BCOE 141 Solved Assignment 2022 – 23 [IGNOU BCOMG]

BCOE 141 Solved Assignment 2022 – 23

IGNOU BCOMG – 5TH Semester

COURSE CODE: BCOE 141 Principles of Marketing



Maximum Marks: 100


(This section contains long answer questions of 10 marks each)

In this post you will get BCOE 141 Solved Assignment 2022 – 23. Subject Title is Principles of Marketing which is an important subject of IGNOU BCOMG 5th Semester. All the IGNOU BCOMG solved assignment are free. Visit our blog regularly for more solved assignment.

bcoe 141 solved assignment

1) How is the distinction between buyer and user meaningful to a marketer?   (10)

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2) Briefly explain the factors that affect the basic price of product or service?   (10)

Ans: Factors Affecting Pricing of products or services: Factors affecting pricing may be categorized into two categories- internal factors and external factors. In each of these categories some may be economic factors and some may be psychological factors. Some factors may be quantitative and some others may be qualitative. Some of the important factors affecting pricing are given below:

A. Internal Factors:

As regards pricing, the firm has certain objectives -long term as well as immediate. For example, the firm has certain costs of manufacturing and marketing; and it seeks to recover these costs through the price and thereby earning a profit. In respect of all the products, the firm may have a basic philosophy on pricing. The pricing decisions of the firm have to be consistent with this philosophy. Pricing also has to be consistent with the overall objectives of the firm.

These objectives could be achieving market share, short term or long term profit. The firm may be interested in seeking a particular public image through its pricing policies. All these constitute the internal factors that influence pricing. From the above, it appears that pricing is influenced by objectives and marketing strategy of the enterprise, pricing philosophy, pricing objectives and policy. More specifically, the internal factors are: 

1. Corporate and marketing objectives of the firm: All pricing objectives emanate from the corporate and marketing objectives of the firm. A business firm will have a number of objectives in the area of pricing. Some of these objectives are long-term, while others are short-term. Profit is one of the major objectives in pricing. Firms may not be interested in profit maximization as such, they may be more interested in long term survival and growth.

2. The image sought by the firm through pricing: If a firm offers high quality goods at high prices, the firm will develop a premium image. 

3. The characteristics of the product: Sophisticated, complex and new to the world products normally carry high prices. Products having more features carry higher prices.

4. Price elasticity of demand of the product: If price increases, demand decreases and if price decreases demand increases. Marketers may decide on pricing based on ‘what the traffic can bear’. The marketer takes the maximum price which the customers are willing to pay for the product under the given circumstances.

5. The stage of the product on the product life cycle: When a product is introduced for the first time it carries a higher price. Gradually with increasing consumer acceptance and competition price decreases. 

6. Use pattern and turn around rate of the product: Price of newspaper and magazines may be different for the immediacy factor, permanence and the pass along readership. Newspapers are having a short life, while magazines enjoy a pass along readership.

B. External Factors:

In addition to the internal factors mentioned above, any business firm has to encounter a set of external factors while formulating its pricing decisions. An enterprise exists in an environment and is influenced by environmental factors. The external factors are:

1. Market characteristics: Some markets are having very stiff competition and some are having less. The number of players in a market could be more or less. Market leadership factors also may be different. Different characteristics of the market have a bearing on price.

2. Buyer behaviour in respect of the given product: Value conscious buyers are likely to be interested in low prices. Image conscious buyers may be more attracted by product image rather than low price of the product.

3. Bargaining power of major customers: In industrial buying situations major buyers have a bargaining power. They are in a better position to negotiate prices.

4. Bargaining power of major suppliers: Similar is the case with major suppliers. They are in a better position to supply bulk quantities. They are also in a better position to negotiate terms.

5. Competitors’ pricing policy: Firm’s decision to set a price is heavily influenced by the price set by the competitors. In case of highly unique product having a niche market, a firm can have its own price. In most of the cases, competitive reactions to the price set by the firm have to be seriously studied for future programmes.

3) Discuss the basic purpose of changing the package?          (10)

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4) What are the functions of channels of distribution. Explain them.      (10)

Ans: Channels of Distribution

One of the important problems of marketing is the distribution of goods & services to the right place, person & the right time. Manufacturers often find it difficult to decide about the effective distribution system. The channel of distributions refers to the group of intermediaries, which perform the distribution functions. A channel of distribution is an organised net-work or a system of agencies and institutions which, in combination, perform all the activities required to link producers with users and users with producers to accomplish the marketing task.

According to Philip Kotler, “The distribution is the set of all firms & individuals that assist in the transferring the little of goods & services as they move from producers to customers.”

According to Richard Buskirk, “Channel of distribution is that system of financial organization by which a producer sends his products to the hands of consumers.”

According to Cundiff and Still, “Channels of distribution are those marketing nets through which the producer flows the products toward the market.”

Functions (Role) of the Channels of Distribution

The following are the main function of the channel of distribution:

(1) Extending Suggestions Regarding Price-Determination: The middlemen are in the direct contact of the consumers. Therefore, they possess the knowledge that on what price may the consumer accepts the product. Thus, the channel of distribution extends necessary advice to the producers in the price-determination.

(2) Regularizing the Decisions: The channel of distribution regularizes the decisions and the transactions, resulting in the lowering of the costs. If the products are sold off to some such store which has many branches in the city, the producer then doesn’t need going to various branches frequently or repeatedly. The main cause of the same is that if the product seems suitable for the store, it will itself send the purchase order to the manufacturer and in this way, with only the limited efforts, it will become possible to sell the products in bulk quantities.

(3) Managing the Finance: We find that the agents generally send some advance money along with the order. Very often the product is supplied to the agents through the bank so that the company gets the documents discounted from the bank. Thus the finance is arranged. Thus it-is also the function of the agents to arrange the finance.

(4) Performing the Promotion Activities: By the middlemen, particularly by the retailers, the advertisements, individual sales, and the sales promotion activities are performed. Very often the middlemen themselves plan and implement the promotion activities and sometimes the manufacturers to extend their help in such work. Really, the result or the outcome of the sales, by the producer, very much depends upon the promotion activities undertaken by the middlemen.

(5) Serving the Consumers: Due to the middlemen only, the consumers get their required products. Only in accordance with the needs of the consumers, the retailers arrange to purchase the products from the wholesalers and the manufacturers.

(6) Minimizing the Total Transactions: If there were no middlemen, the producer would have been required to sell the product directly to the consumers which would have result into more of expenditure and trouble. Really speaking, due to the existence of the middlemen only, the number of total transactions is reduced which also reduces the costs of distribution.

5) How is a retailer different from a wholesaler?             (10)

Ans: Retailer and Wholesaler: Meaning and difference

Wholesale trader is one who sales to other middlemen, institutions and individuals a fairly large quantity. According to American Management Association, wholesalers sells to retailers or other merchants and/or individual, institutional and casual users but they do not sell in significant amounts to ultimate consumers. Wholesale trade is to do with marketing and selling merchandise to retailers, wholesalers or to individuals commercial and professional or other institutional contrast to household consumers, to individuals for personal use.

Retailer is one whose business is to sell to consumers a wide variety of goods that are assembled at his premises as per the needs of final users. The term retail signifies sale for final consumption rather than for resale or for further processing. A retailer is the last link between the final user and the wholesaler or the manufacturers.

In the words of Professor William Staton,” Retailing includes all activities directly related to the sale of goods and services to the ultimate consumers for personal or non-business use”

Thus, retailer is that merchant intermediary who buys goods from preceding channel members in small assorted lots and sells them in the lot requirements of final users.

Difference between Wholesaler and Retailer:

1. Link: Wholesaler servers as a link between producers and retailers on the other hand, a retailer provides a link between wholesalers and consumers. Wholesaler is the first link, whereas retailer is the last link in the chain of distribution of goods.

2. Scale of operations: A wholesaler carries on business on a large scale and requires huge capital. A retailer, on the other hand, deals generally on a small scale and capital invested in retail trade in relatively small.

3. Range of goods: A wholesaler generally deals in one commodity. But a retailer deals in a large variety of goods and caters to the diverse needs of his customers.

4. Dealings: A wholesaler generally sells goods to retailers on credit. But a retailer usually sells goods to consumers on cash basis.

5. Location: A wholesaler can have a go down in a corner of the city and can supply goods there from. But the shop of a retailer needs to be located in the heart of the city to attract a large numbers of customers.

6. Profit margin: A wholesaler has not to spend money on shop decoration etc., and has a large volume of sales. Therefore, he charges a smaller margin of profit than that charged by the retailer.

7. Display of goods: A wholesaler need not display the goods. But a retailer has to display goods and decorate his shop in order to attract customers.

8. Purpose of selling: A wholesaler sells goods for resale. On the other hand, a retailer sells goods for ultimate consumption or use.

Section – B

6) List out the tools used in trade promotion.    (6)

Ans: Trade promotion refers to short term use of incentives or other promotional activities that stimulate the customer to buy the product. Sales promotion techniques are very useful because they bring short and immediate effect on sale.

Trade promotion techniques:

(a) Rebate: Sometimes, the product is made available at special prices less than the original prices for a limited period of time, e.g., recently Coke and Pepsi announced special price of their 500 ml bottles.

(b) Product Combination: Product combination is the bonus items given free with the purchase of a product. For e.g. A milk shakers along with Nescafe, or mugs with Bourn vita or a diary along with a packet of chips. They are effective in getting consumers to try a new product.

(c ) Lucky Draw: A firm of purchased of a fixed amount gives a coupon to a customer which entitles them for a lucky draw, e.g., Bikanerwala restaurant in particular season gives lucky draw coupon on purchase of Rs. 200 or more to its customers which entitles them to win exciting prizes like car etc.

(d) Contests: In these, consumer’ are required to participate in some competitive event involving application of skills or luck and winners are given some rewards. For instance, Golden Harvest, maker of premium bread usually has children drawing competition.

(e) Discounts: These are like price promotion in which certain percentage of price is reduced as discount from the list price, e.g., most of the retailers of garment like Snow White and Shopper’s Stop offer their product at generous discount during a limited period at the end of the season.

7) What are the factors that determine the choice of media?     (6)

Ans: Selection of a suitable medium for advertising is really a complex problem to the advertiser. There are a number of kinds and classes of media in the modern advertising. Hence, the advertising media selection means not only the choice of the right classes of media out also the individual medium within the class or classes.

Besides there is no single medium that is best suited for all advertisers. In reality, a medium which is best suited for one may be almost useless for another. The medium once employed for advertising a particular product itself may be found unsuited subsequently. Therefore, the right choice of a medium calls for a careful analysis. If the medium is unsuited the whole amount of money spent on the advertising campaign shall turn to be a waste. The advertiser, therefore, while selecting the media, should consider the following factors:

1) Class of the audience: Firstly, the advertiser must note the class of the audience to be influenced by the medium. The audience can be classified into different groups by their social status, age, income, educational standard, religion, cultural interests. They may also be divided into men and women.

2) Extent of coverage: Secondly, the advertiser must consider the number of audience to be covered by the medium. Every media has a general as well as an effective circulation. The general circulation is made up of the total number of people who read or subscribe to the media. The effective circulation is the number prospective customers who read it and the number of those who influences sales, though they may not buy for themselves. Effective circulation must be considered while estimating the number of people to be covered. The extent to which the medium reaches the same audience as that covered by some other media i.e., the percentage of over-lapping must also be taken into account.

3) Nature of the product: Nature of the product itself is a principal factor governing the selection of the medium. Products can be classified into various kinds – consumer‘s products and manufacturer‘s products etc.

4) Nature of the competition: The nature of the competition has greater influence of the selection of the media. If the competition is stiff utmost care is needed in the selection of medium and a larger advertising budget is also required. In many cases, where the advertising copy is similar or the choice of the media solely determines the effectiveness of the campaign as compared with that of the other competitors.

5) Reputation of the medium: Newspapers and magazines can offer a beautiful illustration for the reputation of the media. There are a few newspapers and magazines which have international reputation with a high readership. Advertisements in such magazines and newspapers are generally recognized and believed as true. Such advertisements also add prestige to the product.

6) Cost of the media: Cost of the medium in most cases, is an important factor in the selection of the medium. Advertisements in certain media are expensive, for instance, TV and Radio advertisements. Magazines and newspaper advertisements are generally considered as less expensive. Yet, certain magazines and newspapers, having larger circulation and high reputation charge higher rates. The rates also differ depending upon the space occupied and the preferential positions. The first page of a newspaper is rarely missed by the reader. Hence they have more attention value, than the advertisements presented anywhere inside the newspaper.

8) What do you mean by services? Discuss its characteristics.      (6)

Ans: Meaning of Services: According to the economic point of view a service is an intangible commodity. That is, services are an example of intangible economic goods. A service is any activity or benefit that one party can offer to another that is essentially intangible and does not result in the ownership of anything. Its production may or may not be tied to physical product.

According to American Marketing Association services are defined as “activities, benefits or satisfactions which are offered for sale or provided in connection with the sale of goods.”

According to Philip Kotler and Bloom services is defined as “any activity or benefit that one party can offer to another that is essentially intangible and does not result in the ownership of anything. Its production may or may not be tied to a physical product.”

Characteristics of services (Bases of Classification of Services)

Services have mainly five unique characteristics compared to goods. In the marketing point of view these characteristics are very important, because these characteristics create several unique marketing problems.

1. Intangibility

2. Inseparability

3. Heterogeneity

4. Perishability and

5. Ownership

1. Intangibility: Intangibility is the primary characteristics that distinguish services from goods, i.e. the quality of not being able to touch, taste, see, smell or hear. Services such as education, insurance, medical etc. cannot be physically possessed like tangible goods. Intangible services are more difficult for consumers to evaluate than tangible goods. When you buy bath soap, you can see it, feel it, touch it, smell it and use it to check its effectiveness in cleaning your body.

But if you pay fee for a course in an education institution, you are paying for the benefit of deriving knowledge and education which is delivered to you by teacher community. In contrast to the bath soap, where you can immediately check its benefits, there is no way in the case of teachers. Because teaching is an intangible service.

2. Inseparability: Another characteristic of services is the inseparability, or indivisible nature of production and consumption. In most cases, a service cannot be separated from a person or a firm providing it. A service is provided by a person who possesses a particular skill (singer), by using an equipment to handle a tangible product (dry cleaning) or by allowing to access t or use of physical infrastructure (hotel). A plumber has to be physically present to provide the service. Goods can be produced in the factory, stocked and sold when order is placed. But since service is inseparable, both production and consumption occurs simultaneously.

3. Heterogeneity: Most of the services are rendered by people, and people are not always consistent in their performance. This inconsistency or variation in performance is referred to as the heterogeneity of services. Performance may vary from one individual to another individual or from one organisation to another organisation or even performance of a person in day time may not be same in night time. In short the human element is very much involving in providing and rendering services and this makes standardization a very difficult task.

4. Perishability: Services cannot be stored and are perishable. Due to any reason, a few seats remain empty on a train, or a theatre cancels a particular live show of a drama, that particular service opportunity is lost forever. Restaurants are now charging for reservations which are not utilized. Charges may be made for missed appointments with consultants’ doctors and some education institutions levy the fee as students discontinue the course because of lapsing the seat.

5. Ownership: When you buy a product, you will become the owner of that product- be it a car, bus, bike, pen, computer or shirt. But in the case of service, you may pay for its use, not its ownership.

9) Define rural marketing and challenges faced by rural marketers.      (6)

Ans: Meaning and Definition of Rural Marketing

India is a land of diversity and about 70% of the population lives in villages. To a large extent, villages contribute towards the economic development of the nation through the production of food grains, vegetables, fruits etc. Export of these agricultural products generate capital and earnings from foreign exchange.There are approximately 600,000 big and small villages in India according to rural market researchers. 25% of villages account for 65% of the total rural population. So we can calculate 65% of 700 million populations by from only 150,000 villages – which becomes a huge potential of this market.

National Commission on Agriculture defines rural marketing as “a process which starts with a decision to produce a sale able farm commodity and it involves all the aspects of market structure or system, both functional and institutional, based on technical and economic considerations and includes pre and post-harvest operations, assembling, grading,storage, transportation and distribution.”

According to Thomsen, the study of rural marketing comprises of all the operations, and the agencies conducting them, involved in the movement of farm produced food, raw materials and their derivatives, such as textiles,from the farms to the final consumers, and the effects of such operations on producers,middlemen and consumers.

Problems of Indian Rural Markets

There are several problems that make it difficult to progress in the rural market.Marketers encounter a number of problems like dealing with physical distribution, logistics,proper and effective deployment of sales force and effective marketing communication when they enter rural markets. The major problems are listed below.

1. Standard of Living: The number of people below the poverty line is more in rural markets. Thus the market is also underdeveloped and marketing strategies have to be different from those used in urban marketing.

2. Low Literacy Levels: The low literacy levels in rural areas leads to a problem of communication. Print media has less utility compared to the other media of communication.

3. Low Per Capita Income: Agriculture is the main source of income and hence spending capacity depends upon the agriculture produce. Demand may not be stable or regular.

4. Transportation and Warehousing: Transportation is one of the biggest challenges in rural markets. As far as road transportation is concerned, about 50% of Indian villages are connected by roads. However,the rest of the rural markets do not even have a proper road linkage which makes physical distribution a tough task.

5. Ineffective Distribution Channels: The distribution chain is not very well organized and requires a large number of intermediaries, which in turn increases the cost and creates administrative problems. Due to lack of proper infrastructure, manufacturers are reluctant to open outlets in these areas.They are mainly dependent on dealers, who are not easily available for rural areas. This is a challenge to the marketers.

6. Many Languages and Diversity in Culture: Factors like cultural congruence, different behavior and language of the respective areas make it difficult to handle the customers. Traits among the sales force are required to match the various requirements of these specific areas.

10) What is Green Marketing? Discuss its importance.      (6)

Ans: Green-Marketing: “Green” or “eco” marketing is the order of the day. Imbalance in the eco-systems or environment is going to affect as flora and fauna are badly affected. Take the example of razing trees in the forests to make more area for cultivation and accommodation has resulted in reduced rain fall; global warming has resulted and if care is not taken of environment in which we are living, a day will come where more and natural calamities will be caused finally digging our own graves. That is why, every effort is made to protect endangered species of flora and fauna and eco-systems.

If we do not care for protecting the forests, there would be no rains, no rains mean no water; even the ground water is in short so much so that a litre of water might cost more than a litre of petrol. These man-made problems of environmental imbalances are having impact on every human activity and marketing is no exception. Whatever product we are using, be it a car, watch, cup, medicine, pesticides, fertilizers are to be environment friendly which are bio-degradable. Thus, paper bags are fast replacing the plastic carry bags; less pollutant cars and three and two-wheelers are produced and marketed.

Section – C

11) Write short notes on:        (10)

(a) Digital Marketing.

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(b) Merchant Agents.

Ans: Merchant agents are intermediaries who act on behalf of the seller and engage in the sale and distribution of products or services. They work on a commission basis, and their main objective is to increase the sales of the products or services they represent. Merchant agents can be individuals or organizations, and they can operate in a wide range of industries, from retail to finance.

Merchant agents are different from brokers or middlemen, as they take title to the goods they sell. This means that they are responsible for the payment of the goods and for the delivery of the goods to the buyer. They take the risk of holding the inventory and suffer losses if they are unable to sell the goods at the price they purchased them.

Merchant agents can perform a range of services, including sales, marketing, order processing, and customer service. They have a deep understanding of the market and the products they sell, and they can provide valuable insights and advice to their clients. They can also help their clients to expand their customer base and increase their sales by leveraging their network of contacts and their expertise in sales and marketing.

Merchant agents are often used by companies that want to expand their sales channels or enter new markets. They offer a cost-effective and efficient way to reach new customers and increase sales without incurring the fixed costs of setting up a new sales force or distribution network. Overall, merchant agents play a crucial role in the distribution and marketing of products and services, and their services can provide significant benefits to both sellers and buyers.

12) Distinguish between:       (10)

(a) Selective distribution and exclusive distribution.

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(b) Departmental store and Multiple shop.

Ans: Department Stores: These are large scale retail stores selling under one roof and one control a variety of goods divided into different departments, each of which specializes in an individual merchandise. A department store is a retailing business unit that handles a wide variety of shopping and specialty goods and is organized into separate departments for purposes of sales promotion, accounting control and store operation.

Multiple Shops:Multiple shops are networks of retail shops of a large merchandising organisation that consists of many branches in the country. All branches are under central ownership and control. Multiple Shops are similarly organised and people may find them without any difficulty.

Difference between Departmental stores and multiple shop





They are located at the centre or shopping areas of big cities

They are located at different areas of cities


Its purpose is to attract customers.

Its purpose is to approach customers.


Its investment is comparatively more because it maintains variety of goods.

It requires less investment.


They provide credit facilities.

They do not provide credit facilities.


Buying is decentralized and selling is centralized in case of departmental store.

Buying is centralized and selling is decentralized in case of multiple shops.


It is flexible.

It is not flexible.


Decoration is not uniform.

Uniformity of decoration for identification

Finally, you reached at the end of the post. Hope you are satisfied with BCOE 141 Solved Assignment 2022 – 23.  Visit official website of IGNOU to download IGNOU BCOM assignment papers.


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