Small business owners likely don’t have a full-blown advertising team dreaming up their next marketing campaign –– they probably do everything on their own. And many entrepreneurs aren’t specialized marketers. They may be great app developers, coaches, graphic designers, or copywriters, but not ace advertisers.
But what’s a business without marketing? That’s where the seven Ps of marketing help.
This framework guides businesses toward successful campaigns that clearly show potential clients why a company’s product or service is a value-add. So if you’re a solopreneur figuring out marketing on your own, here’s all you need to know about the seven Ps of marketing, marketing mix, and how these Ps can help your business.
But first, what is a marketing mix?
Marketing mix describes a brand’s actions and strategies to promote its products or services. Teams in the past used a mix of marketing tools such as print or radio ads. But for many 21st-century operations, plans include digital marketing strategies like social media promotions and email campaigns.
While (typically) there are seven Ps of marketing, some people refer to the components of the marketing mix as the four Ps: product, price, place, and promotion. These four aspects inform a campaign strategy, especially for product marketing mixes. However, marketing mixes must also consider other factors, such as the people who deliver the service and the process by which they do so. And all of these fit well into the seven Ps marketing model.
What are the 7 Ps of marketing?
The seven Ps of marketing, an expansion of the original four, take a comprehensive look at a product’s customer-facing aspects. The seven Ps provide a framework to marketers, helping them ensure they consider both the ad campaign and what it represents. Here’s what each P stands for:
- Product: The product is the good or service a company offers. Marketers must know the product inside and out, including its features, quality, design, customization options, and how it stands out from the competition. For example, a coaching practice’s product could be a six-month wellness module, with features like helping clients eat healthier meals, control bad habits, and introduce more physical movement. Testimonials can vouch for the program's quality, and clients can customize the program by focusing on personal goals. And the coach’s differentiator could be that they’re the only one of their kind in the geographic area.
- Price: The price reflects how much a service costs. Before committing to numbers, marketers launching a new product must consider several factors, such as the competition’s similar goods or services’ cost and their promotional activities, which could affect sales and profits.
- Promotion: Promotion generally refers to “marketing” –– the channels and methods by which a business advertises its product to the world. Promotional channels include billboards, websites, social media ads, SEO content marketing (blogs, etc.), email marketing campaigns, and testimonials — any channel where a company pitches a good or service and gains brand awareness.
- Place: Place refers to the site of a sale or service delivery. In the coaching practice example, the place would be the coach’s office or virtual meeting space. Place is an essential pre-advertising consideration as it determines how accessible a product is to a target audience. A coach with an international target market must offer sessions online, and a watercolor paint brand should offer its products in art supply stores.
- People: There are always people behind a product, especially in service-based businesses. Marketers should consider the role and presence of any person who has direct contact with end users. Coaches, for example, market their services and themselves. As we’ve seen with prominent names in the industry, like Tony Robbins, a coach with a unique personality becomes integral to their product.
- Process: Processes describe the route of getting products and services to clients. For a product-based company, processes may include the operational procedures involved in packing, shipping, and delivering a product. For a service-based company, however, processes cover onboarding new clients, scheduling, and invoicing. If customers find accessing your services difficult, you may need to correct procedures before turning marketing leads into sales.
- Physical evidence: Clients want to know a product or service exists and that a lot of thought and attention goes into creating it before they buy. Physical evidence demonstrates a product’s existence and quality through attractive packaging, a website or e-commerce store, and the item's presence in physical stores.
Why use the 7 Ps?
Because small business owners wear so many hats, they’re deeply familiar with all aspects of their products or services. But is that enough? Not really. You must consider all the seven Ps to get those sales up and running. Here are some benefits of leveraging the seven Ps:
- Stand out from the competition: Analyze your marketing strategy with the seven Ps in mind and an eye for setting your product or service apart. You focus heavily on meeting customers’ needs and developing a better offering, which is a worthy pursuit. But to attract new leads, you must know and demonstrate your unique selling point (USP) to draw attention.
- Boost profitability: The seven Ps framework pushes you to closely examine operations, costing, and product quality. In doing so, you may find ways to streamline clunky, expensive procedures, create a more attractive product that sells better, or optimize cost to drive interest from prospects.
- Identify new opportunities: Anytime you analyze your product, operations, and deliveries, you encourage the proverbial lightbulb to go off. When considering the seven Ps, you may develop a new promotional angle, discover your pricing strategy is off, or get inspired to revamp your packaging, improving customer experience.
Asking questions like “What are the seven Ps?” gives way to further questions. And if you have any lingering queries, check out the following frequently asked questions.
What are the types of marketing mixes?
Marketing mixes include product or service, product lifecycle, marketing program, channel, and global or international marketing mixes.
Are there 9 Ps of marketing?
To regularly improve the original Ps of marketing, some marketing experts have added a few more to the framework. You may see “passion,” “planning,” “partners,” and “presentation” on longer Ps lists.
What are the 7 Cs in marketing?
The seven Cs is a framework similar to the seven Ps and may include circumstances, cost, channel, consumer, commodity, communication, and coordination, depending on the source. As almost parallel models, C categories often correlate to P categories, i.e., cost and price or coordination and process.
Track marketing leads with Practice
Leverage the seven Ps of marketing to up your game and crush the competition. And as your marketing plan takes off and your business grows, you’ll need a secure place, such as a customer relationship management (CRM) tool, to store client information, send messages and documents, and receive payment for your services.
Practice’s Client Management Software, designed with small business owners and coaches in mind, can do all this and more. Keep your client data safe, improve your customer relationships by facilitating conversations on the messaging platform, and gain access to templates that streamline your business processes –– all in one place. Try it today.