chapter  1
40 Pages


The question of what marketing is and what it entails has been the focus of a consider-

able amount of work over the past 40 years. From this, numerous definitions have

emerged, with differing emphases on the process of marketing, the functional activities

that constitute marketing, and the orientation (or philosophy) of marketing. The

Chartered Institute of Marketing, for example, defines it as:

“. . . the management process for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably.” A slightly longer but conceptually similar definition of marketing was proposed by the

American Marketing Association (AMA) in 1985:

“Marketing is the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and

organizational objectives.” Although this definition, or variations of it, has been used by a variety of writers (see,

for example, McCarthy and Perreault, 1990; Kotler, 1991; Jobber, 2003), Littler and

Wilson (1995, p. 1) have pointed to the way in which ‘its adequacy is beginning to be

questioned in some European textbooks’ (e.g. Foxall, 1984; Baker, 1987). It could be said

that the AMA definition is more of a list than a definition and is therefore clumsy and

inconvenient to use; that it cannot ever be comprehensive; and that it fails to provide a

demarcation as to what necessarily is or is not ‘marketing’.