Over the years I have noted some elephants in the room of marketing. “Products” is one of them, “transaction” another. If we take them on, seriously, we may get a deeper understanding. The transaction – the heart of business, where products (goods and/or services) are exchanged for money – must be the natural starting-point of all analyses. And Products are what people pay for, nothing else and nothing less. Consequently, “Products” include Place, Promotion and – not the least – Price. This is the natural way buyers, the key actors, perceive them. If you want to run a business doing profitable transactions with buyers, this is how you must see it. Do you realise that marketing only applies to branded products? This is not conventional marketing theory, and this is why marketing has to be re-invented. Read my paper on Value Marketing, and you will see my point.
In all transactions sellers and buyers have the mutual interest of gaining the most. Sellers want the profits of a good price; buyers want the value of the satisfaction of a deal offering not only utility, but also pleasure and pride. In focus of both parties are the products (the goods and/or services) offered, and wanted respectively. Consequently, any normal, deliberate transaction is a case of win-win, with the product as the object of interest. I.e. the full, perceived product including delivery, service, warranties, etc. pays to get access to. Read why the 4Ps have to be succeeded by the transaction equation.
The relation price/value characterizes branded products; price/demand are far from reality for effectively branded products (i.e. goods and/or services). The metaproduct of branded products is limited to their audience, and its valuation is changing with the price. The dynamics of this valuing audience is discussed in the theory of Value Marketing.
The term “metaproduct” was created by Carl Eric Linn, first published in 1985 and subsequently over the years in books and articles in eight languages. A metaproduct is defined as the intangible part of a perceived (branded) product. An often vital part consists of the (potential) buyer’s perception of the brand, but not all of it, as design, price, taste, sound, etc. may offer a considerable contributions to the interpretation of it. The metaproduct corresponds to a metavalue, offering pride and social identity to the buyer/user, and profits to the seller/producer. The value of a brand is what the people in the market think of it, and when they buy a product, the brand value can be a considerable part of its total value. Want to read more?
The consulting company Meta Management AB was established in Stockholm 1986. It was named after the term metaproduct created by Carl Eric Linn in his book The Metaproduct. A metaproduct is the intangible part of any product - primarily branded product - perceived by the potential buyers, sometimes representing a substantial part of its value, including any brand value. The concept and theory of the metaproduct is published in books and articles in eight languages. Want to read more?