The new 4P’s of Marketing, Part 1

In an previous post about the validity of traditional marketing mix in the digital economy I proposed a succinct overview of different models. One of these framework, the “New 4P’s” by Mootee, is particularly helpful in today’s economical environment.  The author suggested this new way of looking at the marketing mix in his book “High Intensity Marketing”. I’ll give you the essence of his point of view by sharing with you my interpretation of it. I will split it in two posts to make it more digestible! So let’s see why there is a need for new tools.

In order to understand the reason for a paradigm shift in marketing management, we need to understand where the concept comes from, what its roots are, and what has changed in the economical environment to make it obsolete.

The traditional marketing mix is rooted in the Industrial-Age, has a functional and linear approach in which products are pushed to the consumers through mass medias and where information asymmetry is in favor of the company. This is what Seth Godin calls the TV-Industiral Complex in his book « Purple Cow ».

Today however, markets are dynamic systems with multiple interconnections, where technological advancement has disrupted (and still is disrupting) the economic and corporate world. Welcome to the information age! Where information is becoming abundant, thus shifting the power towards the customer and creating smart markets of interconnected customer networks. In this new context, the only limitation for the market (and for the customer) is its ability to process the huge amount of information available. The scarce resource today is the customer’s attention.This transition puts you and me in the driver seat. It’s the era of customer-driven marketing.

Those changes have created an environment that is beyond corporation’s control, hence making any predictions becomes extremely difficult for them. Mootee puts it right to the point in the book:

“Marketing is more akin to gardening… and for business to grow, marketers must be skilled at seeding, feeding, and weeding customer relationship.” 

This is a wonderful image of how the marketing mindset has to evolve, from a purely scientific approach to a more artful science! Marketers need to realize that they  must give up control. It’s no longer the result of one single activity that drives results but rather the sum of a multitude of small independent but interconnected actions.This requires that marketing and customer knowledge is spread throughout the entire organization. Every interaction along the customer journey becomes an opportunity to build and strengthen the relationship with your customer. For most companies, this will demand a cultural change.

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