Introduction to Marketing

Quick Summary: Marketing is the widest range of all business topics; it is easy to miss a few basic concepts.


Of all the business disciplines and subjects covered in this collection, marketing has, by far, the widest scope of activities.  Four year undergraduate and graduate degrees are offered in marketing.  Many areas of specialization are offered within these programs.  Additionally, there are many private sector organizations that provide even more detailed information in specific areas.  With so many wide-spread subjects, there are a number of basic marketing issues centered on product placement that are often missed in the fury surrounding initial product announcements. 

The length of this chapter, or more properly, the brevity of this chapter, will probably alienate every marketing professional, and for good reason.  The subject of marketing is clearly the broadest discipline covered in any of the chapters in this collection.  As one example of the scope of marketing, the site, provides a list of 72 different definitions of marketing.  As a further example of the scope of marketing, the list shown below shows the areas of expertise of one marketing company.

Marketing Strategy                                                          Messaging Platforms

Brand Management                                                         Marketing Plan Creation

Project Management                                                       Event Management

Product Management                                                      Product & Company Launches

Innovation & Insights                                                       Startup Marketing

Marketing Research                                                         Personal Development

Website & Social Media Analysis                                  Content Development

Public Relations                                                                 Competitive Analysis

Corporate & Marketing Communications                   Video Production & Photo Shoots

Channel Marketing                                                           Social Media Strategy

Marketing Automation & CRM                                     Social Media Execution

Website Design                                                                 PPC, SEO, SEM

Graphic Design                                                                  Mobile Marketing


As extensive as this list is, there are many more disciplines that could be listed.  Finally, marketing represents the largest course of study in most business schools.  This chapter does not begin to scratch the surface on any of these areas.  Instead, the eighteen articles in the four sections discuss common pitfalls and basic considerations that are often missed.  The sections and articles included in this chapter are listed below along with a quick summary of each.

Probably, most experienced marketers could add an article or two to this listing as well.  The four sections and their associated articles considerably overlap.  Many of the articles could have been placed in different sections. 

Adding to the potential confusion, several of the articles in this chapter could have easily been placed in the Sales, Customers, Strategy, and Competition chapters as well.  In turn, some of the articles in those chapters could have easily been placed in this chapter.

Finally, the area of Product Marketing is not addressed in this chapter.  That subject, with its direct ties to Product Development activities, is addressed in the Development chapter of this collection.


Chapter Sections and Summaries

Marketing Concepts

It is easy to jump into the host of tactical marketing issues and unconsciously assume some of the “givens.”  Often, the target market is just assumed to be known without giving some objective high-level thought.


It is natural to compare a new offering to existing competitive alternatives and miss the point that competitors are also making comparisons and planning new offerings too.

The Launch

The product launch is a welcomed event representing the completion of the development tasks.  However, it must be remembered that it also represents the beginning of an entirely new set of challenges.


Carefully construct your messages in terms of what you want your customer to hear and remember, and not on what you want to say.  There can be a huge difference.


Chapter Articles and Summaries

Introduction to Marketing

Marketing is the widest range of all business topics; it is easy to miss a few basic concepts.

Aim, Ready, Fire

First aim for your initial market and then get ready for it.

Look in the Mirror First

Marketing needs to ask some tough basic questions before prospects do.

Look Outside Too

It is easy to fall into the trap of “group think” and miss issues until after product announcement.

Bigger Pies are Better

Long-term growth is more easily achieved by focusing on expanding served markets.

The Middle is Nowhere

Do not attempt to serve every segment in a large market.  Instead focus on a segment.

Turn the Tables

Develop strategies to offset potential negative comments before they even occur.

Keep it Simple

Keep the buying choice simple and straightforward to avoid confusing the customer.

Table Stakes or Options

Premium features quickly migrate to today’s standard features requiring constant repositioning.

Make a Claim

Make realistic claims about your company to help customers make favorable comparisons.

Saturn Five or Bottle Rocket

Launching a new product can be very exciting, but can also have significant negative impacts.

Tarzan was Smart

New product announcements can cause short-term revenue slumps

Beware of New Products Attraction

A successful product launch can result in delayed revenue.

The Launch is the Middle

A successful product launch only sets the stage for the revenue producing follow up activities.

It's the Forest, Not the Trees

Don’t initially confuse your audience with details; sell the fundamental value proposition first.

What Not How

Don’t waste your time telling customers how good you are. Explain how you provide them value.

What Will They Remember

Paint a simple picture that encapsulates the value that you provide.

They Know You First

Provide the means for prospects to educate themselves instead of just informing them.

The Name is Not the Game

Naming companies and products can be an arduous process.  Providing value is more important.


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A Handy Reference Guide for Executives and Managers at All Levels.

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