Marketing Utilities Performed by Intermediaries

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  • 0:07 Intermediaries Defined
  • 0:50 Form Utility and Time Utility
  • 1:43 Place Utility and…
  • 2:41 Information Utility
  • 3:25 Service Utility
  • 3:59 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Shawn Grimsley

Shawn has a masters of public administration, JD, and a BA in political science.

Manufacturers need to get their products to consumers, and they do this through the marketing process and with the help of intermediaries. In this lesson, you'll learn about six marketing utilities that are performed by intermediaries.

Intermediaries Defined

Meet Stan. Stan's company makes hand and power tools ranging from industrial grade to those for weekend home improvement enthusiasts. One of Stan's most important jobs is to make sure that the tools are properly marketed to his company's target consumers. Stan has decided to use various intermediaries to help with his marketing activities.

An intermediary is a middleman in between a producer of a good and service and the consumer of the product or service. Intermediaries help link producers to consumers and also help provide utility, which is satisfaction or value, to the people that use the product or service.

Utility of Form

Form matters and drives demand. For example, a wooden handle and a hammerhead aren't very useful for driving nails unless the handle is attached to the hammerhead. Form utility is added through the production process where raw materials are transformed into a form that is useful to consumers. Stan may hire intermediaries to assemble components of the tools his company produces to add form utility.

Utility of Time

Time is a precious commodity for many people. Intermediaries can provide time utility to customers by making Stan's products available when they want to purchase them. For example, your average do-it-yourselfer will typically find value in being able to purchase tools on nights and weekends at a retail store.

Utility of Place

Location is important to consumers. Intermediaries can help Stan provide location utility by placing his products in locations that are convenient for customers to buy. In fact, online retail intermediaries, like Amazon, can provide the optimal place utility for some customers who don't want to leave the comfort of their homes to make a purchase.

Utility of Possession

Products don't have much utility for customers unless they have possession and control over them. Intermediaries can provide Stan's potential customers possession utility by helping customers obtain possession and use of the tools they purchase. This can include extending credit, delivering the product, assembly and installation. For example, a retailer may allow a customer to finance the purchase of a table saw, deliver the saw to his home workshop and assemble it for him.

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