Chapter 5 – Managing Marketing Information to Gain Customer Insight
Customer Insight – fresh understanding of customers and the marketplace derived from
marketing information that become the basis for creating customer value and relationships.
Marketing Information System (MIS) consists of people and procedures for:
Assessing the information needs
Developing needed information
Helping decision makers use the information for customers
Assessing Marketing Information Needs
MIS provides information to the company’s marketing and other managers and external
partners such as suppliers, resellers, and marketing service agencies.
A good MIS balances what the information users would like to have against what they need
and what is feasible to offer.
Sometimes the company cannot provide the needed information, either because it is not
available or because of MIS limitations.
The costs of obtaining, analyzing, storing, and delivering information can mount quickly. The
company must decide whether the value of insights gained from additional information is
worth the costs of providing it, and both value and cost are often hard to assess.
Developing Marketing Information
1) Internal Database – information collected from different sources within the company, and
stored within the organization’s information system.
1 o Accounting system
o Operations/productions\sales reporting system
o Sales reporting system
o Past research studies
Internal data is cheap, quick and easy
May not be in a usable form for the decision to be made.
May be incomplete or inappropriate to a particular situation.
2) Marketing Intelligence – the systematic collection and analysis of publicly available
information about consumers, competitors and developments in the marketplace.
Good marketing intelligence can help marketers gain insights into how consumers talk about
and connect with their brands.
Companies need to actively monitor competitors’ activities. Firms use competitive
intelligence to gain early warnings of competitor moves and strategies, new-product
launches, new or changing markets, and potential competitive strengths and weaknesses.
o Competitor intelligence can be collected from people inside the company - executives,
engineers and scientists, purchasing agents, and the sales force.
o Some companies have even rifled their competitors’ garbage.
o Competitors often reveal intelligence information through their annual reports, business
publications, trade show exhibits, press releases, advertisements, and webpages.
o Intelligence can be obtained through any of thousands of online databases.
Facing determined marketing intelligence efforts by competitors, most companies are now
taking steps to protect their own information.
3) Marketing Research - the systematic design, collection, analysis, and reporting of data
relevant to a specific marketing situation.
A multi-step, purpose-driven process:
Measure effectiveness of marketing actions, sales potential, try to understand consumer
Can be done by company personnel or contracted out to outside companies.
2 (I) Defining the Problem and Research Objectives
Defining the problem and research objectives is often the hardest step in the research
Helps to know what you are looking for.
Partnership of manager and researcher.
After the problem has been defined carefully, the manager and researcher must set the
o Exploratory research – marketing research to gather preliminary information that will help
define problems and suggest hypothesis.
o Descriptive research – marketing research to better describe marketing problems, situations,
or markets, such as the market potential for a product or the demographic and attitudes of
o Causal research – marketing research to test hypotheses about cause-and-effect
(II) Developing the Research Plan
Once the research problems and objectives have been defined, researchers must determine
the exact information needed, develop a plan for gathering it efficiently, and present the plan
Written document which outlines the type of problem, objectives, data needed, and the
expected value of the results.
o Secondary data – information collected for another purpose which already exists.
- Government, commercial, and academic sources
- Publications and online databases
Pros: fast, inexpensive.