Marketing does not exist to make up for inadequacies in a mediocre product. The first job of marketing is to create an excellent product.
The best marketers have always understood this. Consider two quotes.
Guy Kawasaki: “The best brands never start out with the intent of building a great brand. They focus on building a great — and profitable — product or service and an organization that can sustain it.”
Emmanuel Rosen, in The Anatomy of Buzz: How to Create Word of Mouth Marketing: “The flow of information about a product cannot be separate from the quality of the product itself.”
I would suggest that this is a very Christian view of marketing. We often think of marketing as creating fluff and puffery about a product, trying to get people to think better of a product than it really deserves. Can there be a Christian view of marketing? Certainly not if we call that marketing.
But that’s not real marketing. Real marketing is about telling the truth. And that’s good, because that’s what a Christian view of marketing is, too: tell the truth about a product, and do it in a way that is remarkable, engaging, and that spreads. A Christian view of marketing has truth at it’s center, and makes truth the central and defining point of any marketing strategy.
Can you actually do marketing that way? Yes. In fact, it’s really the only kind of marketing that actually works. For no matter how great of a marketing campaign you create, if customers are disappointed with your product, they will not spread the word. But within the domain of actually telling the truth about a product, there are some amazing things you can do.
In fact, one of the most intriguing things about this perspective is that it means that good marketing has its beginning all the way back in product design.
In other words, marketing is not something “added on,” that you do after you’ve created your product or service. Rather, it begins in the product development phase itself. Good marketing is always organic to the product itself, because good marketing is about spreading the word about excellent products that are truly worth knowing about.