Problems and Prospects of Marketing

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International Journal of Business and Management

September, 2009

Problems and Prospects of Marketing in Developing Economies: The Nigerian Experience Sunday O. E. Ewah & Alex B. Ekeng Department of Business Administration, Cross River University of Technology Ogoja Campus, Nigeria Tel: 80-5901-4300 Abstract The study takes a holistic view of some of the problems facing marketing in developing economies, such as low marketing education, preferences for foreign products and low patronage for non-essential products, high cost of production, inadequate infrastructures. Others are few competitive opportunities, excessive government regulations and interference, political instability and civil unrest. Despite these problems, there are prospects for improvement in the nearest future based on the high growing population of most developing countries such as Nigeria large unexplored markets, attractive government incentives, growing affluence, to mention but a few. Therefore, it is concluded that developing countries such as Nigeria must put their arts together and overcome these few difficulties in order to exploit the marketing opportunities that are abound in their various domains. Keywords: Marketing, Developing economies, Problems, Prospects and developed economies 1. Introduction Marketing is an evolving and dynamic discipline that cuts across every spectrum of life. This explains why contemporary societies are now involved in one form of marketing activity or the other. The recent advancement in technology, has aided the free flow of goods and services as well as information amongst businesses and institutions, thereby turning the marketing environment into a global village (Ewah, 2007). For the purpose of this article, marketing is defined as the performance of both business and non business activities for the satisfaction of humanity and society’s well being through judicious exchange processes. On a general perspective Kotler and Armstrong (2001) described marketing as a social and managerial process whereby individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating and exchanging products and value with others. Marketing is intricately linked with the economy of virtually all nations of the world. It is the major factor, especially in developed economies responsible for the wealth of nations and the means of resuscitation during economic depression. For the developed countries as a whole, marketing experience has occurred as part of the evolutionary cultural process and also progress of these nations. Therefore practical problems are profoundly handled as they had arisen, with available resource means at the material time. But the developing countries are evidently operating in an entirely different context today. Time has changed many things. Many circumstances in the business world now appear to be affected by standardized but chimerical factors, so that operating in these situations amount to operating under conditions of fait accompli. Countries like U.S.A, Japan, UK, Germany, France, Switzerland and Belgium have tremendously benefited from the performance of their marketing activities, which have really helped to boost their economies and contribute to the GNP. But for most developing countries, (including Nigeria) the scenario and the business climate have not been too favourable, due to some attendant problems, such as poverty, fragmented markets, weak investment culture, prevalence of sub-standard local products, and the unwillingness of the majority of manufacturers and businesses to imbibe ethical marketing practices. These problems make it difficult for marketing to grow and prosper in developing economies. Consequently the economy of most developing countries has not been better off because of the poor development of marketing as the bedrock for improving the economic prospect of contemporary economies. However, the economy of developing countries to a large extent dictates the direction and...
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