Unit 20 Sales Planning Assignment - L’Oreal

Unit 20 Sales Planning Assignment - L’Oreal

Unit 20 Sales Planning Assignment - L’Oreal

Program

Diploma in Business

Unit Number and Title

Unit 20 Sales Planning - L’Oreal

QFC Level

Level 5

Task 1

Introduction

L’Oréal as a brand has been immensely successful in the cosmetic products industry and the fact that the company is able to sell its products to 150 countries across the globe is a testimony to its success. Over 5 billion individual products in a year are sold by the company. The reason for its success depends on the fact that it has been able to reach out to customers in different countries of the world, across different ranges of income and different patterns of culture. This unit 20 sales planning assignment - L’Oreal discussed Developing business sales planning can help company cope with aging systems and limited resources that can lead to fragmented business solutions. In line with the launch of new cosmetic lines for the company the following pages tries to understand the importance of personal mix in overall marketing strategy of the company.

Unit 20 Sales Planning Assignment - L’Oreal

1.1 Explain the importance of personal selling in supporting the promotional mix for an organisation like L’Oréal

Personal selling is an oral communication that the seller makes with the buyer with an intention of making a sale to the prospective buyer. The initial focus of personal selling is on developing a relationship with the prospective buyer. However, the seller would ultimately attempt to close the sale. It is a process through which the individual  sales development  work with on a one-on-one level with the customer so that he can match the product of the company with the need of the customer (Albers, Mantrala and Sridhar, 2010). Personal selling is an important communication tool and an important component of the promotional mix. The sales task is divided into the following components.

  • Step 1 Prospecting and Qualifying- Prospecting is the task of developing a list of people who are likely to make the purchase of a product. Qualifying on the other hand is trying to figure out those prospects that are most likely to purchase the product (Dixon and Tanner Jr, 2012). The prospects are sometimes rated as A, B, C and D in order of the most to the least type of prospect who will probably purchase the product.
  • Step 2 Pre approac- In the pre approach phase the sales person tries to know more and more about his prospect
  • Step 3 Approach- One way of approaching the customer is through cold calls. However, the way that is more effective in approaching the customer is through references.
  • Step 4 Presentation- This step is a very vital step in the selling process and it is here that the prospect is converted into customer by the sales person.
  • Step 5 closing the sale- In this step the sales person tries to get the order from the customer.
  • Step 6 Follow up- After the sale has been completed, it is important to maintain contact with the customer and solve any problems that he or she might face with the product purchase. Follow up can eventually result in repeat purchase by the customer (Dixon and Tanner Jr, 2012).  

The information about the needs, wants, age group, choices and other details of the customers that are gathered by the sales person in the process of selling is very important for a company like L’Oréal. This information would help the company in making products that suit the needs and requirements of the customers and maintaining its advantage over other companies in the market. Promotion is the last element of the marketing mix and it plays an important role in stimulating the sales of the company. Promotion mix is the way in which the company presents information to the customers. This is the message that persuades the prospect to make a purchase. Personal selling is a crucial element of the promotional mix needs to be integrated so that entire process is carried out in a successful manner.

1.2 Using the scenario compare the stages of the decision making process of Corporate with Consumer buying behaviour in both B to B and B to C

The decision making process of the buyer before he purchases goods is comprised of the following stages:

  • Stage one- Reorganisation of a need or problem- In this stage the buyer either internally identifies or is forced to identify through advertisement that he lacks a certain thing or there is a demand of certain thing that needs to be fulfilled (Salehi, 2012).
  • Stage two- Searching for information- Once the buyer has identified the need that needs to be fulfilled, he begins to search for alternative solutions or information so as to fulfil these needs.
  • Stage three- Evaluation of the available alternatives- After he has lot of products at hand that have the potential to fulfil his or her demand, he begins the process of evaluation wherein he tries to evaluate between the several alternatives so as to find the best solution at the best price.
  • Stage four- Making the choice- After the choices have been evaluated the individual make a choice about what to buy and from whom to buy and makes the purchase.
  • Stage five- Post purchase evaluation- The sales process or the purchase process does not end with the purchase of goods. After the consumer has made the purchase he evaluates on the same. The result of this evaluation would decide his or her future purchase for  organisation behaviour .

Unlike consumer purchase decision process the stages of a corporate purchase decision process are as follows:

  • Awareness- The process of purchase begins with the company identifying a need for purchase. The decision to buy a thing might be taken in order to replenish stocks, buy a new product or replace an existing item.
  • Specification- After agreeing with the requirements, a detailed specification is prepared with has quantities, performance, and technicalities of the product. 
  • Proposals- After identification of potential suppliers, the buying team asks for detailed proposals from the suppliers.
  • Evaluation- The different proposals are evaluated based on performance, price and value for money.
  • Order- After negotiating the different terms with the supplier, finally an order for the product is placed with the supplier.

The sales people have a great influence on the purchase process. In case individual purchase the sales people have a role to play in the need identification process. Sometimes a need is created by the sales people even when the prospect might not actually need the product. Similarly the sales people can also create need for a product (awareness) in the corporate buying decision process. The sales people can also help in creating the specifications in the corporate buying behaviour process and in the stage when the customers starts searching and evaluating the alternatives. The convincing power of the sales people can be used to project a product as the right thing for the prospect and can make the prospect make the purchase decision. Similar is the case of L’Oréal. In case of L’Oréal, the sales people can create the need for a particular beauty product as a must have for the individual customer and promote its advantages against a comparable product available in the market. Thus the sales people can make the prospect make a purchase decision (Salehi, 2012). Similarly the salespersons of L’Oréal can visit businesses and create the awareness of their beauty products designed for the businesses to purchase in bulk. They can help the companies in setting out specifications and can create a proposal which compels the business client to make the purchase. 

1.3 Analyse the role of sales team within L’Oréal’s marketing strategy

The roles and responsibilities assumed by the sales and marketing team depend on the products that are being offered by the company and way in which market is segmented. For instance, if the market is segmented by geography then the different members would be responsible for particular geographies. After knowing the marketing segment that is to be addressed by a particular member of the team the team member should make marketing strategy in order to address the needs of people belonging to that particular segment. After an overall marketing strategy has been developed, the team members are responsible for creating the plan so as to implement the strategy in his or her area of responsibility. The conflicting demands of sales and marketing environment are balanced so as to achieve an approach that is common. Each member is responsible for achieving the requirements of his or her particular market segment.

In order to achieve the  marketing strategy  of L’Oréal each member of the sales team and the team as a whole have an important role to play. The team has to first work together in prospecting and qualifying the prospects. This would ensure that L’Oréal has a ready list of prospects who might be able to purchase the product. The pre-approach would follow this stage where in the sales person tries to know more and more about the prospects. This is a very vital stage as it helps a company like L’Oréal to know more about the customers, their habits, demographics, like and dislikes along with their purchasing behaviors. The company can make use of this information for making products so as to suit the needs of the customers. The team also plays a role in approaching the customer, closing the sale and in follow up. The most important thing that sales person along with sales team achieve for L’Oréal is that they help in creating relationship with the customers (Bradford, Brown, Ganesan, Hunter, Onyemah, Palmatier, Rouziès, Spiro, Sujan and Weitz,  2010). In an era where most of the purchases are made online, the relationship building exercise can prove to be very vital as sales can be generated only after building successful relationship with the customers.

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Conclusion

The above pages discuss the importance of personal selling in the marketing process especially for a company like L’Oréal. In order to evaluate the role of personal selling the above pages have considered different steps in the sales process, different stages in the purchase decision of customers and corporate and an analysis of the role that sales team plays in the marketing process of the company. Through this essay it has been understood that personal selling is very important to know the choices of the customer and convert a prospect into a customer. The importance of personal selling is even more highlighted in the era where online selling dominates retail selling.

Task 3

3.1 Explain how corporate objectives impact on sales strategies and vice versa. Use the L’Oréal case study to support your answer

A sales strategy can be referred to as a comprehensive plan that is used for getting the consumers to purchase products and services of a company (Ataman, Van Heerde and Mela, 2010). Although the sales strategy of a company can be based on business and marketing strategy, the focus of sales strategy is to increase the sales of the company rather than increasing the visibility of the company. On the other hand the corporate objective of the company can be defined as a set of realistic goals by a company which in turn influences the internal strategic decisions of the company. The corporate objective targets used by the business would most often specify the time frame that is estimated for the achievement of the same and would also describe the success of the company in achieving the objectives.  

The sales are the reason for which most companies (for profit organizations) exist. The aim of the corporate is to increase top line (revenue) and the bottom line (profits). If the company cannot generate sales then it is understood that the products of the company are becoming irrelevant. In line with this important realisation, it is easy to understand the role played by sales strategy on corporate objectives. A basic element of sales strategy is to conduct a SWOT analysis of the company (Ataman, Van Heerde and Mela, 2010). The   SWOT analysis  that is done for creating the sales strategy is also used to set the corporate objectives. After the long term corporate objectives have been defined the sales strategy sets out long term and short term goals so as to make the company able to achieve the defined objective. The financial projections are also made based on the sales strategy and the KPIs measured on a time to time basis. Based on the analysis of these factors, it is possible that the corporate objectives and the sales strategy can be modified so as to take the company to the next level of performance. In short it can be said if corporate objective is a dream that is seen by the company, the efficiently guided sales strategy helps the company to be able to achieve that dream. For instance, in case of L'Oréal, it can be said that the success of the company in generating a brand identity that is worldwide has been possible because of a powerful sales and promotion strategy of the company.

3.2 Explain the significance of applying rigorous recruitment and selection procedures to your recruitment campaign.

The recruitment and selection are basically two different stages of the same process. The process from identification of the needs of a company to employ someone to the step of the arrival of the application forms is referred to as recruitment. Selection is the process of selecting the best candidates from those who have applied in order to fill a particular post.

It is very important to have a recruitment and selection process that is pretty rigorous in nature. This is because only a recruitment and selection process that is rigorous would be able to select the best talent from the available pull of talents (Salas, Tannenbaum, Kraiger and Smith-Jentsch, 2012). These talents are required so as to take the company forward and for enabling it to achieve further growth in revenue and profit. For example it is important to note that L’Oréal has been successful as a company because it has been able to stay a local company as strong as other locals and still be backed by international strategy and image. The company has been successful as a company because it has been able to understand the preferences and choices of the people across varied geographies, culture and income levels and devise products that were able to fulfill the needs of these people. In this regards people have played a major role for the company and thus to grow further in future the company needs the best talents who would be capable of carrying this legacy forward. It is important to note that there are several similarities and differences when it comes of selling a car vs. selling a cosmetic product. Selling of a car is based on selling of a real object which has value. However, selling of a cosmetic product is based on selling of the abstract concept of beauty and the image that is created through the process in the process of selling that result in successful sell.

3.3 In a section of your report evaluate the role of effective motivation, remuneration and training on sales management

As per dictionary definition, motivation can be regarded as the reason for a person acting or behaving in a certain manner. A motivation can be said to be an external or internal factor that help in stimulating energy and desire in people so that they are continually committed or interested in a job, subject or role so that they make an effort towards goal attainment (Herzberg, Mausner and Snyderman, 2011). There are different tools that can be used by the management for motivating the sales people to achieve their targets and thereby improve performance of the company.

Team building and target setting can be used as a great motivational tool. If a laggard is put in a team of high performers it is likely to have a ripple effect on the performance of the laggard and his performance is likely to improve due to peer pressure. Target setting is usually coupled with some form of incentives which the people get on reaching or exceeding the target. Commission based remuneration is a form of financial incentive which the workers get on reaching or exceeding a target. This is a great motivational tool and can be used for motivating the workforce. Some of the training methods that can be used to train the sales people in L’Oréal are

  • Training on specific products- This form of training can be used to train the sales personnel of the company on the new product lines that L’Oréal is planning to launch.
  • Ongoing training- On going training is required to train the people on different areas so as to keep them updated with the latest product launches of the company and the latest technology or services available in the market.
  • CPD- CPD is a commitment that is made by the members to continually update their  communications and knowledge  so that they are able to remain competent professionally. This is required to be given to the sales people of the company so as to keep them professionally updated and competent.

Remuneration or money plays a great role in motivating the sales people so that they try to achieve their sales target (Herzberg, Mausner and Snyderman, 2011). The companies usually do this by setting a target and attaching financial incentives with that target. The sales people are motivated to reach the target with the possibility of achieving financial incentives.

3.4 Explain how you plan to organise sales activity and what measures you will take to control sales output.

There are several activities that need to be performed in an efficient manner for achieving the sale. It is important that different sales activities need to be properly organized so that the company is able to achieve the sales target in an efficient manner. The sales activities would be organized in the following manner:

  1. A few people would be assigned the tasks of getting a list of prospects. They would also be required to call the prospects, qualify them and set an appointment with them.
  2. The second group of people would be required to visit the qualified prospects, make the sales presentation and attempt to close the sale. The various sales control measures are:
  • Sales budgets- These are detailed financial projections about the sales activities and what the companies intends to achieve in a given time period. It creates a list of costs and revenues so as to justify the sales activities.
  • Performance standards- The performance standards are set so as to evaluate the performance of the sales people and whether they are performing in accordance with the set standards or there is a performance lag (Onishi and Manchanda, 2012).
  • Performance against targets- After setting the performance standards the performance of the sales people are evaluated against the same so as to identify the degree by which it needs to be improved or to rewards the sales people on successful target achievement. 

3.5 Explain the use of databases in effective sales management for an organisation like L’Oréal

Database building is an important activity under the sales management. In the database the company lists the prospects on the basis of their geography, income, age, educational background, purchasing habits etc (Tanaka, 2010). This helps the company to target the prospects with a product that is suited to their needs. Managing a database is also helpful for future employees of the company as without the same the company would have to reduplicate efforts ever time a veteran sales person leaves the organization.

However, two prominent risks that arise with the use of databases are presented below:

  • Data protection- With the data base created there can be a risk that the data in the data base might be stolen and sold to a rival company dealing with the same product line. A well created data base can be a great asset for any company and there is always a risk that the sales person who is leaving the organization might steal the data and use it to sell products of a different company.
  • Security- There is a great risk of security with the data base as there are plenty of reasons for stealing the same. In order to ensure security of the data base it should be stored on a central server and highly encrypted.

L’Oréal can unleash great benefits through the use of data bases. It can use data bases to create a list of its existing and prospective customers. The great variety of information stored in the data base can serve as a great asset for the company, as it can use this information to create new products and target specific customers so as to achieve higher sales revenue while meeting customer demands.

Task 4

Sales plan

Sales plan for new perfume range

Vision 3-5 years

Stay amongst top 5 international brands, Annual revenue of £6M, Profiting £650K /year

Mission

To be in the psyche of every customer

Objectives–2016

  • Increase revenue from £2M to £4.0M
  • Open a minimum of 5 major accounts each worth at least £1.5M on an annual basis.
  • Number of active accounts should be increased from 70 to 100.

Strategies

  1. Leading account team to be able to  sell at multiple levels in top 15 target accounts
  2. Cross sell full range of product offerings.
  3. Implement goals of contact system, either adhere to or exceed outgoing calls goal, goals maintain or exceed my goals for outgoing calling.

Actions

  1. Scheduling two visits to sites / month
  2. Meeting with three high potential existing customers by month end
  3. 5 meetings with executive prospects per week
  4. Monthly mailing to prospect list and existing customers
  5. Design KPI matrix and evaluate performance of sales people
  6. Developing new sales presentation
  7. Create a list of 1000 prospects by month end.

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References

Albers, S., Mantrala, M.K. and Sridhar, S., 2010. Personal selling elasticities: A meta-analysis. Journal of Marketing Research47(5), pp.840-853.
Ataman, M.B., Van Heerde, H.J. and Mela, C.F., 2010. The long-term effect of marketing strategy on brand sales. Journal of Marketing Research47(5), pp.866-882.
Bradford, K., Brown, S., Ganesan, S., Hunter, G., Onyemah, V., Palmatier, R., Rouziès, D., Spiro, R., Sujan, H. and Weitz, B., 2010. The embedded sales force: Connecting buying and selling organizations. Marketing Letters21(3), pp.239-253.
Dixon, A.L. and Tanner Jr, J.J.F., 2012. Transforming selling: why it is time to think differently about sales research. Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management32(1), pp.9-13.
Herzberg, F., Mausner, B. and Snyderman, B.B., 2011. The motivation to work (Vol. 1). Transaction publishers.
Onishi, H. and Manchanda, P., 2012. Marketing activity, blogging and sales. International Journal of Research in Marketing29(3), pp.221-234.
Salas, E., Tannenbaum, S.I., Kraiger, K. and Smith-Jentsch, K.A., 2012. The science of training and development in organizations: What matters in practice. Psychological science in the public interest13(2), pp.74-101