There are eight functions are essential to the marketing of all goods and they are: buying, selling, transporting, storing, grading, financing, risk taking, and securing market information. Name a product for which all eight marketing functions listed above do not need to be performed by someone somewhere in the marketing system. Explain your thinking about what functions do not need to be performed?

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In a sense, this account of marketing goods is based, as the other responder has mentioned, on an older economic model in which large companies manufacture and sell physical objects. The new economy is increasingly moving toward services and intangible "goods." Many of the eight functions are only minimally relevant to digital goods and are potentially irrelevant to services. They are equally irrelevant to new customized products such as books-on-demand or on-demand additive manufacturing. 

Let us take freelance writing as an example of a new economy product. A freelancer does need to do some market research in the sense of finding one or more clients who will pay for writing, but that research is limited in scope. As a writer, one does not really need to buy any product inputs other than a computer and access to WiFi. Storage and transportation are equally trivial in that temporarily storing a text file on your computer can be done with a single click. Similarly, transportation consists of the trivial task of clicking a button to send an email attachment or submit text on a platform. Although one obviously needs to balance one's own personal income and expenditures, as a business, one does not really need to engage in financing.

The same would hold true of many other products sold in new and innovative ways. For example, one of my friends is a personal chef. He grows most of the food he makes on his own organic farm and often barters for the rest, exchanging cooked food for spare eggs or meat from other local farmers. He does a limited amount of shopping for products he does not grow himself. For transport, his customers visit his farm to pick up food. He does no official marketing at all. Word of mouth made him extremely successful, and he has a long waiting list of potential customers; he has as many regular subscribers as he can cook for and actively discourages publicity so he can focus on cooking. His "market information" consists of talking to people when they pick up food at his farm and getting a sense of what they like so that he can cook food that fits well into their lifestyles and personal tastes. He harvests fruits and vegetables and collects eggs right before he cooks them and has a pantry and large commercial refrigerator and freezer for storage; rather than having a separate workplace, he built a commercial kitchen into his home. In this way, he is typical of a new entrepreneurial economy which communicates with customers over social media and mobile phones and addresses small niche markets.

The model of the platform economy, including such places as Upwork, Uber, eBay, and others is rapidly changing marketing traditions and production methods.

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While most of these functions are important for most kinds of goods, there are certain goods for which one or more of these functions are not necessary.  This is becoming truer and truer in our “new economy” that is dominated by the internet.

As an example of this, we can think about the selling of digital goods.  These are things like downloads of a season of some television show.  There are two of these functions that do not really need to be performed when this sort of good is being sold.  First, there is not really much storage needed.  Of course, there do need to be servers somewhere that have a master copy of the season of shows so that copies can be sent to those who buy them.  However, this is a very minor amount of “storage” when compared to something like physical DVDs or books.  Second, there is little need for grading of these goods.  Grading is something that is done when a firm has large numbers of a product and needs to be sure they are all up to standard.  With computer files like that of the television show (or Windows 8.1), there is no need for this.  Thus, even though these computer files are goods that can be sold for large amounts of money, they do not need all of these marketing functions.

In today’s economy, there is also a good deal of buying and selling that is done between consumers and very small merchants who are using eBay or Etsy or some other online means of selling their products.  Again, there are two marketing functions that are not particularly necessary to such small merchants.  One of these is likely to be financing.  Last month, I bought an embroidered sew-on patch from a merchant on Etsy.  I doubt that she needed to finance her inventory of these patches.  When inventories are so low, financing is not necessary.  In addition, securing market information is likely to important for small merchants like this.  These sellers do not do enough volume in sales to make it worth it to them to try to determine who their customers are or what their competitors are doing. 

Thus, our new economy has brought about the rise of electronic computer files that do not need much storage or grading and has allowed for the existence of many small merchants who do not need financing and do not need to secure market information.

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