Setting the marketing objectives


The business unit is now ready to formulate its marketing objectives. The contours of marketing objectives will emanate from the corporate-level objectives and strategy. The corporations would have already offered the direction in which the particular business should move. It is from this direction that the given business unit drawn its objectives. In actual practice, however, the journey from corporate-level directions to specific marketing objectives for the unit is not so simple and direct. The business unit has to figure out its marketing objectives after weighing the opportunities available in the environment, the threats, the force of competition, the resources available and the capabilities of its marketing organization.

Marketing Objectives Take the Cue from Corporate Decisions on Strategic Business Units(SBU)

Marketing objectives of a business unit take the cue from the basic decisions taken at the corporate level regarding the future of the various businesses of the enterprise. As a part of the strategic planning process, a multi-business corporation decides the business that should be nurtured and developed, those businesses that should be merely maintained and the businesses that have to be phased out. It also decides what new businesses are to be pursued. In other words, the enterprise decides what is to be done in respect of its Star businesses. For example, it may decide to support all its Stars and to straightaway divest two or three of its non performing units. Only after this basic decision is made a given business unit pursue its marketing planning. Obviously, the marketing objectives of the businesses selected for special growth push will be distinct from those of the businesses that are to be phased out.

Marketing Objectives must be specified in Clear Terms

The objectives must be specified in clear-cut and readily measurable terms. They must be quantified, with specific time schedules, so that they can be evaluated against performance. When the marketing objectives are left vague and ambiguous, activities will lose focus. For example, every business unit will have growth and profit as its basic objectives. But, if these objectives are not amplified properly, ambiguity may result even around these basic objectives Rate of Growth, Cost implications of Growth, Risk factors in implementing for Growth and who are the competitors. Route of Profits and their trend in the particular business and the position the business unit can take in its industry to carve out the profit desired.

It is thus evident that clarity is the foremost requisite in setting marketing objectives. When objectives are clear, marketing strategy formulation starts on a stronger wicket. A unit must make its intentions and desires clear and precise, definite and measurable, say for the next fiscal,

· Income from sales will be increased by 10 percent.

· Profit will be increased by 7 percent.

· Market share will be increased by 3 percent.

To conclude, Marketing objectives have to be set in all the key areas of the business. They include: profits, sales volume, market share, productivity, research and development, and innovation.