The New Face of Marketing and Product Strategy: A Two-Part Series

How Marketing has transcended the “4 Ps” concept in many ways

 

PART ONE: A retrospective look at the Four Ps

Years ago, Philip Kotler, PhD., wrote the seminal book on Marketing that has been used in colleges and business schools across the country. “Marketing Management” was my first introduction to Marketing at Rutgers Business School.

In it Dr. Kotler outlined the major foundational elements of marketing with the “4 Ps.” They consisted of:

  • Product
  • Price
  • Place
  • Promotion

They, of course, still remain the pillars of Marketing in a global business economy. However, I believe that as the world economy changes and new business challenges emerge there are at least three more elements we need to look at:

  • Positioning
  • Process & People
  • Partnering

Let’s take a look at these individually.

PRODUCT:

Millions of products have existed since the dawn of time across every civilization. Today, products can range from highly technical products for business-to-business (B2B) environments to almost anything for consumer (B2C) products. Who could have predicted the age of infomercials sixty or seventy years ago?

To have a successful product, you need to either answer the need of a prospect/customer or create a need that the prospect/customer has not seen but would be interested in.

Remember a true Sales Lead consist of the following:

  • Prospect has a problem
  • Prospect has shared the problem and has the desire to solve it
  • Prospect has a budget to solve the problem
  • You have a product to solve their problem

Some years ago, I read a blog post from Lynne d Johnson then at  www.fastcompany.com that looked at the situation in a different way. She outlined “The 4Cs Concept.”

  1. Customer’s wants and needs
  2. Cost to satisfy the customer
  3. Convenience
  4. Communication

Some interesting context…

“Marketing has changed. We’re in the age of one-to-one marketing, where the customer actually has a role in shaping the messaging for your brand. Social Media – blogs, Twitter, Facebook, wikis, user-generated tools – have given her all she needs to effect whether your products and services do well in the marketplace. Long gone are the 4Ps of marketing, these are the days of the 4Cs, a customer centric approach that includes the customer’s wants and needs; the cost to satisfy the customer; the convenience; and communication.”

Some great points but I still think the 4Ps and the others I intend to point out are very relevant.

PRICE:

In today’s market, it is essential to do some market research on who your target market is before considering price points. Look for analysts’ reports that might be available on pricing. Don’t be afraid to reach out to executives via LinkedIn for discussions on pricing and market conditions. You might be surprised at what you could find out. It gets harder if you have a new product entering a market where there are no competitive price points.

If you are creating a product where there are competitors then you may be able to get competitive pricing from target market executives who already use an existing product. Believe me, I’ve seen it done. Face-to-face meetings with executives can bring a wealth of information.

Lastly, you should be pinging your sales teams – direct and indirect – for competitive pricing if you are creating a product that already has competition in the field.

PLACE:

There are so many ways to promote products today that you will need to determine which one makes sense for your product and company. That would include:

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) through Keywords, Search Engine Marketing (SEM), blogs, banner ads, Google ads, email, LinkedIn ads and targeted campaigns, print materials, YouTube, Twitter, SlideShare, Facebook, Instagram, and Google+.

This also goes back the previous comments on “The 4Cs.” The Internet has turned the world into a global market so be prepared to get up to speed on digital marketing. There are lots of digital marketing individuals, agencies, and groups who will do the nuts and bolts work for you. Remember though, outsourcing carries its’ own burden especially if you are thinking or using an international resource. Are they going to be in the same time zone as you? I once had to work with an agency from California while I was working in New Jersey. Their 9:00 AM was my Noon. Moreover, their 5:00 PM was my 8:00 PM. Think about it especially if you are working on a time sensitive project.

PROMOTION:

Again, there are many ways to promote products in today’s global and digital economy. Many could be a good thing or a risky thing if you have not fully thought out your promotion strategy. That would include online and offline. One of the top ways to promote a product is face-to-face at trade shows but it is very costly. That also depends on the product, market, and end-user customer. I have done many trade shows for a wide variety of products in both the B2B and B2C sectors. So, I saw the value of those face-to-face interactions.

Now, using the Internet there are opportunities for remote, virtual events where your team can participate. Presentations can be made to an online audience that can attract leads and interaction for your sales teams.

Regarding the previously mentioned online and offline options [see Place section], you will have to know what works best and what potential costs you will incur. One of the best sources for a breakdown of methods and costs comes from www.MarketingProfs.com Each year they publish their annual “B2B Content Marketing Report.” The report details Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends in North America from over 1,000 executive respondents. So, it’s a great resource to find out the best tools and returns on effort.

Here are some interesting points on promoting your products from Mike Moran, a Digital and Social Media Consultant [https://MikeMoran.com]. Mike teaches both the Mini-MBA in Digital Marketing and Mini-MBA in Social Media Marketing at Rutgers University School of Business. I attended the inaugural class for the Mini-MBA in Digital Marketing in July 2010. I then introduced Mike Moran to the Rutgers programs.

Here is something that I believe is directly related to promotion that came from Mike Moran.

“The Three Rs Concept”

  1. Real:
    1. Are you thinking about a new way to talk about your business?
    2. Would you show customer reviews on your website?
    3. Would you show competitive pricing?
  2. Relevant:
    1. Personalize your offers
    2. Show demos on YouTube.com
  3. Responsive:
    1. Does your customer service reach out to customers?
    2. How far does your customer service reach out?
    3. Are you helping customers even when they don’t expect it? (Pro-Active)

 

PART ONE of a Two-Part Series. Look for Part Two on Wednesday, October 11, 2017. 

Part TWO: The New “P’s” for a Global Economy 

 

Dominic J. Frúges

Dominic J. Frúges

Dominic J. Frúges is an experienced Product Marketer and Strategist across B2B, B2C, High Tech, and Services. He has worked on twelve product launches from inception to completion in both B2B and B2C industries. He also holds Scrum Product Owner Certified Credential from the Scrum Alliance. He has an MBA – Rutgers University, Mini-MBA in Digital Marketing – Rutgers University, and CloudMASTER® certification from NJIT University.

domfruges@gmail.com

Cell & Primary: 732-684-4029

Twitter: @DomFruges

www.LinkedIn.com/in/dfruges

 

30-60-90 Day Private Industry Job Stimulus Plan

Given the less than enthusiastic job numbers that were released last week I decided to re-publish an old blog that I had written.

Some time ago I wrote this plan – I actually had a letter dated November 30, 2009 to President Obama.  At that time I also tried to gather some support by writing to various senators, congress people, and media representatives.  Unfortunately, it received little notice.  However, among the friends who read it I did get some interest and support.  I thought it might be a good time to restate the “30-60-90 Day Private Industry Job Stimulus Plan.”

I have also thought about this year being an election year.  It would be great if Congress would approve this plan now but the reality is that the election process will close down government until after the January 20th inauguration.

Here are some key points to remember when considering this plan:

  • Private Industry: this is a plan for private industry job creation – not government jobs.
  • Private Industry Jobs: this plan lets private industry determine what jobs and titles they need without interference from the Federal Government.
  • Job Creation Rewards: There are pay outs to the private industry owners and companies who create jobs under this plan.  However, there is no pay out before the one year point after the job has been created.   In essence the Federal Government collects taxes from newly hired employees for one full year.  It then pays out the reward to the company that hired the employees.  Hopefully, a good portion of the “reward” pay-out will come from the taxes generated from the newly hired employee.  Congress would have to set aside some money as a back-up provision and could easily do some math calculations to stop the program at perhaps $250,000,000 in pay out monies.  That number could be lower or higher but the three month length of the program helps to limit exposure and keep costs within a reasonable framework.   It also allows the program to be reevaluated after a three month trial.

Here is how the plan would work.

I. Simple plan based on salary– only three categories of jobs with a corresponding job title:

– $25,000 to 50,000

– $51,000 to 75,000

– $76,000 to 125,000

      II.  Three time frames:  30, 60, 90 days to create a job.

III.   ALL NEW JOBS MUST BE CREATED IN THE USA – no entitlement to offshore jobs; no H-1B Visa candidates; US Citizens only.

Example:

  1. Salary: $76,000 to $125,000

We start the program on February 1, 2013. Create a job from $76,000 to 125,000.

Mr. or Ms. Employer — you create a job with a salary of $76 – 125K and the position/job (not the same employee) MUST remain active for one year thereafter.

If you created the job in the period listed below you will get a check back from the US Government — not a tax credit — a check! The check will be received after the first year in the program.

  1. Salary: $76,000 to $125,000

February 1 – February 28: (first 28 days) $25,000 return check

March 1 – March 31: (it took you 60 days to create the job) $15,000 return check

April 1 – April 30: (it took you 90 days to create the job) $7,500 return check

  1. Salary: $51,000 to $75,000

February 1 – February 28: $10,000 return check

March 1 – March 31: $5,000 return check

April 1 – April 30: $2,500 return check

  1. Salary: $25,000 to $50,000

February 1 – February 28: $5,000 return check

March 1 – March 31: $2,500 return check

April 1 – April 30: $1,000 return check

The program would:

— Create incentives for private industry to create jobs that are sitting on paper in file cabinets or on laptops.

— Create incentives to do it QUICKLY!!!

— Create a one year financial build up of paid taxes from employees to the Federal Government that could help pay for the program.

— Provide stiff personal and company financial penalties for those employers who cheat on the system.  Perhaps, the fines would be $50,000 for the company and a $5,000 personal fine for the specific employer.

— Maintain all appropriate Federal and state laws regarding employment obligations and protections for both employers and employees.

— Use Offer Letters, fingerprints, and Driver’s Licenses as proof of employment. After one year the employer sends a copy of paperwork to the US Department of Commerce who verifies paperwork and payroll ID tax.

— If the employee is fired for cause then the company has 30 days to replace the employee and still be eligible for the program. Federal payout to employer would extend an extra 30 days to the 13th calendar month.  There would be a limit of three employee changes per calendar year in the program; therefore the maximum payout period for any employer could extend to 18 calendar months (3 months to look for the employee and then a month’s calendar extension for payout). The bottom line for employers is that they are “not stuck” with a specific employee.

— Employers could NOT reduce their total employee staff by more than 10% during the calendar period that they participate in the program.  Additionally, the employer can NOT “hire and fire” within the specific department where the new employee will work.  That would prevent “salary substitution”, i.e., hire a $50,000 employee but fire a $75,000 employee in the same department.

— The 30-60-90 Day Private Industry Job Stimulus Plan would be implemented on a trial basis for three (3) months with a maximum budget of $250,000,000 for employer payouts. So, as envisioned, the initial commitment by the Federal Government would be $250,000,000.

— Congress would appropriate the funds for administrative costs and review the program after its initial trial period.

People get real jobs at all salary levels up to $125,000. This would be a great boost for the lower and middle classes as well as small to mid-size employers.  However, I would also strongly urge significant Federal budget cuts accompany this program’s implementation.

NOTE: If you comment off of another networking group or blog where you saw this, please copy your comment here in the comments section to keep the conversation going.

Regards – Dom

Dominic J. Fruges

Cell: 732-684-4029

@DomFruges

DomFruges@gmail.com

http://ImpalBizBuzz.wordpress.com