From Selling to Marketing

   Consumerism is the “shame of marketing.”
   Despite the emphasis on marketing and the marketing approach, mar- keting is still rhetoric rather than reality in far too many businesses. “Consumerism” proves this. For what consumerism demands of business is that it actually market. It demands that business start out with the needs, the realities, the values of the customer. It demands that business define its goal as the satisfaction of customer needs. It demands that business base its reward on its contribution to the customer. That after years of marketing rhetoric  consumerism  could  become  a  powerful  popular  movement proves that not much marketing has been practiced. Consumerism is the “shame  of marketing.” Indeed,  selling and  marketing  are  antithetical rather than synonymous or even complementary.
   There will always, one can assume, be a need for some selling. But the aim of marketing is to make selling superfluous. The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well that the product or service fits her and sells itself. Ideally, marketing should result in a customer who is ready to buy. We may be a long way from this ideal. But consumerism is a clear indication that the right motto for business management should in- creasingly be, “From selling to marketing.”

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