Basic Marketing Principles 101

Basic Marketing Principals: Product, Place, Promotion, Price (The 4 Ps).
Basic Marketing Principals: Product, Place, Promotion, Price (The 4 Ps).

As a digital marketer, it is essential that to understand how to apply basic marketing principles for each and every job role/client. Whether you’re a digital marketing apprentice or just looking to brush up on the basics, read on.

Basic Marketing Principles: The Marketing Mix

The idea of the marketing mix was initially brought about by Neil Borden. Professor Borden first conceptualised the idea of the “4 Ps” in the 1950s, and ever since it has been adapted and adopted into everyday marketing efforts. Recently, 3 more Ps have been added to the mix, which includes People, Process and Physical Evidence. However, we will focus on the initial 4 here.

It has fluidity, which means marketing apprentices and gurus alike, can focus efforts on individual aspects of the mix.


Product refers to what a company sells, whether it be a physical item or service. It should serve to fill a gap in the market, and supply a demand. Marketers can be innovative, and create demand if the supply is already there. For example, Coca Cola moved into the UK bottled water industry with Dasani. An already pretty saturated market, Coca Cola marketed the water as “one of the purest waters around”. Coca Cola didn’t take long to withdraw the product when it was found to contain bromate, a substance linked to cancer.

Marketers need to understand that products have a life cycle, it just so happened that Dasani water met decline faster than it should.

Alternatively, Apple was the first to develop a touch screen phone, capable of playing music. The iPhone launched in 2007, and the company has since sold over 2 billion units. The iPhone is now said to be in the maturity stage of the product life cycle. To find out more about the product life cycle, visit this page.


Place dictates where the product or service should be supplied. The aim is to get the product/service in front of as many potential customers as possible. This may be placing a product in certain shops, or even product placement on TV and films. For example, the James Bond movie GoldenEye was the first to feature a BMW Z3 as the iconic Bond car, even before the car was released. BMW received 9,000 after the film launched.


Promotion encompasses how the product/service is to advertised as well as public relations. Basically, why should someone buy into the brand’s product or service? Promotion and place tend to go hand in hand in this respect. For example, where does a product feature on a website, and how will this be promoted towards a specific audience. For digital marketers, SEO is a particularly important component to how well placed and promoted a product or service is on the internet.


How much will the public be willing to pay for a product or service. In this element of the marketing mix, it is important to conduct market research. What exactly is the real value of the product or service, and what is the perceived value (also in comparison to competitors) is very important. Marketers have raised prices of a product to raise the perceived value, however if this is overdone, the product/service can see a vast decline very quickly if this is found to be the case. The Coca Cola example featured above is also relevant in this case.


The marketing mix will be incorporated into marketing strategy for decades to come. Even expect more adaptations! However, if you are a marketing apprentice looking to cover the basic marketing principles, we hope this article was to your satisfaction.

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