Here is a detailed overview of the People, Process and Physical Evidence (Packaging) of the marketing mix. By adding these three aspects to the marketing mix, you get what is known as the “7 P’s of Marketing.”
People. An extremely important part of any company is having the right people to support the company’s products and/or service. Excellent customer service personnel who can provide support with clearly known expectations, such as hours of operation and average response time, is key to maintaining a high level of customer satisfaction. Customer service skills were discussed in lesson 9. Lessons 1 through 4 cover everything from how to lead the people, to hiring, retaining, training, and building teamwork. Knowledgeable staff adds much value to the product offering.
Process. Solid procedures and policies that are in place, which pertains to the company’s products and/or service, is an extremely valuable element to the marketing strategy. Customers want to understand more than just your product; they also want to focus on the shape and form your business will take.
Physical Evidence/Packaging. This refers to the way your product, service, and everything about your company, appears from the outside. Decisions need to be made about the size, shape, color, material, UPC bar code, and label of the packaging. This should be customer tested and updated when needed. It should fall in line with your other product offerings as well. Packaging involves the visual layout, practical setup, and when needed for products, clear and precise installation instructions.
Product liability insurance is needed in case anyone suffers any harm from your product. Engineering tests are also needed to make sure the package can stand up to abuses. There may also be regulatory issues to consider.
Visual packaging of a tangible product can make or break a purchase. Small improvements in the packaging or external appearance of your product or service can lead to completely different reactions from your customers.
It is also important in selling and marketing services and intangible products that you can’t see, but that you can provide the support needed to the customer who can see and feel the physical evidence.
Physical Evidence can also refer to the people within your company and how they dress and act. It can refer to how your office is set up, the professionalism of your staff, nice brochures, how you interact with your customer base, and every single visual element about your company.