Unit 19 Marketing Planning Assignment - GSK

Unit 19 Marketing Planning Assignment - GSK

Unit 19 Marketing Planning Assignment - GSK


Diploma in Business

Unit Number and Title

Unit 19 Marketing Planning Assignment - GSK

QFC Level

Level 5


The marketing planning assignment - GSK is intended to describe marketing plan for the GlaxoSmithKline, UK. They want this marketing plan for one of their newly developed flu vaccine for the old people. Marketing plan involves different activities related to design that are related to the marketing objective of the organization. Along with that, it also attached with the capability of the organization in the changing marketing environment. Marketing planning contains different issues regarding distribution channel, marketing communication strategy, pricing and product lines. Therefore, this marketing plan will help GlaxoSmithKline, UK organization to get advantages over their competitors. Along with that, it will also help the organization to apply fund from the bank.

Task 1:

1.1  Changing perspectives in the marketing planning:

As opined by Jain and Haley (2011), marketing plan is the tool that helps any organization to know everything regarding any organization. It is one of the indicators that show the management of any organization regarding flaws in their plan, help them to succeed with their goals and redefine their direction in one of the new markets. GlaxoSmithKline is one of the British pharmaceutical organizations that were established in the year of 2000 by a merger of SmithKline Beecham and Glaxo Welcome. In the year of 2015, they became the second largest pharmaceutical organization, and it has a primary listing on the London stock exchange. The drug and vaccines of GlaxoSmithKline have earned £21.3 billion with their top selling products like Avodart, augmentin, Lamictal Electra (www.gsk.com. 2016). Their products include vaccines, nutritional products, pharmaceuticals, oral health care medicines, and over the counter medicines. GlaxoSmithKline is facing huge competition from the Pfizer, Novartis, Hoffman La Roche, Merck and Sanofi. Therefore, to get a competitive advantage in the market and to beat those organizations, they need to change their perspectives to implement an effective marketing plan. Therefore, they have redesigned some of their products to retain their old customers and attract new customers. To attract some new customers with new kind of needs, they have introduced flu vaccines for the old people with an affordable pricing strategy to attract all type of customers. GlaxoSmithKline needs to have the different product line with a different design in their appearances so they can maintain high quality in their standard. To make this flu vaccine popular to the customers, it is important for them to undertake aggressive promotion and selling effort and they must communicate their product with their target customers so they can achieve an effective amount of sales.

1.2 Capability of organization to plan their future marketing activity:

Organizational capacity can be defined as their core competence, strengths, weaknesses, synergistic effect, behavior, and resource. As stated by Stone et al. (2012), it represents the capacity of any organization by utilizing their strength to overcome their weaknesses so they can create different opportunities for them in the market.

Capacity planning of any organization involves the determination of current and future needs in the market.

  • Core competence: Uniqueness and creative vaccine and another type of medicines are their core competence.
  • Synergistic effects:They have a good brand image in the market, and they have a huge customer base.
  • Resources and behavior: They have good human resources, physical resources and they have a global network to expand their businesses.


  • Unavailability of the product due to bad distribution channel
  • They do not follow low pricing strategy
  • They have lack of information about their in their website design


  • They have good source of money
  • They have adequate research design resources
  • Loyal audience
  • Well known organization

Uniqueness: After their establishment, they have provided increasing effort to develop their product range and achieve huge success.

From their finance prospects, it is seen that they should control the utilization of their funds with the budget. From their marketing opportunities, it is seen that they should increase their brand awareness and select an active channel to introduce their new product so they can enhance their sales turnover. They should implement an effective lean management and waste reduction techniques to ensure good quality products with profit. They aloes need to update information regarding their new product on their websites so they can enhance their capability to manage information.

1.3 Techniques for organizational auditing and analyzing external factors:

To implement an effective marketing planning, it is important to understand the customers that are comprised of the internal and external environment of the organization.

SWOT analysis:SWOT analysis specifies different objective related to the purpose of any business venture and emphasizes upon various internal factors that affect any business. Identification of the SWOT is important because it helps to plan the future steps of any organization for achieving the objective (. Acronym for SWOT analysis is strength, weakness, opportunity and threat of any business.

PEST analysis: PEST analysis is one of the tools to measure a business and help the management to understand the marker growth or decline. Acronym for PEST analysis is political, economic, socio-cultural and technological factors that are utilized by any business organization to assess the market. It is the part of the external analysis during the conduction of the strategic analysis because it provides a brief overview regarding macro environmental factors.

Porter’s five forces analysis: Porter’s five forces analysis is one of the frameworks that analyze the competition level in any industry, and it also helps to develop a business strategy (. This structure derives five forces to determine the intensity of competitiveness and them attractiveness of any industry.

1.4 Organizational auditing and analyzing marketing audit that affects marketing planning:

SWOT analysis:


  • They have a significant market share so they can invest money in their projects
  • They have high skilled workforce
  • They are the sixth largest pharmaceutical organization in the world
  • They are globally positioned
  • They have good strategy to manage their reputation


  • They have inconsistency of the attractive promotions
  • They do not have sufficient online presence
  • They do not have strong focus in all over the world; they only have focused on UK market
  • High level of dependency only in several products


  • New development of drug
  • licensing


  • rising the cost of the drug
  • side effects of the drugs

External factors: (PEST analysis)

Political factor

Political factors have the huge impact on the pharmaceutical company because it includes contract law, regulation, policies, etc. Health sector of the UK is highly affected by several political events like reform of the NHS by the government, change of the government. However, UK government has started supporting pharmaceutical organization, so GlaxoSmithKline gets an added advantage (John and Martin, 2014).

Economical factor

As a global company, GlaxoSmithKline faces some economical threat from all countries. The economic factors that affect GlaxoSmithKline include the impact of the exchange rate, inflation rate, and the interest rate. They are also affected by the purchasing power and GDP of the organization, but they can get the economic advantage from the developing and emerging markets. The Strong position of the dollar against pound causes a threat for the GlaxoSmithKline.

Socio-cultural factor

Sociocultural factors include management styles, culture, human behaviors. As GlaxoSmithKline is operating in both the developed and developing countries, so this type of factors do not cause any potential threat for them.

Technological factor

Technical factors include the availability of the IT, research facilities, and technology in the market. Therefore, GlaxoSmithKline always takes advantages of these factors because they are enriched with the scientific facilities and technology.


Task 2:

2.1 Main barriers for marketing planning:

A strong marketing strategy is one of the key components of any successful organization. However, sending a forceful message to the customers become confusing and complicated if there is any barrier behind the scenes during making any marketing planning. According to Kamaet al. (2013), a poorly planned marketing as well as communication planning may leave the customers with wrong information regarding any organization. By analyzing SWOT analysis and PEST analysis of GlaxoSmithKline, several barriers of a good marketing plan are as follow:

Failure of cooperation among the different level of management: To make any marketing plan successful, it is important a cooperation among the different department of any organization. For example, if the human resources and the financial departments are not ready to share their information as well as goals and resources, then it may lead to a complete failure of the marketing plan. 

Lack of motivation to implement change:To apply an effective marketing plan in the GlaxoSmithKline, it is important for their stakeholders to be motivated to overcome different threats in the organization so they can grab the opportunities to implement a positive change in the organization.

Lack of adequate skills and knowledge:To make a realistic plan and ideas, it is important to have a sufficient knowledge and expertise among the marketing professionals in GlaxoSmithKline so they can plan for an effective strategy. To make any marketing plan successful, it is important to create a marketing message that should not be isolated from the marketing function.

Customer’s expectation: Customers have a different expectation from any product of any established organization, so the inability to assess the expectation of clients may cause a complete failure of the marketing plan.

Competitor’s strategy and their activity:The marketing plan of the GlaxoSmithKline can be successful if they have the unique strategy and business than their competitors. The Same type of policy and action may cause a complete failure of the marketing plan.

Along with that different organizational barrier like corporate management, behavioral and cognitive imperatives among employees, lack of focus to implement effective procedures and resources may lead to a complete failure of the marketing plan.

2.2 Overcome the barriers for marketing planning:

As stated by McDonald (2014), marketing planning is one of the reasonable series of the events that can lead to the setting of the marketing objective and make an operative plan to achieve them. To make a marketing plan successful, it is important to increase the level of communication among different level of the GlaxoSmithKline. Generating an effective communication among the diverse level of management can upsurge the cooperation and collaboration among employees. It is imperative for the management to be motivated to implement change in an organization because without modification company will not get an effective move by which they can implement an effective strategy to get a competitive advantage over their competitors. It is important for the management to implement effective change marketing strategy to shrink fear or skirmish among employees that may be created during the implementation of change in the organization.

Along with that, it important to implement the different strategy by which skills and knowledge can be developed among the employees. GlaxoSmithKline must arrange some training or workshops to raise skills among their employee. After launching any new products, it is important that the new product must address all of the expectation of the customers. To assess the expectation of the customers, GlaxoSmithKline must arrange a market survey. Any organization can apply different strategy only then if they have a complete knowledge regarding their competitor’s activity and strategy. Therefore, to assess the opponent's strategy and their activity, it is important to implement a survey on the main competitors of them.

Task 3:

3.1 Marketing planning for a product or service:

Total four steps for the marketing plan are as follows:

Goal setting:To introduce any product effectively, it is important to set an appropriate goal. They main goal of GlaxoSmithKline is to be the number one pharmaceutical organization and gain a huge amount of profit by introducing several new products.

Situational review:A marketing audit is a process that identifies internal and external factors that can influence marketing planning of GlaxoSmithKline. It is seen from SWOT and PEST analysis; GlaxoSmithKline has a very good brand image in the market. Along with that, they have huge market share, skilled labor, and good reputation management strategy so they can quickly promote their product in the market.

Strategy formulation:As per Dougherty (2012), strategy formulation includes marketing objective and strategies. Their marketing objective for this new flu vaccine is to promote their product with effectiveness so they can get a huge customer base. To achieve this, they should utilize good promotional channel. Along with that, they need to invest huge resources. Before investing any resources, they must conduct a market research to understand the need of customers.

Monitoring and control:After implementing effective marketing strategy, it is important for them to monitor the overall process so it can be controlled effectively.

3.2 Marketing planning is essential for strategic planning process:

A marketing plan provides different types of information that help the stakeholders to measure the progress and highlight the most effective marketing strategy. As per the viewpoint of Piercy and Morgan (2011), a good marketing plan helps any organization to increase the sales of the product and increase the profit. Several advantages of the effective marketing plan are it helps to focus on the target market; it determines the demand for any product and identifies potential customers for a market. Along with that, it also contributes to generate sufficient profit and identifies competitors so the organization can get a competitive advantage.

A good marketing plan also helps any organization to achieve the objective and capability of the organization to generate different new opportunities for the organization. Therefore, it is very much important to formulate strategic planning process.

3.3 Techniques for new product development:

Development of new product is one of the processes that is designed for the development, test and consider the viability of any new product. This new product development helps any organization to make them distinguish from other organization by launching the different new product. Several steps of new product development of GlaxoSmithKline are:

Idea generation: It is seen from the SWOT analysis that they are suffering from side effects and rising costs of medicines. Therefore, they have planned to develop a flu vaccine with minimized level of side effects, and they have planned to follow lower pricing strategy for that drug.

Idea screening: In this step, they abandoned the unrealistic idea.

Development and testing of concept: After the development of the concept, they have tested their concept so they can understand how feasible their idea is. In this step, they need to conduct a survey of the customers about their view on the medicines.

Development of marketing strategy and product: In this step, GlaxoSmithKline must evaluate the appropriate marketing strategy, and after that, they need to convert their idea into products.

Test marketing: In this step, they need to place their products on sale, and after that, they need to observe the actual performance of the product.

Commercialization: In this stage, they need to implement marketing plan, and after that, they should start full production to sell the medicine (Neiger et al. 2013).

3.4 Recommendation for pricing policy, distribution and communication mix:

To distribute GlaxoSmithKline’s product in the market, the marketer must consider the characteristics of the product, the size of the organization, policy of the competitors. There are several options in front of GlaxoSmithKline to distribute their product are retailing, selling products through online, mail order, or providing the products to the wholesalers.

After selecting the distribution, it is important to concentrate on the price of the product. Pricing policy  affect the selling of any product directly, the amount of profit and loss and type of services should be attached to the products. There are no fixed rules to set the price for the new products, but it is important to consider the cost regarding the design of the product, labor, promotion and distribution. As there are several vaccinations for flu, so GlaxoSmithKline must implement a pricing strategy that should be sensitive to the production costs as well as the marketing costs.

After deciding to launch any product, it is important to have some effective promotional strategy to attract the buyer so they can be aware regarding the product. As opined by Neiger et al. (2013), to communicate any product with the customers, it is important to follow different communication mixes like public relations, advertising, personal selling, sales promotion and public relations. The marketing mix of GlaxoSmithKline is:

  • Product: The product of GlaxoSmithKline is the flu vaccine for the older people, so they follow low pricing strategy to attract them.
  • Place: The make their product available to almost every medicine shops, to online and the distributors so it can be easily available to the older people.
  • Price: GlaxoSmithKline must follow an affordable pricing strategy for the older people.
  • Promotion: They should promote their products in magazine, newspaper and televisions.

3.5 Explanation of how factors affect the effective implementation of marketing plan:

As per the viewpoint of McDonald (2014), for minimizing the risk and maximizing the profit, it is important to tailor a suitable marketing plan with different needs. However, few factors are concerned with the effective implementation of the marketing plan. The factors that directly affect the marketing plan are as follows:

  • Limitation in budget: Without sufficient resources, the management team will not be able to complete their market research, and along with that, they will not be able to implement an effective marketing plan.
  • Illegality: If any marketing plan is illegal, then it may lead to having a legal action against the organization that has implemented it.
  • Unsupportive management: If the upper-level management of any organization does not support any marketing plan, then there are huge chances that the marketing plan for the organization may be failed.

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Task 4:

4.1 Explanation of how ethical issues influence marketing planning:

Ethics in any organization are carrying principles of the right conduct that can shape the decision that any organization or people make. As stated by Pickton and Broderick (2011), practicing a good ethics in organization deliberately address the moral principles, the standard of the fairness and wrong in the organization. The main purpose of a good marketing ethics is to stop anybody to take advantages from any unethical activities. Once the economic system is fulfilled with the needs and wants of the customers, there should be a concern for the organization to consider ethical values rather than simply providing just products or services to the customers (Anderson, 2015). If any organization behaves ethically, then they can get a development of the positive attitudes regarding the product, or services in the mind of customers. On the other hand, unethical business or marketing practices may lead to the bad publicity or the reputation in the mind of the customers that may lead to the dissatisfaction among customers and loss of trust and business opportunity.

Therefore, it can be said that the unethical business practices may influence the marketing practices and affect the marketing plan for the GlaxoSmithKline. Therefore, in order address the needs and wants of the customers, it is important for them to be sensitive to the organization. They should be more socially responsible along with their marketing practices so they can protect the rights of the customers, stimulate trade in a wide range and avoid unfair trading. The main ethical issues in the market are different perspectives of ethics in the marketplace, ethical tradeoffs, etc. Therefore, to be a more ethical organization, GlaxoSmithKline must avoid child labor, excessive working hours and should implement an effective competitive strategy by which they can follow a good competitive strategy that is more ethical in nature.

4.2 Example of organization responds to ethical issues:

According to Pulendranet al. (2013), several strategies can enhance the ethical behavior and help an organization to reduce unethical behavior. To practice ethical strategy, the top-level managers should inspire their subordinate to practices different moral consciousness buys giving them appropriate support as well as care. Along with that, it is also recommended to the GlaxoSmithKline to focus on the practicing of the ethical practices and the norms in a different level of the organization (Lysonski and Pecotich, 2012). To strengthen ethical practices in the organization, it is important to provide ethical training to the employees and implement the ethical framework in the organization so employees could be self-disciplined and capable of facilitating ethical practice. GlaxoSmithKline must avoid the below mentioned unethical issues in their organization:

  • Product: Identification of the product related products, lack of customer’s communication, continually produce the poor quality product, unfit description regarding the product.
  • Price: predatory pricing, fixing of price, discrimination in price, deceptive pricing strategy, use of loss leaders
  • Distribution: controlling the supply of the product and increase the selling price of the product when it is out of stock
  • Place:the Different price of the product in a different location.

Along with that, GlaxoSmithKline must avoid imitation of the product, launching products before registration of the product, utilization of false trade names, bootleg or pirate copies, utilizing the fake domain name or brand name.

4.3 Example of consumer ethics and its effect on the marketing planning:

As stated by Klompmaker (2013), ethical customers are those customers who consider different environmental issues, ethical issues, animal issues as well as different domineering regimes and the armament during shopping. For proceeding with the good marketing plan, it is important for the GlaxoSmithKline organization to consider the rights of the customers. GlaxoSmithKline must not be immoral during selling their product because it may cause bad brand image or attitude in the mind of customers. For example, if any customer purchases any products that are against the law or illegal in nature then they should not consider about the right of the customer for their sales. They should not consider the right of the customers if they claim for false insurance, and any dishonesty with the warranties, voucher’s mis-redemptions. Along with that, GlaxoSmithKline should not consider the right of the customers if they are copying and distributing the product and facilitating illegal downloads. GlaxoSmithKline must not consider the right of customers in case of the above-mentioned causes because it directly affects their market.

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From the above discussion, it can be clearly understood that organization cannot sell their products immediately after starting their manufacturing. To sell products to the customers and achieve huge profit from the market, it is important for the organization to practice ethical process. Along with that, the organization must conduct a market research before introducing any product to the market so they can assess the actual need of the customers and the future of their product.

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