To make your business a success, you've got to look at the big picture. The seven functions of marketing can help you to do just that, as they broadly encompass everything that is done to bring a product to market while meeting consumer needs and earning a profit for the company. They are an essential part of an effective business plan.
Pricing your product is what will determine how much profit you make. You must experiment with pricing until you've found the price point at which you are competitive and profitable. You will also need to take your business overhead costs into consideration when setting your prices. You'll need to find out what the demand is for your product, as a product is only worth as much as someone will pay for it.
In a nutshell, selling is providing a way to give your customer what he wants. You can do this in any number of ways. You can sell your product directly to the customer, or sell it at wholesale prices to retailers. You may sell a product made especially for sale to other businesses. You can sell your product online if you want a low overhead.
Financing refers to how your business will obtain the money it needs to start operations and stay operable. This function encompasses investors, financing, budgeting and other financial concerns that your business may have. It also refers to how a customer will pay for the goods or services that you are selling.
A product or service is useless to your business if no one knows about it. The promotion function of marketing refers to the efforts you make to get the word out about what you are selling. This function also encompasses the art of convincing individuals that your product is necessary, better than those the competition offers and is of good quality.
The distribution function of marketing deals with how you will get the products you are selling to your customer. Transportation, warehouses and shipping timelines are part of distribution. Distribution refers to where you will sell your product and also deals with the timing of your product. For example, a business that sells pools may focus their marketing efforts during the spring.
Every business wants their product to be in demand. To ensure that this is the case, businesses manage their products by changing them to fit current trends, increasing quality, evaluating market conditions and other criteria. New products may be developed as the market changes.
Marketing Information Management
If you are trying to decide where to locate a retail outlet, when to release a new game or how much people will pay for a latte, you need to gather data that is specific to the market in which you are selling. You may choose to conduct surveys, analyze existing data or employ other techniques to evaluate whether your target market will be interested in purchasing your product at the price point and location that you are considering.
Elise Wile has been a writer since 2003. Holding a master's degree in curriculum and Instruction, she has written training materials for three school districts. Her expertise includes mentoring, serving at-risk students and corporate training.