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I need three responses of at least 150 words each for the below students discussions for this week. Also in the bold below are the questions the students at answering.

Does marketing reflect the needs and wants of consumers or does marketing shape consumer needs and wants?

Student one:

Does marketing reflect the needs and wants of consumers or does marketing shape consumer needs and wants?

First let’s take a look at what a need and want is exactly. A need for survival refers to things like air, water, sustenance, and shelter. According to Kotler and Keller, these would be basic human needs. They also refer to education, entertainment, and recreation as needs. These later needs come into play when a person has attained the basic survival needs. These needs become wants when directed to specific objects that might satisfy the need. For example, the need for sustenance could be satisfied with rice, but the need becomes a want when the rice is replaced with a steak. Our wants are shaped by our society. (Kotler and Keller, 2016) By this logic then, marketing does not create needs, needs pre-exist marketing. (Kotler and Keller, 2016) Since wants are when a specific product is chosen to fulfill a need then marketers do no create them either. Marketing is helping the consumer learn what they want based on their societal influences. There are many different types of needs and marketing helps consumers learn which ones matter most to them and in order to create a want for their products. The want is not enough though, demand is the key. A demand is the want for a specific product with ability to pay. So, I would say that marketing helps consumers shape their wants into demand for their products. An example, my father used a flip phone until 4 years ago. He finally went to mobile store because he had broken his phone again. He asked the salesman for another phone but they didn’t have anymore flip phones. He explained that he used the phone for his business and just wanted to be able to call the office and have his secretary look up equipment information on the internet or tell him what his next appointment was. The marketer explained that they had smartphones that could maintain his schedule and allow him to look up equipment and zoom into pictures and schematics. The secretary could even send him updates to his schedule form the office. My dad walked out of the store that day with a new iPhone and hasn’t looked back. He had a need but he didn’t know that there was a better product that he could want. The marketer created the demand by informing him and he supplied the payment.

Kotler, Philip. Marketing Management (p. 9). Pearson Education. Kindle Edition.

Kotler, P., & Keller, K. L. (2016). Marketing management (15th ed., p. 5). Boston, etc.: Pearson.

Student two:

Marketing is an essential component for a business. Companies of all types, whether they offer products or services or experiences, are for-profit or non-profit, must employ some form of marketing in order to engage their customers. Successful marketing results in sales, customer acquisition, increased profits and demand, job creation, brand recognition, and the ability for the company to be more socially responsible (Kotler & Keller, 2016).

One common question concerning marketing departments though, is whether they strive to shape consumers’ needs or just meet them. Overall, the primary goal of marketing is “finding what the consumer is longing for and needing” (Leonard, 2018). Everyone has needs and desires, which are fulfilled by the purchase of some product or service. Needs may be necessary, such as food and transportation, while desires often lead to more elaborate versions of those needs. For example, someone may need a new winter jacket to stay warm, but may desire to have a more expensive one that is currently popular. It is the job of marketing managers to capitalize on these needs and desires, to show a customer how their product will solve their problem. They cannot create the need though, as needs are often dictated by an individual’s personal lifestyle and culture. The company selling the winter jacket cannot create a need for this item among customers living in a hot climate.

Successful marketing occurs when a business can identify the needs of its targeted audience, show these consumers how their needs will be satisfied, offer an appealing pricing structure, simplify what the consumer is trying to accomplish, and build a lasting relationship. While there are countless factors that play into a person’s needs, such as age, gender, location, cultural background, and so on, businesses may classify people on a scale referred to as the Awareness Pyramid. The bottom of the pyramid contains the most people and they may not realize they have a need for the product yet, while the point of it has a smaller number of potential clients but who are much more likely to immediately make the purchase. Companies try to appeal to the tip of the pyramid first, to quickly boost sales, and then work their way down making more people aware of how they can be helped by the product. Essentially, no matter how good a company’s advertising and marketing are, a consumer will simply not pay for something that they have no need or desire for. Needs and desires are created by society and individually, not by corporations. Therefore, marketing personnel are responsible for creatively meeting these needs.


Kotler, P., & Keller, K. (2016). Marketing Management. Pearson.

Leonard, K. (2018, October 25). Examples of Need Satisfying Marketing Objectives. Retrieved from Hearst Newspapers.

Student three:

Marketing is certainly an interesting animal in and of itself! While marketing may at times satisfy the needs or wants of consumers, there is definitely a point where marketing is used to shape consumers needs. Companies that can identify and pinpoint what is hot or trending, create a desire for consumers to want a product or service, or even the understanding of how a product will benefit a consumer is more important (Leonard, 2018). Many consumers have a list of everyday needs that they require. However, if a company is effective at creating a desire for consumers to recognize what they are missing with their product or service can be more effective in the long run. There are even areas where additional incentives are added. For example, if Apple advertises the newest iPad and offers a free trial, sample, or coupon for other Apple products for a review can be enticing for many customers (Kulkarni, 2016). In fact, this can be the reason why customers will gravitate to certain companies and products.

Brand loyalty is an area where many consumers were once thought to be brand loyal over others. In the 21st century, that is certainly not the case anymore. Social media, television, the radio are examples where products are advertised on a daily basis. Many people may have an idea in mind of what they may wanting; however, when information is readily available everywhere, it can be overwhelming. Building trust, making options easier for people to weigh and be able to conclusively decide, and easy navigation in which clients can be interactive with questions in a forum setting is just as important (Spenner & Freeman, 2012). Apple has been able to keep their marketing strategy simple by not allowing price wars, focusing on value proposition, core values, creating memorable experiences, using simple language, use of appeal value, and visuals have made them the leader they are today in their market. So even though a product may be priced higher than other products in their market, consumers will gravitate to simple altruistic factors. Thus, allowing for marketing to shape the need or want that they might not even know was there in the first place!


Kulkarni, C. (2016). 10 Things You Need to Learn From Apple’s Marketing. Retrieved 8 January 2020, from

Leonard, K. (2018). Examples of Need Satisfying Marketing Objectives. Retrieved 8 January 2020, from…

Spenner, P., & Freeman, K. (2012). To Keep Your Customers, Keep It Simple. Retrieved 8 January 2020, from…