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As previously mentioned the important trend is rapidlychanging technology, especially in electronics and tele communications over thelast few decades.
One need only pick up any newspaper or view any televisionprogram in nearly any part of the world to see the impact of communicationstechnology. The Internet, of course, is the most important technological eventimpacting business marketing. But the advent of the smartphone, faster andlower cost computers, and the continuing reduction in the size of components ofevery kind, are all critical technological advances. These technologies improvecommunications and management within the firm and with suppliers anddistributors. They also allow for higher quality products and customization tomeet customer needs.
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Improved technology not only makes products better andadds to visibility, but it also provides many more vehicles for contacting thecustomer. Only a decade ago, tried and true methods of marketing communicationslike trade shows, catalogues, trade magazine advertising, and mailings wereadequate to reach potential customers and provide leads to the sales force.Now, a good website is an absolutely essential weapon in the marketingcommunications arsenal. Unfortunately, the advent of the website has notreduced the need for the other forms of communications.
In fact, one of the ironiesof the Internet is that other forms of communications are required to drivecustomers to the firm’s website. In other words, a website alone is not enough.One of this book’s authors carried out research with architects which showedthat they expect up-to-date and user-friendly websites while continuing to wantprinted catalogues and the ability to get specific advice from a manufacturer eitherthrough a local sales rep or factory technical support on the other end of atoll-free telephone line. The Internet does not remove the human element ofbusiness either – one of the most important factors for buyers in e-business isthat of the reliability of the supplier’s employees (Lai and Yang, 2009). Awell-designed website also helps a firm most effectively serve a large numberof smaller volume customers. If these customers can be convinced to orderdirect from the website, the sales force can be focused on the largest volumeopportunities. One intriguing new trend is that of webcasting, sometimes calledpush technology.
Webcasting has been defined as a way of updating news or otherselected information on a computer user’s desktop through periodic transmissionover the Internet (WhatIs.com). However, the Hyper Dictionary (2003), definesweb casting as “real-time transmission of encoded video under the control