Delivery in day(s): 5
Unit 19 Ethical Issues in Marketing Planning Assignment
Ethical issues in marketing planning assignment study helps in providing insight on the concept of marketing planning. First, the various changing perspectives in marketing planning today have been documented in the form of a report. The organisation Asda’s ability to undertake future marketing activities have been evaluated. The techniques for organisational auditing and determining the external analysis have been analysed. The various methods and techniques involved in new product development has been analysed as well.
A marketing plan has been developed based on the frozen food category of the parent category of grocery in supermarkets in the UK. The pricing policy, distribution and communication mix have been identified as well. This is followed by a report on self reflection on the group tasks. Further, the various barriers to ethical issues marketing planning are discussed and the ways in which they can be overcome has also been provided. The various ethical issues influencing marketing planning has been analysed and an explanation is also given as to why marketing planning is essential in the entire marketing strategic planning process.
Evaluate your chosen organisation’s capability for planning its future marketing activity.
The organisation that is taken into account is Asda.
The planning of future marketing activity of Asda is centred onthe organisation’s mission, value and purpose. The mission includes being the best retailer in Britain by providing value and focusing on customer needs every day. The primary purpose is to remain cost effective for customers on a day to day basis and the main values include laying complete emphasis on customers every day, catering and caring about fellow colleagues on a day to day basis and strive to be the best at all times. (Your.asda.com, 2010)
- Delivery Innovation: Asda can be related to a brand that is niche when it comes to devising means of delivery. Innovation has been given complete priority focusing on developing convenient methods for their customers to collect their products. An instance of innovation in delivery can be provided of that of Asda’s partnership with TfL that would allow customers to pick up their required grocery from tube station while they are on their way back home. Asda has also introduced the ‘Drive through, click and collect’ feature as a new means of delivery.
- Offer: The ‘same day click and collect’ phenomenon can be associated in this case. The same day’s service is implemented in all stores which basically would mean that customers who happen to place their orders before 1 in the afternoon can collect their respective orders post 4 ‘O’ clock on the very same day. Apart from this, Asda also looks to cater to people not living around the vicinity of an Asda store. In this case orders can be placed online and the order can be collected from a business park, store, nearby landmark, etc. Taking these into consideration, Asda can look to enhance their future marketing activities.
- Insight: Developing a proper insight on how customers avail the products can be useful in enhancing their future marketing activity. The innovation in delivery helps in understanding as to how the new means and mechanisms developed by Asda appeals to the customers. Proper understanding can be developed as to what channels of services is adopted by the customers throughout a substantial period of time and that will help in gaining insight and knowledge as to what the future course of actions should be with regards to enhancing the marketing activity in the future.
- Timescale: One of the factors that Asda looks to fulfil in the future is convenience and time saving of the customers. Innovative ideas of changing the shopping experience of people can be developed by considering their daily routine and schedule and also by ensuring them not much time will be lost as a result of them shopping. The dependency on Wal-Mart and its E-commerce fundamentalsmean that Asda always has some or the other developments waiting in the pipeline for implementation. Time can be saved by taking orders online and then getting the products delivered at the store or a nearby location. This would mean a lot of time saved for the customers. (Thomson, 2014)
- Mobile: The business has to be well established by taking into account the peripheries of the smart mobile device in today’s world. An application can be developed and the website can be made more efficient and optimised for meeting the purpose of easy and convenient browsing that customers indulge into while shopping visa e-commerce these days.
Examine the techniques for organisational auditing and for analysing external factors that affect marketing planning
One of the techniques that can be used for organisational auditing includes that of a SWOT analysis. S stands for strengths, W for weakness, O for opportunities and T for threats.
- Strengths & Weakness: For understanding the strengths and the weaknesses, the internal resources of the organisation have to be analysed properly. The levels of resources that the organisation possesses and the ways they are utilised have to be taken into account while determining the strengths and weaknesses. The strengths are those factors that provide distinct advantage and hold the organisation or business in good stead with regards to the competitors. Weaknesses o the other hand isfactors that distinctly diminish the ability and capability of an organisation. (Osita&Justina, 2014)
- Opportunities & Threats: The external environment of a business or organisation is analysed for identifying the opportunities and threats that a business or organisation is subjected to. Opportunities mean the areas or factors that can b enhanced or implemented so that in future, efficiency and productivity can be attained. Threats are factors that the organisation issues warning against as means are adapted to either negate or face the threats. Strengths and weaknesses can be identified from the internal environment but opportunities and threats can be identified from the external environment.
- The external factors can be analysed by taking into account the PEST analysis and Porter’s five forces analysis.
- Political: Policies and guidelines of the government have to be adhered to by very organisation or business. Political factors include employment laws, protection laws of the consumer, regulation pertaining to the environment, tax norms, restrictions on trade practices, etc. The mode of operations of every company has to adhere to these factors. (Free-management-ebooks, 2013)
- Economic: A nation’s inflation rate, tax and exchange rates, excise duties, etc are factors that make up the economic factors. The trends of labour cost, wages, etc have to be adhered to by every organisation in order to achieve operational efficiency.
- Social: The social factors are made up with aspects like levels of employment, distribution of age, social & cultural conventions, rate of growth of population, etc. Another thing that should be considered is the attitude towards environmental and health issues.
- Technological: The impact of the advent of technology is massive and thus the technological factors can be further classified into manufacture and infrastructure. Organisation behaviour that cannot meet the advanced levels of technology often leave a gap which can be fulfilled by a new entrant in terms of a new opportunity.
Porter’s five forces
Porter’s five forces analysis provides effective analysis on determining the competitive power or advantage that an organisation or a business enjoys within a competitive environment. The five forces include the following. (Roy, 2011)
- Bargaining power of suppliers: Denoted how much of an advantage the organisation is at with regards to dealings with the regular suppliers of raw materials, equipments, etc.
- Bargaining power of buyers: This relates to the power or advantage that the buyers have on the products or services of an organisation or business. High bargaining power of buyers means high competition in the market and vice versa.
- Threat of Substitutes: This relates to the substitutes that a product or service might have in the market. For example there can be no alternative for tea but a proper substitute can be coffee.
- Threat of new entry: This relates to the possible threat that might be posed to the existing players in the market from the entry of a new player into the market. An established market will reduce the chances of threat of new entrant and vice versa.
- Competitive Rivalry: This provides a clear indication as to who the competitors in the market are and what are the aspects in which they lead, etc.
Your company is interested in growing their business by developing products and markets. As a result they have asked you to examine techniques for new product development.
The techniques for new product development include the following.
- Generation of Idea: The idea generation stage requires the in-flow of creative ideas and input and a lot of methods can be associated with this stage. Brainstorming, Delphi and focus groups are a few methods that focus on the generation of new ideas. In this stage, recommendations can be provided for qualitative approaches but quantitative validity cannot be ascertained at this stage. In the case of a survey, it has been found that respondentscompete to provide the more innovative ideas his ensures that a lot of creativity is generated through the survey. A peer group then evaluates the ideas generated and implements the ones which are viable and beneficial for the development of the particular product.
- Development of features: This stage involves the identification of features thatmight be of interest to the prospective customers. Importance scales is a method that is traditional in nature and may not demarcate the features efficiently. A simple method involves that of pair wise comparisons but one of the latest methods involve Max-Diff scaling. Max Diff scaling and pairwise comparisons are almost identical with the main exception being that of the fact a total number of more than just two features can be evaluated at a given time and then from each set, the most competent and worthy alternative is chosen. Another method that can b spoken about is the Kano method in which both the positive and the negative aspects of each feature are provided so that one can easily understand as to which are the features that should be present and which are the ones that may be made way with. The last method in this stage is the Self explicated method ratings are provided by respondents on the desirability of each level and of each attribute as well. These are the techniques and methods involved in this stage. (Sambandam, 2009)
- Product Development: In this stage the various features are combined for the objective of building or evaluating the product. The configurator allows the various respondents of the survey to by establishing their ideal product by selecting the required features from the available list of features. The features that are most popular among the majority of respondents are aimed at development for the various market segments. The optimiser is different from that of the configurator in the sense that it allows the respondents to make their respective choices but only from products that are fully formed. The data and information that is generated from the choices are used in developing successive products till the final convergence of the entire of the entire procedure.
- Testing the Product: In this stage the estimation of the interests as a result of the combination of various products and services can be determined with the help of a procedure known as the Conjoint Analysis. It also aids in the effective functioning of market simulations. This is especially important in cases where a strong competition exists in the market. Concept Testing on the other hand is a little different in the sense that it is more restricted and limited than conjoint analysis and is handy in cases when the product is completely developed with the current existence of mostly price related queries. (Sambandam, 2009)
3.1 Write a marketing plan for a product or a service
The product taken into account is ‘Frozen food’ under the Grocery section of the food category in Asda.
- Market Research: The big four brands with regards to grocery in the UK is Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons. All four brands faced decline in grocery sales as on 2015 with Asda performing the worst. Asda’s sales fell from 4385 million pounds in 2014 to 4287 million in 2015 with a percentage change of -2.2% which is the most by any brand. Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons faced a decline percentage of -1%, -0.2% and -1.1% respectively in 2015. (Butler, 2015) However taking the frozen food category into perspective, the market is performing very well in the UK in both the retail and food-service sectors.The retail sector is valued at 5.8 billion pounds and food-service sector is valued at 2.3 billion pounds. The demand is scheduled to grow in the future which means that Asda can aim to improve its grocery share in the market by focusing on an enhanced frozen food product catalogue. (Frozenfoodeurope, 2016)
- Target Market: The target market will be the fast food lovers with emphasis given on the youth contingent of age group of 15-25 years. The people who are single and working can also be targeted owing to their lack of time to prepare something but mainly the target market will be the youth.
- Product: The product that will be concentrated on will be chicken and beef. Chicken will be available in 5 new variants and beef in 5 new variants. They include ready to roast, ready, to grill, ready to bake, ready to boil and ready to heat meat. The idea behind this is to give the customers a wider option by catering to their demands of rich taste in food. The unique selling proposition would be the fact that fat levels will be regulated and no harmful preservatives will be added, thus catering to the health conscious aspect of the modern day customers.
- Competition: The main competitors will include the other big three players in the grocery market that includes brands like Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons. Fair levels of competition may be received from the food service sectors that include restaurants, fast food corners, established chains like McDonalds, etc.
- Mission Statement: “Cater to the entire food community by providing fresh and tasty food but by ensuring the health benefits of the people by regulating the fat content and carbohydrate levels”.
- Market Strategy& Target Media: The main promotion will be done through point of purchase advertising and by advertisements on newspapers, food magazines andhoardings. The online media of the internet should be focused on with promotional messages on social media websites like facebook, twitter, etc. The online food delivery option can be facilitated through the website or with the help of a designated mobile app. Third party endorsements in the form of blogs and tweets may also be handy.
- Pricing: Asda has a habit of cutting prices even on cheap commodities and this has seen a decline in grocery sales. Hence, emphasis will be laid on food quality and the price set will be product oriented. It will be in due contention with the prices of the competitors and each the price will depend on the kind of product purchased. Hence the industry standard pricing will be adopted.
- Positioning: The food lovers today prefer to indulge in food that is tasty but does not hamper their health. This is one of the reasons that fast food chains have started to face problems across the globe. Hence the positioning should be done in such a way that the pseudo physical characteristics like fat content, ingredients, taste, etc are all met satisfactorily.
- Marketing Goals: To increase the sales of the grocery section of Asda by ensuring a rich inflow of revenue through the success of the frozen food category with respect to chicken and beef items. In terms of a figure, the target will be 10% increase in grocery sales at least by the end of November 2017.(Fleischner, 2016)
3.4 Justify recommendations for pricing policy, distribution and communication mix.
- Pricing Policy: The pricing policy adopted will be flexible in nature taking into account environmental factors like competitor actions and the demand curve analysis. Asda has been renowned for cost cutting and making products and services available at a lower cost than competitors and this method had worked for them for a long time but no longer. Cost cutting of cheap products and inability to earn proper revenue as a result of this approach has meant that Asda is facing a decline in sales. Thus the pricing will be product oriented being sold at par with competitor prices but will be subjected to modifications based on the way the demand curve behaves and also by altering the prices following any major alterations made by the competitors.
- Distribution: Various means can be adopted for the process of distribution. Apart from in store purchases, products can be made available for delivery through website purchase or even a mobile app through which customers can get their products delivered at home. Pre order delivery can also be started where a person can pre book his products early in the day and straight away collect and leave from the store in the evening. Locality delivery process can also be adopted which would mean that the products can be pre-ordered and the delivery can be made to nearby locations like post office, shop, etc for customers who live away from an Asda store.These are the various distribution channels that can be taken into consideration.
- Communication Mix: The main promotion will be done through point of purchase advertising and by advertisements on newspapers, food magazines and hoardings. The online media of the internet should be focused on with promotional messages on social media websites like facebook, twitter, etc. The online food delivery option can be facilitated through the website or with the help of a designated mobile app. Third party endorsements in the form of blogs and tweets may also be handy. Sales and marketing promotion can be done in the form of road shows and mall promotions. Press releases can be sourced out for publication in major dailies and magazines to incorporate the fundamentals of public relations.
3.5 Explain how factors affecting the effective implementation of the marketing plan have been taken into account.
- Demographics: The target market has been determined properly in order to deal with the demographics. Mainly the age group of 15-25 years will be targeted as the concept of fast and appealing food sits well with the youth. Another consideration that has been made here is for that percentage of people who are bachelors or unmarried and have to dedicate a major part of the day towards workand hence do not find the time to spend behind cooking. This is how the demographics have been taken care of.
- Economic Conditions: The present levels of inflation in the grocery industry of UK have ensured that the sales ratio has dropped drastically from the year 2014 to 2015. The pricing has been set accordingly by taking into consideration the factor of demand curve analysis. The pricing can be flexible depending on the kind of result and attribute exhibited by the demand curve.
- Competitor analysis: A competitor analysis will help determine all the activities of the main competitors like Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons and the pricing policy has also been set on the pricing policies of the competitors. The cost cutting procedure of Asda has been overlooked and the pricing will be done at the industry standard rates. Also the competition with fast food chains like McDonalds has ensured the adaption of health oriented product development of the customers.
- Market Share: The market share analysis states that the four big giants in the grocery market including Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons all registered drop in sales with Asda being the worst. However, the rise in demand for frozen food established a way for Asda to raise its grocery sales by ensuring revenue generation from frozen food sale.
1.4 Carry out organisational auditing and analysis of external factors that affect marketing planning in a given situation.
The external factors can be analysed by conducting an effective Porter’s 5 forces analysis
- Buyer Bargaining Power: The bargaining power of buyers is high as the cost involved in switching brands is low and close and relevant substitutes are easily available. Another reason is that of the market being highly concentrated and the industry being market driven.
- Supplier Bargaining Power: The bargaining power of suppliers is low as there are many suppliers in the east who are competitive in nature and outsource production. There also exists a chance of backward integration.
- Threat of new entrants: The threat of new entrants into the market can be said to be medium. This is because it is difficult in entering the market because of the involvement of high start-up costs. The number of players already in the market is already plenty and the new entrant has to be or do something exceptional to hog the limelight.
- Threat of substitutes: The threat of substitutes is high as the number of competitors is huge and independent dealers and producers can also provide products to the people at subsidised rates like wholesalers, etc.
- Rivalry: The rivalry is intense as there are plenty of super-market brands in the market like Tesco, Morrison, Waitrose, Sainsbury’s etc. But the most competition can come from cost cutting firms like Aldi&Lidl, wholesalers, etc. Hence the rivalry is always going to be stiff.
You need to reflect on your group work in task 2 and task 5 and assess your learning that you achieved in both. Also state what contributions did you made to the group works.
A lot of learning has been derived from the evaluation of Asda’s capability of planning future marketing activities and from the development of a marketing plan for Asda. Firstly in the case of evaluation of capability, I learnt how Asda can prosper by ensuring that more innovative means of delivery is adopted. The several delivery means cater to different types of customers. For example online delivery caters to those customers who cannot make it to the store for whatever reasons. The same day click and collect makes it possible for collection of pre ordered items from a nearby landmark or location for customers who do not live near an Asda store.
The biggest learning that I derived out of this is that how Asda undertakes different strategies and means in order to retain existing customers as well as devise methods to attract prospective ones. The benefits of offers and customer insights go a long way in understanding the needs and preferences of customers and meeting them successfully. With regards to personal contribution, I contributed by stating the significance that mobile technology and timescales have on customer action and behaviour.
I contributed by ensuring that the group recognises the importance that e-commerce has in today’s day and age and how by tapping the customers using the internet on the mobile, Asda can cater to customers by meeting future marketing activities and ensure that they maintain a favourable level of sales and an efficient inflow of revenue.This was my learning and contribution from task 2.
While developing the marketing plan for Asda, I learnt various aspects about what the things are that needs to be considered while designing a market plan. I learnt how market research vividly describes the present status of the market and in turn makes it easier to develop strategies in order to maintain or alter the current results.
The importance of target market has been recognised by me as it helps in adopting strategies exclusive for that particular target group, in this case the youth of UK who are generally attracted towards the concept of fast food. I learnt how different kinds of promotional tools can be used in order to determine the market strategies. The tools that i learnt about in this case include advertising, public relations, sales promotion, direct marketing, etc. My main contribution in developing the marketing plan included the determination of the pricing policy and also allocating the unique selling proposition.
The Unique selling proposition involved catering to the health aspect of the customers as there is a notion going around the world to promote the suspension of fast food. Thus, the USP was formulated keeping in mind the taste and variation demand of the customers of UK but at the same time also ensuring that the people do not regret themselves after the purchase or consumption of the items by making sure that the products are fat regulated and carbohydrate controlled. Another major factor also included the absence of any preservatives.
The pricing policy was also determined by taking into account the fact that the cost cutting approach of Asdahad meant that their sales in grocery had declined. Thus it was important that a more flexible pricing approach is adopted that would not take into account depreciation of costs but instead rate products at the industry standard with subjection to flexibility based on factors like competitor action, demand curve analysis, etc. This is my learning and primary contribution in the group work with regards to designing a marketing plan for Asda.
Assess the main barriers to marketing planning
The main barriers to marketing planning include the following.
- Tactic/Strategy Confusion: There exists a big confusion between strategies and tactics. The development of a marketing plan can be deeply affected as a result of this confusion. Strategies are pre determined set of actions that are fulfilled by adopting tactics on a smaller scale. The marketing plan and the operating plan can be hampered if the difference between the two is not administered properly. (McDonald, 2009)
- Process/Output Confusion: Another aspect that clearly needs to be identified and defined is the meaning of the word process and output respectively. The process is the procedure that is followed as a norm or otherwise in order to foster productivity and attain organisational goals and objectives.Output refers to the result attained as a result of the process being adhered to and followed.
- Lack of In-depth analysis: During the development of the marketing plan, a lot of in depth analysis should be do in order to accommodate all the factors benefitting the organisation from the marketing plan. One of the main barriers of marketing planning is failure on the part of the management to subject their operations to more enhanced in-depth analysis.(McDonald, 2009)
- Priority: While a marketing plan is being developed, it is very important to segregate between the objectives that are a must to attain and objectives that can be paid attention to later. Thus setting a priority is very significant and one of the main barriers to marketing planning occurs when proper priority has not been set to organisational objectives.
- Lack of knowledge: The degree of skill and knowledge prevailing within an organisation is directly proportional to the competency of the marketing plan. More the skill and knowledge involved, more sound the marketing planning will be and vice versa. Lack of knowledge hence is another common barrier to marketing planning.
Examine how organisations may overcome barriers to marketing planning.
The main barriers to marketing planning can be overcome by using the ‘Ten S’ approach
- Strategy: The development of a strategy is the most essential while developing a marketing plan. Tactics and strategy should not be confused as they are separate entities and one of the primary ways of overcoming barriers is by developing a strategy before tactics.
- Situate: Marketing amidst the organisation operations should be established and this will help in overcoming the barriers as it is important that the fundamentals of marketing are established and common within the organisation.
- Shared: The intrinsic set of values that the concept of marketing contains should be well documented in front of all the employees of the organisation so that the values can be shared among the entire workforce and a better understanding can be facilitated.
- Structure: The overall structure that is prevalent should be understood and taken notice ofand the mode of operations should be designed accordingly. (Salicru, 2013)
- Scan: The environment should be scanned repeatedly until a fair idea is established as to what the environment is surrounding the organisation. Two types of environment are prevalent. They are micro environment and macro environment.
- Summarise: An organisational audit should be carried out as a result of a SWOT analysis and the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats should be determined by summarising the entire audit under the SWOT analysis.
- Skills: The requisite and necessary skills and knowledge that are required should be possessed by the management or by the individuals who are preparing the marketing plan as otherwise a sound marketing plan cannot be achieved.
- Systematise: The approach and the process that is undertaken in order to prepare the marketing plan and attain the organisational objectives should be systematic and organised in nature.
- Sequence: Organisational objectives should be prioritised sequentially with the most important objective scheduled and prioritised for instant attainment followed by objectives of decreasing significance.(Salicru, 2013)
- Style: The culture and style adopted can help to ensure whether a particular barrier can be overcome or not. Adapting a favourable style and culture is mandatory for the workforce of any organisation.
4.1 Explain how ethical issues influence marketing planning
Ethical issues may prevail in market research as well. Invasion of privacy can be committed if the research is not conducted ethically. As a result of this, it may give rise to stereotyping which may lead to results that may not be the most favourable.
The marketing cannot be discriminated in any way with regards to the population within a particular target market. Discrimination made on the grounds of sexual orientation, caste dominance, race & colour, etc can be termed highly unethical.
Promotion & Commercials
The information imparted through advertising campaigns and promotional content should be true and not superficial. Any exaggeration claimed can have detrimental effects on especially the youth as it might influence their behaviour and preferences.
Puns & deceptions
Sometimes the personality of a particular product or service can be altered by using catch-phrases that pose a double meaning that basically sought of lures an individual to ensure that possession of the product or service is made. (Beamish & Ashford, 2012)
4.2 Analyse examples of how organisations respond to ethical issues
Ethical issues or dilemmas are prevalent in every organisation in today’s day and age and proper means should be adopted in order to counter these practices and eradicate them altogether. Before understanding how organisations respond to ethical issues, let us look at what the common types of ethical issues are that are prevalent today at the workplace.
- The dominance and superiority of a senior may sometimes force an individual to undertake steps or action that is unethical in nature.
- Diminished knowledge on understanding the factors that need to be disclosed to the management and the factors that needs to be ignored.
- Disclosure of information for the purpose of public interest.
- Adverse situations leading to an individual adopting unfair and unethical means of trading which might lead to dismissal of the individual. (Gould, 2013)
Organisations can respond to ethical issues in the following ways.
- Provide the necessary guidance and develop ethical resolution frameworks in order to deal with dilemmas by indicating the Dos and Donts.
- Teach the fundamentals of self regulation of behaviour in accordance to the International standard of ethics.
- Develop norms and laws that leads to heavy penalisation of the convicted as this will result in individuals being a little apprehensive before committing a folly.
- Enforce every norm that is proposed with regards to ethics and also inculcate the significance of ethical operations among all the individuals of the organisation. (Gould, 2013)
4.3 Analyse examples of consumer ethics and the effect it has on marketing planning
Here, the examples of consumer ethics are being considered by taking into account the organisation Asda. The various examples of consumer ethics in relevance with Asda include factors like environmental reporting, toxics and pollution, testing of animals, farming in factory, human rights, supply chain management, marketing irresponsibly, supply of arms and military, genetic engineering, political activities and financing in an anti-social way.(Ethicalconsumer.org, 2016)
Let us now consider the various effects that it has on marketing planning.
- Consumers should not engage in claiming any insurance policies that is not authentic and registered. Customers sometimes adopt this theory in order to extract favours from the company by misleading them into policies dealing with insurance. This is a highly unethical practice and thus any false insurance policies should not be claimed.
- The merchandise available at rent in Asda stores should be taken good care of and should be returned in order to escape unethical practices. Customers sometimes can have malicious intentions and as a result can indulge in cheap practices like not returning the merchandise back to the store.
- Emphasis is laid on the security of the customers especially during the promotion of harmful commodities like alcohol, pesticides, etc.
- The content in promotional and advertising activities are regulated in the sense that they are not exaggerated and do not claim anything that is superficial and unrealistic.
- Any modification or changes in strategy or the actuality of proceedings with regards to the company should be shared and levels of clarity should be maintained with all the stakeholders of Asda which includes the customers.
- Respect the privacy of information during the conduction of an effective market research analysis, thus avoiding the aspect of stereo-typing.
These are the examples of consumer ethics and the impact and effect it has on marketing planning.
Why marketing plan is essential in the strategic planning process for an organisation.
One of the most important tools for business is the marketing plan. It determines the prevalence and degree of existence of products and services of a particular market. A marketing plan has four main primary functions that it aims to fulfil.
- Suggests as to what resources are required by the organisation or the business
- Facilitates understanding on what needs to be done
- Provides goals and objectives that are measurable and attainable.
- Ensures that proper ‘homework’ is done by the required people
- Market Research: Effective market research helps in ensuring that the needs and preferences of the current set of customers as well as the future prospective customers are determined along with the relevant demand posed by the individual. Market research can be done in many ways like questionnaires, surveys, etc. (Radford.edu, 2016)
- Market Strategy: When it comes to small organisations and businesses, the competitive advantage can be established over the bigger competitors by adhering to the needs and demands of an individual customer. This can be done determining the marketing mix properly popularly known as the 4Ps of marketing namely Product, Price, Promotion and Place.Small organisations can also focus on being more personal and customised with the customers.
- Target Marketing: Target marketing is very important as it is the only way that a particular segment of people can be attended to. Customer Segmentation refers to the process of identification of people who can be termed as heavy customers and marketing goods and services to them. Product segmentation refers to the identification and marketing of products and services that are best selling in the market for the purpose of gaining effective market share. Geographical segmentation identifies and markets goods and servicespertaining to a particular geographical area.
- Market Mix: The marketing mix needs to be properly prepared and implemented in order to deal with the needs and demands of the various target markets. The marketing mix is also popularly known as the 4 Ps of marketing. Determining the proper marketing mix of a particular segment will ensure that the following factors of product, price, promotion and place has been determined. Place can also be referred to as the distribution process, which means the ways in which the organisation would want to sell the products and services. For example- services of a retailer, wholesaler, etc.(Richter, 2012)
For the above mentioned reasons and valid points, the fundamentals of a marketing plan are very essential for the strategic planning process of an organisation.
From this study we understand the changing perspectives in marketing planning include factors like ad blockers, social media, customer experience model, content, etc. Asda’s evaluation of future marketing capability can be analysed by talking into account the innovation in delivery, offers, customer insight, etc. The technique analysed for an organisational audit include SWOT analysis and the external factors can be analysed through Porter’s 5 forces and PESTEL analysis.
The marketing plan has been developed on frozen food in the grocery section of supermarkets in the UK. The importance of having a flexible price policy has been discussed. The main barriers to marketing planning include Lack of In-depth analysis, Process/Output Confusion, Tactic/Strategy Confusion, etc. The various ethical issues have been analysed that influence marketing planning. Marketing Planning is essential in the overall strategic planning process as it efficiently demarcates the market research, target market, strategy, mix, etc.
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