Do you sell industrial services the same way as industrial products? Answers are vague or nonexistent. Some writers argue that products and services are comparable enough in nature that they can be marketed similarly.l Perhaps a traditional definition of a product has led some marketers to regard products and services as being synonymous and thus needing no distinction in the way. they are marketed: "A product is anything that might satisfy some human want. Products are ... goods, services, or ideas."Z Others suggest that because of a service's intangibility, inseparability, heterogeneity, and perishability -in comparison to a product's- services need to be marketed in a distinctly different way than products. 3 And another writer states that services should be marketed differently from products by recognizing a service's intangibility but building tangible characteristics into it through promotion, while highlighting a product's intangible features (such as its image).4.
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The authors gratefully acknowledge two anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on an earlier draft of this article and the Minneapolis chapters of the American Marketing Association and the Sales and Marketing Executives' Club for their personal and financial support of this project.