There are many uses for the sorts of internal records that are available in marketing information systems. In general, these records are meant to help a firm understand how its marketing processes are and are not working.
The whole purpose of a marketing information system is to help a firm market its products better. The system gathers large amounts of data and determines which of those data are most important and need to be conveyed to people who make decisions. These data help the decision makers understand how their marketing is working.
Let us look at an example to see how this works. One thing that a marketing information system would gather is records of sales invoices. These invoices could help a firm know a variety of things that are related to marketing. The invoices could tell the firm what amounts of what products are being sold to customers in various places. They could tell what size of firms are buying the products. They could tell which sales representatives are making the most sales. All of these pieces of information could be useful to decision makers.
Thus, internal records can be useful in a variety of ways. They can tell a firm many things about how its marketing is working.
First, let's define what is a MIS, or Marketing Information System.
The literal definition from Kotler (1988), author of the textbook Marketing Management: Analysis Planning and Control, a MIS is:
... a continuing and interacting structure of people, equipment, and procedures to gather, sort, analyze, evaluate, and distribute pertinent, timely and accurate information for use by marketing decision-makers to improve their marketing planning, implementation, and control.
In other words, and as the name implies, a MIS is a program in place that sums up all data on generated profits, demographics reached, products sold, equipment used, and processes followed during a marketing campaign. The purpose of having all of this information is to determine whether the marketing program in place is working and producing the desired effects.
The MIS, as stated previously, produces a myriad of different information, including data and, most importantly, internal records. When you think about the word "records" in any context, you are talking about past and present history of performance. Therefore, part of the data contained in the MIS will include how the product sales and movement did in the past and present. This is how you can establish a correlation of whether the marketing intervention needs to be looked at again, or whether it can remain the same.
Kotler (1988) also defines the internal records as the most important indicators of marketing performance, as they derive their value from the actual sales invoices. Therefore, the internal records are of absolute value to the MIS and include the following:
- orders received for the product
- sales invoices
Internal records are also super important because look at all the information they provide based on these indicators:
- type of product sold by industry, by size and pack type
- average value of product sold by total volume of sale by country
- average amount of product sold by pack type, by country, by customer
- average value of product sold compared to industry as a whole
- average value of the product sold by specific salesperson
These are just some of the plethora of variables internal records can generate and analyze. The breakdown of information helps the industry see where to move and what changes to make in marketing systems. Hence, this is one of the most important indicators of sales and marketing quality.