Definitions of marketing and the marketing mix do not have to be overly complicated. The marketing mix definition traditionally includes the 4 P's of marketing which are product, people, place and price. Now, you can find marketing mix definitions which include 8 P's of marketing and beyond.
Although understanding the 4 P's of marketing is important, it's a mistake to over think all this theory. As a result, we see business plans topping over 300 pages and presentations with 50 slides or more. It is very easy for people to lose sight of the most critical component to success. In today's world where simplicity is scarce, less is definitely more-especially when it comes to marketing.
This leads to the simplest definition of marketing and how it can be applied to the mix. Marketing can be defined with two simple words: strategic selling. Strategy involves using some brain power to differentiate and attract attention while selling is the process of actually carrying it out. Why is this definition so important? Because the lifeline and bottom line of every business solely depends how it can strategically sell its products or services.
Since the fundamental core of every business is strategic selling, any variables or decisions in a business should be looked upon with a strategic selling mindset. However, strategic selling does not necessarily involve high pressure sales tactics or harpoon style internet advertising. Marketing as strategic selling topics listening to the needs and desires of customers first and then optimizing variables of the business to fit their criteria.
The marketing mix definition of the 4 P's of marketing is one of the first concepts you learn in any marketing course. In the 1960s, Jerome McCarthy from Harvard (where else?) Grouped main components of marketing into sub headings that all began with the letter P. This clever idea has held strong over the years, however, additions and modification to the 4 P's of marketing and marketing mix have been made to keep it relevant. Where would social media fit in the traditional 4 P's? The internet was not exactly mainstream in the 1960s.
Since the 1960s we have extended versions of the marketing mix definition including the 7 P's of marketing from Philip Kotler and other models with 8, 11, and even more P's. It sees every guru wants to get in on the action and add their P into the marketing mix.
Some of these other P's include Personalization, Participation, Peer-to-Peer, and Predictive Modeling.