What is the marketing mix, and how does it apply to marketing teams’ strategies? Marketing scholar and author Jerome McCarthy introduced the concept in his 1960 book, “Basic Marketing: A Managerial Approach.” The text remains one of the top books referenced in university marketing courses.
The marketing mix philosophy helps teams better understand what their product or service offers potential customers. By defining the 4 P's of marketing, the marketing mix helps teams plan, develop and execute more effective marketing strategies.
To help you gain a better understanding of the 4 P's of marketing and how they can impact your overall marketing strategy, we’ve broken down the marketing mix concept.
What are the 4 P's of marketing?
To successfully market a product or service, teams must carefully implement the 4 P's. Also referred to as the marketing mix, the 4 P's include specific factors to consider when marketing a brand, including what consumers want, how the product is perceived, how the brand stands against the competition, and how the company is viewed by its customers.
So, what exactly are each of the 4 P's of marketing?
What do you sell? Whether it’s physical goods, services, software or consulting, selling a product is the fundamental nature of a business. In addition to identifying the product itself, marketers should consider who needs the product, and why. How does the product stand apart from the competition? All of these details are vital when developing a marketing strategy. By defining the product, marketers also gain a more thorough understanding of its life cycle, so teams can plan for each stage of the product’s duration.
How much do you charge for your product, and how does that price impact customers’ view of your brand? Ideally, the price should boost sales while also driving profits. The price also should be set within a range that customers will pay for a product. Marketers can determine an effective price by linking the number to the product’s real and perceived value while considering factors like supply costs, competitors’ pricing, seasonal discounts and retail markup. Of course, marketing teams also must be ready to decide when and if discounting becomes appropriate for a product.
Where do you promote your product or service? Should it be sold in a brick-and-mortar store, or will it sell better online or both? Are the product promotions placed where target customers naturally spend time? Has your company focused on the right outlets and distribution channels for your promotions? Marketing teams must remember that not every location is a sensible place to sell every product and to every type of audience. To prevent wasteful promotions, marketers should always evaluate the ideal locations to promote and sell their products and convert the most potential clients into sales.
How do your customers discover your brand? Through what channels is your target audience most likely to consume information? What sort of message is most effective when promoting your brand? What is the best time to promote your product? All of these questions are pertinent to developing effective promotions. After all, a promotion aims to provide consumers with product or brand information and convince them they need the product and will pay its price. In modern marketing strategies, teams often merge their promotion and product placement efforts to better attract target audiences, particularly for online sales.
Why are the 4 P's important to marketing strategy?
By understanding and examining the 4 P's of marketing, teams can establish a framework upon which they can build effective marketing strategies. By examining the product they are marketing, for example, teams can analyze the characteristics that make it appealing to their target audiences. Likewise, evaluating a product’s price helps marketing teams know if it matches the market’s expectations and remains competitive with comparable products.
By carefully considering a product’s placement, or the place where it is promoted and sold, teams can determine the best physical stores or online outlets to market a brand’s goods or services. Further, by examining their product’s promotions, marketing teams can gain a better understanding of their target customer and what strategies appeal to that market.
Truly, the 4 P's serve as the building blocks of any effective marketing strategy as they inform all the basic decisions in building a promotional campaign.
When teams start examining the 4 P's as they apply to their marketing campaigns, how do they share ideas and communicate strategies to make sure everyone is on the same page? Visual presentations serve as a powerful tool for teams to compile their ideas, build effective strategies and communicate their plans with other key players. And thanks to PowerPoint-alternative software like Beautiful.ai, marketers don’t need to be professional designers to build strategies with engaging visual slide decks. Just add your custom content and let the AI designer handle the formatting and other design details for you.
Marketing teams also can save tons of time when building effective and engaging visual presentations that communicate their marketing strategies using Beautiful.ai. With customizable templates like the marketing campaign plan template, the market research presentation template and the competitive analysis report template, marketers can define the 4 P's that apply to their marketing strategies, while ensuring that the entire team is on board with their objectives and goals.