When I was a student in university I was expected to know the four Marketing policies by heart. When I took an exam, there were always questions on the Marketing mix and its components. Product, Price, Place (or also Placement) and Promotion were like the Marketing “alphabet” that was expanded to 7Ps (People, Process and Physical Evidence) for services. But now I feel old fashioned, and even like a dinosaur, with my almost archaic knowledge in Marketing in this non-static world. The reason for that is that I came across a very interesting article on the dynamic development of the Marketing sphere that interpreted the new aspects and new Ps created by the phenomenon called the Internet.
The traditional 1960 Marketing Mix of Edmund Jerome McCarthy has experienced transformations and developments but not that drastic ones. But why am I murmuring? Everything changes and we change especially in our hi-tech century. It’s logical that even the Marketing industry has been impacted. And which are the new Ps (mainly) in favour of B2B markets? They are simply S.A.V.E..
S. stands for Solution which is the “old” Product policy, actually. The focus is on the solution instead of the product. In the past companies produced high-quality products with a nice design packed in lovely packages and boxes. Nowadays firms emphasize on solutions that meet customers’ needs and the reality as a whole. The three major questions that should be asked and should get their answers are as follows: What are customers’ needs or problems? How can they be met or resolved? What are the most appropriate solutions to them? If producers manage to find them out and offer their customers these solutions exactly, they will be the winner.
A. is for Access that is the old-fashioned Place (or Placement). Some years ago businesses fought to distribute their products in the best possible markets. But today they do their best to ensure their clients easy access to their goods and get feedback from them. Distribution isn’t so effective as in the past since we live in a world of globalization in which the Internet reigns and goods could be purchased just in a few clicks as well as from the nearby supermarket or shopping centre.
V. expresses customers’ desire to get a Value and substitutes the “stale” Price. Once upon a time end-users or partner companies, for example, measured a product by its price. When they declared that a certain item was too expensive, producers and suppliers immediately adjusted it to their needs and their purchasing power and decreased the price. While nowadays a product is estimated by its value and even if the price is higher a customer could make a compromise and buy it just because of the value itself.
E. is the short for Education and comes into the place of Promotion. In the past firms struggled to promote their products through the different communications channels, advertisements, PR and during exhibitions and other various events. As for today, they firstly collect data and information on their customers through websites, blogs and social media, and secondly, they educate them. This is a two-way process. On the one-hand it helps companies build trust in their clients, and on the other hand, consumers are updated (or better said – educated) on novelties, new models, SW & HW upgrades, etc..