What is Marketing?

Definitions of marketing

There are many definitions of marketing. The better definitions are focused upon customer orientation and the satisfaction of customer needs.

Marketing is the social process by which individuals and organizations obtain what they need and want through creating and exchanging value with others.

Kotler and Armstrong (2010).

The definiton is based upon an a basic marketing exchange process, and recognises the importance of value to the customer.

The process by which companies create value for customers and build strong customer relationships in order to capture value from customers in return.

Kotler and Armstrong (2010).

Kotler and Armstrong develop their orginal definition to recognise the importance of the longer-term relationship with the customer. This is achieved by relationship marketing and Customer Relationship Management (CRM).

Marketing is the management process for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably.

The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM). Accessed 2012.

The CIM definition looks not only at identifying customer needs, but also satisfying them (short-term) and anticipating them in the future (long-term retention). The definition also states the importance of a process of marketing, with marketing objectives and outcomes. CIM is recognised as being one of the most influential marketing bodies in the world. It is the professional body for marketing in the United Kingdom.

Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large. (Approved October 2007)

American Marketing Association Board of Directors. Accessed 2012.

Again, in common with Kotler and Armstrong above, the AMA focuses its definition on value creation and delivery, and the longer-term retained customer.

The enigma of marketing is that it is one of man's oldest activities and yet it is regarded as the most recent of business disciplines.

Baker (1976).

Baker introduces the elephant in the room. Marketing has always been part of business, and it is a myth that it is purely a contemporary idea.

Also see the Philosophy and Theory of Marketing

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