A Qualitative Study of Marketing Goods and Services to Residents of Kibera
McDonnell, Meryl Blair
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This paper will analyze marketing and its developments concerning the needs of consumers at the Bottom of the Pyramid (BoP), a sizeable socioeconomic group of people living on less than the equivalent of USD 2 a day. Efficiently providing goods and services is especially important for the wellbeing of consumers at the BoP who lack necessities. Marketing is a tool that can be used by businesses and organizations to predict, meet, and respond to the needs and wants of consumers in these situations as it encourages a deep and insightful understanding of the markets that organizations are working to serve. This paper will attempt to gain a greater understanding of the general challenges faced by businesses and organizations operating in underserved markets. Afterward, the paper will assess the ethical and practical concerns of working within unstable social and market spaces which are prevalent at the BoP. Ethically operating at the BoP may demand extra consideration, analysis, and cooperation from businesses that are not necessarily as critical in more stable situations. Once BoP markets and market dynamics are understood more fully, the paper will transition to taking a more focused look at a BoP market in the context of Kibera, an informal settlement located in Nairobi, Kenya. Finally, the project will qualitatively analyze my involvement with a Non- Governmental Organization (NGO) called the Kibera Town Centre (KTC), where I spent three months learning about Kibera and how the organization markets in services to residents of the area.