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The Marketplace

The term "marketing" relates to the concept of a marketplace. In simplest of terms, this is where people would come to exchange goods and services for something of perceived equal value. I might have wool from my sheep, and you might be the weaver. Fancy that: the original small business owner. I would have to raise my sheep, sheer them (or pay others to do this), sell the wool for a fair price, and then use the money to keep up production.

A marketer's role was (and is!) blended heavily with that of the seller. The part of the job that is "marketing" is understanding how to present your product or service as the best possible value for the buyer. What separates you, if anything, from the other shepherds? Are your sheep bred from better stock? Do you provide wool with fewer snarls and imperfections? Are you just faster or more reliable?

But we've forgotten something. I'm speaking as if there's a market established, as if you know where to take your wool, and who to see about buying it. I'm speaking as if you know how to talk with the right person and how to assess the best possible price. And what if the market moves? Or what if another shepherd with more sheep comes and can offer a discount, or credit? Heck, credit used to be one of the most powerful marketing tools around (still is).

Marketing isn't worrying about what to tweet. Marketing is everything listed above. Only, there are new tools and methods. And if you are choosing to ignore them, the marketplace is moving somewhere else and you're in the old square, wondering why fewer people are buying your wool.
Dawn Mentzer's profile photoChris Brogan's profile photoSuzanne Doughty's profile photoKaren Dietz's profile photo
Thank you! I was starting to think basic business rules were changed and I hibernated whole change away.
Drucker said it best I think: "The aim of marketing is to make selling superfluous. [It] ... is to know and understand the customer so well that the product or service fits him and sells itself. Ideally, marketing should result in a customer who is ready to buy."

Hence Marketing and Innovation goes hand in hand...
Looking forward to hearing about more of them.
I have to disagree. with +Jan Hemmingsen. None of famous four P's of marketing (not even "hip" 7 P's) have statement of customer in it. Marketing's main goal was, is and always will be - creation of buzz, or awareness. Customer relationship makes the sale and marketing will never be part of customer relationship just because it can't focus on individual pawn on chess board if you know what I mean.
+Man M what are these P's you mention? The customer relationship is 100% of what marketing strategies is all about. It really depends on what scale are you focused on? Buzz and awareness sound a bit cliché, I'm just thinking out of the box here. Customers have absolutely everything to do with marketing techniques and selling your product.
Marketing initiates the customer experience with brand promises, it continues with content marketing and nurturing that generate scoring to identify specific individuals that then receive targeted messaging launched from Outlook, it provides individual conversations. Marketing and sales that are not engaged in the customer relationship and customer experience are inconceivable. The four P's are a thing of the past. That's what makes marketing today so incredibly exciting.
+Dale Wolf - do you think they had brand promises 2000 years ago? I'd say yes. What do you think?
+Chris Brogan and let's not forget, modern branding started with The Virginia Company. (and yes, they made promises)
+Darrell Hudson, you won't see me buying anything from bill board or ad on the web unless I click with people I meet when I walk into a place ad advertised (and something tells me you won't too). Just like "marketers" won't ever sell anything to anyone pushing offers from their "strategies" rather than peoples' needs. These days when marketing is soaked into social solution businesses tend to get lost in redefining who's doing what. Take a look at +Lexus USA they have marketing>social>customer care embedded in their philosophy. You see the add- get interested> you check what's soaking in in social life- think "hm, they seem to have be responsive and transparent with their "accelerator issues"> you walk into dealership- bam! I feel papered, but not in a "butt licking" way> I buy. That's just rough example of how random guy is transformed into customer.
Marketing, sales, customer relationships, business longevity -- it's all about connections and having a solution to a problem that someone is searching for an answer to. Using all media, tools and opportunities available. I think that's the heart of it.
Great post Chris! Marketing made simple...
Well said, +Karen Dietz! And +Chris Brogan, I like how you took us back to the basics. It's easy to lose sight of what's at the core of marketing because it's become so complex.
It's sad/amazing how many inferior products have come to dominate the marketplace just because they dominate the path to the marketplace (i.e., distribution). I'm thinking PC vs Mac, DVR vs Tivo, Budweiser vs any other beer. Can you think of others?
+Suzanne Doughty - you're 1000000000% right. Distribution is a very powerful lever. Love your thinking on this.
Thanks, +Chris Brogan I always enjoy reading your stuff - reckon I should comment more... Oh yeah, I was going to add VHS vs Betamax, but that would have been dating myself. :)
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