While technology has undoubtedly revolutionised the way in which a brand can promote itself, it would be wrong to assume that modern techniques can’t be applied to tried-and-tested models.
The speed at which digital technology moves puts even more emphasis on the need for a brand to be constantly aware of how its target audience behaves. The 7 Ps marketing model allows for the continuous re-evaluation of a strategy to ensure a business is consistently able to satisfy the needs of its customers.
What are the 7 Ps?
The 7 Ps are a collection of factors detailing all points of contact between a business and its customers; the idea of which is to ensure the core elements of a marketing plan are covered before anything is put into place. The model is an expansion on the basic 4 Ps idea, which includes Product, Price, Place and Promotion. The additional three are People, Process and Physical Presence.
Determining what the consumer wants
Before any success can be had by a business, a product or service must be developed. With this product, it’s important to understand which aspects can influence the response of consumers. This comes down to things like desirability, practicality and quality. Digital technology has made it much easier for businesses to determine what it is that consumers are looking for and what they’re willing to pay for it.
Social media, for example, not only allows consumers to connect with the brands, it allows the brand to monitor trends and behaviour patterns amongst its consumers; helping it to further understand their needs and desires. Sites like Facebook and Twitter have brought brands and their customers closer together than they have ever been before; a relationship that provides significant benefits for both parties.
With geographical location also covered by sites like Facebook and Google+, ‘check-ins’ and location tags allow businesses to understand where their target audience is. This also works two ways, with consumers finding it easier to locate businesses in their area using GPS.
How analytics has revolutionised marketing
The amount of data businesses can now use to keep up with consumers is vast. Social media users are now in the position to ‘like’, ‘share’ and ‘re-tweet’ their favourite brands as they wish. This interaction data, however, has to be monitored if it is to be of any use. While in the past, business owners would rely on feedback given by customers to determine whether marketing efforts had been successful or not, firms can now apply analytics to the enormous collections of data they gather to describe, forecast and, ultimately, improve business performance.
Spreading the word
Raising positive awareness is rarely achieved more effectively than with authentic word-of-mouth recommendation. Social networking has allowed the world to come together, forming groups which reflect both interests and real-world relationships. This means that if someone thinks highly of a brand, they are more likely to share this information with the people around them. This, however, also makes it easier for negative feedback to spread.
The digital age has brought with it a whole new world of marketing. Never before has such a sizeable audience been so reachable and so ready to pass judgement on everything from businesses to celebrities. However, while the techniques may have evolved, the ways in which they are applied still, on the whole, remain the same.