In a global market place that is becoming more and more competitive as we speak companies have to focus more than ever on creating brand recognition and vying for a place in the minds, hearts and wallets of the consumer. The foundation of this for many companies is the classic marketing mix. The marketing mix can be summed up as product, place, price and promotion. The four elements are mixed together in a way that can spell disaster or success for a company’s bottom-line and long-term success. This paper will discuss the four elements of the marketing mix, their impact on Nike and the marketing research approach.
The term “marketing mix” was first coined by Neil Borden in his 1953 address to the American Marketing Association. The idea of a marketing mix was not a new idea to the industry though. During the previous decade James Culliton had talked about the idea of a marketing executive acting almost as a chef throwing different ingredients into the mix. Depending on the ingredient and the amount, one could expect different outcomes. These ideas were welcomed by the industry and later refined by McCarthy during the 1960’s into what we know today as the Four P’s. The Four P’s while criticized by some, have become industry standard and are used widely today.
The Four P’s
The Four P’s, product, price, place and promotion that make up the marketing mix are important both independently, as well as a unified whole. No one is more important than the other as they act in unison to reach the customer. When a company is working to develop a marketing strategy it is important that these elements be mixed in a way to achieve the desired outcome. The position of each of these elements will help a company to make its product unique, leading to increased demand. In times of decreased demand it is important for an organization to revisit their position. Fluctuations in the market may be cause for a shift in the positioning of a company’s Four P’s as well.
The product element of the Four P’s is used to develop the right product for a particular market. The product can either be a physical product or a service offered. Some companies will even use a hybrid of the two. This can be seen with companies that offer a product as well an accompanying service. The product element of the marketing mix would also be used to work on aspects of the product such as branding and packaging. While the product element is just one part of the Four P’s it plays a very important role.
The place aspect of the marketing mix is related to getting the product to the consumer. A product can be distributed in a number of ways. Some products are shipped directly from the manufacturer to the consumer. Others may use an extensive distribution channel to move their goods or service. The place element would also analyze whether it would be more appropriate to sell a product online or in a brick and mortar location. With the explosion of the internet many companies are abandoning the traditional store front for an online business. These are all decision that fall under the place element of the marketing mix.
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