November 30, 2011
Presented to ________
Marketing Research 3167
Statement of Intellectual Honesty: _____________, _____________, _____________, ______________
Table of Contents
GNC Company Overview3
Merchandise and services offered4
Advertising and promotions7
Store design and atmospherics8
Use of Technology10
GNC Company Overview
General Nutrition Companies, INC. was founded in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania by David Shakarian in 1935 as a single, specialized, general health retail store (Histories, 2011). Since then, the company has experienced continuous growth in the nutritional supplements industry, NAICS code 445299 (Learning, 2011). GNC is the leading global specialty retailer of health and wellness products with a diversified, multi-channel business model that obtains revenues from product sales through company-owned retail stores, domestic and international franchise activities, third-party contract manufacturing, e-commerce and corporate partnerships.
GNC targets health conscious consumers of all ages who have interests varying from body building, nutrition, weight loss, and athletic performance enhancements or to any person who is interested in starting or maintaining a healthy lifestyle. GNC has made its market very broad by advertising to all people and providing specially trained employees with knowledge of all products that are carried. The stores are designed to be inviting to everyone from a young high school athlete to a middle-aged mother of two. The pro-performance line is geared towards athletes of all ages and the live well concept promotes overall healthy living to the average adult.
GNC offers customers the option to purchase their nutritional supplements from a specialty store rather than a discount store or superstore such as Wal-Mart. Unlike those stores, GNC offers knowledgeable employees who are available to assist the customers with all of their nutrition needs. As a specialized retailer of nutritional supplements, GNC’s brand and stores are positioned as “the premier resource for a world class offering of health and wellness products for every member of the family” (Release, 2009). The brand has a dominant marketing position by being more than twelve times larger than the nearest specialty retail competitor. Its brand awareness is highly recognizable by 94% of consumers surveyed and the brand is highly trusted with all of its products being FDA approved. (Franchising, #1 Nutrition retail franchise: GNC domestic franchising, 2011) GNC’s easily recognizable slogan “Live Well” has been used since 1995 and is a major contributing factor to GNCs 94% brand awareness. “Live Well” is used to recognize GNC stores as well as the products they sell. The strength of the GNC brand, combined with its stores and website, gives it access to consumers and uniquely positions the company to benefit from the favorable growth in the nutritional supplements industry and the health and wellness sector. (Reuters, 2011) To increase the strength of the brand, GNC has entered strategic alliances with Rite Aid to further promote the brand with its “store-within-a-store” franchise retailers, which help reach a more difficult consumer market that rarely shops at specialty stores. In 2010, GNC also entered into an agreement with PetsMart in connections with the development, manufacturing, and distribution of nutritional supplements for pets, enabling us to extend the GNC brand into the pet care market. (Reuters, 2011)
Merchandise and services offered
GNC sells products that are reported in four major categories including; sports nutrition products, diet products, VMHS (vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements) and other wellness products....