Marketing Center

Marketing models: The four Ps of marketing

Marketing may change, but a marketing mix that includes product, price, placement, and promotion is still important.

Published: July 19, 2017

The four Ps are the key elements for marketing a product or service. They comprise product, price, placement, and promotion, and are sometimes called the main ingredients of the marketing mix. A successful marketer will ensure that each P works with the others in order to increase the appeal of the product or service for the customer.


Ideally, businesses should aim for offerings that are unique to the marketplace so that they can stand out among the competition. However, it may prove difficult to differentiate your product from your competition’s for any extended period. At a bare minimum, you should understand what customers are looking for in terms of product features and benefits, and how they will use the products. Then you can ensure your product can match their needs.


Production costs, projected demand, and competitor strategies all can inform pricing. When considering initial prices or a change to price, properly convey your product’s value to customers, while at the same time being mindful of costs and the effect of price on your long-term revenue.


For manufacturers, placement can mean getting products into established retailers; for retailers, it can mean choosing a location with high foot traffic; for producers of digital products, it can mean placement on distribution platforms with high user numbers.


The ubiquity of digital marketing and social media means that promotion needs to be more multi-faceted and nuanced than in the past. Traditional advertising and direct customer interactions should still be high quality, but a digital audience wants to see the product, understand its value, and connect with the brand identity, all online.

Study various models

The 4 Ps were first introduced over 50 years ago and as marketing has evolved, so have the strategies that businesses look to for direction. Newer theories consider the addition of other P’s such as people, physical evidence, and process. There are even new marketing models such as:

  • Solution, Access, Value, and Education of a product or service (SAVE).

  • A funnel approach that emphasizes marketing messages that support your customers during their buying journey or sales funnel.

It is important, therefore, that in addition to activating marketing tactics and campaigns, you take the time to understand the strategy behind them. This might give you insight on a missing part of your strategy. Start with the 4 Ps, but consider building on that knowledge to account for changes to the market, competitors, and your own business.