The 4P's Classification of the Marketing Mix Revisited
This article, addresses the prime classifications scheme in marketing, the 4P configuration of the marketing mix. The marketing discipline needs a strong classification of the marketing mix, not only to stimulate conceptual integration and purification of the discipline, but also for meaningful measurement of marketing mix efforts and their effects. Also, managers need a clear classification of all instruments at their disposal in order to assess and judge the instruments, objectives, interactions, and restrictions. Last, but not least students need to work with a clear and logical classification. This paper will first outline and comment on the origin and application of the 4P classification, next it will evaluate this taxonomy by using the criteria proposed by Hunt (1991) Taking the observed shortcomings of the 4P classification. The concept of the marketing mix was reportedly introduced by Neil Borden in his presidential address to the AMA in 1953. He got his idea from James Culiton, who described the business executive as somebody who combines different ingredients. The term “marketing mix” therefore referred to the mixture of elements useful in pursuing a certain market response. To facilitate practical application of the concept to concrete operating problems, early writers on the marketing mix sought to itemize the large number of influences on market response that marketers must take into account. McCarthy classification has survived and become the dominant design or received review for his 4P formula, which has discerned four classes, Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. Promotion itself being split into advertising, personal selling, publicity, and sales promotion. This paper continues too assess the 4Ps and other authors definition of the marketing mix, e.g. some writers view these elements as procedures, policies, and processes whereas most authors today depict them as...
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