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Marketing affects our everyday lives from the moment we wake up and go to sleep, such as what type of car that we drive, what websites we visit during the day and what make of clothing we wear. These all affect how we behave in our everyday life and how we respond to things we see and hear within current affairs and the media. There are a number of definitions as to what marketing actually is and how it affects society. Kotler (2006) defines marketing as “a societal process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating, offering and freely exchanging products and services of value with others.” However, the British Chartered Institute of Marketing (1984) describes it as “the management process responsible for indentifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements probability”, cited in Cooper et al (2005, p.554) Even though these are two different definitions, they both describe marketing as being a process and both mention the value of customers .Many people think marketing is just about marketing goods and services, but there is much more scope than that as marketers can market almost anything, such as persons, properties, places and events, ideas and information to get through to their consumers. Marketing is said to be pervasive in today’s society and Cambridge Dictionaries define pervasive as “present, spread out or noticeable in every part of something or place.”[http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/pervasive]. I agree with this statement and think marketing is very pervasive in today’s society and this essay will evaluate how pervasive marketing can be and how it affects consumers recognising brands and their behaviour towards certain market strategies. This essay will also include a number of factors such as marketing psychology, globalisation of brands and marketing technology to help me prove and evaluate this claim I am agreeing with.
Marketing technology is a good example to prove how pervasive marketing is in our lives. This is because an increase in social networking technology means marketing can be more spread out and noticeable. For example, marketers use social networking technology such as Facebook to stay in constant contact with their customer base and understand their needs and wants. Therefore, the more marketers know about people through Facebook, the more knowledge they develop about people and ideas, to result in new products to target them with. For example in the US Facebook has taken over Google and is second only to Google in the UK, proving the sheer popularity and usage of the social network site. [https://www.keynote.co.uk] Which has led to 250 million people logging on to Facebook per day and 200 million users have installed it on their phone [http://www.facebook.com], proving that it is a great distribution channel for marketers to sell and inform consumers about their ideas and products. The Social Ads at the side of the page on Facebook offers is a space for companies to advertise themselves and their products to Facebook users. The company can chose what consumers see their advert by typing in keywords such as, age, sex, hobbies, political views, relationship status, education and location and then relate this to their product. For example, Dominoes Pizza use this lot to advertise themselves to their consumer base as their company is usually within these Social Ads.[ http://www.facebook.com] Therefore, the rise in the popularity of social network technology has resulted in marketing being more pervasive because it’s around everybody that uses Facebook all the time, even though they might not notice it. Another example to support that marketing technology has led to marketing being more pervasive is by the globalisation of brands. As “technology advances in transportation, shipping and communication have made it easier for companies to market in other countries”. Kotler, Keller (2006, p.103) Therefore this means it is easier for consumers to buy products globally and travel anywhere for the experience of these products in other countries and experience local tastes and culture. This clearly, shows that marketing is pervasive because it is everywhere you go despite which country you are in and what type of behavioural or geo-demographic characteristics you have.
Another example that has led marketing to become more pervasive is marketing psychology. For example, companies such as L’Oreal use a number of different physiological strategies to get through to their consumer base. This can be shown by companies repeating their adverts and pairing products to have a positive familiarisation connection with the consumer. This type of physiology is used for companies to help market their brands. For example, L’Oreal is not only known for its slogan “because your worth it” but it is also known for its faces of celebrities within the radio and television adverts, most commonly associated with Cheryl Cole and Halle Berry as their adverts are repeated on television throughout the day [http://www.loreal.co.uk]. Resembling a brand with a slogan and celebrity is a clever way of marketing because when consumers see the celebrity there is a stimulus to the brand and when they see the brand, there is a stimulus to the celebrity, so in turn makes a positive resemblance. One physiological strategy is to transfer the meaning from an unconditioned stimulus to explain why certain brand names show strong effects on consumers. For example, Nike is known for “Just Do It” and McDonalds is known for “I’m Loving It”. Therefore, once consumers here this slogan they automatically recognise that brand due to their marketing slogan, which differentiates it from other brands such as Nike from Addidas and McDonalds from Burger king and gives it the uniqueness. Therefore this shows that psychological factors help marketing become more pervasive in that in results in certain stimulus, which can result in certain behaviour towards that product.
The Cola-cola Company has recently been hailed as a company with “inspirational marketing, as their profits soar”, for example, they have recently announced a 13% revenue increase from last year, proving they are doing something right as sales have increased [http://www.marketingweek.co.uk]. This could however, been down to their marketing and psychology strategies, as the emphasis on their adverts watched by consumers relate to ‘happiness’. If a consumer receives this message from a brand, it is likely they will consider buying their products because they will have a positive attitude towards it. This has led to their most recent advert from February 2011 called ‘Siege’ currently being shown in the USA, to bring across a message to their consumers that coke “has the power to bring happiness and optimism, even the darkest situations.” [http://www.thecoca-colacompany.com]. Therefore, this shows companies can use a certain type of ‘hidden’ message to make their consumers feel happy and in turn result in customer loyalty. This shows, to an extent that marketing is pervasive because it is in all types of adverts even though some consumers might not recognise it.
Marketing is used in order to influence society and our behaviours when we see things. Most marketing is related to private companies marketing their goods and services in order to create and demand and in turn a profit for their company. However, there are some marketing acts that can be used for non profitable reasons such as health issues to protect society. For example, in late 2009 the government launched a new NHS act, the F.A.S.T campaign, to boost awareness in society and to get people to act fast if they think somebody is suffering from a stroke and to call emergency services, as soon as possible. The campaign has been marketed on posters, Facebook, television adverts and on the radio [http://www.nhs.uk/], and is still a popular advert on the television today. This market campaign again has a strong psychological status to it as the television adverts are almost like an interactive test, and shows what each letter means and what to look out for, so the next time you see the advert you remember what each letter stands for and what to do if it happens. However, this marketing campaign, led to an increase of an extra 55% in calls to the emergency services, reporting a stroke, not all of which were correct [http://optimistworld.com]. Therefore this shows that it isn’t just private companies that market ideas to their consumers, and even though some of these calls aren’t correct, it has certainly forced a change in society as more people are aware of this, showing its pervasiveness across the private and public sector in terms of marketing.
However, there are some types of marketing to argue that marketing isn’t pervasive in today’s society. For example, de-marketing is known as “attempts to discourage customers in general or a certain class of customers in particular on either a temporary or permanent basis”, Phillips (1971) cited from [http://www.bukisa.com/article]. Therefore this means, de-marketing is completely the reverse from marketing, and normally results in decrease of prices and less advertising. Contemporary examples of this would include cigarette smoking as smoking adverts have been banned and cigarette machines have been banned. The BBC states that there is an upcoming advert being shown across the UK later this month, to show smokers that even though roll up cigarettes are bad, there are not as dangerous as packet cigarettes[http://www.bbc.co.uk/news] This shows that de-marketing isn’t pervasive because they are trying to decrease the demand of cigarettes smoked, which has obviously resulted in less advertisement. This means that consumers do not have a physiological stimulus with cigarettes, without an advert because there is not a particular picture or slogan to resemble its familiarity with. This has led to decrease of 26% of school trying cigarettes from 1983 till 2009 [https://www.keynote.co.uk]. Therefore, less advertisement of the product, will give consumers less knowledge of the brand, and will challenge customer loyalty, showing all marketing isn’t pervasive because de-marketing strategies are implemented to decrease the demand for something and in turn decreasing how popular, noticeable and spread out it is.
In conclusion, this essay suggests that marketing is pervasive in today’s society because marketing is a common activity across the globe and has been made easier by recent improvements in technology as mentioned above. Without marketing, companies would have no demand for their product and consumers would have no products for their own wants and needs. Therefore, it is clear to say, marketing is pervasive within society due to everyday activities such as social networking as companies can find out exactly what consumers want and how to target them with specific segment demands to create a certain product. All achieved with market research from the help of Facebook and Google. However, marketing is only pervasive to a certain extent because other marketing strategies such as de-marketing prove that not all marketing is linked to a behavioral stimulus or recognition of brands and in turn making it less spread out. Considering this, there are a lot more varied reasons why marketing is pervasive in everyday life rather than it not, because if it wasn’t spread out and around us all the time we would live a limited lifestyle with no high demand for change in society.
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