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.
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