St. Patrick's College Unit 4 Marketing Principles

This St. Patricks College marketing principles assignment solution is common for the HND/C Business courses.

OutcomesOn successful completion of this unit a learner will:Assessment requirements for PassTo achieve each outcome a learner must demonstrate the ability to:
LO1 Understand the concept and process of marketing1.1 explain the various elements of the marketing Planning and process1.2 evaluate the benefits and costs of a marketing orientation for a selected organisation
LO2 Be able to use the concepts of segmentation, targeting and positioning2.1 show macro and micro environmental factors which influence marketing decisions2.2 propose segmentation criteria to be used for products in different markets 2.3 choose a targeting strategy for a selected product/service 2.4 demonstrate how buyer behaviour affects marketing activities in different buying situations 2.5 propose new positioning for a selected product/service
LO3 Understand the individual elements of the extended marketing mix3.1 explain how products are developed to sustain competitive advantage3.2 explain how distribution is arranged to provide customer convenience 3.3 explain how prices are set to reflect an organisation’s objectives and market conditions 3.4 illustrate how promotional activity is integrated to achieve marketing objectives 3.5 analyse the additional elements of the extended marketing mix
LO4 Be able to use the marketing mix in different contexts4.1 plan marketing mixes for two different segments in consumer markets4.2 illustrate differences in marketing products and services to businesses rather than consumers 4.3 show how and why international marketing differs from domestic marketing.
Task 1

Considering the above two definitions of Marketing and applying them to any Organisation which markets products and services:

(a) Describe the main activities Marketing covers.

(b) Examine the concepts and orientations Organisations can adopt to serve the market, clearly highlighting the costs and benefits a marketing orientation. (AC1.2)

(c) Explain and discuss the importance of each one of the four Ps of the product marketing

mix. (AC3.2, AC3.3, AC3.4)

(d) Explain and discuss the importance of each one of the three additional Ps of the service

marketing mix. (AC3.5)

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Task 2

A local business club has invited you to give a presentation on diverse topics related to Marketing. Using an Organisation of your choice, make a set of notes that develop and discuss the following:(a) Segmentation, giving examples of segmentation criteria that can be used for products or services in different markets. (AC2.2)

(b) Targeting, giving examples of targeting strategies and applying one of them to a selected product/service of your choice. (AC2.3)

(c) Positioning and how Marketers can propose new positioning for a given product/service. (AC2.5)

(d) Buying behavior and how it affects marketing activities in different buying situations.(AC2.4)

(e) how consumer buying behavior differs from business buying behavior.(AC4.2)

(f) how Marketers would plan the marketing mix for two different segments in consumer markets.(AC4.1)

Task 3
Sainsbury’s is a major company that has been successfully operating in the UK for years. The company has a balanced portfolio of products and services Given the high level of competition on the UK market, Sainsbury’s has decided to expand its international market. You have been appointed as Consultant to advise the Board of Sainsbury’s on some aspects relating to this international expansion program.
Tasks Write a report to the Chairman of the company, which will (a) Discuss how and why international marketing differs from domestic marketing(AC4.3) (b) Analyse the key ‘microbusiness environmental’ factors that Sainsbury’s will have to consider as it tries to expand internationally.(AC2.1) (c) Analyse the key ‘macro environmental’ factors that Sainsbury’s will have to consider as it tries to expand internationally. (AC2.1) (d) Explain competitive advantage and how Sainsbury will develop new products to help sustain competitive advantage (AC3.1) (e) Examine key elements of the Marketing Process Sainsbury should follow for its successful expansion. (AC1.1)
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Task 1

Marketing Strategy

Marketing is the very important department of any organization. Identifying the prospect customers for the company and then converting these leads in to permanent customer of your company is called marketing. It also includes satisfying your customer by fulfilling their needs. Sales team is the part of marketing department. Sales team is the one which directly interact with the client and marketing team makes various strategies like promotion, campaigns etc. The marketing process and issues in marketing can be explained in following steps:

  • Analyze Customer
  • Analyze Market
  • Analyze Competition
  • Research Distribution
  • Define Marketing Mix
  • Financial Analysis
  • Review and Revise

Analyze Customer –We will be selling our product to the customer. So we need to understand the need and nature of the customer. We need to do right segmentation. Wrong segmentation can lead to the total waste of marketing strategy. Market research should be done to know the customer properly.

Analyze Market – We need to analyze the market to make our marketing strategy successful. We need to find out the total market potential, how much share we can capture, what can be market growth etc. We can use historic data from the sales of other companies. To analyze the market also we need to do market research.

Analyze Competition –We will be competing with other companies so we need to know about them. We need to know about the strength and weaknesses of our competitors. We also should know about the growth, revenue and profit of our competitors so that we can make proper strategies to deal with them.

Research Distribution –We need to find out the distribution methods of our product. We need to select some dealers for our product. We need to decide either we will open our own stores or we will sell our product to already existed dealers in the market.

Define Marketing Mix –If the company is selling a physical product 4 Ps (Product, Place, Promotion and Price) should be clearly known to the whole marketing team and if the company is in the service sector other 3 Ps (Physical Evidence, People and process) should also be understood by the whole team.

Financial Analysis –This part can create very big issue. A small mistake in cost and profit analysis will lead to major loss to the company.

Review and revise –After all the steps we need to look at them once again from the perspective of the customer and try to find out the faults and remove the faults.

Market Orientation

The actual implementation of all the business strategies for marketing we have made for our product or service is called market orientation. Putting a proper focus on the product or service we are going to launch is also part of market orientation. Coordination with all the individuals and departments of the company is very important to implement your marketing strategy successfully. The organization should be such that all the employees are committed towards the better benefits to the customer. They need to improve the quality of their product then only customer will be loyal to the company. Providing superior value to the customer should be the main focus of the marketers (Narver, 1990).

Marketing orientation is the effort of the marketers in providing value to the customer. It can be measured by Cost-Benefit analysis.

When we launch a new project like launching a new product in the market we need to do the complete cost benefit analysis. In cost benefit analysis we compare all the costs with the benefits which we will get after launching this product in specific period of time and then we subtract all the costs from the benefits and find out the profit. If we will get good margin according to our expectations then it means that our marketing orientation was successful and we can continue with the project.

Let us take an example of Software Company like Accenture limited. It has launched a new product and wants to sell this product in the market. To check if the price it has set for the product is right or wrong it needs to do cost benefit analysis. Under cost we need to note down all the points which are leading to some spending by the company and under benefits we will note down all the monetary and non-monetary benefits.

Costs – Company needs an office space to make the project. Employee’s salary will also be included in the cost. PCs, phones and other materials which company is providing to employees will also add to the cost. We need to go to the client location. Travel cost will also be included. Maintenance of the software will also need money. And there will also be some intangible costs like noise, stress, health etc.

Benefits – The revenue we will generate from selling this product in the specific period of time, Satisfaction of the employees, satisfaction and loyalty of the customer, time saved by the company by using our software and benefits to all the stakeholders will be the parts of the benefit.

After noting down all the points if we feel that we are getting good profit and we are getting all non-tangible benefits also then it means that we are successful in our marketing strategies.

Task 2


It is defined as the marketing strategy which is used by the organizations to divide the whole set of customers into smaller subsets based on some criteria. The criteria can be the place from where the customer comes or age of the customers. It can also be done on the basis of the needs of the customers. Segmentation can be done on the basis of following categories.

  • Demographics segmentation
  • Geographic segmentation
  • Psychographic segmentation
  • Behavioral segmentation

Demographic segmentation includes dividing customers on the basis of their personal properties like Age, race, gender, marital status, occupation, education and income. Geographic segmentation is dividing customer on the basis of region where he lives. If we divide segments on the basis of interests and activities then it is called psychographic segmentation and behavioral segmentation is dividing customers on the basis of price sensitivity, brand loyalty and benefits sought (WEDEL, 2000).

Segmentation makes the job of marketers in a company easy. They can target the segment with proper strategies. We can have separate teams for specific segments. It also reduces the cost of the company in chasing its targets. Better strategies can be made for all segments. For e.g. FedEx Corp. has divided its segments on the basis of region and India is one of the segments. They cannot use the same strategies which they are using in any other country for India but they need to have marketers who understand this market and make strategies on the basis of behavior of Indian Market.

Let us take an example of a company and discuss about its segmentation. An auto manufacture company like Maruti Suzuki does segmentation on the basis of Age group and Income of the customer. Depending upon the income group there are different products with different prices. They also divide markets on the basis of country. For India they need to make cars with different specifications like in India steering is at the right side.

Targeting strategies

The selection of potential customers whom we want to sell our products or services is called targeting. After segmentation we need to see which segments we can target and which segments will be beneficial for us. Choosing those segments is called targeting. And we also determine which product will be better for the chosen target group. A company which is producing lots of products will have many target market depending upon the product. For e.g. for Samsung one target market is youth whom they are providing laptops and other target market is offices and other companies whom they will be giving desktops (Moschis, 1997).

I will explain it with one more example of AMUL limited which is famous milk Vendor Company in India. AMUL mainly targets people in the semi urban and urban areas. In the rural areas milk market is still largely unorganized. It targets all age groups of people. It is specially targeting youth by their value propositions of zero fat and cholesterol in the slim and trim milk variety. It has also placed its milk parlors in strategic locations like IIMA, Infosys technologies (Bangalore, Mysore and Pune) and such to attract the youth. There is a large population in India which is growing health conscious and AMUL targets this segment also.

Positioning Strategies

Positioning is the way by which the organizations want to create a different impression of their product on the customer. How the organization wants the customer to perceive its product is another definition of positioning (DiMingo,1988). Positioning also depends upon the target market. Each target market has different needs, thinking and mind set. So, we need to position our product in such a way that they can find some benefits for themselves. This thing also I will explain by taking example of AMUL in India and will show how they using this strategy.

  • AMUL’s tag line says ‘The taste of India’. It is thus positioning itself as a pan India brand. The AMUL milk available in pouch packs is being positioned as the most hygienic milk in the market.
  • AMUL Gold milk is being positioned as milk from which no qualities are removed. It is positioned as milk for children and occasions where sweet dishes are made.
  • AMUL Lite milk is being positioned as offering all the goodness of milk sans the fat and cholesterol.
  • AMUL Shakti toned milk is being positioned as multipurpose milk.
  • AMUL Calci+ milk is being positioned as milk that provides benefits to women. It is conveying the message that calcium is essential for all age groups and especially for women.

Buyer behavior

Buyer behavior plays a very important role in determining the marketing strategies which a company will use to attract the customer. We need to do a survey and find out buyers need and behavior and then on the basis of that we need to decide on the features and offerings of our product (Howard, 1969). With the help of market research and questionnaires we can decide on the customer behavior and plan our strategies according to that.

Our social media campaigns are dependent on the behavior of the customer. If we have a customer who has Facebook account or twitter account and we are following the type of activities he is doing on these social networking sites. Company can interact with the customer on these sites and if we are launching a new product we can have instant reaction of the customer about that product and we can decide on our advertising strategies.

Pricing strategies also depend upon the behavior of the customer. If we have a loyal customer we will try to give more discounts to that customer. We can find out the budget and income group of our target customer and on the basis of that we can change our pricing policies and can set a price which our potential customer can afford. To repeat customers we can think of special offers and loyalty programs.

Marketing mix strategies

Marketing mix is a tool which is used by companies to market their products. If the company is a product company the 4 Ps marketing mix is applicable to the company. The 4 Ps are Product, Price, Promotion and the Place. And if the company is into service sector then we have three more Ps in addition to the 4 Ps and these are People, process and physical evidence.

The Market mix tool will surely be different on different segments. It depends on what basis we have selected the segment. If the segment is on the basis of region then place for that segment will be different. If we have selected segments on the basis of Age then our promotion strategy will be different. For e.g. we are selling calcium tablets for everyone but the bottle we will use for different age groups will be different. We will use some cartoon and colorful designs for the bottles of children and the bottles for youth should be stylish and the bottle design for old age people will be simple. We have also seen in the mobile industry that the companies even change and add new features in their mobiles depending upon the location and age group of the target group.

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Task 3

Macroeconomic factors affecting Sainsbury’s international expansion

Sainsbury is the second largest supermarket chain in UK. But the competition is increasing in UK so company wants to enter into other international countries. They are into domestic marketing and domestic marketing is too much different from international marketing. Domestic marketing is very easy as compared to the international marketing because place in which we are operating will be less, we need lesser number of employees and we can focus on one target market but also the profit will be less as we are into lesser number of customers and if we want to expand and increase our revenue and profit we need to go for international marketing. We have to do market research to understand the type of customers in other countries (Borensztein, 1994). Customers are different in different countries which lead to a major difference in domestic and international marketing. We need to have offices in other countries and we need to hire some people from other countries who are well adjusted with the language and culture of that country. We also have to understand the macro-economic factors which will affect our expansion. Sainsbury sells daily use goods in their retail chains so we need to find out per capita income of the country and through which we can find out if the customers of that country can afford our products or not. GDP growth of the country should also be considered while entering into that country. Inflation also plays an important role and which will help us in our pricing strategy. Interest rates in the country we are entering because we might need to take loans from the banks to set up our new stores in the country. All the fiscal and govt. policies set up by the govt. of that country should also be considered. We also need to know about the FDI i.e. foreign direct investment rules in retail sector for that country.

Importance of 4 Ps in international marketing

Sainsbury is entering into other countries and its opening its new stores in the profitable countries. But before entering into any country we have to do complete 4P analysis to find out the possibility of entering into that market (Goi, 2009). This analysis is very important. I will discuss each P separately and will discuss about its importance.

Product –The product is the final thing which a customer will get after spending money. So the product is very important part of marketing mix. We need to focus on the quality of the product to satisfy our customer. There will be other competitors of Sainsbury in other countries who are also selling the same product. We need to give better products to capture the market.

Price –The first which comes in the mind of the customer is the price of the product. If the product is affordable then only customer goes to find out the quality and features of the product. So this is the most important P of marketing mix. Sainsbury has to do the analysis of prices of competitor’s products and initially we need to start with lower prices to attract more and more customers and then after some time we can think of increasing the price to increase the margins.

Place –We need to find out the specific places in the country where we want to enter. We need to select location for our stores in the metro cities and urban areas. We need to know about the population density of different areas in the country.

Promotion –Promotion strategies are very important in attracting the customers. Depending upon the behavior and nature of the customer we need to have different promotional strategies. All the promotional strategies like media campaigns, bill boards etc. should be done in the local language of that country.

Importance of other 3Ps in Marketing Mix

Other 3Ps are applicable to the companies which are providing some intangible service to the customer. Like Hotel industry, Healthcare industry etc. The three Ps of service industry are Process, Physical Evidence and people. These three Ps play a very important role in satisfying the customer and increasing the value given to the customer. Sainsbury also have presence in service sectors like healthcare and banks (Ivy, 2008). We will discuss the importance of 3 Ps of service sector.

People –In any service company customer will get service from the employee. Employee will directly interact to the customer. He will be responsible for satisfaction and non-satisfaction of the customer. So Sainsbury has to hire experienced individuals for its service sector.

Process –There is a proper process of providing the service. For e.g. in airline industry there is a proper process for airhostesses to interact with the clients. The proper process should be taught to the employees. It needs right training before sending employees to interact with the client. A very small mistake can lead to the loss of a customer.

Physical evidence –Physical evidence includes the infrastructure and all the other materials like tables, chairs, cups, walls etc. This thing creates a great impression in the minds of the customer. Sainsbury needs to focus on this thing. Beds, chairs and infrastructure Sainsbury will use in its healthcare sector should be of higher quality.

Competitive advantage by providing better products

Performing better than your competitors is called competitive advantage. You need to have some core competency which cannot be matched by the competitors to get sustainable competitive advantage over your competitors (Barney, 1991). Company needs to follow some strategies to be better than the competitors.

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Product differentiation will be the best strategy to follow. We need to focus on the quality of the product to get advantage. All the daily needs products which we will be selling in our stores should be of the higher quality. We need proper quality management team in our factories to look into this matter. All the raw material used in our factories should be ISO approved. We can also achieve product differentiation by adding new features in our product. We need to increase the performance of our products.

We can work on cost control measures in our manufacturing process to reduce the manufacturing costs. Lesser cost is always one of the best advantages we can have over our customers.

Pricing of our products can also prove us some edge over our customers. If the manufacturing cost is low as compared to the competitors we can sell our products at lesser price and customer will surely and try our brand. And if the quality is also better than competitor, customer will stay with us and will be our loyal customer.

Sustainable competitive advantage can also be achieved by differentiation in the service which we provide. We need to have trained employees who will interact directly with the clients. We will provide all the other small facilities like washroom, water, Air Conditioners etc. in our stores.


Barney, J. (1991). Firm resources and sustained competitive advantage. Journal of management, 17(1), 99-120. Borensztein, E., & Reinhart, C. M. (1994). The macroeconomic determinants of commodity prices. IMF Staff Papers, 41(2), 236-261. DiMingo, E. (1988). The fine art of positioning. The Journal of Business Strategy, 9(2), 34-39. Goi, C. L. (2009). A review of marketing mix: 4Ps or more?. International Journal of Marketing Studies, 1(1), P2. Howard, J. A., & Sheth, J. N. (1969). The theory of buyer behavior (Vol. 14). New York: Wiley. Ivy, J. (2008). A new higher education marketing mix: the 7Ps for MBA marketing. International Journal of Educational Management, 22(4), 288-299. Moschis, G. P., Lee, E., & Mathur, A. (1997). Targeting the mature market: opportunities and challenges. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 14(4), 282-293. Narver, J. C., & Slater, S. F. (1990). The effect of a market orientation on business profitability. The Journal of Marketing, 20-35.

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