The 4 Ps – Product, Price, Place and Promotion – of Marketing – time for a rewrite
Product, placement, price and promotion – these are the four Ps of marketing. The 4Ps of marketing, also known as the producer-oriented model, have been used by marketers around the world for decades.
The growing influence of the internet has made these classic principles look a bit archaic in light of the new relationship that businesses have with customers. In a day where customers seem to know everything about your business, the old marketing mix that the 4Ps offers is increasingly at odds with how business is done today. Has the time come to rewrite the Ps of marketing?
Place – It’s not about place, it’s about any place
In an age where many businesses operate around always-on, high speed Internet access, “place” is irrelevant. When you can dip into almost the entirety of the world’s knowledge from the phone in your pocket, you’re always able to research, buy and advocate. It’s not about place any longer. Now, it’s about access.
The information consumers need before buying must now be available everywhere. Consumers bounce between what used to be well-defined channels while shopping and buying.
They research a product on their PC at home, head to a store to handle it, scan its barcode with their smartphone, and start reading reviews and checking competitors’ prices in the aisle. There are no more channels – there is only the omnichannel. The physical and digital worlds are now coming together. So it’s not about place; it’s about any place.
Promotion – From control to conversation
In the past, promotion consisted of brand-created messages, with every brand claiming its products were the best. But today, a brand is what consumers say about it.
Consumers can find opinions from real product owners online at any time, and no amount of marketing can cover up this first-person transparency. Instead of merely promoting a message, the most successful brands today get consumers to promote it for them by first delivering great experiences, then encouraging and enabling consumers to talk about them.
Price – From price to value
A brand is defined by every experience around it, not just by products. Absent alternatives, consumers have traditionally settled for products and brands that don’t fully meet their needs. But “good enough” products are no longer good enough, because consumers have more choice than ever before. In the transparency created by consumer usurpation of promotion, only truly valuable brands (as defined by consumers) can charge a premium.
Product – Focus on solution instead of product
Customers don’t care about product features or usability if a product fails to solve their problem. It’s not about the features you want your product to have, it’s about the problems that customers need to solve.
People – Two components to people
There are two components to People. The people who help you spread the word about the business. People who love your brand will introduce you to your new customers. 50% of advocates recommend a brand because they had a good experience with a product or service. Building strong and engaging relationships with your customers is key to the successful communication of your product or service offering.
And than there is your staff – engaged employees help make happy customers. While many studies show there is a direct correlation between a healthy, productive culture and a company’s bottom line, the majority of companies spend little time thinking, let alone doing anything about, this topic – even when they’re spending lots of time thinking about their four Ps.
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