Describe the different roles in a business buying center. Then outline which individuals might play those roles in the process of buying food for a school cafeteria.

Topics: Coffee, Starbucks, Decision making Pages: 5 (1659 words) Published: November 3, 2008
A.Describe the different roles in a business buying center. Then outline which individuals might play those roles in the process of buying food for a school cafeteria.

Buying centers have numerous of roles of participation in the purchasing decision process. There are users who are the people who actually use the goods and services. Their role in the consumer decision making are very important. The user may help to facilitate the purchase actions by requesting specific products and they made aid in the development of a specific product's specifications. A prime example of this is Office Depot whose customers have influence the purchase of office equipment. A user has the buying power to change the market direction of a business. Because of this businesses are offering a more consumer friendly environment in order to maintain at the forefront of their business community.

Gatekeepers are the controllers of all the information that the buying center members will review. The gatekeeper could be the office manager in a doctor's office that controls informational literature from salespeople from actually getting seen or read. They control of printed material, advertisements, or by making the decisions on whether or not the salesperson could speak with individuals who are making the buying decisions. The office manager or the desk clerks are the first line gatekeepers.

Influencers will shape the buying decision by supplying information to guide the assessment of a substitute product. The influencer also sets the buying specifications of a certain product. The influencer consists of technical staff like engineers and quality control specialists. There are times when a company would hire an outside consultant to help influence their buying decisions. The decider is the person who will choose a good or service that is rendered. The service specialist may influence the decision making of buying a product, but the ultimate decision to buy could come from the manager, the purchase manager, or the company's CEO. The decider could be a designer that decides which vendor that could be met by a specification of the designed product.

The buyer has official authority to choose a supplier and to implement the procedures for securing the goods or service. The buyer will most likely take the influence and consideration of the user when they purchase a new product or service. The organization's opinion matter when it comes to purchasing power. The purchasing manger often fills the buyer's role and performs all details concerning the purchase order. Business-to-business marketers all have an important role to maintain strong business relationship. Constant feedback and education about the product is needed. Meetings, conventions, and consumer in-services are a must to keep a strong business relation; especially on the part of the vendor or service provider. Let's keep in mind that most of the decision makers are not located within the department and never will use the product at all. Therefore, these decision makers could be broad members or on an executive committee. These members could affect the overall purchase of the product or they will make a decision to take a lower bid or choose an alternative product.

B.Imagine that you are a marketer for one of the following companies: Amazon.com, Apple Computer, Starbucks, Burger King, or a nationally recognized company of your choice. Decide whether your company will expand internationally into Mexico, India, or China. Write a brief report outlining and describing the issues your company must consider regarding each of the following environmental areas: economic, social-cultural, technological, and political-legal.

Starbucks coffee would be a great business venture in Mexico because of the current business connection with most of the Latin American countries. A large an amount of Starbucks' coffee is imported from Latin America. Starbucks coffee is not most economic cost effective...

Cited: urtz, Louis E. Boone and David L. "Contemporary Marketing." Kurtz, Louis E. Boone and David L. Contemporary Marketing. Mason: South-Western of Thomson, 2006. 156-253.
Service, United States Department of Agriculture Foreign Agricultural. North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). January 2008. 26 July 2008 .
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