Marketing mix refers to a business tool used by marketers in marketing. It is crucial when determining a brands or products offer and is often associated with the 4 P’s which include:
Marketing mix also refers to set of tactics or actions that a company might use in order to promote its produce or brand in the market. Nowadays though, there are additional Ps such as People, Packaging, Positioning and even at times Politics which are vital elements to the mix.
Description of the 4 Ps
- Price-This refers to value of the product and depends on segment targeted, production costs, and ability of the market to pay as well as supply and demand. It also involves a host of other indirect and direct factors. There are several pricing strategies types and each has an overall business plan. Pricing is used as a demarcation for differentiating and enhancing a products image.
- Product-This is the item that is being sold and it must deliver minimum performance level. If this is not achieved, other elements of marketing mix will not be of any significant use.
- Place-This is the point of sale and whatever the industry, it is important to catch the consumer’s eye and make it possible for them to purchase the product. Retailers always pay a premium in order to get the right location. As a matter of fact, the mantra of any successful business is ‘ location, location, location’
- Promotion-This refers to activities that are undertaken in order to make the service or product known to users and trade. This includes word of mouth, advertising, incentives, awards, commissions and press reports to trade. It might also include direct marketing, consumer schemes, prizes and contests.
‘Marketing mix’ was popularized in 1964 after Neil H. Borden published his article ‘The Concept of Marketing Mix’. He begun use of the term in the late 1940’s after James Culliton described the marketing manager as a ‘mixer of ingredients.
The ingredients in his marketing mix included packaging, servicing, product planning, branding, pricing, personal selling, physical handling, fact finding, distribution channels, advertising and promotions. The ingredients were categorized into the 4 Ps mentioned earlier by Jerome McCarthy.
The framework of the marketing mix was especially useful in the early days of marketing concept when a large section of the economy was represented by physical products. Today, marketing has become integrated into organizations and there is a variety of markets and products factors that have seen authors attempt to extend the usefulness of the fifth P such as people, process and packaging etc. despite the limitations, use of the framework is still strong and most of the marketing textbooks are organized around it.
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