You can change the offer, alter the creative, or adjust the price, but the reality of the new world is that, to make these facets of the four P’s (product, price, place, promotion) work, you also need an effective marketing mix.
There was a time when we had the luxury of ongoing and simple experimentation with mix; that’s no longer available for us as technology marketers. Our audiences are increasingly orchestrating their own incredibly complex behaviors — ones that we don’t control. They’re using, on average, seven content sources (for example, direct email, search, online forums, white papers, direct sales conversations, and sponsored seminars) and contemplating five or more types of content types (ROI engines, customer examples, cloud integration, options/benefits, and industry examples) across the buying process. If you think that’s challenging enough for marketers, we are now seeing increased blending between formats (online to search, print to direct) in a more mature, mixed manner than ever before. Add to this the selective integration of different content needs in specific online destinations, and we see a marketing mix ecosystem that is neither linear nor homogeneous. It feels progressively like a DNA strand, twisted in a helix and connected at varying points and components.
To succeed in your other P’s, you need to know how to handle the key dynamics of the marketing mix before you can adjust the other levers, like marketing a price or product change. For example, if you adjust price but don’t get your marketing mix right (from targeting to content to messaging or integrated media), you will never know if price adjustments really worked. In truth, you cannot avoid the marketing mix dilemma if you want to deliver outcomes from the other big P’s.