The purpose of this blog is to understand Kotler’s classic definition of marketing and how that is effected by the needs of the consumers. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is the best way to describe the impact. Such as, how the different needs of will affect the marketing of the educational institutions.
As per Marketing Concept (e-book), Kotler’s definition of marketing suggests that it is a list of human activities towards the goal of satisfying the organizations and consumers by providing them what they need and want through exchanging processes. This definition provided by Kotler delivers the key elements of the marketing process, such as human activities, satisfaction, needs and wants, and exchange process.
Marketing is the process to satisfy the needs and wants of both the buyers and sellers. Although needs and wants are usually used as synonymous, they have a fine difference in the context of marketing. The wants of a consumer are something that have a purpose and are connected to the consumer’s emotions and feelings. On the other hand, needs of a consumer could be something that is a by-product of another purchase or a basic requirement that does not invoke any feeling into the consumer’s mind.
As satisfaction is the core of marketing, it is crucial to determine the process in which the highest level of satisfaction can be achieved. In order to satisfy, knowing the needs and the wants of the consumer is significant. There are two kinds of needs – biogenic and psychogenic. Biogenic needs are the basic needs for a human to survive, such as food, water and shelter. On the other side, psychogenic needs are fundamentally the wants of the consumers that satisfies their need for power and social status.
According to Marketing Concept (e-book), customer needs can be best explained with Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Maslow suggests that customer needs may be an influencing factor of consumer behaviour, yet it is not necessarily the determinant of that. The lower order needs in the hierarchy should be satisfied before the higher order needs.
Transcendence Needs: This kind of needs are needs of consumers to create an integrated and educated world by helping others achieving it.
Self-actualization Needs: This kind of needs refer to the needs of the consumers that drive them towards utilizing their full capability and doing the best according to it. It is connected to the moral sense of the consumers.
Aesthetic Needs: This need is about the human’s need to find beauty, symmetry, and creativity in the nature.
Cognitive Needs: These needs are the needs of the consumers to satisfy their curiosity, personal interests, and the urge to know and understand more.
Esteem Needs: These needs of the consumers are related to their longing to feel respected and recognised by the people around them. This is related to a person’s need to be valued and gain status to increase self-esteem.
Belonging Needs: These needs refer to the feeling of belongingness in a society or community. The need of people to be accepted and trusted by their families, friends and society.
Safety Needs: These needs are the people’s yearning for security, safety and protection for themselves, their families and possessions.
Physiological Needs: These are the basic needs for a human to survive.
This theory can be explained in the example of students as buyers and educational institutions as sellers. The needs of the students to acquire education can be variant. The common needs are to establish themselves in life to gain social status and purpose, able to have get the basic needs life, to be accepted and a valuable part of the society, and to ensure the security and safety of the family. On the other hand, a few student may want to gain education for a greater purpose, such as, to make a better society, to satisfy own hunger for knowledge, or to do the best that he can do. Understanding these needs will help the educational institutions to make the marketing more objective and consumer oriented. This will help the institutions to increase consumer satisfaction, and thus increase the profit and consumer loyalty.
Marketing is a series of human activities aiming towards the satisfaction of buyers and consumers. This definition of marketing provided by Kotler helps to extract the key elements of the marketing process, and identifies satisfaction as the central element of marketing. The significance of satisfaction is that the future behaviour of the consumer depends on it. Thereafter, satisfying the consumers require an accurate understanding of the needs and wants of the consumers. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a useful device to differentiate between the different kinds of needs of the consumers and prioritize them. In conclusion, it must be said that this discussion provides insight and comprehension on the various kinds of needs of the customers. This comprehension can be used further to do market analysis and product design.