Writing Assignment #3: Analyzing the Annual Report
There are three main goals of an annual report: to disclose company information, to maintain current shareholders, and to attract new investors. Walmart, the largest retailer in the world, uses both verbal and visual strategies to achieve not only the three main goals of an annual report, but to reflect the corporate culture and values that embody Walmart. Three strategies that Walmart uses to reflect their goals and values are repetition of their mission to “Save Money, Live Better™”, inclusion of interactive elements on each page, and addition of individual videos of the Walmart executives. The repetition of Walmart’s mission “Save Money, Live Better™” occurs throughout the entire Walmart Annual report. “Walmart's culture has been built on a common purpose: saving people money so they can live better” and variations of that same sentence occur in the “The CEO Letter”, in the “Chairman’s Message”, and in the “50-Year History”. Throughout the report it is reiterated that Walmart is offering the lowest prices in retail and providing services that increase their customers’ well-being. The “Walmart U.S.” and the “Global Responsibility” section of the report focus on how Walmart keeps prices low and increases customer, employee, company, and community value. The repetition of the mission “Save Money, Live Better™” reflects Walmart’s values and effectively communicates the goals and strategies of Walmart to current and potential investors. The inclusion of interactive elements in the report increase engagement with the site. The “CEO Letter” section is five pages long, but the ability to flip through the pages with the click of a small blue, yellow when clicked, button makes it easy to consume. Videos are included on the “Operating Segments”, “Walmart Stores”, “Chairman’s Message”, and “Video, Social & Apps” section and expand on the material within the sections, giving the information contained there more...
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