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How do small business managers make strategic marketing decisions? A model of process

Graham Jocumsen (Department of Marketing and Tourism, University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba, Australia)

European Journal of Marketing

ISSN: 0309-0566

Article publication date: 1 May 2004



Argues that a deeper understanding of the current strategic marketing decision‐making processes in small businesses is necessary to raise the acceptance rates of interventions to improve the quality of strategic marketing decisions and consequently firm performance. Despite extensive interventionist efforts focussed primarily upon application of theory derived from large organisation studies, the small business sector continues to be plagued by high failure rates and poor performance levels. In this study, a comprehensive literature review and a series of six in‐depth interviews are used to develop a theoretical research framework for the strategic marketing decision‐making process in small business. Second, 46 strategic marketing decisions drawn from 32 small businesses are examined within the context of the research framework and, finally, a model of strategic marketing decision‐making process in small business is proposed. The core of the model is a series of three loosely defined steps or tasks (“information gathering/research”, “financial analyses and assessments” and “”internal matters”), which are conducted non‐sequentially but preceded by “decision initiation” and followed by “final commitment”. Furthermore, the key “methods” used in carrying out these steps or tasks are identified and classified into learned competencies, inherent competencies, internal networks and external networks.



Jocumsen, G. (2004), "How do small business managers make strategic marketing decisions? A model of process", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 38 No. 5/6, pp. 659-674.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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