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8/11/2015

MBA Notes - Definition and Meaning of Marketing

Question - What is marketing? Define and explain marketing on the basis of different approaches. 

Answer

Marketing is the performance of business activities directed toward, and incident to, the flow of goods and services from producer to consumer or user.
Introduction
In today's world of marketing, everywhere you go you are being marketed to in one form or another. Marketing is with you each second of your walking life. From morning to night you are exposed to thousands of marketing messages everyday. Marketing is something that affects you even though you may not necessarily be conscious of it.

After reading this you'll understand - what exactly the marketing is, different definitions of marketing, and what are the different approaches of marketing.

Definition and Meaning of Marketing
According to American Marketing Association (1948) - "Marketing is the performance of business activities directed toward, and incident to, the flow of goods and services from producer to consumer or user."

AMA (1960) - "Marketing is the performance of business activities that direct the flow of goods and services from producer to consumer or user."

The above definitions are based on the economic approach of marketing. Marketing embraces all the business activities involved in getting goods and services , from the hands of producers into the hands of final consumers. The business steps through which goods progress on their way to final consumers is the concern of marketing.

Consumer's Approach of Marketing
According to Star et al. (1977) - "Marketing is that process through which a business enterprise, institution, or organisation 1. selects target customers or constituents, 2. assesses the needs or wants of such target customers, and 3. manages its resources to satisfy those customer needs or wants."

The above definition is based on the consumer's approach of marketing. According to this approach marketing consists of four general activities:-
  1. Identifying and selecting the type of  customer, understanding their needs and desires;
  2. Designing product or services that suits the customers' desires;
  3. Persuading customers to buy at the firm's offerings; and
  4. Storing, moving, and displaying goods after they leave the production site.
Societal Approach of Marketing
According to Mazur (1947) - "Marketing is the delivery of a standard of living to society."

This definition is based on the societal approach of marketing. According to Cunningham and Cunningham (1981) societal marketing performs three essential functions:-
  1. Knowing and understanding the consumer's changing needs and wants;
  2. Efficiently and effectively managing the supply and demand of products and services; and
  3. Efficient provision of distribution and payment processing systems.
Managerial or Systems Approach
According to Eldridge (1970) - "Marketing is the combination of activities designed to produce profit through ascertaining, creating, stimulating, and satisfying the needs and/or wants of a selected segment of the market."

The above definition is based on the managerial or systems approach of marketing. According to this approach the emphasis is on how the individual organisation processes marketing and develops the strategic dimensions of marketing activities.

A Broader Approach of Marketing
According to Kotler (2000) - "A societal process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating, offering, and freely exchanging products and services of value with others."

According to AMA (2004) - "Marketing is an organisational function and set of processes for creating, communicating and delivering value to customers and for managing relationships in a way that benefits both the organisation and the stakeholder."

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