- the output of a firm is both TANGIBLE AND INTANGIBLE.
Understanding these aspects, shapes future activities of the firm. Finally, it is the output which is responsible for the financial picture of the organization.
Marketing deals with the 4 Ps: product, price, promotion, and placement (distribution and availability). Marketing also deals with the communication mix which include: sales promotion (bonus offers), personal selling (MR efforts), packaging, advertisements (eg., in medical journals), and publicity (activities which result in word-of-mouth particularly in target doctor or target pharmacist circles).
Marketing includes the physical evidence, process and people too. Finally, marketing helps increase throughput, market penetration, facilitates sales, stimulates and catalyzes the exchange process, helps retain current customer base and nets in more customers through conversion of prospects into customers and strengthens brand equity.
There are many other dimensions of marketing: such as product positioning, developing an emotional bond of trust, modifying the lifestyle or prescribing behaviour or even the therapeutic style or approach and ensuring improved quality of life for society and patients (ie., reducing morbidity and mortality).
Operations is an all encompassing function that envisages creation of value added outputs that satisfy all stakeholders including customers. Operations includes sourcing (of raw materials, outsourcing or own manufacturing), processing, marketing and other operations in providing the output. It is a wider perspective of things.
Operational focus varies from firm to firm. For instance, Mankind did not devote energies to set up a US FDA manufacturing facility (as was the trend), its operations was to focus on improving market share and brand sales. The operational focus makes the difference.
Many a times, firms do not know what output they are actually creating or what they are supposed to create (as per customer requirements) - they are going by the established LEGACY OPERATIONS. For eg., a firm like say, Indoco or Franco Indian has its legacy - and operations are embedded in this legacy. Now are the operations in tune with the contemporary market reality? Or are the operations having some unidentified strengths (parts that are not exploited) that can help bring in more revenues? If the analysis is done not just from the marketing angle also from the operational perspective, this will provide more insights to firms.
Akums is an interesting business plan, this firm offers latest formulations on contract manufacturing basis. The output of Akums is about helping pharma marketers create better outputs - Akums is aiming at this synergy and this is Akum's operational focus.
There are several ways to introduce a new product. The most common way, is to look into the IMS market reports (for promising markets, where there are market gaps) and see the 'best-fit new me-too product'. This product should fit into the company operations or company marketing coverage and style. The idea is to introduce the new brand hoping to hit a gold mine in the marketplace.
This approach does work and has worked - but one should analyze if the new brand is the best fit from the marketing angle or operations angle of the firm? This is the call that one has to take through analysis.
Let us say, Sun Pharma is strong in the OBG and neuropsychiatry segments - and presume they have two options: (a) let us say Sun Pharma has a product for the mass GP market and (b) the have one more product for the critical care segment (which is also a specialty market).
Which product will Sun Pharma invest in (in the current market scenario)?
Mr. Mallya is a good marketer but operations probably, was not his tastiest cup of tea, now this is just loud thinking - and hindsight wisdom (which is the easiest form of wisdom!).
What about Kingfisher? The answer: a great marketing success, but A WORRISOME OPERATIONAL DISASTER.