Strategies on Product, Price, Promotion and Distribution

15/05/2020 0 By indiafreenotes

The concept of “marketing mix” was introduced over 60 years ago. In 1953, Neil Borden mentioned it in his presidential address to the American Marketing Association (AMA).

In general terms, marketing mix is a variety of different factors that can influence a consumer’s decision to purchase a product or use a service. It most commonly refers to the 4Ps of marketing product, price, promotion and place.

These four factors can be controlled by a business to a certain extent. When “mixed” or blended strategically, they can produce desired behaviors from your target audiences (i.e. signing up as a subscriber or making a purchase).

It can also help businesses further understand their product and service offerings and the best ways to plan for a successful launch and marketing strategy.

The 4Ps were created by marketing professor E. Jerome McCarthy in 1960, seven years after Borden’s speech. They are a framework that marketers and businesses can use when designing strategies and campaigns to promote their products and services.

Instead of leaving it up to chance and hoping that people will do what you want, you can increase your conversions by using a framework. Each P stands for a different element that influences a consumer’s decision-making process.

  1. Product

Product refers to the physical goods or the intangible services that you offer, but there’s more to it than that. It’s also about the experience that users and customers have with your product. What makes customers choose your product over others? What problem does it solve? What attracts people to your products or services?

They may be attracted to the product packaging, features, ease-of-use, name, quality, design or support. The transaction may be for the physical product. But, the purchase is influenced by the entire buying experience.

All of the four elements are centered around the customer. It is important to know who your audience is and what they care about. Create buyer personas. Conduct customer research. Learn as much about your current or potential customer base as you can. This will help you make decisions that are more likely to resonate and appeal to your target audiences.

  1. Price

It is critical to choose the right price for your product or service. If your product is underpriced, consumers may question its effectiveness or think that it’s “too good to be true”. On the other hand, if you price your product too high, consumers may see it as overpriced and unnecessary. Unless you are an established luxury brand like Coach or Chanel, you’ll find it hard to make a sell.

There are a number of pricing strategies that businesses employ. Some models are: bundle, subscription, competitive, economy, discount, and psychological pricing.

At grocery stores, generic food brands are priced lower than name-brands. This is an example of economy pricing. In department stores, prices with odd decimals like “53.99” or “3.97” are psychological pricing. People tend to perceive it as less expensive than an even “$54.00” or “4.00”. It’s also a common practice in auto sales.

The strategy that you choose should be based on the value of your product, the production and distribution costs, consumer demand and competitive landscape.

Price is also heavily influenced by your consumers. Of course, you need to price to make a profit. However, if your target market is in the middle-income bracket, charging $900+ for a handbag is unrealistic.

  1. Promotion

How are you going to tell people about your products and services? Promotion covers all of the communication tactics that you will use to spread the word.

Note that promotion isn’t synonymous with marketing. Promotion focuses on how you will communicate your product to people. It doesn’t only encompass the entire marketing function. It also addresses the sales process and other areas such as public relations and advertising.

Also, the purpose of promotion isn’t to simply sell your products and services. (Yes, that would be an ideal result.) Before you can jump to the transaction part, you need to let people know what your products and services are, what they offer customers, and why they are worth buying.

Promotion lets people know that your product solves a specific need. In the promotion stage, your message should be clear and geared towards your target audiences. Tell them why they need your product and how it will benefit them. What makes your business different from the competitors? Is it a lower-price? Higher quality? Faster service? More flexibility?

Identify what sets you apart from everyone else. It is key to include those differentiators into your promotional messages. When selecting which channels to use for promotion, remember that your audience is the focus. What types of content do they consume on a daily basis? Where are they located? What times are they most actively consuming content?

Some channels that you may use for promotion are: word-of-mouth, podcasts, radio, social media, email, press releases, public relations, print, television ads, and pay-per-click (PPC) ads.

  1. Place or Distribution

Place refers to the distribution of your product. How will customers find and purchase what you’re trying to sell? Will it be sold in retail stores or exclusively online? Two of the most common distribution channels are: direct sales and wholesalers.

If you run a local retail business, you will likely use direct sales at your location. You may also offer certain items through an online store. Whether in-store or online, you are the primary contact managing and shaping the customer experience.

Another option for businesses is to sell through an intermediary a wholesaler or reseller. If you sell through Walmart or Amazon, you would fit into this category. The advantage of working with a wholesaler is that they tend to have a wider distribution network and larger customer-base.

Although it makes it possible to reach more customers, you lose some of that customer connection that is associated with direct sales. It can also be extremely difficult and lengthy process to land a deal with big name wholesalers like Walmart.

If your business doesn’t have a year-round consistent supply of products, it is not an ideal fit for intermediary sales. If your sales are more seasonal or available for a limited-time only, then direct sales are a more suitable option.

There’s a difference between knowing the framework and actually putting it into practice in your strategy. Below, we’ll take you through the process step by step with examples.