Marketing communication entails pushing products and services to customers and the customers’ response towards these products and services. It involves many elements such as advertising, publicity, sales promotion, and direct marketing. Marketing communication appears mostly in form of promotions and advertisement.
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At times the process of communication may be complex but if all the models used are cooperative then it becomes an easy process. The models used in marketing communication are the sender, the medium, the message, receivers and sometimes feedback (Yeshin 127).
Effective marketing communication is necessary in all business. One advantage of communication is that it assists a company in achieving its sales target. Communication provides information which tells a consumer that there is a new product in the market. Without communication a customer can not be assumed to know the availability of certain product in the market.
In today’s market there are so many products most of them being substitute and therefore it is the work of every company to make sure that proper communication channels are used to inform the user about a new brand in the market.
From the view of the Marketing Communications Director of the new Brand Poppy which will be launching a new beer brand called bull cane this report will aim to assess the beer market and identify the communication strategies of two major competitors for Poppy. It will produce a marketing communications plan for the launch of the new brand and consider the factors involved in launching the brand internationally
Over the years, the beer industry has been undergoing a substantial change. This has been as a result of the increase in competition globally and the change toward global supply sequence. The end users play a major role in terms of selection of suppliers and in decision making of products which is changing from being operational to being strategic.
The increased number of producers resulting from emergence of new entrants in the market has led to increased competition. Consumers have become choosy due to the increase in the number of product options in the market (Hines & Bruce 2007).
They now desire for an exciting shopping in innovative stores. This has led to increased operation cost on the side of producers trying to match up with the customer need. It is the work of the operation management to utilize the scarce resource and maximize returns.
In striking for the right opportunities, Poppy will have to analyze its main market rival as this is the major threat it has to face. The strategies being employed by the competitor should be critically assessed and evaluated for necessary counter action. In addition, the general plan of the competitor in a bid to control the market is a vital toolkit which this company can use to estimate the competitive edge of the market.
Similarly, the product being offered to the market at lower price should be investigated to determine its type and nature. Why, for instance, is the company lowering the price of this commodity?
Do they have access to cheaper raw materials or is it that quality of the product has been compromised and can be offered at a lower price than normal market value? Finally on opportunities, the marketing department will have to investigate the company’s managerial structure both current and in the past and give a detailed finding as well as possible conclusions on the same.
The market place can be analyzed further by use of a PESTEL analysis (see appendix 1). P.E.S.T.L.E. analysis is a management tool that assists in making informed decision about the influence that the company is going to get from the outside environments as the technology and other variables change.
Its analysis is applicable in start-ups and ongoing business. The beer industry in Australia is highly competitive. Introducing a new brand into the market can be difficult due to the number of well known brands which are already in existence.
It is therefore important for Poppy to analyze its major competitors by looking at their communication strategies, Poppy’s two major competitors are Coopers Pale Ale and Coopers Sparkling Ale.
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Coopers pale Ale is brewed in South Australia and it’s known for its cloudy appearance. It is produced from fruity characters and it has a fresh crisp bitterness ideal for any type of occasion. Similarly, Coopers Sparkling Ale has cloudy sediment and is produced from fruity, and malt characters (Anon 1).
Global marketing strategies call for developing strategies to develop and build brand image and loyalty among customers. This includes developing the positioning strategies as compared to competitors worldwide. Branding and positioning strategies must fit the product and the company across multiple countries. Because Poppy’s primary customer base is global customers, advertising campaigns must be similar.
Before choosing a business strategy, one has to evaluate different options and only chose the best (Earl 54). There are many different strategies that can be used in a business but all of them do not give equal results. It is upon the management to make a choice in which is the best taking into account the business operations and the needs of the market.
A customer is the backbone of a company; the main decision that a marketing manager should make is on a company’s market segment. A market segment is a homogenous subset of the main market, which share similar characteristics, which make it demand similar goods.
A segment is also stimulated by similar innovations. After developing a marketing segment the next step is to develop mechanisms that will enable one to sell in the target market. Market segmentation will help the company in meeting its needs through a marketing mix. It will also help in reducing costs as money for advertising and promotion is concentrated on the correct segment.
For both Coopers Pale Ale and Coopers Sparkling Ale segmentation on age takes place by focusing on the adults aged between 20 and 26 years. Both markets for the competitors are also segmented by consumer purchasing behaviour for instance whether the products are consumed every day or during occasions (Anon 2).
Consumption during occasions can be seasonal for example if there is an increase in purchases during Christmas or other public holidays this would be a good time to target this segment.
These competitors have also taken into consideration income distribution within the country and have identified areas where consumers have high disposable income and are also willing to spend on beers.
Marketing targeting is a vital element in developing the marketing strategies since it helps in evaluation of segments in order to decide which market to target.
Coopers Sparkling Ale target market is more towards the 30-45 age brackets with a high disposable income or real appreciation of real ales. These are people who enjoy the Premium ale and are prepared to pay a higher than average price to enjoy it.
They take pleasure in the fact this ale does not have additives or preservatives. Although Coopers pale ale captures the same age brackets as Sparkling Ale, this product also has the propensity to be more well-liked within the 18-30 year old bracket, and also women (owing to its sweet flavour).
The Pale drinker takes pleasure in taking new things, is happy to try out, and gets pleasure from spending time with friends.
Positioning is the choice of a target market and how to reach this market segment after market targeting; the next step in developing the marketing strategy is to create a positioning strategy for the product. Both products are luxury Brands with well known brand names, the products are similar in how they are positioned also, both of high price and high value.
Promotions take the form of On & Off pricing strategies, value add products (giveaways) to consumers, trade discounts and the like. Coopers have a range of agencies that they use to make their marketing and advertising strategies come to life.
KWP! Is the advertising agency that creates new advertising material, researches the target markets, books in all of the media (cinema, TV, radio, print, magazines). This is evaluated annually and all mediums, costing and individual publications are looked into and reviewed. Other agencies such as On Creative and Show pony cater for coopers packaging designs, branding elements, point of sale, and design of logos, re-branding and the like.
Marketing Communication Plan
The plan aims to bring together all the elements involved into a process which puts activities into a sequence of decisions which need to be made. Poppy will use a focused target marketing strategy, which develops a single marketing mix aimed at one target market.
Although the product may be used by different ages, the target group will be aged 20-26 this is because this age group likes experimenting new products and it takes pleasure in hanging out with friends especially during occasions.
Lifestyle is a very significant way of segmentation as it reflects a consumer’s interests, opinions and activities (Jobber 285). Poppy’s target market will be males who take pride in themselves and enjoy spending time with their friends.. They will be men with high disposable incomes as not every one can afford to spend on beers.
It is important to create a high level of awareness during the product launch in order to be competitive among the well known brands within the market. Financial constraints involve the costs involved in research and development, also the high level of advertising used by competitors may create a challenge to keep up with especially as the new brand Poppy is not yet established in the beer market.
Marketing Communication Objectives
The new brand is in the introduction stage of its life cycle and there is need to create awareness among the target consumers. To attain this noble general objective, the company aims at analyzing the market, and segmenting the market into smaller units.
From its positioning statement, the company aims at creating a human-technological interface where it approaches its strategies from a psychological angle. It poses to give solutions to people and by so doing it is able to market its product effectively.
Poppy aims to be Australian largest beer manufacturer. To attain this, it has to improve its bull cane with the needs of customers. It has a research department which advises the company on the kind of products it manufactures for better customer satisfaction.
Marketing Communication Strategies
An effective marketing mix ensures that goods are available to the target customer, when they need them and at an affordable price. In Australia before Poppy decides on how to reach the target market, the first point is to collect adequate market data and analyze the data.
The company uses business intelligence tools to collect a wide range of data essential for its operations. The data is interpolated in terms of age, sex, region, education, income, and lifestyle. Its research centres offer great assistance in ensuring that all is set in terms of data available for decision making
The price of a commodity is an element of total cost plus a profit margin. When a target market has been established, there is need to determine the price that the target customer will afford comfortably. A marketer should be aware of the consumer treads and their potential.
The social class that the product is targeted will influence the price of the products (Reid, 20). The price parameter can be approached from the actual product price or the possibility that the product can be divided into smaller parts, not necessarily cheap, but the need for this is to enhance affordability
Poppy will use different modes of promotion such as newspaper, TV, and internet to launch its products in the new market. Poppy will use the push, pull, and profile strategies to introduce bull cane to the target market.
The push strategy aims at using the available channels of distribution to its maximum trying to push the product in the market. Push strategy requires the offer of discounts in order to motivate the promoting channel. It aims at launching new products into the market.
By offering discounts to wholesalers and distributors it means that the retailers will also get a discount from the wholesalers who in return sell poppy new product, bull cane, at reduced cost to the target consumers. These discounts are offered for a short period of time which means that wholesalers will purchase in large quantities in order to enjoy the discount and this flows to the end users.
Once the end users become used to certain products they will not be able to restrain themselves from using them even when the offer of discount is over (see appendix two for an example of a push strategy that can be used by Poppy).
In pull strategy, there is direct contact with the user of the product. The use of channels of distribution is minimized and more emphasis is put on advertisement. The major objective of the pull strategy is to ‘pull’ the forecast on distribution channels forcing a demand to them which they cannot ignore (see appendix three for example of a pull strategy).
The use of the profile strategy aims at giving an overview of the business activities. By use of the profile strategy the company realizes that it has a social responsibility to the public and all the stakeholders (the shareholders, the customer, staffs, society, government, etc). The company aims at ensuring that all stakeholders are satisfied (Moschis 12).
Shareholders are the owners of the company and it is the obligation of the management to make sure that the shareholders get returns that is in proportion to their share in the company. The company will not be able to guarantee shareholders returns if it does not engage in effective information communication.
Through communication, the companies’ sale revenue increases leading to increased profits and thus shareholders returns. It is the duty of the company to ensure that the end users get products of good quality and to provide employees with good working conditions and this can only be possible through communication (Peter 20) (appendix four shows a profile strategy that can be used by Poppy).
Poppy will also use Magazines to advertise, using magazines allows more information to be communicated as the consumer will spend more time browsing. By using magazines it will enable Poppy to target their audience more closely.
The particular Australian magazines which will be used are Heat Magazine because it is well known and highly advertised because it targets the same target audience as Poppy beer, both will feature double sided adverts. If this method proves to be a success for Poppy then more magazines will be used to raise awareness.
Poppy will also use the internet to advertise this new product since the target audiences are young people who use the internet on a daily service. The most appropriate company to use is the Google which is used by more than 50% of all internet users.
Public Relation Strategy
In discussing the Public Relations (PR) Strategy as it relates to company’s BCP, Good earth coffee will have to mitigate any damages during a PR crisis. They must first make a note of, and understand the potential threats that give rise to a PR Crisis.
All types of discrimination practices, which do not follow the Standard Operating Procedures and ignoring the quarterly testing the viability of the Business Continuation Plan (BCP), will eventually lead to a PR Crisis.
The standards operating procedures include the use of the highest ethical and moral standards while manufacturing their product and selling it to the customer in Australia. If crisis expectation is to remain a documented function for PR, ignorance of law cannot be used as a good excuse.
Today the world is changing into a global village where more and more companies are trading with each other internationally. Australian population is also in the rise; according to Australian bureau of Statistics, Australian population stands at 22,431,468. The population is mostly concentrated of the young; these are people who are below the age of fifty years (United Nation 2).
Resources and Scheduling
To provide some central control, but allow specialization as required to penetrate the market, Poppy will assign product managers. The product managers are the trouble shooters to resolve production, supply chain, quality, and efficiency. They have the authority to work across all operating companies to achieve goals. To meet the special needs of its target consumers, Poppy will hire, and assign global account managers based on industry.
The global account manager will serve as the single point of contact for the client. Industries to target would be consumer sales companies for drinks and food products. Appendix five shows the report structures. The blue line reporting of product managers to the vice president of marketing means they’re to coordinate with marketing personnel for brand and company image but remain primarily operations focused.
The green line between global account managers and product managers is to show both are expected to communicate with each other regarding customer needs and expectations.
The chart in appendix six is the Gantt chart and Work Breakdown Structure describing specific activities required for full implementation of poppy’s strategy in Australia. Each task takes into consideration factors such as objectives, resource allocation, deadlines, milestones, and the department responsible for its execution.
Appendix seven shows the factors that should be considered in the implementation process
Evaluation and Control
According to Brannan (5), strategic management involves formulating and implementing strategies that enable the organization to reach its objectives. Therefore it is important that an organization measures its success in the formulation and implementation of its strategy and this is called strategy evaluation..
The factors that are likely to have an impact on reaching these goals are the size of the organization, management styles, complexity of the environment, nature of the production processes, nature of the problem and the purpose and planning system, Strategy evaluation is important to ensure these factors do not hinder the achievement of strategic goals and evaluation should be followed by continuous improvement.
Evaluation is a continuous process, which should be included in each stage of communication plant
Once feedback is received the planning process comes to an end, feedback should be received at the end regarding the overall launch success of the product both internally and externally but it is also important to gather feedback during the process to pick up on activities which were particularly successful and those that could be improved.
To meet customer needs more closely Poppy will target males aged 20- 26 who have a relatively high disposable income to spend on luxuries drinks. The launch aims to inform and differentiate by raising awareness of the product and encouraging trial among the target audience.
Poppy is positioned as high priced and high value and sits between its two major competitors on the perceptual map. Poppy will generate brand awareness through mass advertising and celebrity endorsements which will be increased over public holidays.
Appendix. PESTEL Analysis
- free and fair government which promotes equality
- Fair Trade Practices
- Consumer Protection
- taxation policies
- Factors affecting the GDP- for instance employment, inflation, and government spending
- More disposable income
- Seasonality issues
- Developed economy
- Lifestyle trends and consumer preferences
- Demographic changes
- Increased consumer spending
- Multi-cultural society
- Innovation capacity
- Improved infrastructure
The forces described above helps in the determining the market growth (or decline) of Poppy and the implication of its strategic business unit. If an economic recession occurs, the economic forces would have a considerable bearing on the future market strategies through ripple effects on the political and socio-cultural factors.
Political factors put a restriction on the development of the industry by putting tough taxes and regulation requirements. Australia has been experiencing low tariffs barriers which have led to an expansion in the international trade thereby resulting in increased demand for food products.
Australia’s economic growth potential is facilitated by its demographic advantage and could therefore open up opportunities for industry development. Although the economy has been doing well and the future is promising, Poppy has to overcome some obstacles before it realizes its full potential.
First there is the government requirement which it has to adhere to before being allowed to operate, increased capital costs, requirement of skilled labour force, and rivalry from other firms. To add to these risks, the product is not guaranteed of a ready market in the new market making it a risky undertaking.
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