Main factors influencing promotion mix has been briefly discussed as under:
1. Type of Product:
Type of product plays an important role in deciding on promotion mix. Product can be categorized in terms of branded products, non-branded products, necessity products, luxury products, new products, etc. All these types of products need different promotional tools. For example, advertising is suitable for the branded and popular products. Personal selling may be fit for non-branded products. Advertising, personal selling, sales promotion and publicity – all four tools – are used for a newly launched product to get a rapid consumer acceptance.
2. Use of Product:
Product may be industrial product, consumable and necessity product, or may be luxurious product that affects selection of promotion tools and media. For example, advertising and sales promotion techniques are widely used for consumer goods while personal selling is used for industrial goods.
3. Complexity of Product:
Product complexity affects selection of promotional tools. Personal selling is more effective for complex, technical, risky, and newly developed products as they need personal explanation and observation. On the other end, advertising is more suitable for simple and easy-handled products.
4. Purchase Quantity and Frequency:
Company should also consider purchase frequency and purchase quantity while deciding on promotion mix. Generally, for frequently purchase product, advertising is used, and for infrequently purchase product, personal selling and sales promotion are preferred. Personal selling and advertising are used for heavy users and light users respectively.
5. Fund Available for Market Promotion:
Financial capacity of company is a vital factor affecting promotion mix. Advertising through television, radio, newspapers and magazines is too costly to bear by financially poor companies while personal selling and sales promotion are comparatively cheaper tools. Even, the company may opt for publicity by highlighting certain commercially significant events.
6. Type of Market:
Type of market or consumer characteristics determine the form of promotion mix. Education, location, income, personality characteristics, knowledge, bargaining capacity, profession, age, sex, etc., are the important factors that affect company’s promotion strategy.
7. Size of Market:
Naturally, in case of a limited market, personal selling is more effective. When market is wide with a large number of buyers, advertising is preferable. Place is also an important issue. Type of message, language of message, type of sales promotion tools, etc., depend on geographical areas.
8. Stage of Product Life Cycle:
Product passes through four stages of its life cycle. Each stage poses different threats and opportunities. Each stage needs separate marketing strategies. Each of the promotional tools has got different degree of suitability with stages of product life cycle.
It can be concluded that, in normal situations:
(1) Advertising, personal selling, and, even, sales promotion are used during the introduction stage. However, advertising is given more priority,
(2) More intensive advertising and sales promotional techniques are used during the second stage,
(3) More rigorous advertising along with personal selling are followed in the third stage, and
(4) Company prefers to curb the expenses in forth stage, and promotional efforts are reduced.
9. Level of Competition:
Promotional efforts are designed according to type and intensity of competition. All promotional tools are aimed at protecting company’s interest against competition. Level of promotional efforts and selection of promotional tools depend on level of competition.
10. Promotional Objectives:
It is the prime factor affecting promotional mix. Different objectives can be achieved by using different tools of promotional mix. If company’s objective is to inform a large number of buyers, advertising is advisable. If company wants to convince limited consumers, it may go for personal selling. Even, when company wants to influence buyers during specific season or occasion, the sales promotion can be used. Some companies use publicity to create or improve brand image and goodwill in the market.
11. Other Factors:
Over and above these factors, there are certain minor factors that affect promotion mix.
These factors may include:
- Price of Product
- Type of Marketing Channel
- Degree of Product Differentiation
- Desire for Market Penetration, etc.
The list of factors stated above is not complete. There may be more factors. Promotional strategy should be formulated only after considering the relevant factors. Marketing manager must be aware of these variables. Note that these factors affect different firms in varying degree depending upon its internal and external marketing environment.