Int. Journal of Business Science and Applied Management, Volume 5, Issue 2, 2010
Book Review: Marketing: Real people, Real choices
Hatem El-Gohary
Bradford University School Of Management, UK
Cairo University Business School, Egypt
EMM Lane, Bradford, West Yorkshire BD9 4JL UK
Tel: +44 (0)7525721537
Book Information
Book Title: Marketing: Real people, Real choices
Author: Michael R. Solomon, Greg Marshall and Elnora Stuart
Publisher: Pearson - Prentice Hall, USA
Edition: 5
Year: 2008
Pages: 608 pages
ISBN: 0-13-229920-8
Price: £38.25
Keywords: marketing, marketing management, real marketing
Int. Journal of Business Science and Applied Management /
The fifth edition of this book makes a significant contribution to the literature of marketing by
well known authors, and fills an acknowledged void in the field of Marketing. The book provides a
resourceful introduction to marketing, and covers a wide range of marketing related aspects as well as a
precious selection of real world cases that relate the reader to real marketing situations.
Throughout the book, the authors were able to target students studying marketing at undergraduate
and postgraduate levels, as well as practitioners. The authors’ main aim was to provide a
comprehensive illustration to all the aspects related to marketing in the real world. The reader can
experience these real world marketing situations through three main routes within the book which are:
real people/real choices segments, entrepreneurial focused spotlight boxes, and end of part cases which
is based on a real start up companies.
The book is divided into five parts. The first three chapters introduce and describe the main
concepts of marketing, as well as strategic market planning and thriving in the marketing environment.
While the second part is concerned with understanding consumers’ value needs and provides a
comprehensive discussion of this value in terms of marketing research, consumer behaviour and B2B
markets, the third part is concerned with creating the value proposition. Afterwards, the fourth part
provided a deep discussion related to communicating the value proposition and the final two chapters
deal specifically with the delivery of value proposition.
In the introduction part of the book the authors provided a clear explanation of the concepts
related to the value of marketing, the evolution of marketing, marketing metrics, what can be marketed,
the marketing of value and marketing as a process. This is followed by an outline of strategic marketing
planning, namely: business planning, levels of business planning, the frame of strategic planning,
marketing planning and finally creating and working with a marketing plan. Afterwards, the last
chapter in this section is dedicated to thriving in the marketing environment and provided a clear
explanation of the concepts related to ethical behaviour, social responsibility, global marketing as well
as choosing a marketing mix strategy.
Nevertheless, in the second part of the book the authors provide a good contribution to the field.
Here they deal with understanding consumers value needs in a logical but robust manner. Through an
uncomplicated presentation style, in the first two chapters of this part the authors were able to illustrate
the major issues of marketing research and consumer behaviour. Within this context, the authors
provided a good presentation for the different steps in the marketing research process, the concept of
data mining, the different steps in the consumer decision making process, the different influences on
consumer decision as well as C2C E-Commerce. In chapters six and seven B2B markets, target
marketing strategies, positioning and CRM are discussed in some depth.
Within the third part of the book, the authors provided a comprehensive discussion about creating
the value proposition. In four chapters they provided a deep illustration for the issues related to the
product concept, classifying products, developing new products, product planning, marketing activities
throughout the product life cycle, creating product identity, effective product management, marketing
people, pricing and its strategies, estimating demand and cost and finally legal and ethical issues in
Moreover, the fourth part was devoted to cover communicating the value proposition in terms of
advertising, sales promotion, public relations, personal selling and sales management. Afterwards, the
last part of the book relates to delivering of value proposition. In chapters fifteen and sixteen the
authors covered the issues related to the delivery of value proposition through the value chain,
distribution channels and the concept and issues of retailing The book ends with a thorough analysis of
developing a store positioning strategy.
The presentation style throughout the book makes its accessible since each section has real world
implications and clear links to other chapters. Moreover, each chapter provides appropriate definitions,
clear discussion, chapter review and marketing in action cases. From the reviewer point of view, the
book covers a broad range of marketing applications and offers a precious selection of real world cases.
These in depth cases are assisted by the clarity of presentation and the authors’ experience, providing
an aid for successful learning and help to achieve the main aims of the book.
To sum up, the book is comprehensive and, a delight to read. It contains a lot of useful information
in its 608 pages and demonstrates that the authors are recognised specialists in this field. The book will
be beneficial to students, academicians and practitioners involved in marketing implementation. The
reviewer believes that this is a good book and highly recommends reading it.