Principles Of Marketing: Consumer Behavior And Marketing Action Essay

Question:

Describe about the Principles of Marketing for Consumer Behavior and Marketing Action?

Answer:

Introduction

This report aims at examining the concepts of principles of marketing and thoroughly explaining the marketing activities. Marketing is one of the integrated activities in an organisation (Schultz, 2003). It usually involves plethora of activities concerned with determining the needs of the consumers and eventually providing them what they want (Assael, 1984). It includes four core elements called 4P’s comprising of product, price, place and promotion. Hence, marketers consider carrying out market research as one of the critical starting points to determine what customer needs with respect to the 4Ps (Schultz and Braun, 1998). In an organisation, a marketing department is usually responsible to carry out marketing activities on behalf of the organisation (Andersen, 2014). This department works closely with new and existing product development to meet to the needs of customers. The product to be examined in this report is a local savoury snack which has been manufactured by a local savoury snack manufacturer. An informal report needs to be developed which will include how and why the marketing team of the manufacturing company will be advertising it.

Section 1

Marketing is one of critical steps of the strategic growth of an organization. After the strategic plan of an organization has been defined, the next big step is to carry out the marketing which will help achieving the objectives laid down in the strategic plan (Ang & Chua, 2012). As per (Ansoff, 2012), marketing process is defined as the process to analyse marketing opportunities, determining target market and developing the marketing mix effectively. The centre of the marketing process is occupied by the target customers (Schultz, 2002). A marketing process includes several steps such as examining the market opportunities, determining target market, developing the market and eventually, managing the marketing effort (Armstrong, Adam, Denize & Kotler, 2014). As far as UK snack industry is concerned, it is rapidly growing due to emergence of new trends. This has provided the local snack manufacturers with new ways to grow in a highly competitive market. As per government reports, the industry has witnessed a remarkable growth of 21.2% as of 2014 and it is expected to grow in similar fashion by 2018 (Reuters, 2014). Considering the above discussion about the marketing process, the procedure to be adopted for the marketing of local savoury snack is s follows.

Determine marketing opportunities: The first step to plan about conducting marketing activities for local savoury snack is to determine market trends first. As far as snack industry in UK is concerned, it has made huge profits as of 2013. The snack consumption rose by 5.8 % which had given a clear indication of rising trends of the industry. Reports suggest that the increasing value of total retail sales in the snack market in spread in three sectors. People in UK consider potato chips as the most famous snacks (Reuters, 2014). For this, companies have been doing in-store promotions depending upon the saturation level. However, with time, people have started demanding variety in snacks and also considering its dietary value. Therefore, it is evident that there is a potential buyer market for local savoury snack.

Determine market trends:

The second step is to determine the market trends of the UK industry. Foremost, consumers in UK demand safe and healthy snacks. As per a report, consumers now-a-days are interested in natural and organic food which are rich in nutritional value. Hence, snack companies reduce salt and fat content in their foods (Reuters, 2014). The same has been followed for this new snack in which the makers have lowered salt content in the snack making it nutritionally high. Secondly, with changing time, consumers are being very aware about the food nutritional and calorie content (Davidson, 2015). Hence, there is a dire need that makers share the nutritional information of this new snack to build credibility. Then people in UK are increasingly becoming aware about the food that has less impact on the environment. Makers of this new snack need to ensure that the packaging and manufacturing of this product do not harm the environment at all.

Select target market: The third step to develop efficient marketing activities is to select a target market for the product. For this snack, the company will be targeting the consumers in the age group 10-30 years. However, marketers can adopt market segmentation to target appropriate customers. Within marketing segmentation, the marketers can group customers with similar needs, behavior and characteristics (Berger and Nasr, 1998). For local snack company, the marketers can target people who seek potato snacks since this new snack has high levels of potato. Besides this, other key concept of marketing is targeting. For the marketing to be efficient, the marketers will have to select appropriate targeting strategies (Bonoma. & Zaltman, 2011). The marketers can adopt ‘Concentrated’ marketing strategy for the new snack. In this concentrated strategy, the focus is on designing a promotional message that communicates the benefits needed for a single specific segment. For this snack, the targeting strategy will be placing ads on TV for kids, teenagers and professionals. Also, there will be billboards displayed across different places in UK. The third important concept is ‘positioning’ which aims at placing the product uniquely in the market (Urban, Hauser, and Urban, 1993). For this, the marketers need to adopt ‘Differentiated’ marketing strategy in which the new snack product should be able to attract the target audience in a unique way.

Develop a marketing mix: Once the strategic plan is developed, the next step is to develop a marketing mix. As per (Bagozzi, 1994), marketing mix is defined as the set of controllable marketing variables that an organization use to attract target audience. Marketing mix includes 4P’s including product, price, place and promotion. A detailed marketing mix for the new product is given in the later section of the report.

These are the crucial components of the marketing of the new snack. The industry is growing at a rapid pace and hence there are immense growth opportunities for this new product (Vargo and Lusch, 2004).

Section 2

This section outlines the STP for the new snack. As analysed above, there is a huge market for the snacks in UK especially potato snacks. However, other snacks including gourmet popcorn are also very popular (Davidson, 2015). Overall, this snack industry is rapidly increasing in UK. STP or segmentation, targeting and positioning is a three stage process which helps in establishing efficient marketing strategies. First, marketers determine what kinds of customers first. Second, marketers select which ones are best target audience to serve and thirdly, they implement the segmentation by optimizing products and services (Bracker, 2012).

Segmentation: It is the process of determining different kinds of consumers with different needs (Baker, 1991). For instance, customers may want different things from a product and hence marketers have to segment them as per their requirements. As far as new snack is concerned, it is intended for the people in the age group 10-25 years who often need snacks while they are on the go or relaxing at home. Since the snack industry in UK is highly competitive so there is no need to choose certain variables to segment the consumers. For this snack, preference for taste Vs low calories can be used as most critical variable. People who are seeking tasty snacks with high nutritional value will love this snack.

Targeting: It is the process of targeting one or more segments with appropriate targeting strategy (Berry, 1983). Since snack industry in UK is already established so it is challenging to appeal to such a segment. When selecting an appropriate targeting strategy, the factors such as acceptance of the segment, size of the segment, future prospects of the segment and strengths of the sector are vital. The snacks such as Kettle Chips are already very famous in UK so it is very difficult to convince people about this new snack. The targeting strategy for the new snack will be concentrated as it will focus on promoting the chips across one defined target market. The target market of this new snack will be consumers in the age group 10-25 years. As per a survey conducted by Food Standard Agency it has been found out that 79% of male and 86% of females consume chips and other snacks in this age group. Also, this is the target audience which can be effectively manipulated by emotive messages in the advertisements. This is the primary target group while there is a need to target secondary group as well with the adults in the age group 25-44 years. This target group do not consumer snacks as much as the primary consumers but cannot be overlooked (Webster, 1988). This new snack can serve as a convenient snack and can easily integrate into the lives of people who have less time to cook meals.

Positioning: It is the process of targeting the audience which has been selected in the targeting component (Capon, Farley & Hubert, 2014). Many companies select to position themselves as technologically advance, user-friendly, healthy and pick any other quality so as to position the product uniquely in the market. This quality of the product which positions the product uniquely in the competitive market differentiates the product from other similar products. Eventually, the product gets competitive edge among other products. The positioning process is depicted below.

Fig 1: Positioning Process

Source: Capon, Farley & Hubert, 2014

As discussed above, there is a need for snack manufacturer to position itself uniquely. For this, it is possible that this new snack positions itself as a healthy snack and entices consumers with its rich nutritional value. The consumers will be happy consuming a snack which is healthy and also tasty. There are competitive brands already in UK such as Kettle Chips which can give a tough competition to the new snack. However, marketing it as a healthy snack will beneficial as people will be happy consuming a nutritious snack.

Hence, this is the STP of the new snack. The analysis of the STP has shown that the target market of cane be divided into primary and secondary markets. This new snack will be targeted at the primary consumers in the age group 10-25 years. However, the secondary target market for the snack includes the adults in the age group 25-44 years. Therefore, all the marketing strategies should be centered about these target markets only.

Section 3

This section aims at analyzing the marketing mix of the new snack. Also we will be developing extended marketing for the new snack and examine how it contributes towards marketing of the project. As per (Churchill and Iacobucci, 2010) marketing mix is defined as a strategic process to examine the product, place, promotion, price and other components of the products. The product corresponds to the commodity which needs to be offered to the customer (Desai, 2014). It can either be a physical product or any service. The place corresponds to the place where the product will be made available to the consumers such as retail store, food outlet etc (Doyle, 2011). The price refers to the rate at which the product will be offered. The promotion corresponds to the marketing activities to be conducted for the product. These are the components of a regular marketing mix while there are three more components of an extended marketing mix (Feinberg, Kinnear & Taylor, 2012). These include people, physical evidence and process. The marketing mix of this new snack is as below.

Element

New Snack

Product

As per analysis done in earlier sections, it is quite evident that consumers in UK prefer eating healthy snacks which are environment friendly as well. This new snack is a healthy and rich in nutrients snack which is targeted at the customers falling the age group 10-25 years. However, for an organization, it is vital that they develop products which are able to provide a competitive edge to the company (Gummesson, 1987). Hence, the makers of the product should keep in mind that it is critical to cater to the needs of the target audience well. To gain competitive advantage, numerous strategies can be used by organizations such as leadership, diversification, focus strategy and differentiation (Gruen, Summers, and Acito, 2000). The makers of the new snack needs to adopt differentiation strategy so as to achieve the desired objectives and sustain in highly competitive market. Since this snack is healthy and is rich in nutritional value so it is able to differentiate itself from other products.

Place

The place where the product is provided by the company should be convenient for the people to access (IMP Group, 1982). It is critical that the place where the product is available is within the reach of the consumers. Hence, the new snack will be available in all leading supermarkets such as ALDI, Tesco and will be mass distributed. The company can also make the sack available at vending machines in public places like cinema halls, parks, malls so as to increase the exposure of the product. The snack will be placed at the middle shelves of the supermarkets so that consumers can see them and buy them.

Price

The prices of the products should be set in such a way that those are able to justify the value of the product (Kotler, 2012). Hence, organizations need to adopt intelligent pricing strategy for the products. There are different pricing strategies adopted by the companies including value-based, premium, penetration, skimming pricing strategy (Kotler, 1975). The pricing strategy adopted for this new snack will be psychological which will be depending upon on different situations. Since this new snack is available in different sizes so prices will vary. Also, the price of the snack at petrol pumps, convenience stores, cinema halls and other public places will be fixed. But it will vary in retail depending upon occasion. For instance, the makers can offer a discount on the snack on Easter. Hence, this is the price of this new snack in the highly competitive snack market.

Promotion

The promotional activity is vital to increase the reach of the product (Morgan and Hunt, 1994). The promotional activity to be adopted should be able to achieve various goals and objectives. The marketing activities need to specific so as to get integrated in the promotional objectives (Peter, Olson, and Grune, 1999). There are three key promotional activities suggested for the marketing of this new snack. First is to air the advertisement of the snack on TV to emotionally inspire the target audience. Second is to collaborate with cinema houses so that they can show the advertisement of the snack in the interval of the show. The third is social media marketing to reach the target audience. The consumers in the age group 10-25 years are active on social media. Hence these are some of the promotional activities decided for the snack.

People

People in the marketing mix are the target audience for the product (Parsons, Gijsbrechts, Leeflang, and Wittink, 1994). This new snack will be targeted at the primary consumers in the age group 10-25 years. However, the secondary target market for the snack includes the adults in the age group 25-44 years.

Processes

The processes include the key activities in the manufacturing and production of snack (Palmatier, Dant, Grewal, and Evans, 2006). The processes such as packaging, manufacturing, marketing comprise the key processes of the new snack.

Physical evidence

It is the environment by which consumers would be surrounding when consuming the product (Rothaermel, 2012). As far as this snack is concerned, the physical evidence will be retail stores, cinema houses or public places.

This is the marketing mix of the new snack which is to be rolled out by a local snack manufacturer. This marketing will contribute immensely towards the achievement of the marketing goals (Zeithaml, Bitner, and Gremler, 2010). Since the marketing mix has clearly out the product, the audience and intended promotional activities to be carried out for the advertising of the product, it is more like a marketing plan for the snack.

Conclusion

Overall, it can be said that marketing of a product is one of the critical activities carried by an organisation. There are plenty of things that need to be considered when forming marketing strategies such as segmentation, targeting and positioning. The market trends for snacks in UK depicts that the industry is rapidly growing due to which there is a huge scope for this snack. This new snack will be targeted at the primary consumers in the age group 10-25 years. Also, the makers will be placing it as a healthy snack in the market due to which people will be enticed to buy it and eventually it will get a competitive edge. Therefore, this report has analysed the marketing activities for the new snack and examined the market for it.

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