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19 February 2009


I posted a link to this on another site and someone thought I was "being ridiculous".

In some ways this blog about the marketing mix and the 4 Ps was intended as a spoof.

You could say I was taking the Ps out of marketing. (Sorry is that just too corny?)

I show it in the marketing mix blog.

First there are 4 Ps in the marketing mix.

Then someone thinks there should be another added so it becomes the "new, improved 5 Ps of marketing mix".

Next someone adds on another couple to create a marketing mix of the 7Ps.

Then I read someone effectively say, there are not the important 4Ps of marketing, these are the ones you want.

But it is funny how many words beginning with P are closely associated with marketing.

If I had to narrow it down to a more sensible number, I would focus attention on:

P for Profit - If you don't make a profit (over the long term) then it is bad marketing.

P for Perception - to remind us that it is not what we know to be true or false that matters but what the prospective customer perceives.

P for Positioning - so many of the marketing mistakes I see can be traced back to the fact that there is nothing special about the business. It's no different from the ten nearest competitors.

I'd better stop.

I am in danger of writing out the full list of 27 Ps again.

Marketing lies at the centre of everything you do in your business and that's why you need to understand it.

The traditional marketing mix of price, product, place and promotion in my view under-emphasise the importance of effective marketing.

I am very pleased with how much traffic this blog on the Marketing mix, 4Ps of marketing, 7Ps of marketing, 11 Ps of marketing etc.

But it would be nice to see some comments coming through.

What do you think about the original 4 Ps Marketing Mix concept?

Do the 4Ps say everything you need to say about marketing or are the add-ons - for example the 7 Ps for service marketing right?

Can you over do it?

My 27 Ps of marketing was written partly out of intrigue.

Every time I found myself in some kind of philosophical discussion about marketing, I found myself using another P word to describe an important aspect.

Whether you are a marketing practitioner or marketing student, your views on the marketing mix are welcome and your contribution may be the one that makes the difference to one of my readers.

Forget all about the 7ps of marketing, the 11Ps or marketing, the 15Ps of marketing and please no, not the 27 Ps of marketing.

Just stick with the traditional four


Any more and you just overcomplicate what was originally a simple, easy to remember idea.

If you can't get your marketing right with the traditional 4Ps then you don't stand any hope of using more.


Thanks for your comment and entering into a debate on the marketing mix.

I agree that the original 4Ps is certainly simple and easy to remember but I don't think it is particular inspiring or insightful.

While the marketing mix and 4Ps is certainly one of the best known marketing concepts I have my doubts over whether it has created enough benefits.

When I was taking my MBA, there was a backlash against the 4Ps concept for simplifying marketing too much.

There was a tendency to box filling.

Writing a bit about product, price, place and promotion. Then a quick check that there was consistency and voila, there is your marketing strategy.

Certainly I don't like the fact that Profit is excluded although it would certainly make sense from some of the marketing campaigns I've seen which are about winning advertising awards and not selling more products or increasing the willingness to pay a premium price.

As I said earlier, I did write this as a tongue in cheek riposte to various articles I was reading that identified others Ps.

is there an alternative to the marketing mix?

Well my MBA course proposed

1 - Understanding customer value
2 - Creating customer value
3 - Communicating customer value
4 - Delivering customer value

and I do like this approach for its emphasis on the customer when the 4Ps can be very inward facing.

Let me join the debate and offer one more 'P'. I wrote a post recently on Personality being the 5th P in marketing. http://9inchmarketing.com/2009/05/14/personality-the-fifth-p-in-marketing/
I think the importance of establishing an engaging presence behind a brand is vital.
Be interested to hear your thoughts.

Stan thanks for your comment.

Good one.

I am very happy to agree the Personality is another % to be a contender in the marketing mix.

There are some marketers who just grab you with their personality and involve you.

In the internet marketing world, the cool dude, Frank Kern springs to mind.

Also Gary Vaynerchuk of http://tv.winelibrary.com/ brings such great enthusiasm to wine that it is difficult not to want to buy.

Your idea of personality as another P of marketing caused me to word associate to personality as a famous star and celebrity.

Regigging that into the marketing mix Ps of marketing, I guess that will have to become Personal fame.

While that is an outcome of marketing by the celebrity, it can be harnessed by a business through endorsements, associations and PR.

4 Ps of The Traditional Marketing Mix


Interesting search found this blog - how will the marketing mix change in the 21st century?

It got me thinking and I started with the 4Ms of Marketing.

Don't know what the 4Ms are?


I think mindset is going to become increasingly important as global competition and free access to information on the Internet continues to develop.

There needs to be intentional focus on how marketing translates into profit but also an increase in two way communication as social media increases to have greater impact.

The market itself will remain critical - especially how you define the market and how you can target your ideal customers. Globalisation means that small focused niches are much more viable and remember the impact of the Long Tail.

Message will mainly stay the same. People's motivations and desires haven't changed for hundreds of years. Work from the copywriting greats at the start of the 20th century remains just as valid in the 21st century.

Media is where we will see the biggest change in the 21st century and in potentially unimaginable ways.

Who could have imagined the Internet 40 years ago?

Media is fragmenting rapidly, newspapers are going online, TVs have many more channels and the ability to screen out adverts when recording.

So what does that impact on the marketing mix as typified by the 4Ps.

Prices will be driven down for anything that is not differentiated and well positioned for specialised use.

Products will become more specialised unless production allows major cost savings from standardisation.

Place will become more fragmented as distribution channels weaken and dissolve.

Promotion will become more intense. The number of marketing messages will only go one way and more extreme methods will be needed to attract a potential buyer and move him or her into action.

What do you think?

How will the marketing mix (the 4Ps, the 7Ps or whatever you like) change as we go deeper into the 21st century?

Instead of "Push/Pull" how about "Prospecting"? Sellers prospect for buyers and buyers prospect for products or services that meet their needs.

It seems that the Service Marketing Mix has increased from the 7 Ps to the 8 Ps of marketing according to Lovelock, C. and Wirtz, J. 2007. Services Marketing: People, Technology, Strategy. 6th Edition

Product elements
Place and Time
Price and Other User Outlay
Promotion and Education
Physical Environment
Productivity and Quality

The last one is about improving internal efficiency and external effectiveness so you create differentiation

Having read the Innovative P's of marketing mix I think there should only be 4 Ps rest are application or extension of the same. the relevance 3 additional P's holds true to Services Marketing still.

Arvind Kumar Jain
(Faculty Marketing ICFAI-INC Allahabad)

oh my god! im getting so confused seeing all this p's!its like all the words starting with p from the dictionary have been picked up!
im wondering what are the most important p's!

This is a pretty comprehensive information. Thank you! If you build it, they will come is something that rarely happens. No matter how many Ps, it's a mix of usefulness of the product and the right strategy to promote.

we know that they are 32ps in marketing not 27

CJ Hayden has come up with another 5 Ps of marketing for professionals, consultants and coaches

Personal Credibility
Push plus Pull

Moe info on the 5Ps of marketing at


The process component is extremely important in terms of increasing sales. Here's one simple example- if at the time of the sale, you suggest a customer buy an add on product or service and only 10% of those customers do it, you can garner added sales without spending additional money.

Some argue that the 4Ps of marketing and derivatives of it are obsolete. Instead you need to look to the 4Cs of marketing.

The four C's of marketing have replaced the four P's - consumer, cost, convenience and communication.

It is no longer about the Product... but instead about CONSUMER needs and wants.
It is no longer about the Price... but the COST to satisfy consumers
It is no longer about the Place...but about the CONVENIENCE to buy
I is no longer about Promotion... but about COMMUNICATION

Though the world is considered new, but business strategies still need to combine new strategies with old ones. A mix of them make a successful business strategy. Everything today doesn’t need to be new, a combination of good traditional ones are still effective. I learned a lot from this post. Thanks!

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