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I was intrigued by an online discussion the other day about what marketing is – or isn’t. So I decided to find some giants’ shoulders to stand on, and herewith share some of my favorites:

Phil Kotler:  “Marketing is the social process by which individuals and groups obtain what they need and want through creating and exchanging products and value with others.”

George Day: “Understanding, attracting, and keeping valuable customers.”

Sergio Zyman: “Selling more stuff to more people more often for more money more efficiently.” 

Peter Drucker: “The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him [or her! – DH] and sells itself.”

Theodore Levitt: “Marketing is a stepchild in most corporations because of an overemphasis on creating and selling products. But selling is not marketing. [Selling] is not concerned with the values that the exchange is all about. And it does not, as marketing invariably does, view the entire business process as consisting of a tightly integrated effort to discover, create, arouse, and satisfy customer needs.”

What are your favorites? Leave a comment.


While CEO succession is much in the news, it is often discussed from the point of view of board members, consultants and search firms. To understand the perspectives of today’s CEOs on succession planning, we spoke with 18 sitting CEOs, one recently retired CEO and one sitting chairman…They shared practical suggestions on how to make CEO succession work more effectively for the company, the board, potential candidates and the CEO in this Chief Executive magazine article entitle Succession in practice.

The median salaries and bonuses for the chief executives of 200 big U.S. companies fell 8.5% to $2.24 million, according to an analysis for The Wall Street Journal by Hay Group, a management consulting firm. The analysis examined proxy statements for companies with more than $5 billion in annual revenue. Survey details here.


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