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Branding gaining in importance, says Philip Kotler

Staff Correspondent

Internet has to be factored into the marketing framework

CHENNAI: In today's world of Internet and media explosion, branding is becoming important more than before, feels the marketing guru Philip Kotler. Branding is critical for creating trust in the minds of consumers.

The four P's of marketing — product, price, place and promotion — were the corner stones of building a brand in the past. Today, one needs to redefine the role of marketing as creating, communicating and delivering value to the consumer (CCDV), says Mr. Kotler.

Addressing a press conference here on Monday, Mr. Kotler said today the consumer would buy a product or service or a combination only if he saw a value in it. So the central role of marketing was to deliver the value to the consumers. The marketing guru said the 4Ps, the most important factors of Philip Kotler's theory, were more relevant for the manufacturing sector. But in the current economic system, this had been replaced with `CCDV' marketing, which was creating value (instead of product), communicating value (in place of promotions) and delivering value.

Mr. Kotler said information technology (IT) played an important role, which had helped to build relationship databases, which in turn helped in tracking the change in preferences and segments. It had become important to be the early spotters of these changes in preferences, he added.

About Internet, the marketing guru said it was a tool that had to be factored into the marketing framework. For instance, every company needed to have a good website. "Companies cam use the Internet to study competitors, marketing research (organise focus groups), probably do B2B auctioning, and set up chat rooms for your customers to discuss issues." Today from B2B the entire marketing face was changing into C2C, with the help of Internet.

Mr. Kotler was in Chennai to address Cognizant Technology Solutions' management team on `customer intimacy' as part of the company's global leadership programme entitled `Hi5'.

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