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Reflective report

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I started working on this measuring marketing related task in early days of November
2009. When, I started working, my views about the topic were not very clear and whole
picture was quite hazy. The very first thing, I did was to sit in front of my lap top and
searching about measuring marketing on internet. There are many sites which came up
instantly, giving me initial idea, as to what it actually means and what is its importance
in modern business world. Once I got rough idea about marketing measurement, I
started talking to my friends about it and initiated discussions among friends from
marketing specialization. This way, not only me, but my friends also got involved in the
topic and started exploring various sources of data & literature on this issue. But we all
realised very soon that topic we are looking for is comparatively new and not much
about it is available in books. Traditional books contained material on marketing
techniques and promotional methods, but not about tools which can help in measuring
effectiveness of marketing programs. But we did not get discouraged and started looking
for other horizons, from where we could have got material. This was the time, when we
started visiting libraries in Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi University and Indra
Prastha University. But we soon observed that libraries were not of much help as these
had traditional books only. In fact, It were only journals which had articles, on
measuring marketing not the traditional books. Latest books on issues get in to libraries
only after year or so. Finally efforts are being put on internet again, where assessing
articles are bit difficult as most of the good articles get in paid sites. But internet proved
very useful in locating desired articles at various places. During whole process of getting
acquainted with the subject and collecting material on the topic, I kept discussing the
issue of measuring marketing with my friends in academics as well as in industry. I had
started making notes of various articles which i got in journals, books and at on internet.
At the same time, my discussions with friends in in industry kept enhancing my
practical knowledge about the topic and making me aware about various practical issues
which organisations generally face when these try to implement mechanism of
marketing measurement. Finally, i can say that learning and developing concepts about

marketing measurement took me from internet to libraries then to journal. But it was
not sufficient as , I have to interact with friends in academics and industry to get a
practical understanding of subject and issues involved. I felt during whole process that
academics is a bit behind industry in a sense, that events and advancements in handling
these take place before in industry first, and then taken up by academics systematise
knowledge acquired in business world. But there is no doubt that it helps others in
industry in avoiding mistakes which few did in past or to adopt new moves taken by
other companies to get ahead and be successful.
During the whole process of getting this work done, i personally learnt about importance
of measuring outcome of everything in life. It is very much true that in every walk of life,
we need to measure output for efforts we put in any area of life. A sales man is asked to
show figures as how much he has been able to sell. A doctor is asked to give figures as to
how many patients he has attended. A lawyer is asked to give the number of cases he has
been able to won for his clients. Even a small kid going to school in fist standard has to
show results as how much marks or grade he has been able to secure. Similarly in
business activities, performance of all the departments are measured. Either it is
production, procurement or human resource management department, each one is
asked to show their performance in terms of hard facts and figures. But a hard reality is
also that for marketing department, there are very less accountability as to what they
have been able to achieve for investment incurred on their activities. While working on
this project I learnt that it is the measurement for each activity, which is the first step if
we want to manage it. Giuliani, the former mayor of New York City also said the same
thing that measurement is a must, if we want to manage anything. Otherwise also, we all
know that basic function of management is to control and direct functioning of
organisations so that resources can be best utilised in achieving business objectives. This
study strengthened my views regarding measuring performance of each and every
business functionary. It is very much true that performance of every functional
department is business is evaluated and then only budget is allotted for their further
activities. But it is only marketing department which ask increment in its budget without
putting in figures of performance for their previous year programs. Marketing
department rely on qualitative explanations for their demands for higher budget, which
gets less favour from others. Sometimes even higher management don't get convinced
by the rationale given by marketing department for budget enhancements. Many of my
friends in industry told me that marketing professionals ask for budget allocation based
upon a annual increment in last year budget or just a percentage of total budget of the

organisation. But management feels that this not a proper rationale for allocating
budget as increasing competition is putting up pressure on margins, which ask for
smarter use already depleting resources for the organisation. While going through all
these discussion, I personally got convinced that marketing department must come out
clearly for the facts and figures for previous budgetary allocation utilisation and its
outcomes. Keeping the marketing domain an mysterious in not going to make the
system anymore credible and accountable. If we want to make the operations of
marketing department more credible, transparent and on professional lines, we have to
make measurement a reality for performance of marketing team.
It was also noticed, that industry people keeps flexibility in their views and actions so as
to avoid any stronger resentment from employees, which may make their working
unstable. It was also notices that there is scarcity of employees who are of quality and
perform. There performing employees become habitual of liberty and freedom in their
working. These employees take it negative, when attempts are made to measure their
performance output. So, company has to be very cautious in implementing measuring
marketing mechanism. It should not happen that efforts to map the mysterious world of
marketing, turns out in loosing few brilliant and performing marketing employees. It
happens when measuring exercise is perceived as initiated by middle management. That
is the reason, why involvement and active support of top level management is always
looked for this type of initiatives. May be, that all functioning and direction for these
moves comes from middle management only, but perception in industry should come as
it is a initiative of top management.
I also learnt during this whole process, that business world is becoming more and more
completive by each passing day. Now days top management, which had absolute control
over the functioning of the company till few years back, it is not same now. Middle
management now has reasonable say in the way activities are directed and controlled.
Middle management wants more say and liberty in functioning. This makes job of top
management a bit more difficult. This situation has been fuelled more as competition is
growing and at the same time demand for competent & performing employees. This is
the biggest hurdle top management is facing now days in bringing in transparency and
accountability in the functioning of marketing departments.
During the working I came across few interesting examples, as how measuring
marketing helped some large organisations, in not only saving funds but bringing in

more objectivity in the functioning of marketing divisions of company. One such


example was of Coca Cola in India. Coca Cola advertising campaign was mainly based
upon the targeting economically well off college going youngsters. Keeping in view, that
this ia the class which remain active and interested in moves at national level, company
focussed its advertisement campaign on television. Company also had a focussed
strategy to give advertisement in mot popular news channels and family entertainment
channel. These channels are with wide reach and appeal. Coca Cola advertisements were
placed in prime time slots and these popular new channels and family entertainment
channels. Costing for these popular news and family entertainment channels were very
high. Company went ahead with advertising campaign on these looking for similar high
returns in terms of sales resulting in revenue generation. But even after investing
substantial amount of money, company revenue figures were not showing much
incremental growth. This whole exercise put a question mark on the effectiveness of
advertisement campaign. Then some serious discussions were made, and ultimately a
exercise for measuring marketing was taken up. A survey encompassing whole of India
was taken up to identify the consumer base and their likings, so as possible contact
domain can be identified. There were few very interesting facts came out in this survey.
It eas found that most of the consumers for Coca Cola are college going youngsters who
come from economically well of families. It was also found that most of this consumer
base is in metropolitan cities only. It was also noticed that this consumer group is not
watching family entertainment channels or news channels, though these were very
popular among overall population. This metro based consumer group, which formed
major chunk of whole consumer lot, was watching English movie channels, spots
channels and channels like National geographic etc. It was also found that giving
advertisement in family entertainment and news channels were even affecting prospects
of the company negatively. Equipped, with these findings of the survey, company made
a swift change in its advertising policy in media channels. When pondering started for
new advertisement policy, it came to notice, that English movie channels, sports
channels and channel with adventure contents were far less costly as compared to family
entertainment channels and popular news channels. So there was a major policy change
in advertising campaign of Coca Cola company. Company started giving advertisements
on these identified television channels and cut on the popular family entertainment
channels like Star, Zee, Sahara and Sony etc. It not only saved the finances of the
company but resulted in desired positive impact on the audiences resulting in increase
in revenue. So finally company were able to make smarter use of its resources in

marketing operation. This shows the importance of measuring marketing not only in
medium size companies but even in large size organisations.
My experience about group working had not been very good as people show varying
degree of interest in working. I felt that few members were very enthusiastic for work
where as other members have not been very enthusiastic about putting in efforts. On
various occasions, my sincere requests to accompany me in my discussions with people
from industry were turned down, and i have to interact on my own. But it was not all
negative, but some positive aspects of this group dynamics are also there. Group
discussions help in streamlining the thinking of individuals and let elements of
arbitrariness filtered out. Many a times, I also felt, that if made up some opinion for
measuring marketing, but group discussions helped me it reaching for a matured
opinion. While in group discussion, one gets an opportunity to look in to the issue from
different point of view. Group discussions also help in filtering out any possible personal
bias while making up conclusive opinion about the issue in consideration.

LESSONS FOR FUTURE PROJECT


Every activity and all the associations during conduct of this study gave me a lesson
about how to acquire information from various sources and shape up all this
information in the form of knowledge. Few important observations are listed below,
which will definitely help me in future while conducting this type of study in future.
1. While doing this study on measuring marketing, I learnt the advantages being
planned and systematic. I learnt that by being planned, it saves energy and efforts
in doing the same job, what it would have taken without being planned for work.
Right from beginning, if one is aware that initial idea about the issue o be
investigated can be had from internet and then one will proceed on to books and
journals, it will help him a lot. Otherwise, one may get confused by working on
some lines and finding in last that it was not correct to work on these issues.
Besides that one has to start as afresh and keep on adding new material to it.
2. Internet is a very useful source of information on all the topics. May be that
information is not very authentic and correct from academic point of view, but it
gives fairly good idea about any business topic and current trends in that domain
of operation. It helps in framing a roadmap as how to proceed in a particular area
of work. It is true that most of the good research world is available in journals

and specific reports, generated by research houses, copy of which is not available
on internet. But internet helps a lot in a sense that relevant material can be
located as to where it is available and how much it cost. On most of site, abstract
of the material is also listed. It helps a lot in determining relevance of the
material, its availability and cost. Once these are known, researcher can identify
how to proceed in the required direction.
3. Group dynamics has its own advantages and disadvantages. Though, it helps in
developing concepts and defining these, but that comas only at secondary stage.
For getting in concepts and to gather information about it so as to weave the
domain knowledge, one has to work on his own. Process of identifying people
from industry and taking up initiatives so as to facilitate meeting with them, has
to come from individual side only. If this exercise is taken in group, divergent
views come resulting causing confusion among the group members. It works as a
dragging factor, which slows down the whole process. I felt, that it is better if
every group member tries and meet to people from industry to extent it is
possible on his own. In last all group member can come together in discussing
what so ever views they have got from professionals in field. Here after
discussions, all divergent views can be summarised so as to generate
comprehensive picture of the industrial scenario.
4. It is tough to get practical views of industry professionals. It is observed that
industry people prefer to keep their views in closet and not let these be known to
others as they feel it may go against their interest. If we approach people from
industry without ant reference, no body entertains. It only when we approach
somebody in industry with some reference, that they take out time from their
schedule and reveal what so ever views thy have on some particular issue. 5. Time
is a important factor. One has to be cautious as time keep on ticking. Starting
early helps a lot, which help at the end, as one gets enough in last for making
iterative sessions for correcting the concepts and developing the most practical
solutions for the business problems faced.
5. One of the important factors, which influence is the time management. One has
to adhere to the schedule, what so ever planned once. Right at the beginning a
plan needs to be charted out, which clearly sets schedule for every activity which
has to be taken up in coming time. Whole work should be divided in various

modules with specific time slot attached with each one. This way every part of the
study gets right quantum of time and energy. One has not to rush at last,
overlooking the due process and deliberations required in last modules.
Especially the modules of discussions alanysis, discussion and drawing
conclusion are very important in any work and needs sufficient time. Out of these
three modules, drawing conclusions is most important part as it represent the
whole summary of work done and is used by senior management to be
incorporated in their working.

CONCLUSION
This study proved to be very useful in making me learn the process of acquiring
knowledge about contemporary business issues. While conducting this study, I went
through the rigours of searching internet, libraries and journals for gathering
information on desired issues. I found during this whole process that it is internet which
is quickest way to gather information and develop a concept at initial stage, though it
has to kept in mind that information gathered through internet may not be very correct
and authentic. So at initial stage it help a lot in generating a initial picture of the overall
scenario in concerned domain. But as one progresses, help of journals proves to be most
authentic and correct. But it is costly affair if one has to collect whole information on his
own, so institutional support matters. It is also observed that group help in developing
concept gradually through mutual discussions among group members, but not in
gathering information. Discussions also help in streamlining the concepts and view of
individuals. It is also found that generally literature available lacks current
advancements taking place in industry. It is only practicing professionals, who face the
problems and comes out with practical ideas to handle these. So while conducting
studies, a blend of academic investigation and views of practicing professionals is a
must. Another important dimension of study is time factor. It is observed that if
schedule for collecting information and analysing it, study leads to correct conclusions.
Otherwise, generally at the end, data analysis is done in hurry leaving scope for
inaccurate and misleading conclusions. So it can be safely said that being systematic,
planned, clarity of objectives and clear roadmap about work help a lot in making study
rational, logical and credible.