What is Marketing?

 Introduction to Marketing

There are different standard marketing definitions. Although the words used are different, it is obvious that any marketing activity concerns the customer, targeted to acquire and retain them.

Marketing is a commercial function and a series of processes involved in the creation, supply and communication of worth to customers, followed by the management of customer relations, resulting in a mutual benefit for companies and its stakeholders.

Marketing is also a science of choosing a target market through market analysis and segmentation, with comprehensive knowledge of purchase behavior, aiming to provide the best customer value.

However, marketing is only successful when the organization's mission, vision, task, and the ability to utilize the technology parallel to complement each other, and the overall business.

Although marketing is seen as a company's success indicator, it is solely a perspective.

For example, brands like Toyota, ford, coca cola and Nestle must depend on marketing to grow and maintaineir customer base. For industries that are arranged such as utilities and medical care and small businesses with unique products, marketing may be low key and limited to flyers.

Basic Marketing Concept

Marketing provides companies with a competitive advantage because it is what they need to find devoted customers.

Companies succeed by convincing potential customers that their product is the closest thing that satisfies their wishes and desires, and do that consistently, with the result that the loyal customer starts to buy from them without looking at the competition.

This is the goal of all companies, and it is only possible with a solid marketing plan in place.

With the advent of the Internet, several marketing channels are available for companies, in addition to traditional marketing. All of which focus on customer engagement.

Types of Marketing

Traditional marketing 

involves offline channels such as face-to-face selling, print advertisements, direct mails, billboards, television and radio

Digital marketing 

uses the internet to reach its markets via websites, social media, video sites, emails, mobile phones and apps and forums.

Social media marketing

Marketing on social networks is a popular medium so that companies connect with and engage their customers. This works better when used in conjunction with other marketing strategies.

Mobile marketing

It is considered one of the main marketing channels today, what with customers getting their information on the go.

Whatever route the marketer decides to take, two or more of the above inevitably overlap to offer customers the best marketing experience since the goal is to reach customers where they are rather than waiting for their approach.

Marketing functional areas

Marketing is a diverse domain. The structure and organization of a marketing team may vary depending on several factors, including the industry, the size of the company, and unique organizational needs. A small startup may only require one dedicated marketing professional, while a multinational can have hundreds.
Regardless of how it is organized, a marketing team is usually responsible for the following functions:
  • Advertising

  • Brand marketing

  • Channel marketing

  • Communicationsi

  • Content marketing

  • Digital marketing

  • Email marketing

  • Media relations and PR

  • Partner marketing

  • Product marketing

  • Search engine marketing

  • Social media marketing

Marketing responsibilities

Responsibilities may vary considerably depending on the role and type of each organization. But most marketing roles share some common focus points. In general, these are:
  • Defining the marketing strategy

  • Conducting market research

  • Performing competitive differentiation

  • Crafting positioning and messaging

  • Building marketing roadmaps

  • Generating leads

  • Running A/B tests

  • Optimizing landing pages

  • Communicating with customers

  • Preparing for product launches

  • Cultivating press and analyst relations

  • Raising brand awareness

How marketing works

The first thing in this process is to establish a marketing philosophy, where the company must perform customer needs analysis to find ways to meet these needs.

It is important to remember that markets are dynamic and continue to change, while the marketing concept has also evolved to keep up with the market's pace.

Marketing Concepts Evolution

Here is a brief overview of the evolution of marketing concepts.

Production concept

The concept of production is a concept operations-based, where the customer expects products that are readily available and affordable. In this, companies focus on the efficiency of production, cost reduction, and mass distribution. This concept works in the development of economies where the need is more for the product than the features it offers (ei: bread, kitchen oil ...).

Product concept

It is a customer-oriented concept, where consumers expect  their products to be of superior quality, high performance, and unique features. This concept assumes that customers are more likely to be loyal when the product meets all their expectations. In here, the company strives to offer innovative products consistently (ei: appel, samsung ...).

Selling concept

The concept of sale is where the company believes that its products will only sell by active promotion and that the customer will not respond til pushed. In short, it's a question of the company that tries to sell what it creates rather than making products to meet the needs of the market (ei: chinese products...).

Marketing concept

This concept is radical, compared to what we saw above, and focuses on the target market, needs and desires, and wishes to be superior to the competition while offering value to its market. Unlike previous concepts that rely on push marketing, it believes in pull marketing by branding (ei: netflix, banks...).

Although the selling concept is oriented on the seller, the marketing concept is focused on the buyer.

Today, a fifth concept had evolved.

Societal marketing concept

This is the ideal situation where, along with the focus on the wishes and market needs of the target and providing better value than its competitors, the business is also trying to preserve the welfare of the target market and the community as a whole. This takes into consideration the environmental and natural resources and minimize carbon footprint (ei: Tesla...).

Marketing and Selling

We often use marketing and selling synonymously. However, it is essential to understand the differences between marketing and selling for any marketing plan to be efficient.

Simply, "selling" is a product/seller-oriented and aims for market share and maximizing profits. The company assumes that customers are waiting for its products, and after production is over, the sales force must sell everything using aggressive sales methods.

On the other hand, the marketing approach focuses on the buyer. It includes a broader range of activities that include the entire process of:

  • Market research to uncover customer needs,
  • Product planning and development –to make products that meet and satisfy customer needs.
  • Packaging, advertising and promotion – to create awareness and for brand-building
  • Pricing and distribution –for long term revenue generation.
In short, despite the purpose of marketing and selling is to increase income, marketing aims to create value for customers and sees customers as a reason for its existence. This requires a marketing plan based on the business specific needs.

The Marketing Plan

Marketing plan is a blueprint for the company's success and will include:

  • An executive summary to highlight what the marketing plan hopes to achieve with strategies it plans to use, budget requirements and a system for measuring results.
  • An overview of the business with a description of its services and products and their USPs. This includes indirect and direct competition analysis, SWOT analysis describing product/service mix, pricing, location and positioning.
  • Target market identification, potential customers and marketing territory with customer demographics and all relevant information, market segmentation to enable the business customize its marketing strategy,
  • Marketing goals including sales and market share anticipated for the next three years.
  • Marketing strategies for product/service mix, pricing, promotion, location and positioning.
  • Action plan for implementation of each marketing strategy with detailed descriptions, timelines and identifying those accountable for achieving them.
  • Budget and sales forecasts with expense budget for task implementation with sales forecast figures expected from the marketing plan with rationale.
  • Monitoring and evaluation of results with criteria for success of the marketing plan and how its success will be measured to identify what is working so that changes can be made to meet desired goals.
  • Any other information relevant to the marketing plan.
Of course, the marketing plan is far more detailed than this outline and is prepared by considering its impact on the business, the risks involved, and other specific aspects of said business.


Marketing is much more than promoting and selling products to a target market. It focuses on the enlargement of the customer base. The more information a company has, the more its marketing and its activities are likely to be successful.

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