Philip Kotler

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Philip Kotler
Kotler-DSC 0510.jpg
Philip Kotler in Warsaw, Poland, 2009
Born (1931-05-27) May 27, 1931 (age 84)
Chicago, Illinois, United States of America
Nationality American
Education DePaul University
University of Chicago
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Occupation Author, Marketing Professor and Consultant

Philip Kotler (born May 27, 1931 in Chicago, Illinois) is an American marketing author, consultant, and professor; currently the S. C. Johnson Distinguished Professor of International Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. He is the author of over 55 marketing books, including Principles of Marketing, Kotler on Marketing: How to Create, Win, and Dominate Markets, and Marketing 3.0: From Products to Customers to the Human Spirit. Kotler describes strategic marketing as serving as "the link between society's needs and its pattern of industrial response."[1]

Early life[edit]

Both of Kotler's parents emigrated in 1917 from Ukraine and settled in Chicago,[2] where Kotler was born on May 27, 1931. He studied at DePaul University for two years and was accepted without a bachelor's degree into the Master's program at the University of Chicago (1953[clarification needed]) and his PhD at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1956[clarification needed]), earning both degrees in economics. He studied under three Nobel Laureates in Economic Science: Milton Friedman, Paul Samuelson, and Robert Solow. He did a year of postdoctoral work in mathematics at Harvard University and in behavioral science at the University of Chicago.[citation needed]

Views about marketing[edit]

Kotler started teaching marketing in 1962 at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. He believed marketing was an essential part of economics and saw demand as influenced not only by price but also by advertising, sales promotions, sales forces, direct mail, and various institutions (agents, retailers, wholesalers, etc.) operating as distribution channels.

Philip Kotler holds that:

"the organization's marketing task is to determine the needs, wants and interests of target markets and to achieve the desired results more effectively and efficiently than competitors, in a way that preserves or enhances the consumer's or society's well-being."[1]

He links the profit motive to the satisfaction of consumer wants and society's well-being. In order to market effectively, Kotler believes the marketing purpose of elevating consumer well-being has to be put at the heart of company strategy and be practiced by all managers.[citation needed]

In 2003, the Financial Times cited Kotler's three major contributions to marketing and to management:

First, he has done more than any other writer or scholar to promote the importance of marketing, transforming it from a peripheral activity, bolted on to the more "important" work of production. Second, he continued a trend started by Peter Drucker, shifting emphasis away from price and distribution to a greater focus on meeting customers' needs and on the benefits received from a product or service. Third, he has broadened the concept of marketing from mere selling to a more general process of communication and exchange, and has shown how marketing can be extended and applied to charities, political parties and many other non-commercial situations.[1]

Kotler argued for broadening the field of marketing to cover not only commercial operations but also the operations of non-profit organizations and government agencies. He held that marketing can be applied not only to products, services, and experiences, but also to causes, ideas, persons, and places. Thus a museum needs the marketing skills of Product, Price, Place, and Promotion (the 4P's) if it is to be successful in attracting visitors donors, staff members, and public support. Kotler and Gerald Zaltman created the field of social marketing, which applies marketing theory to influence behavior change that would benefit consumers, their peers, and society as a whole.[3] Kotler and Sidney Levy developed the idea of demarketing, which organizations must employ to reduce overall or selective demand when demand is too high. Thus, when water is in short supply, the government needs to persuade various water consumers to reduce water usage so that enough water will be available for essential uses.[4]

Writings and activities[edit]

In 1967, Kotler published Marketing Management: Analysis, Planning, and Control,[5] now in its 14th edition,[when?] and the world's most widely adopted textbook in graduate schools of business.[citation needed] Whereas previous marketing textbooks were highly descriptive, this text was the first to draw on economic science, organizational theory, psychology of behavior and choice, and analytics. It described theory and practice, and drew on findings from empirical studies and cases. On December 9, 1996, the Financial Times cited Marketing Management as one of the 50 greatest business books of all time.[citation needed]

Kotler is the author and co-author of over 150 published articles and 55 books,[citation needed] such as the textbook Principles of Marketing and Marketing: An Introduction.[citation needed] Kotler has also written 50 other books on such subjects as corporate social responsibility, education, environment, government marketing, healthcare, hospitality, innovation, museums, performing arts, place marketing, poverty alleviation, professional services, religious institutions, and tourism.

His published articles are presented, analyzed, and commented on in the nine-volume Legends in Marketing Series: Philip Kotler, edited by Professor Jagdish Sheth.[citation needed]

Kotler's latest work focuses on economic justice and the shortcomings of capitalism. He published Confronting Capitalism: Real Solutions for a Troubled Economic System in 2015.

In 2016, he became an advisor to The Marketing Journal, an online site dedicated to sharing insights and next practices in marketing.

Honorable distinctions[edit]

In 1975, Kotler was the first person to receive the "Leader in Marketing Thought" award[1] voted on by the academic members of the American Marketing Association.

The Financial Times on November 18, 2005 surveyed 1,000 executives in 25 countries about the Most Influential Business Writers/Management Gurus, and Kotler ranked fourth after Peter Drucker, Bill Gates, and Jack Welch. Kotler's contributions are described in at least one chapter found in every book written about the "gurus" of business and management (see References below).[citation needed]

On February 16, 2013, he was the first recipient of the William L. Wilkie "Marketing for a Better World" award from the American Marketing Association to "honor marketers who have significantly contributed to the understanding and appreciation for marketing's potential to improve the world."[6] Also, in 2013 he was the first recipient of the Sheth Foundation Medal for Exceptional Contribution to Marketing Scholarship and Practice.[citation needed]

Prof. Kotler Stamp issued by Indonesia.

Kotler is also the founder of the World Marketing Summit, whose annual conferences are dedicated to finding ways to improve human conditions and the quality of life. He also co-established the world's first Museum of Marketing (3.0) in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia.[citation needed].

Kotler has received 14 honorary degrees from around the world,[citation needed] (at Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest, Athens School of Economics, BI Norwegian School of Management, Budapest School of Economic Science and Public Administration, Catholic University Santo Domingo, DePaul University, Cracow School of Economics, Groupe HEC, HHL Graduate School of Management, Iliria University, Mackenzin University, Mediterranean University, National University of Kyiv Mohyla Academy, Nyenrode Business University, Universidad Americana, Universidad del Pacifico, University American College, University of Bucharest, University of Stockholm, and University of Zurich[citation needed])

Selected publications[edit]

"Guru" books that contain a complete chapter on Professor Kotler's contributions include such titles as:[7]

  • Crainer, Stuart (1998). The Ultimate Book of Business Gurus: 110 Thinkers Who Really Made a Difference. New York: AMACOM. 
  • Kennedy, Carol (1998). Guide to the Management Gurus: Shortcuts to the Ideas of Leading Management Thinkers. London: Century Business. 
  • Turner, Marcia Layton (2000). How to Think Like the World's Greatest Marketing Minds. New York: McGraw-Hill. 
  • Brown, Tom; Crainer, Stuart; Dearlove, Des & Rodrigues, Jorge N. (2002). Business Minds. London: Financial Times/Prentice-Hall. 
Prof.Kotler after a lecture on Marketing 3.0 with students at Hyderabad, India.


  1. ^ a b c d Witzel, Morgen (August 6, 2003). "First Among Marketers". Financial Times. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Kotler, Philip & Zaltman, Gerald (July 1971). "Social Marketing: An Approach to Planned Social Change". Journal of Marketing 35 (3). pp. 3–12. 
  4. ^ Kotler, Philip & Levy, Sidney J. (November–December 1971). "Demarketing, Yes, Demarketing". Harvard Business Review 49 (6). pp. 74–80. 
  5. ^ Kotler, Philip (1967). Marketing Management: Analysis, Planning and Control. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall. 
  6. ^ Financial Times (2003), ibid.
  7. ^ For entire list, see

More references:

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]