Definition Of Marketing
So, what is the true definition of marketing? I've seen it best described as “the management process through which goods and services move from concept to the customer’. Fair enough, I hear you say, but much lies behind this simple statement.
If your business is to succeed then you need a marketing plan built into your overall business plan. Another definition of marketing could be that without it you won’t have any customers, thus no sales and no business. You may have the best product but unless the right people know about it you will be ‘dead in the water’.
Market Research should be the launch pad of your marketing activity. No.1 on the ‘To Do’ list on your marketing plan. M.R. should cover two main elements. On: Customers; Two: Competition. And not necessarily in that order. Many people, especially those starting up a business from scratch, make the mistake of thinking marketing is all about the methodology of acquiring customers and forget all about what the competition is up to. Competition watching is an ongoing activity. Never take your eyes off it. Remember that ‘whilst you are thinking about, someone else is probably doing it’. Make certain that you are constantly aware of what is happening around you. Supermarkets are particularly good at this. Visit your local Tesco or Walmart. Note the price comparisons they all make with their competitors. This is the sharp end of marketing. Why pay more elsewhere, they are saying subliminally.
Successful marketing revolves around One: Promoting your product(s) or service(s); Two: Promoting your brand name. I’m sure we can all think of examples where a brand name supersedes the product. Instantly I can think of:
- VIRGIN - airline, trains, books, weddings, communications, perfume etc.
- M&S - department stores, retail food outlets, café etc.
These two organisations (and many others like them) have worked hard (and spent a lot of money) on ‘brand recognition’. They have built up trust. “Whatever we do we do well”. Trust the brand, trust the product.
Lest we forget Virgin started off as a record company (with that famous story of how a young man’s instrumental concept album launched a multi-billion pound business – not to mention a lifelong successful recording artist. Lord Sugar’s Amstrad is also a good example of trading off a recognised brand name. He started by building computers and ended up making satellite dishes for Sky.
There is no doubt that money breads money and realistically you need deep pockets (or access to them) to create a nation (let alone a global) brand. But fear not for there is hope for the smaller businessman. Technology and communications of the 21st century have come to your aid and spreading the word about you, your business and its product(s) or service(s) is far easier now than it once was.
Having now understood the ‘Definition of Marketing’ and having read my piece on ‘What is Marketing’, it is now time to move; put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard and make inroads into producing a market plan.
The First Steps In Your Market Planning Strategy
Definitions Of Marketing
Preparing Your Small Business Marketing Plan
Small Business Marketing Plans Stage 2
Small Business Marketing Strategy
Direct Business Marketing Plan
Sample Marketing Plan – SWOT Analysis
Marketing Plan Example For Price And Brand Positioning
Outlining For Budgets
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