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Applying the 4 Ps to digital marketing

How do you apply the 4 Ps of marketing to digital marketing?

Next, let’s dive into the details of each P.

Every marketer’s dream is to reach the right customer, at the right time, with the right message. But you’re not the only one trying to reach that customer. There’s a lot of noise and competition in the digital space vying for people’s attention. If you’re not specific about who you’re targeting and clear about the value you’re providing and the action you want them to take, your chances of breaking through that noise are slim.

Graphic shows an overview of the 4Ps with a quick summary. The following are the 4Ps. Product: Tangible or an intangible thing that fulfils a customer’s needs. Price: The charge of your product or service. Place: Choose the place based on your customers and meet them there. Promotion: Optimise your product, price and place to promote your offer. Click to enlarge this image

The 4 Ps of marketing provide a framework for marketers to consider everything they are trying to market and then strategise on the best way to reach their ideal target market. A good way to understand the 4 Ps is by asking questions that help you define your marketing mix.

1. Product

A product is something that fulfils a customer’s needs. It can be tangible (e.g. a car), intangible (e.g. insurance), or a combination of the two. A product is what an organisation sells and is made available to their customer.

Here are some questions that will help you understand and define your product:

  • What are you selling?
  • Is it a physical product or a service?
  • What problem does your product or service solve for the customer?
  • What’s unique about your product or service? How is it differentiated from your competitors?
  • What does it look like, and how will your customers experience it?

2. Price

The price refers to how much you will charge for your product or service. There are a lot of factors to consider when determining the right price. This is the only revenue-generating element in the 4 Ps. (The other three Ps actually add to the cost.) Price is also linked to the organisation’s overall business model – any changes in the price affect the business model outcome as well.

Here are some questions that will help you understand and define your product price:

  • What do you need to charge to make a profit?
  • Will there be pricing tiers?
  • What are competitors charging?
  • What perception do you want your brand to convey? For example, would you rather be known as a premium brand, or do you want to appeal to the masses through cost-effective offerings?
  • Will you offer any promotions to reduce pricing? How does this factor into your overall marketing plan?

3. Place

For this marketing element, think about where your customers are, and meet them there. Think about your target audience and where they go to purchase – it could be online or at a physical location. For example, you probably wouldn’t promote a freelancing tax app on TikTok.

Here are some questions that will help you understand and define where you place your marketing:

  • Where do you market and distribute your product or service?
  • What are the possible distribution channels?
  • How will the end product reach the customer?
  • What modes are being used by your competitors?

4. Promotion

This element comes into play after the other three Ps are taken care of. Once you optimise your product, price, and place, you can start to promote your offer.

As we discussed earlier, marketing and how we conduct business have evolved since the Ps were developed; however, the essential elements remain true. Here are some questions that will help you understand and define how to promote your product:

  • Where, when, and how will you promote your brand?
  • What messaging are you going to use to speak to your target market?
  • How can you best promote your product to them?
  • What channels are they currently using?
  • Is your product seasonal or time-bound?
  • How will you stand out from the competition?
  • How do you measure effectiveness?
  • Are you generating leads?
  • What’s the desired outcome of your promotion strategy?

Next, let’s move to a discussion where you will assess your favourite product’s marketing mix.

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Fundamentals of Digital Marketing

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