Read the passage carefully and answer the questions given below: Every market activity is an investment in time, energy and money.

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Read the passage carefully and answer the questions given below:
Every market activity is an investment in time, energy and money. Few companies would spend a large sum of money on, say, a purchase of capital equipment without a full investigation into why it is needed, the choices available, and the expected return on what has been spent. Yet every year the vast majority of companies invest a large amount of money in marketing actions without knowing what their financial worth to the company or likely return will be. By introducing the discipline arising from market planning, a company should be able to ensure that the costs of marketing planning show a reasonable return and are calculated in the same way as all other business investments. Many managers believe that the costs of marketing form an additional expense that has to be accepted in order to sell their goods. Whilst it is true that many companies use certain tools of marketing for this purpose, it is also true that the most successful companies accept marketing as an essential part of the company’s total commercial operation, for it is an essential cost in the same way as production or finance. Companies often avoid planning marketing procedures in detail because of the effort needed to express their forward policy in a written form. Managers commonly consider that their time is too valuable to spend on anything other than urgent operational problems. In fact, the manager who spends his time on dealing with current administrative detail is almost certain to have ignored proper planning in the past. For, if properly prepared, the marketing plan will contain sufficient details of the company’s policy and operational strategy for the work to be done by an assistant. As the many alternative courses of action are programmed, the assistant takes any action or decisions which are appropriate. Only unusual situations need be dealt with by the manager. The first step in preparing a marketing plan is that of producing the information necessary for decision making. Usually, a company will have within its own administration and control system the raw material necessary for the plan’s 9 foundations. In addition, there is plenty of published information which is made available by government departments, institutions and the press. Marketing research is yet to be fully exploited by the majority of companies. It has so far only been used by companies that have recognized that their existing information sources are inadequate. Because of the scale of operations that now confronts the typical businessman, it is essential that investment decisions are based upon relevant information, so reducing the business risk. For a marketing-oriented activity to produce lasting results, the entire operation has to be systematically planned. By producing basic information in written form and establishing aims for the future, the company is creating standards against which actual performance can be measured. Documentation of detailed policy actions then provides the basis for controlling the company’s operation. Future trends may be predicted through the investigation of all factors likely to influence company results. A good marketing plan is therefore essential to a company’s successful development, but so is an effective marketing manager. He must be capable of identifying the parameters for market research and interpreting the data produced so that he can quantify the existing and potential needs of customers. Someone with an eye for style in packaging and product promotion is also a valuable asset. In an ideal world, the manager would possess all these abilities; however, they may be useless if not combined with the real love of and natural flair for the job which allow him sometimes to ignore the rational evidence and act instinctively

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