The traditional 4Ps marketing mix can be expanded so that it focuses specifically on the customer's needs through the 4Cs marketing mix. In today's competitive business world it makes sense to conduct market research and find out about consumer needs prior to developing a product and setting corporate objectives; not doing so would be to jeopardise the success of your product before you've even sketched out your product design.
The diagram below combines the traditional 4Ps from the marketing mix with the customer focused 4Cs marketing mix
Once the product meets consumer needs the firm must ensure its selling price is affordable for the target audience otherwise the target audience are unlikely to buy your product. Some organisations will aim their product at more than one target audience as this enables them to charge more than one price for their product. They will do this by producing more than one variation of the product. For example car manufacturers produce cars models with different features. Ford's Grand C-Max car has two variations the Zetec and the Titanium. The Titanium which is more expensive than the Zetec has more standard features.
Marketing Mix 4Cs Convenience
It should be convenient for your customers to transact with your company and buy your product. The process of buying your product should also not be one dimensional. Can your customers:
Buy from a store
Click and collect
Have the option of on-line and home delivery
Have pick up points from other stores.
Marketing Mix 4Cs Communication
An important part of the 4Cs is communication. It is not just about the promotional mix but about how the firm will communicate clearly the benefit of the product to the end user. Remember consumers buy benefits not products. A product strategy is to offer the benefit of fulfilling a need. Communication should also be two way and aim to develop a relationship with customers so the customer keeps coming back. Communication is a key element of relationship marketing.
The 4Cs are not a replacement for the traditional 4Ps Marketing Mix, instead the 4Cs Marketing Mix should compliment the traditional marketing mix, so that together they help firms balance meeting the firm's objectives with responding to the changing needs of their customers.