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Marketing research is a process that enables producers, consumers and end users of products to be linked to the marketer through information collected and used to identify and define marketing opportunities and threats (Van, 2017). In addition, marketing research enables a better understanding of characteristics and preferences of customers, identification of opportunity that increase sales and business growth, monitoring competition in the market, recognition and planning for problems, and reducing risk that inform business decision making process. The goal of marketing research is to identify and examine how the change in the marketing processes affects consumer behavior.
The major purpose of marketing research is to provide business management with appropriate up-to-date market information (Van, 2017). Numerous strategic and tactical decisions are made by business managers during identification and satisfaction of consumer needs process. Decisions on market segmentation, marketing program’s planning and implementation, potential opportunities, and target market selection, performance and control are thus made by marketing managers from the help of marketing research. Alternatively, managers are able to link the market variabilities with environment and consumers since research helps in fixing uncertainty by providing reverent information about variable environments and consumers (Van, 2017).
Apart from research market being used to collect a concreate feedback about products and services, the opinions from the collected information can be used to modify business plan. For business to exclusively thrive and be successful, extensively knowledge, extensive knowledge about consumer and competition is required. Acquiring such specific and accurate information about competition and consumers is an important step in developing a marketing plan (Van, 2017). For instance understanding the customer needs and desires and developing promotional material that will catch customer’s attention and ensuring delivery are important steps in developing a marketing plan.
The Impact Competition is having on the Favorite Product
In today’s world, Coca-Cola remains one of the most preferred beverages in the global market (Tagged, 2017). The product is having a strong distribution system that enables its access in all parts the world. Notably, as a drink, Coca-Cola faces stiff competition from other products. One of the biggest Coca-Cola competitors is Pepsi from Pepsi Company. Another competitor is Red bull, which is a strong drink manufactured by Australian company. Red bull has gained popularity due to its adoption in pub culture and the ability to be mixed with other drinks.
Direct competition enabled the Coca-Cola Company to come up with various marketing strategies for it to be able to remain the top brand. One of its approaches is through developing high quality products and reinventing the old ones. The company also has 400 brands in 200 markets hence its global competitive advantage (Tagged, 2017).
Additionally, the Coca-Cola employed a well-developed production system, thus ensuring having greater profit margins, which keeps the business sustainable and still manage to sell at affordable prices despite the stiff competition from other players. Further, the competition has led the company to solicit for better distribution system, hence making it highly competitive. Coca-Cola Company ensures it reaches all its consumers at grass root level. For instance, the company distributes Coca-Cola products even in the remotest areas of African continent (Tagged, 2017). Distribution network of Coca-Cola enables it to be recognizing all over the world.
The company has also developed effective advertisement techniques, which helps it get recognized well in the market. Proper investment in advertisement industry has also helped promote Coca-Cola products, hence boosting its competitiveness. Unlike its competitors, the company channels more resources on advertisements, thus gaining popularity for its products.
Effects of PESTEL the Introduction of a New Product in the market
In the global perspective, Apple is considered as the most successful product in the market. The performance is due to effective ways of addressing external factors in the firm’s macro-environment. The company also employs various strategies that exploit several market opportunities, while protecting it from threats. PESTEL analysis is a tool that describes and gives an overview of different macro-environmental factors. The tool is important since it analyses external environmental factors, thus identifying strengths and weaknesses of a product.
In most cases, political factors in Apple business present opportunities. Under PESTEL framework model, political factors show how politically-related issues influence business operations. Lombardo (2017) observes that improved free trade policies and stable politics in developing countries provide opportunity in Apple’s case, hence giving it favorable market environment to thrive.
Generally, most of economic factors in the company’s macro-environment generate opportunities. In this aspect, industry and market conditions that impact on the firm is indicated. Stability of economies in the developed nations and increased development in third world countries are some of the most significant factors for successful products entry in the market (Lombardo, 2017).
Rising mobile access and increasing use of social media provides opportunity to the business. In addition, the social analysis aspect illustrates the social influences on customer behaviors and expectations. The popularity of mobile access and of internet has increased the demand for Apple digital device products.
Currently, technologies and technological changes impact on the business conditions. In the case of Apple, cloud computing trend, technological integration and growth in apps market provides greater opportunities for the business to thrive (Lombardo, 2017). Based on this factor, the company has a greater platform to exploit the advantages for its success.
Sustainable business, energy efficient products, and labor rights trend present opportunities to Apple products through recycling and related programs through which the company seeks to maintain business sustainability. Apple is taking steps to ensure that customer perception about the products is improved
The factor illustrates the impact of laws or regulations on business. Increasing privacy and telecommunications regulations creates threats to the Apple business (Lombardo, 2017). Imposing of privacy and stricter telecommunication regulations to digital technology use creates challenges of developing products that involve transmission of private information for Apple.
SWOT Analysis and its Use in the Marketing Plan
SWOT analysis refers to an activity carried out in a company to evaluate strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and potential threats within a company with the aim of providing competitive insight in the issues that might affect the general performance (Frue, 2016). Companies use SWOT analysis to determine what may help them accomplish their objectives and which obstacles or challenges they must overcome to achieve desirable results. Through SWOT analysis, an organization is able to distinguish between where it is today and where it aspires to be in the near future, as well as taking into account any potential favorable or unfavorable conditions that relate to its products. The system links information to environmental assessment, separating external and internal factors.
Generally, the analysis helps a business in determining if present factors will assist an organization achieve specific objectives. While SWOT is highly useful in developing and confirming organization’s goals, identification and assignment of factors that may impact on the organization remain its primary goal in providing an objective and an in-depth study of the business (Frue, 2016). Strengths are internal factors which are positive attributes within the control of an organization. Resources, the competitive benefits, capability, and positive traits within the workforce are examples of strengths within an organization.
Weaknesses are negative factors that are within the company’s control, but distract company’s ability to be able to maintain competitive edge, thus diminishing overall product success. Some of examples of weaknesses could include limited expertise, inadequate resources, and little access to technology among others. On the other hand, opportunities are external factors that represent the conditions in an organization, which might be used to improve its position (Frue, 2016).
Finally, threats are those external factors beyond control and have potential to put marketing strategy and plan at risk. The most common threat of any business is competition. However, unsustainable price fluctuation and high rate of government regulation also threatens a company. SWOT helps in the formulation of a back-up plan that would enable the company to effectively address these issues, should they arise.
Segmentation, Targeting and Positioning in Marketing (STP)
Marketing models enable various companies to increase their competitiveness and be able to plan, as well as serve customers’ desires (Moye, 2016). Segmentation, targeting and positioning in marketing (STP) is marketing framework that helps to divide group of buyers in different variables, enabling them to come up with market characteristics, as well as identifying the best segment and the way to attract customer and maximize profit. Coca-Cola is the leading beverage company in the world with almost 200 brands in 400 countries across the entire globe. The company focuses on diversified products within and outside the beverage industry, and customer service value is their priority.
Brand loyalty is one of the trends in Coca-Cola Company. The company uses consumers as its brand ambassadors. Fans and their customers support the company through marketing, especially the social media by the young people (Moye, 2016). Coca-Cola has more followers in the social media than their competitors. The company’s core value is customer satisfaction; it ensures that its clients afford, get the value of their money, while the products are of high quality, hence building consumer’s trust, which in return renders them loyal.
Coca-Cola offers their services according to age, geographical settings, income level family size and life style, which enable customers are satisfied, since different groups need different services (Moye, 2016). The company targets the youths aged 18-30, as they are many and they have influence on the markets. To ensure maximum profits, the company uses different methods to reach their wide range of customers. For example, to attract customers who require little sugar, they introduced coke with zero sugar, thus ensuring that the brand is still competitive and offers best options.
Brand management is one of important aspects of marketing in today’s world as it helps to improve customer insights over a product or services that are marketed. Moreover, it involves creating good customer relationships and association with product or service. However brand management can succeed or fail depending on either internal or external factors.
Successful Brand Management
Building successful management of brand requires an organization to distinguish itself from others by offering quality services that consumers would prefer. UNCCO is a leading company in United States that offers facility management services and which had successful brand management. The company markets healthy and environmental cleaning products. Internal factors and external factors, which includes giving of information, managing staffs, use of technology, and good consumer attitude led to success of UNCCO brand (Barker, 2017).
Internal factors include proving information about UNCCO activities through messaging and education (Barker, 2017). They made marketing materials free and communicated to their obligation and their target market organizations. UNCCO branded their staff and sales persons through providing them with green clean kits that presented company’s obligation to the consumers.
External factors also influenced the success of UNCCO branding acceptance by consumer (Barker, 2017). UNICCO services were preferred by the majority of people, thus increasing customers. Notably, this has led to great success due to branding. Additionally, parents also help by teaching their students, thus enabling the UNNCCO to recruit them. Another factor was the use of technology, which raised the standards of their cleaning services, making the company competitive and offering quality services compared to other companies.
Failed Brand Management
Despite efforts to win the customers trust and loyalty, some companies may suffer brand fail even after they have marketed their products due to both internal and external factors. For instance, Samsung Company, in 2016 hundreds of Samsung galaxy note 7 reported cases of overheating (Dua, 2016). Samsung PR disaster was declared a public safety threat, which led to brand fail. Failed brand market by Samsung was accelerated by both the internal factors and external factors as illustrated below.
Internal factors included press corroborations, where Samsung may have had little relationship with the media. After the reports of Samsung galaxy note 7 batteries overheating, a lot of digital content was posted online criticizing Samsung brand (Dua, 2016). Other sectors such as Singapore airline, were telling their customers not to switch off or charge Samsung phones, which accelerated crisis on the brand. Samsung failed to employ good communication management within the company, thus failing to discover the problem before it occurred.
On the other hand, Samsung’s PR disaster was also caused by external factors, which the company had no control over (Dua, 2016). External factors included consumer attitude, technology and innovation, and the competitiveness of the market. Samsung devices were seen as threat to public safety due to reported cases of overheating of Samsung note 7, leading to consumers avoiding the products and criticizing them. Stiff competition from other brands was also another factor that led to Samsung brand being replaced: Other brands were perceived to offer alternative and better products with no issues like those of Samsung (Dua, 2016). Another external factor that led to fail in brand management was technology and innovation. The company did not employ appropriate technology to produce the best results, thus negatively affecting the company’s image.
Barker, S. (2017). 6 Brands That Nailed Their Product Launches (And What You Can Learn From Them). Pro blogger, 15(6), 3-4.
Dua, T. (2016). The biggest brand fails of 2016. Digiday.
Frue, K. (2016). Applying SWOT Analysis in Your Marketing Plan. Pestelanalysis.
Lombardo, J. (2017). Apple Inc. PESTEL/PESTLE Analysis and Recommendations. Panmore Institute, 18(3), 28-46.
Moye, J. (2016). Coke's James Quincey on 3 Trends Shaping the Global Retail Industry. Coca-Cola Journey, 6(3), 3-5.
Tagged, B. (2017). 11 Top Coca cola competitors – Competitor analysis of Coca cola. Brand competition, 4(7), 6-9.
Van, Meagan. (2017).Why is Marketing Research Important to Developing a Marketing strategy? Bizfluent.
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