Today’s highly competitive business world demands an entrepreneurial understanding of global management and marketing that encompasses present and future aspirations. Successful managers use qualitative and quantitative strategies to carve out a niche in particular businesses. The best managers are able to succeed in any environment by utilizing particular strategies in the most appropriate situations. However, a manager’s journey through global business includes being prepared to adapt skills and experiences to fit unforeseen situations. As confusion and uncertainty have grown in the global market over the past three years, success is elusive and the global market is unforgiving. As the old saying goes, “The best-laid plans by mice and men oft go awry.” Therefore, managers must be willing to plan, research and execute as efficiently as possible.
First and most importantly, management and marketing strategies must be identified that will take full advantage of market opportunities and core competencies for the company. Charles Hill (2013) recommends, “Maximizing the value of the firm by pursuing strategies that increase profitability of the enterprise and its rate of profit growth” (p. 418). Then, the market to which the product will be introduced must be analyzed. Philip Kotler and Kevin Keller (2011) recommend studying what influences consumer behavior, such as culture, reference groups, family, roles/status, age/stage in life cycle, occupation and economic circumstances (p. 151-156). Also, it will be helpful to determine where the product will fit into psychological processes such as Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs or Herzberg’s Theory. Each of these theories is equally important and can be used to determine what psychological factors influence consumer behavior. In addition, The Five-Stage Model of the Buying Decision Process expounds on the aforementioned topics and uses a basic process to help determine how and where key decisions are made in the buying process. By analyzing behavior factors, theory and decision making processes, managers can make educated projections regarding how successful products may or may not be.
Once the product’s market has been recognized and strategies are in place, building brand equity is the next logical step. There are three widely recognized brand equity models that can be used. The first is the Brandasset® Valuator, which focus on four key components: energized differentiation, relevance, esteem and knowledge. The second is the BrandZ model and places customers on the BrandDynamics Pyramid based on how they respond to a set of questions. Lastly, the brand resonance model is similar to the BrandZ model because it uses ascending steps from top to bottom. However, the brand resonance model uses six brand building blocks to emphasize the duality of brands. Duality in the brand resonance model refers to the rational and emotional routes consumers can choose to achieve the highest level of resonance with the brand (Kotler & Keller, 2011, p. 245-249). Each of these brand equity models place special emphasis on the steps that should be in place to build brand influence. Having these tools is great for markets, but there must also be a way to measure the brand equity to determine the level of success. Therefore, marketers can use the brand value chain, brand auditing and brand-tracking studies to collect quantitative from customers who are targeted.
Finally, effective marketing communications are integral to relay important business and product messages to customers. Many international companies focus on creating a strong global web to support country-specific marketing efforts (Hill, 2013, p. 426). In today’s digital media focused environment, companies are heavily utilizing E-mail lists, Facebook pages and Twitter accounts. The communications mix is important because it allows marketers and managers to choose the best avenues to reach their current and potential customers. If the product is targeted to a niche market, the best methods of advertising may be done at events, direct marketing or interactive marketing. Managers must also determine which management strategy will best fit the product. For example, a localization strategy may be best utilized in situations goods or services can be tailored to suit a country or region’s tastes and preferences. On the other hand, a global standardization strategy attempts to use economies of scale to create low-cost products that are marketable throughout the world (Hill, 2013, p. 436-437). The best method for new products is not always clearly seen and often takes time to determine the most effective modes of communication.
Utilizing and expounding on these general management and marketing techniques in a global business setting allows companies to take advantage of their entrepreneurial niche and set themselves apart. Clearly, there are many different strategies that can be deployed in certain situations and managers must be prepared to remain flexible and nimble throughout the process. Marketing is as much experimental as logical and when one formula does not work, another can be added to change the outcome. When managers lay the proper groundwork in the beginning relating to marketing and managing a product, the success rate will be higher than those who neglected it initially
Hill, C. W. L. (2013). International business: competing in the global marketplace. (Ed. 9). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.
Kotler, P., Keller, K.L. (2011). Marketing Management (14th ed.). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall.