FridayFive: 5 Reasons Why Marketing Is Not The Spawn Of The Devil
‘if anyone here is in marketing or advertising…kill yourself. You have no rationalisation for what you do, you are Satan’s little helpers.’ – Bill Hicks
As a marketer, and Hicks fan, that quote from Bill Hicks constantly haunts me. Marketing is often given a bad name. And at times, rightly so.
Being reminded of the social responsibility is a good thing. Bad marketing can destroy a business in an instant. Those who use spam, lie in sales letters and sell inferior products, will never gain loyal customers, and will constantly battle against the tide. Consumers are intelligent (just like you and me!). And anyway, business is more than the money isn’t it?
Here are 5 reasons why marketing is not evil:
- Marketing’s true aim is to fulfil a need. If you truely believe – and know – that your product is needed by your target market, then your passion is genuine, it will show and your customers will love you for it.
- Marketing is our human instinct – our urge to connect and share. If you give me a free apple, I’ll probably come back tomorrow and buy 2. Not because you gave me the hard sell, but because marketing is genuinely about giving the customer value. Without value, it’s a short relationship. With value, I’ll tell my friends too.
- Without marketing, what is technological progress? Whilst some technological progress is spurred by space exploration and military advances, our constant desire for better things is fulfilled by businesses. We could still be watching blurry VHS videos. But marketing has brought us a much more rich and enjoyable experience, because market research – customer feedback – proved that people were not satisfied with clunky machines that chewed up tapes.
- Marketing is taking your product to those who need it. ‘I have a problem, but how do I know you’ve solved it for me?’ Even if you run a cornershop, people need to be informed. If the newsagent round the corner closes, and you start selling newspapers to gain those customers, how will those potential new customers know?
- Without marketing, the world is a dull place. Take just one example: Marketing is largely responsible for the immense variety of music available to you today. It may feel odd to put it down to marketing, but without the gig flyers, promo videos, PR stunts and magazines, and without the promotion of such a huge array of music, it would not be as deep and varied as it is today. The proliferation of music is largely due to marketing.
So why does marketing seem shady to some? Usually because they have experienced or been the victim of high pressure marketing.
If you feel uneasy when selling your product to customers, then something is wrong. Either you’re targeting the wrong people, or you don’t have a strong enough belief in your product. It’s a hard lesson to learn, but it is essential in business.
If you see competitors using high pressure marketing, then just ignore them. You don’t have to compete with fools, they’ll never have a sustainable business. If you stay true to your product, you will.
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