Philip Kotler

Melissa Ward is the managing editor for Target Marketing, and she has opinions! More importantly, she's a nerd for great copy and design, a disciple of authenticity, and really loves it when marketers get it right.

US News and World Report recently pointed to Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management as the nation’s top educational institution for aspiring marketers. Among the likes of Penn, Harvard, Stanford, and Columbia, what makes Northwestern’s program stand out from the crowd?

More than a buzzword, "being human," especially in brand-building and leveraging customer relationships, has become a buzz-phrase or buzz-concept. But, there is little that is new or trailblazing in this idea. To understand customers, the enterprise needs to think in human, emotional terms. To make the brand or company more attractive, and have more impact on customer decision-making, there must be an emphasis on creating more perceived value and more personalization. Much of this is, culturally, operationally, and from a communications perspective, what we have been describing as "inside-out advocacy" for years.

It’s been nearly half a century since Philip Kotler first published his "Principles of Marketing," which has defined the practice of millions of professionals worldwide ever since. It’s no stretch to say that, before Kotler, there was no marketing profession. What made Kotler different than what came before is that he took insights from other fields, such as economics, social science and analytics and applied them to the marketing arena. Although it seems basic now, it was groundbreaking then. Today technology is transforming marketing once again

According to John Gerzema and Michael D'Antonio, marketers need to tune in to the real consumers, not the personas they've been marketing to.

Remember Henry Ford's comment about the Model T? "Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black." Companies, and marketing, have changed.

Change is an inevitable precursor to growth. Amidst the corporate growing pains firms face when working to maintain company culture while embracing technology, remembering “what got us here” is a challenge. Looking at the big picture, marketing guru Philip Kotler says authentic marketing “is the art of identifying and understanding customer needs and creating solutions that deliver satisfaction to the customers, profits to the producers and benefits for the stakeholders.” For Des Moines, Iowa-based publishing dynasty Meredith Corp., creating solutions to satisfy customer needs involves using a decentralized approach to leveraging the housefile. It strives to achieve authentic marketing by focusing on long-term ROI with

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