Think of marketing as everything that touches your customer

It is a common perception that ‘marketing’ is simply advertising – print adverts, TV adverts, competitions in magazines – all that pretty stuff. It is not surprising that this view is held, since even some of the people working in marketing, as marketing managers in fact, have roles wholly dedicated to this side of the discipline.
Of course all of these things ARE marketing, however, I subscribe to a different point of view, one that is borne out of my marketing training in some of the most successful branded businesses in the world. In the fast moving consumer goods industry (FMCG) those in marketing do ‘brand management’ – they run the ‘brand’ like a little business. And this means that they manage every aspect of that brand… the pricing, how it looks, what it is called, how it tastes/works, AND the communications about it. Subcribing to this school of thought defines marketing as encompassing every part of your business or product that touches your customer or consumer.
This perspective can be particularly useful to those of us launching new brands and businesses, as it puts your customer at the very heart of everything that you do, making you more likely to succeed. In global branded businesses new innovation is planned and developed in such a way that every aspect of that product is created with the customer in mind – from where to buy it, right through to what you say about it.
A start-up should be no different – using the same approaches you can create a winning product by thinking of your ideal customer every step of the way. My friend and founder of Moma breakfasts present the perfect example of this done well: Tom knew his ideal customers were those busy commuters in train stations, and so he did not rest until he could sell his healthy breakfasts on carts in train stations, just at breakfast time. Tom made major strategic decisions about his business based on what was right for his potential customers – and he has a winning business model as a result.
Written by Christina at The Nurture Network: The on-demand marketing department for start-ups and entrepreneurs – making expertise and resource available just when it is needed.