While organizational customers are different in some ways from consumers, marketers need to answer a similar set of questions to develop a solid foundation for their marketing plans.

Part 1: Review Questions

  1. While organizational customers are different in some ways from consumers, marketers need to answer a similar set of questions to develop a solid foundation for their marketing plans. How do those customers decide what to buy and what suppliers to buy from?
  2. The Internet is simultaneously encouraging two opposing trends in the airlines industry purchasing: (1) the growing use of short-term spot market contracts via Web-based auctions and (2) the strengthening of long-term buyer-supplier relationships via the sharing of sales and inventory data and the development of supply chain alliances. Do you agree or disagree with this statement? Why or why not? Defend your answer.
  3. Because of the differences in the decision-making process, a given marketing strategy will not be equally effective for both high- and low-involvement products. The consumer marketer’s first task, then, is to determine whether the majority of potential customers in the target segment are likely to be highly involved with the purchase decision or not. Why is this true? Defend your answer.
  4. Not all purchase decisions are equally important or psychologically involving for the consumer. People engage in a more extensive decision-making process, involving a more detailed search for information and comparison of alternatives, when buying high-involvement goods and services than when purchasing more mundane, low-involvement items. Provide examples for each type of decision-making process as they relate to the purchase of bundled travel options in the airline industry.
  5. Regardless of the consumer’s level of involvement with a product category, consumers often prefer different brands because of differences in their psychological or personal characteristics, such as their perceptions, memories, attitudes, and lifestyles. Explain in detail each one of these four characteristics as they relate to yourself and provide examples.

Part 2: Facilitating Business Buying in the Airlines Industry

Based on the module readings (Mullins and Walker, 2013), choose an airline that you are familiar with and conduct a value analysis as it relates to the supply chain for that company. Be specific in your analysis and determine what value this process offers, i.e. time, route planning, baggage handling, etc. for the airline. Write your answer in at least two paragraphs regarding these processes and the value propositions associated with your chosen airlines. Create a graphic showing the steps of the value chain.

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