Although some marketing practices are as old as the earliest trades, some refers that marketing concept have its roots from the Industrial Revolution (around 1750 in United Kingdom, and then in 1830 in United States and Germany) (Fahy 2015 p.3) which other claims otherwise; from the late XIX/early XX century with the evolvement of mass market in United States (Baker and Saren 2010 p.4; Powell 1910 in Ludicke 2006 p.3; Ludicke 2006 p.3; O’Shaughnessy 1990 p. 3). Indeed, as began to surface a strong competitivity between small local farmers to reach the larger market distribution against institutionalized entities during the production era (Ludicke 2006 p.3), marketing has since then become a subject of undergoing intense study (Powell 1910, Butler 1917 et al in Ludicke 2006 p.3), reexamined and revised over the course of time coinciding with economic growth, technology development and society changes as marketing had been observed to be relevant to it transformations (Baker and Saren 2010 p.4, Sweeney 1972 p.3, Kotler 1999 p.1). The study of marketing extended its nature, scope (now counting; goods, services, experiences, events, persons, places, properties, organizations, information and ideas) and functions (pricing, sales management, retailing, advertising, marketing research, wholesale management, distribution management, product development, packaging, marketing management, retail management, consumer behavior, international marketing, brand equity, customer service and public relations and many more) (O’Shaughnessy 1990 p. 3; Kotler 1999 p.13; hunt 2010 p.55), building complexity to its meaning, enveloping now however, a rich and diverse concepts and tools, all to aid marketers to determine and establish the best marketing process and decision to reach organization’s objectives (Kotler 1999 p.3-4).
Today, marketing can be distinguished from two different perspectives; (1) marketing as a managerial function (2) marketing as a societal process (Kotler 1999 p.4, Ohio State University 1965 in Hunt 2010 p.8). Although both are directed to benefit and reach organization’s goals, marketing had been observed to have a major role and impact to the society in which it is practiced (Lazer 1969 in Hunt 2010 p.8; Sweeney 1972 p.3).
In contrast, marketing had been for a long time referred as an “art of selling products” (in Kotler 1999 p.4) even more so that is needed or wanted (Drucker 1973 in Kotler 1999 p.4). Indeed, as it origins indicates, marketing can be referred as a business discipline (in Kotler and Zaltman 1971 p.4) for profit-oriented organizations focused on business activities (American Marketing Association 1985 in Hunt p.8) for the greatest purpose of making profit/generating revenue, carried out through market transaction (physical place) (Luck 1969 in Hunt 2010 p.8-9, Kotler 1999 p.4) taking place in the physical place called “market” (referenced today as “marketplace”) (Kotler 1999 p.4), involving the exchange of money, goods and/or services between a producer/seller and buyer (in Kotler and Zaltman 1971 p.4). Thus, marketing envelops several concepts, among others being (1) production concept; established through a mass, inexpensive and efficient production of goods or services distributed in a large-scale (2) product concept; focused on creating best quality and innovative products/services on the market and improved them overtime (3) selling concept; focus on creating sales transactions through using aggressive promotion tools strategies (Kotler 1999 p.11-12).
However, over time and more precisely in the 60’s, marketing had been observed to be practiced and beneficial as well for nonbusiness/nonprofit oriented organizations (Kotler and Levy 1969 in Hunt 2010 p.8), thereby, marketing could no longer be defined solely through activities of transportation, buying and selling (Lavidge 1970 in Hunt 2010 p.9) for ultimate goal and concern of market transaction. Although some had been resilient to extend marketing concept from fear that it could bring further irrelevancy and unpracticality for marketing practitioners (Luck 1969 in Hunt p.9), other found reason that marketing should be defined in a more inclusive way (Kotler 1972 in Hunt 2010 p.9-10).
Doubtlessly, as marketing action and theory’s core essence remain as “exchange” (Lüdicke 2006 p.6), “exchange process” and “transaction” (Kotler and Zaltman 1971 p.4; Newman 1993 p.8) or “transfer” (Kotler 1999 p.7), this one commented therefore to lie on “general idea of exchange” (Kotler and Levy 1969 in Hunt 2010 p.9) and of “value” (Kotler 1972 in Hunt 2010 p.9-10) intended to satisfy both the organization and individual (Kotler 1999 p.4).
Indeed, in United States where subsistence level exceeded, social and cultural conditions changes, and environment consciousness appeared; raised the importance to focus on the before neglected consumer investment for the sake of the organization’s survival (Dawson 1971 p.67) as many had been concerned if “… these children of affluence grow up to be consumers on quite the same economy-moving scale of their parents?” – Zalaznick (1969 in Dawson 1971 p.67). In the buyer/receiver point of view, value and satisfaction are perceived differently from one individual to another, in this context, the target buyer calculates the level of value throughout comparing what he gives (cost such as; money, psychic, time, energy) and what he gets (benefits such as; functional or emotional) (Kotler 1999 p.6).
On the basis of the last foregoing, the exchange being a process (Kotler 1999 p.7) must be therefore primarily “concerned with how transactions are created, stimulated, facilitated, and valued” (Kotler 1972 in Hunt 2010 p.9-10) as this crucial analysis increase chances that the exchange will take place (Kotler 1999 p.7). This is when marketing management comes into greater play, performing an essential instrument to marketing and business operational tasks, helping to reach organization’s goals and lower significantly financial and investment risk that organizations take whenever they introduce a new product/service in the market (Kotler and Zaltman 1971 p.4). Defined as: “analyzing, planning, implementation and control of program designed to bring about desired exchange with target audiences for the purpose of personal or mutual gain… relies heavily on adaptation and coordination of product, price, promotion and place for achieving effective response” (in Kotler and Zaltman 1971 p. 4), marketing management revolves around constructing a set of optimal marketing efficient and effective decisions (tactical and strategic) determined and aided through marketing research and market research for organization long-term growth, remaining competitive in the dynamic and competitive world and markets, considering therefore all forever changing macroenvironment/broad environment forces (demographic, economic, natural, technological, political-legal and social-cultural environments) and microenvironment/task environment forces (these one influences by broad environment forces, consist of all players who affect organization’s ability to produce, distribute and promote) (Kolter 1999 p.9), pursuing to influence the level, timing, and composition of demand (negative demand, no demand, latent demand, declining demand, irregular demand, full demand, overfull demand, unwholesome demand) (Kotler 1999 p.1-3), ideally growing a strong and satisfied customer base, by way of delivering better value to its target market and segment (identified through various criteria such as such as socio-demographic, geographical, psychographic, behavioral criteria), to obtain a desire effective response (attention, a vote, donation, a purchase) from prospects (potential consumers and/or those that recently expressed an interest or intent to purchase) (Kotler 1999 p.4-5): “We see marketing management as the art and science of applying core marketing concepts to choose target markets and get, keep, and grow customers through creating, delivering, and communicating superior customer value.” (Kotler 1999 p.4).
Further, the exchange process had been expressed to be only feasible when both or more involved parties have each/are “something to exchange and able to carry communication and distribution” (Kotler and Zaltman 1971 p.4). Indeed, organizations can reach target market through different types of marketing channels (communication, dialogue and monologue channels) (Kotler 1999 p.8) and which after being effective, the buyer/donator, sends simultaneously and besides money; crucial indicative information (Kotler 1999 p.4) (Table 1: A Simple Marketing System). As consequence, the buyer is perceived as the market and seller as the industry (Kotler 1999 p.4).
Table 1: A Simple Marketing System
Source: Kotler 1999 p.5
These exchange of information helps continuously capture the constant changing customer’s needs, wants and demand as well as their preferences and opinion, assessing customer value (desired and perceived value) to develop more suitable product offering and market offering for the right target buyers, delivering therefore greater personal value and so increasing customer’s satisfaction better so than the competition to acquire costumers and more importantly retain them (Sellers 1986 in Kotler 1999 p.12-13). For that and especially in today’s contemporary marketing practices, it is essential to develop a long-term satisfying customer relation (as well with other key exchange parties) to retain and repeat business with them (Kotler 1999 p.7).
Further adjacent to marketing management, appeared consequently another and further developed-dominant marketing concept: (4) marketing concept. Contractionary to the selling concept, although still pursuing profitability and/or organizations objectives (commercial and non-commercial), this one aim to do so by using a customer-orientated and market orientation approach ingrained in the business philosophy of the organization for the reason that organization’s source of income comes from both acquired costumers (customer attraction) and most importantly loyal once (customer retention) (Sellers 1986 in Kotler 1999 p.12-13): “Selling focuses on the needs of the seller; marketing on the needs of the buyer. Selling is preoccupied with the seller’s need to convert his product into cash; marketing with the idea of satisfying the needs of the customer” (Levitt 1960 in Kotler 1999 p.12) by “creating, delivering, and communicating customer value to its chosen target markets” (Kotler 1999 p.17) better so than the competitors. This result for some authors to define marketing’s essence as “the establishment of mutually satisfying exchange relationships” (Baker and Saren 2010 p.3). As it is believed that each profession in the organization play a role and affect costumer’s entire experience, influencing his/her attitude and level of satisfaction, organizations that use its business orientation must apply therefore an integrated marketing strategy; that is for all marketing functions (grasped within its respective department throughout diverse occupations, professions and practices (Hunt 2010 p.55)) to work seamlessly and coordinately with the organization’s philosophy, represented as well by all other departments (Kotler 1999 p.13). For that, organization might use external and internal marketing tactics to foster it teamwork (Kotler 1999 p.13). Organization that truly imply costumer-orientation as their business philosophy, rotates the traditional company’s organization at 90-degree; putting customers on top followed by employees having direct contact with them (Kotler 1999 p.13).
With the raised question by Zalaznick mentioned above due to significant increase of conscious consumerism (social, environmental, value) (Dawson 1971 p.67-68) brought no other choice for many organizations and marketers to compel and adjust with these changes throughout their practices (Dawson 1971 p.67-68), consequently resulting marketing to recognize its societal dimensions (Lazer 1969 in Hunt 2010 p.8) and therefore legitimately justified to be viewed as a social process (Ohio State University 1965 in Hunt 2010 p.8). Preceding to that, many authors criticized organizations using marketing business orientation to serve consumer on the expense of the society well-being (Kotler 1999 p.14). This movement opened up to develop a total new marketing concept; (5) societal marketing concept, defined as “a societal process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating, offering, and exchanging products and services of value freely with others.” (Kotler 1999 p.4). This concept although laying on one of the same core ideas than marketing one, call marketers to serve as well the long-term interests of the society (or at least to preserve it): “They (marketers) must balance and juggle the often-conflicting criteria of company profits, consumer want satisfaction, and public interest.” Kottler (1999 p.14).