Marketing Mix-Place & Promotion Mix

Place mix refers to distribution of products to make them available to buyers for purchase and consumption.  Channels of distribution refers to the route or path along which products flow from the point of production to the point of ultimate consumption or use, consisting of middlemen who facilitate the flow. Channel of distribution helps in:
•    facilitating  exchange of goods and services between buyers and sellers,
•    enhancing the distribution of goods,
•    creating possession, time and place utilities,
•    reducing transaction cost,
•    reducing the burden of producers and
•    providing feedback of consumers.
The functions performed by channels of distribution are sorting, accumulation, allocation, assorting, promotion and risk taking. Two types of channels of distribution are:
•    Direct channel is the channel where the manufacturer directly makes the goods available to the consumers without involving any intermediaries.
•    Indirect channel implies one or more intermediaries to make goods available to the consumers. Indirect channel can further have three levels namely One level channel where only the retailer is available in moving the goods from the manufacturer to the consumers. Two level channel involves two intermediaries wholesalers and retailers. Three level channel involves three intermediaries namely agents, wholesalers and retailers.
Factors determining choice of channels are product related factors, company characteristics, market related, middlemen related and environmental factors. Physical distribution of goods consists of transportation and storage of goods. Components of physical distribution are order processing, transportation, warehousing and inventory control.
Promotion mix refers to the combination of promotional tools which are used by an organisation to achieve its communication objectives. Tools of promotion are advertising, sales promotion, personal selling, public relations and publicity. Functions of promotional activities are providing information, stimulating demand, identification, highlighting utility of product, facing competition and building brand image. Factors influencing promotion mix are nature of market, stages of the product’s life, availability of funds and effectiveness.

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