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All About Marketing

Sections of This Topic Include

Basics and Planning

Basics -- and Misunderstanding -- About Marketing (below on this page)
Market Planning

Inbound Marketing

Marketing Research
Competitive Analysis
Positioning (including writing your positioning statement)
Naming and Branding

Outbound Marketing

Advertising and Promotions
Public and Media Relations
Customer Service
Customer Satisfaction
Social Networking

Protecting Ownership of Your Products/Services

Intellectual Property

Evaluating Your Marketing Efforts

Evaluating Your Marketing and Advertising Activities

Marketing On Telephone and/or Online

Email Marketing
Social Networking
Online Reputation Management

General Resources

Additional Perspectives on the Basics of Marketing
Additional Information for Nonprofits
General Resources About Marketing

Also consider
Related Library Topics

Learn More in the Library's Blogs Related to Marketing

In addition to the articles on this current page, also see the following blogs that have posts related to Marketing. Scan down the blog's page to see various posts. Also see the section "Recent Blog Posts" in the sidebar of the blog or click on "next" near the bottom of a post in the blog. The blog also links to numerous free related resources.

Library's Marketing Blog
Library's Public and Media Relations Blog

Basics -- and Misunderstandings -- About Marketing

© Copyright Carter McNamara, MBA, PhD

What is Marketing?

Before you learn more about marketing in the many links later on below topic, you should first understand what marketing is, because the topic is so often misunderstood. Marketing is the wide range of activities involved in making sure that you're continuing to meet the needs of your customers and are getting appropriate value in return.

How Marketing is So Misunderstood

Far too often, organizations try to develop a product to meet customers’ needs without ever really verifying what the customers wanted in the first place. Instead, those organizations make a strenuous effort to “sell” the product through rigorous, ongoing advertising, promotions and publicity -- through "outbound" marketing. These organizations may have built a beautiful ladder – but it may be entirely on the wrong roof! Far too often, that lesson comes from painful experience.

Experienced organizations have learned that it is not their opinion that matters most regarding whether their product is needed or not. The opinion that matters most is that of the customers. These organizations have learned that they might not know what they don't know about their customers. That precious knowledge about the customers comes from "inbound" marketing -- through market research to clarify customers' needs and what they are willing to do to get those needs met. If the inbound marketing is done well, the outbound marketing is particularly easy -- and effective.

Inbound Marketing Includes Market Research to Find Out:

  1. What specific groups of potential customers/clients (markets) might have which specific needs (nonprofits often already have a very clear community need in mind when starting out with a new program -- however, the emerging practice of nonprofit business development, or earned income development, often starts by researching a broad group of clients to identify new opportunities for programs)
  2. How those needs might be met for each group (or target market), which suggests how a product might be designed to meet the need (nonprofits might think in terms of outcomes, or changes, to accomplish among the groups of clients in order to meet the needs)
  3. How each of the target markets might choose to access the product, etc. (its "packaging")
  4. How much the customers/clients might be willing pay and how (pricing analysis)
  5. Who the competitors are (competitor analysis)
  6. How to design and describe the product such that customers/clients will buy from the organization, rather than from its competitors (its unique value proposition)
  7. How the product should be identified -- its personality -- to be most identifiable (its naming and branding)

Outbound Marketing Includes:

  1. Advertising and promotions (focused on the product)
  2. Sales
  3. Public and media relations (focused on the entire organization)
  4. Customer service
  5. Customer satisfaction

(Return to Table of Contents above)

Additional Perspectives on the Basics of Marketing

What's "Advertising, Marketing, Promotion, Public Relations and Publicity, and Sales?"
Makin’ the Marketing Strategy Happen!
Numerous free online resources
Top 6 Marketing Consultants Share Their Secrets
Get Everyone on Your Marketing Team -- 3 Steps
10 Marketing Musts
Marketing Basics for the Small Business
Small Business Marketing Strategy
Rules of Marketing: Old vs. New
10 Things They Don't Teach You About Marketing in College
How to Create a Powerful Marketing Message
What Are Some Marketing Mistakes That Companies Make?
Survey of Marketing Executives' Priorities
Marketing Can Do Better
Marketing’s the Engine of a Growing Company
Four Strategies for Marketing a Grand Opening
Reasons Not to Combine Fundraising and Marketing Committees

General Resources About Marketing

Good Marketing Ideas: a collection of marketing ideas and articles aimed at a variety of marketing forms and business types. Includes offline and internet marketing as well as non-profit marketing ideas.
Marketing Resource Center
List of useful articles
Industry Standard
Marketing Plan Do-It-Yourself Step by Step
Marketing Internet Library
20 Powerful Marketing Tips
Best Practices and Marketing Case Studies
Question Marketing

For the Category of Marketing:

To round out your knowledge of this Library topic, you may want to review some related topics, available from the link below. Each of the related topics includes free, online resources.

Also, scan the Recommended Books listed below. They have been selected for their relevance and highly practical nature.

Related Library Topics

Recommended Books