5 Marketing Concepts – Marketing Management Philosophies

5 marketing conceptsThe marketing concept is the strategy that firms implement to satisfy customers’ needs, increase sales, maximize profit and beat the competition. There are 5 marketing concepts that organizations adopt and execute. These are; (1) production concept, (2) product concept, (3) selling concept, (4) marketing concept and (5) societal marketing concept.

Marketing is a department of management that tries to design strategies that will build profitable relationships with target consumers.

Marketers must answer 2 important questions.

  1. what philosophy is the best for a company in setting marketing strategies?
  2. What will be the importance for organization, customers and society’s interests?

To answer these; there are five alternative concepts under which organizations design and carry out their marketing strategies.

These 5 alternative marketing concepts are also called marketing management philosophies.

Marketing Management Philosophies or 5 Marketing Concepts are;

  1. Production Concept,
  2. Product Concept,
  3. Selling Concept,
  4. Marketing Concept,
  5. Societal Marketing Concept.

five marketing concepts explained with examples

These concepts are described below;

Production Concept

Production Concept

The idea of production concept – “Consumers will favor products that are available and highly affordable”. This concept is one of the oldest Marketing management orientations that guide sellers.

Companies adopting this orientation run a major risk of focusing too narrowly on their operations and losing sight of the real objective.

Most times; the production concept can lead to marketing myopia. Management focuses on improving production and distribution efficiency.


in some situations; the production concept is still a useful philosophy.

Production Concept example:-

You see in Amazon or retail stores; the market is flooded with cheap products from china. Everything from the cheap plastic product from China is on your cart now.

The best example of the production concept is Vivo, the Chinese smartphone brand. Their phones are available in almost every corner of the Asian market. You can walk in any phone shop in Asia and can walk out with the latest and greatest smartphone from Vivo.

Product Concept

Product Concept

The product concept holds that the consumers will favor products that offer the most in quality, performance and innovative features.

Here; under this concept,

Marketing strategies are focused on making continuous product improvements.

Product quality and improvement are important parts of marketing strategies, sometimes the only part. Targeting only on the company’s products could also lead to marketing myopia.

For example;

Suppose a company makes the best quality Floppy disk. But a customer does need a floppy disk?

She or he needs something that can be used to store the data. It can be achieved by a USB Flash drive, SD memory cards, portable hard disks, etc.

So that the company should not look to make the best floppy disk. They should focus to meet the customer’s data storage needs.

Product Concept example:-

When you think of high-quality products; Apple will be one of the top ones. Their products are so good that they set industry trends and standards.

Logitech makes very high-quality computer products such as keyboard, mouse, and webcams. These high-quality products are priced higher but people still buy and they get almost free advertisement from independent reviews.

Selling Concept

Selling Concept

The selling concept holds the idea- “consumers will not buy enough of the firm’s products unless it undertakes a large-scale selling and promotion effort”.

Here the management focuses on creating sales transactions rather than on building long-term, profitable customer relationships.

In other words;

The aim is to sell what the company makes rather than making what the market wants. Such an aggressive selling program carries very high risks.

In selling concept the marketer assumes that customers will be coaxed into buying the product will like it, if they don’t like it, they will possibly forget their disappointment and buy it again later. This is usually a very poor and costly assumption.

Typically the selling concept is practiced with unsought goods. Unsought goods are that buyers do not normally think of buying, such as insurance or blood donations.

These industries must be good at tracking down prospects and selling them on a product’s benefits.

Selling Concept example:-

Every saw an ad online or TV commercial that you almost can’t escape and hide from? The Selling Concept is in play.

Almost all companies eventually fall into this concept. “Mountain Dew” ads are hard to miss. If people like Mountain Dew or not, that is debatable but you can see that PepsiCo is pushing it hard using ads.

Almost all soft drinks and soda drinks follow the selling concept. These drinks have no health benefits ( actually harm your health more), you can easily replace them with water ( the most available substances in the earth).

And the soft drink companies know it, and they run ads 24×7, spending millions,

Marketing Concept

what is marketing concept

The marketing concept holds- “achieving organizational goals depends on knowing the needs and wants of target markets and delivering the desired satisfactions better than competitors do”.

Here marketing management takes a “customer first” approach.

Under the marketing concept, customer focus and value are the routes to achieve sales and profits.

The marketing concept is a customer-centered “sense and responds” philosophy. The job is not to find the right customers for your product but to find the right products for your customers.

The marketing concept and the selling concepts are two extreme concepts and different from each other.

Marketing Concept example:-

Restaurants and startups do follow the marketing concept. They try to understand the consumer and deliver the best product or service, which is better for the competition.

Dollar shave club is the best example. They changed the Men’s grooming market. They have understood that people are not happy with their previous grooming products and their prices.

Where other company’s grooming products will cost hundreds to buy for just one month. Dollar shave club charges a couple of bucks a month with higher quality products and convenience of home delivery.

Difference between Selling Concept and Marketing Concept

difference between selling concept and marketing concept

No.The Selling ConceptThe Marketing Concept
1undertakes a large-scale selling and promotion effortundertakes activities such as; market research,
2The Selling Concept is suitable with unsought goods—those that buyers do not normally think of buying, such as insurance or blood donations.The Marketing Concept is suitable for almost any type of product and market.
3Focus on the selling concept starts at the production level.Focus on the marketing concept starts at understanding the market.
4Any company following selling concept undertakes a high-riskCompanies that are following the marketing concept require to bare less risk and uncertainty.
5The Selling Concept assumes –“customers who are coaxed into buying the product will like it. Or, if they don’t like it, they will possibly forget their disappointment and buy it again later.”Instead of making an assumption, The marketing concept finds out what really the consumer requires and acts accordingly to them.
6The Selling Concept makes poor assumptions.The marketing concept works on facts gathered by its “market and customer first” approach.

Societal Marketing Concept

Societal Marketing Concept

Societal marketing concept questions whether the pure marketing concept overlooks possible conflicts between consumer short-run wants and consumer long-run welfare.

The societal marketing concept holds “marketing strategy should deliver value to customers in a way that maintains or improves both the consumer’s and society’s well-being”.

It calls for sustainable marketing, socially and environmentally responsible marketing that meets the present needs of consumers and businesses while also preserving or enhancing the ability of future generations to meet their needs.

The Societal Marketing Concept puts Human welfare on top before profits and satisfying the wants.

The global warming panic button is pushed and a revelation is required in the way we use our resources. So companies are slowly either fully or partially trying to implement the societal marketing concept.

Societal Marketing Concept example:-

While large companies sometimes launch programs or products that benefit society; it is hard to find a company that is fully committed socially.

We can see Adidas doing great as they continue to support Colin Kaepernick despite pressure from various parties. Tesla is promising a big push for green energy with electric cars and solar roof panels/tiles.

Conclusion: Companies Follows a mix of Marketing Concepts in Real-world

Companies don’t follow a single marketing concept rigidly. They usually use a mix of marketing concepts or change it depending on the market situation, competition and sales numbers.

Let’s overview the 5 basic marketing concepts with this infographic.

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