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The Growing Responsibilities of Marketing

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The Growing Responsibilities of Marketing - Summary

The paper was published in 1970 where the author seems to have exceedingly high expectations from the marketing sector in both social and economic domains. He states that as the impact of marketing on society increases, so would the social responsibilities of the domain wherein marketing would not only be responsible for economic growth but also social inclusiveness and justice. The author identifies several such domains where marketing would play an important role.

The author mentions a paradigm shift, from a desire of affluence or security to social justice. The author also mentions the role of a marketer in making the economy efficient while ensuring that the vigor of such practices does not impede the economy in the long run. The author turns our gaze towards fraudulent and deceptive advertising practices and asks us to be the change, because what is acceptable now, would one day become unethical, then immoral and eventually illegal. The author anticipates the consumer of the 70s to be data driven, someone who doesn't just buy a product but buys into the whole ecosystem that entails the guarantees, warranties, feedback system and performance metrics along with it. It comes to a marketing professional, not to pose any obstructions in the way of change, but neither are they supposed to support those who lack an understanding of marketing and thus have to maintain a well-informed stand. The author also comments about the increasing social awareness which highlights the relevance of subsistence in the third world where the rich become richer and poor become poorer. Popular perception of people would be that the marketing domain is one that is supposed to be favoring the rich, but, it would be up to the people in the marketing domain to step up and contribute to the welfare of the poor and break that stereotype. Marketing is not something just meant for the rich. Marketing is meant to deal with both rich and poor. Both of these cultures require separate methodology to deal with them. As the economy progresses it starts to favor the rich and that could lead to a class war. It is the responsibility of the marketing domain to avoid these circumstances and turn this threat into an opportunity for the economy to grow. The author also explores the possibilities of marketing in niche domains such as social services, human resource development, education, health, religion and fine arts. He also states how marketing can help social and cultural sectors to provide tailor-made services to the consumers and help them distribute, price and promote their product. We are also told that when the basic needs of mankind are met, only then we strive to achieve higher aspirations. We start emphasizing on non-economic issues and start causing resistance to the competitive world. Marketing being seen as a sector catering to the wealthy, is prone to criticism from both external as well as internal agents. A marketer should, hence, grab opportunities rather than taking popular decisions and should analyze the long-term consequences of his decisions before taking one. The author sees the marketers in his future promoting and adopting eco-friendly methodologies. As there can never be clear cut distinction between what is good and what is bad, it is the responsibility of the marketer to analyze the effects of economic development on the environment. It is his duty to start asking the question of whether a product should be sold or not. With the changing definition of marketing, acceptance of a product has become a thing of crucial importance. Rather than focusing on the product, the marketers now find themselves focusing on the consumers more, leading to a “consumer concept” market. The author sees in the near future, marketing becoming well integrated into the company. He sees marketing as a well-planned system in an organization. But simultaneously he also points out the consequences of the system becoming too rigid and inflexible to changes in the work environment which is not very desirable. Towards the end, the author acknowledges the power of data and surveillance in modern marketing paradigms and urges marketers to use this data responsibly.

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