When we talk about marketing, there are lot things that we should know first. Marketing is activities of creating value that desired by the potential buyers and receiving value from the potential buyers for the value that they have received. When marketers want to create something that has value to the potential buyers, marketers must know first, what do the potential buyers need or want.
As a marketer, it does not make any sense if we sell something that does not have value, or if the marketers want people to purchase something that they do not need of even want.
Marketers can not force anyone to do something. They can only ask them to buy their product or service. Some people might not care about what they are asking for. So, in the business of selling product or service, we know word “marketing”. Marketing is an art of identifying and meeting the people’s needs and wants. It is all about communication between two parties that profitable for the both sides by exchanging value.
Marketing is not that easy to do. As we know, we can not mess with the “free will” of the people around us or people that we see as the potential buyers. It is up to them if they are willing to buy the marketers’ products or service. In this case, the marketers have to do their marketing activities. Their job is to tell people that their product or service is suit with the people’s need or want. Therefore, the marketers have to know what do people need or want. How can the marketers find out about what the people need or want? They analyze the potential buyers. They have to collect data about the potential buyers. The data is all about their behavior and so on. Anything that can help the marketers to make the potential buyers recognize their product or service and tell them that they should buy it because it is something that they need or want. Products and services can not be created or even sold if people do not need or even want them. So, the data about the potential buyers’ behavior is important. When the marketers analyze the data, they can tell if their product or service is desirable or not.
In the marketing, we know “4p’s”. 4p’s are product, place, price, and promotion. First is product. It means that in order to make the potential buyers purchase the marketers’ product or service, they have to create a product or service that has desirable value. In another word, a useful product must be created for the potential buyers. Second is place. When the marketers want to sell their product or service, they have to consider the place also. Place that geographically potential to sell the product or service. Selling product or service at a wrong place can bring the marketers to the misery of loss. It can happen because place or environment can affect the ways of thinking or the behavior of the people in it. Different place means different need and want. Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) recognize the need of Indonesia people for chicken that being eaten with rice. So, unlike in the other countries, they sell not only fried chicken, but also rice in Indonesia. So, it is an important thing to consider the place to sell the product or service. Third is price. When the marketers sell their product or service, they have to set price that suit with their product or service.
For example, we can not sell T-shirt at a price of $10,000. It will make sense if what we sell is car. So, the marketers have to set the price based on the value they are offering to the potential buyers. Nowadays, discounts can make the product or service being purchased. Setting the lowest price to pull the potential buyers is becoming trend to many companies. The last one is promotion. Talking about promotion is all about sending message to the potential buyers. The message tells the potential buyers that they need or want the product or service. That is why they have to buy it to fulfill their need or want. Promotion can be in any forms. The product or service can be promoted in commercials, banners, and any other media. The message must reach the way of thinking of the potential buyers or even their heart. Whatever it takes to make them desire and purchase the product or service.
To sell the product or service, any marketers have to really consider about the 4 p’s. As we know, nowadays, people are independent and have their own thought. So, marketers have to think hard in order to reach a lot of people. But only reach people, but they also have to pull people to recognize and purchase the product or service. We can not avoid the fact, different person, different personality, different thought, and different perception. What the marketers think is not the same as the people think. The way people think is influenced by the environment or the society around them. Places with different cultures must have different kind of people. Culture influences people time after time. So, it is something that can not be easily erased or changed by any marketers. And people with different kind of family backgrounds and different kind of friends must have different perception or way of thinking. People or group around the potential buyer influence their way of thinking and sometimes help them to decide what do they need or want. So, any marketers can not underestimate the 4 p’s.
The needs and wants of the customers are differently created because of factors, such as cultural factors, social factors, and personal factors. First, cultural factors like the cultures around the customers create several certain needs and wants. Mostly, the culture in a country is different from the other countries. In a culture of a country, people have a different perception and way of thinking than people in the other country. It is a fundamental determinant of the marketers’ opportunities to enter the market. The second is social factors, such as reference group, family, role, and status. As we know, people around the customers are influence the way of thinking or perception and the behavior of the customers. We also know that people with different roles and status must have different needs and wants. For example, a person with a role as a governor needs a security. Unlike the common people who do not need any added security need. High status people usually purchase more than low status people. The high status people might need an expensive brand like Armani to show other people that they have a high status and power. Unlike the common people with middle to low status. They do not need more than a well known brand like Zara or something like that. As long as they are wearing an outfit that looks good on them.
The third one is personal factors, such as gender, age and life cycle, economic circumstances, and lifestyle. Gender is really matter to create needs and wants. Women and men have different perception and circumstances. Women routinely need cosmetic to make them look good. But men do not need any cosmetics. Age and life cycle of the customers determine their need. A person in age 1 up to 2 or in ‘baby’ life cycle needs nappies. But a girl in age 16 or in ‘teenager’ life cycle needs tampons. Economic circumstances of people are also determining what do they purchase. People with a good economic circumstance can recognize more needs and wants and purchase more than the other people. Next is lifestyle. It is obviously that lifestyles of the customer influence their behavior and they can also recognize their need and want.
Because of their lifestyle, people purchase different thing with the other people. Lifestyle is a person’s pattern of living in the world as expressed in activities, interests, and opinion. For example, mostly of the people with a healthy lifestyle do not purchase junk foods. They only purchase fresh foods. So, they basically create their need based on the way they are thinking and their own perceptions. We can think of marketing as a way of making sure the customers have the right types of product and service experiences to create the right brand knowledge structures and maintain them in the customers’ memory.
In practice, marketing is following the logical. First, marketers have to analyzing their opportunities, and then they have to select their target market. Market is a group of consumers or potential buyers. Marketers select the market which is desire their product or service, because they need or want it. Targeting market is about targeting people who do you think want to buy your product or experience your service.
In practicing marketing in the target market, marketers also have to consider the four dimension of SIVA. SIVA contains of solution, information, value, and access. These are the questions of the customers that are designed to be answered in order to make the benefit exchange between the customers and the marketers.
Solution : How can I solve this problem?
Information : Where can I learn more about it?
Value : What is my total sacrifice to get this solution?
Access : Where can I find it?
The dimensions above are the basic questions that must be answered by the marketers. So, to attract the customers, marketers must tell them that they can solve their problem. Somehow, the marketers must communicate with the customers and make them sure that the marketers are really care about their problem and also care to solve it. In communication, marketers not only make the customers recognize their care, but also recognize the capability of the marketers to help the customers. The marketing process cans not being processed without any push by any means from the customers. Marketers are developing the marketing plan by analyzing the customers’ behavior or customers’ environment first. Any strategies that created are basically reflected by the data of the customers and their environment.
Marketers communicate with customers in order to find out what do they need or what is their problem and tell them that marketers can fulfill it and also solve their problem. So, we can say that Marketing is reflect the needs and wants of the customers and happening in order to satisfy customers’ needs and wants. There is no way a company creates a useless product or service. There must be reasons and goal to reach when a company creates product or service. The marketing plan that developed by the marketers simply reflected by needs and wants of the customers. Marketing exist in order to satisfy the needs and wants of the customers.
There is another thought that say ‘Marketing shapes or create the need of the customers’. Some people might be agreed with the statement. There are a lot of marketers that have innovative and creative thinking who usually ‘think outside the box’. They make a new product and service. An unusual product or service that launched by the marketers. They promote them and tell the market that they should buy this for goodness sake. Because they need it. So, people simply think that marketing might shapes or even create the need of the customers. But there is something that we have to consider. They are creative and innovative marketers who basically just like the other marketers. They collect data from the customers and the environment around them and then transform it into useful information. But, they who think outside the box can recognize the ‘new need’ of the customer. So they create product or service based on their recognition. Product or service that the customers might do not think to need it but in the end, the customers hold on that product or service.
All we can say is that the marketers just recognize the ‘new need’ of the customers, but not create them. Who creates them are the customers themselves. For example, when they need communication, they have cable telephone. But, the marketers recognize that the cable telephone might not appropriate for people nowadays. So now there are cell phones. Portable phones are now become a basic need. People can not live without communicate with the other people by cell phones. The marketers found the ‘new need’ just by analyzing the customers and the environment. But, the customers are basically creating them time after time. Marketing is about recognize the existing problem or even the new problem of the customers and tell the customers that they can solve it by their product or service. It is all about satisfying the customers’ need and want to gain value from them too.