The traditional marketing mix was formulated by maintaining the goals of marketing. This marketing mix may also be adapted for services marketing. The service marketing mix is also known as an extended marketing mix and is an integral part of a service blueprint design. The service marketing mix consists of 7 P’s as compared to the 4 P’s of a product marketing mix. Simply said, the service marketing mix assumes the service as a product itself. However it adds 3 more P’s which are required for optimum service delivery.
Figure 1: The 4Ps of product marketing mix and the 7Ps of service marketing mix.
The four Ps (product, price, place & promotion) are said to be controllable variables of the traditional marketing mix. The effective combination of these four Ps components will make an organization to have a competitive edge in preference by the target market. Marketing researches also identified limitations and inefficiencies of traditional marketing mix when applied to services.
In the year 1981 7Ps marketing mix model was suggested by Boom and Bitner to service firms, which was later supported by McGrath and other marketing specialists. In addition to the four Ps in traditional marketing, services marketing mix will have three additional components are Physical evidence, People and Process.
Product – Physical products of organisations are easily identifies and quantified, for instance soap, books, clothes and so forth. However, for service industries like tourism and education organisations, the “product” is arbitrary and difficult to be made tangible. Service products also have certain unique qualities, for instance service products are heterogeneous, perishable and cannot be owned. Therefore, service products have to be designed with great attention. Generally service blue printing is done to define the service product. For example – a school blue print will be prepared before establishing a