Marketing Mix is a framework which helps to structure the approach to each market.
The mix is a bundle of variables which are offered to the customer. These include the product or service itself (its advantages); its availability (the place where and when it is available, delivered or distributed); its image (the way it is promoted) and, of course, the price which should be charged. These are some of the ingredients which a marketing manager must mix together when optimising a limited amount of resources.
What is the best mix?
A marketing manager has to juggle resources and decide on the best marketing mix. Should money be spent or forfeited on: reduced prices? Improved products? New delivery trucks? Or maybe invest all your money in a high-riskTV advertising campaign? Did you recognise the 4 Ps just there? In 1960 Jerome McCarthey presented the 4 Ps to the world. Since then marketing managers around the world have become familiar with them. Can you recall them? In addition to the 4 Ps, there are other approaches to the mix. These are explored under ‘Different Approaches’ subtopic as shown in the title map.
Let’s look at each of the 4 Ps briefly.
1 - Product – this means the product’s (or service’s) quality, the functions, the features and benefits of its design plus packaging, guarantees and level of after-sales service. Choices can be made about any of these aspects.
2 - Price includes recommended prices to end-user customers, distributor’s trade prices, cash discounts, bulk discounts, terms of credit.
3 - Place means where and when the customer buys and consumes the product or service. A Place is sometimes referred to as the marketing channels, physical distribution, logistics or location.
4 - Promotion means the promotions mix or the communications mix. This mix includes advertising, sales promotions, publicity, direct mail, exhibitions, display, packaging, selling and even word-of-mouth.
The choice of target market affects the mix.
In India, you sell one cigarette at a time, not a package. So there is a lot of localisation. The biggest mistake companies make often, is to assume that the way they sell a product in their own country is the way to put it into another country.
So the mix must adapt itself to the market.
The 4 Ps, however, is just one approach to the marketing mix. You can explore some other approaches in the subtopic called ‘Different Approaches’.