Strategy, according to the Wikipedia could be defined in several ways. Literately, a strategy is a plan of action or policy designed to achieve a major or overall aim. It could also be seen or defined as the art of planning and directing overall operations and movements in a particular setting.

Marketing is referred to as a process which involves the identification, as well as the satisfaction of the needs and wants of consumers, through the exchange process, while marketing management is a business discipline which is focused on the practical application of marketing techniques and the overall management of a firm’s marketing resources and activities. Rapidly emerging forces of globalization have led firms to market beyond the borders of their home countries, making international marketing highly significant and an integral part of a firms marketing strategy.
Marketing managers are often responsible for influencing the level, timing and composition of customer demand accepted definition of the term. In part, this is because the role of a marketing manager can vary significantly, based on a business size, corporate culture, and industry context.
            For example in a large consumer products company, the marketing manager may act as the overall general manager of his or her assigned product. To create an effective, cost –efficient marketing management strategy, firms must posses a detailed objective understanding of their own business and the market in which they operate in analyzing these issues, the discipline of marketing management often overlaps with the related discipline of strategic planning.
            Having gotten a fore knowledge of the key concepts of strategy and marketing management in the introductory part, we now move further to examine what role or roles are played by strategy in marketing management.
1.         Framework for Operational Planning
            Strategies provide the framework for plans by channeling operating decisions and often pre-deciding them. If strategies are developed carefully and understood properly by managers, they provide more consistent framework for operational planning. If this consistency exists and applied, there would be deployment of organizational resources in those areas where they find better use.
Strategies define the business area both in terms of customers and geographical area served. Better the definition of these areas, better will be the deployment of resources. For example, if an organization has set that it will introduce new product in the market, it will allocate more resources to research and development activities, which is reflected in budget preparation.
2.         Clarity in Direction of Activities
            Strategies focus on direction of activities by specifying what activities are to be undertaken for achieving organizational objectives. They make the organizational objectives more clear and specific. For example, a business organization may define its objectives as profit earning or a non-business organization and may define its objectives as social objective. But these definition are for broad and even vague for putting them into operation. They are better spelled by strategies which focus on operational objectives and make them more practical. For example, strategies will provide how profit objective can be sharply defined in terms of how much profits is to be earned and what resources of how much profit is to be earned and what resources will be required for that. When objectives are spelled out in these terms, they provide clear definition to persons in the organization responsible for implementing various courses of action. Most people perform better if they know clearly what they are expected to do and where their organization is going.
Putting to view the Dangote sugar company, strategies that are already laid down helps in the smooth running of activities in the organization. Clearly stating each staff and department responsibilities and activities, in order to bring about efficiency and effectiveness.
3.         Increased Organizational Effectiveness
            Strategies ensure organizational effectiveness in several ways. The concept of effectiveness is that the organization is able to achieve its objectives within the given resources. Thus, for effectiveness, it is not only necessary that resources are put to the best of their efficiency but also that they are put in a way which ensures their maximum contribution to organizational objectives. In fact, taking strategies management, which states the objectives of the organization in the context of given resources can do this. Therefore, each resources of the organization has a specific use at a particular time. Thus, strategies ensure that resources are put in action in a way in which these have been specified. For instance, the accurate measurement of the resources needed in the manufacture of a specified number of bags of sugar over a stated period of time. When all this is put in place, the organization achieve effectiveness.
4.         Personnel Satisfaction
            Strategies contribute towards organization effectiveness by providing satisfaction to the personnel/staff of the organization. In organizations where formal strategic management process is followed, people are more satisfied by prescription of their roles, thereby reducing conflict and role ambiguity. If the decision are systemized in the organization, everyone knows how to proceed, how to contribute towards organizational objectives, where the information may be available, who can make decisions, and so on. Such clarity of issues will bring effectiveness at the individual level and consequently at organizational level. Strategies provide all these things in the organization through which everything is made crystal clear.
            Strategy entails laid down techniques and procedures implemented in order to have an edge over competitors in a competitive environment.
The Dangote Sugar Refinery make over 8 million naira on a weekly basis on the manufacture and sale of bags of granulated sugar. Such level of efficiency and effectiveness can only be achieved through proper strategy, planning as well as implementation. So many companies and business outlets are swept under the carpet and put away from business as a result of poor strategy implementation.
Looking into the role of strategy, Ross and Kami have suggested that “without a strategy, the organization is like a ship without a rudder, going around in circles”. It is tramp; it has no place to go. “they ascribe most business failure to lack of strategy, or lack of implementation of a reasonably good strategy. They conclude from their study that without appropriate strategy effectively implemented, failure is a just matter of time.
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