Historically, when a major new type of machine has been built, men have at first been too apprehensive about what it would do to them immediately. Then, after it has been around for a while and hasn?t put them out of work, they have become too complacent about what its longer term effects would be. Today, many marketers behave as though they were in the stage of overcomplacency about the long-range impact of the computer. They seem sure it is not a near-term threat, so they give it mostly mundane chores and, in a sense, assume it will always be simply a routine data processor. They don?t often give it the more sophisticated, more profitable work in management science.
This book is aimed at reducing that complacency, now and in the future, by making it relatively easy for the practicing marketer and the marketing student to understand what is possible. This is, therefore, both a textbook and a business book. Its coauthors, a university professor and a marketing research manager, bring two complementary viewpoints to bear on the problem. As a result, the book breaks with textbook tradition in two ways. First, its English is rather informal. Second, it goes beyond the explanation of various computational techniques for marketers into the discussion of what can be done to solve certain human relation problems which today severely limit the use of computers. Until now, many universities have felt they should teach methodology and let the graduates or their employers figure out how to get marketers and computer people talking to one another, working together toward a common goal: the application of good methods to important problems. Since few companies seem to have achieved such harmony, this book is supposed to help them do so while at the same time making it easier for universities to forearm their students for the communication problems they will soon face.