The Basics

Evidently, I’ve written about the basics before in a different context.

I was thinking about the basics of marketing, the 4 P’s as they’re sometimes called:


I think most people spend a lot of time on promotion. I think lots of people fall back into price when they fail at promotion. I worry that people don’t think much about place. I’m not alone in knowing that we don’t often work hard enough on product, and we try to make up for it in promotion (and customer service).

The Basics Matter

To me, place is a huge one. Distribution matters. I’m about to launch some tests of some sales channels that I’ve never used before and I’m more excited than anything, because I suspect (and my working hypothesis) is that I will be really successful in using this channel. (Remember, it’s an educated guess, so who knows, and no I won’t tell you, because it relates to me, and it’s not very amazing and earth-shattering.)

Place is a basic that we don’t think nearly enough about. Distribution, moving things to weblocal, thinking through the variants on partnerships, all that kind of stuff really matters. I noticed a sub shop had partnered with a bunch of gas station convenience stores up in Maine recently. The shop is good. Their product is good. But the distribution and branding of being paired with these stores means that there are many more units selling more product than their closest competitors.

Product matters, but I’m not smart enough to write about it, except to say that I work hard at stuffing value into the products I create. If we don’t shoot to deliver more value than is expected, we’re already down 1/4 of the basics, such as it were.

Promotion is Great. Do More.

I think promotion is where we spend a lot of our time on marketing, but as time goes on, I’m thinking harder about two of the other three Ps in that old, worn model. Why? Because I think there’s a lot more magic left in that old silk hat.


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