Corporate – Each company operates within different bounds. These are determined by their size, their budget and their ability to make organizational change. Within these bounds marketers operate along the five factors described below.
Competitive – Each company in a category operates within a similar framework as described below. In an ideal world, marketers would have perfect information on how they act as well as how their competitors act. In reality, in many categories have reasonably good information through sources, such as, IRI or Nielsen. In many industries, competitive marketing information is hard to come by.
Customers/Consumers – Understanding and taking advantage of how customers make purchasing decisions can help marketers improve their marketing effectiveness. Groups of consumers act in similar ways leading to the need to segment them. Based on these segments, they make choices based on how they value the attributes of a product and the brand, in return for price paid for the product. Consumers build brand value through information. Information is received through many sources, such as, advertising, word-of-mouth and in the (distribution) channel often characterized with the purchase funnel, a McKinsey & Company concept. Lastly, consumers consume and make purchase decisions in certain ways.
Exogenous Factors – There are many factors outside of our immediate control that can impact the effectiveness of our marketing activities. These can include the weather, interest rates, government regulations and many others. Understanding the impact these factors can have on our consumers can help us to design programs that can take advantage of these factors or mitigate the risk of these factors if they take place in the middle of our marketing campaigns.