Marketing Basics

September 07, 2011
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Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large. - American Marketing Association

It may seem elementary to start off a discussion about marketing with the definition, but the definition is fundamental to understanding the task at hand. Marketing is anything and everything that enables a customer's decision when considering a product or service. It includes branding, public relations, advertising, social media, direct marketing and any other point of contact with the consumer or potential client. In short, marketing drives sales.

For that reason, I would argue that marketing is not an expense, but rather an investment. In tough times, the marketing department is the first target of cutbacks. And, to be fair, if you have only enough money for either product development or marketing, marketing will and should lose that decision every time. But it is important to remember, good marketing brings money back to your company. And, perhaps more importantly, good marketing doesn't have to cost millions. It isn't about how much you spend, but how you spend it. The person who invests wisely makes more money.

Today, navigating the marketing environment can be difficult. There are many methods available, at varying costs. But like any good investment portfolio, a good marketing plan is diverse and accounts for every opportunity to find customers. A good strategist will help to identify opportunities and tailor the message to your business and audience. There is no such thing as a one-size fits all approach to marketing.

With that in mind, I have created a guide to some basic concepts within the marketer's toolbox. I tried to include some background information and some ideal uses, as well as some drawbacks. Click on the images below to find out more about specific topics. I hope this helps.

Of course, if you want more information about a topic or think there is something important missing, let me know!


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Jeff Francis is a marketing geek who would never refer to himself as a guru. He is that weird sort who enjoys watching commercials and analyzing communication strategies. He is also available for hire and would love to hear from you. So, head on over to the contact page and get in touch.

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