4: THE IMPORTANCE–PERFORMANCE MATRIX

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4
THE IMPORTANCE–PERFORMANCE MATRIX
The content of this supplementary note links with the following chapters: 4 (page 87), 8 (page 194)
An attribute can be considered as very important by a buyer and not be perceived as present in a particular brand. The problem then is whether to reinforce the attribute's presence in the product or to use better communication to increase awareness and/or conviction about the attribute's presence. To confront importance and performance scores, it is convenient to use a matrix similar to the one presented in Figure Web 4.1 (overleaf), where the attributes of a brand are situated along two dimensions (Martilla and James, 1977). The horizontal axis indicates the importance of the attributes (from low to high) and the vertical axis represents their perceived performance (from low to high). The placement of attributes on this two-dimensional grid suggest the suitable strategy for each. • Strengths are located in the upper-right quadrant. These are the attributes evaluated high both in importance and performance. The brand has a strong image for these criteria, which must be highlighted in the communication. Weaknesses are located in the quadrant just below. These attributes are high in importance but rated low in performance. In this case the firm has to act and make efforts to improve its performance. False sense of security attributes are located in the upper left quadrant. These are the attributes rated high in performance but low in importance. This implies that an overkill has occurred. Perhaps the resources committed to these attributes should be reallocated.

Market-Driven Management: Supplementary web resource material

© Jean-Jacques Lambin, 2007 Published by Palgrave Macmillan

Figure Web 4. performance of the brand on a particular attribute is defined in absolute terms ignoring performance in relation to competitors. however. Second. 2007 Published by Palgrave Macmillan . • The extended 'importance–performance' analysis is designed to rectify these two weaknesses by incorporating a relative performance dimension and a determinance dimension. focusing solely on importance may misguide strategy definition. Determinant attributes are those that discriminate well among competing brands and directly influence buyer choice. Three levels of determinance (high. parity or disadvantage) as shown in the matrix of Figure Web 4. (Competitive advantage. as discussed in Note 3.4: THE IMPORTANCE–PERFORMANCE MATRIX 2 • False strengths are located in the quadrant just below.1 The Importance/Performance Matrix Performance (perceived degree of presence) False sense of security Real strengths Importance (weight) Low-priority weaknesses Real weaknesses Determinance vs relative performance matrix This analysis is useful to identify the components of a brand image and the communication programme to support this image. buyers do not evaluate an object in a competitive vacuum but in comparative terms.2. In reality. Thus. medium low) are combined with three levels of relative performance. which limits its usefulness for identifying the brand’s sustainable competitive advantage. • First. importance scores do not recognise the determinance of an attribute. Thus. They are considered low priority and hence require no additional action. Market-Driven Management: Supplementary web resource material © Jean-Jacques Lambin. This matrix as outlined above has two weaknesses. These attributes are rated low both in importance and performance. relative performance scores should be determined for each attribute by reference to priority competitor(s).

January.4: THE IMPORTANCE–PERFORMANCE MATRIX 3 Figure Web 4. Importance-performance Analysis. (1977). Journal of Marketing.2 Determinance versus Relative Performance Analysis Competitive disadvantage 7 D E T E R M I N A N C E Major weakness Competitive parity Competitive advantage Major strength High 5 Medium 3 Low Minor weakness 1 -3 -1 +1 Minor strength +3 RELATIVE PERFORMANCE Bibliography 1. pp. Martilla J. Market-Driven Management: Supplementary web resource material © Jean-Jacques Lambin.41.A. 2007 Published by Palgrave Macmillan .C. N°1.77-79. and James J. Vol.

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