You might have heard about the Four Ps of marketing in a textbook, in school, or from a fellow marketer. But the Four Ps of Marketing are more than just an abstract idea: they are a very important marketing concept that you can use to advertise your new business, optimize your sales, reach your target audience, or test your current marketing strategy. Learn how you can utilize the four Ps to help grow your business.
What Are the Four Ps of Marketing?
Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, or processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large. The four Ps of marketing is a marketing concept that summarizes the four key factors of any marketing strategy. The four Ps are: product, price, place, and promotion.
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The History of the Four Ps of Marketing
The four Ps were popularized by Neil Borden, an advertising professor at Harvard University, in the 1950s, as part of the overall marketing mix. The four Ps of marketing are still widely used today by marketers and companies to advertise their goods and services.
Understanding the Four Ps of Marketing
Now that you know what the four Ps of marketing are, let’s break down each one so you can utilize each in your own marketing strategy.
What is Product?
The product is what your company sells. For example, maybe it is smoothies from your juice bar or jewelry from your e-commerce store. Or, it can be a service, like yoga classes or therapy sessions. The product is what you make available to the consumer. Ideally, your product or service should fulfill an existing consumer demand. The type of product or service you offer helps you determine how much to charge for it, where it should be placed, and how it should be promoted. (The other three Ps of marketing!)
To capitalize on successfully marketing your product, you need to identify why it is different or special. So, what sets your product apart from other products like it on the market? How can it win over customers and beat the competition? The key to this P of marketing is determining what it is that makes your product unique or special.
Example of Product
Many successful products and services are the first in their category. For example, Apple was the first company to sell a touchscreen smartphone that had the ability to do much more than simply make phone calls.
What is Price?
Price is the amount of money you charge customers for the previously determined product or service. The right price drives up the most amount of sales and the most profit for your company. The price also must be related to the product’s real and perceived value.
Example of Price
There are several factors that can affect the cost of a product or service, like supply costs, seasonal discounts, and competitors’ prices. There are also other reasons to raise or lower prices. For example, some high-end businesses might raise the price of their products to give the appearance of being a luxury to appeal to an affluent audience. On the other hand, other businesses might lower the price of a newer product or offer a discount to entice more consumers into buying and trying the product.
What is Place?
The third P of marketing is place. This is the place where you should sell your product and how it should be delivered to the market.
Example of Place
For example, would it be better to sell your product from a brick-and-mortar store or an e-commerce website? Or, it can refer to where you place the product within your store’s display. Place can even refer to where you choose to advertise your product, like on TV, social media, or web pages. The ultimate goal of place is to determine the best place to get products in front of the customers who are most likely to purchase them.
While place might seem irrelevant if you have an e-commerce website, it actually is extremely relevant. For example, on which social media platforms are you promoting your e-commerce website? Place and promotion are tied closely together.
What is Promotion?
The final P of marketing is promotion. Promotion includes all of the advertising and public relations that make up your promotional strategy for your product. The goal of promoting your product is to show consumers why they need it, what problem it will solve for them, and why they should fork over their hard-earned money for it. What is the best way to reach your target market? It might be a social media platform, a PR campaign, or an SEO strategy.
Example of Promotion
There are so many ways to promote your business today and so many tools available to help you do it. The key is choosing the right method of promotion in order to reach your specific target audience. They might include online marketing, SEO, social media, Google Ads, social media advertising, affiliate marketing or influencer marketing, content marketing, or email marketing.
Marketing Strategy Examples
To create an excellent marketing strategy, here is an example:
Step 1: Product: Determine what it is that you sell, whether it is a product, service, consulting, etc.
Step 2: Price: Decide how much you will charge for your product or service that will both help you make a profit, but is realistic for your consumers.
Step 3: Place: Choose where you will sell your product or service.
Step 4: Promotion: Pick the best method of promoting your product or service.
Marketing Analysis Example
If your current marketing strategy doesn’t seem to be working, perform a marketing analysis by working your way through each of the four Ps of marketing to determine the issue. Maybe it lies within the product, price, place, or promotion. For example, maybe you have an excellent product, but the place you are selling it isn’t working.
The Four Ps are Essential for Marketers
If you want to stand out from your competitors, you need to leverage the four Ps of marketing. For more marketing tips, consider joining the American Marketing Association! We offer Digital Marketing Certifications and more to help you be the best possible marketer.