In an economic system concentrating on mutually satisfying exchange relationships as the on of the marketing process, and assuming a continuation of the current direction of change in the technology of manufacturing and communications, the retail sector will continue to play a significant role in the distribution of goods and services through society. For that reason alone, spatial marketing will still have a significant place on the research agenda. On the other hand, demand-side spatial marketing may decline somewhat in importance relative to innovative supply-side, more logistics-oriented, spatial marketing. For the provision of goods and services to the "franchised" (consumers fully linked into the technologies of electronic communication and shopping), especially, supply-side considerations will significantly outweigh those on the demand side. Since the technological changes currently diffusing through society appear to empower the individual consumer in the marketing process, key factors in marketer success will involve the development of innovative methods for making supply available to individual consumers when and where they wish to use or consume it.
On the demand side, major opportunities appear to revolve around retailing's ability to enhance the value of physical patronage, much of which will depend on the re-emergence of the personal relationship between retail marketer and consumer (through both personal service and electronic advances). A role for spatial marketing will of course be the tracking of the geographic development of the customer base, as well as identification and management of geographic pockets of consumers targeted as candidates for exchange relationships.
A great deal of research will need to be devoted to blending distance with the other elements of a difficulty-of-access construct, and then studying the trade-offs individual consumers make among distance, personal service, telephone access, and so on in the selection of marketing alternatives. Spatial marketers can make a unique contribution to this body of knowledge. Perhaps it is because geographic researchers realize that each consumer lives in his or her own location and thus faces a unique spatial choice situation; but spatial marketing has a strong research tradition concentrating on discrete choices by individual consumers. As such, spatial marketers can also play an important role in studying the extent to which the tenets of spatial marketing can be extended to distances that are not necessarily measurable in terms of physical mileage or driving time alone.
Arthur W. Allaway
Michael D. Richard
The exchange perspective is more a way of viewing things than a unique theory on its own. Its focus is on the individual and causes one to think in terms of a one-on-one relationship or exchange, rather than seeing mass markets. John Stanton and I published 1 a site location study in which we looked (conceptually)