Functions of Marketing
The ultimate aim of marketing is exchange of goods and services from producers to consumers in a way that maximizes the satisfaction of customer’s needs. Marketing functions start from identifying the consumer needs and end with satisfying the consumer needs. The universal functions of marketing involve buying, selling, transporting, storing, standardizing and grading, financing, risk taking and securing marketing information. However, modern marketing has some other functions such as gathering the market info and analyzing that info. Market planning and strategy formation. To assist in product designing and development also comes under the marketing functions. The marketing functions have been discussed here briefly:
To identify the needs, wants and demands of the consumers and then analyzing the identified information to arrive at various decisions for the successful marketing of a firm’s products and services is one of the most important functions of marketing. The analysis involves judging the internal weaknesses and strengths of the organization as well politico-legal, social and demographic data of the target market. This information is further used in market segmentations.
Market-planning aims at achieving a firm’s marketing objectives. These objectives may involve increasing market presence, dominate the market or increase market share. The market planning function covers aspects of production levels, promotions and other action programmes.
The buying and selling are the exchange functions of marketing. They ensure that a firm’s offerings are available in sufficient quantities to meet customer demands. The exchange functions are supported by advertising, personal selling and sales promotions.
Product Designing and development
The product design helps in making the prodyct attractive to the target market. In today’s competitive market environment not only cost matters but also the product design, suitability, shape, style etc. matter a lot in taking production decisions.
The physical distribution functions of marketing involve transporting and storing. The transporting function involve moving products from their points of production to locations convenient for purchasers and storing function involve the warehousing products until needed for sale.
Standardization and Grading
Standardization involves producing goods at predetermined specifications. Standardization ensures that product offerings meet established quality and quantity. It helps in achieving uniformity and consistency in the output product. Grading is classification of goods in various groups based upon certain predetermined characteristics. It involves the control standards of size, weight etc. Grading helps in pricing decisions also. The higher quality goods and services attract higher prices.
The financing functions of marketing involve providing credit for channel members or consumers.
Risk taking is one of the important marketing functions. Risk taking in marketing refers to uncertainty about consumer purchases resulting from creation and marketing of goods and services that consumers may purchase in future.
Packaging, labeling and branding
Packaging involves designing package for the products, labeling means putting information required / specified on a product’s covering. Packaging and labeling serve as promotional tools now a days, Branding distinguishes the generic commodity name to a brand name. For example, Wheat Flour is a generic name of a commodity while “Ashirvad Aata” is a brand name. In service industry, also branding matters a lot.
Customer support is a very important function of marketing. It involves pre sales counseling, after sales service, handling the customer complaints and adjustments, credit services, maintenance services, technical services and consumer information. For example, water purifier comes with an onsite service warranty of 7 years helps in marketing and is an important marketing function as well.