Reconnecting marketing to ‘market-things’

Franck Cochoy

in Reconnecting Marketing to Markets

Published in print November 2010 | ISBN: 9780199578061
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738043 | DOI:
Reconnecting marketing to ‘market-things’

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This chapter argues that market agencies include the distributive devices and the ‘distributed agency’ that make consumers move, goods flow, and supply side actors prosper. It proposes to study consumption without studying consumers directly, through the many ‘market-things’ that shape them. It is based on a systematic reading of the trade journal Progressive Grocer (1929–59), which helped American independent grocers modernize their businesses through a wide array of market equipment. It focuses on the spatial aspects of the transformations of the retail business through fencing and branding strategies affecting the circulation of people and things by means of turnstiles, shopping carts, metallic rails, and dividing bars on checkout counters with conveyor belts. These strategies contributed to reshape and re-place the shops themselves, with new signs (brands) at the heart of parking lots (fences). All in all, these transformations contributed to reshape not only retail outlets, but also consumer behaviour.

Keywords: business history; grocery stores; market devices; marketing; performativity; retailing

Chapter.  7739 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Marketing

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