Marketing Mix stands as a foundation model in marketing.
It helps business organizations in adoption of effective marketing strategies.
It represents the combination of marketing tools deployed by a business in pursuit of its marketing-related objectives.
Globalization has brought significant transformation in business environment.
In the race for survival, business organizations have to bring necessary changes in their marketing strategies to cope with the competitive world.
Effective management of the Marketing Mix enables marketers in managing an organization’s budget to achieve its aspired objectives.
A Marketing Mix stands as the potent set of marketing tools at the disposal of a business for marketing its products or services to its target customers.
Neil Bordon outlined how marketers develop and execute a successful marketing plan.
Identifying and arranging the elements of its marketing mix enables a business to make profitable marketing decisions at every stage.
Marketing Mix encompasses several aspects of business and marketing that business needs to keep in mind.
An effective marketing strategy is formulated to catch the attention of targeted customers toward a product or service.
Various decisions in this context assist a business to:
- Develop its strengths and limit its weaknesses.
- Become more competitive.
- Become adaptable in the market.
- Improve profitable collaboration among various stakeholders.
Marketing Mix: Connotation
Marketing Mix is a tool applied for:
- Ensuring a successful marketing process by analyzing the consumer’s needs.
- Determining the cost to be incurred on the product or service.
- Deciding a proper distribution channel.
- Communicating the product idea and information to the customers.
- Developing a strong marketing team.
- Channelizing the marketing activities.
- Adjusting to the market environment.
To start with, the concept of Marketing Mix denoted 4 Ps: Product, Price, Place and Promotion.
Eventually, it expanded its scope to incorporate Services as well and included People, Process and Physical Evidence.
Role Of Marketing Mix In Business
The Importance Of Marketing Mix Stems From The Factors Such As:
- Helps in a clean mix creation.
- Helps in new product development.
- Helps increase the product portfolio.
- Directs improvement in business.
- Aids product differentiation.
- Infuses dynamism in business and its growth.
Elements Of Marketing Mix
How To Develop Marketing Mix
1. Define Your Goal And Set A Budget
Developing an effective marketing mix starts with setting the right goals.
Establish what you want to achieve with your marketing plan:
- To grow sales
- Acquire more customers?
- Build brand awareness?
Then, determine how much funds you are willing to apportion for achieving your objectives.
2. Study Your Target Customer
Identify various segments in your target audience.
- Create separate customer profiles for each.
- Refer to these profiles while formulating marketing strategies.
3. Identify Your Unique Selling Proposition
Identify the benefits your product or service will bring to your customer. It is important to ascertain how you enjoy an edge over anyone else in solving their problems.
4. Understand Your Competition
Carry out a competitor analysis to understand the different strategies and tactics used by your competitors, especially for creating a pricing strategy.
Record important information about your competitors on a competitor profile incorporating information as below:
5. Identify The Unique Features Of Your Product
List down the unique qualities and the value of your product.
This will help when you are marketing it to your customers.
You can use the mind map when you are identifying the unique features of your product.
The Four Ps Of Marketing Mix
Since the 1960s, the Marketing Mix has been associated with the 4P’s: Price, Product, Promotion, and Place.
- The cost to purchase a product.is the price.
- The price depends on the customer’s perceived value of the product,.
- Price can dramatically change the strategy Of business. While a lower price makes a product accessible to more customers, a higher price appeals to customers seeking exclusivity.
- Either way, the price must be greater than the cost of production so that your business can make a profit.
- Merchandise for Sale Is called Product.
- Marketers must consider the life cycle of the product to address any challenges that may arise.
- Advertising, direct marketing, and sales promotion. TV commercials, Internet ads, catalogues, trade fairs, and billboards, are the examples of Promotion.
- It also includes public relations.
- Promotion encompasses what is communicated, who it is communicated to, how that audience is reached, and how often promotion happens.
Any physical location where the customer can use, access, or purchase a product. Is called Place. This includes distribution centres, transport, warehousing, inventory decisions, and franchises.
The Seven Ps Of The Marketing Mix
The 4Ps are expanded to include the 7Ps.- People, Process and Physical Evidence.
Employees, including those who interact directly with customers -such as sales, customer service, or delivery people as well as staff recruitment and training. It covers how well employees perform their jobs, how they appear to customers and how customers feel about their experience.
Process implies anything within the organization that has an impact on how a product or service is handled by employees and delivered to consumers.
Some examples are:
The order in which employees must perform tasks.
How many queries do salespeople receive when they direct customers for help.
How performance is tracked and measured. -which parts of the process are standardized and which have room for customization on a per-customer basis.
- Anything tangible related to a product or the physical environment in which a service takes place.
- Physical evidence may include product packaging, delivery receipts, signage, or the layout of a physical store.
The Four Cs Of A Marketing Mix
In the 1990s, the 4 Cs were adopted to shift the focus from business to more on the customer.
The wants and needs of the consumer are assigned an important place. A business has to focus on solving problems for consumers rather than creating products. This requires studying consumer behaviour and needs, along with interacting with potential customers to find out what they want.
Cost includes the time taken to research a product and make a purchase. It may include the cost of trade-offs that consumers must make, such as forgoing another purchase, or the cost of guilt they experience for buying or not buying a product.
How easy or difficult it is for consumers to find and purchase a product. It is worth noting that the rise of Internet marketing and purchasing has made convenience more important in customer decisions than a physical place.
Communication involves a dialogue between the consumer and the seller. This includes advertising, marketing, and media appearances. In the digital world, it also includes emails that customers either opt into or initiate, brand ambassadors, blog posts, websites, sponsored product placement, and social media channels.
How To Identify Marketing Mix
Identify your target customer and start to understand their relationship with your business in terms of:
- What problem does your target customer have?
- What is getting in the way of solving that problem?
- How does your product or service address that need?
- How does your target customer feel about your competitors?
- How does your target customer feel about you?
- What motivates your target customer to buy?
Identify your goals for sales and growth and your budget for marketing initiatives.
Select a marketing tactic that will help you reach your target audience and achieve those goals.
Nature Of Marketing Mix
The Marketing Mix is concerned with the effective implementation of marketing strategies to derive maximum customer satisfaction and profitability.
Needs Constant Review:
Marketing Mix needs to be updated with all fluctuations in market demand and preference.
The Marketing Mix is primarily concerned with the accomplishment of organisational goals.
A customer-centric approach aiming at providing the highest possible value to customers against their purchase.
The Essence Of The Marketing Process:
The whole marketing process depends upon the selection of a suitable Marketing Mix.
As all the elements of the Marketing Mix are interconnected, the marketing team has to make a proper combination of these variables.
It is flexible enough to accommodate a particular element if the market conditions so warrant it.
Process Of Marketing Mix
It is incumbent upon the marketing manager to be innovative to make crucial decisions and manage all the marketing activities efficiently.
Marketing Mix is a systematic process involving certain parameters.
- Determining Product’s Unique Selling Proposition (USP)
The USP distinguishes a product or service from its competitors.
The marketing team has, therefore, to define the USP of the product or service.
- Knowing the Customer
The marketing team must know its target market and the value the product or service will create for the customers.
- Identifying the Competition
Comparison of the product or service with that offered by the competitors to provide additional benefits or discounts and price the product or service accordingly.
- Assessing Placement Options
Placement refers to positioning the product or service in the market to provide ready access to its prospective customers.
- Framing Promotional Strategy
After determining the target market and price of the product or service, the marketing team frames the strategy to communicate the ideas and information to the consumer.
- Reviewing the Marketing Mix
Ultimately the business owners must continually check the elements of the Marketing Mix, whether they are aligned with the organisational objective, consumer preferences and market conditions. The requisite alterations may be made, if so warranted.
Salient Features Of Marketing Mix
The salient features of the Marketing Mix are:
The Marketing mix comprises four unique variables that are independent However, they enjoy close links. and impact each other in the market.
A business organization can accomplish its marketing targets like profits, sales, consumer satisfaction, and retention with the help of the Marketing Mix strategy.
- Marketing mix as a flexible concept focuses on each of its variables that can be increased or decreased given customers’ needs and effective marketing conditions.
- Business organizations need to update themselves with trends within the organizations and in the market to confirm if those elements of the marketing mix remain applicable with the passage of time.
- The sole responsibility of monitoring the marketing mix should lie on an experienced, intelligent and innovative marketing manager who will achieve expected results through the skill manipulations of variables related to the marketing mix.
- Customers should always be at the pivotal point of activity associated with the marketing mix.
Key Challenges In Marketing Mix
Over the years, marketing managers of different business organizations have faced the issue that the conventional model of marketing mix comes with limitations in being structured. The challenges that marketing managers often face along with how to combat them can be described thus:
- The traditional model of marketing mix inclines towards tangible products. However, Services despite being intangible need to be offered to customers after effective planning.
- To overcome the challenges related to services or other intangible products, 3 additional categories have been included in the 4P model to form the 7P model which is more effective.
- To emphasize customer focus is Robert F. Lauterborn introduced a customer-centric four Cs categorization in 1990 to include Cs include:
- Product to customer resolution
- A Place to customer suitability
- Promotion of customer communication
- Price to customer cost
How To Develop Marketing Mix
The steps involved in developing a Marketing Mix are:
1. A unique selling proposition needs to be decided through surveys of customers to identify how USP will work.
2. Identifying and understanding the potential customers to whom products and services will be offered.
3. Analysis of the competitive market to know prices and associated benefits like special offers, discounts, and warranties offered by your competitors.
4. Where are your customers most likely to buy a product? Your marketing manager requires you to assess placement options to identify the right place for promotion.
5. Communication strategies need to be developed as effective ones for the successful promotion of products.
The significance of Marketing Mix in the overall ambit of marketing strategy can hardly be over-stressed.
The 7 Ps Marketing Mix can act as a well-structured checklist for marketing professionals.
It goes without saying that a well-designed Marketing Mix strategy:
- Creates positive value for the consumers.
- Augments revenue for the business.
- Aids penetration in the competitive market.
- Works for the growth of the economy as a whole.
Evidently, Marketing Mix Strategy streamlines business marketing activities in accordance with resources, market conditions and customers’ needs and aspirations.
Therefore, business organizations need to take the help of 4Ps or 7Ps marketing mix models to reach their customers whose satisfaction is the ultimate aim of the business.
“One of the ways to make sure you have a thriving practice is always market. The best way to do is to systematize your marketing mix, so it runs on auto-pilot.”Lisa A Mininni