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Showing posts from 2012

Filling a research gap

I have had so many students asking me this question that I decided to write a blog post about this.

Filling a research gap means that :

You are not duplicating existing research.
That you have something new to contribute - in terms of theory, methodology or sometimes context.

Online Data Protection training

Attending the mandatory online Data Protection training. This training takes about 1 hours and staff can take the training at their own convenience and unlike actual training sessions, you can pause, go and get a drink, come back and continue from where you left off. It's more like a slideshow but with tests at the end.

I guess the disadvantage is that there is no interaction and you cannot ask questions when you are not clear.

Despite this drawback, there are so many advantages besides the convenience mentioned earlier. For the organisation, I guess it is cheaper for them to organise - there is no need to hire a trainer, book a room, etc. I guess we will be getting invitations to more of such training sessions in the future.

Coventry University #3 in the UK for Marketing

Based on the subject ranking for Business School subjects in the 2012 NSS, our department (Marketing) has been ranked 3rd in the UK.

Coventry University's score: 95%
Sector average score (Overall Satisfaction): 81%
Coventry’s ranking position: 3
No. of institutions with published NSS results: 52

Note: This includes all institutions who have published NSS results for each subject, which may include FE colleges and university colleges as well as universities

Research ethics training

Delivered by Prof. Marylyn Carrigan, BES ethics and governance leader at Coventry University.
"Most ethical issues in research can be resolved with common sense."

Cesim SIMBrand Simulation Game Hands-on workshop

I organised a hands-on workshop for the CESIM SIMBrand online simulation game for members of our department.

It was run by Waqas Mir from CESIM. Only 6 staff members turned up for the workshop but based on the feedback of those who attended, I felt that it was a great success overall. Even though I have successfully run this game for 4 different UG and PG classes, I still learnt a few new things in the workshop.

The new Mercede-Benz interactive ad campaign

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Check out the late advertising campaign from Mercedes-Benz promoting their new A-Class model. It is the first to use Twitter, the micro-blogging tool, in this way.

They are asking Twitter users to determine the outcome of a TV ad which will be aired for the first time during this weeks X Factor.

According to the storyline, a young musician and his female friend is trying to get to a gig driving the new Mercedes and chased by the police. There are several possible endings and Twitter users decide the outcome using the tag #YOUDRIVE in their tweets.

Teaching in the New Academic Year

I will be teaching the following courses at Coventry Business School this academic year 2012 - 2013:

Under Graduate
203MKT - Marketing Management (used to be 262MKT)

Post Graduate
M05MKT - Marketing Planning
M21MKT  - E-Marketing

Previously I had taught:

M11MKT - Research Methods (Marketing)

363MKT - International Marketing Strategy and

267MKT - Principles of Marketing.


I start teaching a group of MBA Marketing students tomorrow.

Ordinary Consumers as Brand Ambassadors

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We normally associate Brand Ambassadors with actors and actresses, models and sports personalities. However, you might be surprised to learn that Edaran Tan Chong Motor, the official distributors of Nissan cars in Malaysia have recently selected four lucky people out of hundreds of applicants as Nissan LEAF Ambassadors. These lucky guys are using the Nissan Leaf for six weeks and are sharing their experiences.

However, when I looked at who these lucky ambassadors were, I noticed a few familiar names. they are definitely not ordinary - at least two of them are well known bloggers in Malaysia. Jason Goh who blogs at Smashin' Popstar and Daniel Yap who blogs at Eternal hobbyist.


It does make perfect sense and is not something new as companies have been using bloggers to review (and promote) their products (and services) for a while. Bloggers are opinion leaders and several blogs have readerships that run into thousands. Studies have shown that they are perceived as more credible tha…

DPR reviewee workshop

DPR AC - Reviewee workshop

DPR is the acronym for Development and Performance Review and it's something that all employees have to face in most organisations.

This workshop was Run by the Learning and Development Team of Coventry University.
On the 27th of July 2012 from 09:30 am - 12:30 pm at the TechoCentre, room: CC2.1

The session was run by Anna Chapman, HR Learning and Development Adviser.

As this is going to be my first DPR at Coventry University, I thought it might be useful to understand the key areas to consider in completing my DPR form. I have been evaluated before but I guess each organisation has it's own unique way to review the performance of their employees.

I was not disappointed and learnt that my objective would need to be SMART:

•S: Specific
•M: Measurable
•A: Achievable (and Agreed)
•R: Relevant (or Resourced, or Realistic!)
•T: Time-linked

There were some examples of not so "SMART" objectives. However, I would have liked some good examples of…

Reading list for Branding Module

A couple of minutes ago, a colleague asked me whether I could recommend some seminal journal papers on branding. Somehow, I could not think of a single one. All I could think of was the book Strategic Brand Management by Kevin Lane Keller. This may be due to the fact that branding is not really my area of specialisation. Contrary to what some people seem to think, marketing is such a wide field.

Anyway, had a look on the net and here is a list of some widely cited papers on branding:

 Aaker, Jennifer Lynn (1997). Dimensions of Brand Personality, Journal of Marketing Research, 34(Aug), 347-356.

Fan, Y. (2002) The National Image of Global Brands, Journal of Brand Management, 9(3), 180-192.

de Chernatony, L. (1999) Brand Management Through Narrowing the Gap Between Brand Identity and Brand Reputation, Journal of Marketing Management, 15(1-3), 157-179.

Geuens, Maggie, Bert Weijters and Kristoff De Wulf (2009). A New Measure of Brand Personality, International Journal of Research in Marke…

One internet minute

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Just received this interesting diagram of what happens in one internet minute. It's astounding.


Thanks Alejandra.

Redefining Marketing

Ana Isabel Canhoto, Senior Lecturer at Oxford Brookes, has written an interesting post on her blog, discussing ‘This thing called marketing'.

A few years ago, I had posted something related on my old Warwick blog on "Selling is not marketing". Anyway, Ana mentions that the definition she usually refers to is the one given by the Chartered Institute of Marketing which describes marketing as:
‘The management process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably.’  This definition is my favourite as well. However, I feel that there is a need to update this definition.

As I commented on Ana's post,  the growing importance of Social marketing has presented some unique issues, where positive social change is the main objective and not fiscal targets. This may mean that the term "profitably" in the CIM definition may not be applicable all the time.

Furthermore, I would add 'and maintaining' just after 'sat…

Jubilympic celebrations

I was on air today morning on the Annie Othen Show on BBC Coventry and Warwickshire. I was asked to give my opinion on whether I thought businesses taking advantage of the Jubilee and Olympics (Jubilympics!) celebrations.

You can listen to the recording here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/player/p00rxydt

 In case you are not aware, the 2012 Olympics and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations are coming up soon. Everyone is getting into the mood. However, some feel that stores are taking advantage. One listener had complained that a shop had wrapped up her favourite sponge cakes in new packaging (the Union jack), increased the prices and reduced the number of cakes.

 Of course this is nothing new. Businesses do it all the time - "making hay while the Sun shines" and in this case, profiteering from patriotism. However, they have to remember that consumers are not stupid and they risk alienating their costumers, as it happened in this case with the lady and the cakes.

 I also …

VW engaging customers via social media

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Volkswagen, the German car maker is actively targeting customers on Facebook by getting them involved in their advertising campaigns. No, I am not talking about customer generated advertising which is a popular buzz word today but rather about getting customers to say nice things about the brand or product (positive testimonials) and using these in their advertising campaigns.

This is not a new concept in advertising and businesses and organisations often use positive testimonials to promote their products. However, it is the way that VW is actively soliciting and appealing to the "ego" of customers or the novelty effect and making innovative use of the technology, which is quite interesting.

I took part in two of their campaigns - just for the experience.

The first one was the " Beetle Billboard Times Square Experience". All I had to do was "like" the new Beetle (targeted at Men) and my face appeared live on the Volkswagen Beetle Billboard in Times Squa…

2 publications in 2 months

I am really excited because two papers which I co-wrote with Bang Nguyen, Senior Lecturer at Oxford Brookes, has finally been published.

They are:

Nguyen, B. and Mutum, D. (2012), A Review of Customer Relationship Management: Success, Advances, Pitfalls and Futures, Business Process Management Journal, 18 (3).

The Business Process Management Journal is a ABS 1* journal.

Nguyen, B. & Mutum, D. S. (2012). Customer relationship management: advances, dark sides, exploitation and unfairness, International Journal of Electronic Customer Relationship Management, 6(1), 1-19.

Though not a ABS listed journal, the IJECRM is listed in:

- The Index of Information Systems Journals
- Ulrich's Periodicals Directory
- ACPHIS Rank 'B' (the Australian Council of Professors and Heads of Information Systems)
- Intute: Social Sciences
- Ingenta &
- Cabell’s Directory of Publishing Opportunities

Blogging statistics

A number of people have asked me about the blogging statistics and I realised that the data I used in my PhD thesis is already outdated. Given below is some information which I presented in my Thesis:

According to the report by Universal-McCann (2009) on the impact of social media, 71 percent of active internet users read blogs. Blog participation has also increased with more people leaving comments on blogs (an increase to over 50 percent in 2009). The report also shows that over 29 percent of internet users have blogged about a product or brand.

According to Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere 2008 report, approximately 133 million blogs (Winn, 2009) were indexed by Technorati, as compared to approximately 70 million blogs in 2007 (Sifry, 2007). Interestingly, the 2008 Technorati report also mentions that a majority of bloggers (54 percent) had advertising on their blogs (White, 2009).

Another report by the Pew Internet and American Life Project in 2008 (Smith, 2008), reveals tha…

ABS ranking of Marketing Journals 2012

UPDATE: 02/04/2018

The ABS Marketing Journals List 2018 is now out.

The 2015 ABS journal guide (now called the EAJG Journal Guide) rankings of marketing journals here

Here is the complete list of marketing journals as ranked by the Association of Business Schools (ABS) - Academic Journal Quality Guide, Version 4 . Updated 2010 list

It should be noted that Advances in Consumer Research (2*) is not actually a journal but proceedings of the Association for Consumer Research conferences. However, AMA Educators' Conference Proceedings which is ranked 29nd by Hult et al (1997)2 is not included in the list.

4* Journals

Journal of Marketing
Journal of Marketing Research
Journal of Consumer Research
Marketing Science
Journal of Retailing

3* Journals

International Journal of Research in Marketing (official Journal of the European Marketing Academy)
Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science
European Journal of Marketing
Journal of International Marketing
Industrial Marketing Management
Psychology and …

Readings: Core and competing marketing strategies

Pleshko, L. P., and Heiens, R.A. (2008). The contemporary product-market strategy grid and the link to market orientation and profitability. Journal of Targeting, Measurement & Analysis for Marketing,16, 2(March), 108-114.

Akan, O., Allan, R.S., Helms, M.M., and Sprals III, S.A. (2006) Critical tasks for implementing Porter’s generic strategies. Journal of Business Strategy, 27, 2, 43-53.

Gur─âu, C. (2007). Porter's generic strategies: a re-interpretation from a relationship marketing perspective. Marketing Review, 7, 4(Winter), 369-383.

Nicovich, S.G., Dibrell, C.C. and Davis, P.S. (2007) Integration of Value Chain Position and Porter’s 1980 Competitive Strategies into the Market Orientation Conversation: An Examination of Upstream and Downstream Activities Journal of Business and Economic Studies, 13, 2( Fall), pp 91-106.

Bridges, E., and Freytag, P.V. (2009). When do firms invest in offensive and/or defensive marketing? Journal of Business Research, 62,7( July), 745-749.

Or…

Infographic: Psychology behind exaggerated and false research

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AN interesting infographic that the clinicalpsychology.net team built that highlights the psychology behind exaggerated and false research.


Created by: ClinicalPsychology.net

Thanks to Tony Shin for sharing.

What is a smart phone?

I am in charge of two modules of which a major component is the marketing simulation game SIMBrand. The game is designed to reflect the real life business world and the students are supposed to play the role of a top management team responsible for taking marketing decisions for a smart phone company.

Today one of my students asked me some very interesting questions.
"I wanted to ask what 'smartphone' refers to in the game?
Is it the style of phone or features?
How do we make a phone smart or normal?"
I was surprised but apparently there is no standard definition of the term "smartphone" across the industry and there is no clear differentiation between a "normal" and a "smart phone".

So here is my attempt to distinguish between the two types of mobile phones. The term smartphone refers to the new breed of mobile phones. Besides allowing you to make and receive calls, SMS, MMS, they have multiple features including the ability to take/ …

Target Markets/Market Segmentation

Some recommended articles: Smith, M. (2002). Derrick's Ice-Cream Company: applying the BCG matrix in customer profitability analysis. Accounting Education, 11(4), 365-375. (Group 6)Dibb, S. (1995). Developing a decision tool for identifying operational and attractive segments. Journal of Strategic Marketing, 3(3), 189-204. (Group 7)Dibb, S. and Wensley, R. (2002).Segmentation Analysis for Industrial Markets: Problems of integrating customer requirements into operations strategy, European Journal of Marketing, 36(1/2), 231-251.Buzzell, R.D. (2004). The PIMS Program of strategy research: A retrospective appraisal, Journal of Business Research, 57, 478-483.

Market Planning Presentations: Mission Statement and Competitive environment

Attention all M05MKT students: Hirota, S., Kubo, K, Miyajima, H., Hong, P. & Park, Y. W. (2010) Corporate mission, corporate policies and business outcomes: evidence from Japan, Management Decision, 48(7) 1134-1153. (Group 1)King, D.L., Case, C.J. & Premo, K.M. (2010). Current Mission Statement Emphasis: Be Ethical And Go Global, Academy of Strategic Management Journal, 9(2), 71-87. (Group 2)Peyrefitte, J. and David, F.R. (2006) A Content Analysis of the Mission Statements of United States Firms in Four, Industries International Journal of Management, 23(2), 296-301. Heiser, R.S., McQuitty, S. and Stratemeyer, A.W.(2005), Broadening the competitive environment: The customer’s Perspective, Academy of Marketing Science Review, (12), 1-11. (Group 3)Hooley, G.J., Moller, K. and Broderick, A.J. (1998). Competitive Positioning and the Resource Based View of the Firm, Journal of Strategic Marketing, 6(2), 97-115. (Group 4)

Research initiative- articles for discussion

Here are some articles that may be of interest to students taking Marketing research.
Chattalas, M., Kramer, T. and Takada, H.(2008). The impact of national stereotypes on the country of origin effect. International Marketing Review, 25 (1) 54-74.Hogg, M. K., Cox, A. J. and Keeling, K.(2000). The impact of self-monitoring on image congruence and product/brand evaluation. European Journal of Marketing 34(5/6), 641-667.Oberecker, E. M., Riefler, P. and Diamantopoulos, A. (2008). The Consumer Affinity Construct: Conceptualization, Qualitative Investigation and Research Agenda. Journal of International Marketing, 16(3), 23-56.Goulding, C., Shankar, A., Elliott, R. and Canniford, R. (2009). The Marketplace Management of Illicit Pleasure. Journal of Consumer Research, 35(5), 759-771.

Reading List for Marketing Planning Module 1

Would love to hear your comments on the reading list. Please feel free to suggest any book or paper if you feel that I have missed out any.

Mission Statements:

Peyrefitte, J. and David, F.R. (2006) A Content Analysis of the Mission Statements of United States Firms in Four Industries. International Journal of Management, 23(2), 296-301.

Bartkus, B., and Glassman, M. (2008). Do Firms Practice What They Preach? The Relationship Between Mission Statements and Stakeholder Management. Journal of Business Ethics, 83(2), 207-216.

Marketing Audit:

Rothe, J.T., Harvey, M.G., and Jackson, C.E. (1997). The Marketing Audit: Five Decades Later. Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 5(3),1-16.

Porter’s Five Forces:

Grundy, T. (2006). Rethinking and Reinventing Michael Porter’s Five Forces Model. Strategic Change, 15 (5), 213-229.

SWOT Analysis:

Villinger, N. D. (2009). Analyzing non-profit organizations: managerial frameworks and evaluation. Journal of Global Business Issues, 3(1)61-65.

McDonald, M…

What is a blog?

I was quite surprised when I found out that a number of people including academics, are not aware what a blog is. Here is an article I wrote on my old website at the University of Warwick. It was first published on Sat 16 Feb 2008.

In 2007, Technorati was tracking approximately 70 million weblogs, with about 120,000 new ones being created worldwide everyday - around 1.4 new blogs created every second (Sifry, 2007). By 2011, the number has gone up to 182,397,015 (Matthew Hurst, 2012).

The word “Blog” is derived from “Weblog”. It was Jorn Barger, who first coined the term, on 17 December 1997. In April or May of 1999, Peter Merholz, came up with the word “blog” after breaking the word weblog into the phrase “we blog” in the sidebar of his blog Peterme.com

Though some authors argue that the word is not a portmanteau of the words 'web' and 'log,' the terms ‘blog’, ‘weblog’ and ‘web log’ are often used interchangeably.

There are several definitions of the word blog and most…

How 2 bills in the US affects the Whole World

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When I first heard of the 2 bills before the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate respectively, I really did not care much. It was the 24 hours Wikipedia Wikipedia blackout which forced me to read about SOPA and PIPA and the possible impact they would have on all of us around the World if the legislations are passed.


Is this the beginning of the end of the free and open Internet? I sincerely hope not.

I also hope that other Government officials around the World do not get the same idea.

It would have made more of an impact had Facebook and Twitter joined in but for selfish reasons I was glad they had not - it was my graduation at Warwick University today.

Anyway, here are some interesting links on the issue:

Taking Action with Google

Live Blog on The Next Web

Clay Shirky on why SOPA is a bad idea

Courses taught this term (January - April 2012)

This term, I am module leader for 3 courses including 2 Masters courses, namely:
PG Courses M11MKT - Research Methods (Marketing) - New cohort. teaching for the second time. M05MKT - Marketing Planning -Teaching for the first time.
UG Courses 262MKT - Applied Marketing Management - Teaching for the first time.
I am also taking two seminar classes for the UG course 267MKT - Principles of Marketing.
In the meantime, I am also supervising 10 undergraduate students with their dissertations as well as 5 MBA students.
When am I going to get the time to carry out research and write papers?