The Marketing Mix
What is the Marketing Mix? The Marketing Mix is a business tool used to help market products, and consists of several facets of a product that must be considered during the marketing process. The Mix can help both producers and consumers consider and develop a product’s niche in the market. It’s role is similar to that of a to-do list; while it may not be necessary to have one, it can greatly simplify and streamline your marketing process if you do. The first and most widely accepted Marketing Mix consists of the 4 Ps, though in more recent times, new interpretations have arisen.
The Marketing Mix (A.K.A the 4 Ps):
The actual product or service being sold. A savvy marketer must consider all facets of a product before attempting to sell it to the public. Two basic things, among others, to consider are the type of product and the stage of the product’s life cycle.
A lot hinges on the type of product you are trying to sell. The marketing strategy for a generic, everyday product will be different than one for a more personalized offering. For example, the marketing for a consumer vehicle would be different than that of a men’s designer suit. Since any family can purchase a car, the advertising for it would be focused on the particular car itself, could be widespread and not limited to any particular medium. However, the advertising for a men’s suit would likely be placed in mediums that men are more likely to purview, such as GQ magazine, as well as emphasis being placed on the brand name of the suit, rather than it’s actual design.
How you market your product also depends on what stage it is in its lifecycle. If it is a newer product, then greater effort must be placed on establishing its brand image and its place in the market. For older products that have already proven their ability to be successful, less can be spent on overall advertising, as consumers are already familiar with your product, and your efforts can be focused onto newer products and maintaining brand/product loyalty.
The amount that you ask your consumers to pay for you product or service should play a big part in your marketing strategy. Not only will it determine any profit that your company makes, it will also affect demand and sales of your product as well, as customers will be willing to pay more if they believe the product to be worth more – a concept known as perceived value.
There are several different pricing strategies you can take, of which two main ones are detailed here. You can choose to charge high prices at first, and lower the price over time as development costs are recouped, and the market stabilizes. This approach is usually used when a company is the first to enter a new market. You can also choose to charge abnormally low prices, selling at a loss, and gradually raise them up as people start buying your product. This strategy is usually used when entering an already populated market, though it may backfire as consumers may see your product as being low quality, and may balk when prices are raised.
This umbrella term encompasses the vast array of communication methods that a marketer can use to provide information about their product. The most well known of these, and the one most people associate with marketing, is advertising. This term encompasses all paid communication between the business and the potential consumer, and includes things such as commercials, billboards, and ads on the Internet and in magazines, among other things. The unpaid equivalent of advertising is known as public relations, and consists of press releases, exhibitions, conferences, and trade fairs, among other things.
Where you provide the product to consumers is very important. It is crucial to store/stock your product at a location that is convenient to both your business and your customers. As an example, Walmart’s policy is to make sure their store locations are near residential areas, and not more than a day’s drive from the closest warehouse, so they are both easily accessible by consumers, and easily restocked.