Marketing Strategy & Plan Development

Topics: Marketing, Strategic management, Marketing plan Pages: 39 (13533 words) Published: May 12, 2013
Chapter 1. Marketing strategy and marketing planning
Simply put, customers are no longer a given — the fact that company produces commodity doesn’t mean anyone will buy it. In order to continue to thrive, companies must acquire and keep customers. Because it is the only business function that deals directly with customers, marketing and sales has become an area of increasing focus for companies of all sizes. Every company conducts strategic planning through the course of its activity. The marketing strategy focuses on markets and customers and is just one part of business strategy. Business strategy takes a broader view that includes other business functions such as manufacturing and operations, finance, quality, purchasing and supply chain, and information and communication technology. For example, a business objective may be to increase sales. Marketing objectives to achieve this would be to reach new customers, promote repeat buying among existing customers and launch new products. [1]

1.1 Marketing strategy definition and purposes
Marketing strategy is a process that can allow an organization to concentrate its resources on the optimal opportunities with the goals of increasing sales and achieving a sustainable competitive advantage. [2] Marketing strategy includes all basic and long-term activities in the field of marketing that deal with the analysis of the strategic initial situation of a company and the formulation, evaluation and selection of market-oriented strategies and therefore contribute to the goals of the company and its marketing objectives. [3] Marketing strategy involves careful scanning of the internal and external environments. Internal environmental factors include the marketing mix, plus performance analysis and strategic constraints. External environmental factors include customer analysis, competitor analysis, target market analysis, as well as evaluation of any elements of the technological, economic, cultural or political/legal environment likely to impact success. A key component of marketing strategy is often to keep marketing in line with a company's overarching mission statement. It is a wide-reaching and comprehensive strategic planning tool that: * Describes business and its products and services

* Explains the position and role of products and services in the market * Profiles customers and competition
* Identifies the marketing tactics company will use
* Allows company to build a marketing plan and measure its effectiveness. [4] A good marketing strategy should be drawn from market research and focus on the right product mix in order to achieve the maximum profit potential and sustain the business. [5] 1.2. Types of marketing strategies

There are four major types of marketing strategies company can consider when planning marketing approach. These strategies are based on the role company plans to fulfill on the market: market leader, challenger, follower or niche marketer. Market Leader strategy

Company can maintain its position as the market leader in three ways or their combinations. First way includes expanding the total market by increasing the total number of users. In this case, company leads the way by finding a new market or creating a new use for an old product. This often includes searching for new geographical or demographical market. Second way is defending company’s current share of the market by means of enhancing product offerings. The clear example of this approach is Another option is reducing weak products or services and building up the strongest ones. Third way is market share expansion by aggressive attacks on competitors through a variety of strategies, such as coupons offerings, sales promotion and advertising benefits competitors doesn't have, such as longer shop hours or more personalized service. Market Challenger strategy

Investopedia describes market challenger as a firm that has a market share below that of the market leader, but...
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