The reflection paper does not require any references. 600 words will be perfect!
Submit your Weekly Reflection paper at the end of the week. Your paper should be in the 500-750 word range. Your reflection paper should speak to each of these concepts:
A. What are the most important concepts you have learned this week?
B. What was covered that you, other stakeholders, or your business can generally benefit from.
C. How will these concepts impact you personally and professionally?
D. What is the valued added from these concepts in your own life, or what difference can these concepts make to your organization? (For example, financial savings, productivity improvements, expanded
marketing activities, etc.)
E. Provide any additional relevant personal notes and observations. To aid you in this self reflection, you should consider each of these questions:
(1) How many days did you visit and participate in the classroom this week (the 5 of 7 rule);
(2) Did you submit all of the graded assignments for the week? If not, when will you complete the work?
(3) What is the status of your Marketing Plan as of the end of this week?
(4) Are you having any personal problems getting this plan done on schedule?
(5) What did you like or dislike about the seminar–or what would you change? How do you feel about your progress? Are you satisfied with your performance?
(6) What can I do to make things better? Be specific about the “personal” aspects of your week in this section.
Note: Your reflections paper NEED NOT include references–in fact, this is the one place where I’m looking for your own words, not someone else’s words…and your paper cannot be submitted before
Tuesday of the weekly seminar. This will prevent you from submitting your work before you have had sufficient exposure to the concepts to form an opinion and summarize your learning experience.
Although marketing managers can control the marketing mix they cannot control the external elements that impact their target markets. In order to be successful, marketing managers must understand the
external environment. Marketing research is the key to understanding this environment.
Week in Relation to the Course
During Week Three you will understand the importance of marketing research in the development of marketing strategy and tactics. You will also explore the concepts of segmentation and buyer behavior-this
will be important concepts to address in the development of your Marketing Plan.
Week 3 (Marketing Research)
Readings for the Week:
Chapter 5: Understanding Consumer Behavior
Chapter 6: Understanding Organizations as Customers
Chapter 8: Marketing Research: From Customer Insights to Action
Chapter 9: Market Segmentation, Targeting, and Positioning
Summary of the Week: In Week Three, we will take an in-depth look at the importance of understanding competitive advantage and the role of competitive intelligence in marketing analysis. We will also look
at the importance of marketing research in the development of both strategy and tactics…and eventually in the marketing plan itself. Also in Week Three we will take a look at the various criteria of
segmentation which can impact your target market selection and will look at the various types of organizational buyers and consumers in the market place…including the factors that influence their purchasing
Marketing research plays two roles: to provide decision makers with data concerning the effectiveness of current marketing efforts and to help decision makers explore new opportunities in the workplace.
Marketing research has grown in importance because of management’s focus on customer satisfaction and retention. The marketing research process is comprised of five steps (Perreault & McCarthy, 2005,
1. Defining the problem
2. Analyzing the situation
3. Getting problem-specific data
4. Interpreting the data
5. Solving the problem
Segmentation research helps organizations identify the most lucrative opportunities. Most marketers use segmentation to narrow down a broad set of opportunities to a specific target market and market
strategy. Market segmentation is useful in deciding the way in which a marketer will promote his/her product or service.
There are several ways to segment a market:
Segment marketing consists of a large identifiable group within a market, with similar wants, purchasing power, geographic location, buying attitudes, or buying habits. For example, working adults seeking to
continue their graduate education may be considered a segment of the graduate education market.
Niche marketing is more narrowly defined. It is a small market – a subset of a segment. In continuing with our example, of those adults who want to continue their graduate education, there may be those who
cannot consistently get to a physical campus on a regular basis. This means that our working adult graduate student segment can be niched into smaller segments: those preferring online classes, those able to
attend on ground campuses, and those who can do both.
Local marketing is tailored to meet the unique needs of a local area (city, neighborhood, etc). In continuing with our example, some universities may offer more technology-based courses in cities like Denver
and Seattle because of the high concentration of technology firms in these locales.
Individual marketing, also known as one-to-one marketing, is the most intimate form of marketing. As a result of extreme personalization being too costly and time prohibitive, a new form of individualized
marketing has come about–mass customization, which is the ability to prepare individually designed products and communications on a mass basis to meet each customer’s requirements. Again, using our
education example, a university might send customized information packets to potential candidates that include pre-printed information, but will send only the selected information in which the student has
Criteria for Segmenting
Each segment “slices” the marketplace. The more times you apply a segmentation filter, the more focused your segmentation is. The more focused your efforts, the more likely your marketing messaging and
product development will be relevant to your target market. While some marketers may get frustrated with segmentation (because it requires a lot of research), conventional wisdom is now demonstrating that
such preparatory activities are actually less expensive than creating broad based marketing programs – which may or may not be as successful.
There are many ways to segment the population – the following is just one set of considerations:
Definition & Examples
The market is divided by location. The theory is that people who live in the same area share some similar needs.
Examples: region (pacific), city or metro (250,000 – 500,000 people), density (urban), or climate (southern).
The vital and measurable statistics of a population. Demographics help locate a target market, while psychological and sociocultural describe the market.
Examples: age (25-54), sex (F/M), Marital Status (single), income ($250,000+), education (high school/GED), and occupation (military).
The inner or intrinsic qualities of the individual consumer.
Examples: needs-motivation (shelter, safety), personality (extrovert), perception (low-risk), learning involvement (low-involvement), or attitudes (positive attitude).
Sociocultural variables divide the market based on stage of family life cycle, social class, etc. Based on the two studies: sociology (group) and anthropology (cultural).
Examples: cultures (American, Italian), religion (Catholic, Hindu), Subculture (African American), social class (upper, middle), and family life cycle (singles, empty nesters)
Closely aligned with psychological research, psychographic data is also sometimes referred to as “lifestyle” data, including a composite of a consumers’ measured activities, interests, and opinions (or referred to
in the industry as AIOs). Consumers respond to a large number of statements that measure activities (such as how they spend their time), interests (preferences or priorities – home fashion/food), and opinions
(how the consumer feels about a variety of events, political issues, social issues, etc.)
Examples: Lifestyle segmentation (economy minded, couch potatoes, status seekers, outdoor enthusiasts)
Categorizes consumers in terms of products/ service or brand usage characteristics.
Examples: user rate (heavy users, non users), awareness status (unaware, interested), brand loyalty (some, none, strong)
Sometimes the occasion or situation often determines what consumers will purchase.
Examples: time (leisure, work), objective (personal, gift), location (home, work), person (self, family member, boss)
Marketers strive to identify the one most important benefit of their product or service that will be most meaningful to consumers.
Examples: convenience, social acceptance, long lasting, economy, value for the money.
(Schiffman/Kanuk, p.37-50, and Kotler, p. 172)
And of course, one can combine any combination of the above approaches to further segment a market. Two of the most common combinations are Psychographic-Demographic profiles, Geo-demographic
For example, a high end department store might target what’s known as the “young influentials” market, which have the following characteristics:
1.1% of all U.S. Households
Age: Under 24, 25-34
Employment: Professional, White collar
Upwardly mobile singles and young couples.
The “young influentials” market are the last of the Yuppies. They frequently attend college basketball games, more likely to have an American Express card, often drink imported beers, listen to progressive rock
stations, and read style and fashion magazines. A high-end department store, such as Nordstrom, might find great success in marketing to such a group whose loyalties to specific department stores have yet to
Summary to Encourage Learning
The next time you go to the grocery store, look at all the different products that you encounter. What are the segments for frozen food products? Do different brands appeal to different segments of people? Try
describing these target markets. What type of market research do you think the marketers of these products obtained before positioning their brands?