Social Media Revamps Marketing Basics, The Fifth “P”
Have you observed how so many things have been changing since the advent of the social media? What used to be the norm is now redefined because of the more advanced ways businesses and targeted markets now interact.
The Change in Marketing
The basics of marketing used to be a straightforward theory and anyone who was successful in it knows them, the 4 Ps
Product – this is the very core why there is a need for marketing: to sell a product.
Price – there ought to be strategic pricing of a product.
Placement – this is essential in the success of reaching a product’s target market.
Promotion – is how a business makes its presence felt.
Learning the basics of marketing always began with this and has been effective since the 1960’s until recently. This used to be regarded as something changeable and may be mixed in a controlled manner to deliver business success.
In a report by Purdue University, the Four P’s of Marketing was said to be “a variable that you control”. Today, however, social media has changed the combination or mix of this idea, and it is no longer as simple as it has been re-defined where “variable” has more importance over “control”.
Social Media has added the fifth “P” in the mix, and that’s People. People has played an important role in marketing and drastically shifted the control from the businesses to the consumers.
Let’s take a look at how social media affects the four Ps before we dive into the People as its own
Social Media and Product
Product and its development cycle has been redefined in a way that businesses now take marketing campaigns and place them on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. Marketing analysts and companies are using social media for product development and how it is being marketed and launched.
Feedback and hands-on customer information has direct impact on customer service and product definition. This impact is another form of what we’ve known as “focus” group. Social media is even better than traditional focus group since it’s working with existing customer base and not skewed by the bias or subjective list of questions. This helps companies to get customers involved in product development and enhancement of the product lifecycle.
Social Media and Pricing
In determining how price elasticity can affect customer-buying behavior, it can be tested over social media. How customers would react to the product and its price can be quickly determined at online shopping sites. Many consumer line of products have been introduced via this medium before scaling out. Not only does it help determine the product’s viability in the market, it’s the best place to hear customers’ comparison of competitor’s products.
The buying power now belongs to the customers, and therefore, their behavior, reaction and comments can directly help manufacturers to strategically and quickly formulate when and how to apply price changes, discounts and promotional coupons.
Social Media and Placement
Placement is one of the P’s that has been impacted the most. It plays a vital role in the availability of the product and its distribution to reach the targeted audience. People are now so much into convenience of online shopping 24×7 availability. First, online search changes the way online the products and services get found. Now, social media lets the consumers (people) recommend and share in a more active role taking over as a distribution channel. Placement is no longer just an online store but placed on the social networks allowing consumers to get other consumers opinion of the products and services. With the search and social media online impact, businesses has to place products or services at the top search results PLUS shared by friends.
Interactive marketing has driven placement over popular social sites such as Pinterest, Foursquare or Yelp. Successful marketers strategize product placement with knowledge of the targeted consumers and for better connection and relevancy.
Social media has changed the way products and services reach, get recommended and distributed to their targeted audience. These distribution channels must offer interactivity to include the buyer talk in the mix.
Social Media and Promotion
While not as utilized as the other Ps in Marketing where social media directly impacts, the importance of promotion in branding is essential, and it needs to be restructured. Typically, it incorporates the 4 Ps (product, price and placement) with the message it conveys to its targeted audience. Social media adds a layer of relevant content to connect with its audience.
An effective promotion educates a buyer about the product, its price and its placement. This is where a promotional plan gets tailored according to customers’ behavior, reaction and comments can work well in the success of a product.
Conclusion: The Impact of The Fifth P
Social media has given the microphone to the consumers and amplified their voices quickly across the market. The fifth “P” is People that heavily impacts on how the marketing basics get practiced today. This is how social media expands and reshape the basics of marketing by integrate “people” at the top of mind in strategic and execution plan.
Consider the number of followers social networking sites have – millions for Facebook, millions for Twitter and millions more for other sites – these are the number of real people that represent the real market who are the current and potential buyers. The product and services can grab attention and generated quality leads from these channels or get lost in the new world of overloaded information. Marketing success demands monitoring of the social networks and use the information to formulate the competitive plan, go to market plan, new product launch, business brand, etc.
Social media has taken the traditional concept and raised the marketing bar and demands with the new role of the People.