the firm’s advertising agency.
Marketers may therefore coordinate with the company’s purchasing department on the procurement of these services. The area of marketing agency management (i.e., working with external marketing agencies and suppliers) uses techniques such as agency performance evaluation, scope of work, incentive compensation, RFXs, and storage of agency information in a supplier database.
Reporting, Measurement, Feedback and Control Systems
Marketing management employs a variety of metrics to measure progress against objectives. It is the responsibility of marketing managers – in the marketing department or elsewhere – to ensure that the execution of marketing programs achieves the desired objectives and does so in a cost-efficient manner.
Marketing management therefore often makes use of various organizational control systems, such as sales forecasts, sales force and reseller incentive programs, sales force management systems, and customer relationship management tools (CRM).
Recently, some software vendors have begun using the term “marketing operations management” or “marketing resource management” to describe systems that facilitate an integrated approach for controlling marketing resources. In some cases, these efforts may be linked to various supply chain management systems, such as enterprise resource planning (ERP), material requirements planning (MRP), efficient consumer response (ECR), and inventory management systems.