Marketing is an activity to promote offerings of an organisation with a motive to influence buying behaviour of targeted customers. You are asked to prepare a report containing all aspects related with the marketing. For this, following Learning Outcomes should be considered:
- Identify the processes and steps of marketing and how marketing environment, marketing research and marketing mix plays an important role.
- Analyse the development of marketing to develop customer value.
- Recognise relevant stakeholders and analyse their impact on different marketing activities of an organisation.
Marketing activities carried out by any firm acts as a spark of life for the organizations. It involves those set of activities that are linked with buying or selling of product and services by the company (Son, Lee and Kim, 2015). These days the firms normally adhere with a market driven approach in marketing which means the company has do things from the view point of consumers (Kotler and Armstrong, 2016). The present report has been prepared in essay writing format where focus is given on evaluating as well as analyzing the core areas of marketing followed by reflecting on the tactical” communication tools that were used for the study. Various company examples have thus been taken to assess the concepts of marketing in diverse areas.
Processes and stages of marketing including the role of the marketing mix
Carrying out marketing activities in company requires it to follow a set of stages. These steps are very essential in order to outline as well as provide a direct map about objectives of the firm in order to attain them in best possible manner (Kavoura, Sakas and Tomaras, 2017). The very first stage is to assess the available opportunities in the market which are in form of what are the needs and wants of the consumers that have not been satisfied by the rival firms. This can be done by carrying out effective market research so as to create of profile about customers, competitors as well as the general trends that can be of use to a company. On the basis of this, the firm can identify potential opportunities and proceed further.
For example, Kraft’s foods have done the same and won the hearts and minds of consumer by providing them with delicious meals. It has entered into traditional sweets market of India by its Cadbury Dairy milk; brought Oreo into china by making it less sweet and involving there icon Yao Ming (Pant, 2010). It thus tried to fill existing gap in the sweets market in both the nations.
These steps have given great success to the firm and also gave it recognition that the firm is careful about the wants and desires of consumers. The step to assess available opportunities can be done by carrying out effective market research so as to create a profile about customers, competitors as well as the general trends that can be of use to a company. On the basis of this, the firm can identify potential opportunities and proceed further. Kraft foods had to spend a lot of money on carrying out market research activities so as to assess the exact gap in the market (Lillqvist and Louhiala-Salminen, 2014). But all is good in the end if the strategy delivers profit figures that help in the long term future success. On other hand, Apple Company who has given products to consumers as per there needs have never conducted any market research. When Steve Jobs was asked about the same then he candidly replied that it is not the job of consumers to tell the company what is wanted by them (Flory, 2018). As there are situations many times when the consumers have never seen anything like that which has been made by the company. Inspite of not indulging in market research strategies the company was able to create opportunities for itself within the market and gave extraordinary products to the consumers.
The next stage is of selecting the target market which must be done in careful manner as it is true that a single company cannot satisfy the needs of all the segments (Son, Lee and Kim, 2015). However, Apple has made an attempt to target many segments in the industry which include teenagers who use its ipods; College and university students that prefer iPad's, MacBook's, iPhone's for recording notes. Then are the business people who have found that iPhone's, iPad's, MacBook's of Apple has aided in carrying out business activities for them. There is also a presence of young children and kids that use the products of Apple for learning games etc. then are the adults that find iPhones to be useful for making phone calls; getting access to map directions etc (Kotler and Armstrong, 2016). The firms are then required to positioning the product in the minds of consumers in comparison to rival firms (Malhotra and Peterson, 2014). For example, Indian consumer goods company, Patanjali has been able to serve the Ayurveda and natural product lovers of India and has positioned itself as a fully organic brand. This has created a situation of chaos in the Indian market where the company has launched its product but it has helped patanjali to attain great success (Shukla and Sanghavi, 2017). Overall it can be said that the positioning strategy has done wonders for the company and also affected the sales and profit figures of many national and international firms who are a rival to it. However it is also true that every firm of positioning strategy may not give success to all firms as was the case of Clairol shampoo that introduced its products in 1980s as Look of Buttermilk and Touch of Yogurt. This positioning approach did not go well with the consumers and it failed badly (Lillqvist and Louhiala-Salminen, 2014).
Development of marketing mix is the third stage of this process and has got a very crucial role to play in marketing activities of any company. It is a great tool to bring an increase in product portfolio by making minor changes in the offerings of company; pricing or promotional activity. For example, Maggi was initially launched in India as an instant noodles product and was able to create an entirely new product category (Kavoura, Sakas and Tomaras, 2017). But in the recent times it has also catered to the needs of health conscious segment and has introduced Atta noodles by making minor changes in the product (Shree, Gupta and Sagar, 2017). In the same lines, by including the components of the marketing mix, a firm can create value for consumers through quality product, associated price/discounts, distribution system as well as use of advertising campaigns. In the same lines, if a firm is able to utilize the 4 components of marketing mix as a tool then effective strategy can be built and right tactics can lead to accomplishment of objectives (Fill and Turnbull, 2016).
Last but not the least stage is of managing the marketing efforts which is done by assessing the market conditions along with internal strengths and weaknesses present in the firm. Then comes marketing planning which is all about developing specific strategies to fulfill the objectives followed by implementing the plan (Babin and Zikmund, 2015). You can either take do my assignment help from experts.
The role of marketing in creating value for customers
Marketing can be defined as a process of creating a message about the offerings of a company and communicating the message in a proper format. It has often been found to create value in the lives of consumers in many ways (Son, Lee and Kim, 2015). The very concept of marketing aids in finding out who the target market can be and the company can then form products as per the needs and wants of consumers (Lusch and Vargo, 2014). The marketers should thus take steps to increase their awareness about target market and those people who are most likely to purchase the product offering of the company. Focus should be given on age range, income levels, education, and location among others in order to assess the potential consumers. Once the markets has an idea about who the consumers are then targeting as well as subsequent value creation can be easy for them. Along with this, the product mix decisions come into account which must be in line with the needs of consumers (Lee and Vachon, 2016). This is a huge requirement as the need of consumers are changing at a rapid pace in the present times hence product mix decisions are required to be taken more than once to suit the preferences of buyers. Then only maximum value can be created for customers.
The marketing activities further aid in positioning the products in the minds of target market. If the positioning has been a proper one that value can be created for the consumers. Value can further be crated for consumers if Marketing communications lay emphasis on explaining the product features and how they can be used to the buyers. In this regard, Apple may have been able to market itself on the basis of its product beauty but it has done a good job in creating and communicating the overall benefits of its products to the users and thus consumer perceive the value they are most likely to receive from the products (McDonald and Wilson, 2016).
For example, when apple marketed iPhone then it showcased the innovativenss as well as creative features that came with the new model. It further focused on how the features will benefit the consumers. For instance, its updated screen was more scratch resistant and anti-reflective. The benefit for the consumer was in form of less scratches and easy viewing during direct sunlight. Apple shared this information and educated the users about new product thereby adding value for them (Son, Lee and Kim, 2015).
In affirmation with the above paragraph, it can be said that facts about the products are essential but the marketers must also help the clients in understanding as to why be there a need for new product. For example, it may be known that there are many iPhone suppliers in the markets and numerous choices are there in front of the consumers. But the job of Apple should be to make consumers believe as to why they must have the iPhone of apple in terms of being a perfect fit to their needs (Lee and Vachon, 2016). The iPhone can be marketed with respect to size, easily handling, design, stylish look and faster processing. Each of the elements must be communicated through marketing in such a manner that it is able to create a need for the user (Kavoura, Sakas and Tomaras, 2017). Other than this, the need for the product can further be created by communicating to the users that the present product has not been able to fulfill a particular need that will be done by new product. In this manner, value for user can further be created.
Other than this, value creation will never happen when things or the product I overcomplicated for the consumers. Hence simplicity is a good approach in this regard. For example, metro bank of UK follows a very clear and simple model being making it easy for the consumers. Hence consumer value in this bank is created by making everything done by them quite convenient for the consumers (Kotler and Armstrong, 2016). There branches have long working hours; it takes less time and efforts to open an account in the bank among others. This strategy has given healthy growth rates to the company and also added value in the life of consumers (Lillqvist and Louhiala-Salminen, 2014).
Stakeholder engagement and their impact on the marketing activities of an organization
Stakeholder engagement can be defined as the process by which a firm involves those individual who may be affected by the decisions made or can put an impact on the implementation of decisions. Hence the engagement of stakeholders also put an impact on the marketing activities done by firm. This is as carrying out proper communication with the stakeholders requires great deal of planning and companies that are enable to do so may disconnect with the audiences. Marketing is actually a means to engage with external stakeholders being the consumers. In the present times it can be done by the use of Social media and digital technologies that can offer various means to engage with the stakeholders. For example, blogging is a good means for engagement in current times and it also provides benefit to business. It helps to increase consumer awareness and at times also converts the leads into business clients. Other than this, social media can also act as a form of marketing activity to engage with stakeholders. The tools like Facebook, twitter and LinkedIn etc. can provide good opportunities to the company for informing the stakeholders followed by identifying there common interests. The stakeholder’s further get a chance to share their opinions and demands with the help of this the company can work on the product and service offerings (Kotler and Armstrong, 2016). On a negative note, it has further been found out that are very little studies on this topic and even firms in real life have thought of stakeholder engagement through marketing beyond the consumers. Online media of the firms seldom make an attempt to engage with other stakeholder being staff members, local communities, social groups or even the public institutions (Kavoura, Sakas and Tomaras, 2017). It is thus recommended that this aspect must not be overlooked by any firm.
Various tactical communication tools were used by me to generate awareness and interest in my project on marketing fundamentals. I first of all focused on creating publication for my project that was quite easy to read and understand. I focused on providing right information in my project so as to make it a quality report. Less focus was however given on expensive design and layout. This helped my readers to generate deep insights and also understand the core message that was conveyed through it. There can further be use of Social media marketing as a communication tool were project can be posted on one of the Facebook pages (Kavoura, Sakas and Tomaras, 2017). The public is most likely to go through it which will increase their awareness and interest in it. There will further get a chance to comment, like and share which will act as a means to attain the goal.
A new Communication Tool that has grown in terms of popularity in the present times is Blog. It is collection of articles, ideas and even facts as well as opinions which can be posted on internet by the author. Hence, in order to generate awareness and interest project, there can also be a formation of blog page were the project details can be posted and link to the same can also be attached. With the help go this blog, communication about the project can be carried out with colleagues etc. and it can also help in demonstrating ones expertise in the project. The need here however is to structure and organise the blog and also update it when any new data arrives.
There can further be use of a discussion forum were details about the project can be posted. This will help the people to carry out discussion on the projects and also share there viewpoints about it. The knowledge that has been generated through the comments can then be used to carry out necessary updating in the project.