Now that we answered the question, “what is marketing,” we are going to focus on the 4 P’s in marketing. The 4 P’s are essential to making marketing decisions.
If marketers need to improve, change, or add an element into their product or service, the 4 P’s must be used! There is no getting away from it. There is no going around it. Marketers with real marketing jobs use the 4 P’s everyday but some are not even aware of it!
Don’t you think you would be better manipulating the 4 P’s if you even knew what they were? Well, let’s learn about it!
The 4 P’s in Marketing
The first P in marketing’s 4 P’s is place. You may have heard the saying, “Location, Location, Location!” But place doesn’t always pertain the physical location of a business.
Place refers to both product and service marketing. I will be using product marketing for my examples.
Place can refer to the positioning of your product. Place can refer to the segmentation to the product. Place refers to anywhere a product or service is placed, bought, planned, or sold.
Changing the place a product is or is about to be bought or sold can be an extremely common trait. Especially for products sold from big companies. Smaller companies, low growth, or service companies are less likely to change the place of their products.
Product (or service)
The 2nd P in the 4 P’s is Product. Product refers to the product (or service) your company offers to consumers or businesses. Easy right? Just change your products or services up and we will be good. Well changing your products or services is not so easy.
We all should keep in mind the product life-cycle. When products reach a certain stage in the product life-cycle, they will never sell as well as they once did before.
To meet the needs of consumers, businesses must change their products and services to meet / exceed the needs of consumers. Marketers are put to the task to meet these needs. Consumers constantly changing needs require new products.
We change the whole product itself, or change features of the product. Products can add new features like additional products and services to meet the needs of the changing consumer tastes.
Take Microsoft’s popular video game console brand Xbox for example. Xbox used to have the very popular Xbox 360 gaming console. But to keep up with consumer needs and to keep up with competition, Xbox released the Xbox One. But Microsoft didn’t just ditch the Xbox One at the drop of the product life cycle, Microsoft added additions to their Xbox One consoles to increase sales and prolong the Xbox One’s product life cycle. The Xbox One S was related years later. The One S offered additional storage to consumers, which enticed many old and new consumers to purchase this product.
Microsoft is rumored to be coming out with a new video game console soon This should increase sales and create a whole new product life cycle. More potential for more profits!
One may think that price is the most simple P in the 4 P’s in marketing. But in reality, price may be one of the most important and complicated to get correct.
Let’s take the ride share company Uber for a second. Uber had a revenue of over 11 billion dollars in 2018. But the company lost almost 2 billion dollars in the same year.
Maybe the problem stems down to the price. Are the drivers getting paid too much and that is seeping into profits? Or are drivers getting paid too little, causing for bad employees and motivation? Maybe the customers are paying too little? Should there be a charge for downloading the app? What does our budget look like?
We have to take into account our competitors, like Lift, as well. How they price their services affect the overall image on our business.
For example, if Uber was to lower their costs, how much would this affect the image of our brand? Would we be seen as the “cheapo” brand? If so, the market that we are targeting may switch to one of our competitors for a “premium” ride share experience.
Or are we spending too much on our technology for our company? Is our overhead too much?
Just know that in the 4 P’s in marketing, price not only refers to how much we spend and charge, but the affect that price has our market and individual consumers.
Now we visit what seems to be everybody’s conception of marketing, in the 4 P’s in marketing, promotion.
Promotion is easier to grasp the concept of because everyone has been exposed to it already. Sometimes when we don’t even know it.
Advertising makes up a large portion of promotion. Commercials on Hulu, emails from companies, billboards on the highway, planes flying banners, even the friendly wacky inflatable arm flailing tube man!
To unknown knowledge, people in sales are a large portion of promotion. Sales jobs are everywhere. We will always need these sales men and women. But every time they speak to consumers about products, they are promoting their product.
Companies use promotion in other ways too. Coupons, discounts, trade shows, free samples, speaking on television, community events. There are tons of various and strange ways companies promote products, even without advertising.
Hopefully this gives everyone the knowledge on how marketers and marketing managers operate. Use this to your advantage.