Marketing for the twenty-first century

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Change is occurring at an accelerating rate; today is not like yesterday, and tomorrow will be different from today. Continuing today’s strategy is risky; so is turningto a new strategy. Therefore, tomorrow’s successful companies will have to heed three certainties:

➤ Global forces will continue to affect everyone’s business and personal life.

➤ Technology will continue to advance and amaze us.

➤ There will be a continuing push toward deregulation of the economic sector.

These three developments—globalization, technological advances, and deregulation—spell endless opportunities. But what is marketing and what does it have to dowith these issues?Marketing deals with identifying and meeting human and social needs. One ofthe shortest definitions of marketing is “meeting needs profitably.” Whether the marketer is Procter & Gamble, which notices that people feel overweight and want tastybut less fatty food and invents Olestra; or CarMax, which notes that people want morecertainty when they buy a used automobile and invents a new system for selling usedcars; or IKEA, which notices that people want good furniture at a substantially lowerprice and creates knock-down furniture—all illustrate a drive to turn a private or socialneed into a profitable business opportunity through marketing.MARKETING TASKSA recent book, Radical Marketing, praises companies such as Harley-Davidson for succeeding by breaking all of the rules of marketing.1Instead of commissioning expensivemarketing research, spending huge sums on advertising, and operating large market-1

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