IMPROVING DISTRIBUTION EFFECTIVENESS IN MARKETING OPERATION
Place or distribution is very important in Marketing because of its role in marketing goods and services available to the consumers at the right place and time. It is a strategic marketing mix often referred to as “4P’s”.
The marketing mix comprises the decision elements in Company’s marketing success and complements the marketing concept. The availability of products produces the gap of space and time between production and consumption. Products must get to the desired or targeted market the way and time they want it before it achieves its desired satisfaction. They therefore break the barriers or environmental gap between the production area to the consumers.
Having seen the importance of product availability in attaining customer’s satisfaction. It is also necessary to look at the different definitions as it reveals the activities involved in the actual transfer.
Dalyrample and Prison (1980, p.414) ascertained that distribution concerned with organizing system of transportation, storage and communication so that goods and services will be readily available to customer.
This implies that distribution organizes the product, transport it to the required destination, stores it for the right time to match demand and communication its availability.
Kotler Philips (1988, p. 599) regarded marketing channel which is the same as distribution as set of interdependent organizations involved in the process of making a product or services available for use or consumption.
2.1 THE ORIGIN OF THE SUBJECT AREA:
The area of the study is Enugu Metropolis in order to constitute the same, the researcher divided Enugu Metropolis into five major respondents were allocated to all the zones.
The zones are as follows:
Zone A: Asata, Ogui, New Layout and Independence Layout.
Zone B: New Haven, Emene.
Zone C: G.R.A., Trans-Ekulu, Abakpa.
Zone D: Coal Camp, Iva valley.
Zone E: Uwani, Achara Layout, Idaw River.
- SCHOOL OF THOUGHT WITHIN THE SUBJECT MATTER:
Nwokoye, N. G. (1978, pg. 32) said “marketing in the eighties area characterized by re-organised distribution system”. He also said that progressive marketers will hand pick and manage the middlemen that will participate in their channels of distribution. They will no longer be satisfied with selling their product to all customers.
An insight into the views of Nwokoye shows his foresight of the changes in the distribution system in Nigeria. He looked at a situation where the systems were recognized for obvious reason, like achieving effective and efficient operations. He also looked at a situation where progressive marketers as he called them will hand pick and manage the middlemen who will participate in their channels of distribution.
Stanton William J. (1978, pg. 391) is projecting into the future of physical distribution to see the tremendous challenges and opportunity awaiting business executive in the years ahead. These pressures according to him would be coming from conditions within their company and also from external environment forces (such as inflation and other economic conditions). He posited that essentially there would be problems of organisation with regard to physical distribution activities. He therefore stressed the needs for effective co-ordination process.
In this area, management has therefore, been advised to develop and operate efficient flow system so that the right amount of the right product can be moved to the right place at the right time.
2.3 THE SCHOOL OF THOUGHT RELEVANCE TO THE PROBLEM OF THE SEARCH:
According to Philip Kotler, customer attraction and satisfaction is highly influence by the sellers physical distribution capabilities and decision.
Therefore, manufactures use organizations who are involved in physical distribution to help them stock and move goods so that they will be available to customers at the right time and place.
Philip Kotler (pg. 557) said that physical distribution involved planning, implementing and controlling the physical flows of materials and final good from points or origin to the points of use to meet customers’ needs at a profit.
Physical distribution is regarded as a potent tool in competitive marketing and not only a cost. Therefore, company as can attract additional customer by offering better service or lowest prices through physical distribution. Improvement companies lose customers hen they fail to fail to supply goods on time.
He equally maintained that the company should co-ordinate its physical distribution and marketing activities in order to create high market satisfaction at a reasonable cost.
Oliver Gordon (1980, pg. 200) while writing on channel structure and its conducts consumption as usually being at a distance from production and that some mechanisms are required to overcome the gap of between the two. That mechanisms is the channel of distribution which is the part goods follow from manufacturer to Customer with the involvement of the middlemen.
Oliver cited Bucklein’s definition on a production, distribution systems as a series of agencies which is the process of bridging the gap operate upon three major and distinguishable flow:
(a) The flow of information to and fro the customer.
(b) The product flow handling, moving and storing which may include sorting by grading and break in the bulk.
(c) The title flow: The passage of ownership with the possible attendant risk.
Oliver contended that the above three operation or distribution activities required improvement for efficiency and effectiveness as he write “improvement in distribution efficiency and effectiveness can therefore have major impact on the company’s overall performance and profitability”. From the view of this writer, it has again been revealed that all distribution activities direct towards bridging the gap between production and consumption, creating place and time utilities should aim at effectiveness and efficiency of such operations. This means that place and time utilities for the consumers should be enhanced.
2.4 DIFFERENT METHOD OF STUDYING THE PROBLEM:
The problem of studying can be studied using a number of variables, such variable may involve: the use of questionnaire, in this method.
The researchers and expected to prepare a number of questions relating to the subject of study. These questionnaires come from all the areas involved in improving distribution effectiveness posed such questions as:
(i) Customers and distributors are they aware of NBC’s products to make their purchase.
(ii) Is there any need for satisfactory in distribution system.
(iii) Is there any effective and efficient performance of respondents.
Therefore, the questionnaires were equally administered both to the company personnel, the distributor and their consumers. The Company personnel questionnaires were painstakingly designed to extract relevant data as much as possible form.
The researcher structured the questionnaire in four ways:
– That the respondents were to fill the question with a reply of yes or no answer.
– Respondents were provided with multiple answers i.e. respondent were to choose from alternative answers provided.
– It affords the respondent the opportunity to air his views about the problem in question.
– Respondents are to separate the answers between two questions that are completely opposite to or different from each other.
Distribution is one of the basic elements in marketing which deals with the movement of products and services from the area of production to areas of consumption.
Distribution can also refer as the movement of products and services from the point where there are useful through channel members.
Distribution activities are carried out through a channel of distribution which is made up of organizations, individuals or group of individual involved in the distribution process.
A channel of distribution is a set of interdependent organizations involved in the process of making a product or service available for use or consumption.