Introduction and state vs outline

Before you get started

The example answers included in this guide are for reference only. You may need to use different exam techniques and adapt your approach to the context of the question, depending on the exam board you are following.

The case study examples use the PINCC method. PINCC stands for product, industry, customers and competitors.


State is one of the most basic skills in an exam. State is often a one-mark question and will require either a short-phrase answer or just one or two words.

Examples of state questions and answers include:


State one element of the marketing mix.



State one example of a tax.

Corporation tax.


State one type of primary research conducted by businesses.



Outline questions are usually worth two marks in an exam. Outline questions require slightly more detailed answers than state or define questions. An outline question usually requires a point and an example in order to access all the available marks. Outline questions are often linked to a case study or business example. Where this is the case, it is essential that the response is linked to the case study to access all the available marks.

Tip: Using only the business name is not sufficient for context. You can include the business name in your answer, but to gain full marks you need to use information that specifically relates to the business example or industry provided in the case study.

Examples of outline questions include:


Outline one benefit to Yanna’s Bikes of an increase in uptake of cycling.

More people would be interested in purchasing bikes and other cycling equipment, such as helmets and bike pumps. This would lead to Yanna’s Bikes making more sales revenue.


Outline one way in which Aleksander’s Hair Salon could use promotion.

The hair salon could use promotion, such as radio advertisements, to help raise awareness of the haircuts and hair products offered and persuade potential customers to book appointments.


Outline one impact of changing levels of consumer income on Budget Savers supermarket.

If consumer incomes increase, this could result in lower sales for Budget Savers supermarket as customers may do their food and grocery shopping at more premium supermarkets.