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    How many Ps in Marketing?

    By John Ross

    Middle East MarketingFor those who did Marketing 101 the answer to the above question is a simple 4: Product, Price, Place and Promotion.  For those who have read more widely it might be 6, the 4 above plus People and Process, some might even include a 7th P which is Physical evidence, however I contest that there is only 3 Ps in Marketing: Perception, Possible and Pleasure.

    According to the Oxford English Dictionary, Perception is “the process of becoming aware or conscious of a thing or things in general; the state of being aware; consciousness; understanding.”  However to perceive something is not necessarily to understand something, but rather to hold that perception as a truth.  If we put that into marketing terms it is that which makes customers buy a brand or product.

    The second P is Possible defined by the same noble tome as “capable of existing, happening, being done”, and the Chartered Institute of Marketing defines Marketing as “The management process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements, profitably”  is this not the art of the Possible?

    It is on this premise that I postulate that these are the first 2Ps in Marketing.  If it is Possible that an organisation can develop a product or service, communicate with it’s target audience in such a way that they believe that there is a need for this product or service then they Perceive it to be of benefit and will buy it.  The more difficult part is now maintaining or exceeding that perception in order that the experience is an enjoyable one and repeat purchase or recommendation occurs; I call this Pleasure.

    Again referring to the Oxford English Dictionary Pleasure is “feeling of satisfaction or joy, source of gratification” or if you like Customer Satisfaction, and, as Peter Drucker once said, “The measurement of a successful organisation is an external one; it is called satisfied customers”

    Therefore Marketing is delivering Perceived Pleasure whenever Possible to those who could Possibly Perceive the Pleasure of an organisations product or service.

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