Managing Hybrid Marketing Systems
In the article we read that companies create hybrid marketing systems by adding channels and communications methods. A company generally must reach new customers or segments to sustain growth. It usually supplements existing channels and methods with new ones designed to attract and develop new customers. This addition of new channels and methods create a hybrid marketing system. Hybrid systems are hard to manage. It is an important way to increase sales and decrease costs. For example, IBM and Apple started adding new channels and communications methods and by these IBM and Apple created hybrid marketing systems. Smart managers recognize the high risks of operating hybrid systems. A hybrid can be hard to manage. The result is the same whether the migration is from direct to indirect channels (such as IBM) or from indirect to direct channels (such as Apple). Hybrid Marketing Systems can offer substantial rewards. For example, if a company captures benefits of a hybrid system with increased coverage, lower costs and customized approaches then that company will enjoy significant competitive advantage over rivals that cling to traditional ways. The need to contain costs is another powerful force behind the spread of hybrid systems when companies look for ways to reach customers that are more efficient than direct selling. At the heart of the problem of designing and managing hybrid systems is the fundamental question of what mix of channels and communication methods can be best to accomplish the assortment of tasks required to identify, sell and manage customers. The trick to designing and managing hybrid systems is to disaggregate demand-generation tasks both within and across marketing system. It recognizes that channels are not the basic building blocks of a marketing system but marketing tasks are. This analysis of tasks and channels will identify the hybrid’s basic components and permit managers to design and manage the system...
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