Marketing Strategy

At the heart of any business strategy is a marketing strategy

Businesses exist to deliver products that satisfy customers.


Marketing is the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion, and distribution of ideas, goods, and services. A marketing strategy is composed of several interrelated components called the marketing mix: The Marketing mix consists of answers to a series of product and customer related questions.


The Marketing Mix

            1.    Market selection

                        a.    Who are the customers or subset (segment) of customers you are targeting?

            2.    Product planning

                        a.    What products are the company going to design or OEM for the selected customers?

                        b.     What are the product features uniquely targeting this market?

                        c.    How will the product be packaged?

            3.    Pricing

                        a.    Pricing is a quantitative expression of the value of the product to the customer.

                        b.    Pricing should be designed like a feature consistent with the use of the product.

                        c.    What will you charge for and How much?

                        d.    How will the customer pay and when?

                        e.    See also the discussion of the Price/Features matrix

            4.    Place

                        a.    Which channel, direct, wholesale or retail channels best moves and delivers the product and its benefits to the selected market?

            5.    Promotion

                        a.    Positioning:    What is the message that states the purpose and benefits of the product in the market and how it competes?

                        b.    Selling:            Direct or indirect through others?

                        c.    Communications

                                                How will people be informed about your product, showing them how it can be useful, and persuading them to buy it?

                                                What role should branding play?

                        d.    Support and Service

                                                How does the customer get help if needed to make the product work and replacing or repairing it when it’s broken?


Decision Making Unit and the Decision Making Process

                        The actual selling process breaks down into two components called the decision making unit (DMU) and the decision making process (DMP). 


                        The DMU) decision making unit


                                    The DMU) consists of all of the people who will play a role in the decision to purchase a product. The marketing mix program must understand the needs of each of these                           individuals and find a way to communicate the marketing message to each of them.  These people are typically identified as:


                                                Buyer – the person who actually issues the check. (For example the purchasing agent, or the individual consumer)
                                                Decider – the person or group that actually says this is the product we want, i.e. the MIS manager
                                                Influencer – who helps the decider decide, i.e. the press, analysts, peers, evaluation groups
                                                User – the individual or group who actually uses the product and derives benefit from it


                        The decision making process (DMP)


                        The people included in the decision making unit (DMU) interact to make the purchasing decision.

                        The (DMP) is a description of this interaction.  By understanding this process a salesperson can best understand who, how, and when to work on getting the customer order.


                          For example:

A company has decided to pick a workstation standard

The engineering VP will make the decision. 

Since the standard affects all software engineers within the company, an evaluation team is formed to make the recommendation. 

The evaluation team hires a consultant to research alternatives.  The consultant has great influence due to his strong technical background.

Recent magazine articles are also reviewed.

After a few months, the evaluation team makes a recommendation and the VP R&D decides to accept it and go ahead.

The purchasing manager is asked to negotiate the best deal. 

The salesperson for the winning workstation company was on top of and influenced every person at every stage of the decision making process.