What is Marketing?
Marketing is the art and process of building, managing and maintain an exchange relationship; where you start with attract the customers, establishing a relationship with them, and finally maintaining it by satisfying their needs.
That customer can be other businesses or the consumers; therefore, marketing can be business to business or business to consumer depending upon the situation. The ultimate function of the marketing is the same, and that is to establish a relationship with customers and satisfy their needs by meeting their demands.
For instance, telecommunication companies first attract and convince people to use their calls, messaging and internet packages. Once people start using, then they ask them to rate their service by giving them stars.
What are the Marketing Concepts?
The marketing concept is a process when a company plans and implements to maximize profit by increasing sales, satisfying customer’s needs and beating competitors. The purpose is to create a situation that benefits both parties; customer and the company.
The idea of the marketing concept is to anticipate and satisfy the needs and wants of customers better than the competitors. The marketing concept was originally derived from the book of Adam Smith, Wealth of Nation. It remained unknown to the world until the 21st century.
To fully understand the marketing concept, first, we have to understand needs, wants and demands;
- Needs – it is something necessary for the existence of life, many adverse things can happen without it. The worst-case scenario would be death. Needs comprises of many things; like food, shelter, security, social belonging, self-development, self-esteem, and respect.
- Wants – wants are our wishes and desires that what we want in life, our social setup and culture shape our wants.
- Demands – when our wishes, needs, and wants are backed by our capability to pay, then they become demands.
5 Marketing Concepts
There are as many marketing concepts as many businesses running in the world. Some of those concepts exist today and the others have become obsolete. However, there are five core marketing concepts which are as follows;
The production concept is one of the earliest marketing concepts where the company focuses on the efficiency of its production processes. It is to produce the products cheaper to make it available to the mass population. The focus of the production concept is on the quantity, not the quality of the products.
Production concept started in the mid of 1950s, and it follows the Says Law. It states that supply creates demand in the market. According to this law, when a business manufactures a product, then it doesn’t need to advertise its products, it would sell itself.
The law became popular is because it was at a time when there was no technology and media, and people used to travel less. Salesman in the shop used to be the only seller, and there were few manufacturers in the market. There used to be a limited variety of products in the market, whatever comes in the market, and then it would have been sold.
The core idea of the product concept is to produce cheaper products because the customers won’t pay much price for the products or services. The companies that follow the product concept, manufacture the product on a mass scale and they make a profit out of the economies of the scale.
When businesses produce low-cost products, then they follow a vast distribution strategy to reach more audiences. By targeting more people, they can increase their productivity by expanding their market.
In the product concept, marketers do not give any importance to the needs and wants of the customers. Their main focus is to produce more and more product, quantity matters, not the quality. Customers are usually unsatisfied with the poor quality of the products.
The product concept was famous at a time when there was no competition in the market, whatever you bring in the market, people would take it. Ford was the first vehicle company; it started delivering more vehicles in the market. People bought it because it was the only product available at the time.
As the name implies the idea of selling concept is to sell the company’s product through large scale marketing and promotional activities, it doesn’t whether they fulfill customers’ needs or not.
The focus of the management in this approach is to complete the transaction of sale; they think that their job is done once they sell their product. Instead of building and maintaining a long terms relationship with the customer, so the customer would come back again.
Sale concept is a very risky strategy because it’s based on a very weak notion that the company should sell whatever they’re producing, instead of meeting customer’s demands.
In this strategy, marketers think that if customers don’t like the company’s product, then they’ll buy something else and forget about their old shopping experience. The whole idea of sale concept is based on the false assumption, that the customers don’t remember their past shopping experience.
Blood donations and insurance policies fall in the category of sale concept, where the marketer thinks that their job is done after completing the transaction.
The marketing concept is customer-oriented. It puts customers in the middle of the marketing process, finding out customers’ needs and wants, then satisfying those needs better than the competitors.
In this approach, the marketer says that the customer is always right and his needs and wants should come first. Companies make a profit by meeting the needs and wants of customers.
It follows a very simple strategy that marketers do not look for the right customers of their product; instead, they produce the right product for their customers. Marketers try to bridge the gap between the customers and the company’s products.
When you compare the marketing concept with the sale concept, then you find a huge difference between both of these strategies. It won’t be wrong if you say that these two strategies at two opposite extreme poles.
Societal Marketing Concept
The idea of the societal marketing concept is based on the welfare of the whole society because it questions the strategy of the marketing concept. What customers want, it doesn’t mean that it would be good for them in the long term. What you want, and what is good for you and society as a whole, are two completely different things.
For instance, we all like sweet, spicy and fast foods. We all want the same things whenever we go out, but it doesn’t mean that it’s good for our health as well, and the health of the whole society.
The purpose and aim of the societal marketing concept is to make companies realize that they have a social and environmental responsibility, and that’s much bigger than their short terms sales and profit goals. Companies should produce and operate towards a sustainable future for the whole society, companies are a part of the society and they should behave like one.
Production, product, and sale concept have become obsolete in most of the fields; they only exist in some fields only. Today’s market follows the marketing concept of meeting and fulfilling customers’ needs and wants, but environmental challenges are questioning the whole strategy of the marketing concept. The societal marketing concept is right to some extent that what’s good for an individual and good for the whole society are completely different things. Marketer should keep in mind the societal and environmental factors as well because there won’t be any business activity without society. Therefore, society’s needs should come first.