The words marketing and management used to be one and the same. Management view marketing simply as a group of procedures that manage marketing campaigns and generate opportunities. They often built and/or purchased sophisticated computer systems that would enable them to analyze and access data, and design reports. Today however, these days marketing is evolving into an extremely complex arena of sophisticated tools, processes and data.
For the longest time, marketing was primarily concerned with gathering customer and prospect data. Marketers would use this data to identify their target market, formulate promotional campaigns and designs, research product pricing and promotions, and perform other necessary tasks necessary for the business to grow and succeed. Nowadays however, marketing is much more involved and incorporates a much greater variety of specialized tools. Marketers now rely on market research, targeted traffic, social media marketing and online analytics and data collection to formulate strategies, create new products and services, and monitor and improve upon the status of their company’s business practices. These days, marketing is a much more complex field of study, requiring not only specialized computer skills but also extensive knowledge and experience in the realm of technology.
The introduction of the Internet into the marketing arena changed everything, including marketing strategies. Now, instead of building and maintaining websites, marketers depend on search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing, pay per click (PPC) advertising and web content creation. Furthermore, rather than spending large sums of money on expensive print and television advertisements, companies rely on a combination of pay per click and paid inclusion in their websites. Because Internet marketing has evolved into such a large and diverse realm, the need for qualified individuals to understand these new marketing strategies is essential.
Marketing trends and strategies are constantly in a state of flux. Trends such as fashion, personal style, celebrity worship, food habits, and other consumer behaviors are continuously changing the face of marketing. The information available through popular social networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter have influenced the buying decisions of millions of consumers. The information available on the site blogs about products, consumer behavior, consumer reporting and the like has also created a large demand for articles written to inform the public. While the primary goal of this article is to introduce a new angle on the introduction of marketing, the ultimate goal is to provide insight to the changing consumer behavior.
Consumer segmentation is the foundation of marketing research. Consumer segmentation refers to the separation of markets into groups of people with similar purchasing preferences. While it can be very complicated to determine exactly who buys what, research is essential. Researching into what type of people buy particular items, tastes or services can help determine the best marketing strategies for each product type. Although there are many factors that contribute to consumer decision making, the most important ones are age, income level, gender and geographic location.
Marketing research can also help target the right group of people with specific offers. Researching into the consumer’s response to a marketing message is the most effective way to target the right customers. Marketing strategies become outdated very quickly; if they are not meeting the needs of today’s consumer, they should be adjusted or changed. Marketing sections are designed to analyze the responses of previous and current clients. This section should analyze the goals of the marketing campaign to ensure that it will meet current goals and desires. In addition to the section on the effectiveness of marketing, another segment in marketing reports focuses on consumer perceptions of a product or service.
A marketing research methodology is a series of questions designed to gather enough information to help determine if a business idea should be pursued. The answers gathered through this research process, also called market research methodology, will help provide an insight into the buying behavior of previous and current clients. Market research is used to inform advertisements, and helps explain why certain types of advertising are more effective than others. Marketing studies offer many benefits to companies that depend on advertising to generate new business. Understanding the market trends and the buying habits of consumers is the basis for successful advertising.
Marketing courses often include an introduction to rural marketing research methodology, because the topic is so prevalent in today’s society. The marketing of products or services in a rural setting is unique and requires an entirely different approach than marketing in a city or suburb. Rural areas are often overlooked by companies in the business of marketing, but with the right research and the willingness to take a risk, businesses that rely on the marketing of rural products and services can succeed.