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Rhetorical business – A study of marketing work in the spirit of contradiction

Nilsson, Tomas LU (2015)
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in English

This book investigates marketing work in professional service organizations from a rhetorical perspective. It comes to the conclusion that this work is accomplished by self-reflexive marketers who are reminiscent of the ancient sophists – a diverse group of itinerant advisors whom came to Athens around the fourth century BCE for business reasons. Marketers travel – as did the sophists – from place to place, from idea to idea, much like a nomad who never moves into a territory but passes through it. Employing this perspective denies marketing work a fixed context, time and place. Marketing work is driven by occasionality, carried out by a marketer who is both a hunter and a maker of business... (More)
Popular Abstract in English

This book investigates marketing work in professional service organizations from a rhetorical perspective. It comes to the conclusion that this work is accomplished by self-reflexive marketers who are reminiscent of the ancient sophists – a diverse group of itinerant advisors whom came to Athens around the fourth century BCE for business reasons. Marketers travel – as did the sophists – from place to place, from idea to idea, much like a nomad who never moves into a territory but passes through it. Employing this perspective denies marketing work a fixed context, time and place. Marketing work is driven by occasionality, carried out by a marketer who is both a hunter and a maker of business opportunities. Marketers also share with sophists a playful attitude to language as they accumulate words and ideas, and then twist and bend them

beyond recognition when arguing for business purposes. Overall this book contributes a multifaceted account of marketing work beyond the framework of conventional marketing ideas. It also shows how rhetorical theory can be used in marketing research to analyse aspects of marketing practice that would

otherwise have been poorly accounted for. (Less)
Abstract
Marketing has traditionally been understood from the perspective of marketing management. This causes problems when we study marketing practices because the normative discourse of marketing management is not particularly useful for describing the day-to-day work of marketing practitioners. This calls for marketing research from new perspectives. Rhetorical business – A study of marketing work in the spirit of contradiction investigates marketing work in professional service organizations from a rhetorical perspective. The overall research question – What do marketers do when they do marketing work? – is explored empirically through conversations, observations and daily interaction and argumentation with professionals involved in the... (More)
Marketing has traditionally been understood from the perspective of marketing management. This causes problems when we study marketing practices because the normative discourse of marketing management is not particularly useful for describing the day-to-day work of marketing practitioners. This calls for marketing research from new perspectives. Rhetorical business – A study of marketing work in the spirit of contradiction investigates marketing work in professional service organizations from a rhetorical perspective. The overall research question – What do marketers do when they do marketing work? – is explored empirically through conversations, observations and daily interaction and argumentation with professionals involved in the marketing of consulting services. The rhetorical theory applied in the analysis builds on the assumption that every reasonable argument can be met with an equally reasonable counterargument, which is not only how we argue but also a representation of how we gain knowledge of the world – namely, by contradicting it. The analysis is organized in three themes – situation, strategy and subject – that address questions such as Where and when do marketers argue for business purposes? What rhetorical strategies are used?, and How can the subjects of marketing work be portrayed? This is followed by a discussion of the analysis under the two headings persuasive marketing talk and marketing work “in-between”. This book concludes that marketing work is accomplished by self-reflexive marketers who argue for business purposes in, through and in-between meetings as they employ versatile and expansive language and enact contradictory selves. In so concluding the book contributes a multifaceted account of marketing work beyond the framework of normative marketing management. It also shows how rhetorical theory can be used in marketing research to analyse aspects of marketing practice that would otherwise have been poorly accounted for. Finally, the book is written as a “confessional tale” by an author with long

experience of marketing work, in the hope that it may encourage self-reflexive inquires among professionals

involved in marketing. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
supervisor
opponent
  • Professor Hackley, Chris, School of Management, Royal Holloway, University of London, UK
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
ethnography, consulting, professional services, knowledge-intensive services, sophists, argumentation, rhetoric, marketing work, marketing practice, Marketing
pages
205 pages
defense location
U202, Campus Helsingborg, Lunds universitet
defense date
2015-12-18 13:15
ISBN
978-91-7623-564-5 (pdf)
978-91-7623-563-8 (print)
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
2084f669-3b30-4bab-824c-1485293e09da (old id 8230820)
date added to LUP
2015-11-26 11:15:21
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:45:19
@misc{2084f669-3b30-4bab-824c-1485293e09da,
  abstract     = {Marketing has traditionally been understood from the perspective of marketing management. This causes problems when we study marketing practices because the normative discourse of marketing management is not particularly useful for describing the day-to-day work of marketing practitioners. This calls for marketing research from new perspectives. Rhetorical business – A study of marketing work in the spirit of contradiction investigates marketing work in professional service organizations from a rhetorical perspective. The overall research question – What do marketers do when they do marketing work? – is explored empirically through conversations, observations and daily interaction and argumentation with professionals involved in the marketing of consulting services. The rhetorical theory applied in the analysis builds on the assumption that every reasonable argument can be met with an equally reasonable counterargument, which is not only how we argue but also a representation of how we gain knowledge of the world – namely, by contradicting it. The analysis is organized in three themes – situation, strategy and subject – that address questions such as Where and when do marketers argue for business purposes? What rhetorical strategies are used?, and How can the subjects of marketing work be portrayed? This is followed by a discussion of the analysis under the two headings persuasive marketing talk and marketing work “in-between”. This book concludes that marketing work is accomplished by self-reflexive marketers who argue for business purposes in, through and in-between meetings as they employ versatile and expansive language and enact contradictory selves. In so concluding the book contributes a multifaceted account of marketing work beyond the framework of normative marketing management. It also shows how rhetorical theory can be used in marketing research to analyse aspects of marketing practice that would otherwise have been poorly accounted for. Finally, the book is written as a “confessional tale” by an author with long<br/><br>
experience of marketing work, in the hope that it may encourage self-reflexive inquires among professionals<br/><br>
involved in marketing.},
  author       = {Nilsson, Tomas},
  isbn         = {978-91-7623-564-5 (pdf)},
  keyword      = {ethnography,consulting,professional services,knowledge-intensive services,sophists,argumentation,rhetoric,marketing work,marketing practice,Marketing},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {205},
  title        = {Rhetorical business – A study of marketing work in the spirit of contradiction},
  year         = {2015},
}