Friday, May 08, 2009

marketing: helping people buy?

According to Greg Verdino's blog (from a few weeks back but I'm playing catch up in google reader...) an unconfirmed source claims ' an early usage of the word, 'marketing' referred to a service that one person performed for another person'

So an offer to 'market for you' would mean exactly that. Go to the market and get your stuff for you. Or in todays terms 'I'm nipping out to the shops. Do you want anything?'

So marketing wasn't about helping a company sell. It was about helping people buy.

Greg explains:
'If you were particularly enterprising lad or lady you might have even found a way to earn your livelihood by marketing for others. Run out to the marketplace, pick up a few things for a few people, earn a pocketful of pence and -- voila -- you, my good sir, were a marketer.'

The way the web allows people to create and share content, thoughts, feelings and product/service reviews with friends and peers has resulted in a growing importance of word of mouth/mouse in the buying process, and its only going to get more important, as we all become 'marketers'.

To quote Seth:
'The future belongs to brands who can establish a foundation and process where fans can market to each other and ignite consumer networks.'

Figuring out how to reward this attention - from the customers who 'market' for you - then becomes a nice problem to have.

Bloke in the comments had a nice buddhist proverb to drop
'it is what we pay attention to that grows.'
- ie we should pay attention to customers first, because if they grow, we grow, our brand grows.

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