Marketing is a continually evolving discipline. Companies that take marketing too lightly or that stand still too long soon find out the competition has overtaken them. The best example of marketing evolving is to consider that the original 4Ps of marketing are now 7Ps of marketing. The additional three elements add an extra layer of depth to the digital marketing mix.
The Marketing Mix Explained
A simple explanation for a marketing mix is they are the tools used by marketers and businesses to help determine and promote a product, information, or service. In review, the 4Ps of marketing are the following.
1. The product is a service, information, or actual product that fits the needs of a consumer. It is what they both want and expect to receive. The product can also include customer service.
2. The place to meet the customer is wherever they choose to search. Today’s consumer is on the go, and there’s a strong likelihood they’ll be searching on a mobile device. Marketers and business owners must also take into consideration the type of mobile device used. This means designing “responsive” websites that will adjust to any mobile device.
3. Promotion takes into consideration the website and its products or services. It can be a mixture of advertising, sales promotion, personal selling, or social media. A good marketing mix will touch on all these elements. This allows an organization to take its message directly to its customers in a way they want to hear it. Marketers can decide whether the message will be informative or appealing.
4. Price is the amount of money customers are willing to pay for a product, service, or information. Price is also a function of discounting, credit collection, and credit purchases.
An Extension of the 7Ps
Like anything, marketing has evolved into the social media era. There are plenty of opportunities that exist to grab greater market share in this new era for marketers who understand and utilize the extended essentials of the marketing mix.
- People – Every online business relies on people to run business operations. From website design and social media marketing to analytics and content development, online businesses need the right team to pursue success. The right people on your team is just as essential as your business offerings.
- Processes – How customers receive your product helps to determine if they will remain loyal to your brand. Who are your suppliers, and what type of performance indicators are in place to help determine how well are your processes are performing? Do you have the right control loops in place? The control loop is the process management system that maintains the process at any desired set point.
- Physical Evidence – This is the material part of a service. Every service imaginable contains some type of physical element. This holds true even if the bulk of what a consumer pays for is intangible. For an online presence, physical evidence can be the platforms that people use to give feedback or review products or services. It can also be the quality of one’s website along with the customer’s ability to navigate with ease.
Is there an 8th P?
Some say yes. Productivity and quality could be the 8th element of the marketing matrix. The 8th P asks if you’re offering customers a good deal. This takes into consideration if your services are consistent, and how well features translate into customer benefits. Company positioning can also fit into this space.
Staying Ahead of the Digital Marketing Curve
If you’re not ahead of the digital marketing curve, you’re behind it. Become an expert at tracking your successes and failures. Save all email correspondence, feedback, and stats. Keep advancing your skills as an online business owner. This way, you’ll continually learn new ways to integrate digital marketing into your overall brand strategy.’
Marketing isn’t all fun and games. Sometimes it takes know-how to get the job done right. The next time you need a little more experience than you have, contact Level343. We’ve been online since there was a line to be on. We’ll lead you to the next level of business.