The New Four P’s of Marketing — Part 4

So far, we’ve looked closely at Proof, Presence and Persuasion to identify why they now make up the first three parts of the New Four P’s of Marketing.

Now let’s look at the final piece of the puzzle. The final P is actually an old-school holdover from the original Four P’s: Price.

  • Price — Of course, Price is always a factor in customer decisions. If there’s no price and something is free, that’s a huge motivator, of course. If something is not free but provides good value, that’s great. Yet even if something is expensive or priced at a premium, customers will jump to get it if the perceived value is high enough or the experience is unique or the brand represents something important to customers — like prestige or value or quality. Why else do people go into five figure debt to buy certain cars, or kids save money to buy brand name jeans and sneakers?

    Because Price is always a factor in customer decisions at some level, it has to remain in the Four P’s. And your first three P’s MUST justify your Price. Why else would you bother going through all the effort and time required to establish Proof, Presence and Persuasion? When customers buy into those three things, it justifies what they have to spend on Price. When they don’t buy into your Proof or you don’t persuade them effectively, you’re going to have a problem getting them to pay your Price.

    And that’s why Price is the fourth P. It’s what you say, do and stand for that set up your Price. That create the demand for what you offer.

    Yet it’s still an aspect to work with also. Customers can buy into what you stand for yet still not be willing or able to pay your Price. So you need to be able to construct different offers and target different customers with different value propositions in order to influence individual buying decisions.

    Price is a timeless, traditional and important member of the Four P’s, yet always has contemporary meaning and relevance. That will never change.

  • Hope you enjoyed the series of posts on the New Four P’s of Marketing. Charge ahead with these new paradigms in mind.

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The New Four P’s of Marketing — Part 3

So, we’ve looked at Proof and Presence and why they’re the lead tandem in the New Four P’s of Marketing.

Now let’s look at what you need once you have Proof and Presence: some Persuasion.

  • Persuasion — What good is Presence if you don’t use it wisely? If you don’t use it to demonstrate your Proof to potential customers? That’s what Persuasion involves: using your Presence effectively to deliver your Proof and persuade customers to, well, become your customers.
    How do you persuade? Well, I’m not suggesting you do anything that’s not genuine, as the word persuasion is sometimes viewed. What I mean is you need to develop market knowledge and a customer-first mentality, and leverage it to be an expert and give customers a reason to trust and do business with you.
    What kind of knowledge? Data and statistics about your market and about your customers. Unique experience or perspective. Customer needs and how to address them. Hell, even just having an opinion is market knowledge and worth something in terms of mental capital with customers. Even a forum or community on your site can be knowledge, even if it doesn’t come from you — if you bring customers together to discuss things and share thoughts, you’re the driving force behind their connection. You’re an expert.
    How do you leverage it? A variety of ways. Start a blog, and use it to craft an authoritative perspective. That’s Persuasion at its best, when your organization’s leaders — and even its front line people — share their expertise with customers via social media. That’s real enagagement. You can start an enewsletter, develop white papers, open Twitter accouunts, build a unique content area of your website. It may seem like irrelevant effort if it’s work that doesn’t focus on your products or company. But it’s not. You have to make a case for customers to trust you. You have to persuade them why you’re relevant, why you’re the best choice. Showing them Proof and having a Presence isn’t enough — you must deliver content and perspective that makes the case.
    Aggregating and sharing this knowledge is the Persuasion that helps you keep customers that your Presence found for you.
  • Next post discusses the final new P: Price.