Mindful Marketing: A Key Antecedent for Positive Marketing Outcomes

Mindful Marketing: A Key Antecedent for Positive Marketing Outcomes

Ahmet Bayraktar (Bozok University, Turkey)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6635-1.ch001
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Abstract

Mindful marketing, a customer-centric approach, is an increasingly significant concept in marketing literature that considers both sellers' and buyers' interests at the same time. Considering the mindfulness concept as a form of marketing approach along with its conceptualization and meaning, this chapter introduces the importance of “mindful marketing approach” for positive marketing by discussing how mindful marketing contributes to firms' social responsibility, environmental concern, and consumer and societal well-being. In other words, it discusses how mindful marketing leads to ideal marketing by helping an organization improve individual and societal well-being while at the same time helping the organization and its stakeholders enjoy profits or increased business.
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Introduction

Although there has been an increasing interest in social responsibility, environmental concern and consumer-well being for enhancing consumer and public perceptions of profit-seeking enterprises, the practice of marketing cannot be conceptualized as a positive notion in society due to the historical marketing practices of many firms that clearly have no interest in improving the lives of customers and societal well-being. The acrimonious public perception of marketers and the historical state of marketing field have motivated many researchers and practitioners to take actions in order to push the marketing discipline back towards its ideals to benefit individual citizens and societies as well as businesses. Despite the growing interest among researchers and practitioners in how marketing might be more positively conceptualized and practiced, the “positive marketing” concept has not yet been explicitly defined. After all, most modern textbooks acknowledge that marketing leads to beneficial outcomes for both customers and marketers. The relationship school of thought has been founded on this notion. Several other scholars extend the perceived benefits of marketing potentially to all stakeholders. Marketing serves to co-create value, improves the quality of life, and benefits communities and society at large (Drucker, 1958; Sheth & Sisodia, 2006; Sheth & Uslay, 2007). Therefore, much of the meaning of positive marketing is confused in translation. After all, is not marketing supposed to be positive to be effective? And how can it recur and lead to relationships if it is not positive to key stakeholders?

This study introduces and conceptualizes “mindful marketing,” which is considered an essential antecedent for positive marketing outcomes. It introduces the importance of “mindful marketing approach” for positive marketing by discussing how mindful marketing contributes to firms’ performance and social responsibility, environmental concern and individual and societal well-being. It attempts to define positive marketing based on mindful marketing approach and develops propositions based on mindfulness and marketing literature.

The organization of the rest of the book chapter is as follows: first, it provides a review of the emerging literature on mindfulness, organizational mindfulness and mindful marketing. Second, it introduces the concept of positive marketing and discusses how mindful marketing leads to positive marketing outcomes, introducing a conceptual framework and propositions. Finally, it concludes with managerial and practical implications.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Positive Marketing: An approach to marketing that seeks ways to create win-win strategies for parties involved in the exchange process while at the same time protecting the third party’s rights by mindfully aligning marketing functions with organization’s and consumers’ interests in mind during each step of the marketing process.

Organizational Mindfulness: The combination of ongoing scrutiny of existing expectations, continuous refinement and differentiation of expectations based on newer experiences, willingness and capability to invent new expectations that make sense of unprecedented events, a more nuanced appreciation of context and ways to deal with it, and identification of new dimensions of context that improve foresight and current functioning ( Weick & Sutcliffe, 2001 , pp. 42).

Mindless Marketing: The traditional view of marketing where the prevalent goal is to sell more through market exchange, and therefore increase consumption ( Sheth & Uslay, 2007 ; Sheth et al., 2011 ) which leads to economic, environmental and societal problems.

Mindfulness: A way of working marked by a focus on the present, attention to operational details, willingness to consider alternative perspectives, and an interest in investing and understanding failures ( Ndubisi, 2012 , pp. 628).

Mindful Marketing: A customer-centric approach that considers both sellers’ and buyers’ interests at the same time and that seeks ways to create win-win strategies by thoughtfully aligning marketing functions with consumers’ interests in mind, and avoid being involved in wasteful, unethical, and selfish marketing practices ( Sheth & Sisodia, 2006 ).

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