How to Use Marketing Concepts to Solve Marketing Problems
Marketing is a big word that strikes fear into the hearts of most marketers. Fear of making a fool of one’s self, of being thought a fool by one’s competitors and of being branded a pompous ass by his or her customers. However marketing is not exactly that big a word and does not have to be scary to make money in the market. Indeed marketing is a vital element of any effective sales strategy, as without it sales would come to a screeching halt.
The real test of the selling concept comes when you sell your ideas to a willing customer. In fact it is much better if you never sell anything at all – your only concern should be researching your market and finding out what questions they are asking. Once you know this you can answer those questions and develop a marketing plan that targets answers those questions. Marketing research is the tool of the successful marketer. It is a tool that helps you to find more customers, it helps you to develop your selling concept and to learn more about the customers you are trying to serve.
Marketers must be cognizant of marketing myopia which is viewing their product concept from too narrow a view. Most marketers are deeply invested in the idea of providing only the best to their customers. If they are selling low-end products they will resist marketing innovations that go against that grain. The product concept that they hold dear will be seriously threatened if they are perceived as trying to sell anything to anyone.
Marketers must not let marketing myopia stop them from pursuing a truly coordinated marketing approach. There are many organizations that have been around for decades that recognize the need to focus on customers needs first and then build a marketing strategy around those needs. In addition, there are many examples of truly effective coordinated marketing strategies that have proven to be very successful, like Wal-mart and K-Mart.
Marketing myopia is a danger because it prevents marketers from seeing their product as part of a larger marketing strategy. A good marketing concept will allow you to see your product as a part of the solution to a particular problem that consumers are solving. This way you can be sure that marketing is providing you with an answer to a problem and not trying to place a solution on the consumer. Many companies have recognized this concept and have incorporated it into their marketing strategy. For example, Pepsi would never position themselves as a beverage company selling soda when they understood that the bulk of their profit came from selling their gum.
The bottom line is that the most effective marketing concepts will take into consideration how the product will fit into the overall solution. Marketing myopia forces marketers to think in terms of selling a product and not how it will fit into a wider marketing plan. Properly implemented marketing management concepts will take into account how each marketing concept fits into the marketing plan and how they will work together to solve the marketing problem. A social marketing management plan focused on consumers as the primary focus and implementing marketing concepts that improve the quality of social marketing will help marketers realize their goals. In the long run, the strategy will yield greater results for the company than any other marketing concepts.