Have you been in marketing for awhile? Were you trained in marketing? If so, chances are that you’ve been wondering what happened to the “traditional” marketing rules (if there ever was such a thing) – and what replaced them.
There is no question that tectonic shifts have redefined the fundamentals of marketing as we knew it – leaving many marketers feeling like they are in the midst of crossing the equivalent of “Marketing Death Valley.”
At the very least – take a look at one of the fundamental concepts of marketing – the 4P’s of the marketing mix (Product, Price, Place, and Promotion). In the early 90’s Prof Robert F. Lauterborn suggested that the 4 P’s should be replaced with the 4C’s (Consumer needs, consumer Cost, Convenience to buy, and Communications). Either way, do you believe that those are still useful as fundamental concepts for defining the marketing mix? How much can you tweak “price” in your marketing mix if some of your competitors came out with free products? What can you do about “place,” now that it has become mostly ubiquitous and almost free? And how much should you spend on “promotion,” when the new marketing scarcity is “customer attention” instead of shelf space, and where “findability” is the new name of the game? Sure, in some spaces you can still gain some differentiation by changing some aspects of the “product” mix – but most of those are very short-lived differentiations.
In a series of posts during the next couple of months we will be looking at what happened to the traditional rules of marketing – and try to understand what the new fundamentals are. Feel free to join this conversation and help us to make this series of posts worthwhile.