What is Marketing?

Marketing Connects Buyers and Sellers

Bridge between buyers and sellersMarketing, at its most basic level, is about connecting buyers and sellers. Think of marketing is a bridge between those that sell and those that buy. In a high school or college marketing class, you learn there are 7 ways to build bridges between buyers and sellers:

  1. Distribution – gets your product where buyers want it
  2. Selling – communicates why people should buy and asking for the sale
  3. Financing – helps people buy with some type of payments or loan
  4. Information Management – is data about what people may need, want or to buy and data about customers and potential customers
  5. Pricing – sets selling prices to make the most money
  6. Product/Service Management – understands what customers need and want and what companies can sell
  7. Promotion – lets people know what sellers have and how it helps buyers.

In high school or college, these are called the seven functions of marketing – but we don’t have to make this fancy-smancy. Marketing is a bridge that connects buyers and sellers.

Products are things we buy – things we can touch. Services are things we pay someone to do for us. A beard trimmer or hair clipper is a PRODUCT that we can buy to cut our own hair. Going to a barber or salon and getting a haircut is a service – we pay someone to cut our hair for us.

When we buy meat, seasoning, cheese, tomatoes and salsa; we are purchasing products. If we go to Taco Bell and buy a taco, we are buying a service – they make a taco for us. Grocery stores sell mostly food products. Restaurants provide a service – making food for us to eat.

Buyers have needs – things we need to have to stay alive and be healthy. Out basic needs are fairly simple: food, water, clothing, shelter, transportation, attention, and entertainment. Once we have these needs met – we might be satisfied. In theory, we don’t need anything more.

But most of us want more – we have more than needs – we have wants. Wants are things we can do without, but we still desire. I need shoes. I might want sports shoes – I might want NIKE sports shoes. Once I get them, I might not be happy with them or I might want more shoes. Maybe now I want Dockers Castaway Boat Shoe. I don’t need these kinds of shoes nor do I need these brands – but I might want them.

Needs are limited, but what we want, to a marketer, is UNLIMITED – this is what marketing professionals work to have us believe. We want their products and we want their brands. We want them over and over again. But we don’t all want the same things, do we?

So how do marketers communicate with different people to make to make unlimited wants out of our basic needs? That is another topic called Market Segmentation and Target Marketing – that is another video.

Getting started today, just remember:

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