If you took a marketing course back in college or during the course of your career, you’ve probably heard about the concept of the 4Ps in one way or another.
For over 60 years, the concept of price, place, product and promotion has helped marketing executives.
Small business owners and full-sized marketing teams at big corporations alike navigate and shine a bright light through the often foggy horizons that lay ahead when planning to launch a new product or service to an audience.
It used to be that the marketing landscape was a free-for-all when it came to capturing audience share – up until the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal back in 2013.
People were more than happy to share all of their private details – but fast forward to today and it’s a whole different ball game altogether.
Pressure has been mounted on companies to protect user data in a very strict way, and the EU’s GDPR laws are a testament to how serious the issue of data privacy is.
The OLD 4Ps of the Marketing Mix
If you haven’t seen or have forgotten about the original 4Ps, here’s a quick refresher.
Price is more often than not one of the most important considerations that a consumer will have when planning to purchase a product.
Equating this to the marketing mix, it is the responsibility of the company’s marketing team to observe and do loads of research the established price points in their industry, and conduct competitive analysis in order to determine a price point that is both competitive and fair for the consumer.
You can’t expect to sell a product that is similar to a hundred other products out there – this is where marketers need to research how your product can stand out from the crowd.
This process sees constant evaluation of the customer experience, collecting data about how the customer will use the product in order to refine and perfect it.
You know the age old saying “out of sight, out of mind”. Where you place your product is just as important as how good the product is itself!
Placing it at the wrong spot increases the risk of losing your target customers who will never even see your product.
Most effective marketing teams leverage on their networks in relevant trade shows and expos to maximize their exposure, and in turn, maximize returns effectively and efficiently.
This is what drives the advertising industry. Ads, billboards, television, radio, newspapers – these media outlets have been around at the same time as modern marketing existed.
Throughout the decades, media has shifted towards the adoption of digital fronts, but the principle concept of promotion remains the same – be seen and heard where your target market can be found!
The NEW 4Ps Of The Marketing Mix
With progress comes change, and change is often inevitable.
The previous 4Ps of the marketing mix has been adopted as a mainstay over the decades, and for good reason too – they worked.
But now, there are more people than ever before on digital platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – and each one of these platforms give each and every single person a voice that is able to resonate loud, reaching every corner of the globe through retweets or shares.
While this is communicative progress as a whole, what this means for marketers is to look at the shifting sands carefully and ride the winds of change when it comes to their marketing strategies, or risk being left behind.
Here are the new 4Ps of the marketing mix:
NEW 4P's – 1: Process
Thanks to the power of the internet, the concept of a global marketplace has become an absolute reality.
This means that heads of marketing departments have been coming under increasing pressure to deliver when it comes to brand engagement – which has become one of the key factors for the digital native customer when choosing a brand to support.
NEW 4P's – 2: Platforms
The success of the modern business relies on forming loyal relationships with your highest value customers.
In order to foster these relationships effectively, marketers need to choose the right tool – a CRM that can help them manage consumer data, and get the right kind of message out at the right time, to the right customer segment in their database.
However, according to a survey by Harvard Business Review, 55% of all CRM projects don’t produce results.
This means that choosing a platform that doesn’t fit in your business could possibly become a very costly mistake, so do your research and choose wisely!
NEW 4P's – 3: People
It goes without saying that the modern consumer longs for that human connection, and more often than not, brands are expected to give their customers that connection in the form of a personalized customer experience.
It’s safe to say that mass messages don’t work as well as they used to before.
According to studies, consumers are 80% more likely to purchase an item when a brand offers a personalized experience during the customer journey.
Why is this so?
Well, in the age of digital, it’s easy to forget how to be human. But on the other hand, with all the technology available to us now, it’s easy for businesses to form that human connection with a satisfied customer a thousand miles away – if they actually made the effort to do so!
NEW 4P's – 4: Performance
KPIs have changed from the metrics of the past – right now, this is the data that matters: customer engagement, response time, conversion rates, customer loyalty and advocacy on social platforms.
A hyper connected world only means that potential customers expect quick responses and live chat whenever they have a query about your business service or product.
And by logging the conversion rates when these queries turn into a successful sale, a business or an organization can then effectively map out their consumer lifecycles and evaluate their lifetime value in order to really hone in on their performance during the monthly or quarterly review.
It’s no question that technology has surely changed the marketplace since the birth of the original 4Ps concept over 60 years ago – but when it comes to customer-business relationships, the main principles haven’t exactly changed all that much.
Customers want to feel valued by businesses, and in turn, will support businesses who provide value to their lives with their products or services.
By bridging the progressive technological concepts of the new 4Ps and the time-tested strategies of the old 4Ps, you get to rediscover the relationships between the customer and business in the years to come
Future proofing your business with loyal customers who will advocate your brand and all that your business stands for.