What Are The Elements Of The Marketing Mix? (With 7Ps)
Updated 30 September 2022
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Marketing involves much more than promotions because companies think about everything from conception to marketing for creating a brand. You can achieve a comprehensive marketing strategy using the marketing mix process. If you have an interest in marketing, you might benefit from understanding the elements of the marketing mix. In this article, we discuss what the marketing mix is, explore the four Ps of marketing, understand three more Ps and discover the steps required to develop a marketing mix.
What Is The Marketing Mix?
The marketing mix is a combination of actions that a company might take to develop a brand or product. These are a set of processes that the company uses for promotional purposes. The marketing mix is essential because it provides customers with a good understanding of the product or service and facilitates successful product development. By this, companies can ensure that they competitively price their products, adequately promote products and remain in demand.
It also helps companies ensure they can offer the right product, at the right time, at the right place for the right price. Traditionally, companies execute the marketing mix through the four Ps of marketing.
Related: What Is The Difference Between Sales And Marketing?
What Are The Elements Of The Marketing Mix?
Developing a company's marketing mix starts with understanding the four Ps of marketing. The four Ps answer various questions that help create and communicate a new product or service to the target audience. The four elements of the marketing mix are:
Product refers to the services or goods a company provides to satisfy the customers' needs. Goods are tangible items such as shoes, clothes, furniture or electronic items, while services involve performing actions like dry-cleaning, beauty parlour or home cleaning services. Successful marketing involves understanding the product's life cycle and creating a plan. When developing a product, plan for different challenges that you may encounter during the product development stage.
The product life cycle stage comprises the growth, maturity and decline stages. When a product reaches the final or decline stage, the marketing mix helps you reinvent the product or service to win the customer's trust. Some essential product questions that a marketing mix can help answer are:
What is the customer's expectation from the product or service?
How and where would the customer use the product?
How do customers interact with the product or services?
How is the product different from the competitor's product?
What value is the product likely to create?
Related: Top 10 Marketing Positions (With Salaries And Job Duties)
This element of the marketing mix focuses on how much money a consumer might pay for a product or service. Price is an essential aspect of the marketing mix because it allows a company to remain competitive while enjoying a good profit. Competitive pricing can influence the branding of goods and services a company sells. Using the marketing mix strategy, a business can calculate the optimal price for the product or services. A high price can discourage prospective customers and a low price can result in a customer doubting the product or service quality.
Some successful strategies for adjusting the product's price include running sales discounts, establishing a credit policy and using coupons. Before pricing a product or service, a company considers survival cost and profit maximisation. The marketing mix strategy allows you to determine if discounting is appropriate for product pricing. Often, pricing reflects the customer's perceived value of the product. Some pricing questions that a marketing mix can help answer are:
What price is the customer willing to pay for the product or service?
If the prices decrease, would the customers increase?
How would consumers interact if the product prices increased marginally?
How much does the product cost when compared to the competitors?
Can a discount make a difference in the product's selling price?
Promotion involves using marketing techniques and strategies, explaining product benefits to the customers and justifying why they pay a specific price for it. The goal of promoting a product is to reveal the products or services to customers. Marketers tie the promotion and placement elements, such as sales promotion and advertising, to reach their target audience. Usually, the marketing mix uses four types of promotions, including sales promotion, public relations or PR, direct marketing and advertising. The PR helps a company manage the company's corporate image. Direct marketing uses a single channel of communication, such as telemarketing.
Advertising is the paid communication of services or products. While a sales promotion can help in boosting short-term sales. Companies can use one or more promotion techniques to reach their primary audience. For instance, companies can use PR and sales promotion or advertisement with PR. Some essential promotion questions that a marketing mix can help answer are:
What is the best time to promote?
Which social media platform can you include in the marketing strategy?
What type of content can you include?
How can you encourage customers to review your products?
How are your competitors promoting the product?
Place in the marketing mix strategy is about a company's distribution strategy. It primarily entails knowing the area's best ideal for distributing a product. This also refers to placing products in specific stores or acts of including products on a television show or website. Companies can also use the marketing mix to place a product on the store's specific display. This helps in ensuring that the company reaches the target audience. The four primary placement marketing strategies are indirect, direct, dual distribution and reverse channel.
Indirect channels use intermediaries such as retailers or wholesalers who sell the products to customers. A company uses direct and indirect placement strategies to reach its target audience in a dual distributing strategy. Direct channels are those where products get supplied to the customers directly from the manufacturers. The reverse channel is a distribution strategy where a consumer sends the product to the business, for instance, a consumer sending recycled products to the business. Some essential place questions that a marketing mix can help answer are:
Where do customers look for similar products and services?
Where can you advertise to reach the target audience?
In which events can you promote the products or services?
From which physical or digital channels can you displace the competitor?
Three More Ps Of The Marketing Mix
You can use an additional three Ps for the marketing mix to define the marketing strategy. The three additional Ps of the marketing mix are:
This marketing mix comprises people who work for the company and different processes used to hire employees. People in the marketing mix refer to anyone involved in designing, managing and selling products. It also involves employees who represent customers and recruit and train employees. It is critical for a company's success because customers prefer interacting with professional, polite and knowledgeable employees.
Related: Recruitment Process: A Step-by-Step Guide
The marketing mix takes care of everything a customer sees and hears about a company's product or services. The marketing mix accounts for tangible aspects such as physical environment, packaging, quality, logo, website and branding. These elements provide customers with the physical evidence required to ensure that a business is viable and legitimate. Physical evidence can incorporate aspects that prove a brand exists and purchase happened.
The process involves how a business might run, how you deliver the service or product, how you package the product and how customers go through the sales funnel and shipping. When marketers explain the manufacturing and handling process, they can attract more customers. This also increases transparency in the organisation and gives customers insight into how you manufacture and produce the products.
How To Develop A Marketing Mix
Follow these steps to develop a marketing mix:
Define goals and set a budget: Establish achievable goals to understand what you want to achieve from the marketing mix. After setting goals, create a budget you can spend on achieving your objectives.
Know your target customer: For creating and establishing products or services that a consumer requires, knowing the target audience is essential. To better understand your target audience, create a customer profile.
Determine your unique selling proposition (USP): Conduct customer surveys, focus groups and interviews to know your USP. It can help attract customers and understand how a product can solve a problem.
Identify your competitors and create a pricing strategy: Conduct a competitor's analysis to identify different strategies and tactics used. It can help in creating a pricing strategy.
Select your promotional methods: Choose the right distribution channel to distribute products or services to the target audience. You can even select the promotional techniques based on the marketing budget.
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