April 3, 2013
Marketing Plan Phase I
What new product or service should Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. consider adding to their already expansive offering? This article will discuss the proposition of adding express clinics to Wal-Mart stores. This article will include an overview of the Wal-Mart’s the organization, a description of the new the service, express clinics, and an explanation of the importance of marketing to Wal-Mart’s success. This article will also include a SWOTT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats, and trends) analysis on the proposed express clinics, and conclude with a marketing research approach to use to develop the marketing strategy and tactics for the new express clinics. What type of organization is Wal-Mart and what makes it such a successful company? Wal-Mart is a public retail company founded in 1962 by founder Sam Walton. Wal-Mart was incorporated on October 31, 1969, and publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange in 1972 (Wal-Mart Stores, n.d.). It is headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas and is an international company. Wal-Mart is the largest grocery retailer in the United States. In 2009, Wal-Mart reported 51% of its $258 billion sales in the U.S. from the grocery business (Wal-Mart Stores, n.d.). What types of services does Wal-Mart currently offer customers? Wal-Mart continues to expand not only its product offering, but also its services. Currently Wal-Mart offers photo services, pharmacy services, financial services, wireless service, tax prep services, and auto express service, which includes tires, brakes, etc. Why would the addition of express clinics to Wal-Mart stores be a good option? Express clinics are designed to treat patients’ injuries and illnesses that require immediate care, but are not serious enough to warrant a trip to the emergency room. The Urgent Care Association of America established criteria for urgent care centers in April 2009 - The Certified Urgent Care Center designation. These criteria define scope of service, hours of operation, and staffing requirements. A qualifying facility must accept walk-in patients of all ages during all hours of operation. It should treat a "broad-spectrum" of illnesses and injuries, and have the ability to perform minor procedures. An urgent care center must also have on-site diagnostic services, including phlebotomy and x-ray (Urgent Care Association of America, 2011). Wal-Mart adding express clinics will be an added incentive for its already large customer base. Express clinics will be an alternative for current Wal-Mart customers and new customers who want to avoid the wait time of the emergency room. By the corporation already having numerous locations these clinics will be convenient for its large customer base. Wal-Mart already has many services including a pharmacy which will be an added value for customers using the clinic to get medications and needed medical supplies in the same location. Wal-Mart also has an extensive department of health and beauty goods and over the counter medications. The addition of express clinics will cut down the over crowding of local emergency rooms and hospitals for non critical emergencies. These clinics will not only offer non- critical care but also physical, preventative services including flu shots and vaccinations. Their customer base will be able to get unexpected physicals for work or school taken care of quickly without the hassle of scheduling doctor appointments. Wal-Mart having numerous 24 hour locations, this added express clinic can be a success and very profitable for the corporation, if a solid marketing strategy is in place. The importance of Wal-Mart marketing their urgent care will benefit everyone. There are so many accidents that happen at the store alone that there will be a place where a person can get first hand care right in the store. The marketing strategy will appeal to everyone from the...