What Is Marketing?
Marketing refers to activities a company undertakes to promote the buying or selling of a product or service. Marketing includes advertising, selling, and delivering products to consumers or other businesses. Some marketing is done by affiliates on behalf of a company.
Professionals who work in a corporation’s marketing and promotion departments seek to get the attention of key potential audiences through advertising. Promotions are targeted to certain audiences and may involve celebrity endorsements, catchy phrases or slogans, memorable packaging or graphic designs and overall media exposure.
Marketing as a discipline involves all the actions a company undertakes to draw in customers and maintain relationships with them. Networking with potential or past clients is part of the work too, and may include writing thank you emails, playing golf with prospective clients, returning calls and emails quickly, and meeting with clients for coffee or a meal.
At its most basic level, marketing seeks to match a company’s products and services to customers who want access to those products. Matching products to customers ultimately ensures profitability.
Product, price, place, and promotion are the Four Ps of marketing. The Four Ps collectively make up the essential mix a company needs to market a product or service. Neil Borden popularized the idea of the marketing mix and the concept of the Four Ps in the 1950s.
Marketing is the process of intentionally stimulating demand for and purchases of goods and services; potentially including selection of a target audience; selection of certain attributes or themes to emphasize in advertising; operation of advertising campaigns; attendance at trade shows and public events; design of products and packaging to be more attractive to buyers; selection of the terms of sale, such as price, discounts, warranty, and return policy; product placement in media or with people believed to influence the buying habits of others; agreements with retailers, wholesale distributors, or resellers; and attempts to create awareness of, loyalty to, and positive feelings about a brand. Marketing is typically conducted by the seller, typically a retailer or manufacturer. Sometimes tasks are contracted to a dedicated marketing firm or advertising agency. More rarely, a trade association or government agency (such as the Agricultural Marketing Service) advertises on behalf of an entire industry or locality, often a specific type of food (e.g. Got Milk?), food from a specific area, or a city or region as a tourism destination.
It is one of the primary components of business management and commerce. Marketers can direct their product to other businesses (B2B marketing) or directly to consumers (B2C marketing). Regardless of who is being marketed to, several factors apply, including the perspective the marketers will use. Known as market orientations, they determine how marketers will approach the planning stage of marketing.
The marketing mix, which outlines the specifics of the product and how it will be sold, is affected by the environment surrounding the product, the results of marketing research and market research, and the characteristics of the product’s target market. Once these factors are determined, marketers must then decide what methods will be used to promote the product, including use of coupons and other price inducements.
The term marketing, what is commonly known as attracting customers, incorporates knowledge gained by studying the management of exchange relationships and is the business process of identifying, anticipating and satisfying customers’ needs and wants.