Almost everything that we come across in our daily

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Almost everything that we come across in our daily life if product this course material on marketing management is a product; Financial Express news paper is a product; Reynolds ball point pen is a product; a bottle of Kissan’s orange squash, a tin of complan, a close-up tooth paste, a Margo soap, a packet of surf, a ONDIA TV set they are all products. All of them have some utility behind them, all of them cater to and satisfy some needs of some people. So, in simple terms, we can define a product as a ‘need satisfying entity’. A product is something more than a mere physical commodity. It has a personality. Products carry certain meaning with them and project certain distinctive image. These meanings and images arise out of the many components that take up the total product personality. The major components are: i. The core or the basic constituent ii. The associated features iii. The brand name iv. The package and v. The label IMPORTANCE OF THE PRODUCT A firm is not selling a product. It sells only the “Product benefit”. Product is the most important variable in the marketing mix of a firm. Any firm is floated to manufacture and sell a product. If the product is sound and easily acceptable to the market, if it satisfies reseller’s needs and consumer preferences and is carefully fitted to the needs and desires of the customers, sales success is assured. In essence, the right product is a great stimulus to sales. A right product is bound to reduce considerably the problems of pricing, promotion and distribution. It need not have aggressive advertising and high pressure salesmanship. It may not demand extra-ordinary sales promotion gimmicks. H ence ‘product’ is the centre of all Annamalai University
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74 marketing policies and decisions. The marketing planning begins with the product and also ends with the product. So product decisions are the most important decisions. PRODUCT CLASSIFICATION It is evident that ‘product’ has been undergoing a constant change and the marketing man has been constantly engaged in enriching his product offer. In his attempt to score over competition, he has been bringing out refinements upon refinements on his basic product offer but managing the product was becoming more and more difficult. He had to take the ‘product’ to higher and higher levels of evolution such as: the generic product the branded product the differential product the customized product the augmented product the potential product THE GENERIC PRODUCT AND THE BRANDED PRODUCT The generic product is an unbranded and undifferentiated commodity like rice, bread, flour or cloth. The branded product ge ts an identity through a ‘name’. Spencer bread and Modern bread are branded products. The marketing implications of ‘the Brand’ has already been dealt with earlier in detail.
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