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  M RKiTING  s by Philip Kotler ãJ  :>  ri The  ajor Tasks of  arketing anagement Eight different  types  of demand situationsdictate marketing  strategy.   he popular image of the mar-keter is that he is a profes-sional whose joh is to createand maintain demand forsomething. Unfortunately,this is too limited a view of the range ofmarketing challenges he faces. In fact, itcovers only two of eight important anddistinct marketing tasks. Each task callsfor a special type of problem-solvingbehavior and a specific blend of market-ing concepts.Marketing management may beviewed generically as the problem ofregulating the level, timing, and charac-ter of demand for one or more productsof an organization. The organization isassumed to form an idea of a desiredlevel of demand based on profit maxi-mization, sales maximization subject toa profit constraint, satisficing, the cur-rent or desired level of supply, or someother type of analysis.The current demand level may bebelow, equal to, or above the desireddemand level. Four specific demandstates make up underdemand: negativedemand, no demand, latent demand, andfaltering demand. Two specific demandstates make up adequate demand: irregu-lar demand and full demand. Finally,two demand states make up overde-mand: overfull demand and unwhole-some demand.These eight demand states are distin-guished primarily with respect to thelevel of current demand in relation todesired demand; although two additionalfactors, the timing of demand irregulardemand) and the character of demand EXECUTIVE  BRIEFING I n each issue of  Marketing Management we reprint an article froma past issue of our sister publication the  Journal of Marketing.  Thisedited version of an article by Philip Kotler published in October 1973 identifies eight different marketing tasks each arising out of aunique state of demand. Kotler is the S.C. Johnson and Son Distin-guished Professor of International Marketing at the Kellogg GraduateSchool of Management Northwestern University.  unwholesome demand), are also impor-tant. The set of demand situations isfairly exhaustive and the order fairlycontinuous.Each demand situation gives rise to aspecific marketing task. Negativedemand results in attempts to disabuseit; no demand, in attempts to create it;latent demand, in attempts to develop it;and so on.All of these tasks require a manageri-al approach consisting of analysis, plan-ning, implementation, organization, andcontrol. Furthermore, they all utilize thetwo basic steps of marketing strategydevelopment: defining the target mar-kets and formulating a marketing mixout of the elements of product, price,promotion, and place.In these respects, all of marketingmanagement has a unity, a core theory.At the same time, the eight tasks are notidentical. They involve or emphasizedifferent variables, different psychologi-cal theories, different managerial apti-tudes. Negative Demand N egative demand might be definedas a state in which all or most ofthe important segments of thepotential market dislike the product and,in fact, might conceivably pay a price toavoid it.Negative demand, far from being a   Vol 2Jo M RKETING  MAmeiHEHT  rare condition, applies to a rather largenumber of products and services. Vege-tarians feel negative demand for meatsof all kinds. Some Jews and Arabs feelnegative demand for pork. People havea negative demand for vaccinations,dental work, vasectomies, and gall blad-der operations. A large number of trav-elers have a negative demand for railtravel. Places such as the North Pole anddesert wasteland are in negative demandby travelers. Atheism, ex-convicts, mili-tary service, and even work are in nega-tive demand by various groups.The challenge of negative demand tomarketing management, especially inthe face of a positive supply, is to devel-op a plan that will cause demand even-tually to equal the positive supply level.We call this marketing task that of con-versionai marketing.Conversionai marketing is one ofthetwo most difficult marketing tasks amarketer might face (the other is coun-termarketing). The marketer's chief taskis to analyze the sources of the market'sresistance, whether they lie largely inbeliefs about the object, in the valuestouched upon by the object, in the rawfeelings engendered by the object, or inthe cost of acquiring the object.If the beliefs are misfounded, theycan be clarified through a communica-tion program. If the person's values mil-itate against the object, the object can beput in the framework of other possiblevalues that are positive for the person. Ifnegative feelings are aroused, they maybe modifiable through group processesor behavioral therapy. If the costs ofacquisition are too high, the marketercan take steps to bring down the realcosts. The marketer will want to consid-er the cost of reducing resistance andwhether some other marketing opportu-nity might be more attractive and lessdifficult. No Demand   here is a whole range of objectsand services for which there is nodemand. No demand is a state inwhich all or important segments of apotential market are uninterested orindifferent to a particular object.Three different categories of objectsare characterized by no demand. First,there are those familiar objects that areperceived as having no value. Exampleswould be urban junk such as disposableCoke bottles, old barbed wire, and polit-ical buttons after the election.Second, there are those familiar newobjects that are recognized to have valuebut not in the particular market. Exam-ples would include boats in areas notnear any water, snowmobiles in areaswhere it never snows, and burglaralarms in areas where there is no crime.Third, there are those new unfamiliarobjects that face a situation of nodemand because the relevant market hasno knowledge of the object. Examplesinclude trinkets of all kinds that peoplemight buy if exposed to them, but do notnormally think about or desire.The task of converting no demandinto positive demand is called stimula-tional marketing. Stimulational market- Stimulational  m rketing has drawn  consider ble attack from  soci l  critics ing is a tough task, and the marketer canproceed in three ways. One is to try toconnect the object with some existingneed in the marketplace. Thus, antiquedealers can attempt to stimulate interestin old barbed wire on the part of thosewho have a general need to collectthings.The second is to alter the environ-ment so that the object becomes valuedin that environment. Thus, sellers ofmotor boats can attempt to stimulateinterest in boats in a lakeless communityby building an artificial lake. The thirdis to distribute information or the objectitself in more places in the hope thatpeople's lack of demand is really only alack of exposure.Stimulational marketing has drawnconsiderable attack from social critics.Since the consumer had no demand (noteven latent), the marketer has intrudedinto his life as a manipulator, a propa-gandist, an exploiter. The target grouphad no interest in the object until themarketer, using the whole apparatus ofmodern marketing, seduced or bam-boozled the consumer into a purchase.Two things, however, must be said indefense of stimulational marketing. Thebuyer does not buy because he is forcedor coerced by the seller. He buysbecause he sees the transaction as creat-ing more value for him than avoiding it.The basic need is not manufactured bythe marketer. At most, it is stimulated.activated, given a direction and objectfor expression.The nonintervention thesis becomesmore difficult in light of the positivebenefits that stimulational marketing canconfer. Stimulational marketing appliesto efforts to get villagers in developingnations to take immunization shots toprotect them from dreadful diseases;farmers to adopt better means of farm-ing; mothers to improve their child-rear-ing practices; and teenagers to improvetheir nutritional habits.Stimulational marketing also isresponsible for accelerating the adoptionof many material inventions for whichthere was no initial market interest.Altogether, a blanket condemnation ofstimulational marketing would consignmany positive developments, along withthe negative ones, to a state of limbo. Latent Demand A state of latent demand existswhen a substantial number ofpeople share a strong need forsomething which does not exist in theform of an actual product. This repre-sents an opportunity for the marketinginnovator to develop the product thatpeople have been wanting.Examples of products and services inlatent demand abound. A great numberof cigarette smokers would like a good-tasting cigarette that does not yieldnicotine and tars damaging to health.Such a product breakthrough would bean instant success, just as the first filter-tip cigarette won a sizable share of themarket.Many people would like a car thatpromised substantially more safety andsubstantially less pollution than existingcars. There is a strong latent demand forfast city roads, efficient trains, uncrowd-ed national parks, unpolluted majorcities, safe streets, and good televisionprograms. When such products are final-ly developed and properly marketed,their market is assured.The latent demand situation mightseem not so much a problem in demandmanagement as one in supply manage-ment. Yet, it is thoroughly a marketingproblem because the latent need must berecognized, the right product developed,the right price chosen, the right channelsof distribution put together, and ade-quate and convincing product informa-tion disseminated.Such products as electric dishwashers M R nm  mmEMEHT ã .  2 No.  3  53  and air conditioners were adopted slow-ly at first because people were not con-vinced that these products could do thejob or were worth the price.The process for effectively convert-ing latent demand into actual demand isthat of developmental marketing. Themarketer must be an expert in identify-ing the prospects for the product whohave the strongest latent demand and incoordinating all the marketing functionsso as to develop the market in an order-ly way. In contrast to the substantialsocial criticism directed at stimulationalmarketing, most observers feel thatdevelopmental marketing is not onlynatural but highly desirable from asocial point of view.There is, however, one importantqualification that has come to the sur-face in recent years. The sheer exis-tence of a personal need may not besufficient to justify its being served andsatisfied. There are needs that peoplehave which, if satisfied, are harmful toothers or themselves through spillovereffects of consumption. Satisfyingthose needs may hurt a lot of people sinterests.Thus, it is not sufficient for a devel-opmental marketer to say that his newproduct is justified because there is realneed for it. He may have to show thatthe need is salutary and the product willnot lead to more social harm than pri-vate good. Faltering Demand A ll kinds of products, services,places, organizations, and ideaseventually experience decliningor faltering demand. Faltering demandis a state in which the demand for aproduct is less that its former level andwhere further decline is expected in theabsence of remedial efforts to revise thetarget market, product, and/or market-ing efforts.For example, the natural fur industryis in deep trouble today as demanddeclines in the face of the trend towardmore casual living, the emergence ofartificial furs, and the attacks of ecolo-gists who see the fur industry as preyingon endangered species.Railway travel has been a service insteady decline for a number of years,and it is badly in need of imaginativeremarketing. Many grand hotels haveseen their clientele thin out in the faceof competition from bright new hotelswith modern, though somewhat asep- tic,  facilities.The downtown areas of many largecities are in need of remarketing. Manypopular entertainers and political candi-dates lose their following and badlyneed remarketing.The challenge of faltering demand isrevitalization, and the marketing taskinvolved is remarketing. Remarketing isbased on the premise that it is possiblein many cases to start a new life cycle  emarketing  calls fora  thorough reconsideration ofthe  target  market product features and  current marketing program. for a declining product. It is the searchfor new marketing propositions for relat-ing the product to its potential market.Remarketing calls for a thoroughreconsideration of the target market,product features, and current marketingprogram. The question of the appropri-ate target market is faced, for example,by a grand old hotel in Southern Califor-nia whose clientele was formerly aristo-cratic and is now moving toward thecomfortable middle class. Still the hotelcontinues to try to attract its old clien-tele and to base its services and priceson this target market—an approach thatneither attracts them back nor succeedsin building up the new clientele to itstrue potential.The task of revising product featuresis faced by Amtrak, the corporationcharged with revitalizing railway pas-senger travel. Amtrak s initial tempta-tion was to carry on a massive advertis-ing campaign to get people to try thetrains again. However, this would havebeen fatal because it would have shownpeople how really bad trains and trainservice have become.It is a marketing axiom that thefastest way to kill a bad product is toadvertise it. This accelerates the rate ofnegative word-of-mouth that finally putsthe death knell on the product. Amtrakwisely decided that mass advertisingshould come after product improvement.A sharp distinction must be drawnbetween cosmetic marketing, which triesto advertise a new image without revis-ing the product, and remarketing, whichcalls for a thorough reconsideration andrevision of all aspects of the product andmarketing that may affect sales.In some ways it might be chargedthat the skilled remarketer serves toslow down progress by trying to pre-serve the weaker species in the face ofstronger competitors. There is sometruth to this in that the product in falter-ing demand would probably disappearor stagnate in the absence of creativemarketing respiration.In some situations, perhaps the orga-nization simply should take steps toadjust the supply downward to matchthe demand. On the other hand, whenthe faltering demand is due to poor mar-keting premises and not to naturalforces, able remarketing can make amajor contribution to saving the organi-zation s assets. Irregular Demand V ery often an organization mightbe satisfied with the averagelevel of demand but quite dissat-isfied with its temporal pattern. Someseasons are marked by demand surgingfar beyond the supply capacity of theorganization, and other seasons aremarked by a wasteful underuse of theorganization s supply capacity.Irregular demand is defined as a statein which the current timing pattern ofdemand is marked by seasonal orvolatile fluctuations that depart from thetiming pattern of supply.Many examples of irregular demandcan be cited. In mass transit, much ofthe equipment is idle during the off-hours and in insufficient supply duringthe peak hours. Hotels in Miami Beachare insufficiently booked during the off-seasons and overbooked during the peakseasons. Museums are undervisited dur-ing the weekdays and overcrowded dur-ing the weekends. Hospital operatingfacilities are overbooked at the begin-ning of the week and underutilizedtoward the end of the week to meetphysician preferences.A less common version of the irregu-lar demand situation is where supplyalso is variable and, in fact, fluctuates ina perverse way in relation to demand.Legal aid is more available to the poorin the summer (because of law studentson vacations) but more in demand in the   Vol 2Jo 3 U RKHING mmeEMENT  winter. Where demand and supply areboth variable and move in oppositedirections, the marketer has the optionto attempt to (I) alter the supply patternto fit the demand pattern, (2) alter thedemand pattern to fit the natural supplypattern, or (3) alter both to some degree.The marketing task of trying toresolve irregular demand is called syn-chromarketing because the effort is tobring the movements of demand andsupply into better synchronization.Many marketing steps can be taken toalter the pattern of demand. For exam-ple, the marketer may promote new usesand desires for the product in the off-season, as can be seen in Kodak'sefforts to show camera users that pic-ture-taking is fun on many occasionsbesides Christmas time and summervacation.The marketer can charge a higherprice in the peak season and a lowerprice in the off-season. This strategy isused in the sale of seasonal items suchas air conditioners, boats, and ski equip-ment. Or the marketer can advertisemore heavily in the off-season than inthe peak season, although this is still nota common practice.In some cases, the pattern of demandwill be readily reshaped through simpleswitches in incentives or promotion; inother cases, the reshaping may beachieved only after years of patienteffort to alter habits and desires, if at all. Full Demand   he most desirable situation that aseller can face is that of fulldemand. Full demand is a state inwhich the current level and timing ofdemand is equal to the desired level andtiming. Various products and servicesachieve this condition from time to time,but it is not a time for resting on one'slaurels and doing simply automatic mar-keting.Market demand is subject to two ero-sive forces that might suddenly or grad-ually disrupt the equilibrium betweendemand and supply. One force is chang-ing needs and tastes in the marketplace.The demand for barber services, engi-neering educations, and mass magazinesall have undergone major declinesbecause of changing market preferences.The o'ther force is active competition.A condition of full demand is a signalinviting competitive attack. When a newproduct is doing well, new suppliersquickly move in and attempt to attractaway some of the demand.Thus, the task of the marketer in theface of full demand is maintenance mar-keting. The task is not as challenging asother marketing tasks, such as conversa-tional marketing or remarketing, inwhich creative new thinking must begiven to the future of the product.However, maintenance marketingdoes call for maintaining efficiency inthe carrying out of day-to-day marketingactivities and eternal vigilance in moni-toring possible new forces threatening  emarketing may be highly justified in  some  situationsand  ethically  dubiousin others demand erosion. The maintenance mar-keter is primarily concerned with tacti-cal issues such as keeping the priceright, keeping the sales force and dealersmotivated, and keeping tight controlover costs. Overfull Demand   ometimes the demand for a productsubstantially begins to outpace thesupply. Known as overfull demand,it is defined as a state in which demandexceeds the level at which the marketerfeels able or motivated to supply it. It isessentially the reverse of falteringdemand.The task of reducing overfull demandis called demarketing. More formally,demarketing deals with attempts to dis-courage customers in general or a certainclass of customers in particular on eithera temporary or permanent basis.There are two major types of demar-keting situations: general demarketingand selective demarketing. Generaldemarketing is undertaken by a sellerwhen he wants to discourage overalldemand for his product. This can arisefor two quite different reasons. First, hemay have a temporary shortage of goodsand wants to get buyers to reduce theirorders.This situation was faced by EastmanKodak when it introduced its Instamaticcamera in the early 1960s and faced run-away demand; by Wilkinson Sword inthe early 1960s when dealers besieged itfor the new stainless steel blade; and byAnheuser-Busch in the late '60s when itcould not produce enough beer to satisfydemand.Second, the seller's product may suf-fer from chronic overpopularity, and hemay want to discourage permanentlysome demand rather than increase thesize of his plant. This situation is facedby small restaurants that suddenly are discovered, but the owners do not wantto expand; by the John F. Kennedy Cen-ter of the Arts in Washington, whichdraws larger crowds than it can handleresulting in vandalism, damage to theproperty, and high cleaning bills; by cer-tain tourist places, such as Hawaii, wherethe number of tourists has become exces-sive in terms ofthe objective of achiev-ing a restful vacation; and by the GoldenGate Bridge in San Francisco, whereauthorities are urging motorists to reducetheir use of the bridge. U.S.  electric power companies aredemarketing certain uses of electricitybecause of the growing shortage ofpower generation facilities. Several ofthe far Western states are activelydemarketing themselves as places to livebecause they are becoming overcrowded.Selective demarketing occurs when anorganization does not wish to reduceeveryone's demand but rather thedemand coming from certain segmentsof the market. These segments or cus-tomer classes may be considered rela-tively unprofitable in themselves orundesirable in terms of their impact onother valued segments of the market. Theseller may not be free to refuse sales out-right, either as a matter of law or of pub-lic opinion, so he searches for othermeans to discourage demand from theunwanted customers.Many examples could be cited. A lux-ury hotel that primarily caters to middle-aged, conservative tourists resorts toselective means to discourage marginalapplicants because of all the paper workand the wish to avoid rejecting so manyapplicants and creating bad feelings.A prepaid medical group practicewants to discourage its hypochondriacpatients from running to them with everyminor ailment, A police departmentwants to discourage nuisance calls sothat its limited resources can be devotedto major crime prevention,Demarketing largely calls for market-ing in reverse. Prices may be raised, andproduct quality, service, promotion, andconvenience reduced. The demarketer M Rmm MMGEMENT Vol.  2 No. 3  
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