In the Austrian business paradigm, marketing is not a function or a department or a set of techniques, it is the orientation of the entire business towards the customer. Marketing seeks to identify with the customer’s point of view, utilize that point of view to steer innovative new solutions for customers, present them and communicate them, and continue to engage and listen for acceptance and ideas for improvement.
Marketing is the process for the firm’s complete alignment with customers and their preferences, compiling a comprehensive set of go-to-market behaviors, techniques and processes that support the Value Learning Cycle. Marketing is customer-enabling:
- enabling customers’ awareness of the offering so that they can decide on its potential value;
- enabling customers’ comparisons of its value proposition to alternatives;
- enabling informed choice about the price they are willing to pay to acquire it, including their opportunity cost;
- enabling incorporation of the usage experience into the customer’s own system, so that a positive evaluation results, leading to repeat purchases and loyalty.
Marketing is promises made and promises kept.
The firm’s stream of goods and services reach customers through distribution channels (including the direct channel). Customers’ deem their experiences in the channel to be part of their experience with the brand or service provider. These experiences must be managed appropriately.
Communication, packaging and presentation
The firm’s communications delineate the positive emotions and benefits that can potentially be experienced in the consumption of the goods and services the firm offers. Communications should be crafted in this way – delineating a keepable promise. All forms of communication, presentation and packaging are included.
Customer Experience / Relationship Management
The customer experience extends beyond transactions into use and consumption, and the later cycles of the value learning process. Relationship management monitors the evolving experience and changing environmental context and aims at managing the resultant relationship variables.
Employee Handbook / Internal Marketing
The systems of internal rules or value codes that guide employees to generate customer value without ordering them are fundamental to firm performance. The emergence of a firm culture is value-stabilizing. Often the “rules” can be captured in packaged communications similar to an employee handbook, so that everyone in the company makes an aligned and complementary value contribution.
Marketing and Sales Implementation and Support
Marketing and sales implementation are critical to customer relationships and therefore to future value streams. Marketing aims at triggering transactions, and sales is engaged in completing the transactions, and both activities engage in establishing and maintaining relationships.
Value Facilitation and Brand
Customers create value in their experiences, and the role of the entrepreneurial firm is to facilitate the experience. Value conceptualization and value facilitation constitute one half of the 4 V’s business model. The role of facilitation is to remove all barriers to customer purchase. The role of brand is to symbolize this barrier-removal in the form of a promise and the credibility and trust that it will be kept.
The marketing model aligns the 4 V’s business model with the customer via facilitation of inbound communication of preferences, alignment of value propositions to these preferences, communication of the alignment, and monitoring and measurement of the customer experience.
Value-Generating Business Tools
Downloadable tools designed to guide you in applying E4B core principles in the day-to-day operations of your business.
Featured Podcast Episodes
In-depth conversations with business school professors matched with real-world experience from entrepreneurs.
Blog Posts & Articles
Long-form news and commentary on current business events through the lens of Austrian economics.