Marketing deals with the activities that you carry out to promote and grow your business. This will involve a wide spectrum of activities like researching, advertising, publicity, sales pitching, distribution, merchandising etc. It is highly important for the companies to market their services. To put in a simpler format, these activities will identify the potential leads and customers that will support the growth of the business. It could be a daunting task if the business is not understood and when the target audiences are wrongly identified. All the efforts might go in vain if the fundamentals are not understood properly. Current Scenario of Marketing So, how is marketing perceived in today's concept? Everybody speaks a lot about liberalization and globalization. There are more numbers of competitors in every business arena and it is tough to reach out to the audience. The customers are rather spoiled with too many choices in their mind. The companies have to employ efficient and strategic marketing ideas to stand out from the crowd. This emphasizes the importance to hire smart marketers into the team. “Customer is always right”. It holds true on all scenarios. The marketing plans need to address the requirements of the customers. An effective marketing plan should follow the principle of 4 P's which was first proposed by E. Jerome McCarthy in the year 1960. 4 P's of Marketing 1. Product: Product is the first and foremost to be considered in mind. The company will try to sell its products or its services. The manufacturing of the product does not come into the picture of marketing it. However, the designing, labeling, deciding upon its looks, functionality, and how it can be used by the consumers will be determined by the team of marketers. A thorough market research is required from where the above said information can be collected. It is based upon this information, the marketing strategies should be derived. The marketing department should constantly analyze the needs and requirements of the customers which might change from time to time. All these inputs should be collected at regular intervals and should be used while coming up with new marketing plans. The product functionality can be altered or extra service might be offered depending upon the inputs from market research team. 2. Price: The second important thing to be considered is the price of the product or the service offered. The pricing is fixed based on the number of features, distinguished features, price of the similar products in the market and the customer behavior and their spending nature when it comes to this product. The pricing should be affordable for a common man and should be on par with the prices of the competitor products. However, certain products would be targeted at the higher end customers and the pricing factor will not consider the average buyer's behavior and pattern in this case. The market research plays a vital role here. The research will identify the right kind of customers upon whom the product is targeted. It is after that the pricing should be done. Hence, this explains about the hierarchy flow of product and price. Offering special discounts and offers also comes under this pricing department. 3. Place: This factor will make sure that the product is available at the right place and at the right time. It is very important to have a proper channel of distribution in order to make sure the product reaches the end customer without any delay. The business vendors should make sure there is no shortage of the products when customers would be highly interested to buy them. This factor will help the team to develop a right kind of plan to choose a marketing tool and to come up with ideas to sell the products directly or through whole sale distributors. The right product at the right place and at the right time will contribute to the success rate. This concept holds true in cases of common products and for the exclusive products targeted at high end customers. Make hay while the sun shines. This proverb holds true when we discuss about this factor. 4. Promotion: The last factor among the 4 P's speaks volume about promotion. The product is well built with distinguished features. What will happen if the end user is not aware about the existence of the product. Hence, promotion plays a vital role in taking the product to the customers. There are many sorts of activities involved in this stage such as advertising, branding, sales promotion, public relations etc. A promotional strategy will help the team to adopt the right kind of channel and message to reach the target audience. These promotional strategies will help the customers to make their choice when it comes to buying the products. The cost of promotion will eat up the most part of the marketing budget. Hence, a company should choose the promotional channels after a thorough research and analysis. There are lots of creative and innovative marketing promotion methods available. Conclusion Enhancing the knowledge and experience about 4 P's will play a vital role in contributing to the success factor of the product launch. It holds true for both the service level offerings and product offerings. These factors will ultimately decide on how much profit a business can reap. Hence, the team of marketers should be efficient in understanding the market dynamics to come up with a perfect mix of 4 P's of marketing. The above described scenario holds true for both the cases of traditional and online marketing. The investment will be more in terms of traditional marketing. Every company should also envisage the possibility of doing online marketing in the same manner to get results faster and better.