Lebanese Flower Restaurant has started operations in a very competitive hospitality industry at Dorchester Street, Sydney, Nova Scotia, in Canada. The external environment in this country such political stability, economic environment, technology and legal structures have been friendly to operations of this firm. However, competitors have been posing serious challenge that hinders its growth. In order to succeed in this market, this firm must develop strategies that will help it understand to the market need. It should use its strength to maximize on the market opportunities and fight threats, while managing its weaknesses.
The Lebanese Flower Restaurant is a newly established restaurant located at Dorchester Street, Sydney, Nova Scotia, in Canada. This firm is a family-owned business that offers Middle East and Arabic foods. The firm has been in operations for the last two years. When conducting a situation analysis of this firm, it is appropriate to use models that can enhance understanding the firm’s internal and external environment in order to determine its competitive capacity in this market. PESTEL and SWOT analysis models would be important in understanding this firm.
In analyzing the external environment, PESTEL analysis would be appropriate. The political environment has been very stable. This country is one of the leading democracies. The political leadership has been very stable for the past several years. The government has offered a good environment where this firm can grow without any form of political interferences. However, this firm has a responsibility of paying taxes as set by the law, and following other regulations set by this government.
The economic environment in this country has also been stable. According to Thoma (2009), Canada is one of the wealthiest countries in the world, with the rate of unemployment estimated to be less than 6%. Lebanese Restaurant has the capacity to benefit from this stable economy. It means that the purchasing power of the market is relatively high. The management must find the best approach of reaping maximally from this developed economy.
The social environment in this society is varied. Canada has people from different ethnic groups, some of whom migrated into the country from as early as 14th century. The social environment is always important, especially when designing marketing strategy that is most appropriate in the market. This firm’s products target the Arab market, especially people from the Middle East. The current location of this firm is in a tourist hub. Although most of the residents are not of Arab origin, the firm can benefit massively from the Arab tourists who are very common in this region. It can also design its products and marketing strategy to attract customers of different cultures within this society.
Technology is one of the factors in the external environment that have influenced operations of firms in various ways. Lebanese Flower cannot ignore the emerging technologies. Technology can help this firm improve efficiency of its operations. It can also help in improve communication with the customers. Social media has been considered as an important technological tool used for marketing and enhancing communication between the firm and its customers. This firm should also point of sale (POS) technology to enhance efficiency and accuracy of its financial operations. The management can also developed its communication system to enhance its strategy development using technology. For instance, the management can use decision support system (DSS) as a way of ensuring that most of its decisions are based on a scientific premise.
The society has been very sensitive on environmental issues. Laws have been developed in this country to regulate issues such as industrial emissions and effluents that affect the environment negatively. Lebanese Flower must make an effort to ensure that its operations do not contravene laws and regulations of this country set to protect the environment. Its emission of gases should not exceed the set limits. This society has also been very sensitive on issues of corporate social responsibility, especially those that are related to the environment. The management of this firm should find a way of engaging in such activities in whichever way that is within its capacity. Given its small size, it may focus on a smaller region in its corporate strategies.
Finally, the management of Lebanese Restaurant should be very sensitive of issues regarding laws of the land. According to Ferrell and Hartline (2013), a firm cannot survive in a market that lacks laws and regulations to govern the relationship between one firm and another, a firm and its customers, a firm and the government, or any other relationship that a firm may find itself in during its operations. The management of this restaurant will have the responsibility of ensuring that it follows all the laws and regulations set in this industry on such issues as levels of hygiene, qualifications of the cooks, remittance of tax, and any other legal requirements set by this government. Observing these rules will help this firm avoid any legal actions that may be leveled against it.
In analyzing the internal environment, SWOT analysis would be used to understand some of the issues within the firm that may affect its operations positively or negatively (Handlechner, 2008). This firm has selected Arabic and Middle East culture as its target market. This has given it an upper hand in competition because Arabs are frequent visitors in this city. This offers it a special niche in the market. Innovative cuisine concepts and its management style have also been considered as a strength. The high visibility of its location, home deliveries, customer loyalty, professional staff, and online delivery services has also offered it additional strength in the market.
Major weakness that this firm has faced is its small location. This firm does not have adequate packing location for its visiting clients. Home delivery option is also available in a limited geographic area because of the limited financial capacity of the firm. Opportunities in the market have been witnessed in various forms. For instance, some of the common visitors in this region are Africans of Arab origin. They may not find the Middle East meals very common to them. However, this firm can redesign some of its products to meet this new market. The main threat in this market is competition. The market poses serious competition from well-established rivals.
According to Doole and Lowe (2008), a good marketing strategy starts by developing a good market research. Market research will help the firm understand some of the forces that will affect its normal operations. This firm must understand its customers in terms of age, race, and population, location level of income, and their tastes and preferences. This customer targets Arabs of all ages. It must categorize these customers in age groups, and determine foods that are most desired in each age group. The location of this firm at Dorchester Street offers it the best opportunity to attract visitors who come to this island.
The management should determine any difference in tastes and preferences that may exist due to gender difference, and then ensure that each gender receives the product they desire most. Determining the social class of the customers would also help in determining such factors as pricing. Most of the visitors and residents of this region are categorized as middle and upper income earners.
After understanding the customers, the next move would be to analyze competitors. Competitor analysis helps in setting the standards at this firm. Some of the strong competitors in this market include Camel Café and Zena Restaurant. These restaurants target the same market as Lebanese Restaurant. Other serious competitors include the mainstream hotels and motels in this region. The management should understand the pricing strategy used by these competitors, their service delivery approaches, quality of the products they offer, and customer retention strategies. This information will be needed in defining the strategy that this firm will use in the market.
Upon conducting this market research, this firm will be ready to make its own unique strategy that it shall use to gain competitive advantage in the market. The strategies should be focused on different aspects of the firm. When dealing with product delivery, the firm should develop a strategy that will enable it, deliver quality products to its customers at affordable prices. The pricing should be sensitive of competitors’ prices. As mentioned above, this firm must segment its market based on such issues as gender, age, and income. Each segment should be offered products that offer them maximum value.
The management should also consider using e-marketing and other technological tools to reach out to the market. Finally, the firm should not engage in direct confrontation with the competitors such as price wars. Instead, it should focus on constant delivery of quality products.
Doole, I., & Lowe, R. (2008). International marketing strategy: Analysis, development and implementation. London: Cengage Learning.
Ferrell, O. C., & Hartline, M. D. (2013). Marketing strategy: Text and cases. Mason: South Western Cengage Learning.
Handlechner, M. (2008). Marketing Strategy. München: GRIN Verlag GmbH.
Thoma, G. (2009). Frommer’s Dubai and Abu Dhabi Day by Day. New York: John Wiley & Sons.