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KELLOGG.NORTHWESTERN

How Has Marketing Changed over the Past Half-Century?

How Has Marketing Changed over the Past Half-Century?

insight.kellogg.northwestern.edu

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The History Of Marketing

The term “marketing” appeared in the 1900s to describe activities and institutions taking place in markets, and early marketing textbooks were largely descriptive of these activities and institutions.

Marketing Management, which was published in 1967, was the firs...

One of the key underlying ideas advanced in the very first edition of the book was that company actions must be driven by customers and their needs. This core principle of customer-centricity has remained the central idea across all editions of the book.

The rise of big d...

Marketing is all about understanding, designing, communicating, and delivering value. This is the foundation of marketing strategy and has not changed with time. What has changed are the tools that companies use to create value.

Data analytics, automation...

One important change that affects the business philosophy of many companies is redefining their ultimate purpose. As a result, an increasing number of companies include the creation of societal value in their mission statements.

This is an important development that is likely to h...

In the old days, a brand simply told you what the product is and does and how it’s priced. But today, a brand is the company’s promise to deliver a specific benefit that addresses a particular need of its customers.

Moreover, the promise of many brands extends beyond functionality...

As more and more products are becoming commoditized, customers are looking beyond functionality for something that is meaningful. It is no longer just about the product.

It is also about who the company behind this product is and what this company stands for. As companies...

Having a purpose also helps companies attract and retain employees. If you stand for something, you have a better chance of getting and keeping the right people, which ultimately will enhance profitability.

This also extends to a company’s partners. For example, companies...

The ultimate goal is to create value, what has changed is the proliferation of information. In the past, advertising was the main tool to inform customers about products. Now, customers can get detailed product information from a variety of sources, both from the company as well ...

It’s important to realize that today’s consumers are different. They are connected with so many people from so many other parts of the world and can find information with a simple click, without needing a salesman or an ad.

Anyone who’s going to buy a car will probabl...

People tend to go shopping in brick-and-mortar stores for different reasons.

  • Some go for purely utilitarian reasons. They appreciate the fact that they can see what the product looks and feels like in reality and will eventually be able to buy it instantly and take it home.

In the past, marketing was not part of the development of the product. It was only called in after the product was made. Then it was the marketers’ job to sell as much as they could.

But now marketing participates in product development. Marketers can off...

As technological developments enable companies to track the impact of their activities, managers are expected to be able to document the return on the company’s marketing investment. This has its advantages and drawbacks.

  • On the positive side, it enables the company to better alloca...

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