Although an organization’s marketing activity focuses on assessing and satisfying consumer needs, countless other people, groups, and forces interact to shape the nature of its actions . Foremost is the organization itself, whose mission and objectives determine what business it is in and what goals it seeks. Within the organization, management is responsible for establishing these goals. The marketing department works closely with a network of other departments and employees to help provide the customer-satisfying products required for the organization to survive and prosper.
Figure 1–2 also shows the key people, groups, and forces outside the organization that influence its marketing activities. The marketing department is responsible for facilitating relationships, partnerships, and alliances with the organization’s customers, its shareholders (or often representatives of nonprofit organizations), its suppliers, and other organizations. Environmental forces involving social, economic, technological, competitive, and regulatory considerations also shape an organization’s marketing actions. Finally, an organization’s marketing decisions are affected by and, in turn, often have an important impact on society as a whole.
The organization must strike a balance among the sometimes differing interests of these groups. For example, it is not possible to simultaneously provide the lowest-priced and highest-quality products to customers and pay the highest prices to suppliers, the highest wages to employees, and the maximum dividends to shareholders.
What Is Needed for Marketing to Occur
For marketing to occur, at least four factors are required: (1) two or more parties (individuals or organizations) with unsatisfied needs, (2) a desire and ability on their part to have their needs satisfied, (3) a way for the parties to communicate, and (4) something to exchange.
Two or More Parties with Unsatisfied Needs Suppose you’ve developed an unmet need—a desire for a late-night dinner after studying for an exam—but you don’t yet know that Domino’s Pizza has a location in your area. Also unknown to you is that Domino’s recently introduced its tasty Handmade Pan Pizza, just waiting to be ordered, handmade, and delivered. This is an example of two parties with unmet needs: you, desiring a meal, and your local Domino’s Pizza owner, needing someone to buy a Handmade Pan Pizza.
Desire and Ability to Satisfy These Needs Both you and the Domino’s Pizza owner want to satisfy these unmet needs. Furthermore, you have the money to buy the Domino’s Handmade Pan Pizza and the time to order it online or over the telephone. The Domino’s owner has not only the desire to sell its Handmade Pan Pizza but also the ability to do so since the pizza is easily made and delivered to (or picked up by) you.
A Way for the Parties to Communicate The marketing transaction of purchasing a Domino’s Handmade Pan Pizza will never occur unless you know the product exists and its location (street/web address and/or phone number). Similarly, the Domino’s Pizza owner won’t sell the Handmade Pan Pizza unless there’s a market of potential buyers nearby. When you receive a coupon in the mail or drive by me Domino’s store location, this communication barrier between you (the buyer) and the Domino’s Pizza owner (the seller) is overcome.
Something to Exchange Marketing occurs when the transaction takes place and both the buyer and seller exchange something of value. In this case, you exchange your money ($7.99) for the Domino’s Handmade Pan Pizza. Both you and the Domino’s Pizza owner have gained and also given up something, but you are both better off because each of you has satisfied the other’s unmet needs. You have the opportunity to eat a Domino’s Handmade Pan Pizza to satisfy your hunger, but you gave up some money to do so; the Domino’s Pizza owner gave up the Handmade Pan Pizza but received money, which will help the owner remain in business. The ethical and legal foundations of this exchange process are central to marketing and are discussed
Marketing doesn’t happen in a vacuum. The text describes the four factors needed to buy a product like a Domino’s Handmade Pan Pizza.