Some of the most important functions of marketing management are :- 1. Planning 2. Organizing 3. Coordinating 4. Staffing 5. Directing 6. Evaluating 7. Controlling.
Function – 1. Planning:
This requires the description of the formal approach and processes. At this stage, an overview is made of the total integrated system of short and long-term planning in the firm and of the marketing information required for plans.
The short-term planning usually extends to the yearly forecasting of sales, preparation of marketing programmes and formulation of policies in relation to the long-range plans with respect to products, production, prices, advertisement, distribution, etc. Thus, planning for marketing begins with strategic company planning.
The ground work for market planning involves seeking appropriate answers to the pertinent questions like:
Marketing planning considerations for a firm:
Products and Customers:
1. What products and services do we offer?
2. What products and services should we offer?
3. Who are our customers and what are their needs, now and in the future?
Industry and Markets:
1. What are the characteristics of the industry and market?
2. What are the significant trends within the industry and market?
1. What is the present strength of resources with regard to money, manpower, production capabilities, distribution systems, etc.?
2. What plans should we adopt far strengthening resources in each of the areas?
Function – 2. Organising:
Having determined the marketing objectives and plans, it is necessary to carry out and implement then in an organised manner.
Organising the marketing function involves the major steps as follows:
1. Identification/determination of marketing activities.
2. Logical grouping of related activities.
3. Fixation/delegation of authority and responsibility within these groups.
4. Establishment of working relationships among the groups that will enable the assignment vis-a-vis performance of the group’s efforts and activities to realise the marketing objectives.
In this managerial function, the tasks or jobs related to marketing can be divided into two categories:
1. Operating tasks, and
2. Management tasks.
The first involves the work required to sell the products and services, while the second category is concerned with the supervision of the operating tasks.
For this purpose, an organisation structure of the marketing function (i.e. department) is developed to accommodate both these tasks requirements. Very often the structure will be an overlapping or a hybrid one. For example, a marketing department may have a manager for each marketing operation (such as sales, advertising, customer service, forecasting and market research).
In addition, there might also be a manager for each major product lire, who handles the management of each product and so is responsible for planning, controlling and coordinating the various product activities performed by each operating manager.
Function – 3. Coordinating:
Co-ordination is the orderly arrangement of group efforts to provide unity of action in the pursuit of common purpose.
The elemental activities viz. product selection and planning, product pricing, marketing channels selection, market research and development, advertising, sales promotion, etc., are needed to be harmonised in such a way that they facilitate the working and success of the marketing function in the best interest of the total organisation unit.
It is said that the marketing function starts even before the commencement of production and ends with the’ after-sales service to the customers. In this sense, co-ordination between the activities of marketing development and other departments is necessarily to be maintained.
Function – 4. Staffing:
Staffing involves manning, and keeping manned, the positions provided for by the organisation structure. Manning a marketing function thus necessitates defining manpower requirements for the job to be dare, and includes inventorying, appraising, and selecting candidates for positions; and training or otherwise developing both candidates and incumbents to accomplish the marketing tasks efficiently and effectively.
In this respect, the marketing manager has to perform the functions like knowing the job (i.e. job specification, job analysis, job grading, etc.) and knowing the man in order to develop an efficient marketing force.
Function – 5. Directing:
It is said that management is the art of getting things done through and with people. The concept of direction or directing involves guiding and supervising subordinates.
The marketing manager, thus, retains responsible to inculcate in – his subordinates a keen sense of marketing policies and strategies. He has to motivate the subordinates through his leadership so that the market-oriented organisational goals are achieved.
Thus, the direction function of the marketing management has to per- four essential activities:
(1) Issuing orders and instructions to the marketing personnel;
(2) Guiding and counselling the marketing staff in the proper execution of the work assigned;
(3) Ensuring the performance according to the plans, policies and strategies that have been set; and strategies that have been set; and
(4) Developing the personnel in- consistent with the corporate mission as to long-term plans.
Function – 6. Evaluating:
Evaluation involves interpreting the performance through the objective and subjective analysis so that the marketing force may came to know:
(1) Where they have erred,
(2) How they have erred, and
(3) Where they stand so far as their work and efficiency is concerned.
Again, evaluating is a kind of managerial instrument that helps to understand the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats associated with the marketing effort and market competition. It is the duty of the marketing manager to make an assessment of the business environment both internal and external – in relation to the past, present and projected future.
Further, the evaluation aspects of the marketing management are concerned with the product factors analysis and product performance analysis in relation to the markets and competition.
The product factors analysis is a qualitative evaluation of each significant product line and its markets. It is decency a comparative evaluation between the line of business and all competitive products. The product factors are analysed by the primary functional areas of the business and competition is reviewed.
The findings of this analysis are summarised in terms of threats and opportunities for each product line with reference to the following parameters:
i. Current size and share of market served.
ii. Annual compound growth rate of market served.
iii. Internal sales growth rate compounded for the past periods.
iv. Demand forecast and elasticities.
i. Competitors including the entity accounting for the largest sales in the markets served.
ii. Relative market share compared to the largest competitor.
iii. Changes in market share position – own vs. competitors.
i. State of the arts and sciences.
ii. Entity’s own technical skills.
iii. Relative technical position compared to the competitors.
iv. Competitors’ technical advantage.
a. Gross margin.
b. Productivity growth rate.
c. Average age of existing producing equipment.
d. Specific production advantage over competitors.
a. Cash flow.
b. After tax return on sales.
c. Return on assets.
d. Capacity utilisation.
e. Contribution per product line.
a. Reviewing past performance and future potentials.
b. Ascertaining current strengths and weaknesses.
c. Assessing threats and opportunities.
The product performance analysis is a quantitative assessment of each significant product and its markets. It starts with a critical estimate of the measures of performance during the past few periods. Historical performance data are used for this exercise.
In this quantitative assessment, the specific data categories included are:
1. Product identification
2. Product life
3. Market size
4. Market growth rates
5. Sales volume
6. After-tax flew.
With these information, performance measures for each period are calculated.
They usually include:
1. Market share
2. Annual product sales growth
4. Return on sales
5. Return on assets
6. Assets turnover.
Function – 7. Controlling:
Control compels events to conform to plans. With respect to marketing management, it implies the measurement of accomplishment against the standard and correction of deviations to assure attainment of objectives according to the marketing plans.
The basic control process, whenever found and whatever controlled, involves three steps:
1. Establishing standards in respect of each component of marketing function.
2. Measuring performance against the component-wise standards.
3. Correcting deviations from standards and plans.
The marketing manager performs all these control functions.
A simple feedback is charted below to explain the managerial control function involved in marketing: