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The End of Marketing as We Know It Hardcover – May 19, 1999


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: HarperBusiness; 1 edition (May 19, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0887309860
  • ISBN-13: 978-0887309861
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (95 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,949,621 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Remember the New Coke? A disaster, right? Or how about the commercial where "Mean" Joe Greene meets a little kid holding a bottle of Coke? A masterpiece, right? Wrong, on both counts. Sergio Zyman, who was the chief marketing officer at Coca-Cola, will tell you that while the New Coke nose-dived, it--and the subsequent reintroduction of Coke Classic--helped to reconnect people to the soft drink and revitalize a brand that was losing market share to Pepsi. And as for "Mean" Joe Greene, while people loved the ad, it wasn't doing what good marketing should do: sell product, which is what Zyman's book, The End of Marketing As We Know It, is all about.

For Zyman, marketing is not an art, it's a business. "Marketing is a strategic activity and discipline focused on the endgame of getting more consumers to buy your product more often so that your company makes more money." He sees too many marketers who don't understand this point, who are too concerned about projecting image when they should really be focused on producing sales. Zyman peppers the book with stories about various campaigns at Coke as well as assessments of companies that get it, such as Starbucks and Southwest Airlines, to companies that don't, for example, Nissan and Levi's. He believes that the old-style marketing of Madison Avenue is dead, that it no longer has the "ability to move the masses," that in today's "consumer democracy" there are simply too many choices. Instead, marketers will have to focus on sales, conversion rates, targeting customers, and creating value for shareholders. The End of Marketing As We Know It is not a primer on how to do better marketing; rather, it's a reordering of priorities so that good marketing will be done in the first place. Recommended. --Harry C. Edwards

From Booklist

Zyman has twice served as head of marketing for Coca-Cola. His message here is as deceptively simple as a Coke jingle. Marketing, Zyman argues, is not about making commercials or creating an image; it is about selling "stuff." Zyman is credited with creating memorable marketing campaigns that helped Coca-Cola double its sales and stock price. He also played a primary role in the "New Coke" debacle, which he can now claim was actually a success because it "revitalized the brand and reattached the public to Coke." At the time, though, he left the company in--in the eyes of many--disgrace. Nonetheless, the company asked him back in 1993. He left again last year because, industry observers suggested, he coveted the position of company president and did not get it. He says he wanted to write a textbook on marketing. This is it, but this is not a textbook in any traditional sense. Neither, though, is it a showcase for Coca-Cola nor a reputation-saving attempt to get his version of events aired. David Rouse --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

This is a great book to help you get your arms around the way marketing is changing.
David
All he does is assure you, in an arrogant way, that he was not fired by Coca Cola and that Diet Coke was not a mistake.
Martin Acosta
The book is well written, easy to read, and not bogged down with a lot of boring graphs and industry terminology.
Kathryn Harman

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 35 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 24, 1999
Format: Hardcover
When a colleague handed me a copy of The End of Marketing As We Know It by Sergio Zyman, former chief marketing officer of The Coca-Cola Company, I had two reactions.
One was enthusiasm. I'd learn some things from a real pro and become better at what I do. The second was a wary feeling. Because Zyman is a pro, I was afraid the book would be full of "expert jargon" - over my head, dry, and reading like a textbook.
After reading the book, I'm wholly enthusiastic about it. The End of Marketing As We Know It is a good read - Zyman teaches with plenty of good examples, encourages one to think about one's own experiences and methods, and has an entertaining, conversational tone that keeps the book from becoming dry or "heavy." It's the first book in a very long time that I've wanted to re-read right after finishing it. As someone who writes features for a business magazine and also does PR and advertising, I found Zyman's words relevant and invaluable.
Everyone in business should read this book - and not just the folks in the marketing/advertising department, and not just the big companies. Its content is pertinent to overall business strategy, because it focuses on marketing as a business, or a science - producing measurable results in the form of increased sales rather than merely running some ads that may be appealing and even award-winning but aren't doing anything for the company's bottom line.
Readers will learn why it's important to form a marketing strategy and make regular measurements to test its success. They'll learn ways to position a product - their own and their competitor's - in the minds of consumers. And that continually presenting a brand in fresh and different ways - and in different markets - is essential to keeping sales up. And much more. Whether or not you agree with all of Zyman's methods, this book will definitely make you think and may even rescue you from stale, dead-in-the-water viewpoints about marketing.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Yaumo Gaucho on November 5, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I have great respect for the Coca-Cola marketing machine, but this book does not demonstrate that organization's genius. The book's title is a dishonest overstatement. The main thesis, "marketing is about selling things, not about being cool," is hardly "the end of marketing as we know it" -- it's basic stuff any kid with a lemonade stand could tell you. Zyman tells some amusing war stories, but ultimately, he is not bringing anything new to the table. (Perhaps he's guarding the Coca Cola "state secrets"?)
If you need to be convinced that marketing is about selling things, or if you'd like to read Sergio Zyman's marketing memoirs, then buy this book. Otherwise, it's of little value.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 30, 2000
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Zyman's premise -- that marketing is about selling rather than fluff -- comes as no revelation to any marketer. We are subjected to 247 pages that, in the end, do little more than meander around this notion, which most of us internalized in Marketing 101. At least it's a fast (and light) read. The "end of this book, as he wrote it," comes blessedly fast.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 29, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Mr. Sergio is really in a dire situation here. If he can attain bestselling status with such an unimpressive collection of essays, there is something truly wrong with the public. The "marketing" he discusses is almost common knowledge of the masses.
He is a master of disguising the traditional into something which is deceptively "new." I picked up his book at a local retailer thinking it would change my entire train of thought concerning smart advertising. Heck, half the stuff didn't even make sense and the other half I already knew.
Please don't waste your time reading this overly simplistic book. Or you could, if you wanted to read about how Coke commercials can be more trendy.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By bmenides@aol.com on August 14, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I was disappointed after reading Sergio Zyman's book with the provocative title "The End of Marketing as we Know it". Old marketing based on mass merchandising with little attention to customer needs was dead years ago. What the author calls new marketing principles, have been practiced as early as the 1980's. As someone who has been a CEO and director of marketing of a number of businesses, and am now an adjunct professor at Worcester Polytechnic Institute's School of Industrial Management, I found little new in the author's list of the principles of new marketing outlined in his last chapter. I am surprised that a book published in 1999 says so little about the impact and influence of the Internet in business to business and consumer marketing.
Byron Menides August 14, 1999 Worcester, MA
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Scott McGillivray on July 13, 2000
Format: Hardcover
The book provides an excellent reminder as to the purpose of marketing....that is, it's all about making a profit. However, the book lacks depth and fails to deliver new insights that will help the experienced marketer become more skilled or knowledgeable.
If you are looking for a simple, easy to read book on marketing, that is sometimes entertaining, then Sergio Zyman's book, "The End of Marketing As We Know It", is a good place to start
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 28, 2003
Format: Paperback
Honestly, I was expecting a lot more out of this book. Zyman does a wonderful job at taking a lot of credit for his accomplishments in the marketing world. Nevertheless, there was not a page in the book that the word "I" wasn't mentioned. I wasn't expecting a personal story on how he conquered the markets with the coke brand. I was looking for new and original ideas that were used to improve my marketing techniques.
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