What are the main problems facing researchers investigating the use of marketing in SMEs? How might these problems be overcome?
Marketing is important for a company to promote its product and services to the target market. According to the reports, around 99.9% of business in the UK are SME with employment of 16 million people. This growth of SME has been a witness with recent developments of crowd-funding, venture capitalists or other private medium sized finance companies. Nepalese government have also announced several initiatives to promote SMEs, which include opening an Incubator Centre and opening “Yuva Sworojgar Kosh” among the other in the list. However, these SMEs aren’t devoid of problems. According to research on SMEs, they found different problems pertinent to SMEs.
Firstly, most of the SMEs, around 40.2%, have problems of sales and marketing. There can be different problems related to sales and marketing. Either the company may lack experts to design or run a good marketing campaign or else the company might lack financial resources to employ specialists or afford marketing campaign, on top of it, having no good information system may also limit the use of data to design a good advertisement. With my hands-on experience of an internship in an SME, I found a chocolate company, having resources to promote the product however it lacked captivating marketing campaigns. While for IT, they had technical expertise and wanted to sell product giving technical knowledge rather than simplifying, marketing and selling according to customer’s understanding.
The second problem faced by 15.3% of the SME was related to human resource management. According to M. Srimannarayana, effective management of human resource is key for survival of small ventures and gain a wide attention. However, most of the SMEs are facing problems because of high employee turnover. On the other hand, people are ready to work for big and established companies than in SMEs for the same salary. At Eton, they were facing problems as the employees were leaving the office, who were trained, while they had to hire new employees and again start with training them on the same job post.
On third, about 14.3% people suffer from general management related problems. This might be limited cash, limited resources or the structure of the organization. Companies and their owners must work as a team for better performance or else the company might face difficulties in future. Similarly, the company might also face problems related to production and operations management. According to a report, the industrial data of production isn’t available in Asian countries, which make the companies difficult to estimate right production units or manage the operations of the plants. So, these are the main problems related to SMEs.