Marketing has been defined by dictionary.com as an activity which involves the promotion or selling of a product. This activity will also include advertising and research.
In case you are like me who handles marketing on a daily basis, you may not be able to give it a comprehensive definition – it is a term which seems to contain too many variables thereby making it very hard to be comprehensively defined. This makes a definition that is straightforward hard to put together. This is a definition that doesn’t sound helpful.
For instance, the aspect that talks about selling makes it sound like sales is being defined. Also, advertising as used in the definition, is something that makes me think of the brainstorming sessions from the show Mad Men.
However, once I was able to dig deeper, I began to notice that marketing also has to do with sales and advertising. That is to say, you can’t talk about it without these 2 concepts being mentioned. Marketing seems to be an activity that is present in every stage of a business – from its beginning to the ending.
I was initially surprised by why marketing was an important component in the process of product development, retail distribution or even writing a sales pitch. However, everything begins to make sense once you start thinking about it from the perspective that marketers have got a very vital role to play on your consumer persona’s pulse. They are always analyzing customers and researching them to know more about their behavior patterns. They also send out surveys, observe shopping habits online and conduct focus groups. They ask the various questions about where, when and how consumers can communicate with a business.
What Then Is Marketing?
Marketing involves a series of activity that you carry out to get people interested in whatever product that you are selling. It has to do with having to stir up their interest through some calculated moves and targeted strategies. Activities of marketing take place via research, analysis, as well as having a perfect understanding about the diverse needs of your target audience. Marketing encompasses every activity or aspect in business. These could be development of products, methods through which they will be distributed, advertising, and sales.
The roles of marketers with regards to how a company or business will get its products to end-users can hardly be overemphasized. They have a very important part to play for any product that is going to be successful.
The Difference Between Marketing and Advertising
If marketing has been considered to be a wheel, then it is safe to say that advertising makes up part of such wheel. Marketing involves processes such as research, product development, sales strategy, distribution of product, customer support and sales relation. It is very important in every stage of a company’s selling process.
Advertising on the other hand, happens to be only a component of marketing. This implies that it is a part of marketing and without the latter; it wouldn’t exist in the first place. It is a series of strategies that have been put in place for the selling of a product. These are paid strategies or methods aimed at creating awareness about a product.
4ps of Marketing
The concept of 4ps in marketing was brought into existence by E Jerome McCarthy during the 1960s. These are promotion, place, price and product. What these components do try to explain is how marketing interact or communicate with every stage in a business.
Let us assume that you want to introduce a product to be sold to end-users. You will struggle if your plan is just to start selling. Rather, you will need to meet your team of marketers to carry out some series of research in order to ensure that critical questions are answered. Some of the issues that need to be addressed will be about your target audience, whether there is an existing market that will need such a product, through what means will product sales be increased, how can the product be modified or tweaked to ensure that its chance of success is high and what focus groups are thinking regarding such product.
Through the answers provided for such issues, marketers can know the extent to which there is going to be demand for a product. They will know how to improve the product’s quality through having to look at the responses from focus groups.
Your team of marketers will check out what competitors are offering for price of products being sold. They can also make use of survey and focus groups to understand the amount customers will be willing to pay for such a product. Your customer base will be adversely affected once your price is high. Conversely, once price is low, your profit may be affected. It is all about trying to strike a balance. The perfect price range is arrived through having to gauge consumer analysis and industry research.
It is very vital your team of marketers understand the best place where the product needs to be sold. It is possible they consider ecommerce site to be more preferable than retail location or the other way round. They will also need to offer professional pieces of advice on locations that will bring about more sales either on the international platform or locally.
Promotion encompasses how a product is being advertised. This could be either offline or online. Your team of marketers will have the role of steering the interest of members of the public about such a product. It goes beyond having to create awareness about the existence of a product. There are methods that you will likely see in a stage like this such as social media promotions, public relation campaigns and advertisements.
Hopefully, the way that the 4ps have been explained will help you have a much better and in depth understanding about what marketing entails. Marketing is an activity that you will find in every stage of a business. This is why it is a concept which you must understand properly to ensure that your sales increase beyond what they are.
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