When we are in or hear conversations about the value of advertising, we are immediately disappointed when the context of the argument is focuses on the advertising itself, and not the product.

Like some of the AdMen of old have penned, the best advertising in the world cannot save a bad product. But, even sub-par advertising could help a good product.

The point is, marketers must provide a good product for the consumer (whether it be B2B or B2C), for the buying party to care.

Consider B2B:

Even though the B2B process will differ slightly than B2C, we are still interacting with people. Marketers must show those people why doing business with them is worth it. Fancy promotions, dinners, and discounts will amount to a big waste of time if the marketer fails to highlight what the product can do to solve the business’ problem.

If the question the business is looking for deals with marketing, then the solution should clearly show how the product being sold fills the void the business saw exposed. It sounds simple, but sometimes the answer can be more complicated.

Consider B2C:

No one likes to be “sold to.” But, people do enjoy being heard and understood. In that case, it is necessary for the marketer to listen to the customer’s wants and needs, watch for the right buying signals, and match the right product to solve the customer’s problem.

Again, it sounds simple. But if we take a step back to examine the marketing landscape, we don’t see this approach as a whole.

There are a few reasons why that could be the case.

  1. The product is bad; so brands are relying on spending ad dollars to try to sell it to a market that doesn’t see its worth.
  2. The business is targeting the wrong market; so even if the advertising is good, the product being sold doesn’t match the needs and wants of the consumers.
  3. The market isn’t ready for it; so all the ad dollars and promotions will flop if the market isn’t prepared for it (i.e. Google Glass).
  4. The message is wrong; the target market doesn’t understand what the business is saying and due to a cluttered environment, the consumer blocks it from their consideration sets.

Just to list a few.

In conclusion, marketing is not just how good or poor your advertising works. The product must hold some value to the customer. It’s the marketing component that gets the customer to notice it.