Marketing Audit researches the way an organization plans and manages its marketing efforts. It’s an in-depth survey, enabling organisations to measure their past and current performances in a competitive environment.
Marketing audit is an imperative to marketing strategy creation. A structured approach to the collection and analysis of information and data about a company’s past and current operations, its performances (both inside and outside) and competition and what is needed in future, audits help create the building blocks for future marketing plans.
The diverse and constantly changing business scenarios make it necessary to audits at a regular interval. The marketing audit is usually performed at the start of planning stage, and at the end of implementation stage to evaluate the current and future marketing strategies and evaluate the success of the measures. The frequency and the methodologies for an effective marketing audit can vary from the size of an organization to the industry that it caters. It also helps in assessing a company’s business readiness compared to competitors in terms of product value, sales, cost, market shares etc. However, many companies are still to realise the importance of a marketing audit in decision-making process.
To get the best results, marketing audit should be systematic, comprehensive, independent and periodic. Marketing audit should be carried out periodically, covers all the major marketing issues not the only obvious ones, conducted by team with enough independence to do an in-depth analysis, and involves sequential steps covering both internal and external environment.
Another crucial factor for success, is the team created to perform the marketing audit. Preferably, the auditor should be an independent consultant and if possible not from the same marketing unit where the audit is being performed, otherwise it might lead to biased results. In addition, the auditors should be experienced and knowledgeable enough to foresee the opportunities, and discover the issues and risks.
Establishing an effective marketing approach, and updating as and when required can lead to the formulation of an effective marketing audit. It should not look and criticise the failures, but review and analyse their measures, practices and objectives which are successful which in turn help the organization make decisive decisions and create effective marketing strategies that would be in sync with the fast-changing market.