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This article considers the supermarket manager’s problem of forecasting demand for a product as a function of the product’s attributes and of market control variables. To forecast sales on the stock keeping unit (SKU) level, a good model should account for product attributes, historical sales levels, and store specifics, and to control for marketing mix. One of the challenges here is that many variables which describe product, store, or promotion conditions are categorical with hundreds or thousands of levels in a single attribute. Identifying the right product attributes and incorporating them correctly into a prediction model is a very difficult statistical problem. This article proposes an analytical engine that combines techniques from statistical market response modeling, datamining, and combinatorial optimization to produce a small, efficient rule set that predicts sales volume levels. READ MORE
A study of the effect of word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing on member growth at an Internet social networking site and compare it with traditional marketing vehicles. WOM, along with traditional marketing, can then be linked to the number of new members subsequently joining the site (signups). Estimates show that word-of-mouth referrals have substantially longer carryover effects than traditional marketing actions. READ MORE
Investors reward brand equity, customer satisfaction, R&D, product quality and other intangibles as “intermediate metrics” that can be measured and shown to create shareholder value. READ MORE
More and more firms realize that some of their most valuable assets are the brand names associated with their products or services. Creating, maintaining, and enhancing the strength of those brands has become a key management imperative. One important advantage of having a strong brand is that it can facilitate acceptance of new products launched using that brand name, i.e., brand extensions. Because they reduce consumer risk and significantly lower the cost of introductory marketing programs, brand extensions have become the predominant new product strategy, and the last two decades have seen an explosion in the number of brand extensions. READ MORE