Today's Notables

The importance of Marketing (Part 3)

May 2003
Hisashi Furuichi
President and C.E.O.

In September and October of last year, I discussed the importance of service marketing with particular emphasis on development of a system that puts the highest priority on the response to the customer. This time, I would like to address the overall concept of marketing. The American Marketing Association defines marketing as: "The process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organizational objectives."

As the figure below suggests, the seller receives something of satisfactory value in place of the function that satisfies the buyer who is willing to provide the value to the seller in exchange for the function or service. This is a very simple concept.

This is very simple, but with a plethora of products and information exacerbated by a downward economic pressure on prices, both are not always satisfied. That is where it is up to the seller to analyze where the buyer is dissatisfied, determine what will satisfy the buyer and reflect it as improvements in the product or service offering. The marketing process has to be finely attuned enough to analyze and respond to customer dissatisfaction, and then incorporate improvements in the product or service to create that satisfaction.

In the figure above, there is only a buyer and seller. However, in an organization where we work, there are actually three entities: organization, employee and customer. It is among these three that either satisfaction or dissatisfaction will occur. Between the corporation and employee, internal marketing is necessary to maintain satisfaction, while external marketing exists between organization and customer. Finally, interactive marketing must occur between the employee and customer.

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