Marketing mix is the process of designing and integrating various elements of marketing in such a way as to ensure the achievement of organization’s objectives. The elements of marketing mix have been classified under four heads. That is why marketing mix is said to be a combination of 4 P’s. These are the four critical elements in marketing the organization’s products and business.
The 4P’s are: 1. Product (or Service) 2. Price 3. Promotion 4. Place.
As shown in Fig. 5.1:
Product refers to the goods and services than an organization offers to its customers. It is anything that is capable of satisfying customer needs. Physical products include tangible goods like grocery items, garments etc. Services are intangible products, which are offered and purchased by consumers. Product is the key element of any marketing mix.
The decisions concerning product may relate to:
a. Brand name.
d. Quality Safety.
h. Accessories and services.
Price refers to how much an organization charge for its product or service. Price fixation is an important aspect of marketing. Pricing is a marketing function, which has an important role to play in marketing decisions.
The following factors determine the price of a product:
a. Demand for a product or service.
c. Distribution channels.
d. Competitors’ costs and strategy price offers.
e. Other environmental factors like economy, government’s policies, etc.
Promotion refers to the advertising and selling part of marketing. Promotion refers to using methods of communication with two objectives, one is to inform the existing and potential customers about a product, and second is to persuade customers to buy the product. The purpose of promotion is to get people understand the product, its use and its need.
Promotion decisions include:
b. Public relations.
c. Personal selling.
d. Sales promotions.
Place is another important element of marketing mix. Once the goods are manufactured, packaged, priced and promoted, they must be made available to the consumers. Activities related to placing the products are covered under this element of marketing-mix.
It consists of decisions relating to:
a. Channels of distribution.
b. Physical distribution.
Channels of distribution refer to the individuals and organizations, which facilitate moving the goods from manufactures to consumers. Physical distribution helps in regular and smooth flow of goods. It involves transportation, warehousing, material handling and inventory control.