Marketing Services Versus Products

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When most people think of marketing, they often conjure the image of marketing a product. According to the CIA?s World Factbook, however, a surprising 60% of the world?s gross domestic product (GDP) is comprised of services, with the remaining percentage comprised of manufacturing and agriculture (www.cia.gov). Thus, it is imperative that marketing professionals understand the marketing of services as well as products. Do organizations market services differently than they market products? For this week?s Discussion, take a closer look at the challenges presented by marketing services.
Perhaps the best-known categories of services are financial services and health care services. If, for example, you decide to have surgery, it is very difficult to assess the quality, success, and even the pricing of the procedure. By contrast, you can find out precisely the cost of the post-surgical pain medication, the potential side effects of the pain medication, and instructions on how to use the pain medication. This is a simple example of differences between services and products.
For this Discussion, review the Readings regarding characteristics of products and services that might influence their marketing.
Post the following:
Referring to your course text, identify three similarities among the marketing of services and products, and suggest why you think these similarities exist.
Identify two differences between the marketing of products and services.
Compare how easy or difficult it is to customize products and services.
For a particular service you use, explain how it is standardized for all purchasers or customized for you and why this standardization (or customization) is important.