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“Marketing Myopia” Article by Theodore Levitt Report

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Updated: Dec 24th, 2020


In the article “Marketing Myopia,” Levitt addresses some of the significant reasons as to why some major companies undergo seasoned growth. For many years, a lot of companies have experienced rough times in learning the truth about how to handle the aspect of marketing (Levitt, 2008). According to the article, their focus has mostly involved the continuous establishment of sophisticated products without taking note of the declining growth. Theodore Levitt argues that most of the companies have experienced the marketing myopia aspect and that the growth industry is nonexistent. The contemporary business perspective notes that business objective isolation is one of the vital factors considered by leading business investors that consistently facilitate the decline (Levitt, 2008). The article presents an insightful argument that the top management in most of the industries focuses their resources and concentration on the enhancement of their existing products more compared to consumers.


The article proves that modern companies, which undergo a sustained growth ought to change their business objectives and marketing strategies (Levitt, 2008). This is through the involvement of elements that ensures widening of the business scope and focusing on the efforts to satisfy the desires and needs of potential clients. Theodore Levitt identifies a significant number of the major companies that once enjoyed steady growth, but did not consider identifying and exploiting growth opportunities as a result of technological advancement (Levitt, 2008). The modern industry has grown and blended with technological advances in the marketing field since it facilitates industry growth or ensures that the products are improved.

Most of today’s businesses, which operate in the competitive market, have managed to establish approaches to help guide in marketing requirements to meet consumer demands. Marketing as opposed to the concept Levitt addresses has conjured up simple but complex ideas including promotional ideas, manipulation measures, and high-pressure approaches to counter the heightening competition. Levitt uses significant examples in illustrating similar cases, such as the railroad industry, which was once considered as the most reliable and efficient mode of transport and had drastically declined the level of competition in the transport industry (Levitt, 2008). He further explains the companies which opt for consumer-based centric measures compared to the aspects of research, development, and mass production (Levitt, 2008).

In essence, Theodore Levitt uses the article in warning the contemporary industries on the perspective of continued growth and the fundamental wider business scope they should consider. This includes embracing enhanced technical expertise to ensure innovative products to satisfy consumer preferences (Baker, 2008). Product focus is the major oversight of the industry considered instead of consumer satisfaction. To maintain the progress, modification measures for their services become necessary in relation to the market demands. According to the article, contemporary understanding and practice of marketing involve decisions reflecting on the industry’s current state (Baker, 2008). This is a confirmation that the unpredictable industry makes companies subject to the case of myopia. The advancement in technology has enhanced focus on the progressive nature marketing strategy.

Some of the major factors that the article addresses, which make companies focus on the aspect of potential in today’s contemporary understanding and practice of marketing, include:

  1. Population myth: most of the companies were driven by the idea that a profit was a guarantee and that the expansion with an increased rate of consumers defined the existence of every industry. If products successfully undergo an expanding market, there is no need in considering an expanded approach to the market (Kurtz & Boone, 2014). The petroleum industry is a significant example, with innovative efforts and vital improvement based on fuel marketing and the focus of affecting sales. With the oil industry, which had never been considered to be a growth industry, there is no guarantee whatsoever against its obsolescence.
  2. Production measures: the aspect of mass production in major industries is boosted through a relative drive to ensure that there is increased production. The article indicates that a steadily reducing unit cost as a prospect with a corresponding increased output is significant. The consideration of mass production in the production industry ensures that there is a progressive pressure on marketing objectives. However, the emphasis is mostly made on the aspect of selling as opposed to marketing (Kurtz & Boone, 2014).

Companies focusing on marketing strategy, consumer-oriented values, and predictive measures can progress past myopia to a specific level (Sundbo, 2008). This involves the utilization of profit objectives in order to define the industry in a competitive market segment. As most of the businesses assert that they majorly rely more on products compared to the marketing areas, which submit their products, they tend to ignore the fact that markets, which grow and expand rapidly, give the advancement in technology (Kurtz & Boone, 2014). Modern markets are always depending on new and more resourceful products as a significant way of responding to competition.


Contemporary beliefs in relation to Levitt’s ideas are that cases of lower prices and mass production are experienced whenever sales go up. The article also confirms the obvious factors that make modern marketing competitive. They include the level of competition involving similar products, and companies aiming at up to date pioneering technology. Innovative approaches such as companies’ exhibit seem to pose a competitive challenge to the already established businesses in the market with products not keeping up with market changes (Sheth & Sisodia, 2006). For most of the big companies, Levitt proves that in the long run, this has been a disappointment to most of the companies since competition makes business lively.


Baker, M. J. (2008). Marketing: Managerial foundations. South Melbourne, Australia: Macmillan Education.

Kurtz, D. L., & Boone, L. E. (2014). Boone & Kurtz contemporary marketing. South-Western: Cencage Learning.

Levitt, T. (2008). Marketing myopia. Boston, Mass: Harvard Business Press.

Sheth, J. N., & Sisodia, R. (2006). Does marketing need reform?: Fresh perspectives on the future. Armonk, N.Y: M.E. Sharpe.

Sundbo, J. (2008). The theory of innovation: Entrepreneurs, technology and strategy. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "“Marketing Myopia” Article by Theodore Levitt." December 24, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/marketing-myopia-article-by-theodore-levitt/.


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