The Concept Of Marketing Management: Needs, Wants And Demands

Categories: Customer

The concept of marketing can be traced back to the beginning of mankind and civilisation. Transitioning from a basic exchange to the modern-day networking environment, the essence of marketing lies in basic concepts and foundations and their relation to customer value. A market itself is the set of all actual and potential buyers of a product, who share a particular need or want that can be satisfied through an exchange process. (Kotler, 1969) And it is through a market that the need for marketing was brought about.

Originally derived as a by-product of sales focused businesses, marketing has developed into an important part of gaining revenue and profit and is arguably the cornerstone of an organisations success in their industry. When simplified marketing can be broken down into a few key abstractions and philosophies which can be outlined through the Peter Alexander business model.


The need for a product is an essential notion for marketing, without a need there is no desire for a product at all, defined as a state of felt deprivation, the aim of marketing is to reduce this need by providing the desired good or service (Kotler, 1969) There are five basic needs that have been explored and discussed since their penning in “A Theory of Human Motivation,” Physiological, Safety, Belonging, Esteem and Self Actualisation ( Maslow, 1943).

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This can be seen in Peter Alexanders marketing strategy, as they cater to the first and foremost physiological needs that we have. The niche market of pyjamas stem from a desire to be warm and clothed, however is can also be argued that the design of such clothing represents a more esteem-based need, as it is providing a sense of accomplishment and status to the wearer.

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The fashion statement that the clothing creates for their market demographic can also be more accurately categorised into a want, the next fundamental concept of marketing.


A marketer does not create need, they create want (Kotler, 1969) As mentioned previously, Maslow’s Hierarchy has been a staple concept in the business world for years and has proven to be the summation for all needs, therefore a marketer or marketing team cannot generate new needs to cater to, they instead must cater to the existing needs by producing products that play into the wants of their demographic. Peter Alexander does this with their target audience of men and women of ages 19-39 (Hall, 2018) by catering to their want for visually pleasing and comfortable designer brand sleepwear, the usage of certain fabrics, colours and advertising when applied and shaped by culture/individuals grow a sense of want from the consumers.


A want becomes a demand when the person is able and willing to buy the object he or she desires (Kotler, 1969). A demand is derived from a want, when the want becomes an object of desire that the customer is able and willing to buy it is in demand. Demands differ in that, the buyer must have enough money to buy the desired product, then they ultimately demand it, if unable to purchase their desired product it simply remains as a want. If Peter Alexander has a $50 pair of slippers and the customer has $100 in their pocket, since they can afford the merchandise, it is in demand. In contrast, if they only had $20 in their pocket the slippers would remain a want, as they are unable to buy the object of desire.


Customer value is the focal point of marketing, from a customer point of view it is the benefits that are gained in relation to a sacrifice. This can be broken down into four basic sections; the functionality, experiential and symbolic value in contrast to the sacrifice. (Smith & Colgate, 2007) In relation to Peter Alexander, each section can be illustrated by different sectors of the organization, these typologies can help firm a better understanding of the value creation process marketers take.


The functionality of peter alexanders sleepwear is determined by three factors, its accuracy in function or ability to have correct attributes, its performance and finally its ability to provide appropriate outcomes. Without functionality a product cannot perform successfully, if Peter Alexander sold pyjamas that did not accurately function and were missing certain attributes such as buttons or didn’t provide to the customers need; comfortable sleeping clothes, then the customer would not value the clothing, then they would not create customer value.


Customer value is also increased if the product or company can provide benefits in the consumer’s emotional, sensory, epistemic and social relation. The way in which a customer interacts or feels when interacting with products can add value to their experience. The vanilla bean smell that is used in all Peter Alexander stores for example convey an atmosphere that has been specifically designed to make customers relax and correlate their positive experiences with the company. This example shows how a simple use of scent can allow a business to provide consumers with experiential value.


If the product a company is marketing benefits the self-identity, self-expression or has personal meaning to the consumer, then they will provide symbolic value. The value consumers place in the meaning of a product is highly influential in their choice of product, if a brand is providing the same item yet their competitor is using a luxury fabric the consumer will find a higher level of value for the luxury fabric as it portrays a larger income. This customer value framework is often accomplished with branding and logos, exemplified with Peter Alexander’s sausage dog motifs.


In contrast to the last three sections of customer value, the cost and sacrifice is what the customer is deliberating to give up regarding the possible gains the product will give, the challenge for marketers, is to identify the range of benefits that will lead to the customers sacrificing for their product. Cost can be broken down into four sections, economic, psychological, personal investment and risk. Economic sacrifice is the money involved in a transaction. Where former section is more concrete the latter three sections like psychological sacrifice are more abstract. Psychological–relational costs include cognitive difficulty/ stress, conflict, search costs, learning costs, psychological switching costs, and psychological relationship costs, such as attachment (Smith & Colgate, 2007). In order to minimize the personal investment that customers spend during the buying process such as the time, effort, and energy consumers devote to the purchase and consumption process, organisations like Peter Alexander develop techniques to reduce these stresses. The vanilla scent used in stores is an added stress reliever to relax shoppers and create a less abusive experience, this as well as their use of soft textured fabrics and light music all play a part in reducing perceived risk and ease the economical spending of customers.


The link that can be drawn between customer value and marketing as a whole, is that customer value is a goal and aim of marketing. Marketing inherently is the “process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably" (Marketing and the 7Ps, 2015). Importance is stressed on the process of satisfying the customer, which in turn will benefit the business via profit and revenue. In order to identify customer’s value points businesses usually use specific market research, those of which, are based on the foundational concepts of marketing. Therefore, customer value and marketing are linked in their objective of allowing organisations to provide to the demand of target markets with satisfaction in mind.

A modern example is a corporation such as Peter Alexander, and their marketing team, which would make use of these abstractions through the foundational ideas of marketing; needs, wants and demands, in an attempt to gain an insight to their target audience and create value and benefit for their customers. Peter Alexander must ensure that they are meeting one or all the value frameworks; functional, experiential, emotional and sacrifice reduction, so that they can create satisfaction to customers. The clothing and accessories that Peter Alexander sells must identify and cater to the target audiences need for clothing, want for colourful branded sets and the demand that comes about as a result of the middle-class salary. Then, to create value these must be met by delivering a product that addresses these needs at the time customers want it, and in a manner that reduces any assessable risks. Selling their branded leisure wear, made from durable material in a stress reducing atmosphere; vanilla scented rooms with soft textures, at affordable costs achieves all the marketing concepts while providing value to customers.

It is in this fashion that marketing and customer value are integral to the success of an organisation

Updated: Feb 02, 2024
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The Concept Of Marketing Management: Needs, Wants And Demands. (2024, Feb 02). Retrieved from

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