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Defining Marketing Paper

Billy W. Denbow


Gary Solomon

January 29, 2007

Defining Marketing Paper

The American Marketing Association defines marketing as " an organizational function and a set of processes for creating, communicating, and delivering value to customers and for managing customer relationships in ways that benefit the organization and its stakeholders" (American Marketing Association, 2007). According to Randall Chapman, The World Marketing Association also has a definition, different, but equally as accurate and good. The WMA states that "marketing is the core business philosophy which directs the processes of identifying and fulfilling the needs of individuals and organizations through exchanges which create superior value for all parties" (Chapman, 2003).

I particularly like using both of these definitions together because I believe that each of them covers a very important part of what I believe marketing is that the other definition did not point out. The AMA makes mention here of satisfying the goals of an individual or company through marketing; the WMA on the other hand, mentions that marketing seeks to achieve value for both sides, the consumer and the organization that created the marketing. I like this because this definition illustrates very clearly that marketing must fulfill the needs of both sides to a transaction.

I believe marketing can be defined as a combination of these two statements. My personal definition of marketing is as follows. Marketing is the process of identifying and implementing steps to obtain the attention of a specified target market, thus establishing the desire for a good or service with the goal of earning and retaining consumer business at a positive value for buyer and seller.

There is no doubt that marketing is extremely vital to the success of any organization. "Marketing is the most important business function that many companies ignore and/or under utilize. The most successful businesses in a free market economy are those that have a well defined, strong marketing organization" (Focus Associates, 2007). Marketing has gone beyond the days of expecting customers to purchase a product just because it is the lowest price. We now live in a market-directed economic system; the consumers and producers will determine which direction marketing must go to be successful. There are too many other factors involved in today's economy that will direct customers toward or away from a company's products or services. Product features, accessibility, durability, brand name, benefits of efficiency, ease or difficulty of use, and company reputation are all examples of features that consumers consider in addition to price when making a buy decision. This is not a complete list; just several examples of what a marketing department must take into consideration when developing their marketing plan which should ultimately seek to obtain customers and achieve value and customer satisfaction.

The successful company will employ a marketing department who not only understands this, but who will also carry out their daily and long term plans and efforts in accordance with finding the right balance to meet these needs of the consumer. Today's company must grasp a marketing concept in order to expect significant results. Without this, any company is setting itself up for failure before long.

Let's look at some examples of how marketing has proved to be important in the success in the real world. First we will look at a two major companies, and the third example will be marketing online.

For years, McDonalds has used Ronald McDonald to appeal to children. They offer a character, a birthday party location, and playgrounds. McDonalds has had plenty of opportunities to market successfully to children, which bring the parents in as well. McDonald's has used the golden arches symbol to create brand recognition in consumer minds. Throughout its marketing efforts, McDonalds has used this symbol so that when we see it, we think McDonalds. The goal of McDonalds is that we will then crave its food. Commercials and billboards will showcase the arches as well as cheap food prices and features to attract children.

Over recent years, McDonalds has had to find a balance in their marketing efforts to meet changing needs of our society. As people have become more aware of food ingredients and calorie intake, McDonalds has made changes to their menus to include salads, chicken, and healthy alternatives in addition to the items for which the food chain is well known. Had they ignored this fact, they stood a chance of losing a part of the market they had already spent billions of dollars over the years to retain.

By doing so, McDonalds still offers a product that is desirable at locations nearly everywhere


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