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The Marketing mix

E. Jerome McCarthy coined the term  marketing mix in 1963 and defined it as having 4 P’s. This concept is used throughout the world and is taught in marketing courses everywhere. The 4 P’s are Product, Price, Place and Promotion. They generally refer to the fact that a business needs to have the right product in the right place at the right price while being promoted to the right people. And so, we add a 5th P, People. 

target market

The image above clearly indicates that in determining our marketing mix we really need to start with our people, or as I call them our Ideal Client.

Identifying Your Ideal Client

The first thing you need to do in identifying your ideal client is to clearly state what problem you solve and who you solve it for. How does this problem impact people’s lives? How will they feel once they have discovered your solution to their problem? You need to get very clear on this and then take a close look at

  • demographics - age, gender, family size, average yearly income, education level, and so on
  • pshycographics - lifestyle, values, social class
  • geographics - where are they located? In a particular city, reqion, province, country, globally
  • where do they hang out online - Facebook, LinkedIn, a particular forum or group

Once you have identified all of this, try to really get into their head. Get to know them so well that you can tell their story. Give them a name. You now have a buyer persona and this is the person you will make all of the decisions in your business around. You may also enjoy our article “6 Steps to Identifying Your Ideal Client”.

problem solution

What is Your Product or Service?

The two most common pricing strategies are competitive pricing and cost plus mark-up. With competitive pricing you will examine how your competitors price their products. This becomes your base from which you may make additions to reflecta higher value in quality of the product itself and the service level provided. Or, you may make deductions for the same reasons. Cost plus mark-up simply uses your cost of the product and adds an amount for overhead and profit. Whatever your strategy make sure you don’t undervalue yourself. This is hardest when you are in a service business. For example, would you trust an accountant who charged $20 per hour? Price is also about the perception of value in the buyer’s mind. If your ideal client is someone who works as a professional and is in the upper-middle class, you know they expect to pay for quality of products and services they purchase.

pricing strategy

Pricing Strategy

The two most common pricing strategies are competitive pricing and cost plus mark-up. With competitive pricing you will examine how your competitors price their products. This becomes your base from which you may make additions to reflecta higher value in quality of the product itself and the service level provided. Or, you may make deductions for the same reasons. Cost plus mark-up simply uses your cost of the product and adds an amount for overhead and profit. Whatever your strategy make sure you don’t undervalue yourself. This is hardest when you are in a service business. For example, would you trust an accountant who charged $20 per hour? Price is also about the perception of value in the buyer’s mind. If your ideal client is someone who works as a professional and is in the upper-middle class, you know they expect to pay for quality of products and services they purchase.

place in Marketing Mix

Place and distribution

Place is all about having your product or service available to your ideal client when and where they need it. This means that in determining your place or location, you also need to think about distribution channels. Here you need to decide if you will have a bricks and mortar location or sell online or both. You also need to determine the path your product or service will travel to get to the end-user. If you are manufacturing your product, will you use distributors or wholesalers to get your product into retail outlets? Perhaps you plan to avoid all of those channels and use Amazon’s fulfillment centres to distribute your product. 

promotion

Promotion

Promotion is a broad topic that includes personal selling, advertising, word of mouth and public relations. Today it also includes digital marketing which is vital to the success of any business. Traditional marketing includes print ads, radio, TV, and outdoor advertising such as billboards. Digital marketing includes your website, social media marketing, search engine optimization – so you rank higher on search results pages, search engine marketing such as Google Ad Words, and email marketing. Whatever your strategy includes, you must remember who your ideal client is so that they receive the right message at the right time and in the right place.

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