NAME : PROGRAM : COURSE : REG NUMBER: [Q1].Most decisions by marketing managers have ethical and social consequences. An ethics perspective involves addressing the morality of marketing decisions. Given extensive ethics perspectives on marketing and discuss the importance of legal and ethical considerations for marketing communications as well as advertising and public relations.  [Q2].Marketing as an organizational philosophy and a societal process is related to the way marketing is performed by organizations and individuals. Discuss marketing as a process in the following areas; (i)Consumer buying behavior. (ii)Market segmentation. (iii)Marketing channels.  Marks……………………………………………………………………………. [Q1] Simply stated, ethics refers to the study of moral principles, or “right and wrong in professional conduct or organizational behavior”, therefore marketing ethics is all about marketers doing the “right thing”. Exactly what the right thing is is not always completely clear cut since what is “right” may vary depending on whether you are looking at it from the perspective of the company, its customers or the society in which they both exist. There is however several basic principles involved in ethical marketing that is, taking responsibility, dealing fairly and respecting consumers’ rights among others. In the issue of taking responsibility, marketers need to take responsibility for their products and their decisions. In the past marketers have often responded to social concern about particular products by defending them on the basis of “It was what the customer wanted”. Also by looking at the issue of dealing fairly, marketers need to be honest and fair in their dealings with all stakeholders (Capacino, 1994, p224). This means that products must be fit for use and accurately described, and contracts both formal and implicit should be drawn up in good faith and honored and lastly by looking at the issue of respecting consumer rights, marketers should take into account the right of redress, the right to information and the right to privacy. Most decisions made by marketing managers have ethical and social consequences. Some decisions made by marketing managers such as target market selection have ethical consequences. Marketers have been criticized recently for the selection of target markets, especially for targeting disadvantaged or vulnerable segments of a society with harmful products. Examples include marketing sugared cereals and junk foods to children or cigarettes and alcoholic beverages to ethnic minorities and socioeconomically disadvantaged groups. The use of such target marketing strategies in an international context also has been excoriated. Examples include marketing Tobacco products and chemicals and pesticides to developing countries. These practices have become social issues because of the products’ potential to harm and the disadvantage of these markets in the world. Predatory pricing is also another decision made by marketing managers which oftenly results in ethical and social consequences. Predatory Pricing In developing nations where the bulk of the populace is still employed in small and medium enterprises, the use of predatory pricing by large multinational corporations in order to wipe out competition is an ethical issue (Ewin,2012,p157). While proponents of no holds barred pricing would attribute this to an unfettered free market, the fact remains that the larger issue is the threat of wiping out the livelihood of a large number of people. Some authorities view dumping as a kind of predatory pricing especially in the context of international trade. It occurs when manufacturers exports a product to another country at a price either below the price charged in its home market or in quantities that cannot be explained through normal market competition. If this marketing decision causes harm or threatens the domestic industry in the importing country can be considered as a social consequence for example the exportation of Chinese products like toothpastes to developing countries like Zimbabwe among others which are causing harm to the citizens of the importing country, however under the World Trade Organization dumping is not prohibited but it is condemned if it causes material injuries in the domestic industry of the importing country. These above mentioned marketing decisions are not the only ones, some of which are price discrimination, price fixing, price skimming, price war, variable pricing and bid rigging which may results in ethical and social consequences. A brief and concise definition of an ethical perspective is that it is a moral view. Examples of ethical perspectives of marketing are that being dishonest and lying to consumers is wrong because it is morally wrong to mislead consumers about the features and functionalities of a product because if the consumers find out about the product they may sue the company responsible for misleading them and forcing them to buy a product which does not meet their needs, for example Nokia in trying to revive its business by challenging Apple Inc.’s products such as the iPhone published misleading marketing materials for its product called the Nokia Lumia 920 Smartphone which is morally wrong because they tried to revive its business by making false publications about the product in the expense of misleading the consumers. Simply stated Marketing Communications or MarCom or Integrated Marketing Communications are messages and related media used to communicate with a market. Marketing communications is the "promotion" part of the "Marketing Mix" or the "four Ps" that is, price, place, promotion and product. These messages are in the form of advertisements found in different types of media such as televisions, magazines, radios among others. Marketing Communications is the department that deals in handling all communications for the company. Depending on the kind of company and the industry they are in, this department is sometimes called the corporate communications or the product marketing division at times. In branding, every opportunity to impress the organization’s or the individual’s brand upon the customer is called a brand touch point or brand contact point. Examples include everything from TV and other media advertisements, event sponsorships, webinars, and personal selling to even product packaging. Thus, every experiential opportunity that an organization creates for its stakeholders or customers is a brand touch point. Hence, it is vitally important for brand strategists and managers to survey their organization’s entire brand touch points and control for the stakeholder's or customer's experience. Marketing communications, as a vehicle of an organization's brand management, is concerned with the promotion of an organization's brand, product or service to stakeholders and prospective customers through these touch points. Since the marketing communications is responsible for all the communications that occur in an organization it is therefore important for them to make legal and ethical considerations in their operations. This taking of legal and ethical issues into consideration is vitally important because it helps an organization in coming up with advertisements with messages which does not in turn result in undesirabilities such as loss of market share and sales revenue for example if a company is advertising its products or services it should try by all means to avoid tarnishing the image of the competitors products or services as this may be seen as unethical and this may in turn result in loss of market share and thus sales revenue. Also a firm should try by all means to conduct its advertisements in the most acceptable or appropriate manner for example it should try to avoid scenes of nudity where unnecessary as this maybe regarded by consumers as unethical and this may have negative implications on the organization and they should make sure that their advertisements are in accordance with the laws and regulations in the advertising act , therefore marketing communications should always take into consideration the legal and ethical issues in its marketing decisions in order to achieve the most desirable outcomes. Now by looking at advertising, a precise definition states that advertising is a form of communication for marketing and used to encourage or persuade an audience that is, viewers, readers or listeners and sometimes a specific group to continue or take some new action. (Kotler, 2000, p281) defined advertising as any paid form of nonpersonal presentation and promotion of ideas, goods, or services by an identified sponsor. Advertisers include not only business firms but also museums, charitable organizations, and government agencies that direct messages to target publics. Advertising messages are usually paid for by sponsors and viewed via various traditional media including mass media such as newspapers, magazines, outdoor advertising or direct mail or new media such as blogs, websites or text messages therefore, marketing managers should take into account legal and ethical issues when advertising in order to achieve the most desirable outcomes. The advertising industry operates within strict regulations which are legislated in the advertising act and is also monitored by the Standards Association of Zimbabwe (SAZ). Even with truth-in-advertising laws in place, advertisers have significant leeway to violate the ethical standards of a wide range of consumers. Advertisers have to be especially careful to act ethically at all times, taking extra care when advertising to children, advertising potentially harmful products and using psychological tactics to stimulate demand. Having a list of ethical and legal issues at hand when creating advertisements can help them to craft legal, responsible ad messages. Most of the times children are not likely to understand exaggerated statements or images, citing the example that children may believe a toy helicopter to come fully assembled when in fact assembly is required. This interpretation of the law completely ignores the unethical ramifications of purely legal advertising, such as building brand loyalty in children before they even understand what a brand is, encouraging children to develop negative self images or getting children hooked on products that can impede social development. The best way to act ethically in this area is to advertise to parents, not children hence there is need for marketing managers to take into consideration legal and ethical issues when making their advertising decisions. Also advertising tactics present additional ethical challenges. Advertisers have a range of less than ethical yet legal tools at their disposal, including subliminal advertising, emotional appeals, taking advantage of less educated individuals, spreading propaganda for political campaigns, and other tactics ethical advertisers consistently refrain from using. At the end of the day, consumers will be more attracted to companies that do not use underhanded, psychologically manipulative tactics to gain their business hence the need for marketing managers to take into account the legal and ethical issues when making advertising decisions. Public relations involves communicating in public, which means a business will be subject to a range of ethical and legal considerations. Laws on defamation, privacy and copyright will apply to a company when transmitting information or expressing its opinions. An organization should always remember that every message it releases influences consumers' opinions about it therefore it should keep its public statements consistent with its brand and key messages. It should try not to distract consumers from its messages by commenting on unrelated or unworthy issues (Kotler, 2000, p293).An organization should make sure that its public relations reflects the ethics of its business and it must be clear on its public relations principles for example, choosing not to make negative comments about customers, competitors or suppliers will strengthen its credibility and reduce risks of damage to its reputation. Certain public relations recommendations such as staying honest and consistent with its messages should be taken into account also because consumers can easily spot double standards, distortions and hypocritical statements. Also an organization should not fight its competitors in public. If an organization keeps its criticisms and disagreements with its competitors and suppliers out of the spotlight it shows good grace and it keeps its public relations professional(Newman,1997,p267). An organization should therefore always keep its public relations focused and professional hence the importance of considering legal and ethical issues when making marketing decisions on the part of the marketing managers. [Q2]. A precise definition of Marketing by the American Marketing Association(AMA) states that it is a process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods and services to create exchanges to satisfy both individual and organizational objectives. Marketing as an organizational philosophy and societal process is related to the way marketing is performed by organizations and individuals. Marketing as a societal process is related to the way marketing is performed by organizations and individuals in such a way that a company should make good marketing decisions by considering consumers' wants, the company's requirements, and society's long-term interests. It is closely linked with the principles of corporate social responsibility and of sustainable development. The societal marketing concept holds that the organization’s task is to determine the needs, wants, and interests of a target market and to deliver the desired satisfactions more effectively and efficiently than competitors in a way that preserves or enhances the consumer’s and the society’s well-being. By looking also at marketing as an organizational philosophy we see that a firm's marketing department is often seen as of prime importance within the functional level of an organization. Information from an organization's marketing department would be used to guide the actions of other departments within the firm. As an example, a marketing department could ascertain through marketing research that consumers desired a new type of product, or a new usage for an existing product. With this in mind, the marketing department would inform the research and development department to create a prototype of a product or service based on consumers' new desires, the production department would then start to manufacture the product, while the marketing department would focus on the promotion, distribution, pricing, and so forth of the product. Additionally, a firm's finance department would be consulted, with respect to securing appropriate funding for the development, production and promotion of the product, therefore we see that marketing as an organizational philosophy and as a societal process is related to the way marketing is performed by organizations and individuals(Scholl et al,1993,p321). Simply stated, consumer buying behavior is the study of individuals, groups, or organizations and the processes they use to select, secure, and dispose of products, services, experiences, or ideas to satisfy needs and the impacts that these processes have on the consumer and society. It blends elements from psychology, sociology, social anthropology and economics. There are four types of consumer buying behavior which are “routine response or programmed behavior” which involves buying low involvement frequently purchased low cost items which need very little search and decision effort and purchased almost automatically. Examples include soft drinks, snack foods, milk among others. The second type of consumer buying behavior is “limited decision making” which involves buying product occasionally and requires a moderate amount of time for information gathering. Examples include Clothes. The third type of consumer buying behavior is the “extensive decision making” which involves unfamiliar, expensive or infrequently bought products and it also involves spending a lot of time seeking information and deciding and the examples include cars, homes, computers and education. The fourth and last type of consumer buying behavior is “impulse buying” which involves no conscious planning. Marketing is considered a process in consumer buying behavior in such a way that it attempts to understand the buyer decision making process, both individually and in groups, studies characteristics of individual consumers such as demographics and behavioral variables in an attempt to understand people's wants and it also tries to assess influences on the consumer from groups such as family, friends, reference groups, and society in general. There are six stages to the consumer buying decision process. Actual purchasing is only one stage of the process. These stages include problem recognition, information search, evaluation of alternatives, purchase decision, purchase and post purchase evaluation. In problem recognition that is where we determine the difference between the desired state and the actual condition for example hunger stimulates your need to eat. This can be stimulated by the marketer through product information. By looking at the second stage which is information search, this is where internal search is carried out and also external search if more information is needed. In external search information is obtained from friends and relatives by word of mouth and from marketer dominated sources such as comparison shopping, public sources among others. A successful information search leaves a buyer with possible alternatives (Shaver,2007,p226). The third stage in the consumer buying decision process is the evaluation of alternatives. Here there is need to establish criteria for evaluating the features the buyer wants or does not want and rank or weight alternatives or even resume search. In this stage marketers try to influence by framing alternatives. The next stage in the consumer buying decision process is purchase decision. In this stage consumers choose buying alternatives and it includes product, package, store, method of purchase among others. By looking at the fifth stage of the consumer buying decision process which is “purchase”, this is where the consumer makes the actual purchase and the purchase may differ from decision, time lapse between purchase decision and purchase and product availability. Lastly by looking at post purchase evaluation which is the sixth and final stage in the consumer buying decision process, here the consumer determines if he or she has made the right decision. This can be reduced by warranties, after sales communication and so many others. Having looked at the above mentioned six stages in the consumer buying decision process we see that marketing is a process in consumer buying behavior because for a purchase to occur it involves not just an instant decision but a series of stages will have to take place until the consumer has finally made a decision after carefully scrutinizing all the available alternatives. Market segmentation is the process of defining and subdividing a large homogenous market into clearly identifiable segments having similar needs, wants, or demand characteristics. Its objective is to design a marketing mix that precisely matches the expectations of customers in the targeted segment(Consumer.2012).Market segmentation states that a segment must fulfill the following requirements if it is to be successfully exploited. It must be measurable, it must be large enough to earn profit, it must be stable enough that it does not vanish after some time, it must be possible to reach potential customers via the organization's promotion and distribution channel, it must be internally homogeneous, it must be externally heterogeneous, that is, potential customers from different segments have different quality preferences, it must respond consistently to a given market stimulus, it must be reached by market intervention in a cost-effective manner and it must be useful in deciding on the marketing mix. Consumer markets are segmented using the following basis which are geographic segmentation, demographic segmentation, behavioral segmentation and psychological segmentation. In geographic segmentation the market is segmented according to geographic criteria that is, nations, states, regions, countries, cities, neighborhoods, or zip codes. Demographic segmentation consists of dividing the market into groups based on variables such as age, gender, family size, income, occupation, education, religion, race and nationality. In Behavioral segmentation consumers are divided into groups according to their knowledge of, attitude towards, use of or response to a product. It is actually based on the behavior of the consumer and lastly psychological segmentation is based on the personality types of individuals in the segment for example home insurance market might segment its market into those who are afraid of crime, afraid of national disaster or afraid of accidental damage to their property. Marketing is regarded as a process in market segmentation because it involves a series of steps to be taken in order to successfully exploit a certain segment. The first step to be taken in market segmentation is the establishment of a sample of customers which will represent the different decision makers found in the specified market referred to as micro segments, with the difference between them being the key features they use to discriminate between competing offers and the importance of these features. The second step involves the recording of personal details about the decision makers including their company details if appropriate which can then be used to identify them. For each completed micro segment, add some details about who it represents using applicable profiling characteristics as these may not apply to every customer in the micro segment then there is need to indicate the proportion each characteristic represents. Knowing how to identify and reach the members of each concluding segment will be a crucial element to the success of a segmented approach to marketing. The standard categories for profiling customers are demographic or firmographic, geographic, geodemographic and psychographic. The third step involves understanding the real needs of customers and then lists the benefits they are seeking, along with the importance of these benefits for each micro segment. The forth stage in the market segmentation process involves bringing together those micro segments that illustrate similar patterns of importance for the benefits in order to form clusters. Depending on the number of micro segments a firm will be working with, this may be possible to execute manually. The simplest approach is to represent the importance levels for each segment’s decisive buying criteria in a way which enables you to look for matching patterns across the micro segments. Once the clusters have been formed the information associated with each cluster’s micro segments that is size, decisive buying criteria importance levels and profiling characteristics should be consolidated. In fifth step there is need to verify that the concluding clusters can be regarded as segments and with the segments uncovered it is time to identify which of them you should be targeting. The sixth step involves the establishment of the attractiveness of each segment to your company based on how well each of them meets your requirements. Here you list the factors that are important to your company when having to decide where it should focus its resources, along with their relative importance to each other. Each segment is then assessed against these factors in terms of how well it can met your requirements and by taking the relative importance of these factors into account an attractiveness score is determined and the results are then transposed onto the vertical axis of a portfolio matrix as this is a useful tool for constructing a strategic picture of your market. The last step involves determining the relative competitive strength of your company for each segment based on how well you, compared with your competitors, meet their requirements. The ability of your company to deliver against the buying criteria of each segment is assessed from the segment’s perspective and by taking the relative importance of these criteria into account, a competitiveness score is determined. This is also determined for each of your main competitors. A relative competitiveness score for your company is then calculated for each segment by comparing your competitiveness score with the highest score of the competitors. The results are then transposed onto the horizontal axis of the portfolio matrix containing the segment attractiveness scores and the points of intersection for each segment are identified on the matrix. A circle can then be drawn at each intersection to represent the size of the segment it relates to therefore having implemented the above mentioned series of steps of market segmentation, it also shows that marketing is a process in marketing segmentation because a firm does not just target a certain group of people at random without analyzing the needs and wants of that particular group of people and also without analyzing its resources in order to determine if they will be able to satisfy the needs of that particular group therefore there is a need for a firm to implement all of the above mentioned stages in the market segmentation process if it is to achieve its objectives. Now by looking at marketing channels which are a set of practices or activities necessary to transfer the ownership of goods, and to move goods, from the point of production to the point of consumption and, as such, which consists of all the institutions and all the marketing activities in the marketing process. A marketing channel is a useful tool for management. Marketing channels serves a lot roles in marketing strategies and these roles include linking producers to buyers, performing sales, advertising and promotion, influencing the firm's pricing strategy, affecting product strategy through branding, policies, willingness to stock and customizing profits, installing, maintaining, offering credit among others. A marketing channel can be as short as being direct from the vendor to the consumer or may include several inter-connected usually independent but mutually dependent intermediaries such as wholesalers, distributors, agents, retailers. Each intermediary receives the item at one pricing point and moves it to the next higher pricing point until it reaches the final buyer (Armstrong.2009) .Market factors such as business users, geographically concentrated, extensive technical knowledge and regular servicing required and large orders influences short term channels. Short term products are influenced by factors such as perishable, complex, and expensive. Short term producer factors include whether the manufacturer has adequate resources to perform channel functions, broad product line, and channel control is important. Short term competitive factors involve manufacturing feeling satisfied with marketing intermediaries' performance in promoting products. There are so many different distribution channels and a distribution channel can have several stages depending on how many organizations are involved in it. These marketing channels include the channel from the producer to the whosaler to the retailer to the consumer. This channel contains two stages between producer and consumer that are a wholesaler and a retailer. A wholesaler typically buys and stores large quantities of several producers’ goods and then breaks into bulk deliveries to supply retailers with smaller quantities. For small retailers with limited order quantities, the use of wholesalers makes economic sense. The second distribution channel is from the producer to the retailer to the consumer. This channel contains one intermediary. In consumer markets, this is typically a retailer. The consumer electrical goods market is a typical example of this type of marketing channel(Consumer,2012). The third marketing channel is from the producer and directly to the consumer. It is often called a direct marketing channel since it has no intermediary levels. In this case the manufacturer sells directly to customers. An example of a direct marketing channel would be a factory outlet store. Many holiday companies also market direct to consumers bypassing a traditional retail intermediary that is, the travel agent. The above mentioned three marketing channels are illustrated in the diagram below. Having noted the above mentioned types of marketing channels we see that for a consumer to acquire the products or services he or she desires, it is not just an instant event that take place but however, a series of steps or stages has to be taken into consideration for him or her to acquire the products or services that he or she desires that is, from the producer or manufacturer through the intermediaries until the products or services have reached the final consumer therefore marketing is regarded as a process in marketing channels or distribution channels. All in all, marketing is regarded as a process in consumer buying behavior, market segmentation and marketing channels because for a consumer to make a purchase he or she will have to take a number of steps into consideration until he or she has made a final decision and sometimes the outright purchase may be different from the purchase decision due to a variety of factors. Secondly a firm does not just target any particular group of people without carefully scrutinizing its resources and also the needs of consumers in that particular group therefore a firm will have to implement a series of stages until it has made an informed decision on which segment to target and lastly for the goods and services to be readily available for purchase or rendering these goods or the services will have to pass through a lot of phases until they get to the final consumer therefore this series of phases that these goods will have to pass through shows that marketing is a process and not a once off thing in all the above mentioned three marketing concepts. REFERENCE Armstrong, G. (2009). Marketing: an introduction (European Ed.). Harlow, England. Financial Times Prentice Hall. Capacino, W.C. (1994)."The Changing Role of the Distributor."Marketing Management. New York. Prentice Hall. Consumer. (2012).Consumer Behavior. 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