Marketing Definitions (Q-R-S)
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Q    R    S

Qualified Available Market - the individuals and organizations in a particular market who are interested in a product, can afford it, and who are not prevented from purchasing by any access barrier or legal restriction.

Qualifying the Prospect - asking questions to discover whether a prospective buyer has a need for the product, can afford it, and has the authority to buy.

Qualitative Marketing Research - marketing research which is not generally quantifiable; research which seeks insights into a marketing situation but which does not require statistical accuracy. Qualitative research techniques include focus groups, depth interviews and projection techniques such as free associations, psycho drawing and psychodrama.

Qualitative Objectives - objectives which cannot be expressed in quantifiable terms; for example, a salesperson might set as an objective in a specific period the acquisition of certain product knowledge, or the forming of a close business relationship with the buyer from a major account.

Quality Circles - a management technique with its origin in Japanese industry, developed as a means of increasing productivity; groups of autonomous workers, responsible for their own output, meet together voluntarily to plan their work so that a better quality product results and so that the work of other autonomous groups further down the production line is not delayed.

Quality Controls - measures taken by organizations to ensure that all legal requirements, and consumer expectations, of their products are met; good product performance, achieved by efficient quality control, helps to ensure that consumers will become repeat purchasers.

Quality Creep - a phenomenon which, in a counter-productive way, impels a manufacturer to enhance a product over time, increasing its price and thereby diminishing its appeal to the market segment for which it was originally intended.

Quality Modification - any change made to the quality of a product.

Quantitative Marketing Research - marketing research that can be quantified; the collection of data that can be expressed in numerical terms.

Quantitative Objectives - objectives which can be expressed in specific numerical terms; for example, a salesperson might set as an objective for his or her territory "to increase sales revenue of Product X by 10% in 2006".

Quantity Discount - a price reduction made to encourage a purchaser to order a larger quantity than would otherwise have been purchased.

Question Method - handling a buyer's objection by making the prospect answer his or her own objection. If, for example, the buyer objects that the item being considered for purchase is excellent but that the price of $500 is too high, the salesperson responds by asking, "Why do you feel that way?" or "Are you willing to invest $500 in an asset that will return you 100% per annum?"

Questionnaire - an instrument used for soliciting responses in a marketing research survey; a list of questions.

Questionnaire Pre-testing - the trialing of a questionnaire to be used in a marketing research study on a small sample of respondents from the target group prior to its full-scale use in order to eliminate ambiguities and other design problems.

Quick Ratio - one of three financial ratios commonly used to evaluate a firm's liquidity; calculated by dividing current assets less stock on hand by current liabilities.

Quota - any restriction imposed by law on the quantity of a product which can be produced or imported; a form of protectionism.

Quota Sample - a non-probability sample, chosen without regard to location, representative ness, etc. from individuals who meet certain specified criteria.


R    Q    S

R and D - abbrev. Research and Development.

Rational Appeals in Advertising - advertising messages, usually product-feature based, in which advertisers attempt to achieve their objectives by appeals to logic and reason rather than to the emotions.

Rational Buying Motives - reasons for buying that are based on logic or judgment rather than on emotion.

Raw Materials - a classification of industrial goods that are basic materials which become part of a physical product in the manufacturing process.

Reach - the percentage of the target audience which will be exposed to at least one advertisement during the specified period of the campaign.

Reactive Marketing Control Systems - evaluation and control systems in which management finds that marketing performance is not satisfactory and takes corrective action; after-the-fact and steering control are reactive systems.

Reactive Marketing Strategies - marketing activities forced upon an organization by competitive action; defensive strategies.

Real Positioning - the modification of a product offering so that it delivers more satisfactorily the benefits those buyers of this kind of product desire.

Rebate - a temporary price reduction to encourage immediate purchase.

Recall Tests - a means of evaluating the effectiveness of a company's recent advertising by asking respondents to bring to mind advertisements they have read, heard or viewed.

Receiver - the target of a message in the communication process.

Reciprocity - a practice, which may be illegal under the Trade Practices Act, in which a firm gives purchasing preference to a firm to which it sells.

Recognition Tests - a means of evaluating the effectiveness of a firm's recent advertising; respondents are shown an advertisement, asked if they have seen it before, and, if so, are quizzed on its contents.

Recycling - the collection and processing of used materials for reuse.

Redemption - the conversion of a sales promotion coupon to a purchase.

Redemption Rate - the number of sales promotion coupons converted to purchases expressed as a percentage of the number distributed.

Reduced Price Pack - a type of consumer sales promotion in which two or more units of the same product are banded together and sold at a lower price.

Reference Groups - all of those whose influence plays some part in the buying behaviour of consumers.

Referral Selling - selling to customers whose names have been suggested by previous satisfied customers.

Reflective Probes - neutral statements of the salesperson reaffirming or repeating a customer's comment in order to stimulate the customer to provide more information.

Regional Brands - manufacturers' brands sold only in certain regions.

Regional Shopping Centre - a major retail shopping complex serving a distinct geographic area of a city or state, housing at least one major full-line department store and a number of other retailers and service providers.

Registered Design - a form of legal protection against the copying by a competitor of the external appearance of a product.

Regressive Commission - a sales commission system in which the rate of commission paid decreases with the quantity of goods sold.

Regulatory Environment - that part of the firm's external marketing environment on which legal and political forces act to change regulations which affect the marketing effort; regulation changes can pose threats or present opportunities.

Reinforcement - the reward or punishment delivered by a particular response to a stimulus.

Reinforcement Advertising - advertising intended to reassure purchasers, to tell them that they have done the right thing in buying the particular product and to explain how to get the best results and most satisfaction from its use; the purpose of reinforcement advertising is to maintain market share.

Relationship Selling - selling in which the primary objective is the building of long-term relationships with customers from which repeat business will flow.

Relative Advantage - the degree to which a new product is superior to an existing one; a major determinant of the rate of adoption of a new product. See Adoption Rate Determinants.

Relative Market Share - the size of a company's share of the market compared to that of competitors.

Reliability - the accuracy with which data in a marketing research study has been collected; a reliable marketing research study should produce similar results if repeated.

Remarketing - marketing activity intended to encourage renewed use of a product in which market interest has declined.

Reminder Advertising - advertising aimed at reminding a target market that a product is available as opposed to informing or persuading it; typically associated with products in the mature stage of their life cycle.

Repositioning - arranging for a product or brand to occupy some other clear and distinctive position in the market and in the minds of target consumers than that which it presently occupies; repositioning may be necessary or desirable if sales expectations are not being met, or to allow for the introduction to the market of a new product or brand.

Representativeness - the degree to which a sample of consumers in a marketing research study represents the characteristics of the population as a whole.

Resale Price Maintenance - a practice, now illegal in Australia, in which the manufacturer fixes the price at which a buyer may resell the product.

Research Design - the controlling plan for a marketing research study in which the methods and procedures for collecting and analyzing the information to be collected is specified.

Researcher Controlled Sampling - a form of non-probability sampling in which the researcher selects the respondents in a marketing research study. It may result in researcher bias.

Reseller - a middleman; one who buys merchandise to resell it at a profit.

Reseller Market - the market consisting of wholesalers and retailers who buy products for resale purposes.

Response Bias - the inclination of respondents in a marketing research survey to give the answer that they believe the interviewer wants to hear.

Response Elasticity - a measure of the degree to which individuals or groups respond to a marketing program.

Response Selling - an elementary form of selling, common in retailing, in which the salesperson simply responds to the customer's demands; little creativity or persuasion is used.

Response Time - the time taken by a firm to answer a customer inquiry about the status of an order.

Responsiveness - the degree to which people control their emotions when relating to others; used in selling as an indicator of social style.

Restraint of Trade - any action which damages in some way another's opportunity to carry on a business.

Retail Advertising - advertising by retailers direct to consumers.

Retail Buyer - an individual employed by a retailer primarily to buy merchandise for resale through the store.

Retail Image - the perception that consumers have of a particular store and of the experience of shopping there.

Retail Mix - the mix of variables, including location, merchandise, communications, price, services, physical attributes and personnel, which form the overall strategic marketing components of retailing.

Retailers - members of the distribution channel who sell directly to the consumer.

Retailer Cooperative - a wholesaling operation established by a group of retailers to give themselves a buying advantage.

Retailing - the activity of selling to buyers who are buying for their own ultimate consumption.

Return on Assets Managed - a measure of a firm's profitability; after-tax profit expressed as a percentage of assets used to make it.

Return on Equity - a measure of a firm's profitability; profit achieved in a given period is expressed as a percentage of the total amount invested in the firm by its owners.

Return on Investment - a measure of a firm's profitability in which profits is expressed as a percentage of investment.

Reusable Container - a type of consumer sales promotion in which potential customers are encouraged to buy a particular product because it is packaged in a container that can be used for some other useful purpose when empty.

Reverse Marketing Channel - a marketing channel in which goods (to be recycled or reprocessed) flow backward from consumer to intermediaries to producer; also called a Backward Marketing Channel..

Reverse Reciprocity - a practice in which a firm gives supply preference to another from which it buys.

Risk - the chance a purchaser takes that the product will not function as expected or satisfy the felt want.

Risk Avoidance - measures including acquiring information, seeking reassurance from family and friends, obtaining advice from experts, etc. taken by purchasers to reduce the level of anxiety they experience when buying.

ROAM - abbrev. Return on Assets Managed.

ROI - abbrev. Return on Investment.

Role Playing - an exercise commonly used in sales training in which one person acts the part of a salesperson and another a buyer to practice selling skills.

Rollout - the launch of a new product on a region by region basis as opposed to a national introduction; the rollout is intended to minimize the risk and to reduce the investment in production and marketing.

Route Sales force - a sales team consisting of salespeople who call on existing customers to take orders for the company's products; the route sales force does not sell in the traditional sense, but merely inspects a retailer's shelves and restocks them as required.

Routine Response Behaviour - a buying situation in which the buyer has had considerable past experience; also called Automatic Response Behaviour or Habitual Response Behaviour.

Routing - the planning of the best route to be followed by a sales representative in making a series of sales calls; good routing raises both the number of calls the representative is able to make and the ratio of selling time to non-selling time.

Run-Out Strategy - a strategic decision to allow a product in the decline stage of its life-cycle to continue to be sold, especially if the product has a sizable hard-core market which insists on buying it; often, the marketer may raise the price a little to obtain a slight premium price while paring all promotional costs.


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S-Type Response - a response to an advertisement or an advertising campaign which is slow to take effect but gradually gathers pace.

Safety Needs - the desire of humans for safety, shelter, security and warmth.

Safety Recall - the request by a manufacturer for the return of a particular batch or model of a product (for repair, replacement or credit) when the product has been found to be defective or unsafe.

Safety Stock - a level of stock over and above expected requirements held in inventory as a precaution against unusually heavy demand, delays in supply, etc.

Salary Plan - a sales force compensation method in which salespeople are paid a straight salary; a salary plan approach provides security and stability but may not provide the incentive associated with commission payments.

Sale Advertising - advertising, common in retailing, which announces the sale of products at temporarily or permanently reduced prices.

Sales Administration-to-Sales Ratio - a marketing control measure used to determine whether the amount spent on sales administration in a given period was excessive; total expenditure on sales administration is expressed as a percentage of total sales revenue for the same period.

Sales Analysis - the break-down of sales figures by region, product, customer, market, etc. for a given period as a control measure.

Sales Aptitude Tests - tests used to determine the suitability of applicants for positions in the sales force.

Sales Branch - a manufacturer's office established simply to facilitate sales; no manufacturing is done at this location.

Sales Calls - the visits salespeople make to a buyer's premises in order to sell their companies' products.

Sales Contests - sales promotions aimed at members of a company's sales force; sales contests are competitions designed to boost sales and lift performance by offering awards or prizes to top-achievers in a sales team in a given period.

Sales Effect of Advertising - the effectiveness of an advertisement or advertising campaign in boosting sales of a product; generally hard to measure as sales may be influenced by factors other than advertising, such as the product's price, its other features, its availability and the actions of competitors.

Sales Effect Research - marketing research to assess the effect an advertisement or some other promotional activity is having, or has had, on sales of the product being advertised.

Sales Engineer - a salesperson hired primarily for engineering knowledge or strong technical skills.

Sales Force Composite - a method of forecasting future demand for a product by adding together what each member of the sales force expects to be able to sell in his or her territory.

Sales Force Mix - the mix of individual territory representatives, national account sales teams, telemarketers, etc in a firm's total salesforce.

Sales Forecast - an estimation of the likely volume of sales, measured in dollars and units, for a future planning period; typically, sales forecasting is done on the basis of past trends, sales force estimations, survey of consumer buying intentions, managerial judgment, or quantitative models.

Sales Itinerary - a written schedule of planned sales calls, specifying the date, location and objective of each call.

Sales Kit - a collection of sales materials, such as brochures, calendars, signs and posters, prepared to explain a particular promotion to retailers; it will usually include a full advertising schedule..

Sales Leads - telephone inquiries, letters, responses to advertising or direct mail, etc that direct a salesperson to a prospective customer.

Sales Literature - printed materials (brochures, catalogues, price lists, etc.) to be used as selling aids.

Sales Management - the process of planning, organizing, controlling and evaluating the activities of the sales force.

Sales Manual - a set of printed materials containing product descriptions and related information for the guidance of sales representatives and their customers.

Sales Office - premises of an organization used as a base for all or part of the sales team but not for carrying inventory.

Sales Party - a form of non-store retailing in which a manufacturer's products are displayed, for group selling, at an in-home party.

Sales Personnel Recruitment - identifying appropriate sources of sales personnel and attracting applicants to the firm.

Sales Planning - the assessment of the current situation in a sales region, the setting of objectives, the formulation of strategies and tactics, and the establishment of control and evaluation procedures.

Sales Potential - an organizationís expected sales of a product in a given market for a specified period; the share of the total market that a firm can reasonably expect to attain in a given time. See Market Potential.

Sales Presentation - a salesperson's persuasive demonstration or display of a product to a prospective buyer in order to make a sale.

Sales Promotion - a form of promotion which encourages customers to buy products by offering incentives, such as contests, coupons, sweepstakes, samples, free gifts and so on; one of the four major elements (with advertising, personal selling and publicity) of the promotion mix.

Sales Promotion-to-Sales Ratio - a marketing control measure used to determine whether the amount spent on sales promotion was excessive; total expenditure on sales promotion in a given period is expressed as a percentage of total sales revenue for the same period.

Sales Quota - a sales assignment, goal or target set for a salesperson in a given accounting period; commonly used types of sales quotas are dollar volume quotas, unit volume quotas, gross margin quotas, net profit quotas and activity quotas.

Sales Rally - a meeting or conference held specifically to motivate members of the sales team to greater efforts with a particular product or product range.

Sales Report - a salesperson's detailed record of sales calls and results for a given period; typically, a sales report will include information such as the sales volume per product or product line, the number of existing and new accounts called upon, and the expenses incurred in making the calls.

Sales Representative - a salesperson; an individual employed to sell goods on behalf of a producer or some other member of a marketing channel by contacting prospective customers and developing in them an interest in the company's products.

Sales Quota - the expected level of sales for a territory in a given period; a sales quota is the expression of a territory's volume and profit objectives.

Sales Resistance - anything the prospective buyer says or does to prevent or delay the salesperson from closing the sale.

Sales Tactics - the planned day-to-day activities of the sales team when implementing the strategies it hopes will achieve its objectives.

Sales Tasks - the job activities carried out by salespeople; these may include direct selling tasks (making product presentations to prospective buyers, etc), indirect selling tasks (mailing sales literature to new and prospective accounts, etc) and non-selling tasks (attending sales meetings, writing call reports, etc).

Sales Territory - the specific region or group of customers for which a salesperson has direct responsibility.

Sales Territory Performance Modeling - a method of evaluating sales territory performance in which a model depicting the environmental factors that may have impacted upon it, and upon the salesperson assigned to it, is constructed; the model assists a sales supervisor to better understand the quality of the performance.

Sales Training - formal or informal coaching in sales methods, product knowledge, and account handling given to a sales representative by another more experienced salesperson, a sales manager or a specialist sales trainer.

Sales Volume - the total revenue produced or the total number of units of a product sold in a given period.

Sales Volume Analysis - a detailed study of an organizationís sales, in terms of units or revenue, for a specified period; the analysis of sales volume (by sales region or territory, industry, customer type, etc) is commonly used as an aid in determining the effectiveness of the selling effort.

Sales Wave Experiment - a technique used to test consumer reaction to new products prior to full-scale commercialization; new products are placed in consumer homes to determine the reaction to them, and the rate at which the products are repurchased is tracked.

Sales-Response Function - a measure of the likely level of sales in a given period at different levels of expenditure on any of the major marketing mix variables.

Samples - products distributed free of charge to prospective buyers to promote future purchases.

Sampling - a promotional activity in which consumers are allowed to experience a good or service free of charge or at a greatly reduced cost.

Sampling Error - a measure of the extent to which the chosen sample in a marketing research study can be expected to represent the total population on the characteristics being studied.

Sampling Frame - the source from which sampling units (respondents) are chosen in a marketing research study; commonly used sampling frames are telephone books and electoral rolls.

Sampling Plan - a scheme outlining the group (or groups) to be surveyed in a marketing research study, how many individuals within the group are to be chosen, and on what basis that choice is to be made.

Sampling Principle - the idea that a small number of randomly chosen units (the sample) of a total population (the universe) will tend to have the same characteristics, and in the same proportion, as the population as a whole.

Sampling Unit - the individual members chosen from a total population as respondents in a marketing research study.

Satisficing - a planning philosophy implying a firm's intention to continue to carry on its present operations in much the same way as it has always done.

SBU - abbrev. Strategic Business Unit.

Scaled Response - questions requiring respondents to a survey to rate a company, product, service, etc. on a scale provided.

Scanner Systems - electronic equipment which allows product bar codes to be read; the information recorded by the scanning devices is used in marketing decision making, including inventory control.

Scrambled Assortment - an assortment strategy in which a reseller decides to carry dissimilar or unrelated lines to generate additional sales; for example, a news agency might add indoor plants and housewares to its range of newspapers, stationery and books. Also known as Scrambled Merchandising.

Screening - an early stage in the new product development process when ideas for new products are sifted or screened to identify those that the firm might profitably develop; two broad approaches to idea screening are possible: managerial judgment and customer evaluation.

Screening Interview - an early stage in the sales hiring process when supervisors meet with applicants to arouse further interest in the most promising and to identify those who are unsuitable.

Seasonal Discount - a reduced price to encourage the purchase of a particular product in the off-season; perhaps better thought of as an "out-of-season" discount. See Discount.

Seasonal Forecast Adjustments - the adjustment of monthly forecasts based on time series projections of historical data to take account of short-term changes in volume caused by seasonal variations.

Seasonal Stock - inventory additional to expected needs kept in case of an unusually heavy seasonal demand or for promotional campaigns; also referred to as Promotional Stock.

Secondary Data - information that is obtained from previously published materials, such as books, magazines, newspapers, government census publications and company reports and files.

Secondary Packaging - a box or other protective wrapping in which the product in its primary package is kept until ready for use. See Primary packaging; Shipping Packaging.

Secondary Research - the collection of marketing research data using previously published sources. See Primary Research.

Segmentation Bases - the basic dimensions - geographic, demographic, psychographic and behaviouristic - upon which a heterogeneous market can be divided into relatively homogeneous groups.

Segmentation Strategies - specific marketing approaches available to, or taken by, a firm in relation to the market segment or segments it wishes to target; four specific segmentation strategies are available - concentrated segmentation strategy, market segment expansion strategy, product line expansion strategy and differentiated segmentation strategy. See Concentrated Segmentation Strategy; Market Segment Expansion Strategy; Product Line Expansion Strategy; Differentiated Segmentation Strategy.

Selective Advertising - advertising intended to create demand for a specific brand rather than for the whole product category or class.

Selective Binding Programs for Advertisers - the customizing of magazines and similar print media for specific groups of subscribers and advertisers; in selective binding programs, same issue of a magazine can be tailored for different audiences.

Selective Demand - demand for a specific brand within a particular product class.

Selective Distortion - the perceptual process which occurs when people subconsciously try to make new information fit their old ideas about something. See Selective Exposure; Selective Retention.

Selective Distribution - making a product available in more than one outlet, but not in as many as are willing to stock it; also referred to as Selective Selling. See Distribution Intensity.

Selective Exposure - the perception by an individual of certain, more relevant, facts or advertisements but not of others; also called Selective Perception.

Selective Retention - the perceptual process in which people subconsciously are most apt to remember information that confirms their previously held attitudes.

Self-Liquidator - a form of consumer sales promotion in which money and proof of purchase of a product (package tops, labels, etc) are traded in for an item of merchandise, usually sold below normal retail price; also called a self-liquidating premium.

Sell-Off Period - the duration of a particular sales promotion; the time from the launch of the sales promotion to the end of the special offer.

Sell-Through Quantity - the quantity of merchandise required for a sales promotion.

Seller's Market - a market in which there is a shortage of particular goods or services for sale.

Selling Concept - the philosophy or orientation of an organization which emphasizes aggressive selling to achieve its objectives; firms characterized by this approach often rely upon pressure selling and manipulative sales techniques to win business.

Selling Process - the separate, but related, stages forming the activity of personal selling; these include preapproach, approach, need identification, presentation, handling objections, closing the sale and post-sale follow-up.

Selling Up - a practice in selling aimed at convincing the customer to buy a higher-priced item than the one originally enquired about.

Selling-In - the process of educating the sales force and distributors to sell a new product as part of the preparation for its launch; the development of sales kits, briefings on the target market and competition, and outlining the organizationís plans to create consumer demand may be involved.

Semantic Differential - a rating scale technique using pairs of words of opposite meaning.

Seminar Selling - bringing together a number of prospective buyers at the same time for a sales presentation.

Sender - the originator of the message in the communication process; also called the Source.

Sensory Retailing - a recent trend in retailing in which the retailer attempts to position the store and attract customers by making a visit to it an exciting visual, auditory, etc. experience. See Atmospherics.

Sequential Segmentation - the division of a heterogeneous market into relatively homogeneous groups on one basis (for example, geographically), followed by further segmentation on some other basis (for example, end-user type).

Served Market - that part of the total market which a company decides to target; also called the Target Market.

Service - an intangible product; any product offering that is essentially intangible.

Service Management System - the equivalent of a product management system for service organizations.

Service Mark - a mark, sign, symbol, slogan, etc. that performs the same function for a service as a trademark does for a tangible product.

Service Mix - the range of services offered by a services marketing company.

Service Sector - the part of industry or business which deals with the marketing and selling of intangible products rather than physical goods.

Service-Firm-Sponsored Retail Franchising - a system of service product delivery in which an organization producing a service (e.g. car rental, restaurants, financial services, etc.) sets up a number of independently-owned franchised outlets in locations convenient to its customers.

Services Characteristics - the features of services that distinguish them from tangible products; these are intangibility, variability, inseparability and perishability. See Inseparability; Intangibility; Perishability; Variability.

Services Marketing - the marketing of intangible products, such as hairdressing, cleaning, insurance and travel.

Services Selling - the selling of intangible products.

Shelf Facings - the number of units of a product that are visible at the front of a retail store shelf; generally, high-volume categories will be allocated more shelf facings than low-volume categories.

Shelf Life - the period of time in which a product can remain on display in a retail store before the expiration of its "use by" date. -

Shelf Management - the process of determining the number and location of shelf facings in a retail store.

Shelf-Talker - a sign or tag used in a retail store to focus customer attention on a promoted product; especially useful in in-aisle promotions when products are difficult to shelve in special ways.

Shipping Packaging - outer packaging (cartons, for example) in which products are packed for storage and transport.

Shopping Goods - consumer goods that the customer typically compares for suitability, quality, price, features, etc. before selection and purchase. See Convenience Goods; Specialty Goods.

Short-Run Average Cost - the average cost per unit of production of a set or group of products in the short term. Note that in the long term, the average cost may be lower due to the effect of experience.

Short-Term Profit Maximization - a pricing objective in which a firm aims to make as much profit as possible as quickly as possible; maximum market penetration and long-term profit considerations are ignored.

Shrinkage - a term used in retailing to refer to the theft of merchandise by customers and employees; measures to control shrinkage include mirrors, video cameras, security guards and alarms that sound when tagged merchandise is carried out of the store.

Silent Close - a closing technique in which the salesperson presents or demonstrates the product to the prospective buyer and then deliberately stops talking; the salesperson simply waits for a favourable response from the buyer.

Simple Random Sample - a sample in which each member of the population has an equal chance of being chosen.

Simulated Store Test - a form of pre-testing of new product introductions prior to full-scale commercialization; to study their behaviour towards the new products, consumers selected from the target market are asked to shop in test supermarket facilities into which the new products have been placed.

Single Brand Name - a brand name which is not accompanied by any other family or corporate brand name; for example, "Surf" washing powder; "Pal" dog food, etc. Sometimes called an Individual Brand name.

Single Niching - a strategy followed by companies which operate in only one market niche.

Single-Line Store - a retail store selling a wide assortment of goods in a basic line, such as women's clothing, hardware, cosmetics.

Single-Product Strategy - the decision by a producer to offer only one product variant with few, if any, options.

Single-Source Data - marketing research information, collected from the same source - by people-meters and scanning devices, for example - that makes it possible to link an individual's purchasing behaviour to specific media exposure.

Singles Market - a market segment, regarded as both a lifestyle and a demographic category, which includes widowed and divorced people as well as "never-been-married" singles.

Sink-or-Swim Sales Training - the practice of throwing new sales recruits straight into the field without formal training so that they have to learn fast or risk losing their jobs.

Situation Analysis - the process of gathering information on the internal and external environments to assess the firm's current strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and to guide its goals and objectives.

SKU - abbrev. Stock-Keeping Unit.

Sliding Commission - a compensation method in which salespeople are paid commissions at a changing rate depending on the quantity sold.

Sliding Down the Demand Curve - a pricing method in which the initial price is set at the highest possible level and then gradually reduced to attract successive waves of purchasers as demand diminishes.

Slippage - in sales promotion, the percentage of purchasers who fail to redeem an offer made with the purchase.

Slotting Allowance - a fee paid by a manufacturer to a supermarket chain for shelf space for a new product; also referred to as the Stocking Allowance, Introductory Allowance, Shelf Fee or Street Money.

Small Order Problem - the problem of coping with sales orders which are so small that the cost of filling them offsets the profit.

Smart Card - an ultra-thin card, similar to a bankcard or credit card, containing computer chips capable of receiving, storing and transmitting significant amounts of data with marketing applications.

Social Audit - a review and evaluation of the social benefits and social costs pertaining to a particular product.

Social Class - the level of society to which an individual belongs; Australians, generally, perceive themselves as being members of either the upper-middle class, middle class or working class.

Social Marketing - the design, implementation and control of marketing activity intended to promote social causes or ideas within a target group in a society; a form of non-profit marketing.

Social Responsibility in Marketing - the recognition by marketers that the well-being of society and customer satisfaction is as important as profits in assessing marketing performance.

Social Risk - concern or uncertainty in the buyer's mind that the purchase of the product under consideration will not be approved of by others.

Sociocultural Environment - that part of the firm's external marketing environment in which social or cultural changes (that is, changes to the value system of a society) act to affect the firm's marketing effort; the changing sociocultural environment may pose threats or present opportunities.

Socioeconomic Variables - factors of a social and economic nature (occupation, income, etc) which indicate a person's status within a community.

Soft Sell - a low-pressure selling situation; a selling situation in which the buyer has no feeling of being coerced.

Sole Survivor - the final stage in the family life cycle; two sub-categories are used by marketers in examining consumer behaviour - sole survivor, working and sole survivor, retired.

Solo Mailing - a database innovation in which a customized marketing piece is prepared to appeal to one individual's interests.

Source Attractiveness - in personal selling, the likeability or personableness of the salesperson.

Source Credibility - in personal selling, the believability of the salesperson.

Source Objection - an objection by a prospective buyer leveled against the firm represented by the salesperson.

Special Event Pricing - reducing prices in retail stores at certain times of the year (e.g. immediately after Christmas) to attract customers.

Special Interest Groups - groups of consumers with concerns about particular products or product categories; for example, special interest groups have spoken out about the marketing of cigarettes, high-sugar breakfast cereals for children, fast foods with low nutritional value, etc.

Specialty Merchandise Wholesaler - a wholesaler that specializes in one product line (or a few product lines) but carries the line or lines in considerable depth.

Specialty Retailing - retail stores offering limited, specialized lines but carrying a deep assortment within the lines.

Specialty Advertising - an advertiser's message printed on small items such as diaries, note-pads and key-rings, usually to give away without obligation to prospective customers.

Specialty Distributor - a distributor that concentrates on one product line but carries a deep assortment within the line.

Specialty Goods - consumer goods for which the customer has strong preference and is prepared to search for extensively to select and purchase the most suitable. See Convenience Goods; Shopping Goods.

Specialty Store - a retail store typically carrying only one, or part of one, product line but having considerable depth within the line; examples include stores selling only jogging shoes for women, or men's hats.

Sponsor Training - pairing sales recruits with experienced salespeople who are responsible for their training in the field.

Spot Buy - in advertising, the buying of media time in a few selected markets only.

Spotter - a person who receives a fee for providing a salesperson with leads to prospects to which sales are made.

Stabilizing Price - a price set for a product with the intention of keeping prices steady within an industry in order to avoid a price war.

Stagflation - a term coined to describe a situation which exists in an economy when high unemployment and rising prices and wages occur together.

Standard Product Classes - categories into which products are grouped using formal systems such as the Australian Standard Industrial Classification and the Australian Standard Commodity Classification. See Australian Bureau of Statistics; Casual Product Classes.

Standard Test Market - a form of test market in which the company selects a small number of representative cities in which to trial the full marketing mix prior to a new product launch. See

Standardized Marketing Mix - a strategy employed by a multinational company in attempting to use one marketing mix to sell its products world-wide; the approach minimizes cost but may result in a smaller market than would be possible with a unique marketing program for each country. See Customized Marketing Mix.

Standing Room Only - a closing technique in which the salesperson tries to get a quick commitment to a purchase by telling the buyer that the demand for the product is heavy and that only a limited quantity is left.

Staples - a sub-category of convenience goods consisting of frequently purchased foodstuffs.

Stars - products in the portfolio characterized by high market share in a rapidly growing market.

Stated Objection - the reason given by a prospective buyer for not accepting the product offered; the stated objection may conceal the true objection.

Statistical Bank - a range of statistical techniques used in analysis in a marketing information system to discover the degree of reliability of the data collected and the relationships within it.

Status Quo Strategy - a reactive marketing strategy characterized by a desire to avoid confrontation with competitors; the company seeks to keep things in the industry the way they were, and thus avoid the expensive task on taking on a competitor directly.

Steering Control System - a system of marketing control in which allows for the detection of unsatisfactory marketing performance during, rather than at the end of, a planning period so that prompt corrective action can be taken; a reactive marketing control system.

Stimulation Marketing - marketing activity intended to stimulate demand for a product among those who are neither aware of it nor interested in it.

Stimulus-Response Approach - an approach to selling which relies on the salesperson's ability to say the right thing (stimulus) in order to obtain a favourable reaction from the buyer (response); often referred to as the Canned Approach because a script is commonly used.

Stockless Purchasing - a practice in which the vendor retains responsibility for carrying the bulk of the inventory and supplies items to a reseller on short notice.

Stockturn Rate - a measure of the operating efficiency of a business; it indicates the "turn over" (that is, sales of the average level of stock held in inventory) in an operating period.

Storyboard - a tool used in planning a television commercial; a poster showing a series of miniature television screens depicting the sequence of scenes in a commercial with the words to accompany each picture written below it.

Straight Rebuy - a purchase in which the customer buys the same goods in the same quantity on the same terms from the same supplier.

Straight Salary - a compensation method in which a salesperson receives salary but no commission on sales.

Strategic Business Unit - a separate operating division of a company with some degree of autonomy; commonly referred to as an SBU.

Strategic Control - the regular and systematic checking that the company's strategies are appropriate to its marketing opportunities and resources.

Strategic Gap - the difference between a company's profit objectives for a given future period and its projected level of profit for the same period.

Strategic Group - any group of companies which pursue the same clear strategies to achieve their marketing objectives.

Strategic Marketing Concept - a philosophy, focus, orientation or concept which emphasizes the proper identification of marketing opportunities as the basis for marketing planning and corporate growth; unlike the marketing concept which emphasizes consumer needs and wants, the strategic marketing concept emphasizes both consumers and competitors.

Strategic Marketing Plan - a plan outlining marketing opportunities matched to the resources and abilities of the company.

Strategic Planning - the process of determining the company's objectives and courses of action and the allocation of the necessary resources to achieve them.

Strategic Profit Model - a tool used to assess a firm's profitability; return on equity is calculated by multiplying the net profit margin by the asset turnover to obtain the return on assets which, in turn, is multiplied by the financial leverage.

Strategic Window - the point of time at which the right environmental conditions exist for a particular marketing opportunity; also referred to as a Window of Opportunity.

Strategy - a broad plan of action by which an organization hopes to achieve one or more of its marketing objectives.

Stratified Sample - a form of probability sample where respondents are chosen from a random sample of homogeneous sub-groups (according to a common characteristic) into which the total population has been divided.

Style Flexing - a deliberate attempt on the part of a salesperson to adjust his or her communication style to suit the personality of the buyer.

Subcultures - broad groups of consumers within a society's culture having similar values which distinguish them from the rest of society.

Subliminal Perception - the receipt and interpretation of stimuli received through the senses at a subconscious level.

Sub-optimization - a situation occurring in large companies when departmental or divisional leaders attempt to achieve the objectives of their particular sections at the expense of other sections.

Substantiality - one of the four major requirements (with accessibility, action ability and substantiality) for useful market segmentation; substantiality expresses the notion that the segment chosen as the target market must be large enough to be profitable. Also referred to as Significance.

Substitute Products - products that buyers perceive as having some characteristics and utilities in common (for example, potatoes and rice).

Suggestion Selling - a practice in which the salesperson seeks to increase the value of the sale by suggesting related lines, special promotions or seasonal merchandise to complement the original purchase; also called Suggestive Selling.

Summative Close - a closing technique in which the salesperson summarizes the features and benefits of the product of prime interest to the buyer point by point. See Close.

Super-Specialty Store - a retail store selling only one line of a very superior quality product or offering a very superior quality service in a limited range of goods.

Suppliers - individuals or organizations from which businesses purchase the goods and services they require to operate.

Survey - a method of obtaining primary data in a marketing research study by the use of interviews, either face-to-face, by telephone or by mail.

Survey of Buyer Intentions - a forecasting technique in which known purchasers of a product are asked to predict their requirements for a given future period.

Sustainable Competitive Advantage - the competitive edge sought by a firm which will allow it to satisfy customer needs while maintaining an advantage over its rivals because of the uniqueness of its products or its lower production or marketing costs.

Sweepstakes - a type of consumer sales promotion in which purchasers of a particular product are given an opportunity of winning attractive prizes; winners are chosen purely by chance. Also called a Lottery.

SWOT - acronym for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.

SWOT Analysis - an examination of the internal environment of a firm (mission, objectives, strategies, resources, trends, etc) to identify particular strengths and weaknesses, and its external environment (demographic, economic, technological, social and cultural, legal and political, and natural forces) to identify particular opportunities and threats.

Symbiotic Marketing - a marketing method in which one manufacturer sells its finished product to another for resale under the second manufacturer's label where that manufacturer already has access to the market through a well-established distribution system.

Synchro marketing - marketing activity intended to shift the pattern of demand to that it equates more suitably with the ideal pattern of supply.

Syncratic Decision - a purchase decision in which both husband and wife have equal influence.

Systematic Sample - a sample drawn strictly according to a pre-determined formula; for example, every eighth, or twelfth, or twentieth, etc. name is chosen.

Systems Buying - buying a complete solution to a problem or need rather than a number of component parts; for example, an organization may purchase an entire accounting system from one supplier rather than computers from one supplier, software from another, staff training from another, and so on.

Systems Selling - selling a complete solution to a problem or need rather than one or more of the component parts. For example, a swimming pool manufacturer might also sell landscaping, filtration equipment, pool chemicals, etc.


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Last modified: November 21, 2007