INVISIBLE WRISTS TOO?
“In Econ 101, you may have learned that markets coordinate self-interested exchanges for the good of society, generally solving the economic problem of allocating scarce resources to their highest valued use. This is often referred to as the phenomena of the “invisible hand,” as explained by Adam Smith (link if you’re interested in remedying my poor simplification.) I say that marketing is the wrist of this invisible hand, as it directs the flow of information which usually provides the basis by which individuals and firms decide which things to exchange, how to price them, and where to next innovate.
In a sense, marketers act as the ambassadors between the individual and the firm. Goods and services will be provided as are communicated by the individual and interpreted by the marketer. The health of this essential relationship will determine the overall success of the economy, as if it were guided toward prosperity by a benevolent invisible hand. For me, the practical takeaway is this: if I don’t like how the “invisible hand” is functioning, maybe it’s time to assess the signals I give to marketing departments through my consumption choices.
Interesting thoughts from a marketer and an economics major. Follow the links and enjoy a well-written, readable short essay that I expect from an author with a marketing background. Also note the title that metaphorically adds “wrist” appropriately to the metaphor of “an invisible hand”.
This could all get out of hand, so to speak. With ‘arm’, ‘fist’ and, why not, shoulder too!
Also, bear in mind: there is no ‘invisible hand’ guiding the market, or anything else. That is just a venerable historic metaphor going back to Greek and Roman times for the activities of their pagan Gods - “the invisible hand of Jupiter” for instance, a wholly credulous belief.
Markets work through VISIBLE prices and cannot work without them.