Marketing is an integral part of every business. It is one of the most important things you need to do to have a successful business. Marketing simply encompasses all activities that are done to promote a business. It involves everything that is done to bring people’s attention to a business and influence them to patronize the business. As a business owner, you need marketing regardless of the types of goods or services that you offer.
Fundamentals of Marketing
The basics of marketing has been simplified into a term called ‘marketing mix’. Marketing mix refers to a business model that revolves around four entities which are product, price, place and promotion. This model has been in use since 1984. There have been different modifications of these model since it was first proposed, however, the original model is still quite relevant even in recent times. We can not therefore discuss Marketing 101 without a mention of this model and its entities that are commonly referred to as the 4Ps.
Product is essentially what the business is all about. You can as well think of it as a service or a good that meets specific consumer needs. Product is at the center of the business and is such an important entity in marketing. The marketing mix model can be implemented in terms of product in diverse ways such as the following:
- Product design which includes the features of the product and its uniqueness
- Branding which entails promoting the product using different ingenious methods
- Product diversity which describes having a wide range of products that consumers can choose from according to their appeal
- Packaging and labelling: Typically, a lot of people still judge a book by its cover despite the popular assertion not to. Therefore, it is important that you package your products or services in a manner that they appeal greatly to the consumers.
- Warranties and guarantees: This is a simple way to assure consumers of the quality of your product or service. It is an effective tool that marketing employs.
Price simply refers to the price that a consumer is willing to pay for a product or service. This is of course very important to every business in terms of revenue generation and business continuity. Deciding the price of a product or service is usually based on different factors such as effort, cost of materials, customer perceived value and others. How then does Marketing leverage on the Price model? Marketing using price involves making some price related decisions such as:
- Allowances in the form of rebates for retailers
- Discounts and promos for customers
- Flexible payment terms such as allowing installments and credit
Place is another important entity in the Marketing model. This refers to creating an enabling environment for your products or services to be readily available and accessible to consumers. Marketing decisions considering place may include:
- Transport and Logistics
- Convenience of access and distribution channels
- Business presence/Location: business location is an important decision because it can affect other decisions like logistics and even market coverage.
- Market coverage
Promotion simply describes business communications that are directed at converting target audience to customers. This typically involves the following:
- Advertisements through different channels like Media, social platforms and others.
- Direct marketing
Marketing 101 would not be complete without mentioning the major goal of marketing which is to drive business growth. Marketing ensures that this is achieved by retaining old customers and gaining new ones.