Friday, November 4, 2011

The 4 P's: Product, Price, Promotion & Place

 I was recently doing some research and I came across a Blog that suggested 3 of the 4 P's were dead. I agreed with the writer that product is critical as a company is its product first and foremost. I than offered the following support for the other 3 P's being alive and well.

They are as important today as they were when they were born. As with all academic discussions vs. real business realities you can find exceptions but the reality is that the fundamentals that the 4 P’s are based on is still solid as they were when conceived in 1960 by Jerome McCarthy. 

 One of my biggest frustrations is the hype and exaggeration of the impact of digital media and marketing in all channels…it’s simply not accurate. Yes it is a new and growing media but it is far for the silver bullet for all firms and is simply to early to know and in some cases may never be more than a fad for some businesses.
 Many brands especially low tech consumer durables industries are heavily dependent on the distribution channel for their marketing. In this example the 4 P’s are absolutely critical and all 4 must be addressed. It is clear that the company must have a good would be hard to debate this position! Price is critical as the consumer especially in low frequency of purchase categories (home improvement, auto's, etc) is evaluating price at the time of the purchase which is often on a few time in a lifetime. An in store promotion can impact that in the form of attention getting displays, packaging, value added incentives, sales person incentives, etc. Finally the place is critical to a brands image. Does the reseller project an image consistent with the brand and price, do they provide pre and post sales service, is it in a good location, are sales people trained an knowledgeable. 

 This is just one example of how all 4 of the P’s need to continue to be the foundation of any basic marketing education…fundamentals are becoming a lost art and skill and to many marketers are to quick to fall in love with the latest fad. Get the fundamentals right than you can experiment with new concepts.

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