Marketing is an integral function of a business organization. Its complexity is increasing the present globalised marketplace where the survival of a company has become tougher with numerous companies competing together. To become a leader and beat competition, it is essential for a company to follow the best possible marketing process including proper marketing strategies, market segmentation, choosing the ideal target market, positioning of the product etc. It is also ideal to choose the best marketing mix for each target market so that more customer retention and loyalty can be achieved. This ensures the increase in sales volume and profitability. In this Unit 4 Assignment on Marketing Mix, the case of a office furniture company, Kaffel Ltd is discussed . The company has few stores to serve consumers directly, but also have a strong participation in the industrial market. The marketing process and marketing mix of Kaffel Ltd and how the company can survive in different market segments with the appropriate use of correct marketing mix is highlighted in this report. The customer buying behavior and the differences of marketing mix in the Business to Business marketing (B2B) and Business to Customer (B2C) marketing is another topic of discussion in this Unit 4 Assignment on Marketing Mix.
MarketingConcept:The marketing concept is the theory that organizations ought to break down the needs of their customers and after that settle on choices to fulfill those needs, better than the opposition. Today most firms have embraced the advertising idea, however this has not generally been the case. The advertising idea depends after showcasing examination to characterize business sector fragments, their size, and their needs. To fulfill those needs, the promoting group settles on choices about the controllable parameters of the promoting blend.
Elements of Marketing Process:The process of marketing is a wide concept that is an essential factor needed for the success of any organization. The different types or activities involved in the marketing process are designing of product, fixing prices, forming strategies, advertising, and promotional activities. There has to be a right combination and effective conduct of these activities in order to ensure the best marketing process and business success. All these marketing activities are combined in four key elements of marketing process that are described as below:
- Research: Before the product launch or development, it is essential for a company to analyze the present market situation and how the market trend will have an impact of the company’s products. Market research also include knowing the exact need of the market, the customer preferences, the strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats of both internal and external market situations. This enables the company to select the target market, the positioning of the product etc.
- Strategy:Once the market is analyzed through market research, the next vital step is to frame a good marketing strategy in which the policies and procedures of the conduct of the marketing activities will be identified and planned. The strategic formulation will be on the basis of the SWOT analysis of the company and is linked with the business objectives. Strategy aims to beat the competition and increase customer base and market share (Griffin, 2013).
- Planning: Another major element is market planning. This helps to know the exact goals of the company. Market planning include forecasting sales, financial requirements, Communication strategies, personnel requirements and many other criteria that company wants to achieve in future.
- Tactics: Tactics are the short plans that are framed to grab more customers towards the company’s products, increase the market share, for high profit margin and so on. The effort of the firm in this aspect will be to create some short term objectives and do actions so as to achieve the same. There can be promotional tactics in the seasons like reduction of prices, discounts, offers etc.
Evaluate the benefits and costs of a marketing orientation for Kaffel Ltd.
The relevance of the marketing orientation approach are gaining its visibility in the recent years rather than product oriented approach. In the market oriented approach, the primary motive of the company is to identify the needs and preferences of the customers and to identify the marketing process in such a way that the needs of the customers are fulfilled through the products delivered. The market research, strategic formulation, market planning, product launch and implementation will all based on the customer requirements and preferences.
In order to be customer focused, Kaffel Ltd has to go through three steps. First is to identify and research the customer needs and wants. Second is to study the research output to know where improvements to be done in the current market process. Third is to ensure customer satisfaction through product launch. This approach improves sales volume and profit margin as customers are more satisfied. However, the same involves more cost due to extensive market research. Also, the customer preferences in one area may be different from another and hence, the possibility of meeting all customer needs will be difficult. Also, there can be variations in the customer needs over time and therefore it is not predictable (Fullan, 2014).
Market oriented culture creates a practical competition and, in this way, unrivaled longrun hierarchical execution. In accordance with this thinking specialists broadly have sought after a understanding of the connection between business sector introduction also, execution (Homburg and Pflesser 2000). In spite of some harsh discoveries, these studies have shown that, contingent on ecological conditions and firm variables, market introduction is related decidedly to new item execution. The attention here is on new item advantage, in light of the fact that these item advantages commonly shape the convincing explanations behind clients to purchase the new item, and on the dispatch capability, in light of the fact that the dispatch stage speaks to
SWOT Analysis is a valuable procedure for comprehension Kaffel’s Strengths and Weaknesses, and for distinguishing both the Opportunities open to you and the Threats Kaffel confront. What makes SWOT especially intense is that, with a little thought, it can help the company to reveal opportunities that you are very much set to adventure. Also, by comprehension the shortcomings of the business, Kaffel can oversee and dispense with dangers that would somehow get unawares. More than this, by taking a gander by the company and its rivals utilizing the SWOT system, the company can begin to art a system that helps it to separate from the rivals, so Kaffel can contend effectively in the market.
Macro and Micro environmental factors which influence marketing decisions
The marketing decisions will have a major impact of the market environments, both internal and external environment in which the company survives. There are two types of environmental factors that affect the business. They are micro environment and macro environment
Micro Environment: Micro environment is the internal factors which the company has direct control over the same. These factors influence the marketing decisions of the company as well as marketing strategies. One of the internal factors includes employees. Their work efficiency and performance level determine the successful conduct of the marketing process. Suppliers also impact the business situations as they provide materials to carry out the marketing activities.
Macro Environment:Macro environment include the external factors that the company does not have a direct control on the same, The macro environmental factors are more challenging and subjected to fluctuations frequently. In order to determine the impact o f macro environmental factors, the company has to do PESTEL analysis. This involves the analysis of the factors in which the political factor analysis helps the company to know the state laws and regulations and how it impact the business functioning. The economical factors like financial crisis etc will also affect the business operations of the company. Social factors include the demographic and cultural changes in the country which also affect the business choices and marketing activities. Technological factors include the innovative and latest technological changes also impact the marketing and promotional activities.
At the microeconomic level, for purchaser items as inputs purchaser or purchaser merchandise, the parity is reflected in the size and structure of utilities that you can purchase with the salary accessible, boosting the total of these utilities. The commitment of exchange to guarantee dependability at this level is the manner by which he decides typicality advertise, the presence of an offer relating to volume, structure, place and time the indication of request in such manner.
The second part of the external environment, positions large scale environment fundamental to directing the organization’s action in understanding with the needs of society, he impacted the organization’s shares through a few sorts of practices, for example, purchaser conduct and trade, rivalry and the conduct and position of government. Exchanging organization ought to have the best conceivable impression of the segments on every full scale, on the grounds that some of them are intensely subordinate than others (eg , the monetary environment can’t be isolated from the social or political environment ). Managing ecological elements permit recognition exchanging organization qualities and shortcomings, and to quantify responsiveness and expectation. Since full scale components don’t advance all the while in the same bearing and with the same force, the impacts set off the organization are extraordinary.
Segmentation criteria to be used for products in different markets
Market segmentation is a vital marketing process that the company has to choose according to the product type, business objectives, type of industry, market forces and many other factors. Market segmentation is the classification of markets in to different groups so that the company can able to choose the best market segment and attract customers in the market segment. The selection of the ideal market segment is vital for the success of the marketing strategies and activities to achieve business goals. There are different classifications for market segments. These are geographic, demographic, Psychographic and Behavioral. Demographic segmentation of the market is based on the factors like age, gender, size of the family, income, occupation, Education, religion, race, ethnicity and so on. The customer reaction on the product will be based on the demographic variables. This is one of the widely used segmentations by most of the companies. In the Psychographic segmentation, the company will look in to the values and interests of the customers along with the peculiar personality traits of the customers. This helps the company to know what exactly is to be incorporated in the product features. The behavioral segmentation is based on the response of the customers towards the product launched (Bourne, 2012). The consumer behavior studies are conducted to know the response and feedbacks of the customers towards the products so that the respective improvements can be made in a better manner. Geographic segmentation is a market division in which the market is divided in to different geographical units, areas, city etc. The marketing efforts for each geographic segment will differ from the other and so as its impact.
- Factor segmentation: Factor segmentation is taking into account component examination. The main step is to component break down or structure gatherings of characteristics that express some kind of normal topic. The quantity of components is resolved utilizing a mix of insights and learning of the class. When the quantity of variables has been resolved, every respondent gets a score for each of the variables. Respondents are at that point alloted to the component that has the most elevated score.
- K-means clustering: This technique endeavors to recognize similar groups of respondents taking into account chose attributes. Like most division strategies, k-means grouping obliges that the examiner indicates the sought number of groups or portions. Amid the method the separations of every respondent from the bunch focuses are figured.
- TwoStep Cluster Analysis: The calculation distinguishes groups of cases that show comparative reaction designs. Ordinarily, cases are allocated to the bunch with the closest focus. The expert can determine a clamor rate (cases that try not to fit in with any group), on the other hand. Portion enrollment is at that point dictated by the separation of the respondent to the nearest non-commotion group and to the clamor bunch. Respondents that are closest to the commotion group are viewed as anomaly
B2B and B2C Markets
B2B is depicted as the type of association with the organization as an afterthought of supplier what’s more, another business organization on the client side. This Business Environment Organization could be spoken to by sole merchant, organization. B2B business sector incorporates huge number of exchanges, and is typically more perplexing. Purchasers in B2B and B2C situations settle on choice contrastingly amid the purchasing procedure, as they are every person. All the more regularly, free of the business environment; individuals have a tendency to reason their buys by perusing promotions about their bought substantial or immaterial. This is known as a “subjective discord to “clarify the tension felt by numerous purchasers of lavish things not long after buy. In this way sales representatives reach the client to console them of the right buy and raise the estimation of client experience.
Targeting strategy for a selected product/service
Selecting the target market in which the company wishes to introduce its products will be based on several marketing strategies. The consumer group selection in this way aim for knowing the needs and preferences of the consumers and ensure a better satisfaction level and thereby increase the product sales. Kaffel Ltd can increase the sales of its furniture by applying any one of the three major targeting strategies. This helps Kaffel to know which target market will be suitable and bring more customer base for its furniture products.
Kaffel can either chose the undifferentiated targeting in which the company can chose the entire market as one and there will be no individual segmentations. The customer in the whole market are considered and the product is launched on a large scale. This type of targeting is possible for companies where there are less competition from other industrial players so that there emerges no need to focus any niche or selected target market. The other type of targeting that Kafel can chose is the differentiated targeting. In this target market, the firm can chose many different target markets and apply the marketing techniques according the market research and consumer preferences of that particular market. The product launch may be slightly different in terms of its prices, promotional activities, package etc in different target markets in this scenario (Schaffer, Agusti, & Dhooge, 2014).
The more suitable targeting strategy for a midsized company like Kaffel is the concentrated targeting. Here company can chose a particular niche market and concentrate its marketing efforts only in this market segment. This enables knowing the customer needs in a better manner and thereby increase in sales and profit margin can be achieved easily and effectively.
Organizations can’t position marks in separation; they must be situated relative to one or more contenders. By nature, individuals learn by making correlations.Hence, it’s regular for individuals to create view of one brand that are with respect to different brands. When we say what our brand is, in any case, we additionally infer what our rival is definitely not. When we say what our image is not, we infer what our rival is
Positioning is the measures of a product that makes a place in the customer minds. A better product will be positioned in a better way in the minds of the customers. If the positioning of the product is strong, the customer will be more attracted towards the product that enables customer retention for long run as well as increase in customer loyalty. There are certain aspects for the positioning strategy. It is essential to identify the competitive edges that are possible in the selected target market. This will help the company to know how and when to position the product in the selected target market. When Kaffel Ltd select the target market and position its products, it is now essential for the company to use effective communication and distribution tools to position the products effectively in the market. The positioning of office furniture products for Kaffel will be based on the target market selected. The several marketing tactics and promotional activities can be done by Kaffel to ensure that the products are placed deeply in the minds of the customers. Thereby an increase in the brand image and customer loyalty can be ensured by Kaffel Ltd.
New Product Development for Kaffel
The NPD procedure comprises of the exercises did by Kaffel when creating and dispatching new items. Another item that is presented available advances more than a succession of stages, starting with a beginning item idea or thought that is assessed, created, tried and dispatched available . This grouping of exercises can likewise be seen as a progression of data get-together and assessment stages. As a result, as the new item develops, administration turns out to be progressively more proficient (or less unverifiable) about the item and can evaluate and reassess its beginning choice to embrace improvement or dispatch. Taking after this procedure of data social affair and assessment can prompt enhanced new item choices from firms by constraining the level of danger and minimizing the assets focused on items that in the end fizzle. The NPD procedure varies from industry to industry and from firm to firm.
Buyer behaviour affects marketing activities in different buying situations
Consumer behavior is a vital aspect and it keeps on fluctuating under different market conditions, especially when there are many competitors selling similar products. The increased number of competition confuses the customers to choose the best possible products. Moreover, this will make it difficult t enable customer loyalty for the company’s products. Hence, the study of buying behavior is essential, which has five stages of decision-making process. Recognition of a problem or need is the first stage in which the customer identifies the actual need for him or her to buy a particular product. Once the need is identified, the next stage is to search for information. The details of the products which customer wants to buy will be collected to make a choice. The third stage is the evaluation of various product alternatives and to assess which product is better by comparing them together. The fourth stage is the purchase decision. In this stage, the customers choose the best product from the number of alternatives and decide to buy the product and buy the same. In the last stage of post purchase evaluation, the buyer evaluates whether the selection of the product was a correct decision or not from his personal experiences of using the product.
Describe how the office furniture and other products can be developed to sustain competitive advantage.
Product development is a highly challenging aspect in the complex anc competitive globalised marketplace, where there are numerous competitors as well as different consumer needs and preferences. There has been much technological improvement in the present scenario that drastically changed the consumer needs and wants. The consumers are seen adament in the aspect that they are even ready to wait for the improved products. Hence, it is essential to make a tedious effort on the part of the company to develop the product that ensures sustainability in the competitive world. In order to develop a product that meet a competitive edge include several stages. The first stage is the idea generation. Ideas for new products are searched in a systematic manner. The clear strategy for product development is to be created. Product selection and market selection is done in this stage. The next stage is concept development and testing. The idea generated has to be brought among the target audience in order to know the feasibility and response of the target audience towards the idea. The next step to formulate the marketing strategy and development. The appropriate strategy favorable to the target market and the business objectives are formulated. The next stage is the test marketing, which is done prior to the actual marketing in which the customer response and marketing mix are assessed. After this, the last stage is the commercialization in which the product goes live or the actual product launch takes place.
Product Life cycle
- Introduction stage: This stage includes presenting another and already obscure item to purchasers. Deals are little, the creation procedure is new, and cost decreases through economies of size or the experience bend have not been figured it out. The advancement arrangement is outfitted to familiarizing purchasers with the item. The estimating arrangement is centered around first-time purchasers and alluring them to attempt the item
- Growth stage: In this stage, sales become quickly. Purchasers have get to be familiar with the item and are willing to purchase it. Thus, new purchasers enter the business sector and past purchasers return as rehash purchasers. Creation may need to be increase rapidly and may require a vast mixture of capital and aptitude into the business.
- Maturity stage: In this stage the business gets to be saturated. Productionhas made up for lost time with interest and interest development moderates sharply. There are couple of first-time purchasers. Most purchasers are rehash purchasers. Rivalry gets to be exceptional, prompting forceful special also, valuing projects to catch piece of the overall industry from contenders or just to keep up piece of the overall industry
- Decline stage: In this stage purchasers proceed onward to different items and deals drop. Exceptional contention exists among contenders. Benefits become scarce due to restricted overall revenues also, declining deals. A few organizations leave the industry.
In terms of their distribution, explain how a good distribution arrangement can provide customer convenience for both markets (B2C and B2B
Distribution is of prime relevance with respect to the marketing process. This is linked with the convenience of the customers. Distribution of the product has to be arranged according to the customer convenience. If not, it will result in a reduced customer base due to difficult in product accessibility by the customers. Distribution or place is one of the vital elements in the marketing mix. This will also affect the prices and promotions of the product. Hence, Kaffel has to ensure that it selects the best distribution channel for selling its products. There are three main distribution channels that Kaffel can opt for its products. These are selling to wholesalers, who then sell to retailers or to customers directly. The other option is to sell directly to the customers. This method of distribution gives more profit margins to the company. One of the best distribution method is selling through online which has become possible through e-commerce and internet based advanced technology.
Regarding to their pricing strategy, explain how they could set the prices to reflect Kaffel’s growth objectives, positioning strategy and market conditions
Price of a product is one of the major factors that decide the sales and profitability from a product. It is usual that low price attracts more customers and at times higher price can also attract customers in the same way. It is seen that the customers react faster to eh price changes and hence, it is treated to be the sensitive element of the marketing mix. Hence, it is essential, for the company to frame the best pricing strategy in comparison with the target market, customer buying behavior, competitors prices and many such factors. Pricing of a product is also based on the objective of the company. Sometimes pricing strategies like penetrating pricing will be ineffective wherein the low margin is taken on prices. The fixed and variable costs of the products are also considered while applying prices on the product (Parker, & Bradley, 2000).
Illustrate how promotional activity can be integrated to achieve marketing objectives
Accomplishing an advertising goal obliges an assortment of coordinated methods, and special movement has indispensable impact in that mix. Advancement is one of the supposed four P’s of promoting, the others being item, value and spot. The advancement classification concentrates on techniques a business can use to give data to customers about its items. In particular, advancement includes the procedures of publicizing, individual offering, deals advancement and advertising.
Promotional activities are another integral element of the marketing mix of a company. The ideal and most attractive promotional strategies can grab the attention of the customers more easily. This is a method to convince the customers to buy the company’s product. Product promotional technique involves informing the customers about where, when, what and how a product is available to them including the product prices, specification and features etc. Promotional tools aim to motivate the customers to buy the products and withdraw the competitor’s products. Hence, the impact of the promotional techniques is higher and thus an extensive market research is essential before the implementation of the promotional tools. Promotional tools helps in the increment of the customer loyalty. By getting more customers grabbed to the products through effective promotional techniques, the company will be able to increase its sales volume. Thereby, the profitability and market share of the company will be enhanced. This leads to an increase in the competitive edge among other industrial players (Carroll, & Buchholtz, 2014). Some of the promotional tools are direct marketing, advertising, public relations etc.
Three additional elements of the marketing mix
Marketing mix is the most integral part of a business growth and success. Marketing mix is usually incorporated with the 4ps (Product, Price, Place and Promotion). However, in the recent complex business conditions demand for extended elements in the marketing mix, which was introduced by Booms and Bitner in 1981. The three additional Ps are the following:
- People: People are the vital elements that ensure the success of a marketing process. All the people who are directly or indirectly involved are considered, they are employees and customers. The extend of services provided by the employees as well as the consumer behavioral patterns have a tremendous impact in the designing of a marketing mix.
- Process: This includes the procedures, actions and business operations that is initiated in order to make the marketing strategy effective.
- Physical Evidence: The physical environment that initiates the services are also relevant. The actions that makes the customers aware of the products, the material things like temperature, design, comfort, light, physical appearance of sales person etc also have significant role in the marketing strategy (Nickels, McHugh, & McHugh, 2011).
In this Unit 4 Assignment on Marketing Mix, it is noted that the marketing process is a prominent factor for any business organization so as to ensure a better business success and goodwill through the selling and marketing of its products. In this Unit 4 Assignment on Marketing Mix, the case of a midsized office furniture company, Kaffel Ltd is discussed. The concept of marketing and its vital elements like research, strategy, planning and tactics are necessary to ensure more customers for the products and increased sales volume. Market segmentation, targeting and positioning strategies has to be ideal for different situations which are identified after analyzing business environment. The relevance of marketing mix including Product, Place, Promotion , Price and the additional three Ps are inevitable in the marketing strategic formulation (Obradovi?, Fedajev, & Nikoli?, 2012).
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