The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to marketing:


Marketing may be defined as the social and managerial processes by which products, services, and value are exchanged in order to fulfill individuals' or groups' needs and wants. These processes include, but are not limited to, advertising, promotion, distribution, and product management.

Core concepts in marketing

Marketers may sell goods or services directly to consumers, known as business to customer (B2C marketing); commercial organisations (known as business to business marketing or B2B), to government; to not-for-profit organisations (Not-for-profit orgnanization (NFP)) or some combination of any of these.

Actors and relationships

The Consumer: At the centre of the marketing framework is the consumer.
Typically, the consumer refers to the end-user - but this may be an individual or group such as a household, family unit or organisation.
In addition, marketers may need to consider the roles of influencers such as Opinion leaders who increasingly use means such as social media to develop customer to customer networks of influence.
Sales personnel: may go by various names including: Sales representative; Arabber; Bazaari; Costermonger; Hawker (trade); Huckster; Merchant; Peddler; Retailer; Street vendor or Vendor
Selling situations & relationships: Depending on the nature of the business operations, many different types of actors are involved in a variety of selling situations involving a variety of sales personnel, who perform varied sales roles. Sales activities involve many different types of customer relationships - from simple transactional exchange through to long-term, enduring customer relationships.

Needs, wants and demand

Marketers typically begin planning with a detailed understanding of customer needs and wants.

A need is something required for a healthy life (e.g. food, water, shelter).
A want is a desire, wish or aspiration.
When needs or wants are backed by purchasing power, they have the potential to become demands.

Nature of exchange

Exchange, the act of giving or taking one thing of value in return for another is central to marketing activities.

Not all exchange involves Financial transactions, but may also involve barter, contra dealing or other form of trade.

Objects of exchange

The object of exchange can include: Goods; services or experiences; concepts or ideas; causes and may even involve celebrity marketing

Perceptions of value

Foundation economic concepts

Given that marketing has its roots in economics, it shares many foundation concepts with that discipline. Most practicing marketers will have a working knowledge of basic economic concepts and theories.

Planning levels and planning tools

Planning levels

Marketing planning is just one facet of the overall company's planning. Marketing plans must therefore take their guidance from the overall strategic plan or business plan. Most companies produce both a strategic plan and a managerial plan (also known as an operational plan). The distinction between strategic planning and management planning is that they are two phases with different goals.

Strategic planning is fundamentally concerned with the policies that will improve the firm's competitive position. Strategic planning is sometimes called higher-order planning and is usually long-term planning (say 3-7 years) while management planning is short-term and may be carried out for a specific program (e.g. a sales or advertising campaign of a few weeks duration) or carried out annually. Strategic plans typically include a statement of the firm's vision and mission. The Marketing strategy is a plan that shows how the firm's marketing activities will help to achieve the overall strategic goals.
Marketing management is focused on developing the marketing program or Marketing mix (also known as the 4Ps) and is concerned with the implementation of specific action plans designed to achieve objective, measurable targets (SMART objectives). Marketing management plans are typically prepared on an annual planning cycle, but may be prepared for shorter periods for special events such as a product launch, a new logo, change to corporate livery or a repositioning campaign.

Marketing strategies

Growth strategies

Marketing warfare strategies

Planning tools and techniques

Analytical techniques used in marketing planning and strategy development

Marketers draw on a very wide variety of techniques and tools when analysing the market and the broader operating conditions. The technique selected depends on the nature of the situation or problem to be investigated and the analyst's skill and experience.

Techniques used in strategic planning

Techniques used in positioning analysis

Branches of Marketing

The book titled, The Marketing Book, 7th ed., Routledge, Oxon, UK, 2016 edited by Michael J. Baker and Susan Hart identifies the distinct branches of marketing practice as:

For a more detailed breakdown of the relevant topics for each of these key branches of marketing, see Branches of Marketing: Detailed Topics on this page. For special applications of marketing including marketing of specific types of products (e.g. agricultural marketing, faith based marketing, pharmaceutical marketing, political marketing, sports marketing, etc.,) or marketing to specific target groups (e.g. marketing to children, marketing to older people, LBGT marketing) see: Special applications of marketing practice).

Marketing orientations

Marketing orientations are the philosophies or mindsets that guide and shape marketing planning and marketing practice. Some marketing historians believe that different philosophies have informed marketing practice at different times in marketing's history. Although there is no real agreement amongst scholars about the precise nature or number of distinct marketing orientations, the most commonly cited include:

The marketing management framework

Marketing planning or the process of developing a marketing program requires a detailed understanding of the marketing framework including Consumer behavior; Market segmentation and Marketing research. In the process of understanding the consumer market to be served, marketers may need to consider such issues as:

Consumer basics

Consumer decision-making

The main steps in the consumer's purchase decision process are: Need or problem recognition -> Information search -> Evaluation of alternatives -> Product/Brand Choice -> Post purchase behaviour

Influences on consumer decision-making

Consumers purchase decisions are influenced by a range of internal and external factors including:

Internal influences
External influences

Market research and marketing research

Marketing research refers to research activities designed to understand the marketing environment, including competitors, the socio-cultural environment and the politico-legal operating environment. Market research specifically refers to research concerned with understanding the market, that is consumers and is designed to yield actionable customer insights.

Quantitative research methods

Quantitative methods may also be known as Scientific methods.

Qualitative research methods

Specific research tools and techniques

Scale/Questionnaire Design


Market segmentation and targeting

List of abbreviations for market segments

Market segmentation

Specific approaches to segmenting markets
(a) Segmenting consumer markets

The main bases for segmenting consumer markets include:

(b) Segmenting business or industrial markets

The main bases for segmenting business or industrial markets include:

Measuring market segment size


Proprietary segmentation databases and software

To support, market segmentation analysis marketers may require access to databases with large sample sizes. A number of commercial companies provide such data which typically includes proprietary software designed to interrogate the data and backed by algorithms that support different types of segmentation approaches. These commercial databases are often country or region specific. Popular geo-demographic segmentation databases include:

Popular psychometric tools include:

Statistical techniques used in segmentation analysis

Marketing management: The marketing program (also known as the marketing mix or the 4 Ps)

The marketing program, also known as the marketing mix or the 4 ps consists of the product, price, place and promotion.


New product development (NPD)

Innovation and New product development are an important part of a firm's long term growth strategy.

The steps in a basic new production development process are:

Idea generation (or Ideation (creative process)) ->Concept screening-> Concept testing -> Business analysis -> Product development -> Market testing -> Commercialization and may include a Soft launch

The NPD process can be applied to:

Products: New product development; Design
Services: Service innovation; Service design
Environmental goods or services: Eco-innovation; Ecodesign; Lean product development

A recent trend in NPD is the use of participatory design, also known as co-design or co-operative design, which involves stakeholders such as employees or consumers in the design process.

Sources of new product ideas include: Research and development; Consumers or Users; distributors, suppliers or crowdsourcing.

Types of innovation

NPD represents a high risk activity. It requires substantial investment and a list of product failures suggests that the probability of failure is relatively high.

New product adoption and diffusion

In order to develop a superior understanding of how new products are adopted by the market place and the factors that influence adoption rates, marketers often turn to a number of models or theories of the adoption/diffusion process:

Legal protection of new products and brands

New product development, including the design of product features, manufacturing processes, packaging design etc. involves creative work and therefore constitutes intellectual property. A number of different legal avenues are available to protect different types of intellectual property.

Brand management

Branding strategies

Brand protection

Packaging and labelling


Pricing strategies

Pricing tactics

Place (distribution)

The following methods are prohibited in most nations:

Promotion (also known as marketing communications or integrated marketing communications (IMC))

Elements of the promotional mix


Advertising models: How does advertising work?

Advertising research
Advertising Media
Award-winning advertising campaigns
Main types of internet promotion
E-mail spam, e-mail marketing, post-click marketing, Website monetizing, Search engine marketing (SEM), search engine optimization (SEO), Display advertising, * Contextual advertising
Internet advertising methods
Advertising methods: Ad filtering, ad serving, central ad server, pop-up ad, contextual advertising, web banner
Search engine marketing payment methods
pay per click, click fraud, paid inclusion
Internet metrics
Click through rate (CTR), cost per action (CPA), cost per click (CPC), cost per impression (CPI), cost per mille (CPM), effective cost per mille (eCPM)


Direct and digital marketing

Personal selling

Sales promotion

Public relations


Communications planning

Measuring communications effects

The extended marketing mix

The extended marketing mix is used in the marketing of services, ideas and customer experiences and typically refers to a model of 7 Ps and includes the original 4 Ps plus process, physical evidence and people. Some texts use a model of 8 Ps and include performance level (service quality) as an 8th P.


Physical evidence


Measuring marketing performance: Marketing metrics

Marketing activities are costly and represent an investment in a company or brand's long term future. With the increased emphasis on accountability, marketers must consider how they measure marketing's performance and communicate that to stakeholders. Various types of metrics that are in widespread use may be classified as:

Measures of market/ competitive performance

Measures of advertising and promotional effectiveness

Measures of brand health

Customer-oriented measures

Special topics in marketing

Branches of Marketing: Detailed topics

Business Marketing

Environmental marketing

International marketing

Relationship marketing

Services Marketing

Social marketing


Types of retailer

Types of retail outlet and shopping precincts

Special applications of marketing and promotion


Influential marketing thinkers

  • Wroe Alderson (1898-1965) - proponent of marketing science and instrumental in developing the functional school of marketing
  • Igor Ansoff (1918-2002) - marketing/ management strategist; noted for the product/market growth matrix
  • David Aaker - highly awarded educator and author in the area of marketing and organisational theory
  • N. W. Ayer & Son - probably the first advertising agency to use mass media (i.e. telegraph) in a promotional campaign
  • Leonard Berry (professor) - author and educator with strong interest in health marketing and relationshp marketing
  • Neil H. Borden (1922-1962) - coined the term, 'marketing mix'
  • Clayton Christensen - educator, author and consultant, published in the areas of innovation and entrpreneurship
  • George S. Day - author and educator; has published in the area of strategic marketing
  • Ernest Dichter (1907-1991) - pioneer of motivational research
  • Andrew S. C. Ehrenberg (1926-2010) - made contributions to the methodology of data collection, analysis and presentation, and to understanding buyer behaviour and how advertising works
  • Edward Filene (1860-1937) - early pioneer of modern retailing methods
  • Seth Godin - Popular author, entrepreneur, public speaker and marketer
  • Paul E. Green -academic and author; the founder of conjoint analysis and popularised the use of multidimensional scaling, clustering, and analysis of qualitative data in marketing.
  • Shelby D. Hunt -former editor of the Journal of Marketing and organisational theorist
  • John E. Jeuck (1916-2009) - early marketing educator
  • Philip Kotler (1931-) - popularised the managerial approach to marketing; prolific author
  • E. St. Elmo Lewis - developed the AIDA model used in sales and advertising
  • Christopher Lovelock (1940-2008) - author of many books and articles on services marketing
  • Theodore Levitt (1925-2006) - former editor of Harvard Business Review, prolific author of marketing articles and famed for his article, "Marketing Myopia"
  • E. Jerome McCarthy - popularised the managerial approach and developed the concept of the 4Ps
  • Arthur Nielsen - early market researcher; pioneered methods for radio and TV ratings
  • David Ogilvy (businessman) - advertising guru, early pioneer of market positioning
  • Vance Packard - journalist and author, wrote The Hidden Persuaders (1957) which explored the use of motivational research in marketing practice
  • Charles Coolidge Parlin(1872-1942) - pioneer of market and advertising research methods
  • Rosser Reeves - advertising guru; advocate of frequency
  • Al Ries - advertising executive, author and credited with coining the term, 'positioning' in the late 1960s
  • Arch Wilkinson Shaw (1876-1962) - early management theorist, proponent of the scientific approach to marketing
  • Henry Charles Taylor (1873-1969) - the agricultural marketer
  • Richard S. Tedlow - author and educatator; published in the area of marketing history
  • J Walter Thompson - founded one of the earliest modern advertising agencies
  • Jack Trout - together with Al Ries, popularised the positioning concept
  • Don E. Schultz - father of 'integrated marketing'
  • Stephen Vargo- together with R.F. Lusch developed the service-dominant approach to marketing
  • Henry Grady Weaver (1889-1949) - developed the survey questionnaire for use in market research
  • Jerry (Yoram) Wind - former editor of the Journal of Marketing, educator and marketer
  • Byron Sharp - N.Z. academic; one of the first to document buyer loyalty in empirical work
  • Daniel Starch - developed the so-called Starch scores to measure impact of magazine advertising; Starch scores are still in use
  • Gerald Zaltman - developed the Metaphor Elicitation Technique (ZMET)
  • Valarie Zeithaml - together with A. Parasurman and L.L. Berry, developed the model of service quality and the SERVQUAL instrument

Trade magazines and academic journals

Marketing & advertising associations, societies and peak industry associations

Archives, museums and galleries (dedicated to marketing and/or advertising)

Lists and outlines

Marketing education

There is a marketing group call list marketing group

External links

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