Week 9 - Assignment - MKT 574 – Article Example

XXXX XXXX Challenging s 22/10/11 Challenging s s may be seen as presenting challenges for the firm in a range of different ways, this essay will consider an number of articles from the business, trade and academic press which show the challenging nature of customers in various guises.
The first two items to be considered are the ethical consumer report published by the Co-op Bank and a related ethical consumer publication “deeper luxury” published in connection with the WWF (Co-op Bank 1-20, Bendall and Kleanthous 1-44). Both of these articles highlight the fact that challenges presented by customers today go beyond those of customer service, here the articles indicate the need for firm to act in an ethical way with responsible souring of input goods and ensuing ethical practises with regards to labour rights. The articles both elude to the possible consequences of a company failing its customers in this regard, largely through the possibility of lost sales and boycotts on the behalf of the consumer.
The second set of articles to be considered demonstrate the challenging nature of business to business customers (Talking Retail, Creevey). Here examples are cited in the UK food retail sector of where large customers have name the environment for small food producers particularly challenging by taking advantage of the significant power they hold through the process of bulk buying. Such practises are used in reality to drive down prices and negotiate what may be thought of as punitive commercial terms.
As such, one can see that customers can present a variety of challenges to the firm ranging from price based pressures to the need to make changes to ways in which products are manufactures and produced in the first place.
Bibliography
Bendell, J, Kleanthous, A. 2007. Deeper Luxury. World Wide Fund. Available online at: http://www.wwf.org.uk/deeperluxury/report_download.html [Accessed on 14/07/09]
Co-op Bank. The ethical consumerism report 2007. The Co-operative bank. 2007 Available online at: http://www.co-operativebank.co.uk/images/pdf/ethical_consumer_report_2007.pdf [Accessed on 12/07/09].
Creevy, J. Morrisons seeks supplier support. Retail Week. 2009 Nov 2nd Available online at: http://www.retail-week.com/retail-sectors/food/morrisons-seeks-supplier-support/5007650.article
Talking retail. Smaller suppliers feel supermarket squeeze. 2008 May 22nd Available online at: http://www.talkingretail.com/blogs/9741-smaller-suppliers-feel-supermarket-squeeze.html [Accessed on 06/11/09].