What is the best marketing system

The most important marketing tools for your marketing mix

All marketing instruments at a glance

Before a founder can place his new product on the market, he has to deal with a fundamental topic as part of his corporate strategy: the design of his marketing. In business administration, marketing is understood to mean all those measures of a company that serve to position itself on the market in order to be able to sell its own service or product successfully - in this respect, marketing has a direct influence on the company's success and is an important one Pillar of a company. But what exactly does that mean in practice?

In order to illustrate this theoretical introduction, relevant marketing instruments are presented below. The four essential marketing instruments can be summarized as a marketing mix according to the classic model of the 4Ps:

  • Product (product policy):
    Product policy as one of the marketing instruments deals with the question of how to design the optimal product for your own target group so that added value is created for the customer.
  • Price (pricing policy):
    The pricing policy encompasses all of the company's decisions that affect the pricing of a product.
  • Place (distribution policy):
    Distribution policy answers the question of how a product gets to the customer. The types of distribution channels are diverse and must be adapted to the target group and product type.
  • PhD (communication policy):
    Before the customer buys a product, he must find out about its existence and its added value. Communication policy deals with precisely this problem. It is one of the marketing instruments that is most widely perceived by the public.

The combination of all marketing instruments is called a marketing mix. The marketing instruments are designed or weighted differently depending on the type of industry, product and target group. The marketing mix for consumer goods is different from that for companies that offer services, for example.

But the target group also has a significant influence on the marketing mix. If you try to win private customers as a company, the 4Ps are usually an important marketing tool. On the other hand, if you are targeting companies, direct sales are often an important marketing tool.

Marketing tools for service companies

Due to the increased demand for services in recent decades and the associated rise to a service society, the 4Ps model for service-oriented companies has been expanded to include three further marketing instruments:

  • Process (process policy):
    The process of service creation can affect customer satisfaction with a service and is therefore also regarded as one of the marketing instruments.
  • People (personnel policy):
    When providing a service, the focus is often on a person in the form of the service provider, for example the hairdresser. Since customer satisfaction can be largely dependent on this person, personnel policy is another of the marketing tools.
  • Physical Facilities:
    The premises or environment in which a service is provided can have a decisive impact on the customer's perception of the quality of the service. The furnishing policy as one of the marketing instruments deals with measures to optimize these locations.

The background to the addition of three further marketing instruments to the classic model is in particular the special characteristics of a service compared to conventional products.

Services are usually of an immaterial nature, so it is difficult to examine their quality before purchasing them. In addition, the customer, such as the masseur, is often involved in the service process as a so-called external factor, which is also left out of the classic view of the 4Ps.

Marketing mix: choosing the right marketing tools

The marketing mix, i.e. the combination of the relevant marketing instruments, looks different for every company. However, it should be noted that companies in similar industries or with similar products can show a comparable marketing mix.

Which marketing instruments should be designed for which company depends on the one hand on the type of service (product or service) and on the industry in which the company is located. Another major difference in the selection of marketing instruments also shows up depending on the respective target group:

Companies with private customers as their target group (B2C) design their marketing instruments fundamentally differently than companies that target other companies (B2B). The different approaches to the selection and design of the respective marketing instruments are explained below.

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Marketing tools in a B2C business model

A company with a B2C business model operates what is known as B2C marketing or consumer goods marketing. The selection of marketing instruments depends on the individual consumer, as this is usually the only one who decides on the purchase of a product.

In consumer goods marketing, a distinction is made between two different product types:

  • Consumables:
    These are short-term consumer goods such as food, which have a short lifespan.
  • Consumer Goods:
    Televisions or washing machines are typical consumer goods and have a longer lifespan.

Depending on the type of good, the choice of marketing instruments is different. When buying a consumer good, for example, buyers are often less price sensitive than buyers of consumer goods, which can have an impact on pricing policy.

In consumer goods marketing - in contrast to the B2B business model - a stronger focus is placed on distribution policy. Since the mass market usually has to be reached in B2C business, indirect sales are often used. A product is not sold directly by the manufacturer to the end customer, but only brought to the end customer via several intermediaries.

Other important marketing instruments in consumer goods marketing are communication and pricing policy. Due to strong competition and many similar products, customers find it difficult to decide which product to use. B2C companies therefore concentrate on these two marketing instruments in order to generate customer attention through communication and pricing that are different from the competition.

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Marketing tools in a B2B business model

Business models with corporate customers as a target group operate B2B marketing or capital goods marketing. The design of the marketing instruments differs significantly from consumer goods marketing because the products have different properties and the buyers show different buying behavior.

As one of the marketing instruments, communication policy is not aimed at a single customer, as is the case with the B2C business model, but at a so-called buying center, i.e. at a large number of people involved within the company. Ordinary media advertising is seldom found in the B2B sector, instead a presence at exhibitions and trade fairs plays a much larger role.

Capital goods are often more expensive, require more explanation and have a longer lifespan than B2C products. Due to the long-term business relationships, maintenance and service play a greater role in product policy than in consumer goods marketing.

There are also fundamental differences in the orientation of marketing instruments in capital goods marketing in distribution policy. The higher the quality of the product to be sold, the more likely the selling company will rely on direct sales. Often they are very special or individual products for which there are only a handful of buyers in the entire world. Potential buyers are known in such a case, so direct sales is the only sensible sales channel here.

Choosing the right marketing instruments and designing them correctly is therefore a major challenge for every entrepreneur. You can also find out which marketing instruments should be combined and how in our article on the marketing mix.

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Author: Für-Gründer.de editors

As editor-in-chief, René Klein has been responsible for the content of the portal and all publications by Für-Gründer.de for over 10 years. He is a regular conversation partner in other media and writes numerous external specialist articles on start-up topics. Before his time as editor-in-chief and co-founder of Für-Gründer.de, he advised listed companies in the field of financial market communication.