When asked what “marketing” means, most educators (and most people, for that matter), believe marketing is simply about getting the word out about their school—in the form of public relations or advertising. Marketers, however, understand marketing encompasses so much more. The Marketing Mix includes Product, Price, Place and Promotion. The term was first coined in 1964 by Harvard marketing professor Neil Borden, who credited Professor James Culliton with describing the marketing executive as a “mixer of ingredients” (Borden, 1984, p. 7). As Borden explains, the competitive and environmental circumstances facing an organization are ever changing. Management can respond in a number of ways, including developing products, expanding distribution outlets, changing pricing procedures, or utilizing aggressive promotions. While these may be day-to-day responses, the overall strategy represents the organization’s Marketing Mix.
Strategic planning for products or services encompasses three areas: planning for new products, managing strategies for existing successful products, and developing programs for unsuccessful products (Cravens, 1994). Organizations must put in place systems for gauging a product’s performance. Performance can be measured in both a financial and nonfinancial manner. Financial metrics include revenues, costs and profit. Non-financial assessments include such things as customer awareness and satisfaction measurements. From a marketing perspective, financial measurements that make sense for schools include enrollment and costs. From a non-financial standpoint, there are many measures a special education program could use to its competitive advantage--- parental satisfaction survey ...
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...ore any promotion activities or integrated marketing communication can be executed. Building any marketing campaign begins with understanding the needs and wants of students with disabilities and their parents and assembling a marketing mix geared at promotion that will motivate them. Some organizations waste time and resources creating products and services, with no regard for consumers’ needs or whether the product would be desired. They then attempt to “market” the product through a series of tired communication methods that do not reach the intended audience and, when all of this fails, they throw even more money trying to push a product customers didn’t want in the first place. Leaving marketing communication to pick up the slack of a poorly conceived product concept is like using a coat of paint to cover up cracks in the wall. It won’t take care of the problem.
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