The marketing mix and the complex packages of products and services
- Category: Marketing
- Hits: 3,014
Resume: From its appearance until now, marketing has been approached under diverse aspects, from market theories to constituent elements, all being based on the four elements of the marketing mix: product, price, placement and promotion, developing around them specific policies, the inner correlations, investigation methods and techniques, experimental texts and motivation studies.
The development of products with special characteristics, highly specialized, but also the ever growing competition between producers and sellers, the more diversified and elaborate options of customers, wanting to satisfy superior needs, like recognition, social status and esteem, safety, appreciation, all lead to the apparition and commercialization of complex product and service packages.
These cannot be analyzed and reflected in the scientific literature with just the classic elements of the marketing mix. To these, we can add the process, people, tightly linked to the process and the physical evidence, or place where the personnel interacts with the customers. Keywords: marketing mix, complex package of products and services, product, price, placement, promotion, process, people, physical place.
In marketing, it is well known the composition of the classic marketing mix, identified and developed in the area of large consumptions goods, respectively product, price, placement and promotion.
These words, known generically as the 4P (all start with the same initial), have become the key elements of the marketing science, concentrating around them all marketing researches and market policies of an organization.
The supply, production and commerce process analysis, at an organizational level and at the level of the relations between these and its acting market is based on the four elements, whose importance has been understood right from the beginnings of marketing as a science, when it was essential the production orientation, based on the realization of products from the resources that the firm could obtain relatively easy, being at their disposal or in the immediate proximity.
The price for these products had to cover the production expenses and bring a profit to the organization. The recovery of expenses from the total turnover through their selling, depended, of course, on their placement on the market, to the target consumers, through various channels of distribution.
The buyers were informed about the existence of these products and their characteristics through several forms of promotion: publicity, public relation, direct sales and sales promotions. It is a rather simple but exact approach of the marketing mix, in traditional terms, which we could actually call classic today, if we report to the changes and evolutions of the market and the consumer behavior.
But today, consumers have become more exigent, more selective, more careful on what they buy, and especially how they buy, to the facilities they are being offered when they buy something, the conditions on which they buy, the manner in which they are treated as customers when they buy something physical, on one hand as customers of commercial firms, that effectively sell products and related services at the same time and on the other hand, as customers of a productive organization, directly responsible for the quality of the products and degree of satisfaction they bring when used.
With different word, the actual consumer does not buy in the present buying process just a physical good and at least the commercial service that comes with this good. The politeness of the seller, which is accompanied by the necessary information to use the good, which modern customers ask and receive when they buy something, is continued by the post selling activities, the granted warranties, the service, surveying the good when consumed, evaluating the degree of satisfaction, obtaining a stable client, recognizing under one form or another the respect that the client if getting in modern commercial processes from the producers or sellers.
Today’s goods are commercialized together with accompanying services; there are just a few simple goods, the number of goods that are part of a products and services package that are sold together is always increasing, exactly with the purpose of attracting, satisfying and keeping client, in a world where the difference in sales is not mostly done through the quality of the products, which are also increasing, but is done more through the services offered together with the product, their purpose being to impress the customers, make them come back, satisfy them and attract them on a medium and long term on the side of satisfied customers through the manner in which they were served and respected by the selling organization through their selling force.
But beyond these commercial services that are offered with the products in the selling process, we cannot encounter solitary products with no additional or complementary services in no other domain:
- When buying a car and enjoying the services that come with it, starting with the commercial and finishing with service assurance;
- Buying a house assures the consultancy of the consultancy firm; Following a class and getting a physical object, like a book, course or electronic format together with the actual lectures, explications and instructions of the professor;
- Buying a medicine based on a medical prescription usually also gets you detailed information about that medicine and use indications from the pharmacist;
- Leaving in a vacation with a bus, you have your own place, but also get the transport service;
- Staying in a hotel, you have a room that offers all comfort, eventually a pool, sauna, but also get professional assistance, room service, SPA, safety deposit services; Visiting a beautiful place, chose as a tourist destination, you admire landscapes, monuments, art pieces, but also listen fascinated the explications offered by the tour guide;
- Going to a hospital to take care of medical problems, you get your own bed in a salon and the necessary comfort, but you also get the necessary investigations, the needed treatment from medication, physical and psychological rehabilitation to surgical interventions;
- Doing a life and home insurance, you also get the trust that you and your family will be protected against unplanned negative events;
- Contracting a bank loan, you receive the money based on a credit contract, you are counseled and helped to choose the best type of loan for you regarding the amount of time, so that you will be able to return it without financial problems;
- Even if you effectively work in a research or production department, you have you own locker-room, an adequate environment with heat, luminosity, tools and recreation break, all in order to give the maximum efficiency when creating a product;
- Financial issues that are related to daily life, from financial statements to bill payment, can be resolved from home, online, using the internet or by going to various institutions, where it is very important the ambiance and the way you are received and served, from the politeness of the employees to the couch or chair you sit on, the newspaper you can read while you wait that has the purpose to ensure that you do not lose any time waiting to be served.
You enjoy diverse and pleasant services, vital for the modern people, services that come together with physical goods and without which, these goods would not be perceived in the same way.
In modern society, the buyers’ claims increase almost exponentially, they are always more exclusive, more selective, more careful about what they buy and more critical about the satisfaction they receive, especially because they have more terms of comparison, they are more educated, know what they want and know there are various possibilities to buy, some better than others, that go into direct competition, which leads to the continual development of products and services that are bought by customers.
The modern man is, or he should be, an educated man, with a certain level of welfare, a wide vision over life in general, less tolerant with himself and more with the others, with ever growing needs that are diversified for all its necessities, which are no longer just material, elementary for his existence, but have evolved on the need scale from physiological, of food, clothing, home, to the psychological, of social integration, social status and esteem, economy, safety, recognition, accomplishment and continual evolution.
All these needs are superior ones and are satisfied especially by services. Between them, we can also find tangible goods, that make the perception of satisfaction much more real, more physical or material.
If the elementary physiological needs are satisfied especially through good commercialized with the purpose of covering them, together with services directly associated with the production and selling processes, superior needs are tied exactly to the carrying of specialized services, to the quality of these services, the manner and place they were offered, the human resources that carried them, doubled, of course, by tangible objects, by goods that accompany these services and that sometimes are associated directly to the carried service or are an integrated part of it.
Thus, we can no longer speak about services and goods, but about them together, offered to customers as a package of products and services that accompany these products or in a package of services and products that accompany these services. We are actually talking about the complex package of products and services that is being offered to the actual customer, whose expectations from this package are much greater, more elaborate and more sophisticated than in the past.
In this context, even the classic marketing, developed more on the support of large consummation goods, in exchange processes that were focused mainly on production and selling markets, should have another opening in my opinion, another approach regarding the modern customer, as a demand carrier for everything that is being produced and commercialized.
Unfortunately, the demand’s size and existence for these complex packages of goods and services, is in direct connection with the level of income for potential beneficiaries, which substantially reduces the work areas for marketing departments.
One cannot offer quality goods and services, with high taxes, to some people that cannot afford them, even with loans, just like one cannot offer, in the XXI century, mediocre and sub-mediocre goods and services just because they have low expenses. One way or another, the society should evolve, beyond the expenses, sometimes immense, that this evolution requests.
The actual customer is more sensitive to the manner he is being served, the politeness and professionalism of the ones who sell the good or carry the service, the ambiance in which all these are done, the place where he gets a certain satisfaction, place that leaves an imprint in his mind, as a first sign for the total satisfaction, the quality of the whole, which cannot be described in all its complexity by using just the well known elements of the marketing mix: product, price, placement and promotion.
I think that the marketing world needs to surpass the view that limits the structure of the marketing mix to just four elements, which tighten somehow the importance that other elements such as the human resources, the place where the customer is being served and the general perception over the offer have in the selling processes.
In the service marketing, the four elements that compose the classic structure of the marketing mix, that is product, price, placement and promotion (the 4P) have new features, by adding three new vital elements for the existence of a service: the process or the actual activity of carrying the service, the people that carry the service, but also the ones that are the beneficiaries and the place, or carry area, the place where the activity is taking place, seen as a geographical coordinate (other 3P).
In other words, the marketing mix in the services domain is more complex than the classic one, usually found in the domain of large consuming goods, has seven elements, keeping the same letter for all of them, already famous in marketing: p (from the 4p to the 7p) and consists of:
- Process, as a central element, without an effective material substance;
- Product, as a complementary element of the process that helps it become slightly tangible;
- Price – total for the process and product offered as a whole package to the customer, replaced most of times with the notion of fare or tariff;
- Placement, distribution of the service, realized through direct contact of the one who carries the service with the beneficiary, coming closer to the source of the service, the exchange is made in the moment of the actual carrying and in the perimeter of the service offered to the customer;
- People that carry the service and having a direct impact on its quality: own people, meaning the personnel of the organization, its human resources (the personnel has to be active, sufficient to respond all requests, operative, motivated, clear in actions and dedicated to the interests of the organization) and over the manner in which it is perceived by those that receive the service, the customers of the organization (market-people, people intended to be part of the market segment that the offer is addressed to);
- Place, location, area in which the service is being carried and that localizes in space a service, its perception being in direct connection with the ambiance that is created in this place; much attention is needed to the utilized equipment and informative materials that are found on site;
- Promotion, as a permanent communication of the seller with the beneficiary, to which a promise is being offered, a hope, a future satisfaction, through the trust he has in the selling organization, trust formed by messages received from it; the symbols linked to the image of the firm have a special importance, the name and image of the firm having a major impact on the client’s perception of the service.
According to the composition of the marketing mix in services, even if in the service sector, the process is by definition, without material substance, in the actual practice, there is a simultaneous companionship, existing a benefic synergy for the efficiency of the activities deployed by companies and for the satisfaction received by customers between the carried services and the products they include or between the offered goods and the services that accompany them; so it is difficult to delimitate in practice the actual goods from the pure services, actually having to do with complex packages of goods and services that are offered to customers simultaneously and by which they beneficiate without necessarily knowing that they dispose of different categories of utilities.
The described offers can be composed of:
A good that by excellence is tangible but is alone, not being accompanied by anything else than the selling service, offered with its effective acquisition; this is the case of large consuming goods, bought directly from the markets and for whose sale, because it has a high repeatability, there aren’t too many efforts to attract buyers by offering services that will increase their attraction; these are sold especially for their high utility and for the elementary satisfaction they bring to consumers (for example: selling bread, milk, vegetables, meat, deodorants, shampoo, books etc.).
A service as such, without elements of tangible goods, with just a promised value, offered as a value of intrinsic satisfaction, without material means of intermediation, assimilated to the classic form of service manifestation (for example: services offered by consultancy firms, lawyer bureaus, psychotherapy, massage, artistic managing etc.).
A good as a base value, accompanied by goods that complete it, of smaller value and services that accentuate it and increase its value, making it more attractive; this is the case of high value goods, that are not bought frequently, for their acquisition, the actual customer needs time to think and study the existing offers; organizing presentation salons is often encountered in selling luxury products, starting with automobiles, continuing with IT and home appliances and finishing with jewelry, natural fur, fashion, art objects and interior decorations; all these need the existence of a true industry of services along with the actual products and all of them have developed services of selling, presenting, delivering, warranty, service, facilities, discounts, maintenance, repair etc., services that were able to develop afterwards on their own, having a faithful market already formed among those that chose to buy an expensive, quality product, that had a long lasting utility and that will need the services that accompany these products and assure the exclusive image on the market.
A service recognized as such, of notoriety, accompanied by auxiliary services and a series of goods that make it attractive, increase its value and recognition as a service; actually, from the development of this type of offer, we have passed to the recognition of the permanent relationship that should exist between services and the goods that accompany them in the actual process and that increase their value and the satisfaction that customers get. Such a service would be the tourism one, that exists in pure form, people needing recreation and recuperation in their free time and for that they buy, for example, an excursion as a base service for a programmed period of time, during which they will need an auxiliary service of transportation through a transportation means, a bus or shuttle, will have dinner in restaurants and memories on the trip, etc.
All this form a complex package of tourism products and services, the support service being the tourism one, respectively the carrying of the acquisitioned service as a future promise of a beautiful trip, interesting, entertaining and relaxing; all that this trip means, all the utilities and advantages offered, actually come to increase the perceived value, the satisfaction received by the ones that consume the actual excursion.
There are situations where the percentage of the product and of the service in the offer package is hard to differentiate in what concerns the element that dominates, their importance being almost equal; there are equilibrium situations of carrying a service and selling a good, seen as an offer hybrid, the distinction between the importance of one or the other being hard to distinguish:
- an interior design job is perceived through the quality of the work done, but also through the quality of the used materials;
- spending a special evening in a restaurant depends on the served menu, but also on the manner it is being served;
- the voyage with a transportation means also depends on the comfort that its utilities offer, etc.
Services can be differentiated not only after their composition, more or less tangible, but also after the people that carry them, the personnel that carry that service and that can do this having a certain qualification; also we can differentiate services by the used equipments, some needing their existence (medical services), others not (lawyer bureau); if we rapport to the time of the process for the beneficiary, some services are consumed effectively in the interest of the people – customer that has to be present (medical service), others will be appreciated in time and as a final utility, without needing the presence of the customer every time (lawyers can represent the interest of a person even if not present).
Services represent those actions done by firms in the interest of subjects that represent them, having a precise purpose that cannot be assimilated to a property transfer over a good and cannot be measured in quantitative forms.
They can also accompany material goods, forming with them complex packages of goods and services, the value of the goods and their structure offering the quality of the service and this quality also increases the perceived value of the tangible good. To better understand the notion of service, that in marketing has the role of actual process, accompanying the product and making it more attractive, we can start from its general characteristics, already known, generally true for all services:
Services are intangible
Services are intangible, cannot be touched, smelled, tasted, felt or seen, cannot be presented to customers so they cannot be perceived as a real material good; their perception is not even tied to a palpable image, but with one created through sensations. As such, when we decide to buy a service, we are based more on what we know, what we have heard about that service, on the information that come from this service; our acquisition intention is more a promise for the utility and satisfaction we expect to get once we make use of a certain service.
Risks and uncertainties increase when acquiring a service because is not something that can be measured directly, so there is more skepticism in the purchase of services in comparison with that of goods and is very important in shaping purchase beliefs the impact with the company image that you call to in order to get a service, the trust inspired by its staff, the atmosphere in which the service has been performed, the promotional materials that can inform you and other means of communication through which you can get a first tangency with the service you expect to receive.
Those that carry out services, always try to materialize them as much as possible, providing actual materials, tangible, in order to convince customers that those services exist and can be consumed, more and more, services overlap over tangible goods because these provide visible support material, that people need in order to gain confidence in a promise of future satisfaction awarded by the service itself. Purchasing a service, conviction of a person to choose a certain service that he actually wants but does not want to have he’s expectations deceived, is based on:
Information we receive on the quality of the service that we shall call; most times this is received from other consumers who have used these services and that can transmit a good image or not, they are actually the primary messengers of the service firms. If in the case of goods, rumors can be validated or not by the existing product, in the case of services, there is no possibility of confrontation, the client is taking everything as he receives.
The people providing the service, their kindness, the professionalism they demonstrate, how they know to make themselves liked by customers and lure them by inspiring feelings of trust and safety, first impression left on the customer.
The environment in which the service is being carried, the attractiveness of the place, the sensation of luxury and cleanliness, of welcoming and harmonious space, the technical equipment and the measure of confidence that the customer has in the company, information material in sight to suggest efficiency, quality, speed and convenience of service provision. -
The price charged for services in relation to the competition but also the relationship between it and the quality offered, more than in trading goods, people emphasize, when services are provided, the satisfaction they receive by agreeing to pay more if they receive more attention, more respect and ultimately, more satisfaction but will also be more disappointed, compared to using a good, if they pay for services that are not up to their claims.
The whole image of the company, its brand name, symbols that characterize it, the logo that represents it, a certain publicity slogan with impact on the public, the notoriety it enjoys, the prestige and tradition that it has, the confidence and the attraction that it brings.
All these features of services, that cannot be treated as an asset of a tangible, material good, is the argument for the introduction of the process (p) as an element in the marketing mix.
Services are inseparable
Services are inseparable in relation to those providing them, whether we are dealing with services provided by people or by machinery and other technical equipments; if the goods are first produced and then stored, sold and only after the sale can be consumed, services are first sold and then are produced and consumed, the storage operation can no longer find its purpose if we are talking about services.
Compared with the manufacturing of products, sale and consumption in services take place through direct contact, directly and bilaterally between the one who provides the service and the one that consumes it, the provider and the consumer have a direct contact based on communication through the service carried by one and consumed by the other.
The doctor needs its patient in order to treat or operate him, the teacher needs the student to convey his knowledge and conduct the education act, the waiter needs the customer to able to serve as his order, the artist needs public in the hall to perform his number, carrier needs passengers, insurance agent needs the person who will benefit from the insurance policy, the staff at bank counters needs direct contact with the customers, etc.
Most of times, service also contain a material object that is consumed, in general, the same time as the service:
- recipes or medicines
- books or other materials
- tickets and programs for shows
- trip tickets
- insurance contracts
- payment documents
As such, we can say that there is a permanent and direct contact, an interaction provider-customer, inside the services marketing, that has to be taken into account when analyzing the complex domain of services. This analysis cannot oversee the complete analyzing of the human resource that is involved in the carrying of the service because, more than anywhere else in the economy, the final satisfaction that the customer feels depends on the quality of the human resource, its knowledge and the manner it provides the service.
The capacity to provide services cannot be stored and used some other time, a certain continuity is needed in providing services, which most of times cannot be controlled because it depends on the psychological estate of the person involved, the conjuncture, the ambiance and a series of other factors pretty hard to control and influence; on the other side, providing services is limited quantitatively, which means that if the request for a specific service will increase, it will be pretty difficult to satisfy it on a short term.
Most of times, an increase of perceived tariffs is used instead of winning more customers on a short term, that anyway would not be satisfied by using the same number of staff members and the same capacities on a short term.
With other words, it is difficult to prepare in a short time the providing of some services to the level of the request if this was not forecast because it’s difficult to shape people and behaviors on a short term. On the other hand, one cannot afford to ruin the image created often with efforts, in order to win on the short-term in financial terms, but by losing long-term customer trust; total quality in services, is the focus of any marketing strategy in this area.
Services are variable in time
Services are variable in time, because they categorically depend on the participation of people in their supply and consumption, people that are not identical, they behave differently in similar situations and who may not react the same in a different time and space, even if they are subject to same providing stimuli; in fact the quality of services depend on who, where, when and how they provide and by what means. The level of performance in services is extremely variable from one person to another and from one day to another.
These issues determine the appliance of permanent training strategies inside service companies, strategies that focus on the perpetual improvement of personnel, its motivation at a level that will increase their loyalty to the firm and its objectives, to integrate it as a lifestyle in the firm’s aspiration ensemble, in its organizational culture, to make it become servable, careful and polite in any moment, beyond its own problems or state of spirit.
One can make use of motivations studies, periodic market studies that show how the company image and the services provided by the its personnel have evolved among customers; although it is very difficult to replace the human resource in services, where possible, it is preferable to introduce special equipments that are not influenced by external disturbing factors: machines for credit cards or selling products, internet clubs, self-service gas pumps, telephone calling cards, etc.
Because it is extremely difficult to assess the quality of a certain service, there is a certain standardization used currently for the work duties and for the equipment of every person: badges, robes, same aspect for complex packages of products and services, personalized gifts, identical ambiance, common themes, similar spaces, colors and sounds in the same tone (Metro, Carrefour, Mall, McDonald’s, VoxMaris, etc.).
This also includes the possibility of customers to discuss directly with those that realize the packages of products and carry out the services that accompany them, so that their complaints and observations can be expressed directly and any reclamation is solved instantly, by the same person that produced the eventual mishap.
These characteristics valid for services, cannot be broken by those that come directly into contact with customers, presenting and exemplifying the offer; they represent the interface of the organization, the selling force with an impact purpose, whether we are talking about, sellers, secretaries, doormen or doctors, professors, counselors, architects, clerks, etc, that means everything that forms the human resource, the people (p) of the organization, taken into consideration as a self sustaining element of the marketing mix.
Services are perishable
Services are perishable, they cannot be stored to be commercialized afterwards and are consumed effectively when produced and provided; this implies that their analysis will be made on the spot and during their production but also that the volume of services, not being constant, there has to be the possibility to carry them out in relation to the demand that is variable in time and space.
Most of times, companies providing services have the general impediment that dimensioning the providing capacities should correspond to the demand in its maximum point and will remain unused in periods where the demand decreases (for instance the seasonality of tourism determines that a great part of the utilities remain unused outside the season, the passenger transport can vary during the day based on passenger traffic, health services are used randomly, depending on health problems different from one person to another, etc.).
In these conditions, it is normal to ask for different tariffs depending on the volume of the demand: greater when the demand increases, to discourage it, and smaller when it is stagnating or decreasing to stimulate it. Firms can also make use of the reservation services to avoid crowding some periods compared to others (programming medical visits, restaurants or hotels, etc.).
To assure that the personnel of the service companies do not stay without activity during periods of declining demand or so the technical support does not remain unused, one can make use of hiring staff for determined periods of time, seasonal, collaboration contracts, renting equipments, low utilization programs and associations in carrying services, etc.
In what concerns the demand, it is recommended to be stimulated during periods of decline so that the efficiency of the process is not affected by awarding facilities to the customers, bonuses, reductions, gratuities, complementary services offered with the base service, various attractions that make the customer change its current habits if the economies that can be made in this period are simulative.
The most profitable service companies are those that give their customers the spotlight, reaching a state of even being obsessed with them; this is the only way to build a long term loyalty among customers and one can create new demand segments; one has to relate of course to the competition, to what the others are offering, to supervise on one side the quality of own services and on another side, to see what others are doing and how one can surpass them without forgetting that beyond the satisfaction of the customers, one has to think about the satisfaction of the employees, to make them give maximum efforts, of physical and intellectual nature, in the advantage of the company and in the detriment of the competition.
Services are also characterized by the lack of property
Services are also characterized by the lack of property, especially because they are not doubled by tangible goods, that can be used by somebody for a period and then can be transmitted again to another person, also giving away the property right. Services are usually used for a limited period of time and one does not remain with anything palpable after that period; they remain as a memory at most, an impression over a privilege that one has enjoyed for a period and of which others will enjoy after without existing a property right in this respect.
More and more service providers offer inside services various tangible goods, souvenirs, apparently without a high financial value, but that can offer the sensation of property to the consumers on the long term: brochures with places where one has traveled or with the facilities that a bank offers if one makes us of its services, small traditional objects from the visited areas, tariff discounts for loyal customers, the possibility to be part of a group, an association and clubs based on a member card for beneficiaries of certain groups of services, discount cards for certain products limited to certain percents established based on contractual clauses between firms that provide quality services and that want to invest in their brand image and firms that sell tangible goods for their customers, etc.
These aspects tie together products and services to the place where they are offered, the climate and ambiance in which the potential buyer is welcomed and convinced to transform in an effective customer, that is the place (p) of the offer, taken in consideration as self existing element, that amazes and attracts the customer, inside the marketing mix.
Generally, the present marketing makes the transition from the orientation of the firm towards its own possibilities when it does an economic activity, to an orientation towards its exterior, towards the study of the market, the company is not seen as a self sustaining entity, but is integrated in its external environment, to which it permanently reports itself.
One can speak so about the existence of an interactive marketing inside a company, that makes the relation between customer and provider to be the center of attention of the actions done by the firm; this type of marketing confers amplitude and openness towards the market to the firm’s internal marketing; more so than in selling goods, in case of the marketing applied in services, the accent is posed on this relationship between the quality of the process and the satisfaction received by the customer, the role of the human resource being reflected in the internal marketing of the company, while the relationship established between the company and the customer is reflected in the interactive marketing.
The interactive marketing must not be confused with the exterior marketing, that realizes the communication between the company and its environment by perceiving tariffs and prices, by distribution and promotion of any type, by the connections established with the market. In services, there are taken into account the abilities of the human resource as the main factor of the process; one is not solely interested in the taste of the food in a restaurant, but also on the manner of the serving, by getting attention and importance, the interaction between those that benefit from services and those that provide them is extremely strong.
The traditional optics of the marketing, that integrates the marketing activities at a certain department of the firm and a certain level, takes as a result complex forms, manifested on three coordinates:
Internal marketing, extended on the level of the entire personnel, that will have to learn the politics of the company, the culture of the organization they are part of, no matter of the level they are on, doing everything possible so that their physical and intellectual efforts rise to the expectations of the customers.
The motivation of the personnel takes a very important role, being the one that could make the employees to give maximum efforts, to be loyal to the company and its aspirations. The marketing optics of the company will have to acquired by all its employees, constituted by the human resources, part of the personnel, considered in this optics as an element of the marketing mix.
External or classic marketing, that orientates the efforts of the company towards its exterior, helping it to produce in relation to the demand, to ask for certain tariffs, prices of commissions for the offered packages of products and services, to realize their distribution on markets and to promote them; all the external marketing has control over the market researches done through various qualitative, quantitative or experimental market studies, with the purpose of determining the stimuli to which it will react.
The image of an organization, the manner in which it is perceived by the public is linked to the place where it is known, the space chosen for the interaction with the customers, the covered market area, the impact of the general environment created around its offer, that is all we can encompass in the place of the company, as a self existing element inside the marketing mix.
Interactive marketing, that puts in the focus of its activity, the ability of the staff to provide services for the buyers, both in terms of their technical quality, which includes the contribution of the product offered in the package of services to the satisfaction received by the consumer, but also the final result of consuming the service itself: it was successful or not, it had the desired effect, the final purpose was achieved, etc., but also the sensation the consumer gets with that service: did he get attention, the personnel was interested by its wishes, did they inspire trust, credibility, the customer has been made loyal or not?
Finally, the contact personnel is the one that gives the image of the company, the quality of its activity on the first interaction with the customer fives the general image perceived by the customer.
So, the interactive marketing makes the connection between the internal marketing, represented by the employees of the company and the external marketing, represented by the customers. If the goods provided by the company in this interactive process, from creation to production and selling, are not accompanied by quality services, with the purpose to motivate its own employees and satisfy them until they are loyal, the impact of this process would not be accomplished and marketing would remain closed in its own rules and principles, that are not always clear about the evolution of modern selling-buying processes.
For this reason, the process, the service as such, takes its place, well deserved, among the elements of the marketing mix, broadening the area of action and applicability of this science, that in essence remains an art, an ensemble of practical activities and study domain.