The paradoxical marketer: Interpretations, illustrations, and implications

Research output: Journal Article or Conference Article in JournalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Marketers face many daily dilemmas and conflicting consumer pressures. There is therefore a need for marketers to become more paradoxical in how they consider their own role. That is, they need to be able to combine two seemingly opposite forces in their marketing efforts. Specifically, it is here suggested that marketers are being drawn into four distinct paradoxical roles: Authentic illusionist, conforming rebel, empathetic technologist, and artistic scientist. A failure to acknowledge these roles may result in businesses becoming disadvantaged in a marketplace. However, by learning and enacting these paradoxical roles, marketers may help create a competitive advantage for their organizations. While the concept of paradoxes has previously been described in the field of marketing, the present study is unique in that it provides four specific paradoxical roles for marketers and introduces the D.U.A.L. roadmap to help effectively manage them.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBusiness Horizons
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2023


  • Paradox
  • Social roles
  • Marketing
  • Change
  • Dilemma


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