Marketing and Strategy


Often (well, not often, but a couple of times) in class, the question was raised about what exactly is the difference between strategy management and marketing management. I guess the question does come up in many marketing and strategy classes not because the answer is difficult, but because it takes us a while to warm up to the two concepts :) 

I was unsure as well. After all, both courses talk about uniqueness in value proposition (UVP which is another buzz word I’m only just beginning to understand fully) and about segmentation (who to serve), targeting (more in marketing than strategy course) and positioning.

Now that we have a good 15 hours of lectures in both courses and we have had the chance to read more material, it turns out that the answer is quite simple. Marketing is outward looking and Strategy is inward looking. 

Marketing is about identifying the customer/ market needs, how these needs differ across time and space, which are the best customer segments to serve and how best to communicate the unique value proposition to the segment. 

Strategy on the other hand is more inward looking about how to choose the activities to perform, and those not to perform and to create a strategic fit in the configuration of these activities in a way that it creates a unique value chain – a sustainable competitive advantage – which produces the unique value proposition to the customer.


2 thoughts on “Marketing and Strategy

  1. Sometimes it’s going too far.
    All the value proposition, alignment, core business and other concepts are great stuff, but I simply disagree with the latest Strategy class on Virgin. That reminds me of the Mad Tea Party from “Alice in Wonderland.” Drink and move to the next chair. I think Branson is no an example of that. And I don’t think he is gonna abandon one of his businesses because things are not going very well without trying to do something to improve it.

    Nevertheless, what I also wanted to say is that If we’d do only what we can do, the mankind still would’ve been living in caves and gathering fallen fruits. We learn by trial and error, that’s evolutionary, and sometimes we fail, sometimes we succeed. But if you don’t try, you’ll never succeed, that’s for sure.

    P.S. I think, that’s why I also sooo like to watch House. “Start treatment, then test” :) However, I’m very risk averse personally.

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