The history of marketing dates back to the beginning of commerce. For as long as people have been selling goods and services in a competitive atmosphere, marketing has been an essential aspect of the sales process. In reality, the basic ideas of marketing have changed little from the word of mouth marketing that took place during the Stone Age to the use of a Digital Asset Library in the twenty-first century; convince other people to exchange something of value for a product. What has changed over the centuries is the means of transmitting the message from seller to potential buyer.
Yelling out to the crowds in a market and showing choice cuts of meat or offering samples of cheese were probably some of the first forms of crude marketing (and it still happens pretty much the same way in town markets throughout the world). As people were able to establish their own stores outside of the marketplace, signs with symbols meant to convince people to buy their product were put up to act as a basic form of brand recognition. As literacy increased, the brand names of businesses along with written logos were eventually being used on such signs.
The printing press likewise facilitated a means of marketing to a more literate public with advertising carried out in newspapers. As the Industrial Revolution gained speed, products could be marketed to a much greater number of people as improvements in transportation drastically cut the travel time between cities. The next big step in the evolution of marketing came about shortly thereafter with the advent of the radio. Now, marketing campaigns could immediately and easily reach thousands of people with very little effort and jingles could be used as marketing assets. Television was the next step in marketing and was similar but added the invaluable capability of transmitting visual messages to a large audience. By this time, a semblance of the basic, direct marketing that occurred in the first markets had been attained but it was still a one way conversation even if it did reach a far greater number of potential buyers.
After television, the next step in marketing came with the jump in technology that gave us computers and the Internet. Marketing could take on a more direct, focused, and personal approach and thus was nearing the one on one conversations between seller and buyer that take place in traditional markets. It hadn’t quite gotten to that point, however, until the recent social media revolution.
Now, there is a true digital semblance of the marketplaces where people have bought and sold products for over 10,000 years because of the direct and personal contact (albeit digital) between buyer and seller and the ability for buyers to get information about products from peers via online social platforms. This brings us to the latest step in the evolution of marketing, Digital Asset Management. As marketing via social media and the Internet increases in importance, a global market with requisite increased global competition combined with marketers that work in distributed environments necessitates Digital Image Management, Video Content Management, and Online Digital Asset Management of most marketing assets.