There is an evident paradox in writing about marketing in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). On the one hand, SMEs are traditionally closer to their clients than multinational firms (MNEs) and directly “hear the voice of [their] customers” (Hill, 2001a, 2001b). On the other hand, SMEs use mental models and managerial frameworks that can differ substantially from the ones described by the mainstream marketing literature mostly addressed to bigger firms. SMEs plan their marketing strategies much less frequently than MNEs do. Many SMEs do not even have a marketing function or marketing-dedicated managers. Most of SMEs do not manage any market research activity, either directly or through external providers (Romano and Ratnatunga, 1995; Siu and Kirby, 1998; Hill, 2001a, 2001b). Given such premises, how can it be possible to keep together ‘marketing’ and ‘SMEs’? It becomes possible by moving from a ‘functional’ perspective (a firm does marketing when a marketing function exists) to an ‘activities-based’ perspective (a firm does marketing if it manages marketing activities independently from the existence of a marketing function and marketing managers). It is my opinion that the authors of the book Marketing for Entrepreneurs and SMEs, Maja Konečnik Ruzzier, Mitja Ruzzier and Robert D. Hisrich, were particularly effective in applying an activity-based perspective to the study of marketing in SMEs. They were not the first authors to do so. Other authors also successfully applied an activity-based perspective to SME marketing (i.e., Carson, 1985; Bhide, 1994; Carson and Gilmore, 2000; Pacitto et al., 2007).

Marketing for Entrepreneurs and SMEs. A Global Perspective. Reviewed by Guido Bortoluzzi

BORTOLUZZI, GUIDO
2014

Abstract

There is an evident paradox in writing about marketing in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). On the one hand, SMEs are traditionally closer to their clients than multinational firms (MNEs) and directly “hear the voice of [their] customers” (Hill, 2001a, 2001b). On the other hand, SMEs use mental models and managerial frameworks that can differ substantially from the ones described by the mainstream marketing literature mostly addressed to bigger firms. SMEs plan their marketing strategies much less frequently than MNEs do. Many SMEs do not even have a marketing function or marketing-dedicated managers. Most of SMEs do not manage any market research activity, either directly or through external providers (Romano and Ratnatunga, 1995; Siu and Kirby, 1998; Hill, 2001a, 2001b). Given such premises, how can it be possible to keep together ‘marketing’ and ‘SMEs’? It becomes possible by moving from a ‘functional’ perspective (a firm does marketing when a marketing function exists) to an ‘activities-based’ perspective (a firm does marketing if it manages marketing activities independently from the existence of a marketing function and marketing managers). It is my opinion that the authors of the book Marketing for Entrepreneurs and SMEs, Maja Konečnik Ruzzier, Mitja Ruzzier and Robert D. Hisrich, were particularly effective in applying an activity-based perspective to the study of marketing in SMEs. They were not the first authors to do so. Other authors also successfully applied an activity-based perspective to SME marketing (i.e., Carson, 1985; Bhide, 1994; Carson and Gilmore, 2000; Pacitto et al., 2007).
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11368/2830530
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