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I am going to start writing about marketing basics. I see so many entrepreneurs and business owners getting so caught up with the thinking if I just place more ads on Facebook or Google I am going to be rich.

Do you see that in your networking circles? If you really think the above statement is true, I am begging you to keep reading.

In order to sell good and services there is a pattern that needs to be followed. It is known as the 4P’s of marketing. I could potentially write a 100 page book just on this topic, however I am going to keep it super brief.

What are the 4P’s?

It is a pattern to help you move goods from the manufacturer to the consumer. There are four elements to this process. The first is product planning. It is crucial to do research and plan out the right product or service for the right target market. Example, if you were a distributor of diapers, it would make sense to target new or expecting mothers. However, in order to accomplish this task you need to better understand mothers and what they want for their new baby.

The second “P” is placement. Simply, this is ensuring you get your product to the right destination. This involves getting your product in the correct marketing channel. To further our previous example this would mean finding the right place to sell your diapers. More than likely you are not going to sell your diapers in a liquor store. You are more likely to sell your diapers where other baby items are sold.

The third “P” is promotion. This covers everything that takes place in persuading people to buy your product. How are you going to get others to recognize your brand of diapers over the 100’s of other brands.

Fourth, the all important pricing. What are you going to charge for your product? Its important to be sensitive when determining your price because you need to understand what you paid for your product, what it will cost to sell your product and how competitive is your pricing compared to your competition.

Will My Product Sell?

I get the biggest giggles when I come across people that say I developed a million dollar product. I ask them how they know and they say that there friends and family love it. WHAT? Are you really going to rely on the words of your friends and family to tell you that your product is great? What about the other 327 million other people that live in the USA? Market research is a vital part in creating a successful product.

What goes into market research? You need to understand the trends and who you want to sell to. You need to ask yourself if you are solving a problem with your product or service. Why are people going to buy your product? You need to identify where your customers are. Do they only buy on the internet or do they only buy from a big box retailer? I would say most important is you need to know if your potential customer can afford your product.

I find that many do not perform the research because they say it is too expensive. However, when they goto market and have an epic fail they ended up spending much more money then what is cost to do some market research.

How Can I Adapt?

Have you ever had a month where you just knocked it out of the park in sales and the next month becomes the worst sales ever? Ever wondered why this occurs?

When selling products and services it is important to understand that in any marketing environment there are controllable and uncontrollable elements. Some would call this understanding the trends and the climate.

Simply this means that there are times you need to know when to market and advertise more that other times. To give you an example, I sell organic pest control products. It is important that I am being cognizant of the geographic area I am marketing during various parts of the year. I am not going to market my pest control in the dead of winter in Denver, Colorado. However, I know that states like Florida and Arizona typically have bugs ten out of twelve months so I may put more of my efforts in those states instead of Colorado.

Being conscience of selling trends in your product category and adjacent categories are a must.

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