Marketing plan can be defined as a document that contains comprehensive details of a company or marketing strategies of an organization. This paper will discuss a marketing plan for Eden Foods Company based in the US. Since its establishment in 1960s, Eden Foods Company has concentrated on production and marketing of organic foods including dry beans, canned organic beans, sweeteners, fruits and juices, vinegar and oils, spices, sea vegetables and whole grains among others. In its attempt to expand its business portfolio, Eden Foods intends to launch its canned beans product line into the UK market. A SWOT analysis of Eden Foods Company shows that, the company has strengths in internal capability to produce the best and highest quality organic foods.
In addition, it has a reputation of being the oldest, largest, and best manufacturer of dry grocery organic foods (Eden Foods, 2013). However, international market penetration and inexperience proves to be one of the weaknesses of the company. Moreover, the company faces potential opportunity for an expanding market despite intense competition. A PESTLE analysis shows that external factors will have significant impact on the company’s product, especially when being launched in the UK market.
Marketing strategies will be aimed at positioning the company strategically, with focus being on target customers. With comprehensive data describing the main objective of the company including financial, marketing, and societal objectives, the company will be in a position to design marketing strategies that not only focus on customer satisfaction, but also on sustainable profitability. In analyzing the financial plan, it is projected that revenues will grow steadily in the next five years; with breakeven expected to be achieved with the first year. Finally, the company will implement various metrics and implementation controls in order to achieve a competitive advantage in the UK organic foods market (Luke, 2013).
Eden Foods Company is one of the oldest producer and marketer of natural and organic foods (Eden Foods, 2013). Having began operations over 40 years ago, the company has grown in reaps and bounds, and today, it is the largest organic foods manufacturer in the US. Its growth has also been influenced by a unique strategy adopted by the company during its early years of operations that involves door-to-door sensitization of farmers to grow and supply organic fresh foods using organic methods. As the company’s organic food brands started hitting the market, health food stores began demanding supplies from Eden Foods Company, thus prompting the company to open warehouses in various parts of North America and diversify its product lines.
Currently, Eden Foods Company has retained its natural distribution strategy, with its organic foods predominantly being sold in “natural food stores, co-ops, and supermarkets” (Eden Foods, 2013). The success of the company has also been motivated by its corporate social responsibility that has seen the company committing itself to energy and environmental principles in its construction and operations, including the use of recycled materials. Nevertheless, Eden Foods Company boasts of a wide variety of organic products, including whole grains, cereals, organic dried apples, organic dried fruits and nuts, and organic sea vegetables among others.
Eden Foods Company has concentrated on diversifying its business in the US over the years. However, it has not fully entered into international marketing save for a few exports for orders made through its website. Therefore, the company wishes to expand its operations to the UK market by launching its canned beans product line. With demand for organic foods witnessing a rising trend in the global market, Eden Foods sees a potential breakthrough in the UK market. One of the main strengths in introducing this canned beans product is that it comes in a variety of brands including organic plain beans, organic refried beans, organic rice &beans and organic seasoned beans. This provides customers with a variety of options to choose from.
The demand for organic foods is rising, and UK is one of the areas where people are demanding healthy, environment friendly and palatable food. In SWOT analysis, Eden Foods Company’s strength lies in its capacity to produce a variety of organic foods, thus providing customers with a large array of choices. In addition, the company has a good rapport with farmers who use organic farming methods to grow foods that they supply to the company for processing. Moreover, the company has a reputation of producing high quality organic foods as well as transparency in disclosing the ingredients used in processing and packaging of its products (Eden Foods, 2013).
The company’s facilities are also highly rated as evidenced by the recognition the company received from The Better World Shopping Guide (Eden Foods, 2013). However, the company’s weakness is in its inexperience in international market, having not expanded its business outside the US, thus making it difficult to compete in the UK market.
In relation to opportunities, the company operates in a market that shows potential population increase, which will in turn translate to higher demand for organic foods. Indeed, the demand for organic foods has been increasing, with global rates standing at over 80% (Cook, 2004). The company has an opportunity to provide advertisement about the product through a wide range of advertisement opportunities on both local and international media such as newspapers, magazines and various websites. In addition, there are various billboards in the country that have been mounted, which the company should take advantage of in order to encourage the public to buy canned beans product from its stores. Lastly, the company has an opportunity to associate with local organic food marketers in order to penetrate in the UK market.
In terms of threats, the company faces stiff competition from cultured organic food marketers such as the Organic Fresh Foods Company situated in Wales. Moreover, the company faces the threat of unreliable supply of produce, as it does not have a direct link with local farmers unlike its potential competitors.
PESTLE analysis will provide an analysis of the company’s position in relation to the environment. This analysis will include the political, economic, social, technological, legal, and environmental factors affecting the business. In relation to political factors in the UK, it is a legal requirement that the business must follow food regulations and laws that include proper hygiene. Again, local permits are also required as well as food safety regulations that ensure foods are safe for human consumption (Luke, 2013). In economic aspect, Eden Foods will have to carry out a cost-benefit analysis, especially considering that UK is a developed country with competitive market operators. Social aspect will also affect Eden Foods launch of its canned beans product, as the company would need to demonstrate social and health benefits of organic foods to consumers.
Segments (Marketing intentions)
The main marketing purpose for this business is to attract more customers and to ensure that enough profits are generated from the business. Market segmentation involves classifying various target groups or market segments and then offering products that are specifically relevant to such markets (Lamb, Hair, and McDaniel, 2010). The positioning of the business will allow for more sales, since the local organic foods industry is not too much competitive. In addition, the targeting group for the business is both the local consumers and international consumers of organic foods. The four varieties of canned beans would form four distinct segments, which the company should target; that is, customers may be segmented in relation to the tastes and varieties of canned beans they prefer to purchase. Moreover, segmentation will also be done in terms of pricing.
The main objective of this company is to provide the best organic foods to customers in the UK. Again, the company aims at providing both affordable and quality organic canned beans to both local and international consumers. The company also plans to provide employment opportunities to various youths in the country to reduce unemployment rates among local youths (Zander, Hamm 2010). Besides, the company intends to offer palatable and tasty foods to the whole of UK community. Finally, the company aims at providing the society with easy access to clean food and environmentally friendly organic food.
There are various marketing strategies that can be used in order to achieve the goals and objectives of this company (Ferrell, 2012). This company will use marketing strategies that focus on all components of marketing mix including the product itself, distribution channels, pricing of the product and promotion. In addition, marketing research will be conducted in order to ensure that the marketing strategies used are effective and efficient.
The product will be differentiated from other products in the market through unique features and suitability to the tastes of the target customers. Primarily, given that beans are perishable products, packaging would be made using high quality and stable containers that will allow the product to remain fresh for a longer time, even without adding preservatives. In relation to price, the company will offer the most competitive price in the market, taking into consideration that the product has close substitutes that can influence customers to shift.
Another differentiation strategy will come in form of distribution channels, where the company will use modern refrigerated trucks to distribute canned beans to major chain stores, distribution stores, and company’s own retail stores. Various promotion strategies will include personal selling and advertisements. Advertisement channels that would be used include billboards and newspaper advertising. Moreover, the products will be advertised in both the company’s website and social media to ensure that it reaches a wide range of audiences (Drummond, Ensor, and Ashford, 2013).
A number of marketing programs will be implemented in order for the company to achieve its objectives. The first program of the company will be to provide and supply canned beans in the U.K. Employing local people will not only improve the image of Eden Foods Company, but also attract more market for the company. In addition, Eden Foods would need to work in partnership with local food companies in order to access a large number of local consumers. Moreover, as Eden Foods expands, it should take into consideration the importance of health, as this is one of the most sensitive matters communities look into (Zanoli and Naspetti, 2011). Generally, the company plans to increase its customer base within the next five years with a rate of about 50%. Moreover, the company plans to upgrade technology in processing and marketing its products where customers will later make their orders online through the company’s website and social media accounts. Finally, the company plans to improve its marketing and sales by providing services focused on holistic marketing and customer value.
On the matters relating to financial plans, the company is expecting a revenue base that will give it the opportunity for expansion in the next five years. To achieve this, the company plans to sell a half of its products within the first year of operation by taking advantage of its strong marketing strategies and a competent workforce. Again, the anticipated profits of the company are likely to double since most of the targeted groups will be satisfied with the product that will be offered by the company. Nevertheless, the expected international and local business partnerships will not only improve sales, but also the positioning of the company as a high quality low price canned beans marketer (Doole and Lowe 2005).
Metrics and Implementation controls
Metrics are usually used in businesses to establish measures and specific performances and results related to the company. These include various forecasts and schedules that can be used in planning and timing of the company’s programs (McDonald, 2011). In this company, customers’ loyalty, profitability, pricing strategy and other various planning metrics will be conducted to ensure that the best service is delivered to the customers. Besides, promotional strategies such as media and web metrics will also be used. Furthermore, the company will use a planning metrics known as marketing dashboard where a computerized technology with digital presentation necessary in management will be used. This technology has the ability to allow management to track important metrics overtime and to trace various deviations in the management plan (Seetharaman, 2013).
There are various metrics that are important in the company. Primarily, marketing metrics enable the company to acquire new customers, retain current customers and to increase market share. These metrics measure the percentage of new customers over a given period usually within a month or year. On the other hand, financial metrics measure the net margin of a company, thereby allowing it to improve profitability. Besides, the use of societal metrics will be important in this company, since it will make the products to be more environmental friendly, as it mostly measures the products parts that can be recycled. Lastly, the company will improve sales by implementing profitability control and productivity control, which will include both annual sale control and strategic control. Again, the company will also implement marketing plan programs and preparation of contingency plans (McDonald, 2011).
It is clear that a marketing plan is important for all companies in order to give the business the best marketing strategy and programs that would allow faster selling of new products. Therefore, for proper marketing of canned beans in U.K market, the company will use a variety of strategies. In addition, a marketing plan gives the company an opportunity to improve on its weaknesses, build on its strengths, and utilize opportunities available in the external environment. Therefore, SWOT and PESTLE analysis are very important in the company to give room for improvement. Finally, the paper has also discussed various marketing procedures and metrics that include societal and marketing metrics.
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