List of essays on Marketing. Marketing is a comprehensive term and it includes all resources and a set of activities necessary to direct and facilitate the flow of goods and services from producer to consumer. Businessman regards marketing as a management function to plan, promote and deliver products to the clients or customers. Human efforts, finance and management constitute the primary resources in marketing.
Audience: This essay is written in easy and simple words for school, college and university students.
List of Essays on Marketing for School, College and University Students
Marketing is a comprehensive term and it includes all resources and a set of activities necessary to direct and facilitate the flow of goods and services from producer to consumer. Businessman regards marketing as a management function to plan, promote and deliver products to the clients or customers. Human efforts, finance and management constitute the primary resources in marketing.
Marketing starts with identification of customer’s wants and then satisfying those wants through products and services. The modern concept of marketing is customer-oriented and focuses on earning profit through customer satisfaction.
Prof. Drucker states that the first function of marketing is to create a customer or market. Customer is the most important person in the whole marketing process. He is the cause and purpose of all marketing activities.
According to Philip Kotler, “Marketing is a human activity directed at satisfying needs and wants through exchange process.” All marketing activities are basically for meeting the needs of customers and also raising social welfare. We have twin activities which are most significant in marketing- (a) Matching the product with demand, i.e., customer needs and desires or target market, (b) The transfer of ownership and possession at every stage in the flow of goods from the primary producer to the ultimate consumer.
According to William Stanton, “Marketing is a total system of business activities designed to plan, price, promote and distribute want-satisfying products to target markets to achieve organisational objectives.”
The American Marketing Association defines marketing as the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organisational objectives.
Paul Mazur defined marketing as the creation and delivery of a standard of living to society. This definition catches the real spirit of the marketing process. It has consumer- orientation. It duly honours the marketing concept which indicates a shift from product to customer-orientation, i.e., fulfillment of customer needs and desires. It emphasises the major function of marketing, viz., satisfaction of customer and social demand for material goods and services.
Example- In the case of oral care products, currently only 47 per cent of the rural population use toothpaste, 23 per cent use tooth powder and the rest neither. Targeting non-users in rural areas and developing awareness about oral hygiene and converting them to tooth powder/toothpaste users.
1. Marketing activities are aimed at satisfying the needs and desires of consumers and therefore, finding out consumer needs and wants is the starting point for all marketing activities. It starts with consumers and ends with consumers by satisfying their needs.
2. Marketing is a continuous activity and the goods are manufactured and distributed to the consumers as per demand.
3. Marketing deals with exchange of goods and services with money as the medium of exchange.
4. Marketing concept has undergone changes over a period of time i.e., the recent one is the societal marketing concept which focuses on three factors- customer demand satisfaction, public interest and profitability.
5. Marketing creates time, place and possession utilities. The consumer is able to obtain the right product at the right time at the right place as and when he requires.
6. Production and marketing are related and production takes place based on the needs and expectations of the consumer.
7. Marketing facilities large-scale production, employment opportunities and social welfare.
8. Marketing is an integral part of business. The survival and growth of business depend upon the effectiveness of marketing operations in an organisation.
9. Marketing is an integrated process and is based on strategies and plans.
10. The long-term objective of marketing is profit maximization through customer satisfaction.
Modern marketing begins with the customer, not with production, sales, technological landmarks and it ends with the customer satisfaction and social well-being. Under market- driven economy, buyer or customer is the king. The marketer should find out what the consumers wish to purchase and how much they are willing to pay. The company should then decide whether the desired product can be produced and sold at the price consumers will pay and at a profit to the company.
Marketing covers the following:
1. Seeking- The purpose of seeking is to discover the customer and customer needs. The marketing opportunity is revealed through an analysis of the environment.
2. Matching- Marketing is a matching process. Customer demand has to be matched with organisational resources and environmental limitations, such as competition, government regulations, general economic conditions, and so on.
3. Programming- The marketing programme, called the marketing mix, covering Product, Price, Promotion and Place (distribution) strategies (4 P’s) will be formulated and implemented to accomplish the twin objectives of customer satisfaction and profitability.
Marketing is an ongoing process of- (1) Discovering and translating consumer needs and desires into products and services (through planning and producing the planned products), (2) Creating demand for these products and services (through promotion and pricing), (3) Serving the consumer demand (through planned physical distribution) with the help of marketing channels, and then, in turn, (4) Expanding the market even in the face of keen competition.
The modern marketer is called upon to set the marketing objectives, develop the marketing plan, organise the marketing function, implement the marketing plan or programme (marketing mix) and control the marketing programme to assure the accomplishment of the set of marketing objectives. The marketing programme covers product planning or merchandising, price, promotion and physical distribution.
Four basic approaches are commonly used to describe the marketing system:
Under the commodity approach, we study the flow of certain commodity and its journey from the original producer right up to the final customer. In such a study, we can locate the centre of production, people engaged in buying and selling of the product, mode of transportation, problem of selling and advertising the product, problems of financing it, problems arising out of its storage and so on.
Through such an approach, we can find out the differences in marketing products, services and problems. Thus, we can have a fuller picture of the field of marketing. Marketing of agricultural products such as cotton, wheat, jute represent the commodity approach.
Under the functional approach, we concentrate our attention on the specialised service or functions or activities performed by marketers. The study of marketing functions (like, buying, selling, storage, risk-bearing, transport, financing, and providing information) represents the functional approach to the marketing system.
Under the institutional approach, our main interest centres round the marketing institutions or agencies such as wholesalers, retailers, transport undertakings, banks and insurance companies etc., who participate in discharging their marketing responsibilities during the movement of distribution of goods. We try to find out how these various business institutions and agencies work together to form a total marketing system.
A system is a set of interacting or interdependent components or groups co-ordinated to form a unified whole and organised marketing activities to accomplish a set of objectives.
In the model of systems approach we have:
4. Outputs, and
The system is designed to achieve objectives or goals according to a plan, which provides for the processing of inputs and the discharge of appropriate outputs. The objectives direct the process control monitors the process. Information feedback gives information from internal and external sources and it is the basis for future change in the system.
An open system has its own environment giving the inputs and accepting the outputs. Inputs are processed, producing outputs to meet the objective. The twin objectives of marketing system are customer satisfaction and profitability.
The systems approach provides the best model for marketing activity. It places emphasis on the inputs to the system and the outputs produced. It helps in the determination of marketing and corporate goals, and the development of marketing programmes and the total marketing mix.
Adoption of a systems approach provides a good basis for the logical and orderly analysis of marketing activities. It stresses marketing linkages inside and outside the firm. It emphasises changing environment. It provides a framework for control. It depends on using the right information. Markets can be understood only through study of information.
The output establishes the purpose or objective of a system. The objective is profits through serving the demand of consumers and community. The output of marketing system is sales of goods. Correct inputs must be available to the processor i.e., marketing administration in order to produce desirable outputs.
These inputs in the marketing system are the elements of marketing-mix and the target market determined through marketing research. The marketing system must operate as per plans and policies and within control which may be internal or external. Of course, feedback must be available for introducing corrections in the future plans and marketing operations.
The flow of information required to check performance is called feedback. Feedback ensures the accomplishment of objectives through continuous marketing managerial process of planning-action-control. Marketing environment can be broken down into a number of layers. The inner layers become the subsystems of the outer layer. Output from one layer becomes the input for the next.
Marketing plan is a system and its parts or components are subsystems. There are four components or subsystems of marketing plan or marketing-mix- (1) The product management system to manage products from introduction to market withdrawal, (2) Channel and physical distribution system to manage distribution channels and the flow of goods to the market, (3) Promotion system to coordinate all means of promotion to stimulate demand, and (4) Price system designing prices for a line of products sold to customers under different selling conditions.
Marketing management revolves around these four areas of marketing- mix or plan. Marketing information system provides data for decision-making in all marketing areas or problems. It is also a part of marketing system.
The systems model (plan-inputs-processing-outputs-feedback-environment) placed emphasis on the inputs of resources as per plan, discharge of outputs and marketing information flow. It enables the determination of goals as well as development of strategies and programmes to achieve those goals through feedback control mechanism.
Essay on Marketing – 2 (1000 Words)
Traditionally, marketing has been defined as follows – “Marketing includes all activities that direct the flow of goods and services from the producers to the consumers or users.” This definition is product oriented as it does not consider the needs of the customers. It emphasises sale of goods produced by the producer and thus considers marketing in a narrow sense of ‘telling and selling’.
Modern definitions of marketing are based on the philosophy that “Satisfaction of customers is the basic purpose of business”. According to Philip Kotler, “Marketing is a social process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating, offering and freely exchanging products and services of value with others”.
This implies matching of products with what is demanded in the market. This requires determining the requirements of potential customers and then developing and supplying those products which meet their requirements. If a business produces the products to satisfy the requirements of customers, it is more likely to be successful in achieving its objectives.
Definitions of Marketing:
Marketing is a social process by which products are matched with markets and through which the consumer is able to use or enjoy the product. It makes goods and services more useful to the society by creating place, time and possession utilities. —Cundiff and Still
Marketing is a social process by which individual and groups obtain what they need and want through creating, offering and freely exchanging products and services of value with others. —Philip Kotler
The present day marketing is consumer oriented rather than product oriented. Product planning, pricing, promotion and distribution are so organised that the needs of the customers are satisfied fully. In the words of Stanton, “Marketing is a total system of interacting business activities designed to plan, price, promote and distribute wants satisfying products and services to present and potential customers”. Consumer oriented marketing ensures that all business activities revolve around the customer.
The essential elements of marketing are as follows:
(i) Two Parties:
There are at least two parties – buyer or customer on the one hand, and seller or marketer on the other.
(ii) Exchange of Value:
Exchange of goods and services between the seller and the buyer takes place for a valuable consideration. In other words, the parties have something viewed valuable by each other. That means the buyer can offer value and the seller can offer goods which are perceived to be of value by the buyer.
The parties are free to interact and accept or reject the offer of each other.
Marketing satisfies the needs of both the parties. The consumers gets want satisfying goods and services and the seller gets value in terms of money for his offering.
Marketing as a Process of Managing Profitable Customer Relationships:
According to Philip Kotler, “Marketing is the process by which companies create value for customers and build strong customer relationships in order to capture value from customers in return.”
Globalisation and rise of information technology (IT) have increased the expectations of customers. They don’t buy products or brands, but ‘a set of benefits or values’. They expect marketers to be concerned with their total satisfaction. The marketers association with the customer continues even after the sale of the product and this is what is called relationship marketing.
Thus, marketing is a process consisting of the following interrelated elements:
(i) Understand the market and customer needs and wants.
(ii) Design the product to satisfy customer needs and wants.
(iii) Develop an integrated marketing program that delivers superior value to the customer.
(iv) Build profitable relationships with, customers and offer ‘customer delight’.
(v) Capture value from customers to create profits and customer equity.
Marketing enables people to satisfy their needs and wants through exchange relationships. Exchange is the act of obtaining a desired product (or benefit) from a company by offering money value in return. Marketing also involves actions taken by the marketer to build and maintain desirable exchange relationships with target customers.
Marketers try to build strong relationships by consistently delivering superior customer value. Besides attracting new customers, they also try to retain the existing customers. These are the two basic goals of modern marketing.
The key to building lasting customer relationships is to create (i) superior customer value, and (ii) satisfaction. A customer buys from the firm that offers the highest customer perceived value, i.e., the customer’s evaluation of the difference between all the benefits and all the costs of a market offering (i.e., product) relative to those of other firms. Many people prefer to buy sweets from Haldiram’s store as compared to other sweet shops because of higher perceived value.
Market and Related Concepts:
Traditionally, the term ‘market’ refers to the place where buyers and sellers meet for exchange of goods and services. It is in this sense that we refer to Chandni Chowk Market, Kamla Nagar Market, Janpath Market and other markets in Delhi. The buyers go to the market to purchase the goods of their choice.
These days the term ‘market’ has acquired a broader meaning. If refers to actual and potential buyers of a product or service, whom the sellers can approach through various means of communication and transport.
For example, a marketer can approach prospective buyers through web advertising and a customer can purchase goods from his residence or office by placing order on telephone or cell phone or using internet and e-mail. Physical meeting between the parties to buy and sell is not necessary.
Customer Needs, Wants and Demands:
Marketing begins with human needs and wants. Needs are feelings of deprivation of some satisfaction. People need food, air, water, clothing and shelter to survive. These needs exist in the very nature of human biology and marketers do not create them. Wants are desires for satisfaction of needs. Human needs are few but wants are many. Human wants are continually shaped and reshaped by families, social institutions and cultural factors.
Demands are wants for specific products and services. They are backed by the ability and willingness to buy. Wants which are supported by purchasing power become demands. Marketers influence wants and demands by making products attractive, affordable and easily available to the target group of consumers. For example, a marketer might promote the idea that a certain brand of pen (e.g., Parker) would satisfy the need for social status.
Essay on Marketing – 3 (700 Words)
Marketing starts with identifying customer needs and wants and ends with satisfying them through a coordinated set of activities that also allows a firm to achieve its own goals. Awareness of this fact gave rise to the marketing concept. The marketing concept embraces all the activities of a firm. It aims at matching the company’s offering with customer needs, to achieve the desired level of customer satisfaction and generate profits for the company.
The marketing concept is based on the beliefs that are as follows:
(a) The company’s planning and operations are customer-oriented,
(b) The goals of the company should be profitable sales volume and not just volume, and
(c) All marketing activities should be coordinated effectively.
Cundiff and Still, “marketing is the business process by which products are matched with market and through which transfer of ownership affected”.
Tousley, Clark and Clark “marketing consist of those efforts which affect transfer of ownership of goods and services and provide for the physical distribution”.
H.L. Hansen Marketing is the process of discovering and translating consumer needs and wants into products and service specification, creating demand for these products and services and then turns expanding this demand.
According to American Marketing Association, ‘marketing is the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organizational goals.
Marketing is defined as “the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large”.
The term developed from the original meaning which referred literally to going to a market to buy or sell goods or services. Seen from a systems point of view, sales process engineering views marketing as “a set of processes that are interconnected and interdependent with other functions, whose methods can be improved using a variety of relatively new approaches.”
The Chartered Institute of Marketing defines marketing as “the management process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably”.
Marketing is used to create the customer, to keep the customer and to satisfy the customer. With the customer as the focus of its activities, it can be concluded that marketing management is one of the major components of business management. It is an integrated process through which companies create value for customers and build strong customer relationships in order to capture value from customers in return.
As a managerial definition, marketing is described as “the art of selling products”. But Peter Drucker, a leading management theorist, says that “the aim of marketing is to make selling superfluous. The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well that the product or service fits him and sells itself. Ideally, marketing should result in a customer who is ready to buy”.
Traditional and Modern Concepts of Marketing:
Old or traditional concept of marketing was limited up to profit generation by high volume of sales and production of products at a large scale, how to distribute products from producers to customers in an efficient manner. Marketing activities were concentrated toward selling; later on with rise of competition marketers gave more emphasis to promotion activities to increase their market share and profitability. Salesmanship and product promotion were the main part of marketing policy of a business firm.
Modern concept has shifted from selling to customer satisfaction, modern marketing concept aim at how to understand a customer in a better way it is possible by exploring customer’s want and expectations and marketing behaviour. Products manufactured by firms should match with the demand and expectation of customers.
Under marketing concept a customer should be ready to buy the products on his own initiative, how to create demand in market by customer satisfaction is the main essence of modern concept. Now customer is well aware about his rights, quality and customer services, therefore marketing should be customer oriented, a strong communication network is needed to build high brand equity and goodwill in market.
Marketing is an important functional area of business which generates revenues through the sale of satisfying goods and services to the customers. It involves taking decisions in the areas of product, price, place and promotion keeping in view the requirements of the customers business. In this article, the nature of marketing management, implications of modern marketing concept, objectives of marketing, distinction between marketing and selling and also the tools of marketing mix.
Short Essay on Marketing – 4 (400 Words)
Marketing is the process by which companies determine what products or services may be of interest to customers, and the strategy to use in sales, communications and business development.
It is an integrated process through which companies create value for customers and build strong customer relationships in order to capture value from customers in return.
Marketing is used to identify the customer, to keep the customer and to satisfy the customer. With the customer as the focus of its activities, it can be concluded that marketing management is one of the major components of business management. The evolution of marketing was caused due to mature markets and overcapacities in the last 2-3 centuries. Companies then shifted the focus from production to the customer in order to stay profitable.
The term marketing concept holds that achieving organizational goals depends on knowing the needs and wants of target markets and delivering the desired satisfactions. It proposes that in order to satisfy its organizational objectives, an organization should anticipate the needs and wants of consumers and satisfy these more effectively than competitors.
Marketing is defined by the American Marketing Association AMA as “the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.”
The term developed from the original meaning which referred literally to going to a market to buy or sell goods or services. Seen from a systems point of view, sales process engineering views marketing as “a set of processes that are interconnected and interdependent with other functions, whose methods can be improved using a variety of relatively new approaches.”
The Chartered Institute of Marketing defines marketing as “the management process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably.” A different concept is the value-based marketing which states the role of marketing to contribute to increasing shareholder value.
In this context, marketing is defined as “the management process that seeks to maximise returns to shareholders by developing relationships with valued customers and creating a competitive advantage.”
Marketing practice tended to be seen as a creative industry in the past, which included advertising, distribution and selling. However, because the academic study of marketing makes extensive use of social sciences, psychology, sociology, mathematics, economics, anthropology and neuroscience, the profession is now widely recognized as a science, allowing numerous universities to offer Master-of-Science (MSc) programmes.
The overall process starts with marketing research and goes through market segmentation, business planning and execution, ending with pre and post-sales promotional activities. It is also related to many of the creative arts. The marketing literature is also adept at re-inventing itself and its vocabulary according to the times and the culture.
Marketing as a term is widely used in the management of a business and in our day- to-day life. In the era of customer and competition driven business world, marketing is not just the domain for the marketing department in a company. It’s a philosophy; it’s a business orientation now. It is imbibed in the corporate vision and mission of the successful companies.
All the successful companies in India like Tata, Reliance, Mahindra, Bharti Airtel, Maruti, Birla, Bajaj, Dabur, Patanjali etc., are thriving by understanding and delivering value to the Indian consumers to serve them in a better way than their competitors.
“Marketing is a process of exchange through which needs and wants are satisfied”, so can be the definition of markets given by Philip Kotler is paraphrased.
A better explanation can be given-
“Market is not merely spatial in nature; the buyers and sellers constitute the market, even though not face-to-face. Marketing involves not merely selling but reaching out customers to sell things they want. Thus product- mix, price-mix, distribution-mix and promotion-mix are the four corner stones of marketing. Even consumption patterns and the dictates of consumers are a part of the marketing strategy and then we have to include the policies relating to taxes and subsidies and/or regulations as they affect the product, price, distribution and promotion mixes.”
Another famous name in marketing Peter Drucker emphasized that marketing issues permeate all areas of the enterprise.
There are four most important aspects of marketing and they are:
1. Choosing the product mix;
2. Choosing the price mix;
3. Planning the distributional network; and
4. Market promotion.
These are also known as four Ps [product, price, place (distribution) and promotion], “Consumer is the king” (meaning consumer dictates and is always right) has given way to “consumer is the queen”, (meaning thereby that decision are taken by the lady of the house), are the sayings that give guidepost for developing marketing. There are firms, institutions, persons and governments involved in marketing. There are historical stages of marketing.
Rudimentary barter system is exchange of “commodities with commodities” (we should not call “goods” with “goods” from the “secondary/manufacturing” sector.) By the time there is trading in “goods”, barter system gets superseded. Rural marketing in India still has a good-sized component of the barter economy. Vegetables, edible oil, pulses, milk-products and food grains are taken and given in barter in rural areas.
Transitional stage and concurrent stage between barter and monetised exchange exists (as in India even in the 21st Century). As specialisation and industrial activities develop, barter gives way to exchange with money. However, rural areas continue to have barter transactions. (Some kabaadies in India who recycle the wastes of the households as non-functional fans, old newspapers to n number of things sometimes offer double trade e.g., give anything @ Rs. 15/- and make the payment adjusted against the junk that will be taken by them.
All types of modern markets with their spatial ramifications develop in the developing economy as in India.
Fully modern marketing system will have to satisfy two conditions:
1. There is no barter there, and
2. Even plastic money (credit/debit cards) is used.
Micro-management of marketing is not concerned with increasing the purchasing power.
Macro-management of marketing should aim at various things like:
1. Laying down rules and regulations for all types of marketing;
2. Selling “social marketing” of such ideas as of family planning and/or or advising persons how to save themselves from aids; or
3. Improving purchasing power or entitlements of all groups.
Marketing of primary, secondary and tertiary sector (services) follow one basic principle—how to optimise profits, if not maximise.
What is Marketing? – Definitions of Marketing:
The Chartered Institute of Marketing defines marketing as ‘The management process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably’
Oxford Dictionaries define Marketing ‘as the process of performing market research, selling products and /or services to customers and promoting them via advertising to further enhance sales.’
Kotler Philip, Gary Armstrong, Veronica Wong, and John Saunders are of the view that ‘Marketing as an integrated process through which companies build strong customer relationships and create value for their customers and for themselves.’ It generates the strategy that underlies sales techniques, business communication, and business developments.
Paliwoda, Stanley J and John K. Ryans believe in a different concept called the value-based marketing, which states the role of marketing to contribute to increasing shareholder value.
American Marketing Association’s (AMA) has defined as following:
‘Marketing is an organizational function and a set of processes for creating, communicating, and delivering value to customers and for managing customer relationships in ways that benefit the organization and its stakeholders.’
Above definition was applicable till Sept., 2007. Now with the ever changing business environment, the definition of Marketing also underwent a lot of change from Oct., 2007.
Now, AMA defines Marketing as:
‘Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.’
Marketing is not just an organizational function, but it is an activity and a set of institutions are involved. Now the customers, organisation and its stakeholders have also been rephrased as Customers, Clients, Partners and Society at large. Now Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is as important as Partner Relationship Management (PRM). Societal welfare is as important as the company’s welfare.
Panasonic’s ‘Eco Ideas’, Nokia’s ‘Take Back Campaign’, HP’s ‘Power to Change’ and Toyota’s initiative for Hybrid Green Vehicles are few examples of corporate initiative for the society at large.
Philip Kotler, a well-known authority on marketing has termed marketing as a ‘societal process by which individual and groups obtain what they need and want through creating, offering and freely exchanging products and services of value with others.’ Marketing can also be said as the process of ‘satisfying needs and wants through an exchange process’.
In a simpler way, Kotler has defined Marketing in terms of CCDVTP, which means creating, communicating and delivering value to the target market at a profit.
Thus, Marketing is all about identifying and meeting human and social needs and that too in a profitable way. Ultimately, the objective of any business activity is to make profits.
On the whole, we can say that CCCCC STP PPPP encompasses all the aspects in marketing. Sounds confusing, let me clarify, Marketing is all about 5Cs, STP and 4Ps. 5Cs stands for Customers, Company, Competitors, Collaborators and Context. While STP stands for Segmentation, Targeting and Positioning; whereas 4Ps represent the Marketing Mix i.e. Product, Price, Place and Promotion.
Essay on Business Marketing – 6 (2500 Words)
Marketing plays a critical role in modern business practice, where maximizing shareholder value is an increasingly important goal. The essence of business marketing focuses on how firms attract, retain, grow customers — critical firm assets — by enhancing relationships with them.
Success in delivering customer value leads directly to improving shareholder value and long-run firm prosperity. In Essentials of Managing Marketing, we explore both the strategic aspects of marketing and the tactical implementation decisions marketers make every day. But first, we investigate two quite different but related meanings of marketing.
Marketing as a Philosophy embraces the view that marketing is the guiding force/orientation for the entire corporation. Firms with a marketing philosophy operate with an external orientation. Such firms focus attention, resources outside the corporation — to acquire, retain, grow customers — but take careful account of a range of external environmental forces.
By contrast, internally oriented firms focus on internal issues — products, services, processes. Essentials of Business Marketing embraces the marketing-as-philosophy perspective. The author believes, and has seen in his own career, how powerful and effective a business can be when the entire organization is attuned to the external world. Such agile firms not only sense critical environmental factors, but also adapt to address them.
Marketers must possess the tools/decision-making skills to get the marketing job done. Effective marketers focus on six marketing imperatives. Marketing Imperatives describe the specifics of the marketing job. For executives with marketing/ product-management titles, these imperatives are the must-dos of marketing.
We identify two groups:
1. Strategic Marketing:
Imperative 1-Determine, recommend which markets to address.
Imperative 2- Identify, target market segments.
Imperative 3- Set strategic direction, positioning.
2. Implementing Market Strategy:
Imperative 1- Design the market offer.
Imperative 2- Secure support from other functions.
Imperative 3- Monitor and control execution/ performance.
To broaden this framework, four marketing principles form the basis for marketing decision-making.
These principles act as guidelines for executing the six imperatives:
Principle 1- Selectivity, Concentration
Principle 2- Customer Value
Principle 3- Differential Advantage
Principle 4- Integration
Marketing is often confused with advertising and sales. Even many executives are unclear. It seems so intuitive; can’t anybody be a marketer? Marketing is the firm’s fundamental activity. When marketing delivers value to satisfy customer needs, the firm attracts, retains, grows customers, in the face of competitors trying to do the same thing. If costs are in line, profits follow. Profits help the firm survive as an independent entity, secure resources to grow, enhance shareholder value.
Business Marketing’s role includes identifying opportunities; figuring out customer needs; understanding competition; developing appealing products/services; communicating/distributing value to potential customers. When the firm does a good job of completing these tasks, shareholder value increases. Example- Flipkart — successful e-commerce firm — co-founder Sachin Bansal emphasizes that focus on customer satisfaction and owning the entire customer experience has benefited his firm.
The critical weapon in the battle for customers is straightforward in concept, but may be complex/ difficult in execution. The firm must deliver customers greater value than competitors deliver. Customers reward such firms by purchasing their products/services, today and tomorrow. This exchange is the basis of all markets.
The late Peter Drucker, preeminent management theorist, is generally credited with developing the customer orientation and modern marketing perspective. Drucker stated, “If we want to know what a business is, we have to start with its purpose. There is only one valid definition of any business purpose — to create a customer. It is the customer who determines what a business is.
For it is the customer, and he alone, who through being willing to pay for a good or service, converts economic resources into wealth, things into goods…. Because it is [the purpose of a business] to create a customer, [the] business enterprise has two — and only these two — basic functions- marketing and innovation.”‘
Business Marketing and Shareholder Value:
The central focus on shareholder value is deeply rooted in many capitalist countries. The shareholder- value perspective defines managements job as maximizing returns for firm owners — shareholders.
In addition to shareholders, the firm has many other stakeholders — management, labor, public at large. In some capitalist countries, these stakeholders are more favored than shareholders. Indeed, in these countries regulations generally favor managers, and protect them from unwelcome mergers/acquisitions. Regardless, in recent years, developing global capital markets have favored the shareholder-value perspective.
Customers are the sole source of firm revenues; all firm activities are costs of attracting, retaining, growing customers. Unfortunately, managers sometimes forget this fundamental truth. Customers provide revenues/cash flow when they believe firm products/services offer better value than competitive alternatives.
Marketing as a Philosophy- External, Internal Orientations:
The firm enhances shareholder value by attracting, retaining, growing customers. At a philosophical level, each employee has some responsibility; marketing is everybody’s business.
To quote Drucker again, “Marketing is so basic that it cannot be considered a separate function within the business … it is, first, a central dimension of the entire business. It is the whole business … seen from the customers point of view. Concern and responsibility for marketing must, therefore, permeate all areas of the enterprise.”
David Haines, former brand czar at Vodafone, echoed Drucker- “Marketing is too important to be left to the marketers. It’s the obligation of every single individual in the company, whether you’re a phone operator, the CEO, or anyone else in the company.” To put it more crassly- If marketing is unsuccessful, nobody gets a paycheck!
Marketing as a philosophy concerns the firms entire orientation; such firms operate with an external orientation. The externally oriented firm looks outward to the environment; it knows that customers are central to its future. Other firms focusing on internal business drivers have one of several internal orientations-, delivering customer value takes a back seat.
i. External Orientation:
The externally oriented firm knows its current products/services/processes are the reasons for past/ present success. This firm also knows that, as the external environment evolves, its products/services/ processes must also change. The externally oriented does not fear change. This firm goes beyond a customer focus; it works hard to understand competitors markets, other environmental forces. This firm invests in new capabilities/competencies to exploit opportunities for attracting, retaining, growing customers. P&G spends over $400 million annually seeking customer/market insight.
In difficult economic times, when profits are under pressure, many firms cut spending/investment; but the externally oriented firm increases investments — human capital, marketing budgets, mergers, acquisitions. Example- In recent recessions, Amazon, Cisco, Coca-Cola, Intel, Tata Consultancy Services invested heavily; they swept past more internally oriented competitors.
Internally oriented firms place internal business considerations ahead of customer focus.
The orientations are:
1. Operations Orientation:
It overemphasizes improving efficiency, reducing costs. There is nothing inherently wrong with such actions; by contrast, cost reduction should not be a priority when the firm offers new products/services, enters new markets, or otherwise should invest to attract, retain, grow customers.
2. Sales Orientation:
It focuses on short-term sales revenues. The firm is less concerned with profits. Characteristic actions to secure sales- Prices set too low, unsustainable discounts, loose credit terms, excessive product variations. The firm spends little effort on marketing research, planning; targets customers indiscriminately.
3. Finance Orientation:
It focuses too heavily on short-term profits. When a firm manages by the numbers, it tends to avoid expenditures for long- term payoff. The finance-oriented firm mortgages its future by indiscriminately cutting back — advertising, capital investment, R&D, talent.
4. Technology Orientation:
It focuses on R&D, but pays insufficient attention to customer value. First- class products are critical for attracting, retaining, growing customers, but for this firm technology is more important than customers.
The job of putting the firms marketing philosophy into practice normally falls to marketing professionals. These people engage in many activities; they must make decisions on how to allocate their time/other resources.
The critical question- Are we doing the right things to attract, retain, grow customers? Put another way- Are we implementing the six marketing imperatives — the firm’s must-dos. Imperatives 1, 2, 3 focus on strategic marketing; imperatives 4, 5, 6 zero in on implementing market strategy.
The firm must answer critical questions about its business, market portfolios:
i. In which new businesses/markets shall we invest — people, time, dollars?
ii. From which businesses/markets shall we withdraw?
iii. In which current businesses/markets shall we continue to invest?
iv. How much investment shall we make in these various businesses/markets?
Marketing plays two key advisory roles. First, identify opportunities. Marketing is the only function with explicit responsibility to focus attention externally on the market, customers, competitors — outside the firm. Marketing personnel should research the environment to identify potential opportunities, then bring these to top management for go/no-go decisions.
Second, advise on proposed strategic actions. Many parts of the firm develop strategic initiatives. Marketing has the responsibility to insert itself into key decisions — collecting, analyzing relevant data — bearing on market entry/exit. Marketing should fully explore the ramifications of potential firm actions, or disaster may ensue.
Marketing must identify market segments — groups of customers with similar needs that value similar benefits with similar priority orders. Once the firm has identified market segments, it must decide which to target for effort. Effective segmentation and targeting are critical for delivering customer value and driving sales, profits.
The firm decides how to compete in those market segments it has targeted. For each target segment, marketing must formulate performance objectives, then decide on firm positioning in each segment — target customers, target competitors, value proposition, reasons to believe. Together with Marketing Imperative 2, positioning completes the STP triumvirate — segmentation, targeting, positioning.
Typically, individual market segments are at different developmental stages; hence they require different approaches. Finally, decisions about strategic direction must include questions about branding. The firm must continually assess strategic direction and make necessary course corrections.
The market offer is the total benefit package the firm provides customers. Tools for designing offers are the most well-known part of marketing.
The marketing-mix elements — aka 4Ps — comprise the basic building blocks:
Generally, the product embodies major benefits the firm offers to satisfy customer needs — these benefits provide customer value. Product comprises both physical products and intangible services.
Embraces various ways the firm communicates with customers — informing, persuading customers to purchase (or recommend) its products. Core promotional elements include mass communications — advertising, publicity & public relations; digital marketing; personal communications — sales force.
Focuses on how, where customers secure the product (aka place).
The firm establishes its feasible price by the equivalent amount of value it offers customers via product, promotion, distribution.
Functional areas must work together to ensure the firm designs and executes the right market offer.
Business marketing requires two very different types of support:
i. Support for design — relates to technical, operational, economic feasibility. This support requires keeping the firm focused on satisfying customer needs and pushing specific functions to encourage evolving their capabilities.
ii. Support for implementation — assumes the firm has agreed upon/fixed the design. Marketers must possess the leadership/interpersonal skills to secure cooperation across multiple functions — internal marketing, getting buy-in.
Is the firm achieving desired results? If results are not on track, what changes should the firm make?
Marketing is a key stakeholder in securing answers to three questions; it should act appropriately based on the answers:
i. Are various functions/departments implementing the market offer?
ii. Is market/financial performance reaching planned objectives?
iii. Based on current environmental realities, are objectives, strategies, implementation plans on track? Should the firm make changes?
Four marketing principles serve as guidelines for executing the six imperatives:
Providing advice on market selection — Imperative 1 — and deciding which market segments to target — Imperative 2 — are among marketing’s primary responsibilities.
Underlying these imperatives is the-
i. Selectivity- Carefully choose targets for firm efforts.
ii. Concentration- Concentrate resources against those targets.
This principle is about choosing the firm’s battles. It is dangerous to dissipate limited resources over too many alternatives by trying to do too much. No organization, no matter how large or how successful, has infinite resources.
Some experts re-label this principle Concentration and Concession. Not only must the firm concentrate resources, it should affirmatively decide where it does not want to compete.
Market success depends on providing value to customers. This principle is central to the marketing job. Customer insight should drive design, implementation of market offers, product/investment decisions, and performance evaluations. The firm develops, produces, delivers products/services, but customers perceive value only in the benefits these products/ services provide.
Customer value is a moving target. As the environment evolves, customers accumulate experience; the needs and benefits they seek evolve also. World-class companies continuously invest in marketing research to probe deeply into customer needs, priorities, expectations, and experiences. They feed these results into the product development process to generate greater value for customers.
Firms that take their eye off the customer ball can get into serious trouble. Shoppers Stop, Aditya Birla Retail, Reliance Retail have closed many unprofitable stores in recent years.
Closely related to the Principle of Customer Value; differential advantage lies at the heart of every successful market strategy —the firm should offer customers something they value, but cannot get elsewhere. Differential advantage is similar to competitive advantage, unique selling proposition, having an edge.
To implement this principle, the firm must develop well-designed market offers, based on the marketing-mix elements, and secure buy-in from other functions.
Offering customer value is not enough. To avoid competitive parity, the firm must offer greater value than competitors. The firm must create/recreate differential advantage to beat competitors.
Some differential advantages are better than others. Differential advantage based on proprietary intellectual property, unique product design, product availability may be more sustainable than differential advantage based on communications.
A differential advantage based on an organizational process like parts delivery, qualified technicians may be even more sustainable.
Competition will eventually erode even the apparently most sustainable differential advantage. Maintaining differential advantage is marketing’s most fundamental challenge; the search for differential advantage must be continuous.
To stay ahead of competition, the firm must be willing to cannibalize its own offers. Many firms will not do so — in part because of strong political constituencies for the status quo; in part because profit margins may be lower. Such unwillingness to act runs the risk of missing opportunities, passing market initiative to a competitor.
v. Differential Advantage and Difference:
A differential advantage is not the same as a difference. Developing a different market offer may not be difficult. Differential advantage must create benefits/values customers recognize, and are willing to pay for.
This principle has two dimensions:
The firm must carefully integrate and coordinate all design and execution elements it offers customers. Poor advertising can ruin an excellent product; delayed promotional materials can doom product launch; improper pricing can cause havoc with sales forecasts.
The firm must carefully integrate/coordinate all internal activities. Different functions/departments must work together; they must avoid squabbles over priorities, turf wars, ambiguous messages by senior managers. Firms with an external orientation are more likely to achieve integration; employees, departments, businesses share a common purpose — serving customers. Sharing responsibility for designing, implementing market offers drives agreement on priorities and close/cooperative working relationships.
Essay on Marketing Topics – 7 (1900 Words)
Marketing refers to a social process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating, offering and exchanging products and services of value freely with others. It is the sum-total of all the activities that facilitate flow of goods and services from producers to the ultimate consumers.
In simple words, marketing involves study and management of exchange relationships. It is used as a tool by business to create the customer, to keep the customer and to satisfy the customer.
Marketing is concerned with all the activities of a company which are associated with buying and selling of a good or a service. It involves activities that aim at making people aware of the company’s goods or services and making sure that these are available to be bought and availed respectively.
Marketers are involved in marketing various types of entities like goods, services, experiences, events, persons, places, properties, organisations, information and ideas. Marketing is an ongoing communication exchange with customers in a way that educates, informs and builds a relationship over time.
It is the process by which a firm profitably translates customers’ needs into revenue. It also involves building a brand and convincing people that a particular brand is the best.
It aims at satisfying the needs and wants of the customers and thereby retaining them for the longest possible period of time. Marketing attracts consumers’ scarce resources, attention and disposable income to derive profitable revenues.
It is the process of getting a product or service from a company to its end-customers from product development through to the final sale and post purchase support.
Essay Topic # 1. Definition of Marketing:
Some Important Definitions of Marketing:
Marketing is the activity, set of institutions and processes for creating, communicating, delivering and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners and society at large. —American Marketing Association (AMA)
Marketing is the science and art of exploring, creating and delivering value to satisfy the needs of a target market at a profit. Marketing identifies unfulfilled needs and desires. If defines, measures and quantifies the size of the identified market and the profit potential. It pinpoints which segments the company is capable of serving best, and it designs and promotes the appropriate products and services. —Philip Kotler
Marketing is a management activity that identifies, anticipates and satisfies customer requirements efficiently and profitably. —Mark Gwilliam
Marketing is the management process for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably. —Chartered Institute of Marketing
Marketing is the business process by which products are matched with the markets and through which transfers of ownership are affected. —F.E.Clark
Marketing is that phase of business activity through which the human wants are satisfied by the exchange of goods and services. — J.F.Pyle
Marketing is the social process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating and exchanging products and value with others. — Philip Kotler
Essay Topic # 2. Nature of Marketing:
(i) Customer Focused – All marketing activities should be customer oriented. They should start with identifying the customer’s needs, followed by developing products, pricing it, promoting it and distributing it as per the customer’s requirements.
(ii) Integrated Process – Being an integrated process, marketing involves coordination of many activities with other business functions like production, personnel, financing, research and development.
(iii) Multi-Disciplinary – Marketing is multi-disciplinary as it has evolved out of commerce and has got its strength from law, psychology, sociology, mathematics and statistics. It is an art as well as a science.
(iv) Interaction with External Environment – It operates within the framework of external environment which comprises of economic, natural, social, legal, political environment etc.
(v) Mutually Beneficial Exchange – It means buyers get want-satisfying goods and sellers get value in exchange of their goods leading to mutual benefit to both the parties.
(vi) Based on System Approach – It is based on system approach as it requires intelligent coordination of four ‘P’s of marketing mix. These are Product, Price, Place and Promotion.
Essay Topic # 3. Importance of Marketing:
(i) It is the beating heart of a business organization – Being the revenue producing department, it is a very important function of management.
(ii) It facilitates creation of place, time and possession utility – As creating these utilities help a marketer to achieve success in the business.
(iii) It helps in improving the standard of living of the people – This is done by offering wide variety of goods and services to the people.
(iv) It generates employment – A large number of people are employed by marketers to carry out various functions of marketing.
(v) It leads to economic development of the nation – It mobilises untapped resources and facilitates full utilisation of production capacity and other assets and hence leads to economic development of the nation.
Essay Topic # 4. Modern Marketing:
Business must find out what the consumers want and then produce goods according to the needs of the consumers. What is offered for sale should be determined by the buyer rather than by the seller. Instead of trying to market (sell) what is easiest for us to make, we must find out much more about what the consumer is willing to buy.
Under consumer-oriented marketing it is highly essential to know what the consumers really want. This is possible only when information is collected from the consumers.
Marketing research and Marketing Information Systems are now-a-days full-fledged functions of marketing. All organisations accept that the marketing activities must start far ahead of production. The company must appreciate and understand the consumers’ strategic position as a determinant of the firm’s survival and growth.
This philosophy of marketing means that the entire marketing is designed to serve consumer needs. The marketing man is introduced at the beginning rather than at the end of the production cycle and marketing is integrated at each phase of the business.
Thus, Marketing, through its studies and research will determine for the engineer, designer and the manufacturing manager, what the consumer wants in a given product, what price he is willing to pay and where and when it will be wanted. The launch of the ‘Nano’, a small car for the common man of India at an affordable price is a glaring example of this statement, i.e., the present day marketing is customer driven.
Marketing is an organizational function which includes a set of processes for creating, communicating and delivering value to customers and for managing customer relationships in ways that benefit the organization and its stakeholders.
By stating definition of marketing itself, it becomes clear that marketing also deals with the creation of a product. It is done by means of proactive marketing, i.e., focussing on customers’ latent needs. For this the process of Marketing Research is applied. These days the companies’ strategies have shifted from “make-and-sell” philosophy to “sense-and-respond” philosophy.
In order to identify the needs of customers various surveys are conducted, pilot studies are done. The respondents are not just prospective customers but also front line executives, since they know a lot about the needs of customers.
At each stage of new product development, marketing has a key role to play.
Marketing after sales – Making a new customer is costlier than retaining an old one. Therefore, it is necessary to keep the customers not only satisfied, but rather delighted. This can be done through customer relationship management, where marketers can offer to provide after sales-services, warranties, guarantees, product resale offers, discounts on next purchase etc.
“Marketing creates value for customers and builds profitable customer relationships and captures value from customers in return.” This statement very aptly describes the essence of marketing in modern scenario. It is a two way process of creating value for customers by offering high quality products in exchange of a price which acts as value from the customers.
It is a mutual beneficial activity where focus is on building and maintaining long-term profitable customer relationships. Today’s successful companies are strongly customer focussed and heavily committed to marketing. They share passion for understanding and satisfying customers’ wants and make a sincere effort to provide solutions by coming out with innovative products.
For example – Procter & Gamble, one of the world’s largest and most respected marketing company creates value for customers by offering innovative products like Tide, Pantene, Gillette, etc. which are widely accepted by customers and in return Procter & Gamble gets rewarded with brand loyal customers.
Similarly, Philips is another company which is always striving to come out with novel solutions for existing problems and produces high quality innovative products like ‘Air Fryer’, ‘Electric Shaver’, etc. They too are rewarded by customers in return with strong loyalty and quick purchases of their products.
The modern marketing concept enunciates that business is essentially a ‘need-satisfying process’ and that any business must be managed keeping the consumer and his needs as the main focus.
All goals of business including profit must be realised through consumer orientation, integrated management action and generation of consumer satisfaction. Matching products with the market implies determining the requirements of potential customers and designing products that satisfy these requirements.
Thus, modern marketing is the integrated process of identification, assessment and satisfaction of human wants. The focus is on the customer and his wants. It is the process of discovering and translating consumer wants into products and services and then in turn making it possible for more and more people to enjoy more and more of these products and services.
Concern for customers’ needs and wants increases the acceptability of the product. When a firm produces the product which meets the requirements of the customers, the need for promotion is reduced. It ensures continuous patronage of customers.
Unification of business activities leads to economy and efficiency in marketing operations. The systems approach to marketing facilitates a rational analysis of all marketing problems along with their effective solutions.
It helps the management to direct organisational effort towards the long-term and wider goals like stability and growth of the firm. Sustained interaction with customers becomes possible.
It is the management orientation that holds that the key task of the organisation is to determine the needs, wants and values of a target market and to adapt the organisation to deliver the desired satisfaction more effectively and efficiently than its competitors.
Thus, modern marketing is an integrated process of identification, assessment and satisfaction of human wants.
The adoption and use of modern marketing concepts have various benefits for any company irrespective of their size, nature or functionality.
Some of the benefits are listed below:
(i) Concern for customers’ needs and wants rather than itself product increases the acceptability of the product.
(ii) Marketing concept requires an integrated and coordinated approach to marketing. Hence all the business activities are focussed towards a single organisational goal.
(iii) Marketing concept is a system approach to marketing. It facilitates a rational analysis of all marketing problems along with their effective solution.
(iv) A business firm pursuing Marketing concept can respond effectively to the changes occurring in the marketing environment.
(v) Marketing concept has a strategic and philosophical value. It helps the management to direct organisational efforts towards long term and wider goals.