Let’s analyze one of the most popular concept the MBA in marketing
4 Ps of marketing (Taught in MBA)
Here is why this model is very ineffective
4 Ps of Marketing
|1. Product||Knowing your product isn’t enough until you understand the problem of your client and the effect of the issue on the business & existing competitors.
(very important to position and price the product)
|2. Price||You cannot define the price of the product if you don’t know the impact your product will deliver. A fixed price thing will work for a product like gum but not for the modern product category (ie: Multi-tiered products, Dynamic pricing)|
|3. Place||Again, good for a product like gum but when you talk about any tech products, you have to be very specific and clear on targeting, qualification and offers.|
|4. Promotion||Promotion isn’t enough until you really understand the problem and approach the audience in a different way.|
These 4Ps concepts is taught in a boring class as a syllabus, not really in a business environment. There should be a thrill in learning this by doing it, not by reading book, , or remembering answers to get more marks.
The goal of marketing should be to achieve the goal of the company not reading 7 years old business case studies.
- the television news industry is dying because people now find content faster on the internet than a traditional channel
- People in the future, or at least the smart people in the future will prefer to “learn by doing” a business than spend 24 lakhs+ of an MBA that delivers an old concept.
24 lakhs + 2 years time is a freaking good amount of money to start a DM agency and work with the CEO, CFO, and CMO of companies than spending on a useless degree that shared a 7-year-old case study and business practices.
What will you be able to do with this resource (24 lakhs + 2 years + general expenses)?
Possibility 1: Do a basic digital marketing course from udemy, Start a blog (4K INR, Learn to configure a site, design a site, write content, do SEO, do Social Media, run ads and management)
Possibility 2: Work as an intern in a small marketing agency (No expenses, if needed, work for a small stipend but work on many projects)
Possibility 3: Start a digital marketing agency (5-10K, do as consultant, or individual or a PVT LTD)
Possibility 4: Do freelancing
Possibility 5: Start and fail in 10-15 businesses in a row (each costing around 1-2L each)
I have personally done 1, 2, 3, and 4. I am doing 5, 1 one and the 3rd one is running successfully. 2nd one we closed because we didn’t like the business model.
Anyway, As per my experience with several hundreds of MBAs I have met and worked with, I feel that experience can only be achieved by doing and not in the classroom with a boring lecturer with an old case study.
Big joke on IIMs in the country
- Finance with Sharan (Respect for the guy)
The new 7Ps cover almost everything
This 7P definition is written me based on my experience. This is the way we (marketers) understand a product, and create a marketing strategy. 4Ps don’t work because it doesn’t give enough context.
This new approach is being presented with my 7 years of experience in marketing and almost 16 years of experience in doing business.
1. P: Problem
The problem you are solving should be very clear to the whole marketing team before even starting to use your product.
2. P: Product
There isn’t much issue with the product but the product colleges talk about in MBA is often quite away from the industry. Which MBA college really talks about SaaS, multi-tiered audiences, personalized marketing, and conversational marketing efficiency? I have no one.
3. P: People
Rather than giving a single name “People“, it should rather be called “Audience“. The audience covers everything, a solopreneur, a startup, an SMB, or a big enterprise. This wording, by definition and targeting, allows you to define age, interest, location, and multiple different data points.
A product can target different categories or people. Different type
Example: AWS does this amazingly to sell their cloud platform (From nonprofit to enterprise companies, big cloud promotional events, industry-specific events, to hiring startup business associates to promote in startups)
4. P: Price
The price of the product can be personalized from company to company. An MNC can pay enterprise pricing but a startup may not be able to use the same product. The new layer of price in the SaaS market will be on per user basis and there will be a reduction in plans focusing on flat monthly charges.
5. P: Promotion
The promotion has now become cheaper, audience targeting has become quite more effective compared to traditional marketing having one-way broadcasting(Radio, TV, Podcast) and etc.
6. P: Personalization
Personalization is the new game of targeting. Of course, there are businesses that are doing this thing offline without doing personalization but now data is now becoming the oil for business.
From having a machine learning algorithm analyzing the meeting wordings to upsell service to a big sports brand doing secret conversation recoding for connection building, everything is becoming more and more personalized.
It’s quite funny though,
Everyone is busy fulfilling their own purposes, People like to build connections with people whom they like, and businesses like to build connections with people having money. The very typical American way!
7. P: Persistentncy (Innovation, Implementation, Inspiration, Independence)
Cracking an audience will be tough but you have to find a way to get them. Find out where your users spend their time, find a way to get there and try to get in the convo organically, or run ads with sense with the right message.
- Innovation: Innovation will be the key to your business and your marketing will not work if the product is outdated (ie: AMD now wins over Intel)
See: How companies like TATA, HERO, SAP, and GOOGLE are cutting costs on R&D with crowdsourced research?
- Implementation: Implementation of researched tech in your product will be key. Do ABC tests before a major release.
- Inspiration: Inspiration is the word big businesses and corporate use to steal others’ work shamelessly. If you are a company that thinks your competitor has researched a groundbreaking feature that will game up the product. Feel free to get inspired.
Example 1: Youtube got inspired from TikTok and built the exact feature TikTok has (2021-2022)
Example 2: Facebook copied Snapchat’s most popular story feature and a lot of people moved to insta(2016)
Example 3: When Clubhouse became famous, Twitter research space, LinkedIn released voice
- Independence: While platform integration sounds cool, any tech company can pull its tech stack off anytime. Make sure your business stands independently, if it doesn’t, build a plan and reduce the independence. The only thing you can do it to scale to profit, have a runway and remain diversified.
Example of Busines that lost customers due to monopoly
1. Huawei got banned in the OS, Although they came up with Harmony OS with a new play store, it didn’t work.
2. I personally had to fire 23 people ina s single day because Google changed its algorithm, and our traffic went down for the site by 70%.A business always cannot control this, the government should not allow a business to have more than 25% market share but it can try it’s best to diversify itself. In my case, when we had money from an affiliate, (we started an edtech institute) but we didn’t like and closed it. Now we are building mixcommerce because we don’t want to remain dependent on a single company that controls our bread. It will surely take time but it will be a good move in the long term.
|Name||Description (read the above context)|
|7. Persistently (4 Is of business)|
MBA is useful if you want to have a title when you get married(which happens in India), and likely work in an organization that has limited resource allocation and cares about MBA but if you want to experience and do things on a scale, the best way to do is
- “read/see the real case study”
- “Start doing, Start a blog”,
- “Join a community”
- “bet persistently to grow the site”,
- “continue experimenting in 20% of your time”
- ” be active and learn from the community”
This process will allow you to do the things, learn while doing and fail to make it successful. People underrate this power and end up doing an MBA and lose the execution that improves marketing ROI.
MBA colleges will never be able to compete with the current trends and practices in the industry. In fact, The 4Ps concept that is often thought about in MBA has become less effective.
In MBA you learn things, pass exams, join a company on an associate level, and likely never apply things after you learn. This happens in almost 99.9% of cases.
Once you are in corporate, your learning starts from very basic, likely a marketing intern, and then goes through multiple layers of the corporate ladder, and not to be forgotten “office politics” which kills productivity.
Once you are out of your golden time (out of college to getting married), you will have very less time to focus on skills and scale. You will likely remain focused on the general office work and spend most of your time with your family.
Therefore, I would any day suggest any one of the above options (learning by doing) over spending the golden time on a silly MBA.
In the end, You will have experience in starting from scratch and even if you fail, the growth-focused interviewer will respect you for your effort and startup founders, digital marketing agencies, and marketing managers will choose you over a fresh graduate out of an MBA college.