The word ” Marketing ” is often used in two senses . According to traditional sense, marketing means transactions related to sale and purchase of goods . In other words, marketing means activities concerned with approaching of the goods from producers to consumers . Under this, purchase, storage, grading, advertising, transportation, price determination, etc . are included .
According to the modern sense, meaning of marketing is understood in a wider form . Marketing function starts before the production of goods and continues even after sales . Before starting the production of goods, the estimates of requirement of goods by the consumers are made by analysing the market completely . After estimating this, product planning is done for making the goods available according to the interest and demand of consumers . After production of goods and its availability to the consumers, it is checked under after sale services whether consumers are satisfied with the product or not .
In this way, this function continues and efforts are made to make the product to the requirement of consumers by making improvement in it . Thus, modern marketing activities start before actual production and continue even after sale of the products .
Nature Of Marketing
(A) Nature of Marketing in the Form of Science and Art
(1) Marketing as an Art : Practical use of any knowledge is called art.Decision making related to marketing is an art because in the absence of experience, decision process cannot be transformed in pre-determined structure merely on the basis of principles of marketing i.e. inspite of good knowledge of principles of marketing, decision-making process cannot be effective without experience. Thus, for bringing the principles into practice experience, skills and practice are alse required due to which it is called art.
(2)Marketing as a Science : In modern times, marketing cannot be completely called a science. Its main reason is slow speed of growth of marketing. Marketing has attained facts, principles, techniques and thoughts at scale from social and practical sciences like maths but despite of it, all these cannot be presented in a collective form so that a universal principle can be developed. It is negative point of view in the context of marketing. For removing this weakness, efforts are being made for making marketing as a science.
(B) Nature of Marketing in the Form of Various Approaches
(1) Marketing as Distribution Approach: It is the traditional and narrow concept of marketing. Under it, the activities related to transmitting the goods and services from producer to consumer like transportation, warehousing, grading, sales, etc. are included. This concept of marketing was given importance in ancient times but in modern times, it has lost its importance. The following are the weaknesses of this approach:
- This approach is based on this assumption that whatever of goods and products are manufactured by the producers, those are accepted by the consumers.
- Under it, marketing function begins after producing the goods and ends with the sale of goods to the consumers.
(2) Marketing as Revenue Generating Approach : This approach is or firm oriented. Under this approach of marketing, all the activities related to income generation are included. In fact, success of an cannot be evaluated without revenue achievement. Without it, the existence of business becomes endangered. Thus, for earning income, it is necessary that more production should be done on less cost.
(3) Marketing as Functional Approach: This approach of marketing studies the activities concerning the goods from production center to consumers like sale-purchase, price determination, branding, packaging, advertisement, transportation, finance, after sales service, etc. Above activities of marketing have no limit rather number of activities are decided according to the nature and requirements of the business. In short, this approach avoids the repetition of activities and analyses the problems which arise in the accomplishment of activities.
(4) Marketing as System Approach : According to this approach, marketing includes all those activities which start before production and continue even after sales. On the basis of this approach, organisation gets the opportunities for getting the information related to marketing opportunities, law, competitive behaviours, buying behaviours, etc.
Scope Of Marketing
(I) Managerial Functions
Managerial functions refer to those activities which are performed by the marketing manager. Under it, the following functions are included:
(1) Determining the Objectives – Marketing manager firstly determines the objectives of marketing because these objectives are the important central point of other activities of marketing. Objectives to be determined should be clear and specific. These objectives can be of both types i.e. short term or long term. These objectives should be communicated to all the other departments of organisation so that these can be achieved easily.
(2) Planning – After determining the objectives of marketing, planning of marketing activities is done for the achievement of these objectives. Under this, it is considered that which good or product is to be produced, what improvements are required to be made in it every year, in which areas the product is to be sold, which distribution medium is to be used, etc. While planning for marketing activities, a detailed plan is made in relation to size of product, design, price, interest of consumers, etc.
(3) Organising – For the efficiency of marketing activities, it is necessary that all the people engaged in an activity should be organised in such a way that wastage and repetition may be reduced. Through market planning, it is known that which activities are to be performed and which posts are to be determined for performing these activities. Organisation is determined according to the size and need of firm. In small firms, marketing functions are performed by the top managers themselves while in large organisations marketing functions are performed by marketing managers under which separate departments are established for different activities
(4) Staffing – Under staffing, marketing manager performs the activities like appointment, recruitment, training, wage determination of salesmen, etc. For this, methods of human resource management are adopted.
(5) Directing – The functions performed by the appointed workers determine the success of marketing and organisation. So, marketing manager appoints skilled workers on the vacant posts. A marketing manager at different levels also gives necessary directions to employees for motivating them for work. Marketing manager also has to tell the employees at different times about what to do, when to do, where to do and how to do. Marketing manager also gives necessary directions to the employees for the solution of problems arisen while marketing.
(6) Coordination – Marketing manager establishes coordination between marketing department and other departments of the organisation so that the whole activities run on uninterruptedly for the fulfillment of organisational objectives.
(7) Controlling – Changes in market situations, changes in interest and demand of consumers, changes in economic policies of country, etc. also create hindrance in marketing plans. These hindrances can be removed by effective control. Marketing manager should make the timely inspection of different marketing activities and if errors are found in these, then marketing plan should be made successful by making necessary improvements.
(II) Functional Functions
Those activities are included under functional functions which are performed for transmitting the produced goods from the production centre to consumer centre by the marketing manager. The following functions are included under it:
(1) Marketing Research – In modern times, research has become an important function of marketing. Marketing research refers to careful and deep study of the form, market situation, consumer behaviour, powers of competitive firms, promotional activities, etc. Through marketing research, interests and requirements of prospective consumers are ascertained and goods and services are supplied according to these. Through marketing research it is known that what, when, where and in what amount the goods are required.
(2) Product Planning and Development – In modern marketing concept, consumer satisfaction is considered above all. Thus, by knowing the requirements of consumers, new products are developed and changes are made in the existing products through product planning according to the changed attitude, interest and desires of consumers. In this way, it is an important function of marketing.
(3) Financing – Finance is like life blood for all the economic activities. For a business organisation, finance is required to maintain adequate amount of stock. Though an organisation has separate finance department for finance management, yet the marketing department also has to determine and manage the expenses incurred on various activities related to marketing. It has to decide in what amount the credit sales are to be made, how much period should be allowed for payment, how to collect the credit, etc. In marketing department, finance is made available in two ways: ()by getting the advance payment from wholesellers (ii) by accepting the deposit amount from different agencies.
(4) Buying and Assembling – For every entrepreneur, buying is very important. Success of selling depends on the efficiency of buying. Thus, buying cannot be separated from selling. Due to this, through marketing research, policies related to buying should be determined on the basis of available information. Producing the goods according to demand and storing these near sales centre in adequate amount is one of the important function of marketing manager. It is done so that goods can be easily transmitted to traders according to the market demand.
(5) Storage and Warehousing – Generally, there is a large gap between production period and sales period of goods. Thus, proper warehousing is required for keeping the produced goods safe till period of sales. It is the most important function of marketing manager because whole production may get destroyed due to improper storage and organisation may have to bear huge loss. For the storage of goods, warehousing is required. Therefore, warehousing is also included in the marketing activities. In case of seasonal products, storage of goods becomes even more necessary. Thus, for making seasonal goods available for whole year, their storage is necessary.
(6) Transportation – Beginning and end of marketing is concerned with transportation. For bringing the raw material for production and for transmitting the finished goods to consumers, the means of transportation are needed. Some firms arrange their own transportation whereas some firms arrange the transportation on rent
(7) Standardisation and Grading – Under standardisation, goods are manufactured according to the standard sign like ISO, ISI, AGMARK, etc Under grading, produced goods are divided into different sections according to their quality and size. Through this, producers and manufacturers get help in determining the prices of goods.
(8) Branding – Brand is the name, symbol, sign, design or indicator of product through which a manufacturer differentiates his product from the products of other manufacturers. It helps the consumers in buying the product of their own taste by creating differentiation in the same type of products Brand ensures the quality and standard of product. Moreover, it also helps the firm in developing the image of product. Due to this reason, branding has become an important function of marketing. Today various companies are running successfully due to their famous brand names like Samsung, Titan, Videocon, Nirma, Lux, etc.
(9) Packaging – Packaging refers to containers or wrappers in which goods are packed. It is done for the safety of product, for keeping them fresh and securing them against wastage. Besides this, it makes available the important informations related to the qualities of product and their use. In other words, packaging plays an important role in providing an identity to the product and showing it different from competitor’s product.
(10) Pricing – Every producer should determine that price for his product which may be suitable for both producer and consumer i.e. from which producer may earn adequate profits and consumers may also take interest in buying product. In modern times, every marketer uses the price as a tool to face the competition. It is due to this reason, that proper prices should be determined.
(11) Advertising – Advertising is one of the important activities of marketing. Advertisement means the paid form of personal presentation of goods and services which are presented and promoted by the identified sponsor. Often consumers do not have complete knowledge about the goods being sold in the market. Producer gives the information of their product, quality, price, place of availability, etc. through advertising.
(12) Selling – In fact, selling is an inseparable part of marketing. bn selling the ownership of goods is transferred from seller to buyer. If there are no sales, the other activities of marketing get wasted.
(13) Risk Bearing – There are various risks involved in the marketing of products like change in demand, fall in prices, changes in the interests and habits of consumers, etc. These risks can be reduced through proper planning, forecasting and marketing research. Some other types of risks like depreciation, obsolescence, theft, accident, natural calamities, etc. can be reduced through insurance.
(14) After-Sale Services – The importance of marketing is increasing day by day under marketing. The different companies make effective arrangement of after-sale services for establishing effective control in the market. It means that marketing function does not end with the sales but it continues even after sales. It continues in the form of after sales services like home delivery, guarantee, warrantee, free repair service, etc. In this way, it can be said that marketing manager can achieve success after accomplishing all these activities included under the process of marketing.