Strategic marketing plans and collaborative networks

Marcos Fava Neves
2007 Marketing Intelligence & Planning  
Purpose -This paper seeks to propose a new framework for the marketing planning process that is better adjusted to the modern operational environment, with particular emphasis on the exploitation of collaborative "company networks" in optimising the potential of the plan. Design/methodology/approach -A review of the academic literature of marketing planning, three participant-observation case studies and a focus group, the latter two in Brazil, provided the conceptual input for a very detailed
more » ... or a very detailed stepwise model for marketing planning in a network environment. Findings -The new model, including its focus on collaborative action, earned considerable support among participants in the second and third phases of the research. The plan itself was found to be applicable in practice. Obstacles to the achievement of collaborating networks were identified, and solutions are proposed. Research limitations/implications -The study proposes and tentatively tests a systematic, sequential framework for marketing planning. It also casts light on networks and working relationships from an unusual angle, which may be transferable to other contexts. Suggestions for further research mainly concern the application and testing of the new model in practice. Limitations concern the representativeness of the case-study and focus-group respondents, and the timescale. Practical implications -The major managerial implication of this research study is the planning instrument it proposes and, tentatively, tests. It holds the promise of more making marketing budgets work harder, via more systematic planning and exploitation of the power of networks. Originality/value -The proposed model differs from other marketing planning frameworks in treating the company to which it is applied as member of a network, not an individual. The study took place in a very large "second-world" economy, a setting very different from those in which conventional marketing plans have been proposed and applied. Introduction: room for change in the marketing planning process The growth in international trade, opening of economies and global access to information have brought increasing competition in several industries, resulting in strong consolidation and reduction of margins. This new environment introduced marketing strategists to an era of strict budgetary control and coordination, demanding very careful decision making with respect to where and how to spend what resources were available. In response to the constraints imposed by the globalization of markets, which often have no conventional boundaries, firms and their marketing function have become more international, and recognized a growing need to focus on their core businesses, outsourcing activities and contractual relationships, so as to The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available at
doi:10.1108/02634500710737951 fatcat:ecxtkg2k6vainngnqi6toosqfi