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Unit 9 Marketing Planning Assignment
Diploma in Business (Marketing)
Unit Number and Title
Unit 9 Marketing Planning
According to Kotler, (2013) marketing is a social process through which people or group of people obtain what they need by exchanging ideas and goods with each other. The concept of market planning may be defined as the intent to identify, predict and satisfy the customer’s demand in such a manner that producer makes a profit. In a simpler manner, marketing can be explained as the amalgam of a controlled analysis of planning programs, designing them and then, implementing them to achieve the targets of organizational objectives.
1.1 Review changing perspectives in marketing planning
Referring from Winchester et al (1997), marketing plan is an all-purpose tool that enables the management to know everything related the company. It is an indication that shows marketing management what is the flaws of their plan, how to succeed in their goals and redefine the direction in a new market or new product against the competitors. Nonetheless, it shall be responsive that a good marketing plan must contain with the consideration of changing perspectives.
The recent changes that have occurred in the market can be depicted with a case study. Here, I have chosen the case of a Car Rental service that is based in St. Louis, Missouri and was founded in 1957 with efforts from Jack C. Taylor. This is named Rent-A-Car. It is located around in 5400 locations in the city, covering about 400 airport locations. As per Detroit News, this company busy around 7% of the number of vehicles sold in the nation (Cateora, 2007).
One most valuable strategy used by the company to grow its business was Igor Ansoff’s Matrix (1965). The four marketing strategies used by them according to Ansoff’s Matrix suggest:
- Market penetration- This involves practices like price reduction, promotional aggravation etc. to sell the major products into the market.
- Product development- New products are developed and positioned in the market for the customers.
- Market development- Existing goods and services are sold in newly emerging markets.
- It involves developing new products and putting them into new markets at the same time.
Here in figure 1.0 we can see Ansoff’s(1965) matrix used by ENTERPRISE. The arrows explaining the increase in risk associated through the above explained method.
Diversification is risky tactic that is considered when a business tends to expand itself in the external experience areas and suggesting an entire new consumer group. In this process one organization has to also bear the additive costs of the development of the new product. Thus, enterprise had more attention over the growth of market development, product development and diversification.
Therefore Enterprise became the most successful car rental service using market planning strategies irrespective of the downfall of economies (Times 100 business case studies, 2014).
1.2 Evaluate the organization’s capability for planning its future marketing activity
Organizational capability is defined as the summation of the company’s capability, strengths, weaknesses, resources etc. It can be simply termed as the ability of a company to cope up with the competitive marketing conditions and bring in opportunistic momentum for the business.
Following are the major types of marketing practices:
- Marketing share is incremented
- A growth in turnover or sales
- A loyal base of consumers gets formed
- Profitability is brought in with cost-effectiveness
Following are the enterprises organizational power:
- Core competence-The ability to bring in a purposeful and innovative management and making it a brand image being led by three Taylor generations
- Strength- Loyal customers, internationally recognized brand, skilled and committed employees, focused on customer satisfaction service and providing distinctive services and different from that of their rivals.
- Weakness- Other organizations have similar products, decentralized branches- meant that local managers can afford to plan out things in the basis of locations, difficulty in acquiring large funds as it is a private company, competitive prices and large maintenance cost for rental offices, employees and cars
- Resources- Location of branches close to customers, a large network including more than 7000 offices in five different countries and more than 70,000 employees
Enterprise has always focused on the most basic requirement of a business model i.e. Customer service and satisfaction, for example, this is a beneficial service for the customers as local pick-up service is provided to the customers; they can be taken to the branch to receive their service. This makes the company a reliable and credible brand.
Organization capabilities of enterprise rent-a-car are as follows:
- It focuses over internal processes and systems for satisfying customers requirements
- It creates specific competencies which provide competitive advantage
- It ensures that employee skills and efforts are directed towards achieving organizational goals and strategies
1.3 Examine techniques that the company use or might use for organizational auditing and for analysis external factors that affect marketing planning
Enterprise’s SWOT analysis has shown below:
- Strong brand value
- An enormous number of vehicles
- Large scale operation
- Leading performer in customer service
- High maintenance and repair costs
- High capital intensive operation
- Not much rentals during one-ways
- Concentration of assets
- Difficulty in acquiring capital as it is a private company
- Recent initiatives
- Growing car rental market
- Internet can be used for this service
- Bigger presence at airports
- Trending scenario for renting cars
- Intense competition
- Uncertain fuel prices
- High labour cost
- Rising rates in internet
- Downturn in the (used) car market
Enterprise’s PEST analysis has shown below:
Duties to be imported on company cars
Competitive attitude, Several political matters including heavy duties
The emergence of diversified customers
An increment in capacity
Economies of scale
A range of differences among the competitors
Environmentally safe cars
New trend of rental services
Varying customer tastes
Efficiency of the company
OVERALL MARKETING ATRRACTIVENESS
The business is quite appealing in today’s market situation
This will let customers opt for rental services for travelling.
Enterprise Rent-A-Car – Five forces Analysis:
1.4 Carrying out an organizational auditing and analysis of external factors that affect marketing planning in a given situation
As per the SWOT analysis of Enterprise explained above, we can observe multiple strengths within the company. Enterprise always work hard to achieve excellence and to build good customer bonding in order to develop a long-term relationship, thus resulting into a long term profit. However, some hurdles always remain a part of consumers’ dissatisfaction. One of them is the trouble that a consumer needs to face with the unavailability of one-way rental services at the nearby branches (local ones). The second cause of concern is the issue of high costs that are incurred on maintenance purposes. The main opportunity for Enterprise is growing global car rental business and use of internet for booking. Consumers need rental cars for numerous reasons 24/7. Some basic threats to the company are uncertain fuel prices (mostly increasing), high labour costs and internet rates.
As per the PEST analysis that has been explained above, due to a rise in competitiveness in air tourism, car industry has suffered a steep decline. As soon as the recessionary situation gets recovered, travelling will take place in full swing once again. Apart from this, this has also led to the increment in revenues from non-airport locations (Rental, 2010). There are a number of issues such as legislation, taxes, duties that are imposed on the commercial vehicles. There is an irritable rate of 18% taxes in local locations and around thirty percent at airport locations. Many economic issues like mergers and strategic alliances, excess capacities, diversification affects gradually on the business of organization. As for social factors within the industry, consumers always have different tastes in vehicle choices. Technological factors such as, E-commerce, safety and plant efficiency have their own individual affects (Majaro, 2013).
2.1 Assess the main barriers to marketing planning
A strong marketing strategy and planning is essential and vital component for any organisation. However, sometimes, there are certain barriers of marketing planning. For example,
- Lack of motivation of change: If stakeholders are de-motivated and do not feel the need to overcome the threats or grab the emerging opportunities, it would be a main barriers to a good marketing plan.
- Overconfident with problems solution: Overconfident would cause a flawed or inappropriate solution for the problems.
- Failure of co-operation between management: Human resources and financial department are not willing to share resources and goals, manifestly the marketing effort will be impaired.
- Lack of knowledge and skills: Without proper knowledge and skills may lead to unrealistic plan and ideas.
There should be a very sound marketing strategy if one wants the company to grow. However,
following are some of the hurdles that come up at times:
- Chaos in formulating tactics
- The functioning gets disrupted
- The concept of marketing is not always very well understood
- Organizational barriers
- In-depth analysis is missing
- Output is not properly analysed while initiating the venture
- Systematic approach seems to be missing
- Aims and strategies do not get properly prioritised
- the corporate culture is not very conducive to formulate plans
Figure 2.0 showing the revenue chart of Enterprise Rent-A-Car.
2.2 Examine how organizations may overcome barriers to marketing planning
- Confusion between tactics and strategy- Sometimes employees get confused between the vision, tactics and strategies of the marketing planning which creates a barrier for development of organization. For example strategy includes planning, long term finance etc. and tactics involves doing, smaller scale and short term frame. This kind of factors often causes confusion between tactics and strategy. These kinds of confusion must be rectified by the team leaders or area managers as soon as possible.
- Isolating the marketing functions from operations- when recession was at the peak every company tried to make balance by introducing various cost cutting methods. Many organizations decrease the marketing feeling that it would affect their budget in hard times. If the functions of marketing get isolated or alienated, then the progress of a firm gets affected. So a clear plan of cost efficiency must be implied in those scenarios to avoid any kind of negative impact.
- Confusion between the marketing function and marketing concept- when there is lack of concentration on marketing concept and there is a state of confusion on marketing function then the whole marketing planning is hampered. So an enhanced way of describing the plan must be created to make sure there are no adverse effects on marketing functionality.
- Organizational barriers – if stakeholders are unmotivated and do not wish to overcome, this could be a main barrier. Instead they should have a positive approach over the whole condition and take the responsibility to overcome the challenges.
- Lack of systematic approach to marketing planning- more aggressive way to implement the marketing plan can be a bad option. Not every time any publicity is good publicity in a business model. So to avoid these circumstances, a good marketing planning is applied in a step-by-step process for getting a fruitful result.
- Lack of in-depth analysis– if your study over the consumer relationship is weak then you cannot succeed any kind of business. To overcome these kinds of troubles Enterprise use a customer feedback service on a regular basis to understand the demand of the consumer.
- Confusion between process and output- in every successful business model there are certain key points for their steady developments i.e. combination of process and output. If there is any kind of problem regarding any of them could be dangerous for the entire organization. To avoid any confusions (Enterprise) use high end technology to determine the car’s location, the drivers profile and the customers’ information.
- Lack of knowledge and skills- unprofessional and untrained employees may be hazardous to the car rental services. If the drivers are unprofessional or with unfit conditions they can cause a high damage to the consumer’s life as well as brand value of the product. So there should be an authentic test of the employees before hiring them.
- Failure to priorities objectives- An organization must not forget its first priority i.e. Customer satisfaction. It can be an easy opportunity for their competitors to rise against them. The relationship between a service provider and consumer must be maintained at all cost for a successful marketing planning.
- Hostile corporate culture – this can be explained with an easy example- if lack of coordination occurs between financial unit and the human resources , then the organization might lose its horizon soon. In these types of matters, the owners should immediately look and try to solve the differences between them to obtain a good result.
A ten rules plan can also be used by enterprise rent-a-car in order to overcome the barriers in market planning, which are as follows:
- Strategy before tactics
- Situate marketing within operations
- Shared values about marketing
- Structure around marketing
- Scan the environment thoroughly
- Summarize information on SWOT analysis
- Skills and Knowledge
- Systematize the process
- Sequence objectives
- Style and culture
3.1 Write Marketing plan for a product or a service of your selected company
To achieve a great height in business arena an organization must follow a good marketing plan and avoid any kind of barriers in the implementation of marketing plan of the organization.
- Corporate objectives– With a tag line and trademark of “We’ll pick you up”, Enterprise has only one corporate objective to be the largest rental car company in America.
- Business objectives- Jack Taylor the owner of Enterprise had a basic belief that to take care of its consumers and employees was his first priority and then after earning profits (Powers, 2004).This belief generated the main four key foundations of Enterprise’s business objectives: Customer satisfaction is their first and foremost priority, the steady growth of their fleet, the employees’ overall development and to increase profits.
- Marketing objectives– Enterprise Rent-A-Car’s unique marketing plans has separated them from their other competitive car rental companies and acted advantageous for it. Enterprise uses a unique program for training all the employees. It has also initiated a step to encourage the professional, decentralization and upcoming good management approach. The entire decision making on an operating level in the company is an important element of the respective branch authority (Enterprise, 2010).
- Marketing plan for Enterprise rent a car-Company can introduce 2 basic plans, one for corporate and one for normal customers. The corporate plan of the company includes monthly rentals for the corporate consumers, extensive safety and security features like late night drops and maintaining long term relationships with the customers. For normal audience, enterprise needs to develop mobile based application which will help customers in booking the taxi services. Also, various promotional activities such as attractive discounts, referral codes etc initially to attract and establish a good customer base.
3.2 Explain why marketing planning is essential in the strategic planning process for an organization
Marketing plan provide information that enables stakeholders to measure the progress and highlighted the most appropriate marketing strategies. An effective marketing plan helps to increase product sales and enhance company profit margins. There are several advantages of market plan, it contains:
- Focus on your target market
- Identifies consumers' needs and wants
- Determines product demand
- Identifies potential customers
- Identifies competitor and analyze competitive advantage
- A measurement for generating the daily cash operational activities and how to make profit
Enterprise Rent-A-Car has more than 70,000 employees. It also has a large number of fleet of cars with over one million vehicles in many different countries. Enterprise is one of the leading taxi service companies in the world with having a record of a largest buyer of the cars on planet. The company do not sell any kind of product but it is a service provider with the use of car. In order to provide holistic services to the customers, an enterprise recruits skilled and professional employees. This helps an Enterprise achieves its business, corporate and marketing objectives. (Majaro, 2013)
3.3 Examine techniques for new product development
- Market penetration-Enterprise Rent-A-Car not only provides fleet but it also provides business rentals, long term rentals, and truck rentals and sells used cars. Earlier Enterprise used its marketing strategies for market penetration such as advertisements on televisions and newspapers. However, these days, they have turned their focus to new media such as Internet, display hoardings and several tools for advertisements.
- Product development-Enterprise Rent-A-Car can also initiate a batch of latest models and move towards introducing their consumers with a luxury vehicle choices.
- Market development-Enterprise Rent-A-Car can increase their global presence by moving toward Asian countries like India and China which can provide much more airport locations.
- Diversification- Enterprise Rent-A-Car can also jump towards similar business models such as Rent-A-Bike. I personally think it can be of great output to them. It can provide more business opportunities like selling used bikes and repairing them at its service stations.
New product development in enterprise Rent-a-Car includes launch of the new smart phone based application for various operating platforms such as Windows, android and iOS. The mobile application will used for booking the car; it will work on the basis of location of the user. Also for initial setup company can provide various promotional schemes for their application like using referral codes, adding discounts, free airport drops etc.
3.4 Justify recommendations for pricing policy, distribution and communication mix
Pricing policy- Enterprise Rent-A-Car has various plans for its consumer such as Economy, Intermediate, Standard and Full size special rates. It may vary from $9.99 to $19.99 per day. The profit is shared through all around organization which consists of a very large number of employees with 7,700 rental offices in 5 different countries (Forbes list, 2011).
Distribution mix- Enterprise Rent-A-Car has always located its branches nearer to its consumer. Having that mentality in mind Enterprise initiated an on-airport setup in the year 1995. This demand grew up in 10 years so much that company ended up with 200 on-airport branches till 2005. This is the main cause behind the success of Enterprise.
After selected a distribution way for the product, it should be concentrate with the product price. Price policy would directly affects the product sales, how much profit or loss company gain, to whom it is sold and what types of services should be attach. There are no fixed rules for setting the right place for a new product however it should always take into account the product design cost, the distribution, the promotional and the labour cost. The only recommendation in pricing strategy is to be sensitive, sensitive with the production cost, marketing cost.
Communication mix- In communication mix Enterprise has acquired a phenomenon stage. Communication plays a vital role in a successful business organization. Once a product gets launched in the market, the organization holds the sole responsibility to neglect away the personal rivalries among them. If the human resource is not willing to share its resources between each other than that situation might be a dangerous scenario for a multinational group like Enterprise. So it should be solved within the organization to cover up the marketing issues regarding their support.
3.5 Explain how factors affecting the effective implementation of the marketing plan have been taken into account
In order to maximize profits and minimize risks in a business, the only reliable way is to tailor a suitable marketing plan with the particular needs meanwhile using available marketing tools and information to enhance the flexibility. However, it is remarkable that there are few factors should be concern with as there would affect the effective implementation of the marketing plan or even impair the whole picture. On receiving a fabulous response from the entire North America Enterprise has gained a lot of reputation among its local as well as global markets due to its availability at most consumer friendly locations. One of the main barriers in the corporate scenario is:
Isolating the marketing functions from operations- when recession was at its peak, every company tried to make balance by introducing various cost cutting methods. Many organizations decrease the marketing feeling that it would affect their budget in hard times. Isolation of market can bring in negative impacts in a business. So, a clear plan of cost efficiency must be implied in those scenarios to avoid any kind of negative impact (Hathaway, 2009)
4.1 Explain how ethical issues influence marketing planning
The fundamental job of marketing ethics is to stop anyone to take advantage of others from unethical activities. After the practicing of ethics in marketing the standards of rightfulness, morals and frauds in the business organizations have been gradually decreased. Ethical values must be imposed strictly on organizations to fulfil all the requirements of the consumer, rather to provide just goods and services to them. The sole reason for an organization to build and behave ethically is important to improve a positive bond between the producer and the consumer. Also, when a consumer receives a full satisfaction from the services and goods provided to him/her by the organization. They tend to grow a positive approach towards the company which provides those services. When a company establishes unethical nature with its services, it heads towards customer’s dissatisfaction, losing the opportunity of business, negative brand value, negative marketing and may be a legal issue by the consumer. Ethical issues affect directly and indirectly on four main elements of marketing, they are:
- Product ethics- the presence or manufacturing of certain products may strongly offend some people while some others might be interested in them for example attitude towards the gay. With the help of negative advertising too, some organization mainly highlights the disadvantages of competitors which are mainly used in politics.
- Price ethics- products which have deliberately low life or no longer functional after a certain period of time so to put the consumers under constant pressure to buy goods again and again.
- Place ethics- deliberately sell products at a cheaper cost than the market value to capture a certain area or place and to create a barrier for new competition.
- Promotion ethics- during 1940’s tobacco was sold as promoting health. Violence and sexual content in a advertisement is especially banned to avoid ill-effects over the children but some product like condoms have been acceptable in the interest of STD-prevention (Volkman, 2011).
4.2 Analyse examples of how organizations responds to ethical issues
Organization such as Rent a car must avoid the following unethical issues:
- Product: Misleading product information, lack quality control and deliberately produce poor quality product, unfit product description.
- Price: Expensive price with a poor quality product
- Place: Different product price in different location
- Distribution: Control the product supply and increase the product selling price when out of stock.
In a simple manner if any organization wants to initiate or grow their ethical issues, it can be achieved by a two-step process. Firstly top level officials should boost ethical consciousness to their second-string by updating them about ethical values. The executive group of employees should be crafting ethical guidelines that work in the favour of the whole organization. There are numerous examples about the response over ethical issues from various organizations such as a recent activity by product recall of famous baby Product Company (Jhonson&jhonson’s) on 6th May, 2013.After 20 year of struggle and controversy, consumer activists were finally able to convince them (Jhonson&jhonson’s) to remove known carcinogens from their products (Zummo, 2013).
A shampoo made by the company with a tag of “no more tears” had the presence of formaldehyde in it which had adverse effects. In response to consumer pressure the company removed the chemicals from the product and removed the existing ones from stores. Not only from its baby products (Jhonson&jhonson’s) but also promised its customers that they will remove those chemicals from their other products like as Clean & Clear and Neutrogena (Zummo, 2013)
4.3 Analyse example of consumer ethics and the effect on marketing planning
In order to proceed with a good marketing plan, the organisation shall take consumer's right into account. As being immoral in product sales and product purchase, it may cause bad attitude or situation. For example, if customer purchasing product which is illegal or against the law, obviously the organisation would not consider about customer's right for the sales. It would directly affect to the market itself and unethical behaviour will be spreading around. Ethical issues ensure that the consumer must receive its basic right of getting quality services and goods to provide fair trade. In the above example of (Jhonson and jhonson’s) we can clearly observe that if an organization at a peak position in a business can apologise to its consumers and recall its products, to ensure business ethics. This incident and many other like one of those shows us the power and rights of consumers. Consumer ethics plays a great role in a marketing plan of any organization. It directly as well as indirectly effects market planning.
In unit 9 marketing planning assignment conclusion it can be said that Many organizations often provides false insurance claims, warranty deceptions etc. These kinds of false promises often led to weaken consumer and seller’s bond. Talking about the mentioned process, the company needs to bear additive costs of the newly developed product. Thus, Enterprise had more attention over the growth of market development, product development and diversification. Therefore Enterprise became the most successful car rental service using market planning strategies irrespective of the downfall of economies
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