Stages in the evolution of marketing

As a discipline, marketing focuses on meeting consumer needs with available products and services. To some, marketing may seem like something that happens after a product is already available for purchase, but it is actually a research and development process that begins long before a product hits the shelves.

The marketing uses strategic principles and practices and the analysis and understanding of the perception of consumers and their behavior, segmentation, targeting, product positioning and brand building.

Marketing or marketing has evolved from its first concepts oriented to mass production and low cost, at the beginning of the industrial revolution, to reaching marketing oriented to sales, primitive and somewhat invasive advertising practices, whose vestiges still transcend today in day with digital, socially responsible and social media marketing.

From its origins as a concept of product and sale, the stages of the evolution of marketing include a set of behaviors mostly oriented towards the consumer.

We make a brief review of the stages of the evolution of marketing during the last 150 years.

Beginnings, production-oriented marketing

The marketing began as a means to produce as many goods in the most cost effective way possible; This conception was generated at the beginning of the industrial era and prevailed until the beginning of the 20th century.

Until the nineteenth century, everything was made by hand or “handmade”, with a high level of customization and high costs, the introduction of machines led to the reduction of costs to almost a tenth of the artisanal processes, which boosted consumption in the population. This behavior was appreciated by entrepreneurs who set about implementing practices to promote increasingly less expensive products.

With the conception of production-oriented marketing, entrepreneurs assumed that consumers bought products that were relatively cheap and easy to find.

The companies focused on creating marketing channels for their products at convenient points of sale. The main objective was to produce a large number of products at a low cost and wait for the mass markets to respond.

Production-oriented marketing is still prevalent in emerging and developing markets with low labor costs and some communist economy schemes.

Product Oriented Marketing

At the end of the 19th century, the conception of product-oriented marketing arises, under the belief that consumers buy articles that are superior. At the time, mass production still clashed with artisanal production: many producers set about satisfying the extravagances of a market that demanded quality.

This superiority can be achieved through higher levels of quality, quality control tools, productivity and innovation. The marketing – oriented product is a technique that is still widely used today, with the use of “comparative advertising” and market leaders introducing new inventions.

Sales-focused marketing

According to the Oxford School of Marketing, the focus on sales appeared around 1920, a decade in which the first sales promotion tactics and the “sales pitch” were emerging.

Selling is a stage in the evolution of marketing that associates this practice with aggressive salespeople, invasive telemarketers, and other somewhat unpleasant styles of advertising.

The marketing focus to sales of the idea that “consumers do not know what they want” and not buy products unless he instills a necessity; the selling concept focuses on making as much profit as possible by increasing sales volume and does not focus on the wishes of consumers.

It was brought about when industries came to produce much more than the market could absorb, so the solution was to “push sales.” Today, many companies use sales-oriented marketing when the quantity of goods produced exceeds market demand.

Marketing Orientation

For the Oxford School of Marketing, Orientation to Marketing appeared in 1950, when it became aware that products must obey consumer trends; this is how the first market studies appear.

The concept of Marketing Orientation focuses on discovering and responding to the needs of the consumer and companies produce what the market demands, instead of waiting for potential customers to buy what they do arbitrarily.

Research and development methods uncover consumer perceptions and needs; thus, companies design products that specifically meet those needs. Instead of distributing to the masses, companies focus on market segments with different sets of needs and preferences.

Under the “ marketing marketing ” approach, companies mainly focus on developing a product and fine-tuning its characteristics, based on the preferences and expectations of customers and consumers. Other marketing strategies, such as pricing, distribution, and promotion, follow that trend.

The idea behind the marketing concept is to create a long-term relationship between the company’s products and its customers.

Orientation to digital and social marketing

The latest stages in the evolution of marketing give interest to long-term relationships with customers; This is how relationship marketing appeared in the 90s, based on high standards of customer service, plans and loyalty programs.

Another recent nuance of marketing is socially responsible marketing, that is, concern for the environment and the impact of its products on society.

Finally, digital marketing corresponds to the last couple of decades, brought about by our current dependence on technologies and the internet; that is, it makes use of computer technologies to reach the public.

Thus, we have advertisements through web pages, such as the Google Ads service, coupled with traffic management through search engine positioning, social media marketing or social media marketing, among other practices so widely spread in the last years.