The business of delight in marketing

Why marketers should be in the business of delight.

Delighting customers can supercharge marketing effectiveness.

Delight in marketing

It was Philip Kotler who defined marketing as “…delivering value to satisfy the needs of a target market…”.  For over half a century, satisfying needs and wants has been the concept around which marketing theory and practice has been built.

Most marketing practitioners know that business has embraced the marketing concepts and companies do their best to apply these sound principles.  In a competitive environment businesses need to move beyond satisfaction.

In marketing communications and branding, far more emphasis is now placed upon emotional attachment, response and engagement. That’s why marketing, in its widest sense now needs to step into eliciting and stimulating a human response.

Kotler himself now states: “It is no longer enough to satisfy your customers. You must delight them.”

Therefore, marketers should be in the business of delight. Tom Peters used to talk of; ‘small moments of delight‘ in the context of customer satisfaction – and practitioners should constantly strive to bring delight.

While you may have to struggle to remember messages or propositions which were based upon purely rational arguments, those that elicited a smile are far more likely to spring to mind and create memorable links to facts.

Human responses and emotions are manifest throughout the supply and operations chain. Hence, approaches which delight consumers are likely to have the same effect upon managers, suppliers, intermediaries and the world at large.

Before we all start delighting our clients and customers, let’s leave the last word to Dr Kotler:

“Over the past 60 years, marketing has moved from being product-centric (Marketing 1.0) to being consumer-centric (Marketing 2.0). Today we see marketing as transforming once again in response to the new dynamics in the environment. We see companies expanding their focus from products to consumers to humankind issues. Marketing 3.0 is the stage when companies shift from consumer-centricity to human-centricity and where profitability is balanced with corporate responsibility.”


Let us demonstrate how and why ‘delightful’ approaches work across B2B, B2C and a whole range of sectors.

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