What Lies at the Heart of Marketing

Published by MBA Skool Team, Published on November 09, 2014

There have been million books sold and million thoughts shared about marketing. While doing my first year in MBA and having worked in this discipline for a while I have tried to understand the philosophy of marketing from my own perspective and I have realized just like all complex problems have simplest of solutions. Marketing too though appears a webbed and complex knit from the surface though at the crux of it lays a simple desire of a consumer to feel appreciated. And all marketing efforts if kept its focus on ultimately making the consumer feel appreciated by using the particular product then it would lead to a more focused marketing effort.

The need to feel appreciated though at the first sight appears to be quite vague and unrealistic, mostly when we talk about marketing of products in the low price segments. But I would like to draw your attention towards the fact that if you look carefully at what are we trying to do by indulging in price war or by product differentiation or by branding our product? We are only trying to make the consumer feel proud about the product they are about to buy and use. If I buy a detergent packet at the lowest price and it offers the most desirable cleaning effect then I would feel appreciated within a consumer group that I am judicious enough to choose the best value offering product.

Image Courtesy: freedigitalphotos.net, taoty

And talking about marketing in the higher end segment, irrespective of the price the consumer goes for a brand because he wants to associate himself with that particular brand, he want to feel appreciated for being a proud owner of that particular product. He does not really care much about the quality but does care about his image and the logo of the brand.

At the heart of marketing philosophy lies the fact make your consumers feel valued, appreciated and being cared for. If I feel like buying a product, primarily it is not only for the features that the product offers because in today’s competitive environment there is a miniscule difference in the quality of product being offered, that is why marketing as a function becomes much more important for companies to help differentiate their products. Coming up with an all new product involves years of R&D and huge amount of investment in technology, but revamping the feel of a product and building a better image for it is something which is much more easier and involves less of investment. This was why marketing become so important and why the right type of marketing which strikes at the right nerve of the consumer is much more important.

Traditionally marketing has been misunderstood and it has all been used to build upon the ultimate product and ultimate product feature which can woo the consumer but what has been missing is that for a marketer your consumers should be important to you not the product. If you make your product a king and place it at the center of your marketing effort and keep on talking about it again and again that what a perfect marble it is, you are very innocently loosing on your consumers. Because they don’t not feel important and connected to your product. They understand that may be the product is just too good and too awesome but would not end up buying it. Because they do not feel appreciated after buying it, they do not feel that the company cares about them and the most important feeling of connect is missing. The focus of marketing effort has recently started to shift more towards consumers and their needs and building up content for them. For example why Vodafone has the puppy which follows you everywhere or why AirTel came up with the concept of hare ek friend zaroori hota hai , because they understood the needs of the consumer, and that  the way down the glittery road is to shift the power center from your product to the consumer. Make him feel more and more important, the better you do it, the better marketer you are. All said and done maintaining the quality of product and services goes without saying, and you just cannot afford to ignore it. Because marketing is something which will help you build up the icing on the cake, but for a perfect icing the cake should be well baked. For you can fool a consumer once but never again.

I have tried to present my views as a marketer and what as per me is the current trend among marketers and how they are vying to strike a chord with the consumer. More and more focused marketing effort on the secret need of a poorest to poor consumer feel appreciated is emerging as a megatrend in the marketing discipline.

This article has been authored by Shruti Soumya from MDI, Gurgaon

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