Basics of Marketing - Kotler Philip

The impact of marketing on society as a whole

The American marketing system is accused of condoning the spread of such "evils" of American society as excessive mercantilism, artificial desires, a lack of socially necessary goods, the erosion of culture, and the excessive political influence of business.

EXCESSIVE MERCANTILISM . Critics argue that the American system of entrepreneurship encourages excessive interest in fiction. People are judged not by what they represent, but by what they own. A person is not considered prosperous if he does not have a home in the suburbs, two cars, the most fashionable clothes and the newest electrical appliances.

However, something, perhaps, begins to change. Some Americans are beginning to lose the passion for acquisitions. They give more time to rest, games, learn to do less. This movement goes under the motto "A little is great" and "Less is more". More attention is paid to the establishment and development of close human relations and simple human pleasures, rather than "the pursuit of things."

ARTIFICIAL DESIRES . The addiction to things is not looked at as a person's natural mood, but as an aspiration created by Madison Avenue. Business hires Madison Avenue to stimulate people's passion for goods. To create examples of a good life on the basis of the luggage, Madison Avenue uses the media. Demonstrative consumption by some causes envy in others. To earn the necessary money, people begin to work harder. The purchases they make contribute to both the growth in output and the growth in the production capacity of American industry. In turn, industrial America is increasingly using the services of Madison Avenue to stimulate the desire to acquire everything that its industry produces. Therefore, people are seen as a link that links production and consumption and can be manipulated. Needs begin to be determined by what is being produced at the moment.

In this summary, business opportunities in creating or stimulating needs are probably exaggerated. In normal social conditions, people face a number of conflicting ways of life and choose one of them for themselves. In addition, people have natural defensive reactions against the impact on them of the media - selectivity of attention, perception, distortion and memorization. The media are most effective when they appeal to already existing needs, and do not try to create new ones. Moreover, people are looking for information regarding purchases of a more ambitious nature, and therefore do not rely on single sources of information. Even with small acquisitions that can be made under the influence of advertising appeals, repeated purchases will take place only if the performance properties of the product justify the consumer's expectations. Finally, a high percentage of market failures contradicts the assertion about the ability of firms to control demand.

If we look deeper, our needs and values ​​are influenced not only by market actors, but also by the family, people of the same circle, religion, our ethnic background and level of education. If Americans are too mercantile, it is only because the value system that they adhere to has developed during the fundamental processes of the formation of society, which in their significance are much deeper than the results of the influence of the system of entrepreneurship of the media.

LACK OF PUBLICLY NECESSARY GOODS . Business is accused of excessive stimulation of demand for goods for individual consumption (for example, cars) to the detriment of public goods (the roads on which these cars drive). The distribution of goods for individual use requires the availability of an appropriate volume of public services, which are usually not enough. According to economist John Kenneth Galbraith:

"The growth in the consumption of cars requires the offer of streets, highways, traffic control services and car parks that promote it. There is also a need for security-protective services from the police and road patrols and hospital services. Despite the fullest evidence of the need to maintain a balance in this area, the level of use of cars produced by private enterprises is sometimes much ahead of the level of supply of related public services. And as a result - horrific congestion on the roads, continuing from year to year a bloody massacre of impressive scale and chronic colitis of cities. "12

This is how Galbraith sees individual consumption, leading to a "social imbalance" and "social costs," which, it seems, are not adjusted to pay neither producers nor consumers. We need to find some way to restore the social balance between consumer goods and public goods. From manufacturing firms, one could demand the coverage of all social costs associated with their activities. With this approach, they could consider all these costs in the prices of their goods. And if the consumer finds that the commodity of individual consumption is not worth the price requested for it, the firm will disappear, and the released resources will find such an application that would cover both individual and social costs.

EROSION OF CULTURE . Critics argue that the marketing system carries with it the erosion of culture. The organs of human senses are constantly exposed to attacks from the side of advertising. Serious programs are interrupted by advertising inserts, printed materials are lost among the advertising bands, wonderful landscapes are disfigured by billboards. Advertising invasions continuously introduce into the minds of people thoughts about sex, power, prestige.

Entrepreneurs are responsible for these charges in raising the commercial hype as follows. First, they expect that their advertising appeals reach, first of all, the target audience. In connection with the use of mass communication channels, part of the ads willy-nilly reaches people who are not interested in a particular product and therefore experience feelings of boredom or irritation from advertising. Well, those who buy magazines addressed to their interests, such as "Vogue" or "Fortune", rarely complain about ads, because they advertise goods that are of interest to the buyer. Secondly, the ads provide freedom to commercial radio and television in their role of information dissemination tools and restrain the growth of prices for magazines and newspapers. The majority of the population considers inclusion in programs of advertising rollers very modest payment for all it.

EXTREME POLITICAL INFLUENCE OF BUSINESS . Another area of ​​criticism boils down to the fact that business has too much political power. There are "oil", "cigarette" and "automobile" senators, who defend the interests of specific industries to the detriment of the public interest. Business is accused of having too much power over the media, limiting their freedom to an independent and objective coverage of events. One of the critics says: "How can Life, Post and Reeders digests afford to tell the whole truth about the scandalously low nutritional value of most packaged food products ... if these are subsidized by advertisers like General Foods , "Kellogg", "Nabisco" and "General Mills"? The answer is that they can not and do not do this. "13

The American industry really defends and propagates its interests. She has the right to be represented in the Congress and the media, although her influence there may become excessive. Fortunately, many of the most expansive business interests that were considered untouchable were tamed in the light of the public interest. In 1911 the company Standard Oil was closed down, and after the exposure of Epton Sinclair, the meat processing industry was punished. Ralph Nader was the inspiration for legislation requiring automakers to make more safety elements in the design of cars, and by order of the US Chief Medical Officer, tobacco companies were obliged to put a warning on their cigarettes on their health. The media are increasingly publishing editorial materials designed to interest different segments of the market. The excessive power of business brings to life the forces of opposition in order to contain and neutralize its expansive interests.