Marketing plays an important role in any business. No business can be completely successful if its product is not marketed properly. Marketing builds the image of an organization. It allows business to maintain long lasting relationship with its customers. Marketing is not one-time duty, it is an ongoing strategy that helps business flourish. The various activities in marketing perform by marketers is known as functions of marketing. These functions are illustrated below. They are helpful to identify consumer’s needs and satisfy them.
People buy what they need. The buying function includes determination of needs, selection of quality and variety, deciding on brand, size and method of payment. Here buying means the acquisition of goods and services by manufacturer, wholesaler and retailer for the purpose of resale. The large business organizations may have purchase department (experienced staff of buyers) which determines the needs of the organization to buy product or raw material.
Selling is a part of marketing. It refers to exchange of goods and services. It is often referred to as the art of persuasion. It entails transfer of ownership of products to the buyer. Building relationship with customers and convincing them to make purchases is the heart of selling. Selling determines the volume of firm’s profits. Sales can be boosted through advertisement, publicity, sales promotion and personal selling. The sale of product can be taken place through direct and indirect distribution channel.
Generally, when goods are produced they are stored until they are demanded. It is important that distribution centers should have adequate storage facility that can be leased. Manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers perform the function of storage. In case of emergency, goods can be made available from the storage. The function of storage enables an organization to achieve the economies of large scale production. Storage creates time utility. The time utility means that customers have access to product when they demand it. The means of storage include shops, stores and warehouses.
Transpiration is the physical means by which the goods are moved from the place of production to the place of consumption. It provides service of connecting a company to its suppliers and customers. Transportation enhances the value of goods by creation of place utility. The place utility suggests that customers have product available where they demand it. The need of transportation is analyzed on the basis of product, cost, and location of the target market. The marketing managers seeks to ensure that the business have goods available where they are demanded. The means of transportation includes road, sea, airline and pipeline.
Finance is considered the lifeblood of any business. Without finance the business cannot survive. A company must have sufficient finance to produce and advertise its product. The finance deals with the methods of payment for goods and services delivered to customers. Most of the goods are sold to wholesalers and retailers on credit which leads to rendering financing services. It is necessary to budget for marketing activities and obtain enough funds for operations. The source of finance includes capital, loan and retain earnings.
Standardization and Grading
Producing goods at predetermined specifications is standardization. It ensures the product size, color, design, weight, safety, quality and quantity. Standardization creates uniformity. Marketing managers periodically taste and evaluate the product based on consumers’ feedback in order to meet standardization. On the other hand, grading refers to the classification of products into different grades such as grade A, grade B and grade C. Generally, products are classified on the basis of quality. Thus, the marketers charge the price of grade A product higher than the price of grade B and so on.
Collecting and analyzing market information is a crucial function of marketing. The information can be collected from many sources like reviewing published market research reports (secondary data), carrying out a survey, monitoring product review sites and social media. In today’s world, the best platform is social media where information can easily be found on consumer’s needs and attitudes toward products and services. When information is gathered and analyzed, it helps the organization to find out the best opportunities in the market.
Risk also is an essential function of marketing. It should be considered and studied carefully. It may be in the form of competition, fall in price, depression, obsolescence and spoilage of goods, theft, fire, natural disasters and any other loss that may occur. The process of assessing, identifying and managing risks is called risk management. The risk management is an important part of any business which helps to identify potential risks and recover from their impacts.