The marketing mix refers to the basic elements that make marketing campaigns successful. While it is technically a catch phrase, it is also a well laid plan for developing and maintaining a strong marketing presence in the medium preferred.
The marketing mix can be thought of sort of like ingredients. Each ingredient is essential to the final outcome but there is no need to have each ingredient match the quantity of another ingredient. You don't make cookies by adding four cups of sugar and four cups of flour to four cups of salt. Thus, you don't develop a marketing plan with the same emphasis placed on all aspects of the mix.
The basic ingredients of the marketing mix can be divided up as the product, the price, the place, and the promotion. When the product is the most essential ingredient, you may very well place a lot more weight on the product, the promotion, and the place over the price. When the product is so great the price often is left under a blanket so that the consumer will want the product despite an elevated price.
The place, which pretty much refers to how the consumer is going to receive this great product, can be elevated as an ingredient or it can be somewhat muted as an ingredient. Often going hand in hand with the ingredient known as promotion, the place can often play a key element in exciting the consumer.
The promotion is often a very heavy ingredient. You want to promote the goods, to make it seem like the best thing in the whole world, and cause a mad rush on the product through promotion.
Promotion can be straight forward just as it can be a smokescreen to provide an elevated level of need for the product. Promotion can not be the sole element to the marketing mix, but it can often become the most heavily relied on element to build up success.