Effect of marketing mix strategies on export performance of avocado firms in Kenya
Njuguna, Nicholas James
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The agribusiness sector contributes immensely to the Kenya’s economic growth, the key achievement of desired development goals and the realization of the vision 2030. Horticulture in Kenya is the third largest foreign exchange earner and contributed Sh. 85 billion in 2015. It is a sub-sector that shows promise of further growth. As competition in the global horticultural markets intensifies, firms are deploying strategies that will create sustainable advantages against their rivals and succeed in improving export performance. Drawing from the Resource Based View (RBV) this study sought to examine the influence of the various marketing mix strategies on export performance of avocado fruit firms in Kenya. Primary data on export strategies was collected from using questionnaires delivered to 66 active avocado exporters and assessed their export performance for the period between 2014 and 2016. Secondary data on export performance of each respondent in the questionnaire was obtained from Kephis. Descriptive statistics, correlational analysis, univariate and multiple regression analysis were used to analyze the data. The study established that product; promotion, place, and price strategies positively significantly influenced export performance individually, while promotion attributes had a negative but not a significant influence export performance when considered jointly with the other marketing capabilities. Product strategy was found to be the most influential of all the market mix strategies. These findings suggest policy makers and management should adopt a market-oriented strategy, and package and deploy resources to increase the export performance of firms in this sector. Specifically, it proposes that stakeholders should improve their product strategy most in order to address the competitiveness of the international markets.