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Marketing Definition and Importance in Business


The American Marketing Association defines marketing as the process, institutions and activities that create, communicate, exchange offerings and deliver value to clients, partners, consumers or society in general. Additionally, the latter group believes that at the center of marketing is the need to satisfy individual or organizational goals. This means that marketing itself should be considered as an exchange of ideas through adequate planning and execution of pricing, promotion, creation and distributions of products or services. In this definition, it is essential to note that there are a number of components of marketing that will scarcely change with time and these include the need for products and services and their availability, the existence of a certain price for a certain product, the need to get those products or services to the client and the need to inform them about these offerings. These are the foundational aspects that make marketing what it is. (American Marketing Association, 2008).

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On the other hand, the American heritage dictionary defines marketing in two ways. It is the summation of all the functions used in getting goods or services from the producer and the consumer. Secondly, the latter reference also defines marketing as the technique or the process of selling, promoting, distributing and selling a product or service. It should be noted that in this definition, marketing is seen as a combination of entities and not just a series of tactics. It is a holistic concept that forms the core of any business. (American Heritage Dictionary, 2000).

Importance of marketing in organizational success

As it can be seen these definitions reflect similar messages, therefore even if the words or phrases are different, the meaning of marketing as a concept is essentially the same. What has actually changed and will continue to do so is the business landscape. Now competition has grown to cut throat levels thus necessitating the need to adopt a series of strategies to survive. Sound marketing has always entailed identification of a strategy, development of that strategy and tactical implementation. This approach has worked in the past and continues to do so today.

Marketing is a crucial component in ensuring organizational success. This is because of several reasons. First of all, marketing tells the world or one’s potential consumers that one’s company exists and that it can provide the means with which to satisfy those consumer’s needs. In other words, it promotes a company, institution or any business entity. This means that marketing plays the role of informing the public about one’s being. In line with this is the fact that it also tells them about the range of products and services offered by that corporation. Marketing ensures that individuals know what one does. The latter situation normally applies to those companies that are new in the market. However, for well known names, marketing can be useful in informing consumers about new service or product offerings. By doing all these, then a company may be well on their way to differentiating themselves from their competitors and thus making them truly successful.

Guinness is another example of how marketing can be useful in differentiating a company from its competitors. This was especially necessary after the Irish home market for Guinness had started slowing down. The company embarked on an ambitious program geared towards restoring the historic significance for Guinness amongst its Irish consumers. It achieved this by building a Guinness storehouse in a former brewing complex. The facility allowed consumers to view the history of Guinness while at the same time enjoy their drinks and interact with other veterans in the market. By doing this, the company set itself apart as a historic yet entertaining brand for both the old and young consumers.

Marketing also plays a crucial role in defining as well implementing one’s corporate strategy. This means that it can therefore be possible for companies to align consumer needs with organizational goals and this is an important characteristic for any respectable company. Dev & Schultz, 2007).

An example of how marketing has revolutionized business is in proctor and gamble’s approach. In 2002, this company’s sales had plummeted thus necessitating the need for a change in business strategy. It rarely made room for trying out new marketing approaches but such a significant loss prompted a reexamination of its former methods. In this regard, the company opted to create a forum that would allow it to listen to their consumers’ voices. This was possible through the internet which allowed clients to suggest products that P&G should make. This forum also provided a unique opportunity for the company to test new products in the market before stocking them up in supermarkets or other stores. The latter approach has produced substantial results for the company and has put it back in the map as a reputable and profitable organization. One can therefore assert that Proctor and Gamble were able to execute a strategy to make them more consumer friendly through marketing.

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Through marketing, it is also possible for businesses to create and expand professional networks. This element is highly useful in the current business environment where monopolistic tendencies are reducing drastically and where competition has become the order of the day. In line with the latter assertion is the fact that marketing reflects industry trends and thus serves as an indicator of whether an organization is abreast with recent developments. (Dev & Schultz, 2007).


It can be said that no matter how effective or efficient a company’s products are, that company cannot be worth its salt without marketing. This is the channel that creates profits for organizations.


American Heritage Dictionary. (2000). Definition of marketing. New York: Houghton Miffin Publishers

American Marketing Association. (2008). American Marketing Association to update its definition of marketing. 2009. Web.

Dev, C. & Schultz, D. (2007). A customer focused approach can bring one’s marketing mix in the 21st century. Journal of marketing management, 14(1): 57.

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