Marketing Plan

Marketing Plan

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Marketing Plan
Introduction.

I have been commissioned by the manager of Scottish lemonade ltd as a marketing consultant to conduct research into their product range and markets and report back to him on the findings. Due to the lack of their marketing expertise they requested a report to include any ideas and suggestions as to how the research can help the company expand its sales in the future. Scottish lemonade ltd also require me as a marketing consultant to help them develop their existing products, expand into future markets and advise on the creation of new product ranges for the company.

A discussion that illustrates the interdependence of key marketing activities in the development of a marketing programme.

When developing any marketing programme one of the first things a marketer must do is good market research. This involves collecting information on all aspects of a business’s environment. This involves information on existing and prospective customer’s needs, wishes, desires and wants. As well as any other characteristics that could help identify your target market such as the age, sex, religion, location and buying behaviour of your customers. Research into suppliers, intermediaries and competitors is also relevant as it can give your company an advantage over similar companies. The better the quality of market research, the easier and more effective a marketing strategy.

The reason market research is done is basically to identify who your customers are (both present and future) and what their needs and desires are so you can best fulfil them.

Once the market research has been done and a marketer has a clear view of the nature of the customers needs and wants then they can go on to orientate a product toward them. This is done through the use of the marketing mix which is product, price, promotion and place. These are considered when marketing a product towards a group or groups. A marketer will consider a strategy for each of the sections depending on their target market. An example of this would be if one was orientating a product towards a market segment of lower incomes then a price would be altered to what they believe to be acceptable as when marketing towards a wealthier group a marketer would charge a premium price as they may see it fit to pay a more premium price. This is why market research is so interlinked with the marketing mix as without proper research one cannot know who or how best to target a market.

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Identification of the main issues to be considered when marketing an organisation

In all business environments there are factors which affect the business’s workings. Some of these can be beneficial and others detrimental. The job of a marketer is to asses and evaluate all of them in order to give the company the best possible chances of avoiding the pitfalls and exploiting the opportunities. These can be broken down into internal and external factors with internal being factors within your business environment which you generally have control of such as staff, advertising, product and producing decisions. The external factors are sub-divided into micro and macro-envrromental factors. The micro environmental factors are all affecting factors in your business’s immediate environment such as suppliers and intermediaries. A business usually exerts some control over this section but generally not much. The macro environmental factors are summed up in the acronym PESTLE which stands for political, economic, sociocultural, technological legal and economic. All these factors due to their nature are outwith any control of the business and can have a huge influence and yet are hard to predict, however they should be carefully explore for any possible problems or opportunities. An example of a benefit form the PESTLE factors could be a technological advance which would make the manufacturing of the product cheaper, while a disadvantage could be that new EU regulations force high sugar content food items to have some sort of waning label, which would be a legal.

In the case study it is clear that sociocultural effects of healthy living are affecting Scottish lemonade ltd as people are more conscious about high sugar and fat levels in food and drinks as they are blamed for a range of illnesses, tooth decay and obesity. A marketer would identify this not just as a problem but as a potential opportunity as they could expand into the market of healthy drinks which are up and coming and the flipside of this sociocultural trend.

Internal factors which could have bearings on the company in the case study could be the company’s own financial situation as without good funding a company may not be able to afford a good marketing campaign.

Key marketing information required to develop a marketing plan

To develop a marketing plan or strategy there is a whole range of information necessary. Firstly and fore mostly market research on your target market is essential as without it you cannot properly aim your efforts to the right people. A company should also have researched their competitors to see how they work and what can be learned from their successes and failures. Information on suppliers and intermediaries is also beneficial, details of how they run their own businesses are helpful so as to correctly synchronise with them. Information gathered from marketing information systems can be used to huge benefit in not only the planning stage but all throughout the task as the data gathered is continuous and can be used to show how effective certain changes are in sales and buying trends. All the information a marketer sources before developing a plan is important as it gives a marketer a group to target and information on them to use, to effectively market towards them.
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