The 4 Ps of marketing, also known as the marketing mix, are a framework for businesses to develop and implement a successful marketing strategy. The 4 Ps are product, price, place, and promotion.
If you are a business owner, or have dabbled in marketing at any point in your life, these concepts are probably familiar to you. However, it’s always good to go back to the basics and refine your strategy. In this article, we will explore each element in detail, and how they work together to create a comprehensive marketing strategy.
- Product. Product is the physical product or service that a business is offering. This includes the design, features, packaging, and branding of the product. To develop a successful product, a business must consider the needs and wants of their target market, and ensure that it meets the needs of the consumer. Another thing to consider is whether or not your product fills a need in the market.
If you are starting a new business, or simply expanding upon an existing one, it’s usually wise to survey your local competition to see if there are any gaps in the market left by your competitors. These gaps can often present valuable opportunities for profitable expansion. Similarly, if the market is saturated with a specific product or service that you were considering selling, consider shifting gears to focus on another product entirely, or find a way to set yourself above the competition. If you are expanding on a current product line or existing business, it’s important to consider if your new product compliments your current ones.
Case Study: Splash Café Hot Sauce and BBQ Rubs
Splash Café expanded its product line to include hot sauces and specialty BBQ rubs to compliment their unique seafood dishes. These new products are an example of finding profitable gaps in the market while also remaining relevant to the existing brand. They approached Simply Clear Marketing for help with product placement, graphic design, and packaging. SCM helped redesign the Hot Sauce and Seasonings containers to fit the overall Splash Café brand and provide a better go to market product.
- Price. Price is a crucial element of the 4 Ps of marketing, and it is essential for businesses to set a price that is not only competitive but profitable. Many of you reading this may skim over this section if you’ve already decided on a fair price for your product. However, with the recent rise of inflation, cost of living, and fluctuating taxes, you have to make sure you’re priced well in the current market.
The price of a product or service depends on various factors, such as the cost of production, the level of competition in the market, and the perceived value of the product by the target audience. One of the most critical factors that a business must consider when setting prices is the cost of production.
This includes the cost of raw materials, labor, marketing, and distribution. And don’t forget to factor in the cost of your time as a business owner and the expertise or craftsmanship needed to create your product.
For example, a painting sold at a gallery may only take a few days to create, but it also took years of practice for that skill to be developed. The price you set for your product must cover all these costs and still leave you with a reasonable profit.
The perceived value of the product by the target audience is also an essential factor in determining the price. The more unique and high quality a product is perceived to be, the higher the price can be. Back to the artist example, a well known artist such as Banksy can sell his work for millions of dollars, while someone else could make something in a very similar style and receive a fraction of that amount. This can also be known as prestige pricing, and it can be applied to almost any business model!
It’s worth noting that pricing strategies can vary from business to business and industry to industry. Some businesses may choose to adopt a premium pricing strategy to reflect the exclusivity or luxury of their product, while others may choose to set a lower price to appeal to frugal consumers.
- Place. This includes the channels through which the product is made available to the consumer, such as retail stores, online, and direct-to-consumer sales. It’s essential to choose the right channels to reach your target market and to make your product easily accessible to your customers. Here are some of the most profitable channels:
- Personal selling involves interacting with customers one-on-one to sell a product or service. It is often used in industries such as real estate, insurance, and financial services. Personal selling can be an effective way to build relationships with customers, understand their needs, and provide personalized solutions.
- Retail stores: This is the most traditional way to sell products to customers. Retail stores can be either brick-and-mortar locations or online stores, and they can be owned and operated by the company or by a third-party retailer. Retail stores provide customers with a hands-on shopping experience and allow companies to showcase their products in an attractive way.
- Direct-to-consumer: With the rise of e-commerce, many companies are now selling their products directly to consumers through their own websites. This can be a more cost-effective option than selling through third-party retailers, as it allows you to avoid paying commission fees. Direct-to-consumer sales can also help you build stronger relationships with your customers and gather valuable data on their shopping habits.
- Wholesale: Some companies choose to sell their products wholesale to other businesses, who then sell them to consumers. This can be a good option if you don’t have the resources to sell directly to consumers or want to focus on manufacturing your products.
- Distributors: Distributors act as intermediaries between manufacturers and retailers. They purchase products from manufacturers at a discounted price and then sell them to retailers at a markup. This can be a good option if you don’t want to deal with the logistics of selling your products to retailers.
- Events: Some companies sell their products or services at events, such as trade shows, pop-up shops, or farmers markets. These events can be a great way to reach new customers and generate buzz around a product or service.
- Promotion.This includes advertising, sales promotions, public relations, and personal selling. A business must choose the appropriate promotional methods to reach their target market and effectively communicate the benefits of their product.
- At Simply Clear Marketing, we strongly recommend using various digital advertising techniques—such as product placement, sponsorships, or endorsements—to reach your target audiences and build your brand image. Meta and Google ads have been a great way for our clients across various industries to successfully bring in new customers and increase their reach. Even when the economy can be rocky, digital advertising can still be a low risk way to increase sales. New to digital advertising? Our blog and e-book break down everything you need to know to launch a successful campaign!
- Sales promotion involves offering incentives to encourage customers to buy a product or service. This can include discounts, coupons, contests, or loyalty programs. It’s often used to create urgency and increase sales within a short period. Sales promotions can be an effective way to generate interest in a product or service, increase customer loyalty, and drive sales. If you have inventory that isn’t moving or are trying to get some eyes on a new service, a sale promotion is a great way to boost awareness for that product! It’s important to not hold too many of these, however, because customers will stop purchasing your product when there isn’t a sale. This will cheapen your brand, and it isn’t a viable business model.
- Public relations involves creating a positive image of a business through media coverage and other communication channels. It includes activities such as press releases, media events, and social media engagement. PR can help you build brand reputation, increase awareness, and manage your public image.
- Personal selling involves interacting with customers one-on-one to sell a product or service. It’s often used in industries such as real estate, insurance, and financial services. Personal selling can be an effective way to build relationships with customers, understand their needs, and provide personalized solutions. This form of promotion tends to be perfect if you are selling a high-value service. However,for smaller product sales, it can be very time consuming and the general ROI is low.
Considering these four elements will ensure that you have a holistic approach to your marketing efforts. It will give your future strategies a well rounded approach and guarantee a well-constructed marketing strategy.
Need help getting started or fine-tuning your approach? Our experts at Simply Clear Marketing can help make your marketing dreams a reality. Contact us today for a free consultation to learn how digital marketing can benefit you!