Marketing Planet

Marketing: the essentials

Everyone talks very easily about marketing but you might just wonder what is in fact the main idea behind it all. This article will give you a clear definition on what marketing is about.

How to put Marketing in a simple way? Or should I rather say, how to help you see the main issue in marketing when people are always discussing about a variety of terms wheras you are already lost right from the start.

I once had to explain marketing to a high school student, and I started with asking him what he thought what was marketing all about. "About selling someone something he wants", he said. I think this in a way reflects the basic point on marketing. All marketing aims to do in a company is to find out what the customer wants and then organise the sales process in a way that the customer buys it.

The main points are:

  • understand what your customer wants
  • be able to create this product
  • manage to sell the product:

It all sounds very simple but unfortunately, the reality is a little less obvious and many people tend to over complicate things, maybe to look more smart.

- 1/ Understand what your customer wants:
You need to know your customer, what he wants, what he needs and what he is willing to pay and to do to obtain the product he wants.
There is no possibility to sell a product for a price too high or sell a product no one wants to have. A case study is the famous story of "Bic Perfume": Bic, from the famous lighters, wanted to increase its product line by selling perfume in the same style. Same style meant: good quality products but cheap and as a take away product. All went fine and the market tests were very promising. However it became a flop. Why? To make a long story short: perfume is a luxury product wrapped in a world of dreams. It is the dreams and the luxury that people want to buy too when they buy perfume. Bic, by taking off the image of luxury and the world of dreams, killed in fact the perfume itself, it had become an ugly product and lost all its mystery.

For more details on this part I advice you to go to the part of Market Study.

- 2/ Be able to create this product:
If you did a market study and it appears that your customers are no longer satisfied with your product and are looking for a substitute it can be time for you to change too before it might be too late. However, if your customers want a product you cannot offer and cannot possibly produce you will have to find a solution. Or you will have to learn how to produce this product, but this is very risky since you change business, or you will have to change your target customer. Here you see there is a problem of adjusting the product to your target, which means directly the positioning of your product.

Positioning is a main issue in marketing and will therefor be developed in the part of Positioning.

- 3/ Manage to sell the product:
(In other words: put the product in a place where the customer can find it and that he understand that this is the product he wants.) Let’s state that you have the right target customer and that you have the corresponding product that he wants. All seems to be good. But be aware! You know you have this product but your customer doesn’t know it yet. You have to make yourself and your product known to your customer. How do you do that, how do you reach him, what do you have to tell him, how to convince him of buying your product and not the competitors one?

You see the problem, all this is about communication, it is in fact the same type of communication as you will have to use in real live to distinguish yourself from others. Some people do succeed where others lack, though they have the same qualities. It is just the one who sells / communicates better on himself that will win, it is about the way you do it.

You see, marketing covers a lot even though its essentials are very simple. It is therefor very important to keep in mind these 3 main aspects, whether you know or not the underlying theorie, let them be your red line.