Editorial Board of “Holistic Marketing Management” (A refereed journal published four times annualy by the School of Management-Marketing of the Romanian-American University) Editor- in-Chief Theodor Valentin PURC!REA Editorial Board Bernd HALLIER John SAEE
John L. STANTON Léon F. WEGNEZ Dana ZADRAZILOVA Riccardo BELTRAMO Sinisa ZARIC Gabriela SAB!U Hélène NIKOLOPOULOU Vasa LÁSZLÓ Peter STARCHON John MURRAY Constantin RO"CA Dumitru MIRON Valeriu IOAN-FRANC Iacob C!TOIU Gheorghe ORZAN Ana-Maria PREDA Ileana PONORAN Ovidiu FOLCU# Doini$a CIOCÎRLAN Marius Dan DALOT! Mihai PAPUC Gheorghe ILIESCU Alexandru IONESCU Olga POTECEA Oana PREDA Nicoleta DUMITRU Monica Paula RA#IU Costel NEGRICEA
Managing Director EuroHandels Institute Retail, Germany; President of EuCVoT ; President of Europe Retail Academy; Member of the Astana Economic Scientists Club Association of Management and International Association of Management, USA; Australian Graduate School of Entrepreneurship, the Faculty of Business and Enterprise, Swinburne University of Technology; Member of France’s National Academy of Scientific Research (CNRS) Chair of Department of Food Marketing, Erivan K. Haub School of Business, Saint Joseph’s University Philadelphia, USA International Association of the Distributive Trade, AIDA Brussels; Member of France’s Academy of Commercial Sciences Dean of Faculty of International Economic Relations, University of Economics, Prague, Czech Republic University of Turin, Italy University of Belgrade, Yugoslavia Memorial University, Grenfell Campus, Corner Brook, Canada University of Lille 3, France Szent Istvan University, Hungary Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia Faculty of Business, Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland President of Romanian Scientific Society of Management- SSMAR Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest National Institute for Economic Research, Romanian Academy; Romanian Marketing Association Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University
Associate Editors Cristina NEAGOE Dan SMEDESCU Art Designer Director Alexandru BEJAN
Editorial: Contributing to reinventing management for the 21st century, by building our holistic story of realizing holistic marketing and developing a position guided by customer insights „It is a holistic story – here is where we would find ourselves playing and how we would see ourselves winning. The only real requirement is that it be a happy, aspirational story. If it isn't happy, it isn't worth being an option in the first place…. When you have assembled the happy stories/options, you can then begin to deploy the most important question in strategy: what would have to be true? ” Roger Martin “It’s time to reinvent management. You can help.” Gary Hamel's Management Innovation eXchange Dear Readers, Welcome to Volume 1, Issue 1, of our “Holistic Marketing Management” scientific Review of Management-Marketing School. Our thoughts are turning to Professor Ion Smedescu , the Founder of the Romanian American University, whose words are still with us: marketing strategy means drift refusal. And in these critical times the market is challenging marketing management like never before. As we know, holistic management represents a process for establishing goals (the basics of holistic management), of making decisions and monitoring, allowing people to ask themselves what it is that they really want from life, holistic thinking allowing thus to consider the whole and the beginning of understanding that anything in life is interconnected. Under these circumstances, we should also take into account the invitation of joining „The Mix Manifesto”, ”Reinventing the Technology of Human Accomplishment”. According to Gary Hamel's Management Innovation eXchange (MIX, an open innovation project aimed at reinventing management for the 21st century), organizations must be adaptable, innovative, inspiring and socially accountable in order to thrive in the 21st century, being necessary to find alternatives to the current bureaucratic and disempowering management practices (www.managementexchange.com/). To go on this way, let’s remember Peter Drucker’s words: “Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes; but no plans.” To set up rigorous plans and carry them out step by step, implies proper understanding of the manager’s personal development in the context of the interaction between the managerial culture, the workplace culture and the surrounding culture (along with an accelerated evolution related to the continuous pressure to develop strategies and embrace management practices able to ensure organizational effectiveness). We have to consider the importance of the quality of team relations, as well as the quality of the network in initiating partnerships, along with establishing a fluid and flexible process for planning sequential stages, of a supportive organizational culture, developing a high research potential via learning experiences based on projects and workshops conducted by excellent managers who aim high but at the same time pay a lot of attention to details. In february 2010, Kristin Zhivago underlined that one of the most dangerous myths in business is to consider that you are smarter than your customers, because CEOs only hear about their customers from salespeople and not spend personal time with customers. Two years before, Kevin J. Clancy and Peter C. Krieg (Tangible Marketing: Influencing Customer Choice, January 31, 2008), argued that the key to moving customers toward your brand is to develop a position guided by their insights, and avoiding to become „just another indistinguishable drop in a sea of choices”. In June of the same year, 2008, Seth Godin pointed out that „all customers are smarter than average”. While in January 2010, Jessica Tsai (Are You Smarter Than a Neuromarketer, www.destinationcrm.com/Articles/Columns-Departments/Insight/) has quoted Martin Lindstrom (author of „Buy•ology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy”, Broaway Books, Random House, Holistic Marketing Management
Inc., New York, 2008, 2010) which showed that eighty-five percent of decisions are made in the nonconscious part of the brain and that neuroscience (which is reaching consumers where the action is, the brain; it’s intent is to identify the relevant drivers and appeal to those areas) and marketing need to come together and hold hands in order to achieve anything productive. According to marketing educator Larry J. Rosenberg “Holistic marketing. A new way of looking at getting & keeping customers”,(http://www.communicationmiracles.com/5C%20Holistic%20Marketing.pdf),holistic marketing presupposes to utilize the body, mind and spirit of both the marketer and customer to bring them into a lasting marketing relationship for greater marketing success. That means to harmonize „Energy Zones” (body, mind and spirit – B-M-S) with „Energy Systems” (Marketer/personal-impersonal spectrum of the marketer: Face-to-face, Phone, Email, Brochure, Website, Magazine, Radio, Television; Customer), so as marketing success follows when the Marketer-Customer energy systems become integrated/One. In other words, realizing holistic marketing, argues Rosenberg, means improve the body’s capability, expand the mind’s creativity, engage the spirit’s power, ask the brain any question and combine them for marketing to get and keep customers. As we already argued with other occasion, the customer becomes more and more competent, wishes real-time solutions, and in order for his needs to be well understood quality information is needed to suit the specific context, considering uncertainty, but adequately managing the probability to capitalize on the opportunity to satisfy him and transforming him in a team member, team which offers the customer the desired solutions or even those he did not think about but he accepts instantly once they are offered by the business supply mechanism which exists precisely to serve the customer. If we accept the bussines challenge, that means to decide adequately which markets to target (marketing strategy), which involves a clear relationship to strategy, tacking into account the company’s organizational competencies, both marketing (markets to enter, optimizing in chosen market; proper criteria) and strategy (acquiring, using/combining; proper criteria), and then choosing the adequate design (resources suited to the task; coordination, difficult both, at large firms and between firms; incentives, including relationship between incentives and coordination) and management of marketing channels (contracts used to align objectives, co-location, standardization, exclusivity). When Peter F. Drucker approached on April 6, 1965 “Physical Distribution: The Frontier of Modern Management” (mentioned by Donald J. Bowersox in “SCM: The past is prologue, From the Quarter 2 2007 issue”) he defined it as simply another way of saying “the whole process of business”, stating that: “It is the one area where managerial results of great magnitude can be achieved.” Today, indeed, confirming Professor Drucker’s words, supply chain management is changing the rules of competition and is considered as being essential for the business integration. Supply chains have become increasingly complex and time-sensitive, the economic success of the company being intertwined with the actions of its suppliers and applying value chain principles creating customer value and competitive advantage thanks to an adequate combination of a superior supply chain, committed customers and loyal consumers. There are consistent challenges such as quickly understanding the impact of the rapid changes and optimizing the response to these changes, while fighting both against the bullwhip effect caused by increasing demand uncertainty and for supporting product innovation, demand management, supply management and response management. In these critical times there is a real need: to become more demand-driven; to make fundamental changes in the way of thinking about the supply networks; to treat supply chain thinking as a philosophy that pervades the entire company. Being at the heart of a successful strategy, an innovative story process engages the imagination of people connected to the strategy by storytelling, bridging the gap of the timeline and the urgency and allowing to envision new possibilities, encouraging emergence, conveying the message across to multiple levels in the organization, exploring marketing resource management solutions and transforming marketing management in a profit center. Looking forward to your suggestions and submissions for publication in our “Holistic Marketing Management” scientific Review of Management-Marketing School, contributing to smart food for thought and making a holistic story to come to life. Theodor Valentin Purc!rea Editor-in-Chief
An interview with Professor James McCollum, an outstanding promoter of international educational cooperation
Professor Ana-Maria PREDA, Ph. D. Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest
Motto: “God is my co-pilot” Professor James K. McCollum is an outstanding promoter of international educational cooperation. He is is author of “Romania. Opening All of the Doors. A travelogue of the Transition” (published by McTara Publishing Company in Association with Trafford Publishing, printed in Canada, 2003), dedicated to his “ life partner, Barbara”. James K. McCollum, Alabama University in Huntsville, USA, and Ana-Maria Preda, Romanian-American University have written a wonderful book of Applied Business Management, inviting students to develop skills by interacting with real-life business applications, by learning to design and implement action plans to address management challenges. The main objective of the book was to help students in identifying the strategic business opportunities, as well as in learning to recognize and capitalize on them, in learning to separate business requirements and analysis and to couple training with new experiences. Question 1. You seem to have had a very satisfying career in academia. How do you account for your success? Answer: I mainly focused on research and writing. I have seen many talented professors that neglected this aspect of an academic career that failed to get promotion and tenure. High quality teaching is also required, but in American universities, it must be accompanied by a solid base of research and publication of journal articles. Question 2. Has your success been easily attained? Answer: No. I look back on my life from my advanced age and remember many struggles I have had to get to where I am now. Where I am is very satisfying to me, but it’s not a life of riches and luxury. I am in a second career. My original career was in the U.S. Army and I was fortunate enough to stay in the Army for 20 years which is the lowest threshold for an army retirement. The retirement gave me a base to go into academia which I have found to be richly rewarding in “psychic” income, but not giving me availability to live in a mansion or to drive a Cadillac or Mercedes. I probably could have these things, but I would feel inwardly that I have just squandered money on status symbols that do not give me peace of mind and soul. Question 3. You say you have struggled, but from what we know, you graduated from West Point, the most prestigious military academy in the world, became an Army Officer, and spent two years in Vietnam. Weren’t these achievements satisfying to you? Answer: Yes and no. After high school, I went to the University of Missouri for a year with my parents struggling to pay for my schooling. At that point, I decided to enter the Army to get some Korean War “GI Bill” benefits for future schooling. I entered as a Private and while on a ship for a tour of duty in Germany, I met a young soldier, Charles McLendon, who had just been terminated from the Officer Candidate School (OCS) at Ft.
Benning, Georgia. I told him I would like to become an army officer. He argued against applying for OCS, but rather to get an appointment to West Point through the Army. I had never heard of such a program for getting into West Point, nor had my new commanding officer in Germany when I said I’d like to go to West Point through the army. The commander, a Lieutenant Colonel, said he would look into it for me. Sure enough, a few weeks later, he sent me to his Personnel Officer who had done the research and said he was sending me to a testing center at another army base to see if I could qualify for the appointment. Everything worked out for me to be sent to the army’s preparatory school at Stewart Air Force Base, Newburgh, New York. I went there for a year and was one of the 30 out of 150 who passed all of the requirements and was able to enter West Point in 1956. Looking back, I see the Hand of God in having me meet Charles McLendon, getting support from my commander. Question 4. Weren’t you were on your way to success at that point? Answer: Partly. At the end of my first year which is the most rigorous and trying, we went for summer training. I injured my left knee in the field training and thought my army career was over. After recovery from a primitive (by today’s standards) operation, I was able function, but never as effectively as before and was able to complete the four years and get commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Field Artillery. I even went through Airborne training to become a parachutist and spend four years in Airborne assignments and became a Master Parachutist. But much of it was done mainly on one leg. I spent the two assignments in Vietnam in interesting positions, first, in 1965-66 as the Battery Commander of a 175mm Gun Battery and second from January to December of 1970 as the Operations Advisor to the Army of Vietnam Airborne Division. Question 5. What about your private life? We understand you just celebrated your 50th Wedding Anniversary. Answer: Again, I give God the credit for bringing me to the love of my life. I don’t want to bore you, but I think you’ll better understand why I give God so much credit. The day was March 17, 1956, the day we finished taking the West Point Entrance exam. I went to downtown Newburgh, NY to have dinner with a prep school friend, George Hunter. As we walked through the snow on the way to restaurant, a car driven by Rod Mclain, another prep schooler, stopped and Rod asked if one of us want to go to New Platz, a nearby college town. I urged George to go, but he said he was tired and didn’t want to go. I went with the others and that night, met Barbara, my life partner. She comforted me through the rigors of West Point and we got married on graduation day, June 8, 1960 Question 6. You also have children, do you not? Answer: Yes, we have four children: Deanna is a nurse, Jennifer is an elementary school teacher. James jr. is a Major in the Army, and Michael, is a home builder. From them, we have 12 grandchildren. Question 7. How did you get into academia after the army? Answer: I retired from the army at age 39. Many retired army officers go into defense related businesses and have very lucrative second careers, but I had no desire for that line of work. While still in the army, I had gotten masters degrees in political science and in public administration. I had two assignments as an instructor in army schools, so I definitely wanted to get a Ph.D. and teach in a university. Just before I retired from the army I met a Colonel in the Army Reserve who was also the Dean of the College of
Business at Virginia Polytechnic and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia. He invited me to enroll in the Ph.D. program at his university. It was a wonderful connection and five years after retirement from the army, I was a Ph.D. in Business Management. Again, God was my co-pilot and guided my career into a satisfying life of college teaching, research, and publication. At first, I was at Auburn University, then at The University of Alabama at Huntsville, both of which are “publish or perish” institutions. I’m still around, so I didn’t perish. Question 8. How did you come to Romania? Answer: It was, in my opinion, a result of my successful publishing that allowed me to get two Fulbright Scholarships (1991-92 and 2003-05) and a Fulbright Senior Specialist award to Romania. Barbara and I came to Romania together for the first two Fulbrights. I also was brought to the Lucian Blaga University in Sibiu in 1996 as a Visiting Professor. After the first Fulbright, I got grants from the U.S. Information Agency to bring 53 Romanian middle managers to Huntsville to work in our local companies as interns to learn about free market management. These grants required that I come to Romania to select the managers to participate in the program. Subsequent to the Intern program, we had three reunions with the interns, 1997, 2000, and 2002, and found that the interns’’ careers were going very well. Question 9. How did you become affiliated with RAU? Answer: That connection began during the first Fulbright. Dr. Smedescu asked someone at the U.S. Embassy if I could come and give some lectures at his one year old university. I was happy to comply and gave my first RAU lecture about March of 1992. I didn’t have any direct connections with RAU until 2004 when I was teaching for ASE and a reporter for Economistul interviewed me. The interviewer knew that my wife and I had taught classes at the American University in Bulgaria (AUBG) at Blagoevgrad. The interviewer asked why Romania didn’t have an American University. I answered that there is an American university here, but it is not as well developed as AUBG. Dr. Smedescu saw the interview, contacted me, and sent a car to take me to his new campus. I was bowled over to see the fine buildings he had created for RAU. When I met him, he wanted to know why I had said RAU didn’t have good facilities. I could only say I didn’t know what wonders had occurred since 1992 for his university. Then, without rancor, he said, “I want you to come and teach for me.” Again, I was happy to comply and in the autumn of 2004, I came to RAU to teach a short course and have been coming back to teach courses in winter and fall to teach short courses and to bring students from my university for summer study abroad courses. The summer courses began in 2005 I had recruited 2 students for the Black Sea University (BSU) and when BSU couldn’t offer a meaningful program, Dr. Preda, (then Decan Preda) offered to begin a summer program and recruited ten RAU students to go along with my two American students to begin a Summer Study Abroad program that continues to this day. So far, we have had 48 American students and 35 RAU students in this program. All of the American students and (I think) all of the Romanian students have been wildly enthusiastic about this program that is mainly taught by RAU professors and includes cultural activities which include tours in Bucharest and Transilvania every year and trips to the Black Sea as either optional or part of the main program. Question 10. We understand you have written some books since coming to Romania for the first time. Is that true?
Answer: I’m happy to say that it is. I had written a lot of journal articles and meeting papers before I came to Romania, but I had always desired to write some books. The opportunity seemed to demand that I take some action since I didn’t see any management books that I thought were the best for teaching free market management when I was in Romania the first time, so I began a book I called American Ideas for Romanian Managers, written in English, but thus not very practical for teaching Romanian students in that form. God blessed me again with the help of my most used translator when I gave lectures to Romanian managers, Mrs. Doina Virginia Vladuca. She offered to translate the book for me into Romanian, so in December, 1993, I made a special trip to Bucharest to get the book translated into Romanian. Mrs. Vladuca did a fine job of translating the book and I used it the next summer at the Black Sea University and gave copies to all of my interns who came to the U.S. At Mrs. Vladuca’s suggestion, I wrote another book named Is Communism Dead forever? using Mrs. Vladuca’s life under communism as a case study/centerpiece. That book has been used mainly in preparing American students for coming to Romania. It has found a place on the shelves of many libraries in America also. Using many of my diary note of my travels in Romania, I wrote a book entitled, Romania Opening All of the Doors, that was published in 2003. In 2004, while I was teaching for ASE, I added a few cases and had a 2d edition of Idei Americane pentru Manageri Romani published by Editura ASE. Most recently. Dr. Ana-Maria Preda and I revised the book and added more cases, and we renamed the book, Applied Business Management and it was published, in English, by Editura Universitara. I’ve been able to use the new book in classes at RAU this year. Earlier, I had found another partner, Cristian Silviu Banacu, who taught Project Management among other subjects at ASE, and we coauthored a book, Project Management: A Practical Approach, also published by Editura Universitara, which has been used at the Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest and at Romanian-American University. Both of the latter books rely heavily on the use of cases and the Romanian students like this approach very much. Question 11: Coming back to WestPoint Academy, do you think that WestPoint Academy and the years you’ve spent serving in the US Army helped you in your future business career, and especially as a Project Manager? Answer: I did get a lot of project management experience while I was in the army and again in my intern program and smaller projects in academia. Question 12: Coming back to Project “Romania”, despite the global economic crisis, which paradoxical gathers together the whole Planet, you are back in Romania and this confirms that we are present at a Cultural Management. Can you tell us about your involvement in this process (through your books, and not only)? Answer: We try to keep our cultural programs going despite the financial crisis. So far, we have been able to attract some students, though not as many, to the study abroad program and hope we can be successful next year.
On the 24th January 2011, the Senate of Romanian Scientific Management Society (SSMAR) has awarded the prestigious title of Honorary Member to Professor Bernd HALLIER. The President of SSMAR, Professor Constantin RO"CA, allowed us to present the Laudatio made by the President of the Scientific Council of SSMAR, Professor Gheorghe ZAMAN. Professor Bernd HALLIER received the Diploma of Honorary Member of SSMAR - on behalf of the President of SSMAR, Professor Constantin RO"CA - from Professor Theodor Valentin PURC#REA, the Vice President of the Scientific Council of SSMAR, on the occasion of the Honorary Member Award Ceremony which took place Friday, February 25, in Cologne at EHI Retail Institute during this year first working meeting of European Retail Academy - ERA (ERA met for its Annual Meeting 2011 at the EHI Retail Institute, Cologne, GS1 Germany and the world leading exhibition for retail technology EuroShop, Dusseldorf)
LAUDATIO To Professor BERND HALLIER, PhD on the occasion of the Honorary Member Award Ceremony
Friday, February 25, 2011 Dear Professor Hallier, Dear Professor Stanton, Dear Professor Zadrazilova, Dear Professor Zaric, Dear Professor Kiselev, Dear Professor László, Dear Professor Starchon, Dear Professor Pícha, Dear Professor Murray, Dear Colleagues, Distinguished Guests, It is a privilege for me to read the Laudatio for a distinguished personality proving a real passion for transparency of the market and trends discovery, for promotion of the benchmarking in retail education and for one of the most internationalized markets, the Art market. The Senate of Romanian Scientific Management Society (SSMAR) decided unanimously to award the title of Honorary Member to Professor Bernd Hallier for his outstanding contribution to the promotion of the international transfer of know-how between business and universities. Professor Bernd Halier,PhD, is Managing Director EHI Retail Institute (former EuroHandelsinstitut ), President of EuCVoT (European Competence Center for Vocational Training for Retail), and President of the European Retail Academy (ERA), Chairman of the Advisory Board of EuroShop (world's largest capital goods show in the retail sector), Member of the Board of AIDA Brussels, and Member of the Astana Economic Scientists Club. It is worth to mention that, at the very beginning of January 2011, Professor Bernd Hallier was a special guest of „Voice of Russia” Radio (ranked third in popularity after
BBC and the Voice of America, according to a survey carried out by International Media Help, Switzerland), being introduced as being „currently the President of the European Academy of Retail”, „actively involved in developing cooperation between the West Germany and Eastern markets”, and speaking (inter alia) about „how Germany has survived the economic crisis and what are the prospects of the unified Germany in the global system of relations” (http://english.ruvr.ru/radio_broadcast/25298789/38309891/index.html). Professor Bernd Hallier is the “designer” of the European Retail Academy (Romanian Distribution Committee has awarded Professor Bernd Hallier in 2006 the title of “Designer of the Year”), a virtual platform that brings more transparency about retailresearch and retail-education and promotes the international transfer of know-how between business and universities. European Retail Academy is the home of the European Competence Center for Vocational Training (for Retail) and its partners. Initiators besides ERA are EuCoCo and EUREMA - both EU-programs for e-learning and organizers of retail-events like ASPERO Kompetens/Sweden, Blue Events/CZ, Dublin Institute of Technology/Ireland and PROFAT/Lithuania. Professor Bernd Hallier has received numerous awards and diplomas in Germany, as well as abroad (including „Honoris Causa”). He had significant participations abroad as a distinguished keynote speaker, at Congresses and International Scientific Symposia. He was personally and successfully involved in the recently (November 2010) three EUHearings of the Social Dialogue project “Establishing a European Network for Anticipating skill needs in the commerce sector”( project implemented with the financial support of the European Commission; EuroCommerce, and Uni-Europa Commerce, supported by European Retail Academy) aimed: to gather experiences/observations of all parties involved in this sector; to create awareness concerning the changes in vocational training within the next 10 to 20 years; to scout for “Round Tables” for the sector’s education/image; to optimize national and international skills for this sector; to build networks and links across the borders in the first step within the EU but also in the second step to cooperate worldwide; to provide the Social Partners, the national government and of course the EU-bodies with information on the policy-level. Since 1985, Dr. Hallier is Managing Director of EHI Retail Institute based in Köln, Germany (responsible especially for the business units ORGAINVENT, FOODPLUS and ERA). EHI Retail Institute is a well-known scientific institute of the retail industry, having 550 members (including international retail companies and their industry associations, manufacturers of consumer and capital goods, and various service providers), and is Partner to Messe Düsseldorf in staging the world’s biggest capital goods trade fair for the retail business, EuroShop. EHI Retail Institute has well-known challenging publications: „Marketing Monitor“ (assessing the consequences of the financial and economic crisis; detecting marketing trends and facing the challenges in the coming years; particularly important demands on the media and how will retail fashion its future media mix); „rt-retail technology“ (magazine for information technology and logistics in retailing, informing about: the latest IT trends in retailing; user reports from current IT projects in Europe; investment trends in IT, security technology and logistics; new, target-grouprelevant products and IT solutions; first publication of EHI studies), official journal (reporting regularly on new things going on in connection with Europe’s biggest IT show for retailers) of the annual trade show EuroCIS; „stores+shops“, (magazine for store design, fixturing and POP marketing, informing regularly about: international trends and developments in furnishing and fixturing, design and marketing; new store concepts, openings and reopenings; investment trends in new construction and store enlargement;
important industry events), being first publication of EHI research projects; „PR in Retail “ (taking into account that the revolution in communication calls for changed strategies and investigating among other things just how well retail is prepared for the changes, also considering the fact that Sustainability is and remains an outstanding topic and examining consequently the importance it has for retail communication, the measures that are taken, and the contents which are communicated); „Energy Monitor “ (efficient energy management continues to be a top priority in retail, particularly because energy efficiency, in the sense of responsible behaviour towards the environment and society, can contribute significantly to the competitiveness of individual businesses; the survey is complemented by a comprehensive overview of the energy costs and consumption in the different branches of the retail industry, the energy management measurements taken, the key figures and priorities concerning investments, as well as the procurement of energy); „POS Systems 2010“ (the checkout systems have to meet today’s high expectations, and have to be adaptable to future demands, being imperative to consider their high significance and strategic importance). Bernd Hallier, born on the 28th of July 1947 in Hamburg/Germany, studied at Hamburg University and graduated with a MA-degree in Economics. His PhD-thesis was focused on the response to high-tech-innovation in wholesale/retail versus the relationship between trade and consumer-products industry, and could be seen as a first ECR-project already applied between 1979 and 1982. His publications cover topics of macro-economics as well as micro-economics especially in trade, but he also covers the intertwine between commerce and culture. His book “Culture and History of Commerce” is published in the German, Korean, and Russian language. The Chinese version is under preparation. His book “EuroShop” (German/English) became an international standard for shopfitting and was translated into Russian with the title „Modern stores. A history of technical development”. Dr. Hallier was for the first time in Romania, in Bucharest, in May 1998 on the occasion of the 24th International Congress of AIDA Brussels organized by the Romanian Distribution Committee, and recently on the occasion of the the 17th IGWT Symposium, “Facing the Challenges of the Future: Excellence in Business and Commodity Science” organized by the Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest, Faculty of Commerce. He is Member of the Editorial Board of the Romanian Distribution Committee Magazine, and one of his very interesting letters have been referred to in the “Marketing – Management” Review no. 5/1998 of the Romanian Marketing Association - AROMAR. Launching the so-called „Evolution Tornado Retail”, Professor Hallier argued (inter alia) that: less seen by the consumers but more by the experts and some dedicated academics is the change of the backstage in retail; no attention at all was paid to the evaluation of philosophies offered by the steady upgrade of retail-technologies; consumers can gain much more impact onto the listing of products, onto services within a store (it might be the time when the outlets become a “point of consumers”- POC - again). The underlined real passion proved by Professor Bernd Hallier is confirming the link between the significance of three German quotes: “What is my life if I am not longer useful to others” (Goethe); “Nothing great in the world has ever been accomplished without passion” (Hebel); “What is not started today is never finished tomorrow” (Goethe).
Professor Gheorghe ZAMAN, PhD President of the Scientific Council of SSMAR Associate Member of the Romanian Academy
MARKET-ORIENTATION AND INNOVATION IN SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES Professor Marius-Dan DALOT!, Ph.D. Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest email@example.com
Abstract: If managers of many SME do not clearly assume the necessity to modernize their organizations, they will not be able to take advantage of all its resources' potentialities, not only the technological resources, but also of the capacities and qualifications of the human resources. This article looks at how new technologies and their inherent risks have to be considered to achieve performance, to enhance productivity, and to strengthen competitiveness. The solution demands the understanding of the capacities of technologies, the possibility of exploring their benefits and the effort of acquiring an improving the management performance. Keywords: Innovation management, Change management, SMEâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s growth, Performance management 1.
Introduction A major issue for all SMEs is how to survive by maintaining or increasing market share through innovation. The relative advantages or disadvantages to a manufacturing company of focusing on single or tightly-related portfolio of products or, of diversifying is well known. For small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), there is often little choice. Many will have entered the market as single product or technology-led companies without the finance to broaden their product range even if this were considered strategically desirable. This paper explores the characteristics of innovative SMMEs. The comprehension of new technologies and all its potential abilities can actually become a source of weakness, because managers cannot use them against competitors or to profit from the opportunities that these technologies can offer . The solution of this situation demands that one understand the capacities of these technologies, their adequacy to each business, the possibility of exploring their benefits and the effort of acquiring a new management mentality. At the same time, it is vital to understand how the new technologies are closely linked to the information systems and how their security guarantees business continuity. Sustainable growth and profitability require technological innovation and attentive control perspectives. Innovation through new products and technologies has a tremendous impact on organizationsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; growth. Growth plans rely on more than new products. They include innovation management and adequate management mentalities to adopt new technologies within several processes .
Factors contributing to SME’s innovation The conceptual relationship between entrepreneurship and innovation is related on factors affecting their development : • Innovation and entrepreneurship are complementary because innovation is the source of entrepreneurship and entrepreneurship allows innovation to flourish and helps to realize its economic value. • Entrepreneurship uses innovation to expand business scope and boost growth. Therefore, entrepreneurship and innovation are dynamic and holistic processes that are not confined to the initial stage of a new venture. • The development of entrepreneurship and innovation, and interaction between them for the successful commercialization of innovation, require an organizational culture and a management style that are innovationfocused and supportive. Organisations engaged in entrepreneurship and innovation face implementation problems that are as follows: • As a result of some technological innovations, SMEs are restructured, and this has led to a significant loss of jobs, lower staff morale, and problems caused by understaffing. • Recruitment of staff and good people management are key issues facing innovative and entrepreneurial organisations. It is difficult to acquire people who are able to bring “new blood, new ideas, new thinking and new horizons to the organisation”. And retaining them is even more difficult. • Managers do not like to lose control and they can feel “a bit of a threat if someone become too creative”, and this can hinder the development of innovation. • Time, persistence, and risk taking are required to get a new product accepted by markets. • The systems of innovation and entrepreneurship are very informal in many SMEs. • Funding can be a problem. It is very hard for a small company to be innovative in product development because it is hard to find the funds required to promote that product. • It the most situations is impossible to measure the outcomes of SMEs innovation and entrepreneurship because it is very difficult to separate them from the overall business of organisations. Regarding process innovation, current literature suggested innovation was part of a long-term organisational evolution, customer relationships were important to long-term sourcing both financial and knowledge terms, and human resources . Past literature identified several aspects of what was considered as critical success factors for innovative strategy in SMEs and effective strategic formulation in successful small hi-tech firms development, promoting a corporate culture, creating structure reflecting in the effective use of systems and technology and investors in people (currently known as process innovation), analysing competitors, developing co-operations and partnerships. We should add other important factors like flexibility, short communication lines, close relations with customers, motivation of management and labour force, less bureaucracy, little filtering of proposals with strong interest in product development and technological change as part of
the characteristics and strengths of an innovative culture. Focussing on new product development suggest that product innovation activities are the cornerstone of better-performed companies. Manufacturing SMEs by repeatedly introducing innovative new products opens up new market niches, which is essential to their survival. Innovation literature also places great importance on company learning, benchmarking, training and networking. Size, age and flatter hierarchies were found in literature to have effects on company innovativeness. Company culture and ways of working is consistent with literature which suggests SMEs’ main impetus for innovation came from board level, with a spread of participation. A good level of training is found in more innovative companies. 3.
Dimensions of SMEs growth through innovation Three main sources of growth can be determined : a) Technological improvement – It is well known that processes and technology improvements can contribute to meeting quality and process - performance objectives. b) An increase in the quantity of capital – Very often, technology is deeply linked to investment because it is embodied in new machinery and better equipment. c) An increase in the number of workers, their skills and educational levels. Industry growth depends on several internal and external factors, such as physical assets, technologies all along the chain value, human resources in general and qualification levels in particular and also organizational capabilities. In general, the firms are more likely to reap profits and social benefits when they are in high-growth industries. SMEs can increase their activities and businesses in some ways and grow in some dimensions. The following dimensions can be identified: a) Raise the level of integration of the technologies – The management of technologies and the exploitation of all their potential is strictly linked to the possibility of integrate their synergies. b) Intensify innovative technology processes – This direction of innovation is a decisive contribution for the modernization of businesses and the implementation of competitive strategies. c) Increase the number of markets where the company operates – Internationalization and globalization are direct consequences of this decision. d) Increase businesses’ portfolios – The company that today is involved in a given industry can tomorrow widen its investment to other industries; e) Increase the number of operational uses of technologies – Many technologies can have applications in operations of a different nature. To position strongly for future growth in the global marketplace, an organization has to make some effort to increase its investments in R&D and to focus on the implementation of advanced production innovations and practices. The growth of an organization, the technologies that are being used along all its activities, and business strategies that have been formulated are strictly related. Even organizational culture deals with technologies and growth. Technological progress driven by a decision to enhance productivity and profitability often fosters growth. The competitive success of most enterprises is strongly related to decisions such as: • producing products and services according to high quality standards; • quantifying production in the correct manner;
• anticipating and responding to changing consumer needs; • reducing production costs in order to enhance profitability. The success of SMEs depends on: • using advanced technologies in an integrated manner, • being aware of changing clients’s needs, producing quality goods and services, • enhancing profits by reducing costs, • reaching new markets within a competitive perspective, • wide-open mentality. The growth effort has to include: • New technologies for manufacturing with ecological safety. • Designing and modelling of secure facilities. • Adopting zero-waste procedures in manufacturing and processing. • Upgrading of existing installations. • Developing new organizational tools and methodologies. • Reducing resource consumption in order to reach competitive production costs. Many SME’s are not able to envisage growth as a competitive need and this difficult mentality and/or reluctance should be understood. The identification of innovative improvements that could enhance organizations’ movements for growth is a decisive process to reach growth objectives. Innovation in production, distribution, and communication processes serve as a vital source of productivity growth and other competitive advantages. The success of most management innovation processes is also a function of competitive efforts. The managerial decision regarding obtaining growth results has to take into account what is needed to reach a rapid modification in the professional qualification levels of workers and managers. It is indispensable that a strict and dedicated cooperation exists among governmental entities, industries and educational sectors. When an entrepreneur does not have experience and technical knowledge in the financial domain he may have a distorted perception of the reality, because an increase in sales does not necessarily correspond to an increase in profitability and, therefore, does not open the possibility of self-financing. It is well known that some entrepreneurs prefer self-financing because it provides them with more control. It is required to create new higher education models in the domain of entrepreneurship. We agree that a new higher education models will require the commitment of governments, universities, and associations. 4.
Market-orientation, learning-orientation and continuous improvements in SMS’s innovation There exists both empirical and theoretical studies investigating the linear or causal relationships among the market-orientation, learning-orientation, innovativeness, and, thereby, their combined impact on firm performance. Most of the empirical studies focused on the large-scale organizations in western/developed countries, while ignoring the SMEs in general and SMEs in developing countries in particular. Specifically, studying the SMEs in developing countries contributes to the literature for three reasons: • The majority of the market-orientation and learning-orientation studies were conducted in developed western countries, e.g. USA, UK, using the
measure scales of Narver and Slater (1990), Kohli et al. (1993), Ruekert (1992), Calantone etal. (2002), and others. However, replication of the market-orientation, learning-orientation, and innovativeness studies is warranted, because if these constructs are reliable and valid, they should also be applicable in different environments and economies, such as Turkey. • Market- and learning-orientation studies mostly investigated large firms having 250 or more employees. However, the applicability of marketorientation, learning-orientation, and innovativeness measures, and their research models, which were developed for large-scale firms, may have different meanings in a SME context. For instance, SMEs face particular problems in the formulation of their innovation strategies due to: their deficiencies arising from their limited resources and range of technological competencies; influence of their owners/managers on the decision-making; dependence on small numbers of customers and suppliers; focus on the efficiency of current operations. • Empirical studies on market-orientation, learning-orientation, and innovativeness in SMEs are fragmented or incomplete. For instance, studies exist that investigate relationships between: market-orientation and overall firm performance; export performance and financial performance; learning-orientation and firm growth and innovativeness and firm performance; firm’s innovativeness and performance. Yet there remains a gap in empirical research investigating the relations among the market-orientation, learning-orientation, firm innovativeness, and firm performance as an integrated model in SMEs. The term "market-orientation" found a broad appeal in the marketing literature. The literature describes market-orientation as a set of behaviors and processes, or an aspect of culture to create a superior customer value. By using a cultural framework, the boundary of the market-orientation concept is extended by incorporating the development of information about competitors, and interfunctional collaboration. The cultural framework of marketing, adopting a strategic view, identified three components of marketorientation: a) obtaining and using customer information; b) developing a strategic plan based on such information; c) implementing the plan to respond to customer needs. Market-orientation is a cognitive, behavioral, and cultural aspect of a firm's marketing concept that puts the customer at the center of the organization and its development. Empirical studies on the effect of market-orientation on superior performance revealed inconsistent results for a model of market-orientation, learningorientation, innovativeness, and firm performance in an SME context. A market-oriented firm, which has excellent market information gathering and processing abilities, is able to predict the requirements and changes in markets accurately and quickly, allowing them to respond quickly and appropriately. Thereby, they enhance their competitive advantage. In this regard, it has been asserted in the SME literature that market-orientation provides small firms with a potential competitive advantage over large
firms, because SMEs: 足 are closer to customers and able to exploit their needs and wants quickly and more flexibly; 足 are able to transfer customer intelligence quickly, with less deterioration, due to their reduced organizational layers and bureaucracy; 足 can implement the marketing plan fast, because it is less formal. Considering that SMEs may lack a long-range focus and strategic orientation that their customer orientation in general and market-orientation in particular are critical determinants of performance and consistent with SME literature, it is hypothesized that: A.- Market-Orientation will positively lead to firm performance in SMEs. Another well-known factor that impacts firm performance is firm innovativeness. The positive role of firm innovativeness on firm performance has been supported by many theoretical and empirical studies of new product developments, technology adoption and diffusion, process improvement, and innovation. Of particular importance to an SME's innovativeness is the reflection of the environmental uncertainty and the lack of technology competencies for new product development, cost effectiveness, operational efficiency, emerging market niches, and process innovation. The studies note that SMEs should be innovative to get a competitive advantage due to their limited resources, vulnerability to uncertainty, turbulence in business environments, and the extensive powers of customers and suppliers. SMEs that follow a proactive business strategy foster innovativeness as a central part of corporate culture. SMEs can achieve leadership positions by applying aggressive innovation strategies in niche industries. High-tech SMEs, e.g. electronics, software, and biotechnology, for instance, demonstrate improved performance by generating new markets and industries due to their innovativeness. Because innovativeness has long been associated with entrepreneurial behavior, and theoretically linked to a high tolerance for ambiguity, taking risk, and evaluating uncertain situations more favorably, it is therefore hypothesized that: B.- Firm innovativeness will positively lead to firm performance in SMEs. Noting the importance of innovativeness for firm performance, it is also important to mention the mechanisms that promote the firm innovativeness in order to investigate the relations in a holistic way. According to recent studies, learning orientation influences firm innovativeness in three ways: 1.- since learning occurs through organizational observation and interaction with their environments, it is more likely to be committed to innovation; 2.- since learning organizations are linked with their environment, it has the knowledge and ability to understand and anticipate customer needs and emerging markets; and 3.- since organizations closely monitor the competitors' actions in the market, their strengths and weaknesses, and successes and failures, that environmental scanning contributes to firm innovativeness. A lot of the theory on learning-orientation and firm innovativeness is based on empirical studies completed on large-based firms rather than SMEs. In this sense, there is a gap in the empirical investigation of learning-orientation and firm innovativeness in SME literature. Organizational learning studies in SMEs note that learning in small firms is context sensitive, firm-specific, and work-based, which is, by nature, reactive and produces operational efficiency in the short-run - indicating adaptive rather than
innovative behavior. Exploitation of each bit of information and then utilizing such information in the workplace to advance new operational practices, in essence, develops new schemata or thinking ways, and knowledge for employees. The people become more adaptive to different views, procedures, and ideas, and become proactive to enhance the quality of workplace and the operations of firms and customer satisfaction. Therefore, it is hypothesized that: C.- Learning-Orientation will positively lead to firm innovativeness in SMEs. Even though market-orientation and learning-orientation are antecedents of innovation, the effect of market-orientation on firm innovativeness is mediated by learning-orientation. The market-orientation fosters a knowledge-producing behavior providing a source of ideas for change and improvement by market information processing and marketing strategies. The knowledge generated by market-orientation has little benefit if not appreciated and implemented for firm innovation. D.- Market-Orientation will positively lead to firm innovativeness via Learning-Orientation (Learning-Orientation will mediate the relationship between Market-Orientation and firm innovativeness) in SMEs. Even if there is a common agreement about the relationship among learningorientation, market-orientation, and innovativeness, there is no clear agreement about the direction of the relationship between learning-orientation and market-orientation. The studies promoting the relationship of learning-orientation â&#x20AC;&#x201D; market-orientation, essentially investigated the market information processing rather than market-orientation. In fact, Farrell and Oczkowski (2002) found that by investigating 340 organizations, market-orientation is able to encompass learning-orientation, but learning-orientation is not able to encompass market-orientation. Market-orientation firms are effective in producing knowledge and this culture of knowledge production, inevitably leads to knowledge-questioning values. In conclusion, organizations that are able to appreciate the value of timely and relevant information (market-orientation), will also be intelligent enough to challenge existing assumptions about the way the market operates (learningorientation). E.- Market-orientation will positively lead to learning-orientation in SMEs. One of the most studied factors, which has synergy with market-orientation, is learning-orientation. Many researchers argued that market-orientation only enhances performance when it is combined with a learning-orientation. Since market-oriented firms focus on customers and their feedback in the established markets, they ignore the emerging markets, technologies, and competitors. Learning-orientation, embracing the commitment to learning, shared vision, open-mindedness and interorganizational knowledge sharing, fosters a set of knowledge-questioning and knowledge-enhancing values that leverage the adaptive behaviors provided by market-orientation to a higherorder learning that leads to the development of breakthrough products, services, and technologies, and the exploration of new markets. In addition, to learning-orientation, another mechanism emphasized by the management and marketing scholars is firm innovativeness, which refers to that portion of a firm's culture that promotes and supports novel ideas, experimentation, and openness to new ideas. Continuous Improvement Management has eight major characteristics: 1.- CI requires a long-term commitment. 2.- A change is needed in the organization culture.
3.- Staff participation in the quality improvement process is vital. 4.- CI organizations put their customers and clients above all other considerations. 5.- The quality chain needs to be in place. 6.- Teamwork is an essential part of CI. 7.- CI means continuous quality improvement. 8.- CI is management led and driven. Continuous Improvement Management is perceived by specialists as an evolutionary process which leads to a better way to compete, a process that adds value to existing processes and that encompasses the whole organization. There is a substantial range of opinions and ideas about what constitutes innovation as folloving: • “what makes innovation challenging is the fact that it is very difficult to agree on a common definition, and also to decide which firms are the most innovative and how to quantify innovation activity”; • “innovative companies are especially adroit at continually responding to change of any sort in their environments and are characterised by creative people developing new products and services”; • "technological innovation is the process by which industry generates new and improved products and production processes”; • "innovation is the creation of any product, service or process which is new to a business unit"; • "innovation is about doing things differently or better across products, processes or procedures for added value and/ or performance"; • Peter Drucker defines innovation as "the means by which the entrepreneur either creates new wealth-producing resources or endows existing resources with enhanced potential for creating wealth". Both of these definitions make reference to the terms change and creativity - they imply that innovation is the harnessing of creative ability within individuals and the workforce in response to change. A distinction between "radical and incremental" innovation also exists in the literature. • "Radical innovations refer to products and processes that result from advances in knowledge whereas incremental innovation refers to the continual process of improvement of techniques"; • "Innovation is the process of taking new ideas effectively and profitably through to satisfied customers". It is a process of continuous renewal involving the whole company and is an essential part of business strategy and every day practice. Reflecting the above discussion, effective business innovation will be defined as "the harnessing of creative ability within individuals and the workforce in response to change, by doing things differently or better across products, processes or procedures through the continual process of improvement of techniques and the successful production, assimilation and exploitation of novelty". Is it possible for organizations to progress from CI to effective business innovation as defined? To answer this, separate but related underlying questions need to be addressed. Why would SMEs want to become more innovative? How can SMEs progress from CI to effective business innovation?
Why would SMEs want to become more innovative? The idea that companies need to innovate to help maintain the correct strategic direction has been further developed. The innovation can help companies maintain or increase competitive advantage. Brown (1994) believes that companies must innovate for three main reasons: • they may seek to gain advantage by taking an offensive stance and an industry lead in the use of new techniques; • they may have to innovate in response to innovation by competition; • they may innovate to forestall or pre-empt innovation by others that would harm their own business. A stronger competitive position cost, and quality are linked to an SME's approach to innovation. Can SMEs progress from CI to effective business innovation? The linkage between innovation and CI can be seen where each type of innovation goes through the CI process for successful innovation. Successful innovation depends on the CI process, the Continuous Improvement strategy of CI and innovation will enable SMEs to develop their management understanding for future growth and competitiveness. 5.
Conclusions Entrepreneurship and innovation should be regarded as ongoing, everyday practice in organisations. If managers of many SME do not clearly assume the necessity to modernize their organizations, they will not be able to take advantage of all its resources' potentialities, not only the technological resources, but also of the capacities and qualifications of the human resources. Advanced manufacturing technologies, information and communication technologies and new services lead to the increases in productivity that is essential to any country’s economic growth under a perspective of competitive advantages. Successful organizations will be technological advances to create an appropriate organizational arrangement to support competitive growth. References  Laforet Sylvie (2006); Tann Jennifer – “Innovative characteristics of small manufacturing firms”, Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol.13, No.3, pp. 363-380.  Carneiro Alberto (2006) “Adopting new technologies“, Handbook of business strategy, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, ISSN 0894-4318, pp. 307-312.  Carneiro Alberto (2007) “What is required for growth?“, Business Strategy Series, Vol.8, No.1, pp. 51-57.  Zhao Fang (2005) “Exploring the synergy between entrepreneurship and innovation“, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, Vol.11, No.1, pp. 2541.  Darroch Jenny (2005) “Knowledge management, innovation and firm performance“, Journal of Knowledge Management, Vol.9, No.3, pp. 101-115.  Dalot$ Marius-Dan (2008) “Innovative change management in SME’s“, Conferin%a cu participare interna%ional$, “Inovare, Competitivitate &i etic$ în afaceri”, Universitatea Româno-American$, noiembrie
On the 24th January 2011, the Senate of Romanian Scientific Management Society (SSMAR) has awarded the prestigious title of Honorary Member to Professor John SAEE. The President of SSMAR, Professor Constantin RO"CA, allowed us to present the Laudatio made by the Vice President of the Scientific Council of SSMAR, Professor Theodor Valentin PURC#REA. The Romanian American University's Senate Hall hosted Wednesday, March 16, 2011 the Honorary Member Award Ceremony
LAUDATIO To Professor JOHN SAEE, PhD on the occasion of the Honorary Member Award Ceremony Wednesday, March 16, 2011 Romanian American University, Senate Hall Dear Professor Saee, Dear Professor Ro'ca, President of SSMAR, Dear Profesor Folcu%, Rector of the Romanian American University, Dear Colleagues, Distinguished guests, It is a privilege for me to read the Laudatio for a distinguished personality in todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Knowledge Society. The Senate of Romanian Scientific Management Society (SSMAR) decided unanimously to awards the title of Honorary Member to Professor JOHN SAEE for his outstanding contribution to the world of International Management. Professor John Saee is Chairperson of Global Divisions, Association of Management and International Association of Management, and Editor-in-Chief of the International Association of Management Journal (Journal of Management Systems, USA). In his tenure as an academic he has earned an international reputation for his achievements as author, researcher and scholar. Professor Saee has authored more than one hundred and thirty publications made up of books, book chapters and research articles, which have been published in academic and professional journals and refereed international conference proceedings in Australia, Europe, Asia and the USA. Professor John Saee has an interdisciplinary approach to research domain and his wide-ranging research publications and interests reflect a broader consideration of business discipline, including: Corporate Strategy, Organizational Behavior, Leadership, Global Ethics, International Negotiations, Management Education, International Business, Entrepreneurship, East and West cultural studies, Foreign Direct Investment and Knowledge Management. He is a noted scholar who enjoys international recognition and serves as an editor of several major international academic journals whilst having so far been invited as a distinguished keynote speaker and chair/reviewer at major international refereed conferences. Professor Saee has also provided managerial consultancies including executive management training to a number of institutions both in Australia and in Europe including Carrefour, the world second largest chain of Retail stores and Auchan - Europe's second largest chain of Retail stores. He is also a member of the Editorial Board of the
Scientific Review of the Romanian Distribution Committee affiliated to the International Association of the Distributive Trade - AIDA Brussels. Professor Saee received a Ph.D. from the University of Technology, Sydney, a Master of Commerce from the University of New South Wales, and a B.A. from Flinders University, South Australia. He is currently Professor of International Business, Corporate Strategy and Management as well as Academic Director – Doctoral Program at the Australian Graduate School of Entrepreneurship - the Faculty of Business and Enterprise, Swinburne University of Technology. His previous academic appointment at the Australian Graduate School of Entrepreneurship - the Faculty of Business and Enterprise included Academic Leader – International Business, European/Italian and Asian/Japanese Studies Academic Groups. Professor John Saee has held, in the last 20 years, senior academic positions at University and Business Schools including France where he has until recently held the positions of Chair Professor of International Business and Strategy and Academic Director – MBA and MIB postgraduate degree programs at a leading French Grande Ecole (Elite University). Due to his senior academic appointments, Professor Saee has actively been involved in policy making decisions at the university, faculty and school levels. Professor Saee was also instrumental behind the globalisation of business education in Australia, Asia and Europe. As a leading senior academic at an Australian university and French elite university, he was instrumental in the design, development and launch of undergraduate and postgraduate degree programs both onshore and offshore, including, Hong Kong, Malaysia and China, Scotland, Korea and France. He has delivered seminars and courses in a number of countries including Australia, the United Kingdom, France, Romania, Scotland, Germany, China, Malaysia, Hong Kong, the Netherlands and Lithuania. For his outstanding contribution to research and teaching excellence as well as the promotion of international education and culture throughout the world, Professor John Saee has received an excellence award from the American University. His recent books have been used as text book and scholarly research books in numerous countries around the world: Contemporary Corporate Strategy: Global Perspectives, Taylor & Francis Group, Routledge, August 2007 (within the context of undergoing cultural and mindset shift paradigms whilst developing corporate strategies that are increasingly attuned to the highly competitive and dynamic business realities arising from globalizing national economies around the world; over twenty research papers examining various aspects of corporate strategy in different national and international settings); The Global Business Handbook: The Eight Dimensions of International Management, Gower Pub Co, Feb 18 2009, co-author (based on the structure of the very successful IESEG International School of Management's programme on international management; considering cultural, social, geographic and legal factors in doing business across borders, by thinking globaly and acting localy); Managerial Competence Within the Tourism and Hospitality Service, Taylor & Francis Group, Routledge, 1 edition, Oct 17 2006 (examining the cross-cultural implications of planning: workplace communication, recruitment/promotion, induction, training, supervision, industrial relations, management of change, customer service, financial management and marketing; an excellent balance of theory and practical application, taking an innovative angle on the analysis of the host countries managers, undergoing culture shock); Managing Organizations in a Global Economy: An Intercultural Perspective, Thomson South-Western, Feb 10 2004 (providing the latest conceptual tools and practical
applications on the aspects of cross-cultural management, while recognizing the growing importance of cultural diversity in most modern organizations around the world, in terms of clientele, human resources, and ownership, this text provides the latest conceptual tools and practical applications on the aspects of cross-cultural management; examining many of management’s most vital topics including globalization, worldviews, managerial communication, organizational culture, leadership, motivation, negotiation, conflict, and ethics while also emphasizing the cross-cultural dimensions important in managerial success). Professor Saee has held membership of the following academic and professional associations: Member – CNRS - National Centre for Scientific Research (France’s most prestigious National Research Centre which boasts 47 French Nobel Prize Laureates as its members). Associate Fellow - Australian Institute of Management (AFAIM) Member – European Academy of Management Member – European Knowledge Management Association Member - Australian and New Zealand Academy of Management Member - Academy of International Business Member- Business and Economic Society International Member - Association of Management/International Association of Management Member – Federation of Business Disciplines – USA Member – International Management Development Association Member – SW Academy of International Business. Let me conclude on a personal note: We were really provoked following the link between some key words highlighted by Professor John Saee, Editor- in- Chief, Journal of Management Systems, USA, such as Entrepreneurs, Ethics, Moral philosophy, Globalisation (in 2009, while approaching ethical challenges confronting entrepreneurs within contemporary global economy - in search of a new world ethics), Lisbon Agenda, R&D expenditures, institutions (in 2010, while approaching the link between public policies for R&D and the R&D performances, at national level, in EU-27) and, his pledge some years ago for developing a theoretical framework concerning the use of internal marketing as a vehicle for the successful implementation of quality management. Some thoughts that belong to Peter Drucker came into my mind: quality in a product or service is what the customer gets out and is willing to pay for; the material can and should be used to advance the human spirit; the importance of the “knowledge work” in „The Age of Discontinuity” within the context, at that time, of the emerging knowledge society. Today, in 2011, we are under the pressure of generating new knowledge, in the actual economic climate of uncertainty being a real need of knowledge management as an enabler for business process change, integrating implicit and explicit knowledge, keeping this knowledge available and up-to-date, while focusing on organizational learning. That is why we are so happy to say that - paraphrasing Henry Ford - we salute the beginning of coming together of Professor John Saee, we are convinced of the progress of keeping together and of the success of working together. We kindly ask Professor Ovidiu FOLCU", the Rector of the Romanian American University, on behalf of President of SSMAR, Professor Constantin Ro#ca PhD, to hand in the specific signs of appreciation the Diploma of Honorary Member of SSMAR.
Professor Theodor Valentin PURC!REA, PhD Vice President of the Scientific Council of SSMAR
EUROPEAN LEVEL COMMUNICATION THROUGH NON-CONVENTIONAL MEDIA Professor Mihai PAPUC, PhD Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest firstname.lastname@example.org
Abstract: The present paper illustrates a few unconventional means of communication (untraditional) in the European public space and the attempts of some public Romanian legal persons at the use of social media. Keywords: social media, blog, social networks like Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, multimedia tools such as YouTube, Flickr, opinion sharing tools such as Wikipedia, GoogleReader.
Communication, regardless of its nature, no longer takes place through traditional media. More so, depending on the groups that it targets, communication is more and more often achieved by means of social media. European communication obviously fits this same paradigm. In an essay published in 1979 entitled “Intellectual Power in France”, Régis Debray1 classifies the history of intellectual power in France into three eras - the university era, that of written publications, and the mediated era, starting in 1968 (the year in which major student protests took place in France, culminating in a general strike within the entire society in May, , movements which lead general De Gaulle to lose his power). The classification done by Régis Debray (who meanwhile established the fundamentals of a new discipline entitled mediology2) is extremely valid and represents a key and tool in the analysis of social events, not only regarding the French society, but at a global level. Now more than ever, it is obvious that we are living in a mediated era, where traditional media means such as the written publications, audio-video press, coexist and are in (rapidly increasing) competition with nonconventional media (globally entitled means of “social media”). Among the latter, we mention: blogs and other social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, multimedia tools such as YouTube, Flickr or for opinion sharing and information dissemination – Wikipedia, GoogleReader, Eopinions. Effectively, communication, regardless of its nature, no longer takes place through traditional media. More so, depending on the groups that it targets, communication is more and more often achieved by means of social media. European communication obviously fits this same 1
Jules Régis Debray (born 1941) is a French intellectual, journalist, government official and professor. He is known for his theorization of mediology, a critical theory of the long-term transmission of cultural meaning in human society; and for having fought in 1967 with Marxist revolutionary Che Guevara in Bolivia. 2 In the 1990s, Régis Debray coined the term mediology. Is this a new discipline that has emerged in academic circles or simply the whimsy of a philosopher? Not widely discussed in either francophone or Anglo-Saxon milieus, mediology remains fairly unknown and little taught. But by reading Debray's books or issues of Cahiers de médiologie, we can gain a better understanding of what mediology is.
paradigm, whether it is communication made by European institutions or political decision makers, or, on the other hand, communication of other players in European public affairs, interested in sending a message to the “European public space”: professional federations or associations, NGOs, consultancy companies, publications, or even people simply interested in European affairs. For example, for over two years, the European Commission has been “attacking” the YouTube website in terms of communication, and so many videos on the policies conducted by the Commission, may be accessed and viewed. At the same time, more and more European members of Parliament provide information related to their work on personal websites and / or blogs, and a (growing) number of them are already present on networks like Facebook or Twitter. Moreover, even the European political parties and political groups in Parliament have adapted, almost in an institutionalized form, to the new developments and imperatives of communication, on the one hand, and new media, on the other. Thus, the European People's Party (EPP) is now on Facebook and on YouTube, and the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) has posted videos on YouTube. The Greens party / European Free Alliance also has a presence on Youtube, however less significant than the People's Party and the Liberals. The activity of another political group, The Confederal Group of the European United Left / Nordic Green Left, may be followed, other from their official site, on sites like YouTube and Twitter. But perhaps the most advanced political group in terms of using new media in communication is the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament, currently on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. Blogs or the Twitter network, are among the preferred communication tools of large consulting companies, operating in European public affairs. Thus, for European Parliament elections in June 2009, one such company created a special blog, posting all public information, but especially the informal kind, that the company gathered through its own means (an action which specialists in public affairs in Brussels call “intelligence tracking”). During and after the European elections to the constituent sessions of Parliament and parliamentary committees, the company blog that was frequently accessed by all those interested in finding first-hand information, backstage information, news regarding the Members of the European Parliament, of the members of the parliamentary committees or information regarding the negotiations between political groups. Moreover, some information was also posted via the Twitter network. What would be the motivation for such a company to invest resources of time, energy and especially human resources, in finding some information behind the scenes, and afterwards make it public is a natural question. Why not just keep that kind of competitive advantage for itself, but prefer to publish it, in a manner which implies that, almost automatically, it will be shared by other actors, including its competitors? In a first assessment, which would take into account the specific European public space, such an attitude might seem paradoxical and incomprehensible. But one of the key features of the European public space is transparency, which is very much encouraged and promoted, both by European institutions and other actors whose interests are better represented in a transparent environment. "The world is a small village, was and is one of the metaphors related to the globalization phenomenon. Paraphrasing and updating this metaphor to the European public space in Brussels, we could say: "The world is a small village, and Brussels is an even smaller village". Well, in the "village of Brussels", where, metaphorically speaking, everybody knows everybody, transparency is, as mentioned before, one of the key features, be it exercised at the institutional level, or that promoted of other actors (federations and associations, NGOs, consulting companies, publishers, journalists). In such an environment, so many times transparent, players do not gain a competitive advantage when they don’t release information, but on the contrary, when they share it with others. That's because, in the same way, people can see, from employees to competitors, that you're a step
ahead. And in the "village of Brussels" to be one step ahead, especially in consultancy, is essential. Most times, it is even decisive. Prestigious publications such as The Financial Times, The Economist or EUObserver have blogs dedicated European business, where many opinions and ideas can be found, which is sometimes a supplement to the articles in publications or, not infrequently, a more direct approach to European issues. The blog of the correspondent to the newspaper "Liberation" in Brussels, Jean Quatremer (na: who, among others, was the one who made significant contributions through disclosures which in 1999 lead to the resignation of the Commission led by Jacques Santer) is a mandatory "destination" for any player of the European public space that wants to find original information, especially about the European Commission and European Parliament. It is also worth mentioning that, in the "village of Brussels", transparency is manifested on the one hand, and determined on the other hand, by the fact that European players have started to monitor each other, out of the need to find new information and to be aware of any development that happens in the European public space. And this monitorisation can only increase. It can be said that the monitoring of all critical journalists and political blogs (especially those of the MEPs) is performed daily, as well as the monitoring of sites of European political parties. However, monitoring isn’t carried out just by players in consultancy, but by everyone else, on a more or less organized basis, not necessarily daily. This monitoring has another very important effect: the density of information from the European public space in general and in Brussels in particular, is very high and, as such, in order to be visible, one must communicate. If we were to come up with a slogan to describe this situation, it would be: “To communicate is to exist”. Where to place the communication of Romanian actors in the European public space? If we are to stay in the “village” metaphor for the European public space, Romanian players are still on edge of the “small village” of Brussels. There aren’t too many Romanian EMPs who have personal blogs and there are even fewer people who can be found on other social networks, but their number is growing. In respect of the other Romanian players, their presence in the European public space, determined by communication, is very low (na: the "Casa Europei" blog is a notable exception, especially since, apart from its role in communication, it also plays an exceptional educational role). As for Romanian journalists, the number of those who are interested in European affairs is also very low, and when they report on European topics, they almost always do it from the perspective of Romanian reality. In this context, language plays an important role - thus, to enter and be part of the European public space, a player of any nationality must communicate in an international language, preferably English. Even those nostalgic for concepts like "language, race and country" must recognize the fact that in the European environment, English is used unanimously. Conclusions: We may say that the main features of the European public space are: transparency - the continuous expansion of social media; - information density - English as a common language. All this helps create a space where anyone has access and can build his status of European player (and can be recognized as such), provided they have something to say and they communicate. In the nineteenth century, men of letters and culture, urged the Romanians to: “Write on, boys, just write” (Ion Heliade Radulescu) or “Write, Children, just write” (Titu Maiorescu). Adapting these “classical” urges to the media age we live in, to the characteristics of the European public space and its heterogeneous and multi-national actors, it would be no mistake at all to say: “Communicate, just communicate!”. References: [1.] Beciu Camelia (2009), Communication and media statement, Ed.comunicare.ro; [2.] Dominick Joseph (2009), Media in digital era, Ed.comunicare.ro; [3.] Rotaru Ileana (2010), Virtual communication, Ed. Tritonic, Buc.,
HOW TO KEEP LOYAL RELATIONSHIPS WITH SERVICE CUSTOMERS USING HOLISTIC MARKETING Professor Theodor Valentin PURC!REA Ph.D Romanian-American University, 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest
email@example.com Lecurer Monica Paula RA"IU, Ph.D Romanian-American University, 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest firstname.lastname@example.org
Abstract: In today’s economic uncertainty and turbulence, creating and maintaining loyal relationships with service customers over the long term represents a necessary condition for business success. Winning in times like these requires recognizing the key role that customers and their experiences play in overcoming challenging economic circumstances. In this paper we present effective techniques to achieving customer loyalty; and also holistic marketing as a successful strategy for reaching the same goal. Key words: loyal relationships, service customer, customer loyalty, holistic marketing Introduction In today’s economic uncertainty, the importance of delivering a superior experience to the service customer based upon precise knowledge of each individual, is heightened. As one customer service expert observed: “The good news is that those companies who are making an effort to build customer loyalty through exceptional customer service are finding themselves at least partially insulated against this economic backlash. In tough times, people like to deal with companies that genuinely care about them.We are more careful with what we spend and who we spend it with. Companies who have been mistreating, ignoring, or otherwise abusing their customers will suffer the most” . Consumers’ feelings about the product depends on product distribution and consumer experience during the purchasing process. Consumers’ perception about the product affects how they mentally position the product in relation to competitive products. When a service company is focused on customers it is able to see how customers respond to its efforts to meet their needs and expectations. This customer alignment and integration presumes having good customer data and using it efficiently. Customers always appreciate the manner in which the company and its partners deal with dissatisfaction, inefficiency and opportunity. The “machinery” made up of the employees’ engagement and the clients’ engagement can significantly influence the company’s performance. Why is this phenomenon possible? Because in reality people feel more than they think, while “models” require and expected too much thinking from customers. Today’s
marketing people - brand managers - are more preoccupied about customer engagement rather than finding new customers, the difficulty consisting in the fact that the recognition of the customer engagement’s need and the actual measurement of the real engagement are two different things. And real engagement is the consequence of the marketing/communication programme which produces and increased level of brand perception as meeting and overwhelming customer expectations (“brand equity”), while customer expectations are generally based on emotions . Necessary steps in getting loyal customers in the present turbulent marketplace Service businesses have three choices in these tough economic times: ignore the situation, accept defeat, or take control. The first two options - doing nothing and riding out the storm or accepting the pounding - can be paralyzing, with devastating consequences. However, by taking control, businesses can stay ahead of competitors, grow market share, and ensure viability in all types of market conditions. One way to take control is to consider all your options when it comes to your people, your processes, and your technologies A strong commitment to supporting existing customers to expand the user base, ensure loyalty, and turn customers into advocates is always important to business success and critical in difficult economic times . How do service companies get customer loyalty in the global and uncertain economy? It’s very important to understand the consumer behavior, how customers buy products, what products are purchased together and what is the meaning of a satisfied consumer experience – which can be defined as the cognitions and feelings the consumer experiences during the use of a product or service; managers’ goal must be the converting of merely satisfied customers into completely satisfied customers: only the completely satisfied customers should be considered loyal . Therefore, it is important to see what kind of customer data there are inside the company and bring all of the various types of captured and stored information together - by conducting an audit of all customer information that is available within the organization. The first business command should be a holistic overview of all of the customer data and customer information and customer institutional knowledge. In the service industry, business success comes only after deeply understanding the customers, by listening to their needs and by offering what they are asking for. This is something that can be easily lost or even impossible to gain, if this is the single method used by the marketing team. For the marketing people in all the domains, it represents an important responsibility to share this desire to listen, to develop and to deliver at every level inside the organization. Although modern marketing focuses on strategies (mixes) that give impulse to sales and to attracting new customers, the company’s most effective defense weapon is represented by customer retention. According to the specialists (and we agree with them) customers rule in this uncertain and turbulent economy, for two primary reasons: 1. Customers give “growth” for the company. “Growth” comes from the knowledge that even in the worst economic downturn, some customers will still be spending, some customers will still increase in value, and some customers will pay a premium to stay with the company rather than incur the expense and inconvenience of switching to a competitor. Cost savings arise because service and marketing resources can be more intelligently applied to those individual customers with the highest likelihood of growth ;
2. Customer retention is a strategic capability. In an uncertain economy, you can’t afford to lose customers, because they cost considerably more to replace than to retain. Solidifying those relationships is a strategic capability founded upon trust - a belief by the customer that the company has her or his best interest at heart, and can be depended upon for respect, openness, tolerance, and honesty. Trust can be destroyed through a single distressing customer experience; or, it can be destroyed through a series of more minor service disappointments . Therefore, an underlying competence for locking in customer relationships is the ability to deliver excellent customer experiences. If customers rule in an uncertain and turbulent economy, then it stands to reason that the metrics that matter must be focused on customers and their experiences with your company. For these to be actionable, they must also be leading indicators (or predictors) of changes in the intention of customers to alter their buying behavior in the future . These leading indicators of lifetime value change are: - lifestyle changes: change in employment, a new household address, the birth of a child, or an alteration in marital status (married/divorced); - lifetime value drivers: include variables such as changes in the frequency of purchases, changes in the mix of products bought, the predicted attrition likelihood of the customer, and the customer’s estimated “share of wallet” for your company; in an uncertain economy, there is likely to be increased variation in these drivers as customers react to economic conditions and, for that reason, they contribute to an improved prediction of lifetime value in tough times; - behavioral cues: a complaint or a missed payment might signal a pending decrease in value; while signing up for a newsletter, referring a friend to your company, or upgrading a service plan might indicate a forthcoming increase in value; - customer attitudes: attitudes are important in anticipating increases or decreases in customer lifetime value, because changes in attitudes are precursors of changes in behavior; the most common such metrics are customer satisfaction and willingness to recommend a company to a friend or colleague; in challenging economic circumstances, changes in customer attitudes need to be evaluated relative to what is happening in the larger competitive landscape. Prestigious authors (Kaplan and Norton, 2003) consider that customer relationship management represents the most important dimension of the company’s strategy. In this respect, Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton have analyzed the four essential processes in customer management: client selection, acquisition, retention and growth. This is because the relation has to maintain on the long term the contact with the customers, due to a proactive approach which strategically integrates the four processes – considering every process individually – maximizing in this way the client’s value, and the value creation, in general. Many companies make the mistake of considering sale as just a transaction and this is causing lose of contact with customers, without knowing exactly if these still are firm’s clients . From a strategic view, CRM focuses on the profitable development and management of customer relationships involving 5 key processes : 1. Strategy development involves the assessment of business strategy (including articulation of the company’s vision, industry trends, and competition). 2. Value creation translates the business and customer strategies into specific value propositions for customers and the firm. The value created for customers includes all the benefits that are delivered through priority tiered services, loyalty rewards, and customization and personalization. 3. Multichannel integration: Most service firms interact with their customers through a multitude of channels, and it has become a challenge to serve customers well across these many potential interfaces and offer a unified customer interface that delivers customization
and personalization. 4. Information management: Service delivery across many channels relies on the firm’s ability to collect customer information from all channels, integrate it with other relevant information, and make the relevant information available to the front line (or to the customer in a self-service context) at the various touch points. 5. Performance assessment must address three critical questions. First, is the CRM strategy creating value for its key stakeholders (customers, employees, and shareholders)? Second, are the marketing objectives and service delivery performance objectives (call center service standards such as call waiting, abortion, and first-time resolution rates) being achieved? Third, is the CRM process itself performing up to expectations (are the relevant strategies being set, is customer and firm value being created, is the information management process working effectively, and is integration across customer service channels being achieved effectively)? The performance assessment process should drive the continuous improvement of the CRM strategy itself. Although firms put enormous amounts of money and effort into loyalty initiatives, they often are not successful in building true customer loyalty. Customer satisfaction is the key to building loyal relationships with customers. Fully satisfied customers are more likely to become loyal customers, even advocates for the service firm. The main ways in which firms can manage customer satisfaction and build and maintain loyal relationships with customers refer to: understand what can go wrong; focus on controllable issues; manage customer’s expectations; offer satisfaction guarantees; make it easy for the customers to complain; create relationship programs; make customer satisfaction measurement an ongoing priority . Why using holistic marketing? During the final quarter of the 20th century, marketing became an organizational function and a set of processes for creating, communicating and delivering value to customers and for managing customer relationships in ways that benefit the organization and stakeholders. In 2009, marketing management professionals must maintain a precise focus on every customer from multiple perspectives. Holistic marketing recognizes that everyone, from everywhere, at any time can control every aspect of the buying relationship with a few mouse clicks. Holistic marketing represents a marketing strategy which is developed by thinking about the business as a whole. When using a holistic marketing strategy, every aspect of the business must be carefully considered. The company must think how the consumer will interact with its product, its website, its advertising materials, and everything else . Specialists consider that holistic marketing is utilizing the body, mind and spirit of both the marketer and customer to bring them into a lasting marketing relationship for greater marketing success. This marketing approach supports the customer by expanding his/her body, mind and spirit potential. The marketer obtains more power when he/she accesses all of his/her Body – Mind - Spirit energy zones; when the marketer gets closer to the customer, the marketer helps the customer access his/her Body – Mind - Spirit energy zones and thus power; when the Marketer - Customer energy systems become integrated/one, marketing success follows. The main applications of the holistic marketing are: articulating business vision, values, mission, and goals/objectives; developing a strategic plan; conducting marketing research; selecting target markets and key customers; configuring products and services; making value and price statements; creating promotional messages and integrating media; managing the sales force; managing marketing/distribution partners; doing internal marketing; and others .
Everything matters under the holistic marketing umbrella.Why is this important? In a mature capital economy, product and service offerings have multiplied exponentially along with competition. Information is available instantly. The new marketing paradigm has shifted the emphasis from product and production, to selling, then integrated marketing within the holistic marketing concept. Senior Management, Marketing department, Other departments
Products & Services Communications Channels
Performance Marketing Sales Revenue, Brand & Customer Equity, Ethics, Environment, Legal, Community
Relationship Marketing Customers, Partners
Figure 1. Holistic marketing content - Source: http://www.marketingholistics.com/ Holistic marketing is a great tool for any business one wishes to market effectively and keep loyal relationships with its clients. The first step in holistic marketing is to start to the soul searching process. You need to look inside yourself in order to figure out what is going on in your life and what you wish to accomplish. Ask questions that will help figure out what inner strengths that you may possess, then figure out how to draw on those strengths. Another step is to figure out what you and the potential clients have in common. Clients need to be able to feel comfortable and trust who they are doing business with, no matter what field of expertise it might be. No one is going to see a doctor if they don't feel comfortable with them . In order to be successful, and establish loyal relationships with your clients, you have to be ready to market yourself every day. This doesn't mean that you have to be in everyone's face all the time, pushing the products or services, with holistic marketing there is a more natural approach to this. Treat it the same as making a new friend or acquaintance, be friendly, nice, confident, and don't make it seem like the objective is to sell. This will get the attention of more potential clients or customers in a more positive way. Satisfaction surveys to the customers is a proven method to assess the state of customersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; perception of their experience. Interestingly, the very act of asking customers about their satisfaction with a service interaction using a survey positively influences their behavior. Research has shown that surveyed customers are less than half as likely to defect
and more profitable than those who had not been surveyed, and doing so also enhances their responsiveness to promotions . The discipline of listening to customers allows a “learning relationship” to be formed, in which the customer teaches the company about what she or he wants. In addition to facilitating a positive service experience, it also creates a “switching cost” (measured in time and effort) for the customer to defect to a competitor. As a consequence, customers become more loyal - a critical business outcome, especially in the present turbulent marketplace . Everyone needs to be involved in order to be successful. So many people fear marketing when it can actually be embraced and transformed into something that can be enjoyed. Conclusions Today’s uncertainty and turbulence in the economy isn’t going to last forever. But the strength of the relationships that a company builds with its customers will endure. The principles documented in this paper will assist companies in making smart decisions that not only assist them in turbulent times, but also position them well for the turnaround when it arrives. Service companies have to recognize that customers rule in an uncertain and turbulent economy, because they provide the best “cheap growth” option, requiring only incremental investments to lock in a long-term strategic advantage. It is a necessity to measure and monitor the leading indicators of lifetime value change, in order to find out how best to manage customers; and focus upon customer experience metrics to ensure the delivery of high quality service that drives the purchase decision. Companies must also listen to and learn from customers, to understand their needs and preferences, in order to enhance the customer experience. And holistic marketing makes it possible. References: [1.] Belding, S., (2008). Customer Service - cure for recession headaches?, February 11, Available at: <http://www.beldingskills.com/Blog/?p=85> [Accessed 28 December 2010] [2.] Borle, S., Dholakia, U. M., Singh, S. S. and Westbrook, R. A., (2007). The Impact of Survey Participation on Subsequent Customer Behavior: An Empirical Investigation, Marketing Science, 26(5) [3.] Jones., T. O. & Sasser, W. E., (1995). Why satisfied customers defect, 1995, Harvard Business Review, pp. 73, 88-100 in Purc$rea, Th., Ra!iu, Monica, 2008. On Effects of the Producer-Retailer-Consumer Relationship's Knowledge on the Marketing Future, Analele Universit$!ii din Oradea, Seria: "tiin!e Economice, Tom XVII, volumul IV, Management and Marketing, pp. 1143-1152 [4.] Kaplan, R. S., Norton, D. P., (2003). Keeping Your Balance With Customers, HBS Working Knowledge, July 14 in Ra!iu, M., Purc$rea, Th., 2008. Memorable Customer Experience - a Continuous Revolution in the Service Sector, International Conference on Business Excellence, ICBE 2008, Business Excellence, Special Issue of Review of Management and Economical Engineering, vol.7, No.7, pp. 67-70. [5.] Levey, R., 2004. The Confidence Game, (2004), Available at: <http://directmag.com/mag/marketing_confidence_game> [Accessed 28 December 2010] [6.] Meyer, C. and Schwager, A., (2007). Understanding Customer Experience, Harvard Business Review, February, pp. 117-126. [7.] Payne, A. and Frow, P., (2005). A Strategic Framework for Customer Relationship Management, Journal of Marketing, 69, October, pp. 167–176.
[8.] Peppers, D. and Rogers, M., (2005). Return on Customer: Creating Maximum Value From Your Scarcest Resource, New York: Doubleday [9.] Peppers & Rogers White Paper, (2008). Winning on Service in an Uncertain Economy, Peppers & Rogers Group a division of Carlson Marketing Worldwide, [online] Available at: <http://www.mycustomer.com/cgibin/library.cgi?action=detail&id=6421> [Accessed 28 December 2010] [10.] Purc$rea, Th., Ionescu, Al., Ra!iu, Monica Paula, Negricea, C. I., Purc$rea, Irina, (2010). Facing the challenges of the distribution process through interactive information exchange and innovation, Romanian Distribution Committee Magazine, Issue 1, „Carol Davila” University Press, Bucharest, p. 79 [11.] Ra!iu, M., Negricea, C., (2008). Quality and value - the keys to achieve customer retention and loyalty, Proceedings of the International Economic Conference “Integrative Relations between the European!Union Institutions and the Member States”, vol. 2, “Section 2: Management, Marketing and Tourism of a European Outlook”, May 15!16, 2008, Sibiu, Romania, p. 165. [12.] Rosenberg, Larry J., Holistic Marketing. A New Way of Looking at Getting & Keeping Customers, Communication Miracles Consultings, LLC, [online] Available at: <http://communicationmiracles.com/holistic.htm> p. 8, 10 [13.] Vandepas, Michelle, (2008). Holistic Marketing, February 23, [online] Available at: <http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Michelle_Vandepas>[Accessed 28 December 2010] [14.] 9 Key Plays for CRM Success in 2009 and Beyond, [online] Available at> <http://www.customerthink.com/files2/9%20Key%20CRM%20Plays.pdf> [Accessed 28 December 2010] [15.] Website: <http://www.businessdictionary.com> [Accessed 28 December 2010]
THE KEY ASPECTS OF THE STRATEGY
Associated Professor Ionu$ PANDELIC! AGORA University of Oradea email@example.com
Lecturer Amalia PANDELIC!, PhD University of Pitesti pandelica.amalia@Yahoo.com Abstract: Cooperative strategy became a very fashionable area of intellectual debate in the 1990s, rather as competitive strategy was in the 1980s following the publication of works by Porter (1980,1985). Managers are responsible for health of their enterprises both in the present and in the future. Strategic management is the part of their job that relates to the future. Strategic management is about taking action today to achieve benefits in the future. The propose of this paper is to highlight the key aspects of the strategy that managers should take into account in the strategic planning process. Keywords: strategy, strategic planning, cooperative strategy Introduction Cooperative strategy became a very fashionable area of intellectual debate in the 1990s, rather as competitive strategy was in the 1980s following the publication of works by Porter (1980,1985). The reasons for this have been far more profound than mere fashion. Markets have become increasingly global during this period, tastes have converged, technologies have shown a disturbing tendency not to endure for long before being replaced by others, and product life cycles have become ever shorter in a society driven by the restless energy of the advertiser. All this has meant the need for greater capital investment than one firm, however big, can regularly cope with, and the need for allies who span the major markets of the globe and have between them the necessary competencies to meet the demands of the global market (Murray and Mahon, 1993; Ohmae, 1989). Attesting to this proliferation of cooperative activity, Keith Glaister, Rumy Husan, and Peter Buckley (Chapter 2) provide an inventory of joint ventures between UK firms and firms located in the Triad (USA, Western Europe, and Japan) and in non-Triad countries over the 1990 to 1996 period. The academic and popular business literature has followed suit, with a vast increase in publications on cooperative activity. Though the term 'alliances' may at some point have referred strictly to a particular type of relationship, it now serves as an 'umbrella' label for a host of cooperative relationships. Published studies have emphasized the varied facets of this phenomenon, including antecedent conditions (e.g. Forrest and Martin, 1992; Ingham, 1990; Lorange, Roos, and Bronn, 1992), formation patterns (e.g. Glaister, Husan, and Buckley, chap. 2, below; Gulati, 1995a), success factors (e.g. Mohr and Spekman, 1994), critical issues (Doz and Shuen, 1995; Killing, 1988), symmetry and dependency (e.g. Harrigan, 1988; Singh and Mitchell, 1996); outcomes (e.g. Bleeke and Ernst, 1995; Hamel, Doz, and Prahalad, 1989.) Indeed, academics from divergent disciplines have come forward to tender explanations of, and prescriptions for, alliance formation, functioning, singular processes,
and evolution, a good few of which are treated in this volume. Surveying the terrain from a wide-ranging perspective, this introductory chapter reviews the principal theories of cooperative strategy, and illustrates where and how the various contributions contained in this volume fit within the fast-growing literature. The Rationale for Cooperation Empirical studies of cooperative behavior are ordinarily framed within distinct theoretical perspectives, albeit not always explicitly, the most popular of which appear to be market power theory, transaction cost theory, agency theory, the resource-based view, and resource dependence theory, although game theory, real options theory, and social network theory appear to be growing in popularity. Each makes a singular contribution to our understanding of cooperative behavior, though a generally accepted and unifying theory is still largely absent (cf. Parkhe, 1993; Child and Faulkner, 1998; Koza and Lewin, 1998). Specific contributions include the identification of antecedent conditions that provide a strategic rationale for entering alliances, the anticipation of specific returns, and the selection of a governance structure (Gulati, 1998). Given particular affinities with either economics or organization theory, they exhibit distinct features. Indeed, a review and comparison of the most common theoretical frameworks may illustrate this. The nature of strategy Managers are responsible for health of their enterprises both in the present and in the future. Strategic management is the part of their job that relates to the future. Strategic management is about taking action today to achieve benefits in the future. The future is always uncertain so that strategic management decisions must be made with information that is always incomplete and often wrong. So it is necessary for managers to manage strategically. Mintzberg (1989) emphasized that managers has to work at an unrelenting place and their activities are characterized by brevity, variety and discontinuity. That is why, managers should manage strategically within this pattern of work. The objective of strategic management, in this context is to prepare a company for future success. Strategic management implies bought thinking and action. Thought on its own may be intellectually stimulating but it is not strategic management. There are some limits to the ability of managers to foresee the future, to understand the significance of change, to conceive strategies, and to implement strategies successfully. In the specialized literature there are many definitions for the strategy concept. Different definitions are emphasizing different aspects and adopt different perspectives. For instance, Cummings (1993) considerate strategy as the business you propose to carry out. Kenneth (1971) defined strategy as the pattern of major objectives, purposes and essential policies for achieving those purposes, stated in such a way as to define what business the company is in or it to be in and the kind of company it is or is it to be. Ansoff (1987) offered another definition, stating that strategy is a rule for making decisions. In 1997, Kare-Silver (1997) suggested that strategy should have just two elements â&#x20AC;&#x201C; future intent and source of advantage. As a conclusion, the definition of the strategy concept varies in the international strategic management literature, and this variation comes from the different perspectives of approaching: military thinking, political thinking, academic, and practitionerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s point of view. The key aspects of the strategy Strategy should be seen from different perspectives:
Strategy as a statement of ends, purpose, and intent The purpose has to be the driver of the future. The roll of strategy is to determine, clarify, or refine purpose. This means creating a new vision of the future to inspire the company to greater efforts or wider scope. Strategy as a high level plan Strategy is also concerned with the means by which purpose will be achieved. The strategy will define such means in broad and general terms. This means to find the correct answers to the following questions: who, when, where, how, and with what. Generally, strategy tend to be at a higher level and to take an overall view. Strategy as the means of beating the competition Many ideas about strategy drive from the analogy of war and games. An important aim of the strategy is to win and this means beating the competition in a game of the type â&#x20AC;&#x201C; won or lost. As a consequence, strategies required to keep ahead of the competitors as a bunch. Strategy as an element of leadership Strategy has close association with leadership and setting strategy is one of the responsibilities of leaders. When leaders change, strategies tend to change. On the other hand, if the strategy needs to change, it may be necessary to appoint a new leader. A change of leader may be bought a symbol that a change in strategy has occurred and an opportunity to appoint an individual with a leadership style appropriate to a new strategy. Strategy as positioning for the future Strategy may be seen as preparation for the uncertainty of the future. Some trends may be appropriate but other changes may occur which may contradict the general direction of the trend. So another important aim of the strategy is to position the company for the future so as to be prepared for the uncertainty. Strategy as building capability Some capabilities may be seen as improving the chances of the future success so that the strategy may relate to building these capabilities. The capabilities of a company may be exceptional or event unique. The essence of any firm of any firm is partly defined by the unique set of skills and knowledge of its people and team. Strategic building of capabilities can exploit this uniqueness. Strategy as fit between capabilities and opportunities One aim of strategy is to achieve survival and future success. Successes results from a good match between the capabilities of the company and the opportunities to serve the needs of consumers better than competitors. Strategy as a pattern of behavior resulting from the culture Any company has its own culture. The culture can be easy observed but hard to change. The strategy of a company should be aligned with its culture and should generate a desirable behavior. Because, culture is hard to imitate, culture may be an important source of competitive advantage. Strategy as an emerging pattern of successful behavior Only a few strategies are implemented in their entirely in the form in which they were formulated. Part of the strategy may be in recognizing the patterns that seem to have led to success even if these patterns arose by chance rather than as a result of planned actions Conclusions:
These multiple aspects of the strategy are rather complementary than contradictory. In the strategic planning process, managers should project a future image of the company which is a desirable and realistic one and in the fundamental points is better then preset situation of the company. That is why, the future image should be project taking into account the companyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s resources, capabilities and competences and should reflects the future trends of the markets in which company operates. The strategy is the path that company will follow to meet the future image. The strategy should be aligned with the culture and to contribute in generating a desirable behavior. References: [1.] Ansoff, H.I. (1987), Corporate Strategy, rev. end., London:Penguin;15t pub. McGrawHill, 1965) [2.] Bleeke, J. and Ernst D. (1993), Collaborating to Compete: Using Strategic Alliances and Acquisitions in the Global Marketplace, New York: Wiley [3.] Cummings, S. (1993), The First Strategists, Long Range Planning, 26/ 3: 133-5 [4.] Forrest, J. E., Martin, M. J. C. (1992), 'Strategic Alliances between Large and Small Research Intensive Organizations: Experiences in the Biotechnology Industry', R&D Management, 22: 41-54. [5.] Doz, Shuen, A. (1995), 'From Intent to Outcome: The Evolution and Govern-ance of Interfirm Partnerships', in INSEAD Working Papers (INSEAD). [6.] Hamel, G., Doz, Y. L., Prahalad, C. K. (1989), 'Collaborate with your Competitors-And Win', Harvard Business Review, 67: 133-9. [7.] Harrigan, K. R. (1988), 'Strategic Alliances and Partner Asymmetries', in F. J. Contractor and P. Lorange (eds.), Cooperative Strategies in International Business (New York: Lexington Books), 205-26. [8.] Killing, J. P. (1983), Strategy for Joint Venture Success, London: Croom Helm [9.] 8. Killing, J. P. (1988), 'Understanding Alliances: The Role of Task and Organizational Complexity', in F. J. Contractor and P. Lorange (eds.), Cooperative Strategies in International Business (New York: Lexington Books), 55-67. [10.] Lorange, P., Roos, J. (1992), Strategic Alliances: Formation, Implementation and Evolution, Oxford: Blackwell [11.] Lorange, P., Bronn, P. S. (1992), 'Building Successful Strategic Alliances', Long Range Planning, 25:10-17. [12.] Mohrr, J., Spekman, R. (1994), 'Characteristics of Partnership Success: Partnership Attributes, Communication Behaviour, and Conflict Resolution Techniques', Strategic Management Journal, 15:135-52. [13.] Morre, J. F. (1996), The Death of Competition: Leadership and Strategy in the Age of Business Ecosystems, Chichester: Wiley [14.] Murray, E. A., JR., Mahon, J. F. (1993), 'Strategic Alliances: Gateway to the New Europe?', Long Range Planning, 26:102-11. [15.] Ohmae, K. (1989), 'The Global Logic of Strategic Alliances', Harvard Business Review, Mar.-Apr., 143-54.
[16.] Parkhe, A. (1993), 'Messy Research, Methodological Predispositions, and Theory Development in International Joint Ventures', Academy of Management Review, 18: 227-68. [17.] Porter, M. E. (1980), Competitive Strategy, New York, The Free Press [18.] Porter, M. E. (1985), Competitive Advantage, New York: The Free Press [19.] 18. Porter, M. E. (1996), 'What is Strategy?' Harvard Business Review, 61-78. [20.] 19. Singh K. and Mitchell, W. (1996), 'Precarious Collaborations: Business Survival after Partners Shut Down or Form New Partnerships', Strategic Management Journal , 17:99-116.
ONLINE MARKETING STRATEGIES USING ORGANIZATIONAL BLOGS Professor Gheorghe ORZAN, Ph. D, The Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies, firstname.lastname@example.org
Junior Teaching Assistant Ivona STOICA, PhD Candidate, The Romanian American University, email@example.com
Assistant Mihai ORZAN, Ph. D, The Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies, firstname.lastname@example.org Being a consumer, buyer, or a user of any product and service, it is a good feeling to share what you have experienced of using these things, either the outcomes were bad or good. 3 Abstract Organizations which until 2009 were profitable in 2010, profits have fallen considerably, making firms to turn increasingly towards more virtual environment. The Internet has become nowadays the best way to increase profit due to limited costs, reduced time, especially due to firm-customer interactivity is growing considerably. In the information society in which we live, the need for communication arises from the customer's desire to save money and time because of our age customers are always connected people to information, for which services are offered in digital ways always advantageous and convenient. So companies adapt to market dynamics, using pulltype strategies, which helps develop the competitive environment forcing companies to offer products and services at high standards. Keywords: Internet, online marketing, organizational blogs, online strategies. History blogs Philip Kotler believes that marketing is ”a social and managerial process by which individuals and groups obtain what they want and need through creating, offering, and exchanging products of value with others”4. A blog (or "web log") is a website, usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of reviews, descriptions of events, or other materials, such as graphics or video, and because the notes are ordered chronologically he now wears the name and online journal. Blogs include comments ordered reverse chronologically, newest entries (posts) are present on the first page. Blogosphere is the collective community of all blogs.
http://reymos.wordpress.com/about/my-consumer-sites/ Ph.Kotler – Marketing Management, (2nd edition), Teora Publishing House, Bucharest, 2000, p.22
"An entry (post) is made mandatory in the title, text, publication date, URL, and contains, optionally, photos, audio, video and links to, information from other sites or blogs. Each entry is stored on an individual page in an archive of topics and can be accessed anytime through a single Internet address. Blogs can be individual creations can be the sum of the contributions of several persons. Blogging is a tool like Web 2.0 and social media. Web 2.0 is actually an indirect marketing tool which can easily reach the minds of consumers to form opinions and comments. Electronic journal or blog is a tool through which everyone has something to say can write articles may be freely express, which in addition has the right advantage to an opinion that is easily searchable and especially one that is supported by advanced online publication. Blogs are interactive websites that post its author more or less regularly, which may have links to other websites or blogs and, last but not least, allow visitors to interact with the blog author or other visitors through comments which may or may not be moderated by the blog owner. Depending on the topic, they can be grouped into specific communities, guided by a set of rules and regulations. Blogging is a form of synchronous online communication type allowing posting comments on the articles in real time. Thus anyone can publish, because the blog actually creates a virtual community, a dynamic environment conducive to exposure of ideas. Using blog possession of knowledge does not require web design very large due to the variety of settlement and leaving room for creativity cross correlation images with text in a custom combination of preferences after blogger. Such a blog can easily build virtual service providers due to type a blog that provides easy and intuitive to create wealth not only take a few minutes. Among the best known providers of blogs include: Wordpress.com, one of the most popular blog hosting providers that offer free service and can build more blogs on the same account; -Blogger.com (blogspot.com) - it offers the possibility to use the blogger platform for their own field and show the great advantage is that it is a Google service, which means that the blog created will certainly appear among search results the Google engine; Among first-weblog.ro-blogging services in Romania; -Ablog.ro - powerful customization allows complete control over your blog template. Technorati there is also seeking a SEO blogs and compete with Google and Yahoo. Until recently they were used only for personal blogs personal statement of views, from a desire to communicate with others and sharing common topics of interest. The blogs are distinguished several types such as independent blogs, standalone social networks, ecommerce sites and media, microblogging (Twitter). Penetration per capita is U.S. online most of any nation in the world according to Internet World Stats. About 251.3 million Americans are online or 74.4% of the total population of the country. Blogs (professional, technical, personal or any other) is one of the trends in the online world and should be considered important components of a virtual community. Using blogs in Romania According to a study by ZeList Monitor, Service Monitoring and analysis of blogosphere, Twittosphere and online media, the number of blogs in Romania increased by
2.6 times in the last two years (October 2008 - September 2010), from 22,484 to 59,017 blogs. April 2010 was the month in which almost half (45%) of all blogs have published at least one post. April 2010 is the best month of the last two years in terms of percentage of active blogs. In the last 22 months (December 2008 - September 2010), active blogs have published an average of 12 stations each month. In December 2009, saw the most comments published in a single month of the study period: December 2008 - September 2010. Their number was 300,601. December 2009 is the only month in the last 22 months (December 2008 - September 2010) when the number exceeded the threshold of 300,000 comments. In the last 22 months (December 2008 - September 2010) an active blog posted an average of 13 comments.Romanian blogosphere has expanded considerably (2.6 times) in October 2008 to September 2010. In October 2008, reported 22,484 Zelist.ro the Romanian's blogs online. Two years later, in September 2010, the number had grown to 59,017 blogs.
Chart 1: An evolution of blogs in Romania (2008-2010) Most intensive on blogs in 2010, was registered in September, 45% of all blogs, their number reaching considerable amount of 59.017, while the worst period in terms of activity was In April 2010, with 43,823 blogs. The active blog blog means that published at least one post in that month. The best months of 2009, in terms of active blogs reported the total number of blogs was in January when 42% of blogs were active. The worst months of 2009 in terms of percentage of active blogs, it was October, when the total percentage of active blogs in existing blog that month was 29.9%.
Chart 2: Internet users in the world by World Regions disrtibution â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 2010
Online marketing strategies using blogs It is very important presence of companies using blogs. Blogs can be used as a tool "echo" of the consumer voice, which spreads in the minds of readers of blogs and especially in their hearts. So a brand may create a positive image by updating offers, news with a blog, also feedback is very important because the organization can make a bloggers comments analysis weaknesses and opportunities but not yet were exploited. Along with these opinions and suggestions appear public target could later be converted into real strategies. Blog instigate and involvement of both parties, since the target audience is not this rich information resource that provides a real mine of data to be operated on the extent of its importance. According to online blog marketing strategies marketers should consider some important points: 1.Setting the goals blog. Defining the most important objectives that must be whose core consumer. 2. Identification of "commentators", more exactly of public blog now. It is very important the target audience identify because with it we can proceed to better define the needs and expectations of customers and potential owners. 3. Determining the most effective communication channels The communication channels must be established most efficiently but also other digital solutions that could lead to a better connection to our clients, to the products and services of the highest quality. It is necessary that the firm to adopt both offline and online chanells because using a strategic combination of integrated media is key to success in any business. 4. The importance of content The content must be attractive and still affordable. It is the most important section and must contain the reasons for which customers should support the brand, know the values that must fight and perhaps to come in defense arguments against contrary views. Basically here must be found and the key messages that will have a special contribution to sales growth. Here, it is imperative for the emergence of competitive advantage, namely the highlighting of what makes products or services from a great distance to differentiate from the competition. The content can lead to the question of target audience in the digital environment feeling at ease in an intimate setting helps to express their opinions with an open heart because the digital environment without disturbance flexibiltate offer in terms of time, messages can be posted at any time of day or night, very low cost, and a lot of connections that can develop with this social network environment. 5. Conversation When communicating via a company blog by its employees, gain confidence because the target audience of the communication target publiclui attachment arises. Story ptea company will be shared in some way if the other was told it was strong enough to be heard and here is the so-called marketing "mouth to mouth." 6. Commitment to customers Commitment is essential, and comes fully all aspects of business profitability because it represents the enterprise guarantee that the promise is fulfilled and trust is won. 7. Control and assay data It is necessary to conduct an analysis of data collected, monitoring customers participating, comments and practical recording of the entire business exposed. The decision-making
process must be taken into account the "voices" that reveals nevoiel consumers and their expectations. At the same time following the decisions taken in accordance with feedback provided by customers, the company gets to win and more than their hearts, and with it will increase brand notoritatea and profits. Whatever product or sericiul blog is part of marketing strategy. This environment provides a rapid increase brand reputation because the right to reply that it is a brand from criticism by a negative consumator.Feedback site posted on a blog, besides being an act consumer involvement and if the reply is constructive and even confirm, a customer can get angry at worst defender.
Fig 1: Digital Strategy Process5 There is a downside, namely that any disgruntled employee was launching his blog paote defamation of our brand, which is why it is important that employee satisfaction is on the same level and treated as seriously as consumer satisfaction. Involvement of other bloggers by commenting on key business issues by reading the blogs about your product or company to understand the perspective of the blogger and the audience. Liability by comments from other reviews is a very important strategy that causes the audience to dialogue. This strategy comes to be more powerful and striking, this approach can help, and negative exposures strained argument on purpose. The use of advertising on blogs to influence the target audience reach, niche audiences can easily lead to peaks purchases. Although only about 25% of Internet users (about 32 million) currently read blogs, they tend to influence the thinking of others. Readers Bloglines check about 20 blogs daily. An exploratory research conducted by BlogAds exposes readers to blogs that they are large consumers of content, well-paid specialist, preferring subscriptions to The Economist and The New Yorker. Blogs vary in size, approach, and ad opportunities. You can advertise directly on a blog that reaches the target market or through an advertising network like Pheedo and BlogAds. With all these elements present on a blog and comments must be contextually relevant. 5
To avoid boredom on the company blog can add various blogs organizational employment or even CEO's blog. These blogs need maximum transparency and more organizational support from the legal departments, public relations and above the top management. Building a business or a brand is made only by connecting to consumers. Both small businesses and major corporations can use blogs to build closer relationships with their customers. Best Buy has created Slothmore Entertainment Institute. Best Buy is only about ads. The analysis is very important whether you have a blog related to analysis is important to track how the business and brand are discussed to better understand your consumer perspective. There are also crucial instruments, such as IntelliSeek or BuzzMetrics BlogPulse. This analysis will help determine who you are and which influence the level of business connectivity to the target audience.
Fig. 2: Digital Marketing Radar 6 Consumers can discuss products in general terms, without using brand names or model numbers. Landscape monitoring information to determine macroeconomic trends and problems faced by buyers and the language it uses. Conclusions Regarding the professional blogosphere, you have to draw attention to the fact that membership in it, involve a number of advantages that you should blog author know. One of the first networking advantages because it presents such a community can open many doors to other professionals in various specialty areas, but also by companies seeking such professionals. Safety and decision with the personalization context and clarity of speech comments. A simple mistake that can sneak in comments can be viewed negatively by other members of the community will not miss the opportunity to make "corrections" and this can lead to damage to the image.
Creating a personal brand by taking advantage of a strong brand calit$!ilor.Construirea staff on the basis of relevant views in turn will help the outstanding part of the community organization. Brand awarness comes automatically with the number of visitors and in particular the large number of comments and questions on the blog launched. Higher rating is difficult, but everything depends on the strength and experience held within the area of specialization and particular views of how exposure. Keeping busy commentators on the blog requires not only especially orginalitatea postings by providing feedback by answering visitors' comments. Originality and authenticity of the names appear with the creation of a community that belongs to an organizational blog bringing into question the current topics and strong and because they tend to debate the first blogger to get a true promoter constituting itself into a big trump in terms of increasing interest. In conclusion, blogs are online marketing tools that create strategic opportunities and challenges at the same time. As in any communication strategy must take into account the expectations and achievements of both parties. The blog is not a strategic asset that must be treated with ignorance because most consumers are in front of our Ziel coputerului. Blogs should be treated as tools of listening and involving customers. People comment about companies, brands, products and services or even yourself in the blogosphere and is useful possibility to influence the conversation. Online marketing is ”using the power of online networks, computer communications, and digital interactive media to reach your marketing objectives.”7 E-marketing is actually ”creating and maintaining customer relations by means of online activities such as exchanging ideas, products, and services to meet the needs of both parties.”8 References: [1.] Orzan, Gh., (2001), Sisteme informatice de marketing, Uranus Publishing House, Bucharest; [2.] Orzan, G., Orzan, M., (2007), Cybermarketing, Uranus Publishing House, Bucharest; [3.] Ph.Kotler, K. L. Keller, (2009), Managementul marketingului, Edi!ia a 13-a, Pearson Prentice Hall Publishing House, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey; [4.] Len Keeler, (1995), Cybermarketing, AMACO Publishing House, New York; [5.] J.Imber- Dictionary of marketing terms; [6.] http://www.smartinsights.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/Digital-MarketingRadar-SmartInsight-2010.png; [7.] 7.http://www.google.ro/imgres?imgurl=http://thememphisagency.files.wordpress.co m/2010/08/digitalstrategyprocess-blog [8.] http://www.emarketer.com/Report.aspx?code=emarketer_2000574, February, 2009; [9.] http://www.tehnopol.ro. [10.] http://www.internetworldstats.com/europa.htm#ro [11.] http://www.zelist.ro/
Len Keeler – Cybermarketing, AMACO Publishing House, New York, 1995 J.Imber- Dictionary of Marketing Terms
MANAGEMENT OF INFORMATION Professor Neculae N!BÂRJOIU PhD., Romanian-American University, 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest
email@example.com Motto: „It takes man two years to learn how to talk and a lifetime to learn when to shut up”. Confucius9 Abstract: The new stage of the economy’s development, especially of the industry, changes fundamentally the society’s structure. The transition from the industrial society to a new type of society focused on individualization is in place. The concept of information becomes crucial for the information society and economy. Going deeper and examining what happens in the “new economy”, based on the Internet, we find out that the substance of the new society is communication, therefore the exchange of information between partners, an exchange resulting in new information and new values, either cultural or economic. Keywords: management, information, communication 1. Why the “Management of Information”? The transition towards an information society, the appetence of the society for credible information and the speed of processing and transferring this information (according to certain sources, there are periods when the speed doubles every 6 months) require performing operations on a huge volume of information, an effort which calls for the implication of experienced people and the usage of specialized equipment. The new stage of the economy’s development, especially of the industry, changes fundamentally the society’s structure. The transition from the industrial society to a new type of society focused on individualization is in place. The concept of information becomes crucial for the information society and economy. Going deeper and examining what happens in the “new economy”, based on the Internet, we find out that the substance of the new society is communication, therefore the exchange of information between partners, an exchange resulting in new information and new values, either cultural or economic. Hence, more important than running an advertisement on the web site is the interaction between the supplier and the customer and the latter’s participation in defining the market and the product. The development of the contemporary society towards the information society 9
The Latinized name of the Chinese philosopher Kong Fuzi (551 – 479 B.C.), preacher of a morale that urged man on virtue and perfection. He was sanctified. For two millenniums his doctrine was the official religion in China.
and, almost simultaneously, to the knowledge-based society, imposes a real information warfare, for power, for being the best. The complexity, the importance and the consequences of using information in the decision-making process entail its compliance with all the requirements of a modern management, because only this way, the information keeps its quality of strategic operability. Otherwise, the incertitude in decision-making would worsen and could lead to their incorrect implementation with hardly foreseeable consequences. Under these circumstances, the management of information, i.e. the generation, control, dissemination and use of information and especially its security is no more just a vector of knowledge and anticipation but also a very efficient weapon. Thus, the information and the information systems become now and especially in the future, a political, military and economic stake, once the worst battle, the battle for information, communication, obstruction or misleading, has been started and fought. When appreciating the value of information one has to take into account several elements whose congruence may significantly raise or lower the efficiency of the management: • decisional and competitive relevance of information; • cost of obtaining and processing the information; • level of confidentiality and dissimulation; • capability of using and reusing the information; • ratio between the necessity to dissimulate the information and the obligation to protect it. Being at the same time an objective and a weapon, the information is a continuous target for the business entities when developing their activities within a business environment and also a very efficient element for its holders. Those who hold the information also hold the power and, obviously, the ability to influence the course of events to their own advantage. At the same time, the holder of information may obstruct or forbid the competitors’ access to it and may mislead them in the decision-making process. He may alter the process of collecting, processing, storing and disseminating information. Through all these means, the information holder ensures his supremacy that is the increase of operability in action. Thus, his act of surprising will be higher while the objective’s awareness of the attack is lower. Consequently, in order to become an information holder and to prevent information attacks, the direct effect of the information weapon, the following core elements of organization, action and behaviour are necessary: • the organization means measures for collecting, processing, storing and disseminating information related to activities on one hand, and measures for the security of information and for counteracting information attacks, on the other hand; • the action envisages monitoring certain indicators, threats or acts, and counteracting constant attacks on own information and image; • the organizations’ behaviour shall be predominantly proactive and, as much as necessary, reactive; proactive behaviour refers to both defensive and offensive / attack action within the limits provided by the ethics and legality of the business. In the information field, the confrontation takes place at the same intensity as the state of war; therefore the phrase information warfare in the economic area does not surprise anybody.
Competition starts from information, develops around information, but implies information processing, knowledge, decision, management, action and result. The new technical and scientific achievements have generated a shifting in thought by returning, paradoxically, to Aristotle’s philosophic concept uttered more than 300 years before Christ, in his lectures on logics, philosophy, nature’s sciences, meteorology, astronomy, on substance and movement. What we know in the universe is substance and form, and the substance is made of lumatia (support substance set going by information) and inform-substance, the latter being, “an information substance where information shows itself firstly phenomenologically…” according to the Greek philosopher’s statement. Information is data and knowledge necessary to the decision-maker in order to act profitably and with full knowledge of the case and which helps him (whether he is a manager, a military commander, a policy-maker) make a decision. Thus, one can speak about political, economic, scientific, military or geographic, strategic or operative, internal or external, secret or non-secret information. The management of information, the obtaining, holding and usage of information required the limitation (restriction) of the citizens’ liberties and rights by means of certain types of measures which impose a correct delimitation, an example being the special measures regarding the access to classified information. 2. Management of information security If 6000 years ago in Mesopotamia one spoke about protecting information against disclosure, it is obvious that such a concept was born at the same time with the conscious existence on Earth. “Ever since the emergence of life on Earth, the beings needed food and information”10. Over the last years, the need of security for all categories of information and, especially, for the security of the systems transporting and automatically processing it has increased. The technological progress is maybe the most important element which occurs in establishing the security policies of the information and, consequently, the level of trust in the security systems. The processing of an even greater volume of information calls for the unique solution of resorting to the information technologies materialized in computer and communication networks. At the same time, taking account of the prejudices that the dissemination of certain information may cause, a restriction of access to such information is mandatory. The policy of information security shall reach the best compromise by assuming the risks derived from this option. The accession to NATO and EU has changed the attitude as regards the security of classified information and even concerning unclassified information which is not publicreleased. This is the reason why higher attention should be paid to the security of information, firstly by ensuring its correct classification and also by working out coherent strategies for securing the area where such information is circulated. Management of information security generally means developing and adopting the measures required for ensuring the information security in view of eliminating any risk of 10
Conf. univ. dr. ing. Marian Rizea „Informa!ie, protec!ie, libertate 'i securitate”, (Information, Protection, Freedom and Security) Monitorul de petrol 'i gaze, Bucure'ti nr.1, Editura SIPG, 2006.
compromise. Management of classified information can be carried out at professional level only within a very well-adjusted system, coordinated by the national security authority, and made up of all the authorized/designated security authorities and of all the security structures functioning within public or private entities holding classified information and under the managers’ leadership. Actually, we are in a position to highlight the increased interest of private companies to establish security structures able to protect classified information and their solid actions to enhance the security education level of the designated personnel. The concept regarding the management of information has improved lately with the implementation, under various forms, of the principles of a genuine security education. The conceptual progress achieved by Romania’s accession to NATO and EU is directly linked to the establishment of entities which apply to the Romanian character the concepts that have already become rules in the structures and countries with democratic traditions and with notable performance in the fields that proficiently use information. The National Registry Office for Classified Information was set up, as national security authority, specific attributions were defined inside competent security authorities and, most important, special structures for the management of classified information were established within ministries, organizations and companies. One also records a change of attitude, meaning an increase of the leaders’ responsibility with respect to obtaining, keeping, controlled dissemination, transportation and use of classified information. And it could not be otherwise since NATO, EU or the countries, with which Romania has concluded security agreements, do not admit halfmeasures when classified information security is implied. 3. Master in „Management of information” within the Faculty of Management - Marketing Starting from the idea that information can provide protection and security for the human society, we have identified the supplemental necessity for university training in this field, which should cover a much-desired, widely-spoken about area, indispensable to performance. Since the last academic year, 2010 – 2011, we have promoted within the Romanian-American University, Faculty of Management - Marketing, a training program finalized with a master’s degree entitled “Management of information”. For the time being, 49 alumni have attended this Program. They come from various faculties such as: science, economic, management, marketing, international relations, military science and intelligence, law, public administration, communication and public relations, foreign languages, polytechnics etc., or are graduates of other master’s degree programs, of postuniversity courses organized by the Romanian Diplomatic Institute, or are candidates for doctor’s degree and even doctors in science. They all came to confirm and develop the performance they obtained at a certain moment in the management of information. Therefore, any young person or experienced graduate wishing to reach top management or to attain performance at any rate and in a short period of time may apply to this program. The master’s degree that the Faculty of Management - Marketing and the author of this article puts forward for consideration is sustained by the legislation in force and complies with the present expertise in organizing the transfer of information being consistent with the North Atlantic Alliance and European Union working standards The experience gained in the practical training together with the stringent need for specialization in a field of utmost interest, that of information security, made possible the
initiation of this master’s degree, the presentation of the best achievements, at world level, whether it is about the American management pattern, the German anti-corruption pattern, the Swedish public administration pattern etc., the data and opinions expected by many categories of persons from the elevated environments of the Romanian society. Our aim is to make the students, the master’s degree or doctor’s degree candidates receptive to a professional approach of the management of information necessary in any field of activity. This Program consists of two modules of Management of Information, Information and Security, respectively, Classified Information. The areas of study associated to these modules are: Geopolitics; Geostrategy and Security; Risk Management; Cyber Security; Security Doctrines and Policies; Security of the Information Holder; Management of Crises and Conflicts; Mediation of Crises and Conflicts; Management of Economic Diplomacy; Leadership; Project Management; Marketing Management; Management of Information Systems; Ethics of the Security Education; Management of Security Breaches and other optional projects. There is often a tendency to make equal the transmission of information with the transmission of knowledge. A piece of information can be transmitted as a sequence of data, or simply as a message, an item of news, a statement restricted to defining an event, an object etc. The transmitter and the receiver of the information do not need to be compatible as regards the educational and training level, while the transmission of knowledge, preponderantly carried out within our Program, requires especially compatibility between the communicators and it means added personality and experience, even intervention of the cognitive on the events. The main ideas of such an approach come from the fact that we are living in a genuine information era and in authentic information warfare. In order to win, we have to be prepared to prudently use the information. To prepare our master’s degree candidates to fulfill the various positions implying usage of information, we have highlighted new methods for a more efficient rendering of the activity by employing the power of information before the financial power or, even more, before applying to physical force. Conclusion: Management of information is very important in attaining performance. When it comes to classified information, the interest and the attention paid are in exponential growth. As in all the other fields, information has become a dominant element within the business environment, and also a cornerstone of value – a true business foundation. Within the economic competition there is a statement according to which the individual who does not hold information cannot stand on the market and cannot compete with other challengers, being foredoomed to failure from the very beginning. This takes effect in the organization’s capability to obtain, to process and turn to good account, soon enough, the information both by fundamental decisions and as object of commercial transaction. It all depends on people, on the manner and purpose to which they manage information and apply the ethics of information management. It remains to be seen whether the information regarding various potential destabilizations, from different reasons, and which is at the decidents’ disposition will offer more security in the future, enough freedom to the citizens and a more solid regional and global security. We would like to believe that the training program for the master’s degree in the “Management of Information” will contribute to training competent managers, real
winners, who will provide maximum satisfaction to the organizations they will work in. The original approaches will turn into a necessary university and professional consulting instrument, definitely improving the managerial praxis. A manager of the future has to have “Security Culture”11 meaning values, norms, attitudes or actions that determine the understanding and assimilation of the security concept and of the other derived concepts: national security, international security, collective security, insecurity, cooperative security, security policy etc., to which we will come back. References: [1.] National Defence Strategy, (2010), For Romania that guarantees the security and prosperity of the next generations, Romanian Presidency [2.] Daniel Bell, The post-industrial society from a historical perspective [3.] Confucius or Kong Fuzi (551 î.Hr. – 479 î.Hr.), Citate celebre.com; [Famous quotations.com] [4.] George Friedman, founder of Stratfor, (2010), Romania must learn to be dangerous in order to exist.., interview by Anne-Marie Blajan, HotNews.ro [5.] Marius Petrescu, Neculae N$bârjoiu, Management of Information, vol 1, Information and Security [6.] Marius Petrescu, Neculae N$bârjoiu, Mioara Braboveanu,Management of Information, vol 2, Classified Information [7.] Marian Rizea, Information, Protection, Freedom and Security, Bucharest no.1
Strategia Na!ional$ de Ap$rare, (National Defence Strategy) Pre'edin!ia României, 2010
BETWEN HOPE AND REALITY – THE ROLE OF ROMANIAN UNIVERSITIES IN THE STUDENT – EMPLOYER RELATIONSHIP Lecturer Costel Negricea Ph.D Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest firstname.lastname@example.org,
Associate Professor Nicoleta Dumitru, Ph.D Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest email@example.com
Lecturer Tudor Edu, Ph.D Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest firstname.lastname@example.org
Abstract: Besides the light of knowledge, the academic environment can provide continuity and value to a society that strives to make its way through economic and social difficulties. Starting from the individual needs, the University can lay the sound basis for a harmonious development of all society’s structures. This article is intended to present a realistic analysis of the characteristics of the relationship university-student-organisation in Romania. Also, we seek to identify the major measures that need to be developed and implemented within the Romanian Universities and organisations, with direct effect on qualitative education of young people and their smooth integration on the labor market. Key words: University, student, employer, professional skills, cooperation. Introduction More than ever, the present time implies increased transformation efforts towards a more efficient organisation activity, towards re-thinking and development of a new structure for the business environment. It is a business environment where each component changes in search of balance, by dynamism and competitiveness. Not only the business environment changes, but also the entire society, through social unrest, mistrust, pessimism, restrictions, worries, and also the hope of a better social and economic environment. There are various opinions and recommendations concerning the measures to be adopted for overcoming the present economic difficulties and ensuring continuity despite an unstable and sometimes turbulent environment. These are good recommendations, but difficult to implement for a person that lacks vision. We do not intend, in this article, to set directions that would definitely solve the difficulties of the Romanian organisations. It would be a waste of paper and ink, as there are thousands of articles of this kind. We would only draw the attention on some potential steps, that are specific to any beginning, in view of developing a sustainable business environment. We refer here to the educational
system, the particular characteristics of the Romanian academic environment, the involvement of the business environment into establishing an educational value creation pattern. We refer to the young people and the hope of this society and this economy. 1. Educational Marketing – how to conceive the young people’s development in accordance with their needs and society’s expectations During the marketing courses, the student adopts the vision of the customeroriented organisation. This is based on a thorough knowledge of marketing environment components and the development of specific activities adapted to customer needs, through favorable experience and value creation interactions. The creation of an organisational, market-oriented vision requires time and sustainable acceptance and implementation efforts. Envisaging and occupying a position on the market is a complex process that depends, generally speaking, on the organisation strategy on the one hand, and its operationalization on the other hand. In both cases, the human resource represents one of the major influence factors of an organisation’s activity on the market, to the satisfaction of the final consumer. Irrespective of the field of activity, the human resource is one of most valuable goods of an organisation. The increase of economic competitiveness and productivity can be achieved by qualitative improvement of the human resources, knowledge and skills provided by the educational system. Training and experience represent two of the characteristics that make the qualitative difference among the personnel of an organisation. Following the analysis of the two components, we have come to these conclusions: training represents the complex knowledge acquired by learning, that helps the individual act with full knowledge of the case, in a specific field; experience can be understood as a set of feelings and situations modeled by the training and structure of the individual, within a specific context. Both the learning process (which is also known as educational process) and the experience are longterm processes to which the employer may contribute or not at a certain point. This involvement becomes expensive for the organisation; it is not always a positive process, as it implies risks related to the quality of recruited individual and capitalisation of his services in time (the continuous search for a better paid job is one of the characteristics of the labor market, especially with regard to young people). Training, seen as acquisition of knowledge in a specific field, is a long-term process which doesn’t trigger the involvement of the organisation. The educational system provides the opportunity of developing knowledge and skills in specific domains and profiles. The education goes from general to particular, and can continue with diploma licence, Master degree and PhD as accomplishments of the individual training. The high standard training of an individual requires a deep understanding of the Romanian social reality and labor market from the educational institutions. The learning and training process continues beyond the educational system, in the business or institutional environment, during the entire lifetime, and determines various educational and training stages of the individual. It is to mention that a well structured educational system, anchored into the reality of the national and international economy, represents a step forward in reducing inequality or social marginalisation of the individual. The employee’s experience is acquired in time, based on the individual’s training and structure, and implies efforts from the organisation. The professional accomplishment of the individual (and also his accomplishment as a human being, issue that shall be approached later on, at a certain moment), is a long-term process that involves several stages, and integrated actions of the educational, business and/or institutional environment.
In view of increasing its efficiency, the organisation has to reconsider its relationship with the providers of labor force, which is a component of an organisation’s marketing micro-environment. The relationship between the organisation on one hand and Universities, vocational schools, qualification and re-qualification agencies on the other hand can provide advantages to both sides, and also to the subject of the relationship – the student, pupil, individual under re-qualification process. The organisation may benefit from recruiting vocational young people, that are easy to train and integrate into the organisation’s policy and market activity; this will determine an increase of customer satisfaction, organisation’s productivity and efficiency. The training institution can get the advantage of an educational activity orientated toward the labor market needs and even more, the subsequent satisfaction of the student. 2. The role of higher education institution in difficult times The role of the educational institutions goes beyond the creation of experts in specific fields; it aims at providing persons of character, and integrating them into the economic and social environment. A society that lacks such people is lost. Thus, training of an individual is a high complexity process that has further decisive implications, where the educational institution has to assume responsibility. The economic difficulties bring new challenges to the academic environment. In general, on a dynamic market characterised by economic and social problems, the major part of population will be in difficulty, but the young graduates will be affected the most. The fact is that many answers they search for are beyond the academic environment, deeply anchored into the more or less visible realities of the Romanian social and economic life. The system of values may be modified in difficult times, and the same may happen with young people’s behavior and aspirations. In the context of responsibility assumption, the training institution has to create and implement a sound training system that would train the young people up to the expert level and connect them to the reality of the social and economic environment. Within the higher education institutions there are career orientation centers, whose role are to facilitate the competence-based interaction between the student / postgraduate student and the organisation. The curricula are adapted to the specific markets; they provide practical training workshops, where the student gets into contact with the reality of the environment that he would like to work in. Also, there are various EU financed programs which have in view the identification and development of the necessary framework, in order to concertize the actions of the educational environment and organisational employer. However, the process is quite critical in Romania. 3. The relationship university – organisation; two partners with different ways In the academic environment there are many situations showing that the relationship with the business environment is still timid. Within the Universities, there are rather few programs where the student or the Master degree student can get in touch with the business or institutional environment. There may be only a few large organisations, with a well defined staff policy, that develop such programs in cooperation with some higher education institutions. Nevertheless, the attempt to identify solutions for a better interaction of the two environments may easily lead to failure. The causes could be the lack of academic organisation in this respect, the expectations of invitees who lectured in front of the students, the expectations of their organisations, or simply the targeted public – the
student, his interest for these meetings or the feed-back provided to the organisation, although there are common interests. The student’s training for the labor market is a complex process that requires the Universities to know the complex reality of the labor market, by domains and profiles. The real expert in the business environment is the organisation itself. It would be interesting to know how many educational programs, university plans and analytical programs have been issued in Romania with the collaboration of the business environment. Thus, we can understand why there are differences between the University and business environment representatives. The University staff complain about the non-involvement of the business environment, while the latter complains about the results of the educational system. Not long ago, one of the projects intended to create a standard for the qualifications of a marketing graduate, attracted famous Romanian University centers. The projects include all licence study profiles and shall continue probably with the Master and PhD studies. The purpose of the meeting was the creation of a partnership that would comprise the actors of the educational market and the labor market, in order to debate the qualifications required from a marketing graduate. Finally, a grid was elaborated, comprising six professional competences and their description. As mentioned before, the debate’s framework was supposed to bring together educational institutions and specialised organisations, in order to create a standard concerning a marketing graduate’s competences. It was surprising to find out that the labor market was represented at the meeting by a single person. The conclusion is clear: the business environment’s interest in the future worker’s competences is very low. Under these conditions, we wonder whether three years of student’s training, three years of financial effort made by the community or the student’s family, of re-thinking and adaptation of the University curricula, will lead to the competences required by the organisation’s needs on the market. The answer will come in a few years, from the labor market directly. And unfortunately this will have a negative effect on work productivity, public and private financial resources. Table 1. Percentage of employers having difficulty filling jobs, due to manpower’s lack of skills (%)
Poland Romania Austria Switzerland Italy Hungary Germany Greece Belgium France Czech Republic Sweden Netherlands South Africa Spain
2010 51 36 35 35 31 30 29 29 27 23 19 18 17 16 15
2009 48 62 28 36 26 35 37 19 18 17 29 19 35 8
2008 49 73 44 36 18 34 47 26 31 37 39 15 38 27
Norway 11 19 40 United Kingdom 9 11 12 Ireland 4 5 14 Source: 2010 Talent Shortage Survey Results, Manpower The weak cooperation between Universities and labor market representatives, and the lack of vision of both parties may be the answer to the imbalances on the Romanian labor market. According to the survey â&#x20AC;&#x17E;2010 Talent Shortage Survey Resultsâ&#x20AC;? carried out by Manpower, Romania occupies, in 2010 the 13th place at world level, out of 36 countries surveyed (along with Costa Rica and Guatemala), and the 2nd place in the region Europe/Middle East/Africa (EMEA), regarding the recruitment of the adequate/ qualified manpower for the jobs offered by employers. As compared to 2009, when it ranked the first, Romania has dropped 26 percent, which shows a positive evolution of labor market characteristics in the last year. Despite this favorable evolution, Romania occupies an undesirable 2nd place among the 17 European countries surveyed. According to the same survey, the jobs most difficult to fill in are: Engineers, Skilled Trade, Sales Representative, Management/ Executives, Production Operators, Laborers, IT Staff, Restaurants & Hotel Staff, Accounting & Finance Staff. 4. The evolution of the Romanian educational environment by principles, continuity and value As our field of competence is marketing, the approaches in this article may sometimes come from this field. But, as an orientation of the modern organisations, marketing is not or shouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be anymore an activity belonging strictly to the marketing department. The marketing vision should include the entire organisation, as each employee represents a wheel in the value- providing mechanism to the final consumer. We have seen that the business environment has a rather low involvement into the development of the educational system and manpower training. Therefore, we will analyse below some measures that the Universities should assume in order to provide valuable graduates on the labor market. Although sometimes the approach is reduced to the marketing profile, which is the profile of the authors, it can be extended easily to other profiles. For several years, the Romanian education has been going through a continuous process of structure and content adaptation to the requirements of the European education system. At the same time, the University staff has the role to implement this new educational strategy through various teaching methods, and raise the professional performance quality level. One of the deficiencies of the Romanian educational system is the lack of dynamism. Before and after the EU accession, Romania made great efforts to comply with the EU standards in all fields, including education. However, the educational system cannot evolve and change without the evolution of the human resource involved in the process. Thus, the adaptation continues at various rates, depending on profiles and fields of activity. On the other hand, the experience of the past years revealed that the labor market and the market needs evolve much faster than the adaptation of the educational system. This phenomenon creates discrepancies and requires time and adjustments, in the same way as the formation of the balance price on a market. Thus, it is to be noticed that there are numerous graduates working in a different field as their educational profile. They had to make vocational reorientation efforts in order to occupy the available positions on the
market at that moment; despite the society and family efforts for completion of some studies that are now part of the individual’s general culture. Among all components involved into the evolution of the educational system, it seems that the student adapted best to these changes; therefore, there are higher demands concerning quality of the teaching process. The students prefer interactive courses, where the theory is explained with examples from the Romanian market; and the new educational methods are regarded as elements that improve the educational process quality. The student-professor communication evolves by including new, up-to-date communication means, particularly online tools. These evolution elements cannot be overlooked, as the final goal of the University is the student’s satisfaction. All the issues discussed in this article are meant to help the University achieve this goal. The practical skills development by the student in the respective profile should be organised in accordance with the needs transmitted by the business environment. It is necessary to develop integrated, modern University study programs, that are constantly updated to the labor market requirements, in the context of the knowledge-based society. Also, the educational process has to be compliant with the specialised vocational and occupational standards at European and international levels. The academic environment should identify the optimum methods for developing the cooperation with the business environment. These efforts may result in the development of training bases, parallel development of research/studies, elaboration of study programs and curricula in cooperation with the business environment, elaboration of teaching materials, etc. Training of the future economists includes the development of partnerships between Universities or Faculties and the business environment, in view of developing joint training programs-JTP. These bases JTPs are intended for internship, where the student gets into contact with the reality of his educational profile. The organisations can be involved in supporting the academic performance through financing student projects, merit grants, job proposals for remarkable students, establishment of laboratories/centers for student’s needs and capitalisation of knowledge by practical activities that are specific to the marketing domain. We have shown that the measures concerning the University-business environment cooperation include the initiation of joint applicative research projects. In this respect, the main problem is the financial support of the research. Here are the alternatives: encourage the companies to seek collaboration with the University for financial reasons, as the tariffs are lower than the specialised companies’ prices; performance of direct research, that could be published partially in the University’s magazine, in view of awakening the interest of the business environment etc.. According to the EACEA12 survey, New Skills for New Jobs Policy initiatives in the field of education: Short overview of the current situation in Europe, published in December 2010, in Romania, at the end of 2010 there were three projects aimed at monitoring the school-to-work transition of young people. One of these projects focuses on the school-to-work transition of 20 000 university graduates and is being implemented by a central government authority (the Executive Unit for Financing Higher Education and University Scientific Research). The other two projects are being implemented by local
EACEA - Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency, European Commission
authorities (county school inspectorates) and they focus on initial VET13 graduates (5 350 VET graduates). According to the same survey, at present, “virtually all European countries are developing their National Qualifications Frameworks (NQFs). The aim of these frameworks is to enable employers, learners and the general public to understand the full range of qualifications existing within a country, to clarify how they relate to one another and show how the different types of qualifications can contribute to improving the skills of the workforce”. As shown previously, Romania is also making efforts for NQF development. One of the objectives directly related to the academic performance is the University staff training. The development of partnerships such as business environment – educational institution may include the objective of the young University staff practical training. Thus, it will be possible to ensure a correct understanding of the Romanian business environment and the methods for design, development and implementation of marketing tools in Romania. Also, meetings (workshop type) can be organized with the company representatives of a specific profile, in view of collecting proposals for the elaboration of teaching materials, which is essential for connecting theory to practice. 5. Conclusions Besides the educational and training role, the Universities have to assume also the role of counsellor and career guide of the student on the labor market. Thus, career counselling centers exist or should be established within Universities, that should guide the student, taking into account his acquired skills, his personality and the market opportunities. Counselling and interaction with students or graduates can be facilitated by online communication tools, such as the web site. This tool can help the students become aware and communicate with the business environment, within integrated communication strategies. Communication with the graduates is a component of the value providing process, that shouldn’t be overlooked by Universities. No surveys have been published regarding the career of the higher education graduate in Romania; each University needs to find its own methods to communicate and obtain feedback from its graduates. In this respect, it is important to establish associations of graduates. The Universities have to increase their efforts of providing value to the target public, the student, and the social and economic environment. Besides the assurance of a high quality education, the University must represent an active stability and cooperation factor on the labor market. The University has to make available and provide valid information and skills, that the graduate can successfully use within the organisations. References: [1.] Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA P9 Eurydice), European Commission, New Skills for New Jobs Policy initiatives in the field of education: Short overview of the current situation in Europe, November 2010, Availableat: 13
VET - Vocational education and training, for more detail see: http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do? reference=MEMO/08/736&format=HTML&aged=0&language=EN&guiLanguage=en
[2.] [3.] [4.]
http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/education/eurydice/documents/thematic_reports/125EN.pdf [Accessed 09 January 2011] Manpower, (2010), Talent Shortage Survey Results, Available at: http://manpower.ca/ca/en/multimedia/2010_Global_Shortage_Survey_Results_tcm269 -57078.pdf [Accessed 10 January 2011] Mueller, W. and Gangl, M. eds., (2003), Transitions from education to work in Europe: the integration of youth into EU Labour Markets, Oxford University Press, Oxford. Societatea Academica din Romania, Change of paradigm in education and teaching methods, October 2010, SAR POLICY BRIEF No. 50, Available at: ttp://www.sar.org.ro/art/publicatii_sar/pwr__ewr/lansare_raport__ schimbarea_de_paradigma_in_educatie_si_metodele_de_predare-536-ro.html, [Accessed 28 December 2010] Societatea Academica din Romania, For a responsible authonomy â&#x20AC;&#x201C; expansion of Romanian Universities, SAR POLICY BRIEF No. 46, Available at: http://www.sar.org.ro/art/publicatii_sar/policy_briefs/pentru_o_autonomie_responsabil a_(descarca_policy_brief)-529-ro.html, [Accessed 28 December 2010]
STUDENT SATISFACTION IN HIGHER EDUCATION AND EMPATHY IN RELATIONSHIP WITH THEM Junior Assistant Emanuela Maria AVRAM, PhD Candidate, Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest email@example.com
Abstract: The internationalization in university education represents a consequence of globalization. Nowadays, higher education institutions want to become bigger, to develop more and more their research programs, to attract as many well prepared students to cope with increasing competition coming from big universities outside the country. The students’ possibility to choose a university from a variety of offers determines them to be very critical on the educational and material offer that is presented by the higher education institute. Therefore, during the last years, universities have made substantial efforts in developing an elaborated relational system based on the degree measurement of student satisfaction or dissatisfaction, in order to allow them to make optimal decisions in which to ensure their future success. Key words: leading students, satisfaction, quality, loyalty, empathy Jel Classification: M31, M39 Introduction: The aim of this article is to outline students’ satisfaction in higher education process. Satisfaction can be defined as the result of a psychological process in which a customer makes a comparison between the imagined performance level of a product or service and the real performance faced after receiving the goods or the service. If the satisfaction achieves the level of expectations, the customer will be pleased, if it exceeds that level, enthusiasm can be reached, and if the satisfaction is inferior to expectations, the phenomenon of dissatisfaction appears. For the higher education institute to provide maximum satisfaction to the students is necessary to have it fixed in empathy with them because this is how their expectations can be comprehended and new needs can be sensed to ensure their retention for subsequent cycles: MA, PhD. 1. Attracting students in higher education University appears to be an intermediary between supply and demand of education, between high school graduates and other categories willing to follow university courses, and bidders jobs for those who have university. It follows that any school operates in multiple markets. It has to draw a number of young people to have an “object” of activity, to provide and “sell” education services. This force of attraction will be stronger the more graduates are able to enter collages in greater numbers, or find bidders’ provided jobs more easily according to their expectations and requirements. (Alexandru Nedelea, pag. 97) High school graduates represent a potential market for universities, from where a number of candidates is selected by the criteria established for the entrance exam. Twelfthgrade students represent the main “client” of a university, being prospective students.
To draw the high school graduates, I believe that the first step is to talk directly with them. In an open conversation, they are able to ask questions and receive answers to clarify uncertainties and get rid of some doubts. It also facilitates the approach between the sender of the message and its receiver. A second step would be to offer educational presentation focusing on those items that the student desires – these are assumed to have been in the previous dialogue with the student. It is necessary to make the presentation of educational services in a dynamic way to awaken the student's enthusiasm, because enthusiasm at that age plays a determining role in a future choice. There must not be avoided inviting high school students at the university; this first contact with academia awakens unforgettable feelings. Also notes the need to hand out some flyers, posters or other promotional items, contact addresses, the student having the opportunity to carefully study them at home, or send an email, after the advance has created a pleasant memory thanks to the visit at the high school of a delegation sent by the university. 2. Student satisfaction in higher education process Higher education institutions, as companies, provide a product, but here it is an educational product that can be defined through a teaching process in which students are considered first stakeholders of the higher education institution,!"#$%&%'!()!*+,-./0!12230! 4)! 5678, consisting success in ability to satisfy your “customers” . Student satisfaction represents an important marketing activity which arises from their expectations on the university’s educational experience, because education, as any other service, is consumed by the beneficiary as it is produced, providing an intangible value. In 1992, Cronin and Taylor argued that service quality represents an antecedent of satisfaction, but the latter is stronger than quality because at higher levels of satisfaction can contribute factors such as convenience, price, availability, customer perception. (Cronin, Taylor, 1992) When a young man decides to follow certain university courses, first he takes into consideration the future advantages and the professional perspective offered to him by obtaining a diploma in that field. From information obtained through various ways and from staff responsible for counseling, which do not have to manifest a bent for exaggerated promises, the student forms a series of expectations on which further satisfaction or dissatisfaction will depend, because satisfaction in higher education services can be measured only after receiving the benefits of their performance. In a university, at general student satisfaction contributes a series of elements: - Quality of educational product – expressed by the teachers’ power to transmit innovative information, the capacity to communicate with students, their involvement in teaching process with an attitude through which to encourage student participation in various projects, debates, team work, practical works. It is also necessary providing useful documents and bibliographic sources to help them. Students have very different reactions from the same experience. Let’s consider the case where two students participate in the same course: one gets out satisfied, the other dissatisfied. What explains such a reaction? Clearly that each of the two students, when entering the classroom, had a certain expectation, the ulterior satisfaction or dissatisfaction depended on the fulfillment of the expectation. - The quality of student relationships with teachers and support staff - expressed by the behavior of the employees in departments that the student gets contact with: cashiers, secretariats, information offices, departments of international relations, etc., and collaborative relationships with teachers, their willingness to offer advice and explanations, supporting and encouraging the student to induce a sense of self confidence.
Perception of price - both university fees and expenses during the university course. The reputation of the higher education institution puts its print significantly over the satisfaction and loyalty of a student. Reputation can be defined as a general perception on a company, what represents, which is associate with, what is assumed you become when you get benefit of its services. (Fombrun & Shanley, 1990;MacMillan, Money, Downing, & Hillenbrand, 2005). The reputation of a company forms when it interacts with stakeholders, (Fombrun, 1996; Schuler, 2004), representing a mirror of its past actions. (Yoon, Guffey, & Kijewski, 1993) Next to students, from stakeholders take part also the parents who support their children moral and financial for a successful closure of the university cycle, their relatives, various local communities, employees of the university that provides the educational product, the companies where the future graduate will hire and the society that will benefit of a high- competitive level in world economy progress. (Steven A. Taylor, 1996, p. 208) Satisfaction leads to loyalty, a phenomenon influenced by financial, psychic and social factors. . ((9:;%<;!=)!>+<?+'0!@.4+-+!@+'%<;0!56620!4)7A8!Satisfaction plays a key role in studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; retention, those who have become licensed but will enroll in masters or doctoral degrees. 3. Empathy in relationship with student To generate maximum satisfaction, it is necessary for people with responsibility in working with students to develop with those an empathic relation. Empathy is the ability to share other's thoughts and feelings in a given situation, a way to act as if you were another person. First of all, empathy suggests few elements: - an open behavior - habitual interpretations of language, gestures, actions - listening - interest - impartation - attempt to understand - attention - sharing information Empathy can define a word which means to listen, or can be fully involvement in understanding the inner world of the person they relate. Trying to understand the inner world of another person means putting away something from your own person, from your personal values and attitudes, to try assuming anotherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s person attitude. And to answer another person's world, any response is a personal check. ( Franco Perino, Cristina Andreolli, 2003, p.5) The ability to feel empathy involves understanding what the person next to you lives like you live in his place. This means deep respect in a profound dimension to that person, without trial or different conditionings. Empathy is also an expression of the intellectual dimension of a person, integrating communication, transparency at some standards. Transparency in communication does not mean that two persons who communicate empathy to fully reveal to one another without any reserve, but requires a greater capacity for getting on the inner side to the other so you can share his feelings, to grant support, to exist a certain emotional fusion but also differentiation while it is necessary to recognize the other as a person with values. An empathic person is one who knows how to find common points in differentiation through effective communication so that you give the person in front of you the possibility of entering into a constructive
development in harmony with mind and heart, understanding other's needs. Empathy is different from sympathy while sharing the ending "pathy". If sympathy means "feeling with" empathy means "to feel in". Both presuppose the existence of at least two people and an emotional reality. (Ferdinando de Muro, 2005) In higher education as in other educational levels, there is a well-developed communication system between student, as transmitter of a message, and teacher as the receiver of the message transmitted by the student. An emphatic teacher must understand the student’s psychology, must be close to him, to manifest interest in his concerns, to project himself into the student’s person, that is how he will gain the student’s trust, as the ability of the teacher is more developed, the empathic ability of the student will also develop, which means that between the two an optimal relationship of cooperation will grow. J.P. Guilford says that empathy is “an ability to predict, to recognize the psychological moods of another person, perceptions, thoughts, attitudes, feelings as manifestations of his traits”. An emphatic teacher can anticipate the behavior of student, empathy materializing in this case on the ability "to read" his thoughts, desires and emotions encountered. Empathy has in such case an anticipatory function and a communicative function, having as basis an efficient communication between teacher and student, both verbal and nonverbal. I believe that in an educational institution is necessary for teachers to develop awareness and interest in students, in their living conditions at a time, in their experiences. In fulfilling this goal, communication skills are essential. Conclusion: Oliver (1993b) argued that consumer satisfaction can be interpreted through emotional and cognitive elements. In higher education this includes a sum of consumer’s feelings about the university services, and also the perceptions on the academic performance, in comparison with international standards. (Steven A. Taylor, 1996, p. 211) For understanding if a consumer is really satisfied, is necessary to make a measurement of the actual conduct of its perception, a measurement in his expectations on the performed educational service and the confrontation between the values expected and the ones provided. If perceptions value is superior to expectations this can be considered an indicator of consumer satisfaction. (http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soddisfazione_del_cliente) Empathy with consumers can lead to the appearance of long-term trust in the service providing institution; universities that succeed in developing such a empathic relation can usually be pleased by the students’ retention in the subsequent cycles: MA, PhD, and that is because practice has demonstrated that is much easier to keep an old client than to draw a new one, this thing being more difficult for an university because many times habitude appears among students and because change, dealing with something new can often be frightening. References: [1.]Abhay Shah (2009) – The Impact of Quality on Satisfaction, Revenur, and Const as Perceived by Providers of Higher Education, Journal of Marketing for Higher Education, vol. 19, p. 125-141 [2.]Audhesh K. Paswan, Gopala Ganesh (2009)- Higher Education Institutions: Satisfaction and Loyalty among International Students, Journal of Marketing for Higher Education vol. 19, p. 65-84, p. 73 [3.]Bruhn, M., (2001), Orientarea spre client – Temelia afacerii de succes, Editura Economic$, Bucure'ti
[4.]Cronin, J. J. J., & Taylor, S. A. (1992). Measuring service quality: A reexamination and extension, Journal of Marketing, 56(3), 55–68 [5.]Ferdinando de Muro (2005)– La Bella e la Bestia: la relazione empatica nella formazione al lavoro, INformazione Psicoterapia Counselling Fenomenologia”, n°6 novembre-dicembre, pag. 66-72, Roma [6.]Fombrun, C., & Shanley, M. (1990) - What’s in a name? Reputation building and corporate strategy, Academy of Management Journal, 33(2), 233–258 [7.]Fombrun, C. (1996) - Reputation: Realizing value from the corporate image, Boston Harvard Business Press [8.]MacMillan, K., Money, K., Downing, S., & Hillenbrand, C. (2005) - Reputation in relationships: Measuring experiences, emotions and behaviors, Corporate Reputation Review, 8(2), 214–232. [9.]Martinelli Elisa, Ricercatore; Resta Federica, Laureanda (2002)- Soddisfazione del consumatore nella fruizione di servizifinanziari: banche e distributori grocery francesi a confronto. Un’analisi di “Critical Incident Technique”, CONGRESSO INTERNAZIONALE “LE TENDENZE DEL MARKETING IN EUROPA”, Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Paris – EAP, p. 25-26, Gennaio [10.] McClung Gordon W., Werner Mary W. (2008) – A Market/Value Based Approach to Satisfy Stakeholders of Higher Education, Journal of Marketing for Higher Education, vol 18:1, p. 102-123 [11.] Mezirow, J., (2003) - Apprendimento e trasformazione. Il significato dell'esperienza e il valore della riflessione nell'apprendimento degli adulti, Raffaello Cortina Editore, Milano [12.] Nedelea Alexandru – Mk Educa%ional, Revista Român$ de Studii Culturale, ROCSIR, pag. 97 [13.] Oliver Richard L. (1993b), 20 Decembre (1993), olshavsky, Richard W. And Richard A. Spreng (1995), Consumer Satisfaction and Students: Some Pitfalls of Being Customer Driven, Journal of Consumer Satisfaction, Dissatisfaction, & Complaining Behavior, (Forthcoming), p. 418-430 [14.] Oyvind Helgesen (2008) – Marketing for Higher Education: A Relationship Marketing Approach, Journal of Marketing for Higher Education, 18:1, p. 50-78 [15.] Perino Franco, Andreolli Cristina (2003) - Spiritualità e Trascendenza nella relazione di aiuto secondo l’Approccio Centrato sulla Persona - ACP –Rivista di Studi Rogersiani p. 5 http://www.acpitalia.it/rivista/2003/Franco_perino,_cristina_andreolli__spiritualita_e_trascendenza_nella_relazione_d_aiuto_secondo_l_acp.pdf [16.] Schuler, M. (2004). Management of the organizational image: A method for organizational image configuration, Corporate Reputation Review, 7(1), 37–53. [17.] Steven A. Taylor, (1996) - Consumer Satisfaction with Marketing Education: Extending Services Theory to Academic Practice, Journal of Customer Satisfaction Dissatisfaction and Complaining Behavior, Vol. 9, p. 207-220 [18.] Yoon, E., Guffey, H. J., & Kijewski, V. (1993). The effects of information and companyreputation on intentions to buy a business service, Journal of Business Research, 27, p. 215–228 [19.] http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soddisfazione_del_cliente - site accessed on 20.11.2010
THE EXTENT TO WHICH ROMANIAN COMPANIES ORIENT THEIR STRATEGIC COMMUNICATION EFFORTS TO THEIR STAKEHOLDERS Junior Assistent Cristina NEAGOE, Ph.D Candidate Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest firstname.lastname@example.org
Abstract: In its market relations, the organization sets direct or indirect contacts with various public categories, which are part of the internal or external environment. The profitability of such interactions is obtained by using communication techniques, media and messages that may prove to be a real strategic and operational capital to reach the organizational targets. New dimensions of the organization appear due to the complexity of the relations which the company develops with the stakeholders. Increasing the value perceived by customers involves at present an orientation of the organization towards all stakeholders, who are a value generating chain, and as such a valuable component of relationship marketing. This study aims to assess the extent to which the communicational flows of Romanian companies are stakeholder-oriented. The results of quantity research demonstrates that there is a significantly distinct approach between the relationship marketing theory and organizational practice. The orientation towards employees, suppliers and distributors is the concern of less than half of the companies under analysis, whereas customers are still the main category of stakeholders from the viewpoint of the strategic communication approach. Keywords: marketing communication, relationship marketing, audience-specific communication, Romanian market 1. Introduction: The growing interest of both specialists and practitioners in marketing communication is mainly due to the evolution of the concept of relationship marketing. One of the most significant evolutions which accompany the emergence and development of relationship marketing is the introduction of integrated marketing communication. The attention of various authors in the field has focused ever since the beginning of the 21st century on setting the role and place held in the communication process and the means to improve it, so that the outcome of the marketing activity ensures the creation and development of profitable partnerships between the organization and stakeholders. “The old paradigm – a system of mass production and advertising is fullyreplaced by a new paradigm – a one to one economic system, products adjusted to suit each individual, cutomized promotion according to each and every consumer” (, Kitchen Ph., Don Shultz, 2009, p. 198). Customer orientation founded the optimization of the specific theoretical background by including in definitions terms specific to the current context, which have the special feature of expressing with words the total tendencies registered in customer communication. One of the latest definitions of the concept gives marketing communication the importance of “informing, persuading and reminding consumers,
directly or indirectly, of the traded products and brands ; it is the company voice and the means whereby it can set a dialogue with its customers and, at the same time, it can cultivate a relationship climate among them“ (, Keller K. L., 2009, p. 141). The specifics of relationship marketing are represented by the mainly interactive nature of the business and the inclusion of all persons, natural persons or legal entities, with direct or indirect interests in the profit or company activity, in drafting and implementing marketing strategies. Basically, elements such as: stimulating feedback, listening to customers, customizing contact, managing complaints, client-oriented structures and systems, target specific messages, profitable collaboration, partnerships etc. create the relationship picture. As concerns this study, we can identify in the configuration of each of the above-mentioned elements, a communicational component that may influence the said feature. In the specialty literature, there are various statements which certify the role of communication in strengthening lasting and profitable relations with all categories of stakeholders. The following are among the most significant: 1. Creating, maintaining and developing customer relations: - “Communication is the fundamental integrating element of all the activities related to the creation, management and development of human relations and the brand” (Duncan, Moriety taken from , Gummesson, 2008, p. 132); 2. Creating the conditions (techniques, tools, messages) necessary to set up stakeholder partnerships: - “One of the most important features of integrated communication is that it considers all stakeholders in the communication strategy” (, Mulhern, 2009, p. 95); 3. Communication with the help of modern technologies and through the digital media ensures the dialogue which is the essence of any relationship building: - “Organizations all over the world increasingly integrate relationship marketing as strategic activity for business success and for customer loyalty. This global tendency is supported by the development of interactive communication and technological progress ” (, Abaet( de Ayevedo 2008, p.177); 2. Stakeholder communication: In its market relations, the organization sets direct or indirect contacts with various public categories, which are part of the internal or external environment. The profitability of such interactions is obtained by using communication techniques, media and messages that may prove to be a real strategic and operational capital to reach the organizational targets. “Integrated marketing communication was proposed as a concept adapted to relationship marketing” (, Finne A., Grönroos Ch., 2009, p. 181) since increasing the value perceived by customers involves orienting the organizational efforts to all stakeholders, who are a value generating chain, and as such an important element of relationship marketing. “Understanding long term relations both with the consumers and with other stakeholders was a phenomenon long neglected in the marketing literature; managing organizational relations both internally and externally must become a vital activity called relationship marketing” (, Jose Quero M., Ventura R., 2009, p. 20). In this case, one to one marketing seems to be limited. Going from interaction with individuals to the extension of relations within the network is indicated by Gummesson, who proposes the concept many – to – many marketing. The transition from transactional marketing to relationship marketing has lead to a series of significant modifications, both conceptual and operational. One of the most
important is the redefinition of activity rules. Considering the complex concept definition, based on the interaction within relation networks as formulated by Gummesson, according to whom the network is “a set of multilateral relations which can develop and make a complex relation model... the involved parties coming into active contact ... which we call interaction” (, Gummesson E., 2008, p. 6), we note a multilateral process. In 2006, Gronroos defined relationship marketing as the “process to identify, set, grow and, if necessary, end customer relations and other parties interested in a profit, so that the objectives of all parties involved are reached” (, Pop N. Al., 2006, p. 38). The organization must not only analyse the components of the internal and external environment, but must also recognize the interested parties as partners that can collaborate in reaching the organizational targets. There is, therefore, the tendency to overcome limits in the market relations and to go to a much more complex configuration which involves the creation and development of relations within the network. Creating partnerships must be a priority for the top management. The modern organizations’ orientation towards relationship marketing involves communication activities with a high level of specificity. The features corresponding to the relationship marketing objectives have lead researchers to new observations. The scientific results trigger the occurrence of a new concept which aims to capture the confluence area of relational marketing and marketing communication. Authors such as Duncan and Moriarty, Lindberg-Repo, Grönroos Ch. suggested the use of the interdisciplinary notion – relationship communication (, Finne A., Grönroos Ch., 2009, p. 179). Since the main objective is to create and develop lasting and profitable partnerships, notions such as trust, collaboration, commitment, satisfaction and communication as dialogue are a favourable framework to reach this target. The ongoing exchange of information can create a climate of trust and collaboration becoming one of the fundamental elements with a substantial contribution to relationship strengthening. The communication process requires the coherence of planning, which is the result of a careful analysis on the needs of each party involved. The frequency of the communication action, its formality degree and the direction of information flows are possible factors that contribute to drafting the specific communication strategy. It is necessary to consider new dimensions of communication due to the complexity of relations the company develops with stakeholders. Inserting these tendencies in this particularly rich field leads almost naturally to redefining communication as “the degree to which each member participates in the mutual exchange of useful information with the other partners, and the process includes issues such as frequency, mode, direction, quality and involvement” (, Polo Redondo Y., Cambra Fierro J., 2006 p. 85). 3. Case study The philosophy of relationship marketing has had an unprecedented complexity in the history of conceptual and operational marketing. Traditionally, customers were the target of all marketing efforts of an organization, being considered that they are the main component of the external environment. The new paradigm, relationship marketing, imposes that the higher satisfaction of demand bearers is no longer the only direction which governs the activity of a company but also the relation with all categories of actors who have the interest that the organization activity becomes a central objective. Therefore, all the components of the (internal and external) environment acquire an essential role in reaching the final organizational target, which is to maximize economic efficiency.
Methodology: Under the circumstances, this study mainly aims to assess the extent to which the communicational flows of Romanian companies are stakeholder-oriented. Because in the specialty literature there is the axiom according tow which the relationship marketing objectives can be reached depending on the orientation of communication efforts in a balanced manner to each of the interested external parties, we tried to identify the difference between the theory and practice of companies in Romania. From the diverse variants of marketing research, we opted for a survey through a questionnaire. The purpose of this survey was formulated in close connection with the problem under study: setting the extent to which the communication efforts are oriented towards customers, employees, suppliers and distributors. The respondents, in total number of 312, were randomly selected and work in small and medium size enterprises as well as large companies. The research was conducted in the period March-November 2010. The theoretical data base and the identification of various aspects which characterize communication in the practice of relationship marketing, which is the result of observation and personal notes, lead to the following hypotheses: - Customers are an integral part of the stakeholder category towards which the company mainly directs its communicational efforts; - There is no balanced ratio between the parties with an interest with respect to the communicational actions carried out by the company; Results of the research: The order in the hierarchy of the company stakeholders which became visible following the survey is not surprising. As concerns the orientation of communication efforts towards customers, approximately 94% of the respondents expressed their agreement (totally 72.88% and partially 20.34%). A balanced percentage was obtained with respect to the category of employees and suppliers and distributors. From the perspective of the respondents, the companies where they work direct their communication efforts towards the two stakeholder categories (employees and suppliers and distributors) with almost the same frequency. The comparative analysis revealed the following: Table 1. Comparative analysis of the frequency of communication actions oriented towards employees, distributors and suppliers Answering time Total agreement Partial agreement
Supplier- and distributororiented communication
As indicated above, the simultaneous analysis of the answers to the question referring to the to extent to which the communication efforts are oriented towards a certain stakeholder category, indicates once more that in the opinion of Romanian companies, customers are the most important stakeholders.
To what extent do you think that the communication efforts of your company are oriented towards:
!" dezacord total Disagree dezacord Totally disagree partial
acord partial Totally acord agree total Agree
SUPPLIERS AND DISTRIBUTORS CLIENTS EMPLOYEE )*+,-.+( /-0/1/.+( 234-+564+(7+(8+7.4+93+.64+( S Chart 1.The extent ro which romanian companies orient their strategic communication efforts to their stakeholders
In the specialty literature, certain authors suggest the need to include customers, employees, distributors and suppliers in the same stakeholder category with a view to creating and developing partnerships which are profitable to all parties involved in the relationship process. Between the theory of relationship marketing and the organizational practice there is a significant difference. The orientation towards employees, suppliers and distributors is the concern of less than half of the companies under this analysis (total or partial agreement). 4.
Conclusions: It takes a considerable time to implement relationship marketing in Romanian companies. Adjustment to the requirements of the current economic situation requires a high level of flexibility. The communication role is considerable with respect to setting and developing partnerships within the relation network. Increasing the communication frequency and the involvement of the other stakeholder categories is critical in going from traditional marketing, oriented exclusively towards customers, to relationship marketing which acknowledges the role held by each external partner in carrying out the company market activity. References:  Abaet( de Ayevedo, Pomerany R., (2008), Customer obsesion: How to acquire, retain and grow customers in the new age of relationship marketing, Ed. McGraw-Hill  Finne A., Grönroos Ch., (2009), Rethinking marketing communication: From integrated marketing communication to relationship communication, Journal of marketing communications, Vol. 15, Nos 2-3, aprilie – iulie pp. 179-195  Grönroos C., (2004), The relationship marketing process: communication, interaction, dialogue, value, Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing, Vol. 19, pp. 99-111  Gummesson E. (2008), Total relationship marketing: Marketing Management, Relationship strategy and CRM approaches for the network economy, Edi!ia a IIIa, Ed. Elsevier
 Jose Quero M., Ventura R., The role of stakeholders in the management of cultural organisations: the case of performing arts in Spain, Journal of relationship marketing, Vol. 8., Nr.1, pp. 17-35  Keller K. L., (2009), Building strong brands in a modern marketing communications environment, Journal of marketing communications, Vol. 15, Nos. 2-3, aprilie-iulie, pp. 139-155  Kitchen Ph., Don Shultz, (2009), IMC: New horizon/false dawn for a marketplace in turmoil, Journal of marketing communications, Vol. 15, Nos. 2-3, Aprilie – iulie, pp. 197-204  Mulhern F., (2009), Integrated marketing communications: From media channels to digital conectivity, Journal of marketing communications, Vol. 15, Nos 2-3, aprilieiulie, pp. 85-101  Polo Redondo Y., Cambra Fierro J., The long- term orientation of a firm – suppliers relationships: Analysis of moderating effect of belonging to an Agro – Food protection system, Journal of Food Products Marketing, Vol. 12, Nr. 4, pp.79-108  Pop N. Al., (2006), O nou! paradigm! în marketingul contemporan; marketingul rela"ional, Revista management&marketing, Iss.3, pp.33-44  Purc$rea Th. (coord.), (2008), Opera"ionalizarea transferului de cunoa#tere #i competitivitatea sectorului distribu"iei bunurilor de consum, Ed. de Centrul de informare 'i documentare economic$  Schultz D. E., Patti Ch., (2009), The evolution of IMC: IMC in a customer – driven marketplace, Journal of marketing communications, Vol. 15, Nr. 2-3, aprilie, pp. 75-84
THE FUTURES OF SMALL AND MEDIUM SIZED ENTERPRISES Junior Assistant Mariana ENU%I, PhD Candidate, Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest email@example.com â&#x20AC;?Stay in the course The Futres is yours!â&#x20AC;? Bill Clinton, Bucharest, 1997 Abstract The past twenty years has seen growing academic and policy interest in the role of SMEs within a global context. There has been much debate surrounding the negative impact of globalization on the international SME arising from increased competitive pressure. However, SMEs have long found opportunities in the global economy and as international innovation has expanded, so too have these oprtunities. Despite these advantages, the SME share in the total value of international innovation is often found to be markedly lower that their share in GDP, evidence of the barriers facing the SME seeking to access international markets. Accordingly the international SME has attracted the attention of policy markers, as any barriers to international innovation are likely to impinge disproportionately on this group of firms which are often the productive, R&D intensive and most growth orientated, and thus potentially the strongest contributors to a dynamic national economy. Keywords: Small and Medim sized Enterprises, innovation, futures, foresight
I. Romanian Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises Romanian Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises are those enterprises that carry out services of research and development in different domains but they have as common denominator the intellectual capital, intangible capital and they revolutionise the knowledge through their number, their impact and the economical, scientific, educational, ecological and cultural performance. The specialistsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; opinions regarding the definition of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises have different characteristics. Our opinion is that the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises transform knowledge in products and services, in intellectual and competent capital as raw material, capitalizing the services as efficiently as possible through processes of buying and selling, storing, sharing, developing, protecting the knowledge whilst conditioning the obtaining of profit and the sustainability of the company. The SMEs innovation competency is a way to put in practice all knowledge, knowhow and also attitudes, inside a specific context. Competence management in SMEs is becoming more and more important: competence has been well recognized as extremely important for the achievement of SME goals, complimentary to, for instance, core business processes, customer relationships, financial issues and so on.
The Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises need the most advanced information and communication technologies for the development and assurance of their activities, research and development, new product innovation, innovation processes, alternatives to the existing, regarding them as essential tools for their sustainability. The Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises innovate and producers and specializate of software are interested in the research and production of the newest improved generations of software compatible to the latest generations of hardware at advantageous prices and a distribution as widely possible accesible to all the Small and Medium Enterprises and users. Innovation statistical survey results presents innovative activities of enterprises in Romania during 2006-2008. Analysis was done for 3 years period, on the main achievements obtained by enterprises in 2006 until 2008 were presented, in the field of products and processes innovation, representing the contribution of Romania to evaluate the European innovation statistical survey results C/S 2008. Innovation activity characterisation is done pursuing the activities in which enterprises are engaged, namely: ! Introducing some new or significantly improved products (goods or services) or processes; ! Engagement in non-finalized or abandoned innovation projects; ! Expenditure of enterprises for R&D activity, equipment and software acquisitions, patents and non-paented inventions acquisitions, know-how, training of staff or activities of new products or processes introduction on the market; ! Implementing some changes in the enterprise structure or management methods or products sale methods. Innovative enterprises include successful innovators and non-finalized and/or abandoned innovations. Successful innovators are definedi as enterprises which introduced or implemented at least one innovative product during 2006-2008. Data analysis points out that during 2006-2008, 6013 enterprises developed innovative activities, of which 5970 are successful innovators, number of non-finalized and/or abandoned innovations being unsignificant. Table of annex 1 presents in details by activity and size class data referring to innovative and non-innovative enterprises. Innovation characterization is carried out by means of indicator which calculates the retio between innovative enterprises and total number of enterprises in statistical population. Tabel nr. 1 Tipologyof innovators, during 2006 - 2008 Number of SMEs
Total enterprises Innovative enterprises Succesful innovators Product innovation only Process
Weight of Total Number of SMEs (%)
innovation 4276 15,0 Product and process innovation 43 0,2 Enterprises with abandoned and/or ongoing innovation Non-Innovative 22475 78.9 Enterprises Sursa: National Institut e of Statistics, Innovation in Industry and Services, 2009 Note: Due to the rounding of decimal part sum of weights may be different from total Weight of innovative enterprises, during 2006 - 2008 was 21.1% and noninnovative enterprises 78.9%. Innovative percentage of Romanian enterprises remains low as compared to European average of 2008, of 39.5%. Innovation rate expressed as weight of successful innovators in total enterprises was 21.0%. Of total innovators, 15.0% developed innovative products and processes, 1.8% had only innovations of products and 4.1% had only innovations of processes. Weight of enterprises with non-finanlized or abandoned innovations was only 0.2%.
Fig. 1: Weight of innovative and non-innovative enterprises in total enterprises, during 2006-2008 Per activity of total innovative enterprises, 63.0% enterprises are in industry with four percentage points less than during 2006-2008, while services registered a growth with four percentage points reaching 37.0%.
Fig. 2: Breackdown of innovative enterprises by main activities Bigger enterprises are more innovative than small and middle ones. Enterprises having 250 and over employees have a weight of 42.1%, middle enterprises 27.4% and small enterprises 17.4%.
Fig..3: Weight of innovative enterprises in all enterprises, by size classes and activity, during 2006-2008 Of total innovative enterprises, 14,1% belong to a group of enterprises, over half of them having head office abroad. In industry, the highest weight of innovative enterprises in total enterprises of activity sector is held by manufacturing with 97.0 %, mining and quarrying and electric and thermal energy, gas and water registering very low weights, of 1.8%, respectively 1.2 %. The most innovative economic activities in manufacturing are: tobacco products where one of two enterprises is innovative (50.0%), crude oiI processing, nuclear fuel treatment and coking (42.9%), road transport means (42.4%), transport means not included in road ones (40.6%) and chemical substances an products (36.6%). The least innovative industries remain leather goods and footwear and clothing articles. In services the highest weight of innovative enterprises in total enterprises is held by real estate transactions, renting and activities of services mainly rendered to the enterprises (31.8%) where are important contribution is brought by enterprises having R&D as main activity. An important growth was registered by financial intermediation (31.9%) which made a considerable effort in the development an implementation of innovative projects, followed by transport, storage and communications with a weight o,: 19.1%. The lowest weight is held by wholesale, 16.5%. By type of innovation, the highest weight is held by product and process innovators pointing out: that enterprises are concerned with development and implementation both of
innovative products an processes. Financial intermediation activities registered the highest weight for only process innovations (8.7%) but also for only product innovations (4.7%). The lowest weight for product innovators only was registrated by electrical and thermal energy, gases and water. Enterprises belonging to minning and quarrying have not developed product innovation onfr-
Fig.4: Weight of successful innovators in all enterprises, by activity and types of innovators, during 2006-2008 Of the total product innovators, 3338 declared innovation of goods and 2638 innovation of services. Of the process innovators, 3570 enterprises developed or implemented methods of manufacturing or producing, 2558 enterprises implemented logistics, delivery or distribution methods and 2896 used supporting activities such as maintenance systems or operations for purchasing, accounting or computing. The table presents types of innovations both by main sectors, respectively industry and services and by size classes of enterprises. Table 2: Tipology of innovators, by activity and sizes, during 2006-2008 number Total successful innovators Total Small Medium Large Industy Small Medium Large Mining and quarrying Manufacturing Small Medium Large Electrical and thermal energy, gase and water Services Small Medium Large
of which: Product innovation only
Process innovation only
Product and Process innovation only
5970 3506 1817 647 3764 1931 1310 523 44 3651 1902 1275 474 69
525 330 155 40 291 157 113 21 288 156 113 19 3
1169 699 1365 105 692 374 230 88 12 659 362 223 74 21
4276 2477 1297 502 2781 1400 967 414 32 2704 1384 939 381 45
2206 1575 507 124
234 173 42 19
477 325 135 17
1495 1077 330 88
Sursa National Institute of Statistics, Innovation in Industry and Services, 2009 Note: Due to the rounding of decimal part sum of weights may be different from total Amond products innovators 3338 declared goods innovation and 2638 services innovation; among process innovators 3570 developed or implemented methods of goods processing and producing, 2558 logistic methods of products, goods and services supply and delivery and 2896 had support activities (supply operations, accounting evidence, calculation and exploitation systems). In 2008, weight of turnover for innovative enterprises was 48.0% of total turnover of enterprises object of this statistical survey. Non-innovative enterprises hold a weight of 52.0% of total turnover. Out of total employees 40.7 % developed their activity in innovative enterprises. Annexed tables present in details the above mentioned indicators. For enterprises which during 2006 - 2008 had products innovations (goods or services), another important economic indicator was calculated, namely turnover of new products. New or significantly improved products innovations can be classificated in new products for enterprise or new for market. Weight of turnover for new or significantly improved products in total turnover of enterprises in 2008 was 18.6%. New products enterprises for the firm had a weight of 13.7%, as against those new products for the market with a weight of 4.9%. Only 8.8% of total turnover of small and middle enterprises was obtained from new or significantly improved products. In total turnover of products, new products for the market hold a weight of 11.6%, new products for the firm about three times more, 32.3% and unchanged products hold a weight of 56.1%. II. The financing of the medium of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises The productive logics of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises subordinates to financial logics, but the movement of capital is no longer inspired by the solid bases of the real economy. Until now the objectives of the real economy had priority and the financial-monetary domain had to adapt to them: the level of the price was derived from the ratio of demand and supply of the goods and services, and the interest rate represented the ratio between available economies and the need for investments. The situation has changed; direct foreign investments are the oxygen of the real economy, the monetary stability is a priority and, because of this, there are some restrictions on the real economy. The rate of interest derives from the anticipation of the monetary market and from the imperatives of stability of the central banks. If until now the strategies were concentrated to finance the developing firms, attracting of strategic investors was the policy of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises. From 2009 these would concentrate on â&#x20AC;&#x153;buy-sideâ&#x20AC;? because a part of the clients of the firm have turned from direct investors, into investors involved in transactions with distressed assets. The restructuring of the activity has been imminent because the economic crisis involves a financial blockage of all participants to the real economy. There are running projects for which the financing is essential, and economic entities being in financial blockage search financing from the capital market, because banks have stopped credits or give them very rarely to Small and Medium Enterprises. For 2011 we can expect to an increase of these types of projects without founds and crash of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises without financial sustaining.
The volume of the investors has increased as soon as the expectancies about evaluation of the Small and Medium Enterprises have become more realistic and more transparent. The majority of the investors are strategic but we prefer the associations between strategic investors and investment funds. This formula assures the growth and development of all organizations, especially the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises, through reducing the inefficiency and know-how transfer (acquisition of new communication and information technology). The performance of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises are increasing. Creating value becomes more and more the result of financial activities, acting in this respect through the creation and operation of specific situations are far from the real economy - and foreign exchange speculation by buying the lower price and selling at higher price, review and assessment completed authorized official business, location and relocation bank deposits where benefits are higher, the distribution of dividends or interest on shares, concentration of financial and banking activities that facilitate price increases, privatization, relocation firms and financial and banking establishments etc.. Key actors are non-banking financial institutions, known as institutional investors - pension funds, collective investment, insurance, financial and banking companies specialized hedge funds, mutual funds, etc. help. collecting revenue savings, through which shareholders become owners-effects and have debt, and on this basis, the strong influence of orientation and income investors. Ensuring economic growth induces in a first phase at least â&#x20AC;?increase faster mass negotiable financial assets and negotiable, then the stock increases more rapidly than the volume of tradable securities of financial assets, which .., spreadsâ&#x20AC;? the risk in all directions. European financial market was unified, but not yet unique and is characterized by: - The place - interconnect market by modern communications networks; - The time for that work continuously. A huge volume increased financial operations (in 2003 currency transactions daily 1881 billion U.S. dollars, the volume of operations on the global financial market, 51 times greater than the volume of world trade). Finances are their own logic and a'az$ economy in the financial capital investment. The character becomes the owner of determining shareholder, owner obligatar and treasury bills, and values such heritage constitutes a highly volatile and risky. Power Finance is required across the capital in the industrial action, condi!ionĂ˘ndu him under many aspects: - To pressure for centralization; - Mergers and acquisitions in place for financial investors; - Financialisation industrial groups; - Promoting a new governance of the firm, which is financial. The rise of financial left a shadow on the bank: - The share of loans has declined in favor of issuing financial securities; - The share of bank deposits declined in favor of investments in non-bank institutions; - The issue of negotiable securities based on loans granted by banks - titrizarea - has grown considerably over the past. Banks fall deeper in the forex market strongly swollen by speculation. Romanian and European banks are here in the first line. Banks and remove them from the real economy. The implications for firms financialisation economy: the rapid movement of capital transactions in real time, financing issues of securities, bank loans with difficulties and risks higher, more rapid centralization, a large increase in ope (public offer to
purchase) location and relocation company in the EU, leaving the paradises tax, competition, etc.. Increase the power of institutional investors, the profile of first-pass under pressure from the shareholders decisions, is to permanently increase the rate, the inflation accounts. Such measures are considered imperfections of markets and the ongoing regulatory: - Institutional investors, holding shares in companies, do not hesitate to alter their strategies. Administrators are forced to listen even to the risk of diminishing the value of company stock. In fact, institutional investors that are comparable to seek arbitration on the market. - Is looking for growth rates that investors no longer thanks to dividends. Want more. - By 1990, company governance (corporate governance) is subordinate managers, requiring that high-income and regular quarterly reports and may, on its own expertise to the firm of specialized organizations. - In addition, because of stock companies, unifies the interests of property and further, to require that employees and managers to become, also shareholders in the firm, and so solidarity, to eliminate conflict of interest. - Mergers, acquisitions of companies, etc., financialisation stresses and are well received by investors. - Financialisation increases uncertainty in the firm wage issue, political, socio-cultural and environmental. The company is subject to dual control: a) internal, which is sanctioned by the Board, the oversight and direction; b) externally, which is sanctioned by the financial markets. In this stage, the Europeanization of economies of EU member countries takes place in two ways: a) development of intra trade of all kinds and the achievement of common objectives or activities; b) the establishment of subsidiaries of EU companies in countries other than where their registered office, the concentration and centralization of capital, mergers and acquisitions, joint development of subsidiaries by companies from different countries or in their home countries, either third countries, but in the EU. Financialisation facilitates very much especially the second way. The first is facilitated, in turn, the existence of the single currency and common rules of promotion. By blending two ways in financialisation were boosted greatly enhance indicators representative of the firms in the EU. In this regard, note: • entrances and exits of foreign direct investments; • stocks of foreign direct investments; • mergers and acquisitions of companies; • business figures of subsidiaries; • the assets of subsidiaries; • exports and imports of branches in the EU and beyond; • herds persons employed in subsidiaries. III. Conclusions The constitution of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises and the actions of other Romanian economic actors follow complex aims and effects, but it is very clear that in the Romanian, European, or international economic medium, all of them very
volatile due to globalization, the stability or certainty in movement becomes fundamental, because the turbulence seems to have emerged everywhere. Of course, in the case of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises, the firms have learnt long time ago, and are still learning, how to work towards success, but the present economic media that overlap more and more, this reaction is no longer sufficient because the competition become global and the means of its development have become complicated. In the EU the national character of economy is blotting out more and more and the European economy combines more and more in its home as well as on other meridians with the economies from other countries or integrationist regional groups in various degrees. The Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises are the engine of this economy and are the most developed link, but in a such context, Romanian enterprises confront with 3 important problems: the information, the influence and the financing that they have to manage as well as they could. These problems are not new, but now they have become explosive. The performance of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises have to be optimal and, implicitly, the competence of their employees, through the acquisition the new information and communication technology (TIC), which are strictly necessary for developing their activity and assuring their sustainability. The access to financing, as an essential ingredient of accelerating the innovative process inside the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises, has to be sustained constantly for a sustainable development of these firms. One of the important points of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Cartel of Bolognaâ&#x20AC;? refers to the access to financing as an essential ingredient of accelerating the innovative process inside the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises. The uncertainty and the asymmetry of information that feature in the Small and Medium Enterprises based on knowledge are amplified in the case of the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises, which makes their access to a financing more difficult. Firstly, the economic effects resulting from innovative activities have a higher degree of uncertainty. Secondly, the enterprises/contractors have more information about the nature and the characteristic of the products and the technological processes than the potential investors. Thirdly, the innovative activities are usually intangible, so their evaluation ex ante is difficult, using monetary terms, before they have commercial success. Therefore, financing the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises is very risky and has a high degree of uncertainty, creating reserve from investors and enforcing the governmentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s involving through specific programs, for supplying the private sources to financing the Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises. The economic structure of the Small and Medium Enterprises differs from the economic structure of a great company that operates on a market. Any company combines the own financial resources with the attracted ones. Lack of real guaranties from the Small and Medium Enterprises makes the access to the resources to be different. The financial structure for the Innovative and Small and Medium Enterprises based on knowledge and the modality they finance their development depend on: -institutional efficiency of the capital market -regulation of the domain regarding the supervision of the involved institutions in financing businesses with high risk. In conclusions, the authors suggest that a solution resulted from the analysis performed, in the domain of innovation and knowledge in Innovative Small and Medium Enterprises with the interaction between private and public services for developing their activity and this mechanism of investment in intellectual capital can be a mechanism of launching the Romanian economy in the context of this globally economic crisis.
References: [1.] Drucker, P.,(1993), Inova"ia si sistemul antreprenorial, Practic$ 'i Principii, Editura Enciclopedic$, Bucure'ti [2.] Drucker, P.,(1998), Despre profesia de manager, Editura Meteor Press, Bucre'ti, [3.] Egbu CO (2000a) Knowledge management in construction SME's: coping with the issues of structure, culture, commitment and motivation. Proceedings of the 16th Annual Conference of ARCOM (AKINTOYE A, Ed), 6–8 September, Glasgow Caledonian University, ARCOM, Reading, UK, Vol. 1, pp 83–92; [4.] Enusi, Mariana, Dobre Ion (2009), Consideration regarding the effect of Integrated use of technologies and techniques for Small and Medium Romanian Enterprises based on knowledge, 2nd,international conference: quantitative and qualitative methologies in the economic and administrative sciences (Q.M.E.A.S. 2009), Atena, Grecia 25-26-27, Clasa A; http://books.google.com/booksMariana+Enusi&hl=ro&cd=1#v=onepage&q=Mari ana%20Enusi&f; [5.] Enu&i, M., (2010), Financizarea mediului de afaceri o solu%ie de ie&ire din criz$, Tribuna economic$, Nr. 39, Miercuri 29 Septembrie, p 61-63; [6.] Enusi, Mariana (2008) “Probability of Best Project based on Knowledge integration, Knowledge related issues abound in Knowledge applications of Small and Medium Enterprises” , 2008, International Conference on QUALITY – INNOVATION – EUROPEAN INTEGRATION Sibiu, September 18, ISBN 3901888-41-3, VIENNA 2008, Clasa B+; [7.] Enusi, Mariana, (2008), Competence Knowledge management and the competence Knowledge management information systems of the Small and Medium Enterprises, International Conference Business Excelance - ICBE – Brasov, Octomber, Clasa B+; [8.] Enusi,Mariana (2008), Portability of intellectual capital in Best Practice Cases for Small and Medium Enterprises based on Knowledge- Conferin!a cu participare interna!ional$, Inovare, competitivitate 'i etic$ în afaceri, Bucure'ti, Octombrie, ISBN 978-973-749-459-7; [9.] Gheorghe, C., M., Covrig, M., Ganatsiois, S., Kikis, V., Meghea, A.,(2009) Inovarea o solu$ie pentru IMM-uri, Editura Electra, Bucure&ti, 2009, pp. 50-55; [10.] Ionescu, V., (2004), Managementul firmelor mici 'i mijlocii, Editura Economic$, Bucure'ti [11.] ****Institutul Na%ional de Statistic$ – Inovarea în întreprinderile din România în perioada 2004-2006, Comunicat de Pres$ nr. 38 din 31 iulie 2006; [12.] ****Institutul Na%ional de Statistic$ – Activitatea de Cercetare-Dezvoltare în anul 2007, [13.] ****Institutul Na%ional de Statistic$ – Inovarea în Industrie %i Servicii în perioada 2004-2006, [14.] ****Strategia de inovare a regiunii de Vest România 2009 -2013; [15.] **** Comisia European$: Întreprinderi 'i industrie: Întreprinderile mici au prioritate Europa este bun! pentru IMM-uri, iar IMM-urile sunt bune pentru Europa, Edi!ia 2008, Aceast$ publica!ie este finan!at$ prin Programul-cadru pentru competitivitate &i inovare (CIP), care î'i propune s$ încurajeze competitivitatea întreprinderilor europene. http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/newsroom/cf/_getdocument.cfm?doc accesat 04.ian 2011;
A SUCCESSFUL ADVERTISING CAMPAIGN Junior Assistant Gabriela VÂLCEANU, PhD Candidate, Romanian-American University 1B, Expozi!iei Avenue, Sector 1, Bucharest
firstname.lastname@example.org ”The great art of writing advertisements is the finding the proper method to catch the reader s eye, without which a good thing may pass unobserved.” Joseph Addison ”Advertising is to business what steam is to machinery, the grand propelling power” Lord Macaclay Abstract: ”TO ADVERTISE OR NOT TO ADVERTISE?” is the question which continually confronts the business man. The importance of advertising has long been recognized by the more enlightened members of the business and industrial world. Strategies for a successful advertising business campaign are an important factor for every company and business. As many of you know advertising and promotion are all around us. Whether you watch television, listen to driving on the highway, flipping through a magazine or listening to radio, which is watered at each end by posts, to try to obtain a product or a service. And although there has been much discussion as to whether the advertising is effective and if there are people to buy the products concerned, the reality is that many companies spend billions of greenbacks in advertising with the hope that it will increase profits. Good advertising has the power to make people notice and buy the product or act to the advertisement. Keywords: advertising campaign, techniques, promotion methods
Advertising has evolved to be the most important marketing tool for organizations to launch their products in the market. With the print and electronic media becoming an integral part of a layman's life, advertising has assumed a crucial role in the success of new products. There is fierce competition to gain a lion's share in the market, so better the advertising strategies, higher the chances of success. Successful advertising campaigns have been a testimony to the fact that customers are kings, and once they love a product, it's sure to become a brand. Starting from soft drinks, to shampoos or luxury cars, advertising can create a world of difference in the future prospects of a product and the company. The magic of successful advertising campaigns is such that products just don't remain things, they move on to become brands or entities in the eyes of consumers. The jingles become popular among the masses and you can hear people humming the jingles or reciting the punchlines of successful advertising campaigns. Let us take a look at some of the deeper aspects of advertising campaigns.
Elements of a Successful Advertising Campaign The importance of marketing in today's business environment is undoubtedly immense. No firm can sit back and watch their competitors take over the market. The right time to launch a product is an essential factor to decide the fate of a new launch. Marketing strategies govern the success of products and advertising forms the subset of a marketing plan. 1. Importance of Market Research In the quest to maximize profits and ensure that the advertisements are able to garner huge profits, the marketing teams and ad agencies focus on market research. The importance of marketing research is such that no one can ignore it. Knowing about the target audience and understanding their needs help the marketing teams to set their sales goal in a more organized manner. Market research also helps in the launch of a product as per the requirements of the market. To thrive in a competitive market by surpassing the competitors, effective market research is required. So by analyzing various parameters, firms can come up with better decisions and options. Market research is a process of the systematic collection of data, about a particular target market, competitors, customers, market trends, etc. The aim of market research is to obtain an in-depth understanding of the particular subject. Rising competition has compelled many organizations to conduct market research. Organizations may conduct market research themselves, by appointing a market research team to work on the same. Or else, they may get it done via a market research consultancy or an agency. Market research is vital for business organizations looking out for opportunities to tap the market, for firms which have come up with an improvised product and want to evaluate its demand and for companies planning to introduce their products into the market. However, before conducting market research, it's vital to have the research objectives defined. Once the objectives have been outlined, market research can be carried out in different ways. Types of Market Research There are two methods of conducting market research: primary research and secondary research. The choice of the method depends on the research objectives. Primary Research In primary research, data is collected directly from the source. For example, if the objective of the research is to understand the demand of a particular product, then collecting feedback directly from the customer by talking to them, is called primary research. Primary research involves the collection of crucial data via interviews, surveys or focus group sessions. It's time consuming and expensive. However, it is suited for gathering specific data. Primary research can be further categorized into the qualitative and the quantitative type. Quantitative Primary Research: This type of primary research involves the collection of numerical data via surveys. The most frequently used quantitative technique is the 'market research survey'. The numerical or quantitative information obtained is then statistically analyzed. Such surveys comprise of questionnaires with closed ended questions. In a close ended question, a respondent is needed to answer by ticking one of the options given. People generally agree to cooperate, when surveys are less time-consuming. For example, a bank may generate a questionnaire, wherein its aim is to find out what people think of their services. Numerous questions may be asked in the questionnaire and the answer options are excellent, good, poor or very poor. This data obtained is analyzed
statistically and a conclusion is ascertained. The main rule followed, while conducting quantitative research is that all the respondents should be given the same questionnaire with the same set of questions. These quantitative surveys can be carried out, either face to face (asking people on the street to fill them), email, telephone or by post (self completion and posting it back). Qualitative Primary Research: This type of research involves gathering data via interviews or focus group sessions. In this type, open ended questions are included. This means the questions cannot be answered with a yes or a no. They include in-depth interviews, wherein a trained executive interviews one or more respondents. The interviewer may carry out the interview on a one to one basis, with two, triad or even 4-5 respondents. Such open ended interviews enable the researcher to receive data about the likes-dislikes, requirements, positive-negative feedback, trends and emotional motivators of the primary market. Unlike the quantitative type, this type does not comprise of a fixed set of questions. The interviewer may have a basic framework of questions ready, however, the flow of the interview is impromptu. The respondent has the freedom to express himself. This helps the interviewer understand the situation better. Focus groups are another method of carrying out qualitative research. These groups generally comprise of 6-8 respondents, led by experienced professionals (research moderators). The role of the professional is to ask general, as well as specific questions, to the group of respondents. By encouraging a discussion, they are to draw out the required information. However, since focus groups require experienced professionals, it's an expensive technique. Secondary Research In secondary research, the analysis of information that has been collected for some other purpose, is carried out. This means, that secondary research is carried out by gathering data from sources such as government publications, libraries, internet, magazines, chambers of commerce, etc. The data required may be in the form of demographic or statistical data, set of articles or some studies. Firms can analyze their target markets, evaluate competitors, assess social, political and economic factors. Data for secondary research can be obtained from a variety of sources such as: - Chambers of Commerce: Each local area comprises a chamber of commerce, which possesses information about the local businesses and local community. - Business Information Centers: Small business firms can use such centers, as they provide a large collection of books, videos, publications and other important resource materials. - Trade Associations: Trade associations provide information on industry leaders, the standards they observe, latest trends, competitors, etc. - Marketing Departments of Local Colleges: Firms can access special research projects prepared by students. - Wholesalers and Manufacturers: Firms can obtain information from wholesalers and manufacturers, regarding customer's likes and dislikes, complaints, costs, industry standards, etc. - Magazines and Newspapers: Industry journals and newspapers are a great source of crucial information. News events, latest news on politics, economic indicators, etc. are helpful for firms in understanding the market and its trends. - Competitors: Conducting research on the products or services, prices, brochures, marketing techniques, etc. helps firms understand how to augment their business. Besides the above mentioned resources, firms can obtain data from libraries, various books and publications, banks, insurance companies, real estate companies, etc. As
compared to primary research, secondary research is easier. It is less time consuming and not as expensive. However, the drawback of secondary research is that the data may not be updated and may not be customized to suit the need of the research. Since it involves the analysis of data collected by somebody else for a different purpose, the analysis may not be accurate. For example, a firm manufacturing leather bags can find out how many people buy their bags, using secondary research. However, they can't determine the amount people are willing to pay for their particular leather bag design. For firms planning to introduce a new product or service, conducting market research helps understand the customers attitude and preferences. It also minimizes the risk of incurring losses in the business. Market research conducted by either primary or secondary method is vital to any business and its objectives. 2. Marketing Mix Strategy A vital part of an effective advertising campaign is to adopt the method of marketing mix strategy during the planning phase, and implementing at the right time in an ordered manner. Marketing mix involves considering various elements of marketing like product, price, promotion and place. While product, price and promotion are easier to understand, place refers to the logistics and transportation costs of goods. The marketing teams and advertising agencies make use of the variables of marketing mix, for the success of a product. You may read more on successful marketing strategies. It is said, that 'customers are the kings' and indeed they are. The marketing departments of every firm fight tooth and nail to lure customers and increase the sales of their products. Marketing promotional methods are important and efficient marketing strategies of various companies. While millions of dollars are spent on advertising methods, promotional marketing methods are relatively less expensive and can be more effective 3. Promotion Strategies There are basically two promotion strategies; the push strategy and the pull strategy. According to the push strategy, the marketers give generous discounts and benefits to the customers, so that, the sales can be increased drastically. One of the most successful strategies, the method of giving discounts is often successful for most of the firms. In the push strategy, main focus is on reducing costs of the advertising. The other strategy, the pull strategy minimizes the use of different channels and the major focus is on advertising the product. It's goal is to create a potential market for the products of the firm. Marketing Promotion Methods #1 Advertising Advertising is an expensive method of promotional marketing, wherein, the products are made to reach a large number of people. For example, by using electronic media, TV, radio, press and outdoor hoardings, advertisers target the audience and try to create an impact on customers. Every business empire has earned its name, fame and money through hard work and by catering to customer's demand with quality and quantity. However, every small organization needs to make its name in the market by, first, catching the buyer's eye. It is at this juncture, that, promotional advertising ideas play a huge role, in defining the market for small businesses. Every business uses some sort of a promotion idea to strike their target audience. Promotional advertising is a tool used to harp the buyer with the idea of buying the product. Promotional advertising ideas, are used to instigate the user about the product,
arouse interest about the product and create demand for the product. There are many ways of promotional advertising for businesses. The most effective ways of promotional advertising is promotional gifts and promotional giveaways. Promotional Advertising Gifts We all feel good when we receive gifts, thus, promotional gifts are the most effective way of creating a feel-good factor among the buyer about the company. Promotional advertising gifts open the buyer's mind to the brand, company name and the slogan. The buyer, with the help of these promotional advertising gifts, gets acquainted to a particular logo and a brand name. Moreover, as the promotional advertising gifts are given away for free, the potential buyer readily accepts it. Promotional Advertising Giveaways Promotional advertising giveaways are interactive promotional advertising ideas. These are similar to promotional advertising gifts, but not the same. These giveaways are distributed in the form of prizes to prospective customers. Some prizes are meant for practical purposes and some are just for fun. Everyday office supplies, stationary printed with company name, calenders, caps, t-shirts, towels, shopping vouchers for a particular brand are some of the examples of promotional advertising giveaways. Ideas for Promoting Business Contests Contests are one of the best promotional advertising ideas for companies manufacturing home supplies. Conduct cooking contests for home makers, and distribute free cooking wares as promotional advertising gifts. The winner will get publicized, along with brand name of the company. Newsletters Newsletters are typical ideas for promoting business. Newsletters convey to the readers, who may become your potential customers, your know-how and about your company. This is the best way for banks, brokers, institutions and agencies to promote themselves. Flyers Flyers are pamphlets which I guess most of us are familiar with. They are small printed sheets of information about the company and the product. Distribution of flyers is very easy, as it can be done through newspaper vendors and or by hiring part-time employees. Giving out flyers in newspapers is the best way of ensuring that flyers reach the prospective consumers. Discount Coupons Discount coupons or free coupons work in favor of small retailers, especially, associated with lifestyle items. Don't we flock around clothing stores at the sight of a discount offer? So, give out 10-15% discount coupons to people to attract their attention and to make your name. Other Promotional Advertising Ideas Conducting seminars, demonstrations, speeches, publishing articles, newspaper advertisements, internet advertising, giving bonuses and networking are some more ideas for promoting business at your disposal. Marketing Promotion Methods #2 Personal Selling One of the oldest ways of direct marketing promotion is to sell the products by direct interaction between the seller and buyer. It is believed to be the most difficult form of marketing, as it requires skills of persuasion and excellent communication skills.
You may be a person who does not like to negotiate, but often ends up in positions where negotiation becomes necessary. Most people wrongly think that negotiation skills are only for salespeople. But, imagine a situation where you are planning to sell your house. Now, without negotiation you might end up getting a price that's much lesser than what your house deserves. Think of the losses you might have to incur, just because of poor negotiating skills. Thus, reasonably good negotiation skills can benefit you greatly, even if you are not in the sales business. For people in sales businesses, excellent negotiation skills are a must. Your sales depend upon your 'sales talks' and the price you fetch for your product, entirely depends upon your negotiation skills. I consider following guidelines for effective sales negotiation skills and techniques. Understand Your Product and Evaluate Customer Feedback The first step towards excellent sales negotiation, is to thoroughly understand your product. Study your product or service well, and evaluate the values that you have to offer. Seeking feedback from your customers is crucial to sales success. Your customers can give you a better idea about your weak points, and the areas where your competitors score over you. Always be open to suggestions and criticism from customers. They are pivotal in improving your product. Understanding your weak points can help you in the preparation of an explanation and swiftly sail you through tricky questions, during a negotiation. Understand Your Competitors Conduct a market research and find out who the major competitors are, in your chosen product line. Research the tactics of these contenders and plan accordingly. Identify your strong areas and assert them positively, on the negotiation table. Refrain from criticizing your competitor's product, as that would make you look too desperate to sell your product. Plan a Sales Strategy Plan a sales strategy with your marketing team. Develop a line upon which to act, during a negotiation. Adhere to those guidelines while you are actually negotiating. Understand Your Customers Only customers can tell you what motivates them to buy your product. Hence, ask them key questions and try to figure out what this motivation is. You may get a general idea, depending upon your sales expertise and past experience. Understanding their motivation can determine your next step in a negotiation process. Focus on Value and Not on Price Always emphasize upon the values and the benefits your product is likely to offer to the customers. Smartly avoid any price talk, especially when your product in leading in that area. If possible, dodge direct price related questions. The customer is anyways going to get it straight, as the price is the foremost factor that influences his decision to buy. Until then though, keep flashing your 'value card'. Do Your Homework Last but not the least, do your homework properly. Asses all the situations and prepare yourself accordingly. The other party is likely to come well prepared as well, hence have a back up plan ready to deal with their plan. On the Negotiation Table No matter how hard you prepare for a particular negotiation meeting, it is only your actual performance on the table that determines your sales. Do not chicken out if you find the situation going out of hand. Stick to your plan as far as possible, but do not hesitate to take drastic decisions, if you must. If you do not see a profitable situation for yourself, try to reduce your losses and attain a win-win situation for both the parties. Negotiation
skills are seldom inborn. You have to take efforts to develop these particular skills. Excellent negotiation skills can take you a long way in your business. Marketing Promotion Methods #3: Contests One of the effective, popular and most preferred form of promotional methods is to arrange certain contests for the customers. We all will agree to the fact that winning surprise prizes in a shopping mall or fashion store is simply exciting. One of the most attractive marketing strategies, organizing contests among the customers is a brilliant way to promote the products. Marketing Promotion Methods #4: Pamphlets/Coupons In the quest to attract more customers, companies distribute coupons and pamphlets about the products. The customers are either given basic information about the newly launched products or they are provided with discounted coupons on the purchase of some accessories/apparels. Coupons make for an effective marketing plan for small business units. Marketing Promotion Methods #5: Free Samples The idea of freely distributing products, sounds weird and crazy for any company, however, there is a certain element of truth in the fact that marketing firms have gained substantial promotion through the idea of free samples. While, it is not logical to just distribute your products, you can devise a strategy, so that, the idea of free samples doesn't incur losses for your firm. While evaluating different methods of promotion in marketing, one should realize these strategies are not set formulas or recipes for the successful launch and eventually high sales of the product. No doubt, these strategies are effective, but there are various market forces that can effect the sales prospects of firms. These were some of the marketing promotion methods, that firms adopt to increase their sales. At the end, however, it is the customer who is the king and you have to leave it all to them. Tips for Successful Advertising Some tips for successful advertising campaigns are mentioned below: • Focus on the human behavior and things that drive consumers to purchase a particular kind of product. • Work as a team, because being a creative field, the entire team needs to work on the ideas and innovations. • Don't give wrong information to customers about the products. Be true to your customers! • Study about the popular advertisements and research on the methods they have adopted to establish the product in the market. Take ideas, and as far as possible come up with your own creative method of advertising! • Adopt various types of advertising techniques and keep an eye on the one which works best. • Make the headlines and catchy phrases smart enough to grab attention. Remember AIDA (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action)! • Since advertising is expensive, focus on your USP (Unique Selling Proposition), and aim to hit the bull's eyes.
â&#x20AC;˘ Chalk out the marketing promotion methods that include various types of advertising. It can be said that advertising techniques are tools that are used to generate more sales. It also acts as a medium for businesses to make the masses aware of the new products which they may have launched. The major points which you need to keep in mind while creating a successful advertisement are that it should attract the attention of the people, the viewers should be able to feel the need and change the way the end users think. All these can lead to better revenue which will give you better market share. There are several advertising techniques which you can use like internet advertising, writing mails, TV and newspaper advertising, etc. If you are a small business owner, then you should try and know the advertising techniques for small business, so that you can get better returns from your business. Effective Advertising Techniques There are different types of advertising techniques and it's due to the effectiveness of these techniques, people are come to know about the different products in the market, besides the services provided. Newspaper and TV advertisement are some of the oldest advertisement techniques used. With the advent of internet modern advertisement methods like social networking websites, search engine advertising and internet affiliate marketing has gained popularity. Let's take a look at each of these techniques and their effectiveness in today's world. Internet Advertisement Advertising in the sponsored links of major search engines, has become one of the most effective method of internet advertising. The reach of the internet has become so huge that every person in any nook and corner of the world can view the advertisement of your products. Moreover, if you own a website, you can use search engine optimization techniques, wherein your website would be in the top 10 results of search engines. Getting to the first few rankings helps you to get a wider audience, which in turn can lead to more sales. Other forms of advertising include pay per click advertising and email advertising, which can also be tried out. Newspaper Advertising Advertising in newspapers have been used for several generations now and has been one of the most effective means of communicating with the audience. To create a successful advertisement in the print medium, you need to know some of the most effective print advertising techniques, like creating catchy slogans, inclusion of an offer, promotional advertising, etc. These techniques need to be used in other forms of advertising as well, as the amount of time spent on an ad by the end user is very less. Mail Advertising Direct mail advertising is a common advertising techniques and has also become a popular means of connecting to a wide range of audiences. In this technique, you get the mailing addresses of as many people as possible in a particular locality and send them a flier or brochure of your products. You can also send postcards, but make sure that there is enough content, as content is read. TV Advertising Advertisement on the television gives a semblance of a brand, and so it's important that you use this medium to the hilt. However, it's not that without advertising in this medium, a brand would not be created, there are several companies which don't use this medium and still are huge. The most important thing is having a compelling offer, which the audience would be interested in. Moreover you need to give your contact information be it your website address, telephone number, in that short period of time. Other than these,
there are other mediums which you can use, and these include banner advertising, public relations, radio advertising and word of mouth advertising. What are Banner Ads? Banner ads are in many ways similar to the traditional printed advertisements in magazines. However, they do differ in several ways from the traditional mode of advertising. When a banner advertisement is placed on any particular website, a click on the ad directly transports you to the website of the product that is being advertised. This means, you are saved the time of going to a store to purchase the product that has been advertised. Moreover, a banner ad is definitely more attractive than a regular printed ad, because a lot of graphics and animation can be added to it, to make it eye-catching and visually appealing. The location of the ad, however, is limited to one single place. There are, of course, instances of banner advertising where the graphics and animation are simply overdone. When a customer clicks on a banner ad, he is directed to the website of the product that has been advertised. Banner advertisements are based on the concept of pay per click advertising. This gives the publishing website income every time the ad is clicked, as a customer has been directed to the advertiser's website. Whether or not this click on the ad gets converted into a sale is immaterial. The publishing website will be given a payment, on the basis of the prevalent banner advertising rates. However, the banner advertising effectiveness will be determined for the advertising website, only when the click gets converted into a sale. If the web surfer does not click on the advertisement, the banner ad does try to ensure that the image of the promotional product has been registered, and that the web surfer will sometime in the future, visit the website directly. Then, the effectiveness of banner advertising is measured by the number of times the ad has been clicked, the number of times a visitor has been directed to the advertiser's website, and the ratio of the clicks to the page views. This gives them an exact idea of whether a visitor has been directed by a banner ad, or by some other medium. This rate ranges around only .1% and is rarely higher. Lastly, whether or not a visit to the website through the banner ad was converted to a sale is calculated. This gives an actual measure of banner advertising effectiveness. How Effective is Banner Advertising? The reality about banner advertising is that because there are so many of them out there on the worldwide web, they are usually ignored by customers. This is because they are usually very annoying, especially those banner ads that enlarge when you visit a page, and when you have to manually close them. Several times, banner ads are linked to pages that are absolutely unrelated to the product that is being advertised. This causes further frustration to the customer. It is thus concluded, that a banner ad, though considered as one of the best Internet advertising techniques, does not generate much revenue in the long run. However, there are still some ways in which the effectiveness of banner ad campaigns can be improved, and used to generate overall sales. â&#x20AC;˘ Target the Right Audience: Place your banner ads on relevant websites. For instance, if you are selling a weight loss product, place the ad on a website related to health and fitness. People are more likely to take your advertisements seriously when they see them at the right place at the right time. â&#x20AC;˘ Keep it Simple: Do not make your banner ads too fancy. You must understand that the loud graphics, the flashing images, and all the animation is extremely frustrating, and no one really has the patience to see and understand what your product is all about. The bottom line is to convey your message in as few words as
possible, keep it relevant to the product that is being advertised, and be attractive yet simple. Subtle messages will not be understood in banner ads. Also remember to include your company name and your company logo on the ad. Even if a customer does not click on the ad immediately, the logo will leave an impression, and he will definitely come back to you some time. â&#x20AC;˘ Create Urgency: When you include text like 'limited period offer', or 'offer valid until stocks last', you are more likely to generate sales through banner ads. This gives the customer the idea that the product is indeed limited, and that he should make the most of the time during which it is available. â&#x20AC;˘ Size Matters: Try to use a strategically located larger banner so that it is visible to the customer. It will definitely be more effective than a smaller banner in some corner of a web page. Though this usually depends on the website that publishes your ad, if it is visually appealing, it is bound to win an important spot on the web page. â&#x20AC;˘ Just Clicks Are Not Enough: Banner advertising effectiveness cannot only be measured by the number of clicks on the ad. The mere presence of an ad at all times, gets it registered in the mind of the customer, which may then transform into a sale at some particular time in the future. It is simply a strategy you will have to attempt, so that it eventually converts into a sale. You may see a lot of figures that tell you that banner ads are actually not very effective, and the conversion rate is very low. However, understand that a banner advertisement is only as effective as you make it. Just like any other form of advertising, banner advertising is based on certain strategies, which when employed in the right manner, can definitely improve the banner advertising effectiveness Persuasive Advertising Techniques: Tips With the above mentioned methods in mind, you need to follow certain guidelines for your advertising to be effective. These include: Unique Offer - Whatever you offer should be unique in such a manner that no one currently offers such a price. Without an offer, no one may be interested in your products, and so may not lead to the kind of sales you deserve. Unique offers may include things like free delivery or may be a discount. By offering something unique, you may be known as the only one where that particular thing can be found. Create Curiosity - Whether it's the traditional or contemporary forms of advertising, the end user goes through the ad for a few seconds only. It's in those few seconds, that you need to create an impression, so you need to provide a headline for what you offer. Some of the few words which can make your ads interesting, include 'unique', 'first-time', 'just arrived', etc. Use the Word 'You' - This creates a sense of connectivity with the reader, whereby they may read your advertisement with some interest. One important thing which you need to remember is 'what is in it for them'. So these were some advertising techniques you can use. Whatever you use, make sure you know the tastes of the audience, or else your product may not attract the kind of interest you may want. Everybody listens to the radio, some like me wake up to it, others have it on at home all day and the others use it while driving. But whatever its use, the point is everybody listens to the radio. This is why people consider radio advertising so powerful, its because it reaches the masses. More and more companies are choosing radio advertising because of
this and also because it is cost effective and you have the choice of advertising locally or nation wide. Pros and Cons of Radio Advertising No one is saying the world of the radio is perfect. Like all things, it also had its advantages and disadvantages. The radio is perfect for small business operations, but most won’t realize, here are the advantages of radio advertising: • Cheap – radio ads are cheaper to produce and can reach millions of people at the same time. The relative cost effectiveness is as compared to television ads, which are so much more expensive than any other form of advertising. • Impact – the impact made by a radio ad is greater than the impact made by any other medium of advertising. This is because radio ads are played at a time that can target a particular section of society or the masses. And also because they are repeated every hour or half an hour, so the impact is maximum. • Entertaining – leaving television ads aside, radio ads are the most entertaining way of advertising. The print media can get dull and boring, where as the radio allows for creativity in advertisements. • Cost effective – for those on a budget, radio advertising is very cost effective. It is cheaper than television ads and more attractive than print. It is the most preferred medium of advertising for local small businesses. Now that we have spoken about the pros of radio advertising, it is only fair to talk about the flip side or the cons. Radio advertising does have certain disadvantage, these are: • Short life span – unless it is a very catchy jingle on the radio, most people forget about radio ads in a day. This is because most are jingles that last for 30 seconds and are heard a few times a day and then they go off the air. The life span of that ad is over and done with and people will just as soon forget about the ad and the product or service it was for. • Cost fluctuation – the problem with radio advertising is that the cost can fluctuate depending on the time slot selected. I am ending this article with ”The great art of writing advertisements is the finding the proper method to catch the reader s eye, without which a good thing may pass unobserved.” Joseph Addison
References: [1.] Kotler, Ph, 2010, Marketing Management. 13th edition. New Jersey, U.S.A, Prentice Hall, [2.] Grimaldi J.,2009, The Art Of Advertising, London, T.B.Brown [3.] Taylor J.W, 2009 , How To Create A Successful Advertising Plan [4.] http://jobfunctions.bnet.com/abstract.aspx?docid=66076 "