What is Marketing?
Marketing is a total system of business activities designed to plan, price, promote and distribute want-satisfying goods and services to the benefit of the present and potential customers to achieve organization objectives. Marketing roles in textile and apparel industry are involved in selling and promoting products to retailers, brands, or suppliers.
Marketing terms are responsible for promoting product or services from business-to-business in the case of suppliers, from business-to-consumers within retailers and combination of both when working for fashion brands.
Marketing positions within fashion and textiles can be based in-house or a company can enjoy a marketing agency to cover this area.
Marketing is a societal process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating, offering, and freely exchanging products and services of value with other. Marketing in textile and apparel industry is the application of a range of techniques and a business philosophy that centers upon the customers and the potential customers of textile and apparel-related products and services in order to meet the long-term goal of the organization.
Knowledge and Job Skills for a Marketing Manager:
These job skills and knowledge’s are very essential who are interested to consider a career as a marketing manager.
- An analytical and creative mind
- The ability to priorities
- Excellent communication and presentation skills
- Good literacy, numeracy and IT skills
- Strong people management skills
The Role of the Marketing Manager:
Liaison between marketing roles and other roles within the textile and apparel industry:
Roles of Marketing Department in Textile and Apparel Industry:
Large fashion retailers and brands often have their own marketing departments or brand manager to organize promotional activities to communicate the company’s brand image and value of consumers.
This may involve commissioning advertising agencies to produce advertising companies. However, advertising is not a widespread promotional techniques in the textile and apparel industry, due to the constantly changing nature of fashion products.
There are several more subtle and cost-effective ways of promoting fashion ranges to potential consumers which are more popular, such as:
- Public relations
- Fashion show
- Press launches
- Celebrity endorsement
- Point-of-purchase material
- Special offers
Marketing agencies can deal with various aspects of promotion to formulate a marketing strategy for a fashion business and integrated marketing agencies can also provide advertising. Marketing agencies tend to deal with different product types rather than being fashion specialists. Within a marketing agency account managers work with specific retailers or brands. Marketing roles have an emphasis on knowledge of marketing techniques rather than product manufacture.
Functions of Marketing Department in Textile and Apparel Industry:
Functions of marketing department are classified in below figure. It is based on the traditional approach of the study of marketing. A new list of marketing functions has recently been adapted to suit the changed concept of marketing.
These functions are:
- Contractual – Searching for buyers and sellers
- Merchandising – The fitting of goods to market requirements
- Pricing – Selection of price to induce customers to accept the goods
- Propaganda – The creation of customers
- Physical distribution – The transporting and storing of goods
- Termination – The end of the marketing process
Above functions are described below:
1. The contractual function:
The contractual function is the process of searching out the market, that is, buyers. It consists of finding out the potential buyers where they are located and how they could be reached. Further activities included are selecting a proper distribution channel, choosing appropriate media to reach the customers and discovering consumer needs. From the point of view of the buyer, this function consists of finding the most suitable source for the goods.
2. The merchandising function:
This is a function that involves the coordination of selling with production. It includes the process of selecting the product to be produced and stocked with a necessary emphasis on the size, appearance, form, quantities to be bought, time of purchase or production and so on. The term is most precisely defined as product planning. This function helps ‘to make an adjustment of merchandise produced or offered for sale to customer demand’.
3. The pricing function:
Pricing function is mainly based on the economic values of a product to be bought or sold. Pricing is very important and should be given a greater role. A product is finally approved by the consumers only if the price is acceptable to them. This makes it necessary on the part of the sellers to evaluate the possible prices for the products even before the products are brought to markets. In spite of past experience and most scientific approach, pricing function proves to be difficult. A perfect price cannot be reasoned out.
4. The propaganda function:
This function comprises all methods used by the sellers to influence and induce the buyers to buy products. Normally, it would include all advertising and personal selling activities. These activities aim at increasing sales.
5. The physical distribution function:
This function relates to transportation and storage activities.
6. The termination function:
This function is the final link in the process of marketing where the seller and the buyer arrive at an agreement. These essentials are settled at this stage: the quality, the quantity and the price of the product to be exchanged. Since these elements are subject to negotiation, the process is also termed as the ‘negotiation function’. It is remarked that ‘the termination function is the consummative act for which all other functions have been preparatory’. This function includes a series of jobs a seller has to contemplate to complete the whole of marketing process. It includes determination of terms of sale, delivery dates, credit arrangement, the guarantees and service policies. However, it should be remembered that marketing does not end with the payment for and the acceptance of goods. There often remains a moral and legal obligation on the part of the seller that he has also to ensure satisfaction of the consumers.
In this article various types of roles and functions are classified that are used for explaining the process of marketing. It is an accepted fact that marketing is made up of a number of activities. However, this unanimity is not found in classifying the functions. The selection of classification significantly depends on the necessity, circumstances and purpose of the study. From the theoretical point of view, it is not the classification that is important but the functions that are important. Unless all the functions are performed most efficiently, the produce will accumulate in the godowns yielding no value at all. This would cause risks and losses to producers. It is these functions which give life and blood to the products and create a market for them. In other words, production is meaningful only when subsequent marketing functions are performed most effectively and efficiently.
- Fashion Marketing Management by A. Arunraj and V. Ramesh Babu
- Garment Manufacturing Technology Edited by Rajkishore Nayak and Rajiv Padhye
- Marketing Fashion: Strategy, Branding and Promotion, Second Edition by Harriet Posner
- Fashion Marketing, 3rd Edition Edited by Mike Easey
Image courtesy: https://clin-edge.com
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Editor of Fashion2Apparel. She is a fashion designer and ex-lecturer in Fashion Designing. She wants to spread fashion knowledge throughout the world.