Modern approach to marketing is referred to as the marketing concept which has developed gradually passing through different stages called Marketing Management Philosophies
- The Production Concept
This concept lays emphasis on production and assumes that consumers will always respond to products that are made available to them. This concept developed when there was a period of manufacturing dominance and there was no competition. It was producers market and hence production problems were of more importance than anything else.
The major task of the management was to strive constantly to increase production and there were no selling or marketing problems. The production concept may boost the sales in the initial stages but it invites the criticism that it is impersonal in its approach and ignores the interests of the consumers.
- The Product Concept
With the passage of time, it was realized that it is not only the quantity of production but also the quantity of the product that is important. The product concept assumes that the consumers will respond favourably to the best quality products that are reasonably priced and hence the major task of the management is to improve the quality of the product it offers to successfully attract and hold customers. Enterprises which rely too much upon the product concept may face difficulties due to the tendency on the part of such enterprises “to look to often in a mirror when they should be looking out of the window.”
- The Sales Concept
With the development in technological field, the competition had grown and the market had become more complex. During 1920’s and 30’s the selling activity became more important and marketing was regarded merely as a selling activity, giving rise to the sales concept. The selling concept assumes that the consumers will generally not buy enough of the firm’s products unless their interest is stimulated in its products through substantial selling and promotional activities. In this concept the focus is on the product, the means are selling and promoting and the objective is maximization of profits through sales volume. The drawback of the sales concept is that it ignores the customer’s interest and a firm which follows this concept may face difficulties in the long run.
- The Marketing Concept
The modern approach to marketing is referred to as the marketing concept. The essence of the marketing concept is that the customer and not the product is the centre of entire business activity. It is also referred to as the customer-oriented approach to business. This concept explains the rationale for a firm’s existence in terms of its ability to satisfy some aspects of consumer needs and recognizes the purpose of the business as to ‘create a customer’.
In the words of Stanton, “the marketing concept is a philosophy, an attitude, or a course of business action. The customers want satisfaction in the economic and social justification of a company’s existence. Consequently all company’s activities in production, engineering and finance, as well as marketing, must be devoted to, first, determining what the customers wants are and then, satisfying these wants while making a reasonable profit.
According to the marketing concept, the main task of the enterprise is:
(i) To determine the actual needs, wants and preferences of customers, and
(ii) To adopt the enterprise in such a way so as to deliver the desired satisfaction more effectively and efficiently than its rivals.
In this concept, the focus is on the customer needs, the means are integrated marketing and the objective is maximization of profits through customer satisfaction.
- The Social Marketing Concept
In the words of Philip Kotler, the social marketing concept is a management orientation that holds that the key task of the organization is to determine the needs and wants to target markets and to adopt the organization to delivering the desired satisfaction more effectively and efficiently than its competitors in a way that preserves or chances the consumer’s and society’s well being.
The societal marketing concept aims at serving the target markets in such a way as to deliver not only maximum customer satisfaction, but also long-run individual and social benefits. It must concentrate on customer’s needs and interests in addition to their wants and desires. Thus, this concept lays more emphasis on the social responsibilities of business as the latest trend in marketing.