Avon Calls on Foreign Market

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SUMMARY OF THE CASE STUDY
Avon, started its journey in the early 1886 is now the oldest and the largest marketers and manufactures of the beauty products. The advertisements from “Ding dong, Avon Calling” to “Hello Tomorrow” and from “You never looked so good” to the latest one “The Company For Women”, always helped Avon to improve its image and enhance the marketing strategies to serve the purpose. One of the amazing facts about Avon includes that it’s headquarter is situated in USA but major portion of its sales comes from outside North America. Avon has captured a huge market all over the world and its distributing the beauty solutions to almost all parts of the world. With Avon being a part of 112 countries, the company has approximately 6 million independent sales representatives. These representatives go door-to-door for selling these products. Fig 1 shows Avon business worldwide.

Fig1. Avon Business Distribution Worldwide
Avon decisions to create a highly distributed organization with regional and national new product development and supply chain operations was initially designed to increase time-to-market and speed of response to regional customers preferences. While that vision of decentralized efficiency and customer focus was a good one at the time, its actual performance is far below expectations and the duplication of effort is slowing down the entire corporation. The case shows how a highly decentralized marketing, new product development and merchandising organizational structure can become more of a liability than an asset however. The intent of this case analysis is to explain and recommend how Avon will be able to attain a higher level of efficiency and profits through more effective alignment of their research & development, new product development strategies, marketing, and ongoing supply chain operations to create a unified, global marketing strategy that will succeed.

QUESTION 1
The chapter describes different marketing orientations. Discuss the applicability of each to Avon’s international operations.

The five common marketing orientations are production, sales, customer, strategic marketing, and social marketing. The production orientation does not apply to Avon. Initially when Avon entered its first foreign market, it went to nearby Canada probably focusing on a sales orientation with little product adaptation. Today, Avon utilizes aspects of customer, strategic marketing, and social marketing in its global strategy. Avon modifies its products to meet specific customers’ needs such as technology-driven skin care products in Japan and including insect repellent in the Brazilian skin cream. Avon modified its distribution method, particularly in China, as part of the overall strategic marketing orientation. Avon’s social marketing orientation is part of its global image supporting women and their needs. Specific programs include fighting breast cancer and domestic violence.

This is basically the different business approaches that a company uses to meet the hidden needs of its customers. As per the definition Avon has used some global operations which has helped them meet their customers’ needs which are: the use of global products. This has boosted Avon market orientation in a way that the company is able to manufacture beauty products as per a certain country needs. For example; In Brazil, Avon manufacture moisturizers, sunscreen and insect repellent, but for Asia Avon manufacture skin lightening creams and in Japan they manufacture technology driven skin products. This helps Avon meet the needs of their clients comfortably.

The other marketing orientation that Avon uses is the aspect of global branding. This helps the company to inform consumers that their company is international thus increasing their credibility. It also helps the company to create global quality image while using uniform ingredients and packaging. This helps the company to...
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