I had first heard about Kotler from an employee of HCL, an ex-alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad, who had said something to this effect: “…I wanted to join an FMCG marketing company a la Kotler… but something something… ended up joining HCL”.
This was as part of the multi-media pre-placement presentation for management school campuses that Supreet, Aarohi and I were making for HCL’s HR department. I remember, the three of us conferring and asking if any of us knew what she was saying. We were informed that Kotler was the bible of marketing.
This was 1997.
A year later I had my own freshly printed version of Kotler’s book on marketing management.
A much looked-forward-to book used in marketing management courses in the first year of management programmes across the globe, and then referred to several times over. One of my professors at IIM Indore, Anirban Ghosh, in fact said, “It’s one book, that should be unabashedly dog-eared, and the sooner you do it the better!”
And yesterday, I saw the guru of marketing in person, at a session organized by Great Lakes Management School, Chennai and Hindu Businessline. While I gather my notes and wits to summarize what he said, what’s my immediate take-back from the talk?
He writes much better than he talks. And while the former comes for a few hundred rupees, the latter costs several thousands!
My eagerness to share this with you, reminds me of an old incident where Aishwarya Rai danced in front of me for a couple of hours, while I sat smugly watching her every move.
So what if there were a few thousand more people sitting beside me in the stadium for that Bollywood show!