Understanding Marketing & Management.

Marketing’s broader importance extends to society as a whole.Marketing has helped introduce
and gain acceptance of new products that have eased or enriched people’s lives. It can inspire enhancements
in existing products as marketers innovate to improve their position in the marketplace.
Successful marketing builds demand for products and services, which, in turn, creates jobs.
By contributing to the bottom line, successful marketing also allows firms to more fully engage in
socially responsible activities.2
CEOs recognize the role of marketing in building strong brands and a loyal customer base, intangible
assets that contribute heavily to the value of a firm. Consumer goods makers, health care
insurers, nonprofit organizations, and industrial product manufacturers all trumpet their latest
marketing achievements. Many now have a chief marketing officer (CMO) to put marketing on a
more equal footing with other C-level executives such as the chief financial officer (CFO) or chief
information officer (CIO).3
Making the right marketing decisions isn’t always easy. One survey of more than a thousand
senior marketing and sales executives revealed that although 83 percent felt that marketing and
sales capabilities were a top priority for their organization’s success, in rating their actual marketing
effectiveness, only 6 percent felt that they were doing an “extremely good” job.4
Marketers must decide what features to design into a new product or service, what prices to set,
where to sell products or offer services, and how much to spend on advertising, sales, the Internet,
or mobile marketing. They must make those decisions in an Internet-fueled environment where
consumers, competition, technology, and economic forces change rapidly, and the consequences of
the marketer’s words and actions can quickly multiply.

Domino’s When two employees in Conover, North Carolina, posted a YouTube
video showing themselves preparing sandwiches while putting cheese up their noses and violating
other health-code standards, Domino’s learned an important lesson about PR and brand
communications in a modern era. Once it found the employees—who claimed the video was
just a gag and the sandwiches were never delivered—the company fired them. In just a few
days, however, there had been more than a million downloads of the video
and a wave of negative publicity.When research showed that perception of
quality for the brand had turned from positive to negative in that short time,
the firm aggressively took action through social media such as Twitter,
YouTube, and others.5
As Domino’s learned, in an era of connectivity, it is important
to respond swiftly and decisively.While marketers were coming to
grips with this increasingly wired world, the economic recession
of 2008–2009 brought budget cuts and intense pressure from senior
management to make every marketing dollar count.More than
ever, marketers need to understand and adapt to the latest marketplace
developments. At greatest risk are firms that fail to carefully
monitor their customers and competitors, continuously improve
their value offerings and marketing strategies, or satisfy their
employees, stockholders, suppliers, and channel partners in
the process.
Skillful marketing is a never-ending pursuit. Consider how some top firms drive business:
• OfficeMax promoted a new line of products by professional organizer Peter Walsh with Web
videos and in-store events featuring local experts demonstrating his OfficeMax-branded
organizing system.
• eBay promoted its “Let’s Make a Daily Deal” holiday promotion by recreating the famous
1970s TV game show Let’s Make a Deal in Times Square, adding an online component so
people outside New York City could play.
• Johnson & Johnson launched BabyCenter.com to help new parents. Its success is thought to
have contributed to subscription slumps experienced by parenting magazines.
Good marketers are always seeking new ways to satisfy customers and beat competition.6
After a distasteful video was
posted online by two employees,
Domino’s Pizza learned a valuable
lesson about the power of social
media.