Discuss about the Integrated Business Management Project.
This research proposal is about ”analyzing the impact of social media marketing on the purchasing decision of customers”. A case study for the company Tesco has been selected for this research proposal. Tesco is British Multinational retail organization established in the year of 1919 (Cheung & Thadani, 2012). It has stores in more than 12 countries all over the world. The company has 28.4% market share.
Background of the Study
According to Akehurst Afonso and Martins Gonçalves (2012), technology has given consumers the opportunity to examine about an offered product or a new product. Presently, internet technology such as social media marketing has added a newer perspective to business. Social media marketing has improved the communication between companies and their customers (Fan & Gordon, 2014). It has also affected the decision making process of customers (Fotis, Buhalis & Rossides, 2012) (55%). They can give their review and opinion about a product on social media, which can affect other customers as well.
According to Fotis Buhalis and Rossides (2012), an increase of social media marketing has suppressed the effectiveness of traditional marketings such as T.V. advertisements, newspaper advertisements, banners, and hoardings. Most of the company invest a large amount of money for social media marketing. However, most of the marketers are not able to recognize the specific necessities of customers (Fan & Gordon, 2014). For this reason, most of the social media advertisements are becoming less effective. In, additions, most of the companies use false statement in their social media advertisements. It has negatively affected the purchasing decision of customers (Akehurst, Afonso & Martins Gonçalves, 2012).
Research Aim and Objectives
The aim of the research proposal is to assess how social media marketing has changed the customer’s decision making process. The objectives of the research proposal are given below:
- To analyze the factors that affect consumer’s purchasing decision
- To assess the difference between traditional marketing and social media marketing
- To analyze the changes that social media marketing has initiated at every stage of consumer’s buying decision
- What are the factors that affect the customer’s purchasing decision mostly?
- What is major difference between social media marketing and traditional marketing?
- How social media marketing affect customer’s purchasing decision?
Customer’s Purchasing Model
A five-step model of consumer purchasing decision has been developed by Koalt, Engel, and Blackwell during 1968. These five stages are like recognition of problem, searching information, finding alternatives, decision of purchasing and post purchasing behaviour (Fotis, Buhalis & Rossides, 2012). These stages are discussed below:
According to Cheung and Thadani (2012), problem recognition starts when there is gap between the real situation of clients and their preferred situation. The needs of customers can be analyzed with help of Maslow’s need of hierarchy. They are such as psychological needs, safety needs, love and belongings (Fan & Gordon, 2014). When the needs are identified, customers start searching information. As Cheung and Thadani (2012) stated that internal information is collected through customer’s own experience and external information are collected from friends and family members. After collecting information, customers look to find out product options that meet their needs (Akehurst, Afonso & Martins Gonçalves, 2012). At the next stage, the actual prpurchasing action occurs. However, Cheung and Thadani (2012) mentioned that it is not the end of purchasing stage. After the purchasing stage customer analyzes their products and decides whether they are satisfied with their products or not. This stage is known as post purchasing stage. The sense of satisfaction in this stage can improve customer loyalty.
In order to develop this research work, positivism research philosophy is used along with deductive research approach and descriptive research design.
Methods of Data Collection
As Waits and Paetkau (2015) stated that, there are mainly two types of data collection method is used in a research work. They are qualitative data collection method and quantitative data collection method. In order to analyze the effect of social media marketing on consumer’s purchasing decision, quantitative data collection method is used. It helps to gather data from a large population in a cost effective manner. Survey questionnaires will be developed and distributed to 55 customers of Tesco. Collected data will be analyzed with the help of MS Excel.
Data Collection Sources
According to Thomson and Emery (2014), there are mainly two types of data sources available for a research work. They are such as primary sources and secondary sources. Primary data can be collected with the help of surveys and interviews. On the other hand, secondary data can be collected from books and journals. In this research work, primary data will be gathered with the help of survey questionnaires. It will provide an overview of the impact of social media marketing on customer's purchasing decision.
(Source: Created by Author)
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Fan, W. & Gordon, M.D., (2014). The power of social media analytics. Communications of the ACM, 57(6), pp.74-81.
Fotis, J., Buhalis, D. & Rossides, N., (2012). Social media use&impact during the holiday travel planning process (pp. 13-24). Springer-Verlag.
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