The Strategic Role of Entrepreneurial Marketing in Small and Medium Enterprises


  • Cosmas Nwankwo Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University
  • MacDonald Isaac Kanyangale University of KwaZulu-Natal


Strategic role; entrepreneurial marketing; SME


Without proper adoption of entrepreneurial marketing (EM) as a business strategy, many small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in both developed and developing economy would fail to survive. The aim of this conceptual paper is to elaborate the strategic role of EM in SMEs. To achieve this, the complexity of EM as well as the aspects of entrepreneurial marketing (EM) are discussed. The paper assert that strategic roles of EM embrace eight dimensions which are cardinal for SMEs to adopt not only to ensure the long-term direction of the business, but also leverage resources and capability to sustain advantage over competitors.


Abraham, M. (2016). Personal development with success ingredients: step-by-step guide for
success, wealth & happiness,, available at: Accessed on the 15/06/2019

Allah, M.A. & Nakhaie, H. (2011). Entrepreneurship and risk-taking, International Conference
on E-business, Management and Economics, 25, 77-79.

Al-Lawati EH (2017). Exploration of entrepreneurial marketing orientation model among SMEs
in Oman. International Journal of Economics and Management Sciences 6: 432.

Anderson, J.C., & Narus, J.A. (1998). Business marketing: understand what customers value,
Harvard Business Review, 76(6), 53-65.

Aven, T. (2014). What is safety science? Safety Science, 67, 15–20.

Bäckbrö, J. & Nyström, H. (2006). Entrepreneurial marketing: innovative value creation,
(Master’s thesis). Jönköping International Business School, Jönköping University.

Baregheh, A., Rowley, J. & Sambrook, S. (2009). Towards multi-disciplinary definition of
innovation, Management decisions, 47:8, 1323-1339

Baskara, S. & Mehta, K. (2016). What is innovation and why? Your perspective from resource
constrained environments, Technovation, 52:53, 4-17

Baverland, M. & Lockshin L. S. (2004). Crafting a competitive advantage, tampering
entrepreneurial action with positioning-based values. Qualitative market research. 7(3) 172-182.

Becherer, R.C., Helms, M.M. & McDonald, J.P. (2012). The effect of entrepreneurial marketing
on outcome goals in SMEs, New England Journal of Entrepreneurship, 15(1), 7-18,

Becherer, R.C, Haynes, P.J, & Helms, M.M. (2008). An exploratory investigation of
entrepreneurial marketing in SMEs: the influence of the owner/operator. Journal of Business and Entrepreneurship, 20, 44-63.

Bijloos, A.D. (2017). Ethics and risk toward a responsible approach to acceptable risk
impositions. Doctoral Thesis submitted to the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at Stellenbosch University.

Bjerke, B. & Hultman, C. M. (2002). Entrepreneurial marketing: the growth of small firms in the
new economic era, Edward Elgar Publishing Limited, Gloucestershire.

Brege, H. (2018). Exploring proactive market strategies managing the market to create value,
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology, Licentiate Thesis, Department of Management and Engineering, Linköping University.

Cameron, K. S. & Quinn, R. E. (2011). Diagnosing and changing organizational culture:
based on the competing values framework. Jossey-Bass.

Carter, M., & Tamayo, A. (2017). Entrepreneurial and entrepreneurial skills of managers as
determinant of organizational performance of small and medium enterprises in Davao Region, Philippines.

Deshpande, R., Farley, J. U. & Webster, F. E. Jr. (1993). Corporate culture, customer
orientation and innovativeness, Journal of Marketing, 57 (1), 23–37.

Dias, Á.L. (2013). A measure of market sensing capabilities, EMAC, 1-7

Dimoji F. A. & Onwuneme L. N (2016). Small and medium scale enterprises and sustainable
economic development in Nigeria. Proceedings of 33rd International Business Research Conference 4 - 5 January 2016, Dubai.

Du, S., Bhattacharya, C.B., & Sen, S. (2010). Maximizing business returns to corporate social
responsibility (CSR): The role of CSR communication. International Journal of Management Reviews, 12 (1), 8 – 19.

Effiom, L. & Edet, S.E. (2018). Success of small and medium enterprises in Nigeria: do
environmental factors matter? Journal of Economics and Sustainable Development, 9(4), 117-127.

Farniha, L., Ferreira, J. & Gouveia, B. (2016). Network of Innovation and Competitiveness: A
triple Helix case study, Journal of the knowledge economy, 7:1, 259-275

Fiore, A.M., Niehm, L.S, Son, J. & Sadachar, A. (2013). Entrepreneurial marketing: scale
validation with small, independently-owned businesses, Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness. 7(4), 63-86

Ghorbanhosseini, M. (2013). The effect of organizational culture, teamwork and organizational
development on organizational commitment: the mediating role of human capital, Technical Gazette, 20(6), 1019-1025

Gürbüz, G., & Aykol, S. (2009). Entrepreneurial management, entrepreneurial orientation and
Turkish small firm growth. Management Research News, 32(4), 321-336.

Gwadabe, U.M. & Amirah, N.A. (2017). Entrepreneurial competencies: SMES performance
factor in the challenging Nigerian economy, Academic Journal of Economic Studies, 3(4), 55–61

Hacioglu, G., Eren, S.S., Eren, M.S., & Celikkan, H. (2012). The effect of entrepreneurial
marketing on firms’ innovative performance in Turkish SMEs. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 58(12), 871–878.

Hills, G., Hultman, C., Kraus, S., & Schulte, R. (2010). History, theory and evidence of
entrepreneurial marketing: An overview. International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management 11.

Hills, G.E., & Hultman, C.M. (2011). Academic roots: the past and present of entrepreneurial
marketing. Journal of Small Business and Entrepreneurship, 24, (1), 1-10.

Hills, G.E., Hultman, C.M., & Miles, M.P. (2008). The evolution and development of
entrepreneurial marketing. Journal of Small Business Management, 46(1), 99-112.

Hill, J. & Wright, L.T. (2000). Defining the scope of entrepreneurial marketing: a qualitative
approach, Journal of Enterprising Culture, 8(1), 23-46.

Holmes, C. & Jorlov, K. (2015). Entrepreneurial marketing: a descriptive study of Swedish
charitable organizations. Master Thesis, Umea School of Business and Economics, Umea University, Sweden.

Idemobi, E.I., (2016). Critical skills for entrepreneurship success: how to become successful in
your own business, Awka: De-Emeralds Printing & Publishing

IFC (2010). Scaling-up SME access to financial services in the developing world, international
finance corporation, world bank group, Washington D.C.,

Ifekwem, N. & Adedamola, O. (2016). Survival strategies and sustainability of small and
medium enterprises in the Oshodi-Isolo Local Government Area of Lagos State. Acta Univ. Sapientiae, economics and Business, 4, 103–118.

Ionita, D. (2012). Entrepreneurial marketing: a new approach for challenging times. Management and Marketing Challenges for the Knowledge Society, 7, (1), 131-150.

Ismail, M.D., Isa, M.I., Alam, S.S. & Ahmad, M. (2016). Market orientation, entrepreneurship
orientation, relationship commitment and communication among SME exporters in Malaysia, Malaysian Journal of Society and Space. 12(1); 19 – 28.

Jaworski, B., Kohli, A.K. & Sahay, A. (2000). Market driven versus driving markets. Journal of
the Academy of Marketing Science, 28(1):45-54.

Johnson, R. H., Macpherson, C. F., Smith, A. W., Block, R. G., & Keyton, J. (2016).
Facilitating teamwork in adolescent and young adult oncology. Journal of Oncology Practice, 12(11), 1067-1074.

Johnson, G., Whittington, R., Scholes, K., Angwin, D. & Regner, P. (2017). Exploring Trategy:
Text and case (11th Edition), United Kingdom: Pearson Education Limited

Jones, R. & Rowley, J. (2011). Entrepreneurial marketing in small businesses: a conceptual
exploration. International Small Business Journal, 29, 25-36.

Kapepa, O., & Van Vuuren, J., (2019). The importance of tolerance for failure and risk-taking
among insurance firms in hyperinflationary Zimbabwe, Southern African Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management, 11(1), 1-15.

Kerr, S.P., Kerr, W.R. & Xu, T. (2017). Personality traits of entrepreneurs: a review of recent
literature. Working Paper, 18(047), 1-50.

Khan, S. & Al Mashikhi, L.S. (2017). Impact of teamwork on employee’s performance,
International Journal of Education and Social Science, 4(11). 14-22

Kilenthong, P., Hills, G.E. & Hultman, C.M. (2015). An empirical investigation of
entrepreneurial marketing dimensions. Journal of International Marketing Strategy 3(1), 1-18

Korkman, O. (2006). Customer value formation in practice: a practice-theoretical approach. (Doctoral Dissertation), Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration.

Kotler (2013). Entrepreneurial marketing in USA. Journal of Social Sciences, 27(8), 340-357

Kotler, P., & Keller, K.L. (2016). Marketing management (14thed.). Boston. Prentice Hall,

Kraus, S., Harms, R., & Fink, M. (2010). Entrepreneurial marketing: moving beyond marketing in new ventures. International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management, 11(1), 19-34.

Kurgun, H., Bagiran, D., Ozeren, E., & Maral, B. (2011). Entrepreneurial marketing-the interface
between marketing and entrepreneurship: a qualitative research on boutique hotels, European Journal of Social Science, 26 (3), 340-357.

Linton, G. (2019). Innovativeness, risk-taking, and proactiveness in startups: a case study and
conceptual development, Journal of Global Entrepreneurship Research, 9: 20.

Lusch, R. F., & Vargo, S. L. (2014). Service-dominant logic: premises, perspectives,
possibilities. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.

Manley, L.L., (2015). The use of traditional versus e-marketing in SMEs in a developing
country: a comparative analysis, Journal of Governance and Regulation, 4(1), 202-212.

Matsuno, K., Mentzer, J.T. & O’zsomer, A. (2002). The effects of intrapreneurial proclivity and
market orientation on business performance, Journal of Marketing, 66, 18-32.

Miles, M.P., & Darroch, J. (2006). Large firms, entrepreneurial marketing processes, and the
cycle of competitive advantage. European Journal of Marketing 40, 485-501.

Morris, M.H., Schindehutte, M., & LaForge, R.W. (2002). Entrepreneurial marketing: a
construct for integrating emerging entrepreneurship and marketing perspectives. Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 10(4), 1-19.

Morris, M. H., Coombes, S., Schindehutte, M., & Allen, J. (2007). Antecedents and outcomes of
entrepreneurial and market orientations in a non-profit context: Theoretical and empirical insights. Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies, 13(4), 12-39.

Morrish, S. C. & Deacon, J. H, (2011). A tale of two spirits: entrepreneurial marketing at
42below vodka and Penderryn Whisky. Journal of Small Business and Entrepreneurship, 24, 113-123.

Morrish, S.C. (2011). Entrepreneurial marketing: a strategy for the twenty-first century? Journal
of Research in Marketing and Entrepreneurship, 13(2), 110–119.

Ndubisi, E.C. (2016). Marketing management: Principle and practice, Enugu: Optima-Publisher.

Neneh, B.N. & van Zyl, J. (2017). Entrepreneurial orientation and its impact on firm growth
amongst SMEs in South Africa. Problems and Perspectives in Management, 15(3), 166-178.

Nwaizugbo, I.C & Anukam, A.I (2014). Assessment of entrepreneurial marketing practices
among small and medium scale enterprise in Imo State Nigeria: Prospects and challenges. Review of Contemporary Business Research, 3(1), 77-98

Nwankwo, C.A. & Kanyangale, M.I. (2019). Deconstructing entrepreneurial marketing
dimensions in small and medium-sized enterprises in Nigeria: A literature analysis, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing, In-press.

Octavia, A. & Ali, H. (2017). The model of market orientation, entrepreneurial orientation and
business performance of small and medium enterprises, International Review of Management and Marketing, 7(3), 331-337.

OECD (2016). Entrepreneurship at a glance 2016, OECD Publishing, Paris.

OECD (2017). Enhancing the contributions of SMEs in a global and digitalised economy, OECD
Publishing, Paris.

Olaniyan, T., Ogbuanu, B. & Oduguwa, A., (2017). Effect of entrepreneurial marketing on SMEs
development in Nigeria, International Journal of Advanced Studies in Business Strategies and Management. 5 (2), 40-60

Olaniran, M. & Narnusonge, E. (2016). The role of innovation on performance of films on
Nigeria stock exchange. International Journal of Management and Social Science, 4(1), 3-10.

Olannye, A.P & Eromafuru E. (2016). The dimension of entrepreneurial marketing on the
performance of fast food restaurants in Asaba, Delta State, Nigeria, Journal of Emerging
Trends in Economics and Management Sciences (JETEMS) 7(3):137-146.

Oparah, P. C., Aghara, G. C., Ndubuisi, V. N. O. A., & Chidozie, E. (2018). The importance of
marketing in entrepreneurial development and poverty alleviation in Nigeria. International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, 8(10), 524–538.

Osakwe, C.N., Chovancova, M. & Ogbonna, B.U. (2016). Linking SMEs profitability to brand
orientation and market-sensing capability: a service sector evidence, Periodica Polytechnica Social and Management Sciences, 24(1), 34-40.

Outram, S., Harris, G., Kelly, B., Cohen, M., Bylund, C. L., Landa, Y., & Loughland, C. (2015).
Contextual barriers to discussing a schizophrenia diagnosis with patients and families: need for leadership and teamwork training in psychiatry, Academic Psychiatry, 39(2), 174-180.

Payne, A.F., Storbacka, K. & Frow, P. (2008). Managing the co-creation of value. Journal of the
Academy of Marketing Science, 36, 83-96.

Piercy F. N. (2008). Market-led strategic change: transforming the process of going to market,
4/e Butterworth-Heinemann, Burlington, USA.

Rasmussen, E., Mosey, S., & Wright, M. (2011). The evolution of entrepreneurial competencies:
a longitudinal study of university spin-off venture emergence. Journey of Management Studies, 48(6), 1314-1345.

Rauch, A., Wiklund, J., Lumpkin, G. T. & Frese, M. (2009). Entrepreneurial orientation and
business performance: an assessment of past research and suggestions for the future. Entrepreneurship: Theory & Practice, 33 (3), 761–787.

Resnick, S., Cheng, R., Simpson, M. & Lourenço, F. (2016). Marketing in SMEs: A “4Ps” self-
branding model, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, 22(1), 155-174.

Rousseau, V., Aube, C., & Savoie, A. (2006). Teamwork behaviors: a review and an integration
of frameworks, Small Group Research, 37(5), 540–570.

Shah, D., Rust, R. T., Parasuraman, A., Staelin, R., & Day, G. S. (2006). The path to customer
centricity, Journal of Service Research, (9:2), 113–124.

Shaw, E. (2004). Marketing in the social enterprise context: is it entrepreneurial? Qualitative
Market Research, 7(3), 194.

Sousa‐e‐silva, C.M., Moriguchi, S.A. & Lopes, J.E.F. (2015). Proposing a model for measuring
the perceived value of b2b logistics environment, International Association for Management of Technology Conference Proceedings, 2040-2057.

Spence, M. & Essoussi, L.H. (2010). SME brand building and management: an exploratory
study, European Journal of Marketing, 44(7/8), 1037–1054.

Stenberg, A. (2017). What does Innovation mean - a term without a clear definition. Unpublished

Stokes, D. (2000). Putting entrepreneurship into marketing: The process of entrepreneurial
marketing. Journal of Research in Marketing & Entrepreneurship, 2(1), 1–16.

Suardhika, I.N. & Suryani, N.K. (2016). Strategic role of entrepreneurial marketing and
customer relation marketing to improve competitive advantage in small and medium enterprises in Bali Indonesia, International Journal of Management and Commerce Innovations, 4(1), 628-637.

Taghipourian, M.J. & Gharib, Z. (2015). Entrepreneurial marketing in insurance industry,
State or private? Compare and prioritize, International Academic Journal of Business Management, 2(12), 1-10.

Tang, J. & Murphy, P.J. (2012). Prior knowledge and new product and service introductions by
entrepreneurial firms: the mediating role of technological innovation, Journal of Small Business Management, 50(1), 41-62.

Toghraee, M. Rezvani, M. Mobaraki, M.H. & Yadollahi Farsi, J. (2017), Entrepreneurial
marketing in creative art-based businesses, International Journal of Management Practice, 10(4).

Trinh, T.H., Liem, N.T. & Kachitvichyanukul, V. (2014). A game theory approach for value co-
creation systems, Production & Manufacturing Research, 2(1), 253-265

van Vuuren, J., & Wörgötter, N. (2013). Market driving behaviour in organisations: antecedents
and outcomes. South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences, 16(2), 115-141.

Whalen, P.S. & Akaka, M.A. (2016). A dynamic market conceptualization for entrepreneurial
marketing: the co-creation of opportunities, Journal of Strategic Marketing, 24:1, 61-75.

Whalen, P., Uslay, C., Pascal, V.J., Omura, G., McAuley, A., Kasouf, C.J., … Deacon, J. (2016).
Anatomy of competitive advantage: towards a contingency theory of entrepreneurial marketing, Journal of Strategic Marketing, 24(1), 5-19.




How to Cite

Nwankwo, C., & Kanyangale, M. I. (2020). The Strategic Role of Entrepreneurial Marketing in Small and Medium Enterprises: Array. Acta Universitatis Danubius. Œconomica, 16(4). Retrieved from



Business Administration and Business Economics