Strategic marketing is a more developed and structured system of marketing, which is concerned with a precise definition of a goal, measure and market analysis. It integrates the options of media and develops a structured system that enables the marketers to capture the market fully. It is aimed at maximum utilization of resources with high out put. Strategic marketing is drawn from a marketing plan.
This shows what programs and policies a company uses and how the implementation is carried out. Generally, its main purpose is to enhance marketing and create maximum customers’ satisfaction. It also encourages market penetration and innovation of application. Some people refer to strategic marketing as mainstream marketing. This is the surest way to operate in the market with limited risks.
Tim Horton is a fast food organization that has adopted to use a niche penetrating market strategy in its marketing. The company is operating in fast food restaurants in different parts of the United States. Due to its strategic system, the company has expanded its segments to various States, such as Ohio, New York, Michigan and Canada. This follows a new identified niche in the sector.
This new product is expected to boost the companies operation since it is the unique product in the entire market. Tim Horton opted for the strategy to stay ahead of competitors like Bucks and Dunkin Donuts organizations. Its major goal is to increase the market segment by sixty percent and capture most of the pioneer markets (Chernev, 2009, p. 49).
Roles of Strategic Marketing
Strategic marketing gives proper evaluation machinery in terms of product, distribution, promotional activities, pricing and both internal and external organization assessment. Apart from these, strategic marketing by Tim Horton will help in the analysis of the competitors and act as a reference to the next actions the organization should take (Kotler, 1996, p.72).
In any marketing state, whether pioneering or follower, a strategic marketing is vital for the identification of the difference between successful and flat growth of the company. Tim Horton strategy for growth relies on its strategies to enable it achieves the highest result (Hakan, 2004, p.35).
In maximizing the market, especially for market penetrators like Tim Horton, identification of market niche becomes a priority. For this to succeed, an organization needs close consultations with the clients to identify the unmet needs.
It is through strategic marketing that the organization programs will allow consultation and close supervision of customers to be carried out. Strategic marketing is also important market segmentation and positioning. Unearthing unmet needs and unsatisfied needs in any segment of the market will boost Tim Horton’s growth as well as maintaining customers’ loyalty (Kotler, 1996, p.27).
Resource utilization is vital in any organization, means of promotion and advertisement should be strategically designed to achieve the greatest results. In addition, strategic marketing caters for changes in the market, where fast and appropriate adjustments can be made, according to the presented situation.
Apart from these, monitoring aspect in strategic marketing gives early indicators thus managers prepare for the changes in the market (Hakan, 2004, p.67).
Strategic marketing creates confident and security to the marketers. Managers develop confidence to steer through market challenges. Strategic marketing gives the managers ability to control the company’s destiny since it acts as an organization steering wheel.
When Tim Horton adopt strategic marketing so will be its reaction towards the market threats. This will see the company sail through difficult times successfully (Kotler, 1996, p.46).
Strategic Marketing Plan
Tim Horton has a well developed marketing plan that has seen it gain substantially in the Canadian market. The company has utilized several modes to accomplish this. The company has carried out large promotions and advertisements that have enabled it to get recognition in whole of Canada.
This can be seen by constant reflection in the Canadian papers. It has carried out several sponsorship programs in sports and other activities such as the Bier of Canadian curling championship and Ringette Championship in 2005. Around 2007, they introduced Quickpay Tim Card instead of the gift certificates.
The slogan “it is hard to wrap double” was also added. Other slogans include, “you have always got time for Tim Horton”, “Always Fresh Always Tim Horton” and lately in 2011 it is “it is time for Tims” (Hakan, 2004, p.68). Tim Horton also carry out Roll up the rim to win campaign where several people participates and many prices are won from televisions, radios, cars and cookers.
Apart from these, there is community support and Tim Horton children foundation under Ron Joyce for underprivileged children. Finally, Tim Horton has emerged as the Canadian culture and icon. It has represented the lives of Canadian and identity. This follows its plan of rolling out its chains throughout the nation.
Tim Horton corporate strategy is aimed at maximizing its growth especially in the USA. This they carry out by focusing on the human resource investment and market capital. By 2009, Tim Horton aim was to set into the USA to provide its quick restaurant services. This was despite the strong competitors and market challenges with companies like Riese Organization and Dunkin’ Donuts.
The operation of the company into the new market is aimed at its mission of delivering superior quality products and services for guest and communities through leadership, innovation and partnership and the mission of being quality leader on everything the company does.
Horton’s have a well defined marketing strategy which is aimed at giving quality product. It is commitment to providing quality freshest product in its chain. This includes providing coffee, baked foodstuff and beverages which are not older than twenty minutes.
Molloy Whelan of TDL Group once claimed, “You have to stand to your brand. Who Tim Horton innately and is what it stand for is it is ‘always fresh’ proposition.” This is in line with is vision of giving quality products to the customers (Tim Hortons, 2011, p.1).
In addition, the company has created a brand loyalty to the customers by the marketing team that meet Canadian taste of cleanliness, neighborly, trustworthy and frugal. T
he company also has strong quality standards for its products that follow their values. Molloy once put it that “ in everything we do we have always focused on the concept of friendly, unpretentious, gently playful, good neighbor you would want to live down the block with you” (Hakan, 2004, p.76).
Tim Horton Company has applied two models in its strategic marketing. These are the embedded and historical data model and no measurement and marketing model in developing its strategic marketing (Husting, 2010, p. 124).
The Embedded Marketing Model
No Measurement, No Marketing Model
The two modes have been found to be the simplest to understand and uses in the organization. In addition, they fit the needs of Tim Horton whose aim is to create more market into the USA.
It has been seen that the application has been useful in handling the products and meeting customers’ needs (Hakan, 2004, p.78). The models allows the company to gather enough information with the use of no marketing, no measurement model.
The company uses these information to evaluate potentiality of the market their size, purchasing power, competitors’ analysis and the available niches. Tim Horton has applied this strategy to open its segments and make decisions regarding implementation of the plans.
The data gathered using the embedded marketing model is used in product positioning especially in the new segments and high competitive grounds. The process is continuous to make necessary adjustments in the respective segments (Redpath, 2011, p.4).
Tim Horton organization has developed different tactics to service in its market despite stiff competition from the pioneers and other followers. The company has a high focus on customers unsatisfied needs.
This is carried out through close market monitoring as well as creating brand loyalty (Tim Hortons, 2011, p.3). The company also has greatly focused on customers benefits of close accessibility, product and pricing to cover more market opportunities (Kotler, 2008, p.14).
The company’s promotion tactics are aimed at meeting the consumers’ demands on time price and quality. Buying has been made simpler for the consumers since the company carriers out home delivery as well as ambulatory services.
Tim Horton’s has created customer loyalty from its close follow-ups to the customers to note their satisfaction and make adjustments accordingly. The tactics applied by Tim Horton’s have met some of its strategies of developing customer’s loyalty as well as widening the market share (Husting, 2010, p.35).
Horton Competitive Strategy
Tim Horton chosen competitive strategy is niche penetration due to the company unique products have not been applied by the competitors. The quality of its products has also not been met by any of the competitors. In addition, Tim Horton has strong competitive structures and processes to gain the customers loyalty as well as wining others.
We intend to upgrade our facility and increase customer delivery service so that most of our clients can easily access our products (Kotler, 2008, p.25). The company maintains it competitive advantage analysis through carrying out competitors’ intelligence:
- Liaise secretly with the employs of the competitors for more information.
- Using our competitors clients to get the information
- Sending our loyal customers to the competitors to get the relevant data.
- Taking observation on their operation system
- Studying their web site for more information
This strategy will enable the organization maintain its market segment through creating customers loyalty. Advancement is also very easy penetration, as it will enjoy the monopoly of its limited and unique products. Through this, Tim Horton will easily meet its goal of market expansion (Husting, 2010, p.46).
To meet its goals successfully, Tim Horton has set objectives that drive its workers as well as its operations. The objectively are clearly stated to help all their stakeholders understand the working procedures (Canadian Press, 2009, p.1). The following are some of the objectives formed by the company in 2010:
- To create 600 stores in Canada and 300 in USA
- To creates expansions in Universities, Hospitals and Airports.
- To create more co-brands in USA chain especial in ice cream.
- To test new bakes in the USA in at least ten stores.
The company has developed the objectives based on their achievability, measurability and specificity. The company has drawn an action plan based on objectives specifying the priorities given to each marketing expert, who is working on them and specific end term goals. To achieve the goals there are follow up mechanisms for the products and the activities.
To identify the growth opportunities, our organization took a consideration of product, price, place, promotion, people, physical evidences, and process. We identified the market niches in the areas. This was easy since the company is a follower organization so analysis could be based on the pioneer’s mistakes as well as uncovered areas. It has a well-developed ambulance and other transport system (Rodgers, 2003, p.56).
In addition, the company has advantage of financial resources that enables it to carry out advertisements to its products through the media and publication to reach as many customers as possible. Due to the financial opportunity, the company will be able to acquire the best-trained personnel and provide incentives to our loyal customers.
We also have the best structures with well-equipped facility (European International, 1998, p.27). In addition, we have proper policies to run our processes effectively for perfect outcome. Our policies are structures that limit bureaucratic measures, which might cause delays during service provision. These were identified after a SWOT analysis in the organization (Rodgers, 2003, p.59).
Tim Horton has many internal strengths that will enable it operate successfully in this market. With the application of SWOT analysis the company has market strengths in the following areas; it has a strong financial back up that will enable it develop market purchasing power and enjoy the economies of scale (Rodgers, 2003,p.121).
With well-trained personnel, the organization will enjoy efficient management and produce quality unique products in the market. The values and organization culture form a great strength of this company penetration into the market. Finally, being the first company to develop fast food restaurants in some areas, it expects to enjoy a large market in the future (Husting, 2010, p.54).
External Environmental Factors
As a follower marketer operating in unique products from the pioneers in new areas, there are several challenges in the market. Tim Horton will need a lot of finances to promote and win its customers from the pioneers who have developed customers’ loyalty (Rodgers, 2003, p.58).
Apart from this, the company has to fight restrictive legal measures in the monopolized market by the pioneers. Pulling perfect labour is also a challenge since the health organizations in the field are huge companies with better incentives. Breaking market barriers by the pioneers as well as staying ahead of the competitors is one of the challenges this company is facing (Kotler, 2008, p.26).
Response to Emerging Themes
In this follower strategy with niche marketing style, Tim Horton strategic measures challenge such as changes in consumer tastes, competition system and economic dynamics (Redpath, 2011, p.2). The company is undertaking a lot of research to identify marketing trends that will keep it more dynamic to respond to the challenges (European International, 1998, p.67).
The management body has well trained personnel who carry out proper monitoring and environmental scanning. In addition, there are contraction and expansion strategies of the organization, depending on prevailing economic situations (Husting, 2010, p.47).
Niche marketing and expansion for followers is not always easy for companies to execute, for organizations like Tim Horton need proper machinery for evaluating their decisions as well as advancing. This calls for unending research in the market needs as well as emerging trends.
It is also recommended that the company should recruit experts who carry out close supervision on the customers’ needs for identification of consumer satisfaction. This is the only sure way of gaining customers’ loyalty as well as expanding market segments.
Marketing today involves a lot of challenges due to the advancement in technology as well as ever changing economic system. Due to this, many companies like Tim Horton have developed strategic marketing measure to keep them survive in the market.
Strategic marketing approach analysis of the market structures, processes and outcomes allow operators to work in a non-blanketed field. Strategic marketing draws modes of approaching the goals through informed choices and customer oriented marketing. Through this, marketing organizations can strategically plan how to meet the marketing challenges.
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