Barriers:Barriers are big and scary. Thinking of barriers, you probably think of things that stop you from accomplishing your goals – things that are difficult. This is true – in a way. In the context of marketing, if you don’t think about barriers and the impact that they may have on your market, it’s likely that you’ll find yourself faced with some major unforeseen challenges. After all, barriers stop people from choosing things. Because of this, they’re critical to consider when you’re analyzing consumer markets. If you don’t consider barriers, you may create a brilliant marketing plan that fails because barriers stand in the way.
That sounds scary.This presentation will show you that you should actually think of barriers are something to be appreciated. Understanding how to think about barriers – specifically, the barriers that might keep your target audience from responding to your marketing plan – will result in a more effective marketing plan for you, and hence a lot of smiling for both you and your clients.
There are two kinds of barriers: Internal and ExternalInternal: personal knowledge, beliefs, skills, abilitiesInternal barriers can be some of the most powerful even though they may not be quantitatively ‘real’ – our brains are very good powerful, and we tend to often act or decide based on our qualitative beliefs about a situation, regardless of whether our ideas can be quantitatively demonstrated.
External: existing infrastructures, technologies, economics, cultural influences, social groups (membership groups, primary groups, secondary groups), familyWe are often strongly influenced by the belief structures that we have grown up with. Therefore, when developing a marketing plan it’s very important to pay attention to what influences/influencers your target market may have encountered.
To summarize: Barriers can be either real or perceived. Barriers can be either internal or external. All types are very important to consider in your market analysis.This is all very well, but what ARE these barriers I’ve been telling you about?Barriers fall into many different categories. I’ll explain some of them to you along with examples that will clarify what each really means. I’ll continue with Jen’s sustainable fish example.
Doubting benefits: will choosing susty seafood really make a difference?Lack of understanding: what’s the big deal with susty seafood, anyway?
Doubting personal ability to use product/service: don’t think i understand enough about susty seafood to make a good choice.Too much time, effort, energy: choosing susty seafood is difficult and confusing
Physical discomfort: choosing susty seafood means I can’t eat my favorite sushi!
Concern for ‘side effects’ or unintended consequences: If I have to eat susty seafood, I won’t get enough protein. And what if we aren’t defining ‘susty’ correctly and we end up killing more fish populations or putting lots of people out of work... what if, what if, what if.
Costs: susty seafood is expensive.
Reduced pleasure or pride: I love the way unsusty seafood tastes, and it’s a prestige good, so I feel powerful when I eat it.
Lack of access: susty seafood is hard to find Not a norm ‘others aren’t doing it’: all my friends are eating non-susty seafood
What will others think?: my friends will think my preference is annoying, difficult, weird, etc.This last barrier gets at the root of many of the reasons that barriers arise in the first place: cultural, perceived, real; everything ties in.
All of this seems pretty grim. I’ve just described a lot of different barriers. It’s a wonder that, with all of these reasons to NOT to choose something, that people ever choose anything at all. So what do we do? How can we, as marketers, working with EL partners who are seeking customers to make specific decisions – how do we respond to these barriers?
Research what barriers you might encounter: Often, identifying barriers goes a long way toward diffusing their power - you can understand how to address them in your marketing plan. Research strategies:LiteratureDataGoogle
Your research can be qualitative. Sometimes, simply defining and becoming aware of the problem can be enough to fend it off. Sometimes you don’t need numbers. Focus groupsPersonal InterviewsObservationEthnographic Studies
But… numbers are so pleasant.If you’re interested in taking more time – and inQuantitativeStudies w/ large sample size, rigorous sampling procedures, controlled contextTelephone surveysOnline surveysQuestionnaires
What I’ve done here today is attempt to add to your portfolio of skills to help frame your EL partner’s product/service/behavior change. You should think of the barriers that I’ve talked about today as a set of tools that will allow you to tackle your EL projects effectively. The tools may not seem to make sense at first, at you may have to work a bit before you see how they can fit. But if you can figure out how to use barriers as tools, they will serve you well.
Remember when I was telling you five minutes ago that although ‘barriers’ sounds like a scary word – and although many of the pictures in this presentation don’t look too happy – that you should really think of barriers as a helpful thing?I hope you believe me.
Conclusion: Important to understand what barriers people might encounter w/ the product, service or behavior you are trying to introduce. Understanding these barriers will allow you to determine what marketing tools w/in the traditional ‘product, price, place, promotion you can utilize to lessen the barrier or make it obsolete.
Lyrica hammann ignite presentation decision making barriers - february 20 2011
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Resources<br />Kotler, P. & Keller, K. (2009). Marketing Management, 13th edition. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.<br />Kotler, P. & Lee, N. (2009). Up and Out of Poverty: The Social Marketing Solution. New Jersey: Wharton.<br />