The biggest challenge for the firms in this epoch is to operate in the turbulent environment which is disruptive, fragmented, unstable, and the fast changing. The normative marketing theories substitute the prior theories of marketing to gain the advantage in the chaotic environment. The firms can succeed in the present market conditions if they can cope with the turbulent environment.
With the changing era, the normative marketing theory took the place of marketing theory. These theories described the right things which should exist. The concepts of entrepreneurial marketing and contextual marketing developed with times which are discussed in this part. The managers devise the strategies keeping in mind the disruptive, unstable, fragmented, and fast changing environment. The normative marketing theories are adopted by the managers to succeed in the turbulent environment.
2.0 Marketing Theory
It is very difficult to ascertain the nature of marketing theory in today’s fast changing environment. The matter has remained unanswered for more than 40 years (Saren, 2000 in marketingteacher.com). Any single test of marketing theory has not been successful because of the diverse nature of markets, different amount of information to the competitors and the managers create different marketing plans. It is very tricky to generate marketing theory with single philosophy (marketingteacher.com).
2.1 Different Marketing Theories
The different marketing theories have been developed with time. The various useful marketing theories include Value Innovation and The Value Curve Theory, Porter’s Five Forces of Competition Framework, Market-Oriented Ethnography, Brand Personality Dimensions Framework, Hierarchy of Effects Models, Service Mapping, Brand Relationship Spectrum, Change Equation, Balanced Scorecard, Doyle’s Five Criteria for Segmentation, Conjoint Analysis, Dirichlet, and Bass Model: Diffusion of Innovations and a range of various other theories (Marketingjournal, 2005).
3.0 Normative Marketing Theory
The normative marketing theory consists of the directions for the firm in taking the decisions related to their strategies and plans. For succeeding in this competitive world, the managers need the marketing theories for making effective strategies. The normative marketing theories have changed from less complicated phase to the more complicated phase with the passage of time. The decision of managers and role of normative marketing theories changes with the environment in which the firm is operating (Wilkinson and Young, 2005: 4).
Normative marketing theories describe what should or ought to be. In the marketing context, all marketing theories are considered to be the normative theories. The various marketing theories are stuffed with the normative claims.
4.0 Entrepreneurial Marketing (EM)
In narrow terms, Entrepreneurial Marketing was described as the marketing issues of small and new ventures. But, in broader sense, Entrepreneurial Marketing considers the marketing activities handled with the entrepreneurial frame of mind and the size of the firm is not considered (Kraus, Harms & Fink, 2009).
4.1 Aspects of Entrepreneurial Marketing (Kraus, Harms & Fink, 2009)
There are several aspects of entrepreneurial marketing which includes value creation, growth, innovation, organisation creation, and the various aspects of entrepreneur. The several aspects of entrepreneurial marketing are categorised as quantitative and qualitative aspects.
4.1.1 Quantitative aspects
Less sophisticated tools are used for the marketing of small and new ventures as compared to the large enterprises. In 1990s, it was believed to formulate the primitive marketing theories for the purpose of marketing. The normative marketing theories were developed taken into account the challenges faced by new organisations. The challenges faced by the small firms include the limited financial resources, small customer base, and limited human resources. Being a new firm in the market, the organisation faces the challenge of lack of trust.
The entrepreneur may not understand the significance of marketing in SMEs and dependant on the single entrepreneur may prove to be harmful. Also, the firm has to implement such normative marketing theory that creates trust among the customers for the brand. The normative marketing theory lays down the importance of timely corporate brand-building process which includes the external as well as internal stakeholders. The theories are implemented in the initial phases of the business. As the time passes, the business gains its own style of marketing.
4.1.2 Qualitative Aspects
Entrepreneurship Marketing acts as the interface between entrepreneurship and marketing. Considering the qualitative aspect of Entrepreneurship Marketing, it includes the way in which the marketing activities are taken up by the entrepreneurs. It comprises of qualities of the entrepreneur such as creativity, flexibility, ability to work under pressure and find solutions to the complex problems, risk orientation, value creation, and pro activeness (Kurgun, 2011).The normative marketing theories based on above characteristics are distinguished from the traditional marketing theories. As the traditional marketing theories were more customers centric and the normative marketing theories are the innovation oriented. Entrepreneurial Marketing may use Guerilla Marketing; Buzz Marketing, and Viral Marketing for the purpose of promotion. A successful marketing theory involves focus of the entrepreneur on product, place and price. It becomes hard to survive in the competitive market with the unsuccessful entrepreneurship marketing techniques ((Kraus, Harms & Fink, 2009).
5.0 Contextual Marketing (CM)
When the online marketing services are used for the purpose of increasing sales, revenues and visibility of the products and services, it is known as contextual marketing. It helps in reaching the prospective customers at the moment they show their interest in the product. The contextual marketing also helps in the higher conversion rates. There are a number of benefits of contextual marketing which includes automatic campaign adjustments, greater conversion rates, and multiple choices of optimisation (beyondroi.com).
The activities included in contextual marketing are considered to be complex as this approach is the concept of situation-specific approach. There are some key factors which provide the nearby information about each context marketing activity. Under this concept, the small firms indulge in marketing with the unique context in the specific situation (Deacon & Harris, 2011).
5.1 Aspects of Contextual Marketing
The personality of the owner of the small business and the personalised use of language plays a vital role in the business development. Also the handling of situation specific factors by the owner is of great importance for the successful business.
6.0 Post Modern Condition and Normative Theory
The era of post modern marketing is highly unpredictable and consists of some key features like fragmentation, no brand loyalty among the customers and the inverted production and consumption. It is very difficult to stick the customers to one brand in the competitive world. There is a difference between post modern marketing and normative marketing. The post modern marketing does not distinguish between right and the wrong whereas normative marketing theories describe what is right.
7.0 Normative Theories of Marketing and Types of Environment
There is no relevance for the normative marketing theory which is appropriate for the single environment. The normative marketing theory should go with the exiting environment. This will help the managers to devise the strategies according to the changing environment. There are different types of environment in which the business operates. It includes the random placid environment where the firm has no market position and is just like a fish in the pond, clustered placid environments where the things are clustered together in time and co-occurrence of other things is seen as co-producers of certain desired effects (Emery, 1977: 7) and the small fish in the pond learnt to move to certain locations, disturbed reactive environments where there are two or more competitors and turbulent environments where the environment is not static (Wilkinson and Young, 2005). The turbulent environment includes disruptive, fragmented, unstable, and fast changing environment.
7.1 Disruptive Environment
If we consider an example, in the disruptive environment, the huge costs are coupled with the upgrading the technology in the communication system. As a result, the firms will no longer remain eager to adopt new form of communication tools because of the constantly changing technology in the disruptive environment (Fang Wu, 2005).
Another example is the designing of institutions for better governance is a challenge under normative theory. Normative theory describes the values that are needs to be promoted inside the organisation. The structures and behaviours inside the organisation take place with some major disruption in the environment (Stoker, 2004: 31).
7.2 Fragmented Environment
Porter suggested that there are five stages in environmental evolution including fragmentation, emerging, mature, declining, and global. But still the global environment remains unpredictable. Porter also suggested implementing the formalised competitor analysis system and collection of information about the environments of the firms in which they are operating. In addition, Porter also defined the uneven rate of environmental evolution (Lenz, 2008).
7.3 Unstable Environment
The unstable markets are featured by dynamic inefficiencies and the instabilities also result in the wastage of scarce resources (Hertog, 2010). The organisations are in the need of such systems and processes which can cope with the unstable environment and turbulence. Market Growth is unstable process according to Glass (1996). Customers grow in the market with the change in the tastes and preferences. When a new segment is identified, sales grow. But with the time, the sales start to level off. The company which is slow in entering the new market can finish up with investing in the declining market (Mason, 2003).
There is high level of uncertainty in the consumer behaviour. Interconnections are required between the buyers and sellers to judge the behaviour of the consumers. Levitt (1983) focussed on building the strong firms and the customer’s relationships to cope up with the unstable and unpredictable demand patterns (Mason, 2003).
7.4 Fast Changing Environment
A small time gap between the product manufacturing and the point when it reaches the customer may cause negative impact on the profits of the firms in this fast changing environment. The marketers need to obtain the new information every time to understand the customers and act accordingly. Sometimes, the management are not able to develop the required strategies on time in the fast changing environment (Mason, 2003).
8.0 Turbulent Environment
In the Turbulent environment, the actions taken by the managers for reducing the uncertainty may lead to the unpredictability. And the state of disequilibrium exists in the marketplace. The complexity of the environment needs to be understood by the marketers for strategising the policies (Mason R). The environmental management perspective may be used by the organisations for creating its influence over the environment (Zeithaml, 1984). The firms should be aware of the sensitive outcomes in this environment.
It has become much more difficult for the firms to survive in turbulent environment as compared to that of the earlier times. The normative marketing theory has taken the places of old marketing theories and elaborates the firms what should be done to succeed in the market. Also, the concepts of entrepreneurial marketing and contextual marketing emerged with reference to the normative marketing theories. The naturalistic and normative approach of marketing should be adopted to make business successful in this disruptive, fast-changing, fragmented and unstable environment.
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