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What is Marketing? Purpose, Types and Career Opportunities
When it comes to defining marketing or answering ‘what is marketing’, a definition might not be helpful as the term marketing is a bit variable and all-encompassing for a straightforward definition. Nonetheless, Hubspot defines marketing as ‘actions a business takes for attracting an audience to the business’s products or services using high-quality messaging. Marketing aims at delivering standalone value for consumers and prospects through content, with the long-term goal of strengthening brand loyalty, demonstrating product value, and increasing sales.
Every business’s success largely depends on the type of marketing strategy they deploy as marketing is present across all the stages of businesses, from beginning to end. It is essential for businesses to conduct extensive research, know their target audience well, make a comprehensive sales and marketing plan and choose the marketing channels wisely.
Moreover, considering the changing marketing dynamics and the soaring difficulty to convince consumers to buy a particular product or service, conventional marketing strategies may lose their significance soon and the vacuum will be filled by technologically advanced marketing strategies.
The Purpose of Marketing
Marketing involves a business’s different aspects, such as product development, advertising, sales, and distribution methods. The key purpose of marketing is to get people interested in the products or services of a company. This happens through market analysis, research, and contemplating the interest of a business’s ideal customers and attracting them through messaging which would be educational and helpful to a business’s target group. In turn, this would also help businesses convert a higher number of leads into customers.
Though it may seem unbelievable, modern marketing began back in the 1950s. It was the time when people started to use platforms and channels beyond print media to endorse their products. Then, as television and soon, the internet entered households, the marketers were able to conduct entire campaigns spanning multiple platforms. This eventually increased the importance of marketers to fine-tune how businesses sell products or services to customers while optimizing their success.
Currently, there is a myriad of platforms where marketers can carry out sales and marketing campaigns. Let’s take a look at the types of marketing relevant and efficacious in the 21st century.
Types of Marketing
- Internet Marketing – The idea of establishing an online presence for your business
- Search Engine Optimization– The process of optimizing the content of a website so that it appears in the top results of Search Engine Result Pages
- Blog Marketing– Brands write and publish blogs about their industry to nurture potential customers’ interest who browse the internet to get information
- Social Media Marketing– Using social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram for creating impressions on their audience over a period of time.
- Print Marketing– For some people, newspapers, and magazines still work the best. This is the reason businesses are continuing to sponsor photography, articles, and content similar to what their customers are reading in the publications
- Search Engine Marketing– This is a little different from SEO. Businesses can pay search engines a price to place their links in one of the top results to get better exposure.
- Video Marketing – Creating videos that educate and entertain customers and increase their engagement.
Additionally, marketing in the 21st century is highly dependent on clear and practical strategies to reach as well as engage with target markets in the evolving world. Professional marketers develop different types of marketing strategies with strong knowledge and practical experience in personalized marketing, globalization, technological shifts, new consumer trends, and pricing strategies. If you also want to excel in new-age and versatile marketing, you can explore online marketing courses such as Digital Marketing and Analytics and others from globally reputed institutes and give your career a kickstart or upskill yourself.
Marketing and Advertising: Are They Different or the Same?
The terms marketing and advertising are different yet related. Advertising is just an aspect of marketing. While advertising is ideally a paid way of messaging which is designed to convert leads into sales, marketing is the comprehensive approach to speaking with the customers about the brand. Advertising is that part of marketing that involves making the brand known to people by getting the word around about the business’s products or services to your target audience. It can also be a short-term thing for a special ongoing or promotion.
In contrast, marketing management is the process of systematically planning, implementing, and controlling a mix of activities for bringing buyers and sellers together. This is for mutually advantageous transfer or exchange of products or services. Usually, marketing begins with a USP (Unique selling proposition) – a short, effective, and compelling sentence describing your business. This message helps you in finding your target group, helping you streamline your marketing strategies, and use your resources, time, and money optimally.
Conclusively, marketing is a wider concept that can be divided into advertising, market research, media planning, community relations, public relations, sales strategy, and customer support.
The 4 Ps, 7 Ps, and 4 Cs of Marketing
4 Ps are the four main elements of the marketing process that marketers largely consider for streamlining their efforts and gaining overall success:
- Product – It is important for marketers to know the product in and out and the features that differentiate it from the competing products.
- Price – As price decisions determine demand, supply, and marketing strategy type, the brands and products may have to be positioned differently in the market on the basis of their price point.
- Place – Marketing is largely about making the products available in the right place at right time, making it critical to research, analyze and evaluate the ideal locations for placing your products to convert your leads into customers.
- Promotion – To make people aware of what you are selling and how is it different, elements like social media marketing, advertising, email marketing, public relations, and so on.
Additionally, three more Ps make your chosen marketing strategy type even more effective:
- People – This includes both customers and employees in context to how they work together for creating an excellent experience. It is crucial to provide excellent customer service to build your brand’s positive reputation.
- Process – It is the flow of the process in which your services or products are delivered. This is largely focused on the customer experience.
- Physical Evidence – It is the environment in which the experience takes place. It can be a physical store or an e-commerce store. While being a place where the service or product is distributed, it is also a place where the customers and employees interact.
While this marketing approach worked well for many businesses, Robert F. Lauterborn- comprised the 4 Cs approach as an alternative to the 4 Ps to make it more customer-centric.
- Consumer Wants and Needs – It is about performing extensive research to ensure that a particular product or service meets the demands of your customers. If it doesn’t, keep adapting and modifying until it does.
- Costs – Cost replaced ‘Price’ of 4Ps as Robert F. Lauterborn believed that it’s not just the price of the product that matters, consumers may incur other types of costs too while buying the product.
- Convenience – It replaced the word ‘Place’ from the 4Ps. Convenience emphasizes on the significance of availability and accessibility of products to the consumers. Precisely, marketers should have several points of visibility for the products.
- Communication – This emphasizes open communication between the consumer and the brand, in contrast to the conventional marketing methods which focus on highlighting just the qualities of products.
Irrespective of whichever approach the marketer takes – 4 Ps, 7 Ps, or 4 Cs, it is important for you to know that it is the beginning point when you are bringing your offerings to the market.
Marketing Expert – Promising Career Opportunity
Marketing is here to stay for an unforeseeable period, or until all the businesses across the globe shut down their operations. Therefore, building your career and exploring opportunities in marketing will help you grow personally and professionally.
With Emeritus, you can explore short-term marketing courses, degree programs, professional certificates, and other executive programs online as well as in person from globally renowned universities and schools such as Kellogg Executive Education, Columbia Business Schol, London Business School, and others. Regardless of your age and availability of time, you can pursue different sales and marketing courses online to upskill.
While marketing is all about identifying, satisfying, and retaining customers for all businesses, the strategies that one adopts will prove to be the game changer and make the competition fierce. So, gear up and start your journey to become a versatile marketer today.