In marketing 101, one of the first topics you are exposed to is the marketing mix. When I was teaching a marketing essentials course at Missouri University of Science and Technology to future MBA students, we spent an entire lecture on the marketing mix, examining a variety of companies and how their marketing mix influences perspectives.
Lets examine the foundation of the marketing mix, the four P’s.
Product, Price, Place and Promotion.
This is what the customer wants to buy and what you are offering. In our world this translates to CrossFit Classes, Personal Training, CrossFit Endurance, Powerlifting, Olympic Weightlifting, Specialty Seminars, Small Group Classes, Bootcamps, Open Gym, Supplements, Kill Cliff, Nutrition Coaching and/or other products/services that you are offering. Ask yourself this. Are you the one stop shop for all things fitness?Do you have showers? Do you just specialize in CrossFit Classes? What do you do best, what should you focus on? Sometimes by offering too much or too little puts you at a competitive disadvantage. CrossFit punishes the specialist. Is your product too diluted? What benefits are you providing?
Pretty simple concept here. But lets take a look from a potential client’s perspective. So who is your target market? How sensitive to price are they? What are the economics of where you live? Do you have competitors? CrossFit typically demands premium pricing, but if you’re the least expensive box in town, are you watering down the product? Are you communicating that you provide less value? Or is the guy across the street charging too much? I highly recommend when establishing pricing for your services, you compare it to the cost of personal training. Remember, Greg Glassman used to do personal training, only when his business picked up he started doing small group classes.
Most people associate price with value. Focus on communicating your value and you won’t have people questioning your price.
In our business, place is pretty standard. It’s where you are offering your service. I charge higher per hour for those who I have to travel to then I do if I train them in the box. If you’re in the outskirts of town, maybe you can’t get the same pricing as someone that’s downtown. I think about the gyms here in Missouri, CrossFit Central West End may be the most expensive in the state, they also probably have the highest expense per square foot and have a medium income that’s probably one of the highest as well. Compared to Dropping Plates CrossFit in St. Robert, MO where if it weren’t for the military base, there’d be about 17 people in that town. Place has a huge effect on expectations for price and service. Seems pretty simple right?
4P’s = Perception
While this may seem very basic, it’s an important topic to think about. How would you define value? Price + Quality = Value? Why do people pay $60000 for a Mercedes but only $30000 for a Ford Focus? Is the quality that much different? I’d bet it’s not far off(Check out the Ford Focus ST if you don’t think a focus is as good as Mercedes). It’s all about perception.
All of these factors pull and play on each other. When you change one, it effects the perception of your brand to your potential clients. Think about that the next time you discount your services, do a GroupOn, change your hours, offer a new specialty class, build showers, or offer personal training.
Did this article help?
I hope this article got you to think about how your decisions related to the marketing mix affect what your brand is all about. If you have questions or want to discuss further, reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org or comment below!