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The Marketing Mix

PRODUCT STRATEGIES

Related Links Marketing Mix Price | Marketing Mix Promotion | Marketing Mix Place | Marketing Mix 4Cs

Product Introduction

As we know the Marketing Mix (made up of the four elements product, price, place and promotion), is the foundation for effective marketing. In this article we discuss common product decisions and how to maximise the product element of the marketing mix.

When firms decide to market products there are many decisions to make; each decision can have a long term impact on the success of the product.

Market research at the beginning of the marketing process will help firms make many product decisions including Product Development, Target Market and Pricing.

The diagram below lists the product decisions that manufacturers will need to make about their product

Marketing Mix Product Decisions

Marketing Mix:Product Design

The design of a product can often be the thing that sells it, as design is the easiest thing for consumers to identify. Product design is key in the technology sector, examples include the iPad, the Volkswagen Beetle (1997 - 2011) the Dyson Ball vacuum cleaner and design of the Tesla car. (pictured below).

This is the Dyson DC15 with one large ball that makes manoeuvring the vacuum cleaner easier than if it had the traditional two small wheels at the front. The look (design) has probably helped to sell the vacuum as much as the benefits (of the DC15) have
Von Holzhausen chief designer at Tesla assumes every Tesla has to be beautiful as it will make the product stand out in a competitive market

Product design will be dictated by your target market. For example bright colours may be chosen to attract children, pink and pastel colours for female adults and dark colours such as black, navy, charcoal for male adults. Whereas consumers above a certain age may prefer design features that make a product easier to use rather than a design which is purely about aesthetics.

Marketing Mix:Product Features and Benefits

What features will you add to increase the benefits offered to your target market?

We must remember that Marketing is fundamentally about providing the correct bundle of benefits to the end user, hence the saying

"Marketing is not about providing products or services, it is essentially about providing changing benefits to the changing needs and demands of the customer" (P.Tailor 7/00)

Click this link link for more information Marketing Definition.

Marketing Mix:Product Quality

A quality product is difficult to define as it will mean different things to each consumer. The challenge for all firms is to set their quality level and ensure that it meets the expectations of their target market. In general quality is made up of tangible features (features that can be seen) e.g. performance, appearance, strength and intangible features such as reputation and exclusivity. In all circumstances a product's quality should be consistent with other elements of the marketing mix.

Philip Kotler in his book "Principles of Marketing" devised a very interesting concept of benefit building with a product.

Total Product Concept Diagram

Kotler suggested that a product should be viewed on three levels.

For example a premium based pricing strategy will require a quality product to support the price tag. To learn more about quality click Here

Marketing Mix:Product Branding (including internet branding)

One of the most important decisions a marketing manager can make is branding for their product. The value of brands in today’s environment is phenomenal. Brands have the power of instant sales, they convey a message of confidence, quality and reliability to their target market. A brand is a tool which is used by an organisation to differentiate itself from competitors. Ask yourself what is the value of a pair of Nike trainers without the brand or the logo? How does your perception change? Or an Apple phone, without their logo?

Successful brands are managed by dedicated brand managers tasked with growing and protecting the brand. There are many examples of firms bringing legal action against anybody that they feel is infringing their branding and the intellectual property rights associated with it.

Product branding has to work across all of the firm's trading and promotion platforms including retail shops, telephone, television and of course the internet. Internet product branding should support your brand strategy.

Your product's internet branding should be easy on the eye and make the most of any brand loyalty you have build via other sources .A firm's internet website should sell its products to consumers making the most of the convenience offered by the internet. For more information about the e-marketing mix click here.

Related Links Marketing Mix Price | Marketing Mix Promotion | Marketing Mix Place | Marketing Mix 4Cs

 

Conclusion

As we have seen there are many product decisions that firms need to make, each of these decisions should take into account the other elements of the marketing mix. For example product decisions such as product design and features could push up the price that need to be charged under the price element of the marketing mix.

Click To View LearnMarketing's YouTube Video About The Marketing Mix:Product



Related Links Marketing Mix Price | Marketing Mix Promotion | Marketing Mix Place | Marketing Mix 4Cs

 

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