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Critically evaluate how the impact of social media (Web 2 technologies) challenges and supports established marketing theories related to advertising and promotion.

Please answer each question with half a page.

Use relevant examples to support your claims

Consider strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats depending on the question

Critical Evaluation not just description

Try to remember a few key authors (maybe 2 for each subject)

Use the feedback from your assignment both the positives and negatives

Make Sure you know the basics to help underpin answers, (marketing mix , total product , brands, segmentation)

Do not forget this is about emerging themes so any examples should reflect this

Read the question and conclude by reflecting on how you have answered the question.

Review the past papers, relevant book chapters papers and your lecture notes .


1. Do ethics really concern customers? Critically discuss.

2. ‘Books are software now’ says Harper Collins UK’s digital director Nick Perrett. He believes the way we purchase, read and respond to books is being radically altered by technology. Critically evaluate this statement by contextualising your argument to the 4 p’s of the marketing mix.

3. ‘Consumption is in some sense inextricably linked to personal and collective identity’ Jackson (2005). Critically evaluate the above statement through the lens of brand management.

4. Critically evaluate how the impact of Social Media (Web 2 technologies) challenges and supports established marketing theories related to advertising and promotion.

5. Most companies are now interested in building long term relationships with a customer. Critically assess the advantages and disadvantages of relationship marketing from the perspective of both a consumer and business.

Question 6

Word-of-mouth is often said to be the oldest form of marketing communication, and online social media the newest. Both tools, though have many similarities: indeed, social media marketing is sometimes described as Virtual Word-of-Mouth.

What are the characteristics of social media and word-of-mouth that are important to marketers? To what extent are social media able to overcome the limitations of word-of-mouth? Use examples where appropriate to explain your answer.

Question 7

According to many commentators, the adoption in the 1980s by political parties of the tools and techniques of modern marketing was the beginning of the end of rational debate, the new era of ‘soundbite campaigns’. It is possible to argue, though, that political parties have historically used traditional processes such as segmentation, targeting and positioning, long before these terms were ever invented. According to this argument, politics has become remote to increasing numbers of voters precisely because it has failed to keep up with developments in marketing, particular the use of new web-based and mobile communications technologies.

Describe the more conventional approaches to marketing in politics, highlighting the ways in which traditional tools and techniques were (and still are) deployed. What has changed in the ‘business’ environment to undermine these approaches, in particular the audiences and media? Finally, suggest ways in which politicians and parties can better engage with the electorate, giving examples as appropriate.

Question 8

“Marketing identifies and satisfies customer needs: real artists, on the other hand, produce things that are radical and different, things that nobody asked for or wanted but which often create new ‘products’ by challenging existing ideas. Marketing, is backward-looking, and artists who are driven by it produce entertainment rather than art.” Evaluate this statement; is it true that mass marketing devalues something which is a higher form of human experience than the consumption of fast-moving consumer goods (fmcg)? Finally, what (if anything) can marketing learn from the arts? Use examples from music, literature or other genres to illustrate your points.

Question 9

What are services, and why do they merit a whole new approach to marketing? Taking an example of a people-centred service business, describe how marketing is practised differently, giving the reasons for these differences. How does the firm attempt to market itself in an increasingly cluttered 21st century media environment, to audiences which are ever more critical and distrusting?

Question 10

In the 1980s it was said that brands were finished, and major fast moving goods (fmcg) companies like Procter & Gamble needed to re-engineer themselves so as to

reduce their exposure to this trend. Governments and consumer groups welcomed the trend as evidence that modern audiences had begun to evaluate products and services on the basis of cost, features, benefits and utility, instead of being swayed by advertising.

The so-called ‘New Consumer’ is better educated than ever before, is increasingly sceptical and also has near perfect information through broadband connections: so why are brands stronger than ever? What role do brands play in a 21st century ‘knowledge economy’? In your answer use examples of successful and unsuccessful brands.


You are the marketing manager of a European company that makes and distributes a range of childrens’ toys. Your company currently does business with a wide range of retail outlets across the European Union and the USA. Your company is considering expanding its international marketing into a Less Developed Country (LDC).

Identify the key points the company should consider when targeting consumers in LDCs.


Compare and contrast both the theoretical and practical implications of viewing Marketing as an Art compared with viewing Marketing as a Science.


Critically appraise the value of developing a network approach to collaborative business-to-business (B2B) relationships.

You should use appropriate models to illustrate your answer.


Critically evaluate the continued relevance of segmenting the market by traditional demographic variables. You should include examples from a product category of your choice to help illustrate your argument.

Question 15

‘Viral Marketing’ was a term coined in the early part of the internet era, around 2002. It was described as the process by which consumers shared information via email, including web links, movies, pictures and brand messages. Some experts went on record to say that the ‘new’ viral marketing was nothing more than traditional word-of-mouth, but on a digital platform.

How have audiences in 2010 moved on from email, and how are they now sharing information and brand messages? How is this different from what we were doing 5-10 years ago with email and SMS? In your answer you should identify the new forms of virtual communication and how they differ from the older channels.

Finally, you should compare the new virtual word-of-mouth of 2010 with traditional face-to-face communication. Contrast and compare the two methods, and identify to what extent any inherent marketing problems with word-of-mouth are overcome by new forms of social media marketing. Use examples of consumer brands and services where appropriate to explain your answer.

Question 16

During the 1970s and 1980s the tools and techniques of marketing management came increasingly to be used by political parties in mature democracies. At election time, party managers moved their campaigns from simple promotion and selling, and into segmentation, targeting and positioning. Politicians discovered the value of market research (particularly focus groups) and re-invented themselves around new ‘brand propositions’, reformulating aspects of the political marketing mix in order to appeal to larger target markets. Party machines effectively exploited the mass media at election time to bring home their message to the mass audience.

To what extent has all this changed in the 21st century? It is argued that the fragmentation of audiences and media alike make conventional mass marketing inappropriate. Describe, using recent examples, how modern political machines have adopted new ways of trying to understand voters and to engage with them. In your answer you should identify why this has become necessary, as well as how it has become possible.

Question 17

“Art is something higher than consumer goods: art is what sets apart human beings from animals and is not something that can be bought and sold.” Evaluate this statement and the implicit criticism that mass marketing devalues art and reduces it to a mere commodity. You should take one form of art (for example music, dance, literature, painting, etc.) and show how business is able to segment, target and position artistic ‘products’ better to appeal to wider audiences. It is argued that this is a force for good as it helps to provide income and employment for a wide range of people from artists to retailers in what is called the ‘cultural production system’. Analyze this argument and decide if it has merit.

Question 18

The term ‘Generation Y’ and the ‘Timesqueeze Generation’ have been applied to a loose grouping of people also known as ‘New Consumers’. These people are said to be both numerous and difficult to reach, and are intelligent, sceptical as well as being ‘cash-rich and time-poor’. What other important characteristics define the new consumer of 2010, and how are modern marketers having to adapt their brands and communications to stay relevant? Use examples of consumer brands in your argument, illustrating products and services that have managed to make the transition.

Question 19

Demographic market segmentation was pioneered in the advertising industry of the 1930s where new audience groupings were identified by market research and targeted by emerging consumer brands. Up until the 1980s, variables such as social class, age and sex appeared to be reliable predictors of consumer behaviour, giving marketers segments to target that were large, reachable, clearly defined and homogenous.

All of this was said to have changed in the late 1980s as large discrete markets fragmented and mass audiences themselves disappeared in an explosion of new multimedia possibilities. 21st century marketing is said to have moved into an era of micro-segmentation, or even segments-of-one.

Describe the ways in which two of the traditional demographic segmentation variables such as age, occupation, social class and sex have become more difficult to use for marketing purposes: why are these factors no longer less relevant (if indeed they have lost some relevance)? In your answer use examples of products, brands and services where conventional demographic variable make little sense. These may be items which appeal across many boundaries, or product offerings which have a very narrow appeal. You should explain why the narrow bands used by marketing in the 1930s no longer apply today.

Best regards,

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