All About Defensive Marketing (With Examples)

Paridhi Mehrotra Paridhi Mehrotra
Sep 23, 2021 4 min read
All About Defensive Marketing (With Examples)

There are four main types of marketing techniques that are being commonly applied these days - offensive marketing, defensive marketing, guerilla marketing, and flanking marketing. Among these, defensive marketing is known to be the most revered one due to the low risks attached to it. Read on to know everything about defensive marketing and some well-known examples too!

What is Defensive Marketing?
Top 3 Types of Defensive Marketing
Pros and Cons of Defensive Marketing

What is Defensive Marketing?

As the name suggests, defensive marketing incorporates a protective approach towards the consumers, irrespective of the skyrocketing competition. Once this mode is put into practice, much of the experimentation processes come to a halt. It is essential to understand that the company’s actual β€œdefense” is regarding its position in the market, not the products sold.

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Top 3 Types of Defensive Marketing

The following three types are the best way to provide a deep insight into the core aspects of defensive marketing. Whichever form is applied, the test remains the same - the status of the company should not be degraded due to fluctuations in the market. This categorization is solely based on the means applied. They can be applied individually as well, based on the needs.

Position Defense

The existing position of the respective company in the market is to be maintained at any cost. One of the most important strategies applied is the deepening of all old bonds catering to customer satisfaction. This one is more prone to be the victim of offensive players.

Mostly, a single best-selling product is set as the focus. Accordingly, other parameters are modified to suit the economic conditions while building the brand name continuously.

Example of Position Defense

The automobile giant Mercedes prefers to stick to the same routine, irrespective of similar attempts being made by Toyota.

On the other hand, Apple does not focus on increasing the RAM of iOS devices by copying other brands. This helps the tech-savvy people rely on the quality.

Ultimately, the standards remain high and the position does not plummet at all.

Mobile Defense

A lot of changes are made in the direction of β€œnot losing the current position”. The steps taken are mostly for backing up the company so that the diversity in products helps in compensating at all levels. The changes include broadening the target market, enhancing promotional mechanisms, adding more products to the catalog, and altering market segments each time.

Example of Mobile Defense

The widely known Indian Tobacco Company (popularly abbreviated as ITC) forms the best example for this category of developmental defense marketing. ITC has spread its scope to food ventures (the daily essential Aashirvaad wheat), and other significant commodities. Agribusiness is also a new inclusion, leading to even more profits with the increase in demand.

Counter-Offensive Defense

It is not just an exclusive type of marketing, but also another way of promoting defensive strategies. The simplest way to defend the position is to nullify the various downgrading attempts made by attacking companies. Mainly, the attack is dodged in such a way that it turns beneficial for the recipient company. Prices are reduced and products are improved.

Example of Counter-Offensive Defense

Almost all beauty brands have incorporated organic products in order to suppress the increasing popularity of purely organic brands. This increases the range and helps them grow at the same time. If the organic companies begin including synthesized products to tackle this attack, this would be regarded as a counter-offensive move in the direction of probable profits.

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Pros and Cons of Defensive Marketing

Pros of Defensive Marketing

  • The quality is top-notch due to reduced modifications.
  • Customer satisfaction is ensured at all levels.
  • The scope of devaluation is increased.

Cons of Defensive Marketing


Now the doubt is - how is it a breakthrough? In such uncertain times, taking calculated risks has become the new norm. In other words, defensive marketing is an apt real-life depiction of how an investor or strategist looks before leaping. It is widely believed that this type of marketing is widely being used to balance the economy and maintain the flow of incoming ideas.


What is the difference between defensive marketing and offensive marketing?

In defensive marketing, the organization focuses on its own betterment while offensive marketing techniques are driven by downgrading principles.

The trends can be easily identified through a budget decline, use of media in promotions, propagation of defensive newsletters, and much more. These trends help in further streamlining the strategies so that the past mistakes do not overpower the sudden change in marketing technique.

What are the top strategies useful in the implementation of defensive marketing?

There are five Ps that make defensive marketing successful - pricing, partial distribution, product improvement, prudent advertisement, and the powerful awakening of the market. They help in managing even the most obsolete brands and making them shine in no time.

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