Holistic Marketing

What is Holistic Marketing? Definition, Features, Principles, Examples, and Pros/Cons

In this 21st century, fragmented marketing is better than coordinated marketing, or coordinated marketing is better than fragmented marketing, what do you think? Is it necessary to work together all marketing components of a business to achieve marketing goals, profits, or brand image? Let’s see what the holistic marketing concept has to say about this.

What is Holistic Marketing?

Holistic marketing is the integrated and coordinated marketing philosophy that assumes the collective effort of a business is necessary to achieve its marketing goals as effectively and efficiently as possible. It sees a business as a single unit not an entity with different components.

Holistic marketing views an organization as a system of interrelated and interconnected components. It explains that for the human body to function properly every organ to work properly The holistic approach states an organization to work properly every department, business unit, or work team should work properly.

It aims to establish a shared purpose in the company and align all the efforts of the company to achieve a common marketing goal, which may be a profit goal, brand image, or competitive position. What it states is that the best way to establish a company’s competitive position or achieve success in this dynamic marketing environment is the application of a holistic approach.

The holistic marketing concept is the latest thought in the marketing philosophy. It acknowledges that everything matters in marketing and that a brand, integrated way of doing business is essential for the best solution.

Philip Kotler, a Guru of modern marketing defines the holistic marketing concept as “It is based on the development, design, and implementation of marketing programs, processes, and activities that recognize their breadth and interdependencies.” This is based on the holism philosophy that best fits with Aristotle’s quote “The whole is more than the sum of its parts.”

This concept emerged in the 21st century mainly due to social and technological challenges and the need for a broad and integrated marketing perspective. Holistic marketing is the combination of the marketing concept and societal marketing concept with a focus on relationship marketing.

Characteristics of Holistic Marketing Concept

The holistic marketing concept focuses on building marketing strategies that are acceptable to consumers and society and giving a common purpose to the whole organization’s employee teams to effectively achieve the marketing goals. Following are the common approach of holistic philosophy.

Related: Societal Marketing Concept

Holism Approach

A holistic marketing concept is a holistic approach. What it states is that you should view the various components of your organization as a whole not merely as a collection of parts.

Common Goal

It states an organization can not achieve its marketing goals if different departments have different goals. It emphasizes every department of your business should have a common goal so that the desired goal can be achieved in the best possible way.

Synergetic Effect

As holistic philosophy believes the whole is greater than the sum of its parts it tries to establish a synergetic effect in the organization. The holistic concept states that coordinated and integrated efforts of employees are necessary to achieve synergy.

Marketing Philosophy

Holistic marketing is the latest addition to marketing management philosophies. It is also one of the marketing philosophies or concepts like production concept, product concept, selling concept, societal marketing concept, and marketing concept.

Integrative Approach

This concept is developed to bring integration practice to the organizational setting. It aims to integrate business people, machines, goals, resources, etc. as effectively as possible by bringing peace and coordination.

Marketing and Societal Concepts

This concept is made up of a mix of the marketing concept and the societal marketing concept. Thus, it requests companies to produce as per the choice of customers’ needs, which should be qualitative and well work in the long run not harming the society and environment’s inhabitants.

How Does Holistic Marketing Work?

Holistic marketing has been an effective marketing strategy to stand ahead in the competition, build brand images, and increase organizations’ competitive advantages.

The working of holistic marketing starts with finding the target market, and focusing on all aspects of customers and social needs, by application of its four principles, and achieving company marketing goals with customer satisfaction, environmental welfare, and developing a corporate culture in marketing.

Related: The 5 Core Concepts of Marketing

The below picture clearly presents how the holistic approach works.

Functioning of Holistic Marketing Concept

This functioning process of the holistic approach depicts how it works, what applications it (i.e. its principles) employs, and how it achieves company marketing goals. Now, let’s discuss its principles.

Principles of Holistic Marketing

The principles of holistic marketing are its applications that are essential to achieve common goals through this approach. These principles are key tools you can effectively implement this holistic approach.

The holistic approach’s principles include four also called its dimensions or themes that range from improving the internal environment and building relationships with different stakeholders to enhancing environmental welfare.

Internal Marketing

Internal marketing refers to managing and enhancing the performance of employees and the working conditions of employees. This principle gives more focus on enhancing the skills of employees i.e. sales personnel in serving the customers way better than competitors.

You should understand that your sales personnel are valuable assets to achieve customer satisfaction. Your company’s vision and mission for achieving marketing goals should be communicated well inside the workplace. Departments such as marketing, senior management, sales, and other departments should have harmony in executing their responsibilities.

Integrated Marketing

The goal of integrated marketing is to deliver message and products in a way that generate greater customer satisfaction. It aims to integrate and ensure maximum utilization of organizational resources to make it possible for the company to deliver better marketing messages, products, and excellent service.

It focuses on synchronizing all marketing activities (product, price, place, promotion) and communication channels (advertising, sales promotion, public relations) so that every communication tool conveys to the target audience a unified message.

This suggests that the product should be produced and tailored to address the needs of the consumer. Customers’ expected financial, social, and psychological expenses should be factored into the pricing.

The distribution system must be created so that buyers find it easy to purchase the goods. Additionally, the promotion mix should convey the same message regarding the brand’s characteristics, advantages, and images.

Related: What is Product Mix?

Relationship Marketing

The principle relationship marketing of holistic concept is to build and maintain long-term relationships with employees, customers, and different stakeholders who intentionally or unintentionally have an impact on business performance.

Holistic marketing states it is vital to have strong, emotional, technical, and economic relationships with different stakeholders. It does not only consider one-time business it ensures a strong bond and aims to achieve repeat business.

For this, it is vital for your business to deliver better service, treat customers with politeness, meet their expectations, and ensure a strong bond between customers and employees plus financial entities, marketing patterns, investors, etc.

Performance Marketing/Socially Responsible Marketing

The last principle of the holistic approach considers the health of society at large. As a holistic approach in favor of the societal concept, it strongly argues companies should repay society.

The performance marketing goal is to make organizations more society-oriented by improving social welfare and security in the long run. In addition, it states a company should align with the community’s norms, legal concerns, environmental health, brand & customer equity, and work ethically.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Holistic Marketing

As the energy of a holistic approach brings effectiveness, efficiency, better brand building, etc. this modern marketing practice has emphasized for companies to think about its importance. Following are some positive and negative aspects of this marketing philosophy.

Read Also: What is STP Marketing?


  • Competitive Position & Advantage – Companies adopting a holistic approach are far away from those who do not. The holistic approach emphasizes companies make quality products and deliver better through proper coordination than competing partners.
  • Brings Coordination – This marketing philosophy insists companies ensure peace, harmony, and team spirit, and work in the same direction i.e. goal.
  • Customer Satisfaction – The goal of a holistic approach is to deliver a unified message, and quality products (service), and to achieve customer satisfaction at the fullest level.
  • Customer Retention & Repeat Business – It also tries to deliver value beyond the expectations of customers. That certainly makes customers delighted and such customers are more likely to be brand loyal.
  • Building Brand – This concept focuses on consistently changing or improving the company’s strategies and activities with the changes in consumers’ mindset. To ensure optimal branding potential, it contends that a business must maintain uniformity across all of its goods, services, and distribution channels.
  • Long-Term Success – Building quality products, achieving customer satisfaction, and building a stronger bond between different stakeholders have a positive impact on the company’s future.
  • Happy Family – It emphasizes an organization should work as a happy family all members should be at peace and directed to achieve common goals. And, should understand the achievement of a family’s goal is equal to their personal prosperity.


  • Costly – The holistic marketing concept focuses on the long term which requires quality products, skilled marketers-sales personnel, environmentally friendly products, and strategies that usually require more costs.
  • Workforce Diversity – An organization always has employees from diverse backgrounds with differences in skills, education, attitude, understanding, etc. Driving their difference towards a common goal is a challenging task.
  • Conflicts May Arise – It is obvious that when there are diverse people the probability of conflicts is high.
  • Small Companies May Not Achieve It – A small company may maintain coordination, peace, and proper communication in the organization but somehow it is difficult to make quality products and participate in philanthropic events.

Examples of Holistic Marketing

When you look into companies practicing the holistic marketing concept three things need to be considered first is, how they have managed their internal environment, their product quality with customer service, and concern for society’s long-run interest.

One of the examples of a holistic approach you can take is of our body. Our Body is only strong when all our body parts work properly. Similarly, with a holistic approach, an organization only has the strong potential to achieve its marketing goals when its all components work together properly.

Coca-Cola’s Real Magic – Another good example of holistic marketing is the practice of the Coca-Cola Company. They are not promoting the brand only they are also sharing the happiness with the brand. They launched the “Real Magic” they said is about creating a movement to choose a more human way of doing things by embracing our unique perspectives.

NcellNcell is a telecommunication company in Nepal that is a good example of holistic marketing practice in Nepal. It provides communication services and products as per the need and wants of customers. The showrooms are branded in a proper manner. Similarly, the services are excellent and customer service is polite.

Read Next: The 6 Marketing Philosophies

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