As The 2 Guyz On Marketing, we believe many people think that Marketing = Promotion and Promotion equals Marketing. Exclusively. But to The 2 Guyz On Marketing, “Place,” distribution and channels of distribution, are vitally important elements under the nine P’s of Marketing.
Place is where the company’s activities are, where they make the product available, using distribution and trade channels, roles, coverage, assortments, locations, inventory and transportation characteristics and alternatives.
Can your customers find your product? Is it someplace easy? Convenient? Nearby? Online?
How can customers, clients or users see or know the difference between your product or service and your competition, if they can’t find it? Have you looked at the “true” cost of free shipping in e-commerce?
Do the potential customers (Potential customers are “People” in the 9P’s equation) know about or are they aware of your product or service? Why is your product or service better at a given location? Or is it a “lesser brand” if it’s not there? (For example, many fast food restaurants have contracts with soft drink companies, and limit or eliminate competitive brands.)
The 9 P’s/9P’s of Marketing can be used successfully by product companies, service firms, for profits entities and nonprofits “selling” directly or indirectly to consumers (B2C), to marketing intermediaries (such as industrial, consumer, retail, wholesale and professional channels of distribution), and to other businesses (B2B).
We teach excellent Marketing is the offering the right Product to the right People, at the right Price, with the right Partners and Presentation, at the right time, at the right PLACE.
Marketing managers consider, develop and review store and non-store, e-commerce and “brick and mortar” factors, considerations, objectives, strategies and tactics, including “Partners.”
Look at some of the factors in developing an effective and efficient distribution plan, objectives, strategies, and tactics, all the way through execution.
- Channels of distribution.
- Shipping options
- Considerations in and for an effective distribution network and partners.
- Channel partners. Identify and specify the roles of distribution partners and members, within the integrated strategic distribution strategies.
- Develop geographic strategies.
- Develop and review financial conditions of partners, perishability, installation, maintenance and use of technology. Regarding technology or technographical characteristics. Understand your potential partner. Remember, in the back of your mind, that the reason technology is phenomenal is because it displaces years, or centuries, of previous technology. Partners and your consumers may or may not have the skills. Think employees here too. The reason technology skills are transitory is because they will almost certainly be displaced, too.
A typical supply chain may consist of four links in the chain:
- Producer > Factory > Manufacturer >
- Distributor > Wholesaler > Retailer >
- Consumer (supplying the ultimate users)
Here are “Place” examples from the 2 Guyz on Marketing.
- Delivery-company executives have found that discounts and promotional offers attract users and encourage them to order more frequently, but those promotional offers lead customers to hop from one service to another. They are looking for better or best offers, with little loyalty. Research has found that younger users lack loyalty or displaying reliability in next or repeat purchases. They want and look for a better deal or offer.
- From Phil Knight of Nike: “Supply and demand is always the root problem of business. It’s hard enough to invent, manufacture and market a product, but then there are the logistics, the mechanics, the hydraulics of getting it to the people who want it, when they want it—that is how companies die…”
- It was reported that Subway was selling 80% of its new franchise locations to existing franchisees. More than half of the locations are non-traditional including schools, zoos, military bases, plus hospitals. Where there are “captive audiences,” or under “People.” (Bloomberg.com and subway.com)
- This example would fall under both Place and Promotion: There are 210 markets in the U.S. TV advertising marketplace. (Nielsen)
Place is more than just distribution. The smart marketer should explore all the different aspects of place: where is the brand made, where is it distributed, where is the competition, where is the competition missing from, where are the customers, where do they live/shop/buy…all critical questions related to Place.
For more Marketing insights, ideas, concepts and Marketing solutions: Go to Londremarketing.com and look under “Articles and Resources” and the 9P’s/Nine P’s . Created by Larry Steven Londre. Copyright 2007.