Unit 5: Distribution and Promotion
Once marketers have identified the right product and determined appropriate pricing, they must decide how to effectively raise awareness and distribute the product. This unit will focus on these decisions. You will learn that distribution is a complex process that involves taking a product through the manufacturing process, shipping to warehouses, distributing to sellers and customers, and taking returned products. Marketers must work with supply chain managers to determine the best method to route products. If marketers expect that sales will be heavier in the northeast than in the west, additional resources will need to be allocated there to meet demand. There are a number of strategies for moving a product through various distribution channels. These vary based on anticipated demand, actual demand, and the competition. Marketers must have a proactive strategy: They cannot sit on inventory and wait for orders because inventory storage is expensive and a lack of sales is disruptive.
The final and arguably most vital aspect of marketing is the actual promotion of the product. This can take for the form of giveaways, competitions, advertising, sales, and anything else a creative manager can think of. Marketers must take a number of aspects into consideration, however.
If you employ a sales staff to promote the product, how do you compensate them? If you pay a commission, how much commission will be paid per unit? Will the sales staff be given discretion on price, or do you want to send a uniform message that the price is locked in? If a new company has limited funds available for advertising campaigns, might they use public relations tactics to gain free media coverage?
These are just a few considerations that marketers must consider. This final unit will provide you with the tools you need to make the best possible promotion decisions.
Completing this unit should take you approximately 11 hours.