Information is considered as a key component of any business or organization. Right kind of information that implies the right timing, quality, and quantity of information is required for quality decisions. Information plays an important role in the effective functioning of the organization, its existence, and also it facilitates businesses in close connection with both internal and external marketing people. An organization that is unable to manage information effectively i.e. collecting the right information, analyzing, implementing, storing, etc.; results in failure of its objectives. In today’s era of the information revolution, regular and updated information is required by marketing decision-makers to understand the changing needs and desires of current and potential customers. Moreover, information is also important for knowing the strengths and weaknesses of competitors and for the effectiveness of distribution channels. Without relevant and timely information, a marketing manager can’t make effective decisions. So, the development of a marketing information system in an organization is a key requirement for effective and rational decisions.
So, we can say that an information system designed for market information-related activities is considered as Marketing Information System (MIS). It is defined as the collection of market information system and also its analysis, storage, interpretation, and implementation through internal and external resources. MIS is an ongoing and regular process.
The main purpose of the marketing information system is to provide authenticated and relevant information to market decision-makers to effective decision-making related to marketing activities i.e. product, pricing, distribution, branding and promotion, packaging, etc.
In today’s scenario, the marketing function is exceptionally competent and dynamic. The marketing people need to adopt required changes by considering changing marketing environment. The information which is the fundamental input in this helps in understanding the current market situation and to forecast the future as well.
So, an organization requires continuous market information to keep track of development and changes in the respective market. A marketing manager needs a system that facilitates providing necessary information related to change in customer preferences, competitor’s strategy, change in distribution pattern, latest techniques or trends in promotion practice, etc. on regular basis. This system is termed as a marketing information system.
Definitions of Marketing Information System by different scholars
- Philip Kotler has defined the marketing information system as a continuous system of interaction of people and processes to collect, sort, interpret, and distribute correct and timely information for the use of marketing managers or decision-makers so that effective planning, implementation, and control of marketing activities can be achieved.
- According to Cundiff, Still, and Govoni, the Marketing information system is a set of procedures in an organized way, routines of information handling, and reporting methods that are designed to provide the required information for the marketing decision-making process.
- Cox and K. Gonod viewed MIS as a set of procedures and techniques that are required for the collection, analysis, and interpretation of already planned and regular information in taking marketing-related decisions.
Characteristics of Marketing Information System
Below are categorized as main characteristics or features of MIS:
- Continuous and regular or permanent system
- Based on the objective of providing correct, timely information
- A system that is based on computers
- Useful in all management levels
- Information collection through both internal and external resources
- Facilitates decision-making process of marketing
- Consists of components that are inter-related
We’ve thoroughly explained the characteristics of MIS in a separate article here ➡️ https://studiousguy.com/characteristics-of-marketing-information-system/
Scope of Marketing Information System
Implementation of marketing strategy:
MIS not only helps in the launching of products and validating marketing strategies co-ordination but also is an integral system of CRM (Customer relationship management), SFA (Salesforce automation) system, etc. It facilitates decision-making authorities to manage the sales staff and customer-dealing more effectively and efficiently.
Development of marketing strategy:
MIS also provides the required information for developing a marketing strategy. It extends the support by facilitating in defining strategy for new product development, positioning strategy of products, marketing communication strategy i.e. advertisements, PR, promotional tools, etc., pricing and distribution strategy, customer relationship strategy and mergers & alliances.
Effective and close market monitoring:
MIS contributes to identifying prospective market segments and market environment monitoring to keep track of changes in customer preference, competitors, technology advancements, economic circumstances, and government policies, etc. during market research.
MIS consists of different sales, marketing, and operation related marketing process systems that are used in daily marketing operational tasks like database marketing or direct mailing, phone-based marketing, management of operational sales, etc.
Support Management and Decision Making:
MIS also supports the decision-making process of management. Different management functions like planning, coordinating, organizing, directing, and controlling require MIS support.
Integration of functions:
MIS also facilitates integration or coordination of marketing activities within the marketing department and between marketing and other functions of organization i.e. production, finance, purchase, customer service, etc.
Importance or benefits of Marketing Information System
- Helps in the prediction of customer demand
- Identification of market complexity
- Keeps organization up-to-date on changing economic or market conditions
- Competitor analysis
- Provides the latest information on technology advancements
- Smooth flow of information for better consumer relation and service
- Facilitates marketing planning activities
We’ve thoroughly explained the benefits of marketing information system in a separate article here ➡️ https://studiousguy.com/benefits-of-marketing-information-system-mis/
Classification of Marketing Information System
The marketing function requires diverse and lots of information. Also, it can be classified in the below forms:
a) According to the final purpose or use of the information
As per this, there are 4 categories of marketing information:
- Marketing planning related information
- Marketing operation-related information
- Information for key decision-making of marketing
- Marketing control related information
b) According to the information’s content-type
According to this classification of the marketing information system, below subject-matter or content of the information are included:
- Product or service
- Distribution channels
- Promotion activities
- Sales workforce
- Sales techniques
- Organization’s internal environment
- Organization’s external environment
Marketing Information System Process
Following steps are involved in the process of effective MIS
1. Analysis of objectives or goals
The initial process of MIS starts with defining or establishing clear objectives that can be initiating new product development or defining a corporate strategy or tracking activities of a campaign, etc. These objectives help in deciding for the required data to be used in the system of an organization.
2. Analysis of metrics
After goal establishment, the next step is to determine the data metrics or points to be incorporated in the marketing information system of an organization. While defining goals, different internal and external data is required to be considered. For example, for new product design or strategy formulation; external market inputs like forecasting economic trends or competitive research can be focus areas. Similarly, more focus areas can be internal inputs or metrics like sales records in tracking a product campaign.
3. Coordinating marketing team or department
Once goal and data availability are defined then further step is the identification of data fitment in the MIS process. Determining the marketing team that will utilize and maintain data; also identifying decisions require marketing department coordination. The need for other groups like sales or products is also considered if the system is being used by them.
4. Identification of tools
The next step is related to identifying the supporting tools to be used for marketing decisions. For example, spreadsheets may be considered for simple systems while complex systems required more comprehensive tools like dashboards, visualization tools having more extensive data, etc. A more technical system requires an IT expert to assist in the MIS process.
5. Implementing the system
The final step of MIS is effective implementation of the system or to put the system into action that includes all required data collection, integration of data into tools, etc.
Components of Marketing Information System
Different parts, subparts of MIS form its components. Typically, marketing information system has 4 components that are inter-related to each other i.e.
- Internal system related to reports: Helps in providing internal information of the organization that is reliable and useful.
- System-related to marketing research: To sort out specific marketing issues of an organization.
- Market intelligence-based system: For data or information collection from external resources or external market.
- Marketing related decision support system (MDSS): Consists of tools that facilitate marketing decision-makers in analyzing data or information for taking effective decisions.
We’ve thoroughly explained the components of Marketing Information System in a separate article here ➡️ https://studiousguy.com/components-of-marketing-information-system-mis/
Types of Marketing Information System
There are 3 types of Marketing Information System that marketing managers use to gain useful information to define an effective marketing strategy or decisions:
- Internal data
- Competitive intelligence
- Marketing research
We’ve thoroughly explained the types of marketing information system in a separate article here ➡️ https://studiousguy.com/types-of-marketing-information-system/
The marketing information system is considered as the backbone of marketing as the survival and success of an organization is not possible. MIS contributes by supporting different roles of managers i.e. informational, decisional, and interpersonal roles. It is required in all management levels i.e. operational decisions, executive and strategic decisions. So organizations must have a marketing information system.