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The aim of this report is to have detailed look over marketing activities and explain the concepts and process of marketing activities. In order to explain the practical implications of each concept, Coca-Cola has been chosen. Coca-Cola is an international organization and has its operations in more than 200 countries with more than 500 brands.
The concepts and process of marketing of Coca-Cola
According to Kotler’s definition marketing is a process by which organizations gain their objectives through the production and exchange of products and worth with others. It is about understanding the expectations of customers and ensures that services or products are meeting the potential needs or expectations of customers. Marketing is looking up the ways to influence customers’ behaviors (Dransfield et al., 2004). Therefore, marketing process includes anticipation of needs, strategic planning, identifying ways of coordination with customers and satisfying their needs. Moreover, it is also the process of relationship building, product development, pricing, distribution, sourcing, and so on so forth (Weitz & Robin, 2002).
The marketing process of Coca-Cola includes a wide range of activities in order to influence customers and to satisfy their potential needs such as the development of new products and extension of existing ones. Coke markets and advertises its products to make strong relations with customers.
The company has done several innovations and strengthen its distribution and sale capabilities to provide customers with the convenience to access coke. The company designed the packaging and designing strategies to attract customers; on special occasions, company offers special deals (Coca-Cola Company, 2015). The company introduced low calories drinks that could meet the needs of customers by analyzing the increasing trend of healthy food and beverage consumption practices. The company made innovation in advertising and packaging style by introducing “share a coke campaign” that was a huge success in gaining UK customers’ attentions (Cocacola UK, 2014).
Benefits and cost of marketing orientation for Coca-Cola:
Organizations that apply the marketing concepts are known as market orientation. An organization is known as market-oriented if well-coordinated decisions and made and executed by the functions and divisions with a dedication sense. If the information has an influence on every function of the corporation and tactical and strategic functions are formulated inter-divisionally and inter-functionally; it represents the better-quality skill in pleasing and understanding customers.
Coca-Cola is a market-oriented company and known for its market orientation (Weinstien, 2004) because it organizes its services, products, and activities around the needs and wants if consumers rather focus on its product. Market orientation does not come without cost; it includes the major cost of scarce resources such as people, place time, money and so on. The more the organization will spend on marketing activities, the more it will remain with less finance to spend on other functions. However, in case of Coca-Cola Company does not need to spend on other departments more because the company has established a system.
Market orientation served Coca-Cola with enormous benefits such as it helped organization to put the consumers first that is pivotal to sustainability, market orientation enabled company to create superior value for its customers and led company to increased performance; the benefits of customer orientation can be visualized by its larger share of beverage market. However, the cost of market orientation can be observed by the analysis of financial statement that clearly indicated that when company spent on selling and admin expenses, revenue of the company increased (Bloomberg, 2015).
Segmentation, targeting and positioning in organization:
Segmentation is a method of separating total market into segments based on common needs and desires. For example, Coca-Cola initially used to offer a single product to overall target market. However, later the company realized the different choices and preferences of customers and divided its market into different segments. These markets are dividedd based on customer’s preferences and target its audience on the basis of demographics (Kazmi & Batra 2009). The company offers diet and Zero Coke for those who are health conscious and offer Coke to those who like a strong taste. Moreover, Coca-Cola offered minute made for children.
Target marketing is the process of deciding that which segment to chase that can be served best; Coca-Cola target market is wide because company runs different commercials that represent people from the age of 10 to 40.
Positioning is the process of creating an image of the product in customer’s minds; Coca-Cola position products in fun loving and entertaining brands such as advertisement of sprite and different commercial of coke. The current slogan of coke in UK is “make it happy”, Coca-Cola, position its products by emotionally appealing people.
How macro and micro environmental factors influence marketing decisions.
Political environment of any country has a strong impact on marketing decisions. Political conditions such as taxes can affect advertisement decisions. Political environment is consists of government agencies and pressure groups that can limit the organization. For example, in some countries due to increased duties on imports resulted in increased the operational cost that results in decreased marketing budget. Rumors were spread that coke provide funds to Israel.
Economic factors also have an impact on marketing strategies such as increased inflation reduce the disposable income and in such case Coke marketing is based on pricing features rather fun loving.
Social factors include small groups, status, and family of customers. In an individualistic culture coke, market its brands as fun loving brand and in collectivist Countries Company does marketing based on emotion through presenting whole family in advertisement.
Technology has an immense impact on the marketing decisions of Coca-Cola; due to increased use of internet companies has a low-cost advertisement advantage again. Coca-Cola uses social media for marketing its products that offer company advantage of reducing cost.
Microenvironmental factors are the internal factors of the organization that makes a significant impact on marketing decisions. The best tool to analyze the microenvironment is Swot analysis.
Coca-Cola had strong brand equity and recognized as most valuable company in the world.
Company has a strong presence and largest market share; Coca-Cola has wider distribution network and acquires loyal customers that allow the organization to earn handsome amount that result in massive and effective marketing decisions.
Company’s competitors pose significant challenges to the organization that does not allow Coca-Cola to market its product as high price brand.
Company is absent in heath related drink that does not allow the company to market Coca-Cola brands as healthy brands.
Company has an opportunity to make diversification that will allow the company to make more profit and allow the company to enhance its marketing progress.
Company can enter into Heather drink market that would allow the company to market as healthier beverage company.
Threat of competition does not allow the company to market its product as high priced products.
Segmentation criteria to be used in different markets
Coca-Cola must use segmentation scheme that undertake the four P’s of marketing into consideration. Coca-Cola segmentation criteria should be based on measurability, substantiality, accessibility, and distinguishability (Lamb, Hair & McDaniel, 2010).
Market segments are measured based on sale volume of value. Coca-Cola should measure the number of consumers within each segment and should market the products in that segment, which contain larger numbers of customers.
Coca-Cola should target the substantial groups that will allow the company to target the mass of every country. Moreover, this can be done by targeting the different age and taste of groups.
Accessible and responsiveness:
In term of Coca-Cola it is crucial to know the ways group may be approachable and either it falls in the abilities and strengths of the marketing department of the company. Coca-Cola can target the segment through logical criteria.
Targeting strategy for Coca-Cola:
There are three major targeting strategies such as differentiated, undifferentiated, and concentrated. Coca-Cola’s Coke should use differentiated marketing strategy.
Influence of buyers’ behavior on marketing activities in different situations
Buyer behavior refers to the buying behavior of the final customer who purchases goods or services for final consumptions. Several factors affect the buying decisions of customers, and these behaviors result in affecting the marketing activities. For example, currently corporate social responsibility practices are taking hype that allows organizations to market their sustainability efforts. Cultural factors have an impact on the buying behavior of customers that result in such advertisements in which emotional appeals are performed. In some regions, buyer prefers to buy products having discounts and such behaviors affect marketing activities.
Proposed positioning strategy for Coca-Cola:
Positioning strategies can be divided into two segments one is a single brand positioning strategy and second is multiple brands positioning strategy. The focus of Coca-Cola is on single brand positioning strategy that present it as undifferentiated company. Coca-Cola should use multiple brands positioning strategy by marketing its other products as well that would result in enhanced market share and growth (Sahaf, 2008).
The extended marketing mix and its elements.
Product development for the sustainability of competitive advantage:
Coca-Cola is a well-renowned brand and has huge brand loyalty, but it dies not mean that company can sustain without having any differentiation. Coca-Cola acquires related differentiation strategy to be competitive in the marketplace. This strategy serves customers through offering products that meet their needs such as zero coke, minute made for sweet drink lover and offer a wide range for different people.
Product distribution for customer convenience:
Distribution strategy plays an important role in product success if customers do not have access to product they will switch to another brand. Coca-Cola distribution network is strong; company sales its products through distributors, retailers, and wholesalers. There are different points of sale where Coca-Cola products are available such as AMTs, petrol stations, corner stores, groceries, restaurants, nightclubs, supermarkets, and cafes.
Price as a reflection of organization’s objective and Conditions:
The objective of the organization is to refresh the world by providing them with value and create a difference. Coca cola sets its pricing strategy around its competitors. Coca-Cola has acquired different pricing strategies in different countries, but the major objective of the company is to enhance the shareholder's value; therefore, company should acquire the penetration strategy that will attract the mass.
Integration of promotional activities to achieve marketing objectives:
Promotion is an important aspect of the marketing mix that results in enhanced value if done accurately. Promotion involves sale promotions, personal selling, advertising, and public relation. Objective of most organizations is to enhance the returns and so as of Coca-Cola as mentioned in its mission statement. Therefore, company should continue to follow the television commercial strategy, as well as company, must acquire radio promotion and print media strategy. Company should place billboards by acquiring different themes.
Sale promotion: Company can issue discounts coupons or can offer special deals as Coca-Cola apply this technique on special occasions.
Coca-Cola does not need to use personal selling or public relation technique because company has already built its image, and above two strategies will be enough to gain increased market share and profitability share.
Analysis of extended marketing mix of Coca-Cola:
Extended marketing includes additional 3P is in the list of existing four such as people, process, and physical environment.
People of organization include customers of product that are based on income, interest, gender, and age. Coca-Cola targets people from the age of 10 to 40 and interest in fun.
Process explains the procedure of the manufacturing process and distribution process. In other words, process from which product moves to the customers.
This includes the marketing strategy that clearly communicates the value of the product. Coca-Cola is clear in their marketing messages and its online presence, images, review, articles, contents, and videos enough to satisfy customers.
Applications of the marketing mix in a different context
Marketing Mix For Two Different Segments Of The Consumer Market
Market segments can be divided based on regions; Coca-Cola products are used in Asia and Europe at broader level.
Marketing mix for Europe:
Products: due to climate change, highly saturated market of beverage, decreased disposable income the growth of coke is hard in Europe, therefore, company should make unrelated diversification by entering into snake's market.
Price: Company should use competitive pricing strategy in this region.
Place: Here the distribution network should be wider; company must distribute its products through malls, stations, supermarkets, retailers, and wholesalers.
Promotion: Coke can use internet marketing, billboard promotion, and discount sale strategies.
Marketing mix for Asia:
Product: In most Asian countries, people have an improvement in disposable income such as India, China, Pakistan, and Japan, so the product has chances of growth. People do not have health preferences as compared to Europe, therefore; the major brand coke will succeed.
Price: In most Asian countries, the focus of people on lower cost product, therefore, the penetration strategies should be used.
Place: In term of distribution, most appropriate channels are retailers and wholesalers.
Promotion: In Asian countries, promotion can be done through sale promotions and television advertisements rather focus on print media and billboard.
Difference in marketing products and service to business:
If the organization is marketing the products to business rather to market to customers then ways will be different. Such as when the products will be marketed to the customers the focus will be on transaction’s value maximization; however, in case of business focus will be on maximizing the value of relations. In the case of business target market will be small, bargaining power of organizations will be higher, may have to follow multiple step process, the major focus will be in product performance rather to personal benefits.
Difference in international and domestic marketing:
Companies have to face multiple differences in the international market as compared to domestic. Coca-Cola has to face import taxes on raw material, acquire different marketing strategies and currency issues. International market will allow broader space to grow and allow the organization to enhance the presence of the brand as compared to the domestic market.
In this report, marketing activities has been considered in detail by targeting Coca-Cola. The report discusses the marketing concepts, targeting strategy, segmentation and positioning, it offers marketing mix for two different regions and explains the extended marketing mix. Each section of the report contains considerable and worthwhile information.
Bloomberg BusinessWeek. (2015). Coca-Cola Enterprises. Retrieved March 7, 2015 from http://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/financials/financials.asp?ticker=CCE
Coca-Cola Company. (2015). Strategy and Competitive Advantages. Retrieved March 7, 2015 from http://www.coca-colafemsa.com/femsa/web/conteudo_en.asp?idioma=1&conta=44&tipo=27617
Cocacola UK. (2014). The Share A Coke Story. Retrieved March 7, 2015 from http://www.coca-cola.co.uk/share-a-coke/share-a-coke.html
Dransfield, R., Fox, E., Guy, P., Needham, D & Wilde, J. (2004). Business for Foundation Degrees and Higher Awards. UK Heinemann
Kazmi, H.S & Batra, K.S. (2009). Advertising And Sales Promotion. New Delhi: Excel Books India.
Lamb, W.G., Hair, F.J and McDaniel, C. (2010). Marketing 4. USA: Cengage Learning.
Sahaf, A.M. (2008). Strategic Marketing: Making Decisions for Strategic Advantage. New Delhi: PHI Learning Pvt. Ltd.
Weinstien, A. (2004). Superior Customer Value in the New Economy: Concepts and Cases, Second Edition. US: CRC Press.
Weitz, A.B & Robin, R. (2002). Handbook of Marketing. India: SAGE.
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