Sunday, January 15, 2006

Article: "Marketing takes on a new meaning"

Marketing takes on a new meaning
TheStar Online Sunday January 15, 2006

THE vital role played by marketing has been consistently recognised ever since industries commenced producing goods and services for the end-users, i.e. consumers.

According to Drucker (1991), marketing is so basic that it cannot be considered a separate or independent function. Instead, marketing involves seeing the whole business from the perspective of so-called “final” results viz. the customer’s point of view.

In other words, business success is not determined by the producer but by the customer.

WIDER MARKET: Internet marketing has opened up boundaries between trading countries. In our increasingly competitive business world, the importance and benefits of marketing to organisational performance has been greatly emphasised as marketing now becomes more critical to the continuous survival and growth of companies.


The term “marketing” was derived from its original form of the vulgar Latin “marcatus”, which means to trade or buying/selling goods in market.

Even though marketing has been defined and conceptualised in various means, the definition propounded by the American Marketing Association (1995) that marketing is “the performance of business activities that direct the flow of goods and services from producer to consumer or user” serves a general purpose.

Nevertheless, over the years other aspects have been augmented to this basic definition to reflect current developments in marketing.

According to Kotler (1997), marketing is typically seen as the task of creating, promoting and delivering goods and services to consumers and businesses; it is defined as a societal 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. Thus, marketing is based on the following key concepts:

# Needs, wants and demand;

# Products (goods and services);

# Value, cost and satisfaction;

# Exchange and transactions;

# Relationships and networks;

# Markets; and

# Marketers and prospects.

It can be said that all marketing begins with the needs of human beings, which relate to items that satisfy needs in one way or another.

On the other hand, wants are specific items that satisfy those needs.

A further step is when human beings have a demand for certain items, which constitutes the ability and willingness to purchase them. Products (goods and services) refer to items that people use to satisfy their needs or wants. Products are actually bought in view of the service or satisfaction that it offers.

In deciding what or which product (whether goods or services) to purchase, it is vital for the customer to decide on the value of the product that is capable of satisfying his needs.

In wanting to possess such a product, he has to pay a price (cost). Hence, in making a decision to purchase an item, the customer will consider both the value and the price. After he has decided on the product he wants, it can then be procured via the process of exchange or transactions.

Relationship marketing

As a result of this exchange process, what has occurred is relationship marketing, i.e. establishing long-term preferences. This will eventually establish what is often known as the “marketing network”, which is the sum total of all the supporting activities of a company.

The setting up of a marketing network brings us to the concept of the market, which is deemed as the existence of all potential customers who need to fulfil a need or a want and who might be willing to do an exchange to satisfy their need or want.

Finally, from the establishment of markets, we proceed to marketers and prospects – those who are actively looking for an exchange and those who are willing and able to engage in an exchange of values. Therefore, the whole process, which incorporates the various activities mentioned above, constitutes what is commonly known as “marketing”.

Marketing concepts: past and present

According to Kotler (1997), the development of marketing concepts encompasses the following stages in a chronological order:

# The production concept is regarded as one of the oldest concepts in business. This concept views that consumers will be attracted to products that are widely available and low in cost.

# The product concept recognises that customers will be attracted to products that offer the best quality, performance or innovative features.

# The selling concept is based on the proposition that customers if left alone will not purchase enough of the organisation’s products. A company must thus carry out aggressive selling and promotion efforts.

# The marketing concept emerged in the mid 1950s. Basically, this philosophy aims at attaining corporate goals via satisfying and exceeding customer needs better than the competitors.

It is important to note that there is significant difference between the selling and marketing concepts. According to Levitt (1960), selling is focused on the needs of the seller, while marketing focuses on the needs of the buyer.

Thus selling is preoccupied with the seller’s need to convert the product into cash, marketing with the idea of satisfying the needs of the customer by means of the product and the whole cluster of things associated with creating, delivering and finally consuming it.

In addition, Drucker (1993) also differentiates selling from marketing by stating, “There will always, one can assume, be a need for some selling. But the aim of marketing is not make (sic) selling superfluous. The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well that the product or service fits him and sells by itself.”.

# The societal marketing concept holds that the organisation’s task is to determine the needs, wants and interests of target markets and to deliver the desired satisfaction more effectively and efficiently than competitors in a way that preserves or enhances the consumer’s and society’s well-being.

# The relationship marketing concept is defined as “getting to know your customers (clients, public, etc.) better so you can meet their wants and needs better”.

Future marketing prospects

The advancement and proliferation of information technology and the wide availability and accessibility of computers and their connectivity has not only opened up boundaries between trading countries but also unlocked the door of each home that has a computer.

The PC has become a symbol of egalitarianism and individualism. Moreover, the constant churning out of new technology is slowly creating a totally new human environment.

In light of this new development, Internet marketing will become more and more important in future. The Internet can be applied by companies as an integral part of the Internet marketing concept because of the following factors:

# It can be used to support the full range of organisational functions and processes that deliver products and services to customers and other key stakeholders;

# It is a powerful communications medium that can act as a “corporate glue” which integrates the different functional parts of the organisation;

# It facilitates information management which is now increasingly recognised as a critical marketing support tool to strategy formulation and implementation; and

# The future role of the Internet should constitute part of the vision of a company since its future impact will be critical to most businesses.

The author, a Malaysian, is a visiting professor of Zhongshan University, Guangzhou, China and CEO of Oriental Strategy Research Centre. He can be contacted at

ps. the original article can be found here

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

4Ps of Marketing

The 4Ps of Marketing are:
  1. Product
  2. Price
  3. Place
  4. Promotion

Definition of Marketing by Webster's

"1. The act of buying and selling in the market. 2. All business activity involved in the moving of goods from the producer to the consumer, including selling, advertising, packaging, etc."
- Webster's Definition

Definition of Marketing by Philip Kotler ("Marketing Management")

"Marketing is the set of human activities directed at facilitating and consummating exchanges."
- Philip Kotler ("Marketing Management")

Monday, January 09, 2006

Definition of Marketing by the American Marketing Association (AMA)

".. the performance of business activities that direct the flow of goods and services from producer to consumer or user."
- American Marketing Association (AMA)

Definition of Marketing by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), UK

"Marketing is the management process responsible for identifying, satisfying and anticipating customer requirements profitably."
- The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), UK

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Marketing-Guru Blog

The Marketing-Guru blog is a blog about Marketing.

This blog is all about the fundamentals of Marketing. It is about what Marketing is all about. It is about what Marketing really is. Without all the hypes so common nowadays.

This blog will also answer some commonly or frequently-asked-questions (FAQs) such as:
  • What is Marketing?
  • What are the definitions of Marketing by different experts and sources?
  • What is the difference between Marketing and Sales?
  • Why have the majority of people confused Marketing with Sales?
  • What does Marketing cover?
  • When & where does Marketing start and when & where does it end?
  • How to make the best of the internet (worldwideweb) to enhance your Marketing strategies.
  • Who are the most successful Marketers in the world?
  • Which are the established companies in the world that have successfully used Marketing to build and expand their businesses to what they are today?
  • What are the short-term or long-term Marketing courses that one can attend to equipt himself / herself with necessary fundamentals of Marketing and also uptodate knowlege?
  • What are the best Marketing courses to take for beginners. Which are the best executive development courses suitable for professional marketers to further enhance their knowledge and expertice?
  • Which are the best Certificate courses for Marketing? Which are the best Diploma courses for Marketing? Which are the best Bachelor's Degree (BA Bachelor of Art, BSc Bachelor of Science, BBA Bachelor of Business Administration, etc.) for Marketing? Where can you take a good Master's Degree (MA Master of Art, MSc Master of Science, MBA Master of Business Administration, etc.) on Marketing? What about Marketing Doctorates (PhD Philosopher Doctor, DBA Doctor of Business Administration, etc.)?
  • What professional organisations are there for professional Marketers?