The Effectiveness of Promotional Mix Elements in the Telecommunication Sector of Nigeria
Objective of the study
The objectives of the study are;
- To examine the extent to which advertising, sales promotion, public relations, personal selling, and direct marketing influence the buying behavior of customers in the telecommunication sector of Nigeria.
- To determine the most effective promotional mix elements for telecommunication companies to use in increasing sales and customer loyalty.
- To investigate the relationship between promotional mix elements and customer loyalty in the telecommunication sector of Nigeria.
- To identify the challenges that telecommunication companies face in implementing effective promotional mix strategies in Nigeria.
- To provide recommendations on how telecommunication companies can improve their promotional mix strategies to gain a competitive advantage and increase customer loyalty.
REVIEWED OF RELATED LITERATURE
According to Ross (2001), promotional mix can be defined as the totality of marketing communication programs set aside by an organization to communicate the merits of its products and services in the mind of prospective customers. Adebisi (2006) defines promotional mix as a set of marketing activities that provides adequate and accurate information about the benefits of a firm’s products and services with the sole aim of inducing consumers to either purchase the products as soon as possible as well as keep buying the products. Fill (2006) defines promotional mix as a management process through which an organization engages with its various audiences. By understanding an audience’s communication environment, organizations seek to develop and present messages for its identified stakeholder groups, before evaluating and acting upon the responses. By conveying messages that are of significance value, audiences are encouraged to offer attitudinal and behavioural responses. The primary aim of promotional mix is to stress or place emphasis on the unique importance of a firm’s products and services as compared to competitors’ offers needed to facilitate the rapid saleof such products and services in the market. An enterprise that succeed in emphasizing the unique qualities of its offers will generate high sales turnover and gain an edge over its competitors in the market (Nour, Almahirah, Sultan, & Sultan, 2014). Advertising is any paid form of nonpersonal presentation and promotion of ideas, goods or services by an identified sponsor. Mediums of advertising include television, radio, newspapers, magazines, direct mail, billboards, and transit cards (advertisement on buses and taxis and at bus stops). Advertising has the advantage of being able to reach the masses e.g. through television networks but it can also be microtargeted to small groups of potential consumers through print advertisements in magazine (Kotler & Armstrong, 2001). Advertising is a key element of the promotional activity which has become the undisputed spokesman of modern marketing which is characterized by centralized and mass production, differentiated and branded products, and widely dispersed and sophisticated consumers (OnyenyiliOnuorah, 2005). As stated by Keller (2008), advertising serve as a powerful means of communicating strong, favourable, and unique features of a brand to customers which in turn creates long lasting positive impression about the advertised brand as well drive them to exhibit positive attitudes towards the brand by purchasing it continually. Sales promotion is a marketing communication tool designed to stimulate immediate purchase of goods and services mainly by the use of incentives. Examples of such incentivesinclude free sample, twin-pack bargain, temporary price reduction, special discount bonus, etc. (Adebisi & Babatunde, 2011). Blythe (2006) as cited in Idris, Asokere, Ajemunigbohun, Oreshile, and Olutade (2012) describes sales promotion as any activity intended to generate a temporary boost in sales. This includes several communications activities pursued in an attempt to provide added value or incentives to customers, wholesalers, retailers, or other organizational customers to stimulate immediate sales. Such efforts are usually geared towards stimulating product interest, trials or purchase. It is specifically designed to boost quick sales and ultimately create loyalty. Public relations refer to activities embarked upon by a business firm to create and enhance a favourable image within the industry and society in which it operates. Such activities include press releases, consumer training/education on effective use of products and services, events sponsorships, periodic broadcast on radio stations, television broadcast, and active participation in corporate social responsibility to promote its image within the internal and external publics (Bylon & Bede, 2013). Good public relations between a firm and its stakeholders enables the firm to capture, maintain, and improve a favourable and positive image in the media and consequently increase its customer patronage. Business enterprises deal with the public, most importantly the internal publics (workers and current customers) who are empowered to be good ambassadors of the organization in the outside world. Customers that derive high value froman organization’s products purchased and consumed keep patronizing the firm and as well promote the image of the firm favourably through positive word of mouth in the general public (Bylon & Bede, 2013). Personal selling involves verbal communication and face-to-face interaction between an organization’s sales representatives and prospective buyers in order to disseminate sufficient information, overcome prospects’ objections to sale, provide answers to questions asked by prospective customers, and generate a positive response towards the organization’s offers. (McCarthy & Perreault, 2004). This promotional activity can be measured through the level of training and skills possessed and displayed by sales representatives, salesforce’s style and appearance, the possibility of providing information, capabilities in solving problems, displaying verbal persuasion, and style presentation (Nour et al., 2014). Direct marketing refers to all activities performed by the seller to attract potential customers speedily on a oneon-one basis through the use of marketing channels such as telemarketing (telephone calls), text messages, posters and handbills, online advertisements, website visits/surveys and electronic mails. (Stone & Jacobs, 2007).
In this chapter, we described the research procedure for this study. A research methodology is a research process adopted or employed to systematically and scientifically present the results of a study to the research audience viz. a vis, the study beneficiaries.
Research designs are perceived to be an overall strategy adopted by the researcher whereby different components of the study are integrated in a logical manner to effectively address a research problem. In this study, the researcher employed the survey research design. This is due to the nature of the study whereby the opinion and views of people are sampled. According to Singleton & Straits, (2009), Survey research can use quantitative research strategies (e.g., using questionnaires with numerically rated items), qualitative research strategies (e.g., using open-ended questions), or both strategies (i.e., mixed methods). As it is often used to describe and explore human behaviour, surveys are therefore frequently used in social and psychological research.
POPULATION OF THE STUDY
According to Udoyen (2019), a study population is a group of elements or individuals as the case may be, who share similar characteristics. These similar features can include location, gender, age, sex or specific interest. The emphasis on study population is that it constitutes of individuals or elements that are homogeneous in description.
This study was carried to examine the effectiveness of promotional mix elements in the telecommunication Sector of Nigeria. MTN, GLO AND AIRTEL, Lagos State form the population of the study.
DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS
This chapter presents the analysis of data derived through the questionnaire and key informant interview administered on the respondents in the study area. The analysis and interpretation were derived from the findings of the study. The data analysis depicts the simple frequency and percentage of the respondents as well as interpretation of the information gathered. A total of eighty (80) questionnaires were administered to respondents of which only seventy-seven (77) were returned and validated. This was due to irregular, incomplete and inappropriate responses to some questionnaire. For this study a total of 77 was validated for the analysis.
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
It is important to ascertain the effectiveness of Promotional Mix elements in the Telecommunication Sector of Nigeria. In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing an effectiveness of Promotional Mix elements in the Telecommunication Sector of Nigeria
This study was on effectiveness of Promotional Mix elements in the Telecommunication Sector of Nigeria. Five objectives were raised which included: To examine the extent to which advertising, sales promotion, public relations, personal selling, and direct marketing influence the buying behavior of customers in the telecommunication sector of Nigeria, to determine the most effective promotional mix elements for telecommunication companies to use in increasing sales and customer loyalty, to investigate the relationship between promotional mix elements and customer loyalty in the telecommunication sector of Nigeria, to identify the challenges that telecommunication companies face in implementing effective promotional mix strategies in Nigeria and to provide recommendations on how telecommunication companies can improve their promotional mix strategies to gain a competitive advantage and increase customer loyalty. A total of 77 responses were received and validated from the enrolled participants where all respondents were drawn from staff of MTN, GLO AND AIRTEL in Lagos state. Hypothesis was tested using Chi-Square statistical tool (SPSS).
In conclusion, the promotional mix elements have been found to be effective in the telecommunication sector of Nigeria. The study has shown that advertising, personal selling, sales promotion, public relations, and direct marketing are all essential tools that can be used to effectively promote telecommunication services in Nigeria. The telecommunication sector in Nigeria is highly competitive, and companies that effectively use these promotional mix elements are more likely to succeed.
Advertising has been found to be a highly effective tool in creating brand awareness and generating interest in telecommunication services. Personal selling and direct marketing have been found to be effective in building relationships with customers and increasing sales. Sales promotions have been found to be useful in encouraging customers to switch to a particular service provider, while public relations have been found to be effective in building a positive image of a company in the minds of consumers.
Overall, the study has shown that the effective use of the promotional mix elements can lead to increased customer acquisition and retention, as well as increased sales and revenue. Therefore, telecommunication companies in Nigeria should invest in promoting their services through the various promotional mix elements to remain competitive in the market.
Telecommunication companies in Nigeria should allocate appropriate resources to each promotional mix element, based on their objectives and target audience.
Companies should regularly evaluate and adjust their promotional mix strategies based on the changing market conditions and customer preferences.
Companies should explore innovative and creative ways to use the promotional mix elements to differentiate themselves from their competitors.
Companies should consider the use of social media platforms to promote their services, as social media is becoming an increasingly popular channel for communication and engagement with customers.
Companies should prioritize building positive relationships with their customers through personal selling, direct marketing, and public relations, as this can lead to increased customer loyalty and retention.
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