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MK0901A a coursework on marketing Essays

The aim of this report is to assess and evaluate eight marketing articles and their contribution to marketing planning based on and relating too a number of definitions of marketing planning(MP). In order to achieve this; each article will be grouped to a similar article then looked at individually and then compared to the similar article in its group. Each of the articles will be looked at in relation to their contributions to marketing planning and whether or not the articles convey the elements needed to make an “ideal” marketing plan.  The report will then be concluded with what I think are the key elements that make a perfect marketing plan and which of the 8 articles best fits this description.

Introduction
A Marketing plan often has many varying elements which have been influenced by a wide range and number of sources. These elements include that of: Executive summary’s; Objectives ; Mission statements; SWOT analysis; Budgets; Timescales; PEST analysis and also; implementation and Control. Within a marketing plan different planning models such as the BCG matrix or the product life cycle may also be used.
According to Kotler et all 2003: marketing planning(MP) “is a process in a business that provides a systematic structure and framework for considering the future, appraising options and opportunity, and then selecting and implementing the necessary  activities for achieving the stated objectives efficiently and effectively”
However MP can also be described as: “a systematic process involving assessing marketing opportunities and capabilities, determining marketing objectives, agreeing target market and brand positioning strategies, seeking competitive advantage, creating marketing programmes, allocating resources and developing a plan for implementation and control.”Dibb and Simkin (2008, pg4)
From the above to definitions a new one can be formed and will be used to analyze and evaluate the 8 articles and their contribution to MP.
MP is a process that provides a structure to enable an organization to consider its future through the development and use of a number of elements including: objectives, strategies, implementation and control as well as time management; in order to achieve its goals and ideal profits from the target market share.

Grouping of the Eight Articles
After reading the 8 articles (see appendix I) it was decided that 4 different groups would be made, with each group containing 2 articles that were similar to one another.  The 4 different groups and the 2 articles within each group are:
1.   Theory Based Articles – Articles 3 and 7
2.   Planning Based Articles – Articles 4 and 8
3.   Marketing Planning Tool Based Articles – Articles 5 and 6
4.   Research Based Articles – Articles 1 and 2

Theory Based Articles
Article 7- Harris, L.C. (1996) “The application of Piercy and Morgan’s dimensions of marketing planning,” Management Decision, Vol.34, No.8, pg.620-625
Aims of Article
The aim of Harris’s article is to show its readers in relation to the case study of Company Q, the usefulness and methods of Piercy and Morgans model of the dimensions of marketing planning.
Contribution to MP
The article uses the model of dimensions of MP created by Piercy and Morgan to discuss a number of different components of marketing planning. Piercy and Morgan conclude with the “development of six hypotheses on the relationship between the dimensions of planning and the perceived credibility of plans. According to the theory the success of the developed plan is related to the ability of the organization to consider behavioural and organizational issues as well as analytical issues during planning.” Harris (1996, pg36)
Evaluation of Article
The article does not state a clear definition of MP but instead throughout the discussion uses some of the key components of MP when analyzing the case study. The case study uses only one example of the model successfully working and that is on the Company Q. Although the information provided in the case study helps the reader to understand the concepts of the model and also conveys the message that the model is a success. Due to the lack of comparison or use of other sources for the model being a success within other companies; It can be said that there is not enough reliable and sufficient evidence that can be found from the article to confirm that Piercy and Morgan’s model helps assist the success of MP.

 Definition of MP Analysis
Although the article discusses the importance of using plans it does not relate this to the concept of MP in conjunction with the organizations main objectives and goals. The article also fails to mention the need to review any plans that are being used, so that the company at all times understands and knows the current situation and what is to happen next. The use of the product life cycle or the 4 P’s which are seen as both a crucial and also key elements within a marketing plan are also missed from discussion within the article.

Article 3-Simkin, L. (1996) “Addressing organizational prerequisites in marketing planning programmes,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.14, No.5, pg.39-46.
Aims of Article
The aim of this article is to assess and analyze the different arguments of organizational prerequisites of MP based on Piercy’s argument that “the conventional route to putting together all the disparate bits and pieces [of marketing]- marketing strategies, marketing programmes, and marketing information- is via MP. He then claims that managers do not make these links between the planning process, analysis, strategy or programmes, and will not do so. Simkin (1996, pg39)
Contribution to MP
The article looks at ways in which organizations have set up methods, guides and checklists in order to understand and then implement that of MP. Throughout the article a number of different sources and theorist studies/opinions are used in order to portray the many different and contrasting thoughts on MP and its use within organizations such as McDonald, 1995 who emphasizes the need to have committed personnel who are highly motivated, understand the underlying concepts of marketing, but who have good relationships with other functional areas and with all levels of the managerial hierarchy. Without an understanding of the people and organizational issues, marketing initiatives are not guaranteed to be successfully and effectively implemented. Simkin (1996, pg40) shows that overall the processes and levels involvement of the marketing planning process can be conveyed as complicated and thus may be the reason that brings doubt to Piercy’s mind in relation to MP and its effectiveness within business organizations.

Evaluation of Article
The article does not have a clear meaning of what it regards as MP or in fact a list of key elements that should be included within a marketing plan. It does however use a number of different sources and theorists to emphasize the many different aspects of marketing planning which should be considered by businesses. However throughout the entirety of the article it does not have any evidence or state resources used to prove that the guides and checklists set up did actually improve marketing planning within businesses.
Definition of MP Analysis
In relation to the definition of MP the article fails to cover the vast majority of the key elements within a marketing plan. It talks briefly about the fact that when creating a marketing plan, it should be done along side that of the organizations main objectives. The main element of MP that the article discusses is that of implementation of a marketing plan and the different methods an organization can use.

Planning Based Articles
Article 4- Wilson, J.S. (2004) “Special events: Defining goals, planning and measuring success,” The Bottom Line: Managing Library Finances, Vol.17, No4, pg150-151.
Aims of Article:
The article explains to the reader all the different criteria that is needed to be carried out and followed in order for a successful completion of special events within a library.
Contribution to MP
The article can be linked quite closely with that of MP due to the article as a whole discussing the many different elements involved in that of special event planning. The article discusses the need to set aims and goals for the event. It also emphasizes the need for time scales and details the financial consequences that may be a risk to the planned event.
Evaluation of Article
The overall article does not have a clear definition of what MP is. However it does cover a large number of the key elements that are included in marketing planning, but touches on these in context of ‘normal’ planning rather than relation to that of marketing. The article has a clear structure and aim which allows its readers to clearly understand the different criterion that is needed to hold a successful special event. The article however lacks in resources and references used, resulting in the article being an opinion instead of fact.
Definition of MP Analysis
The article has no clear definition of what MP is or in fact what planning is. It does however cover a number of planning concepts throughout the article including that of time scales and objectives. The article also touches slightly on promotion which when related to MP falls under the concept of the 4 P’s. However although a number of the elements can be linked to MP through generalized terms, overall the article fails to discuss or mention anything to do with marketing.

Article 8- Hampson, S. (2007) “Balance and partnership in retail planning,” International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Vol.35, No.8, pg620-625
Aims of Article
The article looks at the changing dynamics that have occurred over the last 20 years within the UK in relation to the development of retail planning policy and its effects on the consumers and retailers.
Contribution to MP
The article discusses MP in relation to retailers and out of town shopping centre’s. It discusses the different trends and planning techniques that retailers use in order to increase their profits and sales, and also to improve their company profile. The article also explains the effects and impacts that the retailers and shopping centres have had on the city centres and their Central Business Districts as well as the local communities. Hampson (2007, pg624) describes how “A balanced approach to planning and the benefits of partnership needs commitment from participants and all side,” Including that of developers and planners. In relation to MP the author Hampson (2007 pg624) goes on to discuss elements such as finance, time, planning ,frame work and consistency when he states that one of the key driving forces for out-of-town development has been frustration with planning processes which are too slow, disjointed, complex and expensive.

Evaluation of Article
Overall the article is very vague when it comes to defining the meaning of MP and the ways in which to implement them into an organization. Although the article discusses the case of John Lewis it has no evidence or findings gathered from a varied number of sources, to state whether or not different locations and planning techniques of retailers actually have an effect on the retailers themselves or on the city centers’.
Definition of MP Analysis
Article 8 overall touches slightly on some of the key concepts of MP, including that of objectives however each of the elements mentioned are not gone into detail and the article only touches on the each of the ideas. The article however does not mention a clear definition of MP, nor does it include those elements such as implementation and control.

MP Tool Based Articles
Article 5- Chattopadhyay, S.P. (2001) “Relationship marketing in an enterprise resource planning environment,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.9, No.2, pg136-139
Aims of Article
This article proposes the “framework of merging the concepts of product life cycle (PLC) and customer relationship management (CRM)” Chattopadhyay, S.P. (2001) pg 136 to make the new concept of: customer relationship life cycle (CRLC). Where it explains the key concepts for an organization to keep a hold of existing customers but, also, to be able to attract new consumers from different market areas by using the framework of both the PLC and CRM.
Contribution to MP
MP can be related to this article through a number of different concepts and tools used within the article. The main tool or concept that the article describes is that of a CRLC. This new concept is where the article merges the marketing strategy of CRM (consistent application of best practices…..that make effective and optimal use of people, technology and other resources to achieve organizational objectives.”) Chattopadhyay, S.P. (2001) and the strategy of PLC together to form the new marketing strategy: CRLC where organizations “orchestrate their resources and competences to support the changing needs” Chattopadhyay, S.P. (2001) and the wants of the consumer, allowing the business to have a successful and effective Marketing plan and therefore maintain its place in the market.

Evaluation of Article
The article does not have an overall definition of MP however, throughout the article the author uses very good and clear meanings of the different marketing concepts that have been used, such as CRLC and CRM. The reader has a clear Idea of what is being discussed. Although the article discusses a number of key MP elements it does not go into a great deal of depth within each of the elements. The article uses a number of different resources such as Brewer 1998, and also Ferrell et all 1999, to convey to the reader the significance of the marketing tool that is CRLC.
Definition of MP Analysis
The article as stated above does not have an individual meaning for MP by its self. However when discussing the concepts of CRM and PLC the article conveys to the reader the importance of elements such as objectives, time planning and assessing, implementation and control and the importance of the consumers needs and wants within an organizations planning strategy.

Article 6- Clutterbuck, D. (2006) “Succession Planning: A developmental approach,” Development and Learning in Organisations, Vol.19, No.5, pg11-13
Aims of Article
The article discusses that of succession planning through that of staffing and methods that can be uses to help motivate and develop the skills that the staff have and need for their current job roles or for future promotion within a company. The article also explores ways in which organizations can improve on their methods used.
Contribution to MP
Article 6 talks about succession planning and how it relates to MP through the motivation and development plans of employees for organizations. it believes that an organization will benefit and develop further into the market place if its members of staff are well motivated and willing to learn and adapt to new methods.
Evaluation of Article
This article does not contain a definition of what is MP, nor does it cover any of the key elements that can be found within a marketing plan. The whole article is based on the writers’ opinion and is not backed up with any other resources it can therefore be said to be unreliable.
Definition of MP Analysis
Overall this article is very vague and does not seem to have much in common with that of MP. There is no definition stated of what MP is, and it also fails to mention any of the key concepts and elements – such as objectives or implementation and control – which make up a marketing plan.

Research Based Articles
Article 1- Bunnell, T. (2006) “Strategic Marketing Planning in International Schools,” International Journal of Education Management, Vol.19, No.1, pg59-66

Aims of Article
The article explores the issues of International schools and the ways in which they follow and implement a marketing plan. The article looks at the findings of a survey that was completed by 32 international schools that are located across 22 different countries.

Contribution to MP
The article describes how 70% of the schools that took part in the questionnaire believed they should have a marketing plan in place; however the results show that of that 70% only 55% of the schools were actually using a marketing plan. These plans however were not getting reviewed throughout a year. Instead it was apparent that the majority of the schools reviewed their plans between 1 and 5 years. Bunnell 2006, states in his report “that 30 % of the schools think it is simply too costly and time consuming to have long term plans in international schools”. A lot of small international schools believe that if they put in place a plan then there numbers will increase resulting in them not being able to maintain their current selling point of: providing small class sizes and low teacher pupil-ratios.” Bunnell (2005, pg64)
Evaluation of Article
The article uses research techniques to identify the different processes and elements involved in MP. By using a number of different schools the data is more valid than if had just based the research within the one area. However to make the findings more accurate a wider range of locations should have been used.
Definition of MP Analysis
The article which although does not have a clear definition of MP it touches on the subject of SWOT analysis, the Ansoff and Boston Matrix however it does not discuss them in anyway or in which they relate to marketing planning through the use of such elements as objectives. The article discusses also the idea of long term planning and that of strategic planning in relation to a MP.

Article 2- Abratt, R. and Higgs, N. (1994) “Marketing planning practices of South African companies,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.12, No.2, pg26-31
Aims of Article
The article explores to what extent and how 200 South African Companies from the Johannesburg Stock Exchange use that of a marketing plan .The methodology used in this study was that of survey’s and questionnaires that were sent out to the 200 different companies within in the stock exchange, with all the composed questions relating to the companies use of a marketing plan in order to achieve their intended goals.
Contribution to MP
The article uses the methodology of a questionnaire to investigate whether or not companies a marketing plan. The study was carried out using 200 companies in South Africa. The results were then compared to that of previous studies where it was found that in the UK and USA the majority of companies tested fail to fail to use a comprehensive marketing planning process. (Abratt &Higgs (1994,pg26)) Out of the 200 companies surveyed 73 were returned promptly and it was found that most companies did use MP and also that they reviewed their MP regularly. However it was also found that almost 50% stated that the process is very timely and can take up to a month to complete.

Evaluation of Article
The article uses the research method of detailed questionnaires to compare the MP techniques and implementation of MP of South Africa with that of previous studies within the UK and USA. The article although does not state a clear definition of what MP is, is uses a large number of the key elements that make up MP. Although 200 were surveyed only 73 returned the question papers and therefore it can not be seen as an accurate finding if they assumed that they needed have more than 100 to make it accurate. The companies that returned the surveys were small localised businesses and therefore it can not be concluded that all S African businesses use MP as it does not take into account that of large mainstream organizations.
Definition of MP Analysis
Although the article does not have clear definition of MP, it does discuss many of the crucial elements of MP including that of reviewing, objectives and time scales as well using the 4 P’s within the use of its customer analysis.

Comparison of Grouped Articles

Articles 3 and 7 both used the theories of Piercy and Morgan and their model in relation to marketing planning. Article 7 has no other resources mentioned within the article, while article 3 uses a number of different resources to highlight its content. The articles don’t discuss in a lot of detail the key concepts and elements in a marketing plan however they both touch on slightly the implementation aspect of marketing planning. This however is the only element discussed in article 7, where as in article 3 it mentions both that of objectives and the importance of reviewing a marketing plan. Therefore it can be said that out of the 2 articles, article number 3 relates better to that of marketing planning.
Articles 4 and 8 in relation to marketing planning did not include any meanings and definitions of marketing planning, although article 4 did described the concept of planning on a general basis with elements such as objectives time frames, and implementation being discussed, where as article 8 only briefly discussed that of objectives. Article 4 although did not have any other resources used could be described as the better article out of the 2 articles under this group.
Articles 5 and 6 used different marketing tools which help aid the processes of marketing planning. Neither of the articles had a definition of marketing planning although article 5 did convey the importance of different elements of marketing planning when discussing different marketing tools such as the product life cycle. Article 6 didn’t seem to relate to marketing planning at all. It did not discuss any of the key elements such as objectives or implementation. Article 5 uses a number of different resources where as article 6 is based entirely on the authors opinion. Therefore it is clear that in this group article 5 best fits the definition of marketing planning.
Articles 1 and 2 both use research based methods, where in article 1 a questionnaire was carried out and in article 2 a survey was completed. Both articles by using the wide range of data collected means that the results are more valid and meaningful than if they had only surveyed 5 or 10 people. Both the articles use a number of different resources to carry out their studies in order to collate valid findings. In relation to marketing planning both articles discuss that of having objectives as well as a number of key elements that make up a marking plan. However, article 1 does not indicate the importance of implementing a marking plan where as although article 2 fails to mention implication it does go on to discuss the importance of reviewing a marking plan. Overall it can be seen that the best article from the researched based group is that of article 2.

Conclusion
It can be concluded from this report that although within each of the different groups’ categorized that one article is better than the other for a number of different reasons.  The article which relates best to that of the MP definition at the beginning of the report is that of article 2. This article uses a wide range of resources to collect and highlight the points and also its findings as well as discussing in a number of ways the many different elements that make up MP. It discusses that of objectives and the importance of reviewing the objectives and plan within the organization.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
·         Abratt, R. and Higgs, N. (1994) “Marketing planning practices of South African companies,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.12, No.2, pg26-31.
·         Brassington, F and Pettitt, S. (2005) Principles of Marketing. 3rd edition. Pearson Publishing:  Essex England
·         Bunnell, T. (2006) “Strategic Marketing Planning in International Schools,” International Journal of Education Management, Vol.19, No.1, pg59-66.
·         Chattopadhyay, S.P. (2001) “Relationship marketing in an enterprise resource planning environment,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.9, No.2, pg136-139.
·         Clutterbuck, D. (2006) “Succession Planning: A developmental approach,” Development and Learning in Organisations, Vol.19, No.5, pg11-13.
·         Dibb,S; Ferrell, O.C; Pride, W and Simkin L.(2006) Marketing Concepts and Strategies. 5th Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company. USA
·         Dibb, S. & Simkin, L. (2008) Marketing Planning- A workbook for Marketing Managers. 1st Edn. London: Cengage Learning.
·         Hampson, S. (2007) “Balance and partnership in retail planning,” International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Vol.35, No.8, pg620-625.
·         Harris, L.C. (1996) “The application of Piercy and Morgan’s dimensions of marketing planning,” Management Decision, Vol.34, No.8, pg.620-625.
·         Kotler, P. (2000) Marketing Management. Millennium edition. Prentice Hall. USA
·         Kotler et al, 2002, Principals of Marketing, 2nd edition, UK London, Prentice Hall
·         Kotler, P and Armstrong, G and Saunders, J and Wong, V. (2005) Principles of Marketing. 4th edition. Pearson Education: Italy
·         Simkin, L. (1996) “Addressing organizational prerequisites in marketing planning programmes,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.14, No.5, pg.39-46.
·         Wilson, J.S. (2004) “Special events: Defining goals, planning and measuring success,” The Bottom Line: Managing Library Finances, Vol.17, No4, pg150-151.
APPENDIX I
The Articles
Article 1- Bunnell, T. (2006) “Strategic Marketing Planning in International Schools,” International Journal of Education Management, Vol.19, No.1, pg59-66

Article 2- Abratt, R. and Higgs, N. (1994) “Marketing planning practices of South African companies,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.12, No.2, pg26-31

Article 3-Simkin, L. (1996) “Addressing organizational prerequisites in marketing planning programmes,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.14, No.5, pg.39-46.

Article 4- Wilson, J.S. (2004) “Special events: Defining goals, planning and measuring success,” The Bottom Line: Managing Library Finances, Vol.17, No4, pg150-151.

Article 5- Chattopadhyay, S.P. (2001) “Relationship marketing in an enterprise resource planning environment,” Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol.9, No.2, pg136-139

Article 6- Clutterbuck, D. (2006) “Succession Planning: A developmental approach,” Development and Learning in Organisations, Vol.19, No.5, pg11-13

Article 7- Harris, L.C. (1996) “The application of Piercy and Morgan’s dimensions of marketing planning,” Management Decision, Vol.34, No.8, pg.620-625

Article 8- Hampson, S. (2007) “Balance and partnership in retail planning,” International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Vol.35, No.8, pg620-625

 

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