The term marketing mix is not alien to anybody associated directly or indirectly with processes associated with Marketing. Marketing Mix is the very foundation of the subject of Marketing, upon which the strong fundamentals and principles of marketing are formulated. The term was coined and popularized by none other than Niel H. Borden, who is known to have propounded many a theories in the field of marketing.

He started using this term as early as in 1940 in his teachings after his contemporary academic expert James Culliton summarized the function of Marketing Manager as the “Mixer of ingredients”. The mixed elements as per Borden’s perception were product, price, place, plan, brand, distribution channel, personal selling, advertising, promotion ,personal package, display, service, physical analysis and fact handling. E. Jerome McCarthy ,another researcher later on grouped these all ingredients in four categories or heads ,that were later on propounded by Borden as the four “ four P’s of Marketing” in 1964.

These four P’s are namely Product, Price, Place and Promotion.

These are classified and known so because a manager in the field of marketing can have direct control over these four elements.

The goal is however to generate a positive response from the customer through the optimum use of above mentioned elements. Further description of these four elements is presented as follows

Product: Product is nothing but the actual physical thing that is sold to the customer .It also includes any other discount, facility, offer or convenience that comes in the way of the customer through his act of purchasing the product. A manager can control several attributes of product to make it more marketable and popular amongst customer. These attributes include things like appearance, functionality and other warranty and service conditions of the product.

Price : Price includes the selling price of the product along with the discount and other financing options available .A manager should price the product competitively in the market

Place: this factor covers the distribution channel of the product and the other logistics that influence the transactional and facilitating attributes of the product.

Promotion: promotional decisions include advertising, public relations and other media related activities. While taking such decisions a manager should do a break even analysis so that costs are controlled and profit is maximized.

The strategic marketing model is one that is used by both large and small businesses. These companies adapt to environmental changes so that they can meet the needs of their customers. Strategic marketing takes several things into account including goals, problems and the implementation of specific services or products. There are several steps to follow to effectively market any product or service.

It is critical for any business to be able to define a problem. The definition of the problem is what gives a business a potential market to serve. These opportunities (or problems) are the reason that many businesses began.

Once the problem or problems have been identified, it is time to set some goals. Understanding the target market needs allows business to prioritize your goals and then target your business efforts accordingly. This is where you would obtain both qualitative and quantitative information to set goals that can be measured.

Next, this is where a business will identify a target market or that certain segment on which to focus your efforts. Once the market is identified, you may consider further segmenting this market to break it down into easier to manage sub-groups. Sub-groups can be based on many factors (usually observable) such as race, age, geographic region, social factors, marital status, employment, values and economic factors.

Next, understanding that "one size does not fit all" it is not crucial to research and analyze your target market. This can be done through a variety of methods including telephone interviews, surveys, message boards, focus groups, etc. After this, you should be able to clearly identify your customer’s wants and needs.

This is now the point to develop an action plan and determine your budget. You must decide what you need to accomplish your goals. It is imperative to use action planning at this point to determine how all of the necessary activities needed to implement your plan.

Finally, it is time to implement your plan. This is when you will introduce your service or product to the marketplace. Implementing is important although the evaluation that will come shortly after will be key to the continued success of the business. Clearly defining your goals, implementing these goals and then properly evaluating your progress is the lynchpin of many successful businesses. This step can also be used to improve existing services or products making them much more customer focused or centered.