Thursday, January 27, 2011

MARKETING MYOPIA

Marketing Myopia is an important marketing paper written by Theodore Levitt, a professor at the Harvard Business School. This paper was first published in the Harvard Business Review in 1960 in which Levitt was the editor and won a McKinsey Award in the same year. This is intended as a manifesto and not an analysis, based on the casual interview and observation of the author in the real business environment, Marketing Myopia hopes to correct the constricted visions of some business executives towards their organizations’ goals and their narrow understanding of what business they are really in. Levitt presented several propositions how to rise above myopia in business. One of the author’s purposes is to encourage CEOs to re-examine their corporate vision; and redefine their markets in terms of wider perspectives.

The article focuses more on marketing strategy. It also introduced the most influential marketing idea that business will do better in the end if they will concentrate on meeting customers’ needs rather than on selling products. Levitt presented lots of ideas how to focus on consumers’ needs and expectations. He sighted different examples why business failed to grow in the industry they belonged, had they define their nature of business carefully, for instance the railroad being in the transportation business rather than the railroad business, they would have continue to grow.

Marketing Myopia is such a very in-depth business journal which thoroughly helps businessmen and executives understand better why the business exist, who its potential consumers are and how to foresee its future to avoid being stuck in the middle. Indeed, the paper summarizes one fact in business, that every major industry was seen at the start as a growing industry.

The paper is very concrete in sighting examples on why organizations are missing opportunities because of their short sightedness in predicting the future of the business. It is also clearly emphasized that the major setback among potential industries which failed to grow massively is not because of market saturation but because, in part, there has been a failure of management.

The paper emphasizes the importance of market and stakeholders’ research to be integrated on the company’s goals. This part of planning is very important because it underline greater opportunities in the operations as the industry evolves. Managers and executives should be trained to look beyond their current business activities and should not be confined only in the internal aspects of the business, they should think outside the perimeter to see the competitive changes surrounding them.

Feedbacks following the released of this journal in 1960 include the realization of some business executives what opportunities they had been missing because they are focusing only in selling and not in marketing. Consequently, the paper was influential as some companies began redefining their business classifications, for instance, oil companies, which represented one the author’s main examples in the paper, redefined their business as energy rather than just petroleum.

This journal is essentially useful to companies, especially to managers and top executives because the insights presented carry a strong impact on how to deal with their organizations effectively and efficiently. In order to build an effective customer-oriented company, the organizations should tap a good leader who could formulate a customer-creating system within the establishment.

No comments: