Marketing plans are important components of a business strategy. While marketing plans have been used over the years, the invention of the Internet has changed the scope and nature of business strategic plans in many ways (Haegele 2001). The adoption of the Internet and computer-based technologies has led to the widespread application of e-marketing plans by many organizations and individual business entities. For instance, various commentators predict a rise in the number of businesses with online presence and e-marketing tools within their websites within the next ten years. In the last few years, the creation of e-businesses has changed the methods employed by various industries in their marketing efforts (Frost and Strauss 2014). Although this change is a manifestation of ‘‘democracy’’ in marketing, some companies face challenges in developing relevant and responsive e-marketing plans (Rigas 2001).
This paper seeks to develop an e-marketing plan for Emirates Airline. The overall objective of the plan is to contextualize a heightened adoption of e-marketing processes as tools of communication and marketing at the company. To this end, the plan seeks to develop an alternative and improved e-marketing plan based on an evaluation of the company’s current marketing strategies and operational environment. Taken together, the e-marketing plan demonstrates useful strategic measures for enhancing ‘‘system’’ applications in relation to the current Internet marketing tools employed by the company.
Situational (SWOT) Analysis of Emirates Airline
Emirates Airline is a major airline in the Middle East and a subsidiary of the Emirates Group. While it is a widely acclaimed Dubai’s national airline, it works in different states around the world. Various researches conducted on airline-based operations show that Emirates Airline has built a very good reputation since its inception (Rigas 2001). In fact, the airline conducts approximately two thousand and two hundred passenger air trips per week.
The airline makes flights to ninety one places in fifty five states. It headquarters at the Dubai International Airport (DIA). The airline was ‘‘conceived’’ and it began its operations in 1985. The major stakeholders of the Emirates Airline include the Airline’s passengers, its employees, top managers, the company’s shareholders, and the government of Dubai as well as the Aviation Industry of Dubai (Haegele 2001).
The company has effective and well-balanced marketing strengths that have continued enhancing its competitive advantage (Rigas 2001). To begin with, the company enjoys a large funding capability. To this end, the company’s broad financial strength has enabled it to venture into new markets across the world (Haegele 2001). A lot of funds have been invested to facilitate the provision of high standards of airline services. Moreover, the company boasts of an in-depth level of integrating technologies, including Internet communication measures, into its services (Rigas 2001). Viewed together, the company is placed in a better position against its competitors (Haegele 2001).
However, there are obvious marketing and operational weaknesses that need to be addressed. Emirates Airline’s services are not affordable to many prospective clients. One issue that remains clear is that, while the company offers very reliable services, the air transport fees are comparatively ‘‘exorbitant’’ (Rigas 2001). Conceivably, the cost of travelling by the airline is only affordable to a select-few who are able to afford the ‘‘comfort’’ offered by the company (Haegele 2001). On the other hand, there are many opportunities that the company can exploit to improve its marketing efforts. A number of countries, especially those in the developing world, do not enjoy the comfort of having very reliable air transport systems and services. Possibly, Emirates Airline should increase its presence in such markets. More importantly, the continued evolution of various technologies provides an opportunity for Emirates Airline to provide much cheaper services by integrating more of such measures into its services. One way through which it can do this is by interrogating and enhancing its e-marketing efforts. Specifically, such technologies could be used to enhance the standards of security that lure customers to use their airline services.
Nevertheless, for the company to enhance its presence and productivity in the aviation industry, the need for an analysis of its current threats cannot be overstated. Over the years, various airline companies have emerged. Because of this, the levels of competition have multiplied. This scenario poses a great threat to Emirates Airline. Often, the company is forced to incur additional costs in its efforts to maintain a steady customer base. Moreover, continued incidences of terrorism, poor and unpredictable weather conditions as well as negative advertisements from other companies threaten the future operations of the airline. For instance, periodic terrorist attacks and plane hijackings have forced Emirates Airline to allocate more resources in its security control measures (Rigas 2001). In any case, terrorist threats, hijacking of aircrafts, human trafficking, inflation rates and etc. necessitate improvements in marketing efforts and in the way the business is ran. Interestingly, even in the face of these challenges, some airline companies do not pay their attention to the business dynamics in countries where they run their business while organizing their major marketing strategies. The cultures, norms, traditions, weather patterns, natural calamities and the political situations in different locations must be thought of when creating marketing strategy in the airline industry.
E-Marketing Strategic Planning
A review of the company’s website and social network presence reveals that e-marketing concepts of the discussed business correspond to the strategies used in the tourism, communications and hotel industries. The e-marketing strategies employed by Emirates Airline targets the four sets of a marketing mix. More importantly, the strategy that includes a catchy business slogan on its website has improved its online presence (Haegele 2001). To be specific, ‘‘Fly Emirates’’ has been one of the Emirates Airline branding slogan. Other online marketing slogans previously employed include ‘‘the Finest in the Sky’’, ‘‘Be Good to Yourself by Fly Emirates’’, ‘‘Fly Emirates – Keep Flying’’, and ‘When was the last time you did something for yourself’ (Rigas 2001).
Researches on online use of slogans show that some of them have developed the Emirates Airline’s conducting of services. Today’s clients are inclined to comply with the online business slogans that convey their concerns. Slogans such as ‘‘Be Good to yourself’’ and ‘‘when was the last time you did something for yourself?’’ by the Emirates Airline make the customers think that he or she are highly valued and cherished.
This marketing plan aims to boost the use of the company’s website by motivated clients and increase sales volume of its products. The plan is tailored around online-intelligent marketing strategies that raise customer-awareness just as it enhances Emirates Airline online presence.
E-Marketing Strategy/ Tactics
The tactics to be used include increased optimization of the company’s website’s contents and tracking of measures to restructure information on the website. Besides, measures to increase in using online spaces to enhance the company’s website structure and other social media platforms will be employed. These include employing strategic plans to attract and maintain search engines. In the end, the plan’s expected outcome will be a rise in ‘‘traffic’’ to heighten sales of the company’s products and services (Frost and Strauss 2014).
Another tactic will be a careful selection of actors suitable for the e-marketing processes. Overall, the identification of the actors must be clear in stating the neutral-cooperative marketers and Information technology (IT) experts. These actors will identify the kind of online customers who are unfriendly or otherwise.
More critical are the measures aimed at enhancing the use of online marketing ‘‘spaces’’ (Haegele 2001). Presently, a number of these spaces are not owned by Emirates Airline. The marketing team will create ‘‘literature’’ to be inserted in such spaces, but not the terms and conditions. In any event, the team will employ a number of public relations methodologies including the use of attractive language. This way, the company will enhance its presence on Facebook, Twitter and other online marketing platforms. In the case of Google, the marketing team will consider using ‘‘Ad sense’’ programs in putting up the required adverts. In addition, the team will employ the use of community, promotional, advertising and the use of content spaces.
Additional advertising spaces will be used as online ‘‘quarters’’ where the company will be buying ‘‘spaces’’ to display its products’ contents and programs aimed at attracting prospective clients. These will include gmail.google.com and blogs. On the other hand, ‘‘content’’ spaces will require well thought-out models. The marketing team will employ external consultants to develop such contents. Further, identified stakeholders must have expertise in issues of business promotions and public-management challenges within the airline industry. Here, the use of the company’s website will be critical just as various search engines like ‘‘google.com’’ and portal directories such as ‘‘www.yahoo.com’’ will be enhanced (Frost and Strauss 2014).
Online community spaces will be employed as well. These kinds of spaces have been viewed as groups where consumers ‘‘gather’’ to discuss the company’s products (Haegele 2001). In addition, a robust use of promotional websites will be employed. These will be designed for the promotion of the company’s name by using communication incentives. Other measures should be those that offer financial incentives like telling prospective customers that in-advance airline bookings guarantee them 10% cut in their subsequent bookings.
Two approaches will be used. Overall, the actions to be taken must be classified into analytical, customer relationship management and communication measures. Communication actions will include ‘‘pop-up’’ online ads, immersive advertising as well as email newsletters. The adverts will respond to frequent inquiries about the airline. Moreover, additional use of analytics will be implemented. Usually, these involve optimization of the search engines to respond to the demands needed for an enhanced impact (Frost and Strauss 2014). In many cases, it will entail shaping up the company’s website content to increase its ranking on various search engines. This way, the traditional methodologies of communication and marketing strategies will be anchored and made complementary to the ongoing efforts.
|Budget Item||1stQuarter||2ndQuarter||3rd |
|Website restructuring||$||$||$||$||Marketing and Communications|
|Content editing||$||$||$||$||Marketing and Partners|
|Content design||$||$||$||$||Marketing and Communications|
|Customer service survey feedback||$||$||$||$||Marketing and Communications|
|Data base maintenance||$||$||$||$||Marketing and Partners|
|Content coordination||$||$||$||$||Information Technology|
|E-newsletter subscription||$||$||$||$||Marketing and Communications|
|Tabulationcost||$||$||$||$||Marketing and Communications|
|Space renting||$||$||$||$||Information Technology|
The strategy for evaluating the marketing plan will be tailored around customer relationship managerial measures and e-marketing outcomes. The company, through its communications and marketing departments, will adapt and maintain the existing privacy templates in its websites and online booking forms. These measures will ensure that third unauthorized parties do not have a privy to the information or actions they engage in. Evaluation processes will focus on campaigns against common and uncommon computer ‘‘viruses’’ and an improved continuous brand-creation of ‘‘groups/likes’’ in social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.
Beyond these strategies, whenever the company website or link is created, the management team will endeavor to advertise it through a press release and other subsidiary online platforms. These processes will raise awareness among the airline’s main and potential clients. Moreover, the plan recognizes the often-mentioned notion that an outcome is the cardinal endeavor of e-marketing actions taken by any company. This is because e-marketing plans ought to produce the desired results. Progress evaluations will be carried out to ascertain the extent to which some goals succeed and the components, which should be replicated. For instance, the website links that will be re-designed to attract a great percentage of online hits will invite corrective actions when such hits are not realized within a set time-line.
Taken together, the e-marketing plan will be useful in establishing strategic measures for capturing and maintain Emirates Airline customers in the changing dynamics of today’s business operations. The tools to be used will be tailored on Internet marketing and online-system optimization measures.
Frost, Raymond, and Judy Strauss. E-marketing. New York: Pearson. (Frost and Strauss 2014, 4- 55). 2014.
Haegele, Katie. E-Advertising and E-marketing Opportunities. New York: The Rosen Publishing Group Inclusive. (Haegele 2001, 13-41). 2001.
Rigas, Doganis. The Business of Airline in the Twenty-First Century. New York: Routledge. (Rigas 2001, 7-56). 2001.