Is Customer Service the New Marketing?

That’s the question asked and answered in a panel conversation hosted by Software Advice.

The question is a good one, and relates directly to a topic often covered on this blog, which is the role of marketing in the digital age.

You all know that I firmly believe that the role of marketing has expanded to include almost all functions of a business, mostly due to the fact that the internet has made consumers more powerful than ever before. And marketing’s efforts can be undone with one bad sales or customer service or product design error. And so marketing has the responsibility to get involved and make decisions at all levels.

Today, good companies realize the power and the voice of the consumer. And they cater to them with this in mind. Good customer experiences mean stronger word of mouth and potential brand advocates that can help spread your message more efficiently than any marketer. That’s all true.

But is customer service the new marketing? Taken literally, the question seems a bit silly. I’d phrase my answer this way:

The new marketing includes customer service as one of its many important functions.

How would you answer that question? Share your thoughts in the comments below.