What do the following words have in common? Fare, dues, tuition, interest, rent, and fee. The answer is that each of these is a term used to describe what one must pay to acquire benefits from another party. More commonly, most people simply use the word price to indicate what it costs to acquire a product.
The pricing decision is a critical one for most marketers, yet the amount of attention given to this key area is often much less than is given to other marketing decisions. One reason for the lack of attention is that many believe price setting is a mechanical process requiring the marketer to utilize financial tools, such as spreadsheets, to build their case for setting price levels. While financial tools are widely used to assist in setting price, marketers must consider many other factors when arriving at the price for which their product will sell.
In this part of our highly detailed Principles of Marketing Tutorials we begin a two-part discussion of the fourth marketing mix variable – price. For some marketers more time is spent agonizing over price than any other marketing decision. In this tutorial we look at why price is important and what factors influence the pricing decision.