Managerial Marketing. B randing and Company Image

Managerial Marketing

This report discusses the implications of creating a turnover for GGI by strategically implementing marketing tools and branding strategies. The report highlights how sales and market share could be increased by tactfully engaging in branding activities and creating a company image that gains customer appreciation and loyalty.

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Goals and Objectives

The goal of any marketing strategy implemented in any type of business is fundamental to inform potential customers about your products and reaffirm existing customers about your consistent values and why buying your products is a better decision. It also includes informing them about new products arrivals, product line extensions, change in any new existing products, discounts, deals, etc. Running a business and selling a product (s) without effectively marketing them is like winking in the dark: your intentions won’t be communicated and your efforts will be wasted.

The goals of the marketing and branding efforts advised in this report are as follows:

  • To consolidate product planning and supplier relations in offering a comprehensive product range to the customers catering to their various house-ware and decoration needs.
  • To effectively and attractively market the company’s offerings to the customers in order to create awareness in the market.
  • To brand the company’s products and its name in order to have customers associate a certain set of values, promises and expectations from the company, and to have a relationship with customers.
  • To implement effective advertising mechanisms and invest in both Above the Line and Below the Line marketing activities in order to promote the brand.
  • To emphasize customer relationship management. Track customer demand trends, offer a better, friendlier service, and create an ambiance so that customers like the whole experience of shopping at GGI.
  • To build up supplier relationships and expand product line.
  • To work on brand visibility in terms of distribution and accessibility by opening more stores etc
  • To effectively plan and manage all the four Ps of marketing.

Strategy & Steps

Branding

A brand is a set of promises, a set of expectations, a trigger of many favorable (and unfavorable) mental associations that customers come to develop about a certain company. A brand is everything that a company stands for. It creates that essential link between a customer and the company where they can relate with the name, and the experience. They trust a brand and expect it to fulfill a certain set of promises of higher quality, taste, experience etc.

GGI has been around for quite some time now, yet it’s unable to create repeat business and sales look so vulnerable to external factors. By branding GGI, we aim to create an image, a perception, an aura in the minds of the consumer and target market. When there’ll be a brand, there’ll be a brand following. Branding begins by creating a logo, and giving your company a personality, which is emphasized by every point of contact the company shares with the consumer. From the employees in the stores, to the brand logo, to packaging, to pricing tactics, to the store ambiance, to the tagline etc. Everything sets the positioning of your brand in your customer’s mindset.

Advertising

Advertising is one of the most influential ways to communicate about not only your products but also your brand, its value, its set of promises, its persona etc to your target audience. It utilizes the most effective and widely popular medium of communication that takes a lot from popular culture and adds a lot to it as well. (David Carlson, 2007) It not only helps to spread awareness about your products and all but also helps develop and refine consumer tastes and preferences.

Judging by the financial muscle of our company, we’ll exploit different mediums of advertising to carry our message across. Print media will capture audiences that subscribe to magazines and brochures related to home making and the like. Also, brochures could be kept in cafes and other places our target audience frequent. We could target our audience by marketing on the internet as well.

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Campaigns

We could run seasonal campaigns for home décor items when customers usually spend more on such items for e.g. near Christmas, Easter etc. and advertise those in print media and other methods such as Direct Mail, Email (to customers who choose to subscribe to a monthly newsletter). Campaigns will be properly planned and executed. Specific targets shall be set for each campaign in terms of sales figures and customer foot traffic.

Public Relations

Good, solid PR could take a business a long way when it comes to brand loyalty and customer trust. We can plan to hold a few exhibits or take part in other events going around the town(s) where our target market resides to showcase our products.

Digital Advertising

We can utilize a number of digital channels to advertise our brands thru. Customers could be inquired if they want to sign up for a weekly or a monthly newsletter. A digital newsletter could be designed that would effectively be the opinion and trends leader in home décor and home care category. (Williams, 2008) Complimentary copies could be sent to frequent or loyal customers via snail mail and even email. Social networking websites could be utilized to create blogs, i-logs, fan pages, chat rooms, online groups etc which would create hype and awareness among customers and increase brand equity and credibility.

Slogan

The slogan of a brand is a very upfront aspect of its personality. They create hype, a buzz and they make people talk about your brand. Some brands become the talk of the town by the slogans they create, and the message it sends across about the brand. People commonly think in terms of images and pictures than words. Slogans are more than mere words; they paint vivid, interesting pictures in consumers’ minds that they come to associate with the brand over time. Famous brands have created famous slogans that began the vogue talk and attracted customer’s attention. We can’t discount the importance of attracting the customer’s attention in today’s world where customers are exposed to an over-communicated clutter by marketers everywhere. The BMW slogan as “the ultimate driving machine” and Nike’s “Just Do It” have created an image in the customers’ minds over the time and have carved a position in it that’s unlikely to be replaced by any competitor. True, a slogan alone can’t drive you your competitive edge or serve as your ultimate USP, but it sure is one important aspect in the overall positioning of your brand.

GGI will also aim to position the brand in the target market’s mind, the way we want it: as a complete home maker’s shop, somewhere that promises a complete experience in itself. We can position the brand as the pricing suggests to i.e. according to the premium nature of the brand. The slogan should communicate what customers should expect from GGI: a complete home maker’s paradise, a unique experience, a superior brand that promises value for money like none other.

Promotion

Promotion is a broad term used which basically encompasses all marketing efforts to position your brand toward your target customers at the right time in the manner acceptable and welcome by them. For this a company needs to have solid insight into customer likes and dislikes, their consumption patterns, their lifestyle changes, attitudes, the prejudice they harbor and the fears they battle against etc.

Promoting your brand is basically touching your customers whenever they are receptive to your message, whenever they could pay attention and absorb the message we are trying to send across. We could promote our brand thru the several types of media, by hosting events aimed at winning customer trust and build awareness. Also ‘subtle’ methods of promotion could be used such as endorsement during different TV shows, ads, soaps etc. We could show celebrities walking in our stores during shootings or in one of the ‘scenes’ in one of the famous TV programs.

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Organizational Scope

We are looking for an organizational makeover since branding runs throughout the organizational core, requiring you to redesign your organizational philosophy, understand your own core values, know what image your company has in the minds of your customers whether it’s the one you’d like to further promote or edit, know the strengths and weaknesses of your company and how to successfully project them thru effective advertising messages to your target audience. (Lake, 2007) Therefore, the branding/marketing strategy will encapsulate the entire organization and possibly all departments in its approach. The marketing department would be required to take a double look at all its activities (or will be required to set up in case it does not exist already). Along with it, the Customer Relations department, Supply and Distribution, Retail Operations etc will be affected. These departments would’ve to make a consolidated strategy to incorporate all the new ideas and changes of philosophy happening within the company in order to successfully transform as a proactive and complete company.

The Supply and Distribution department would have to revise its orders and see what other products they could sell and import from Asian markets. They could do with conducting a little research about the demands of certain products in the American markets so that product range decisions could be smartly handled.

The Customer Relationship and IT departments will focus on developing newsletters and other communicational content to keep customers involved, informed and up to date.

The marketing department would spearhead this evolution though in close coordination with senior and strategic management. The department would design the whole marketing strategy, will communicate the change of philosophy throughout the organization. It will also work with the Human Resources department to train and prepare employees for the attitude shift and people management.

Customer Relationship Marketing

Relationship Marketing refers to the planned retention and enhancement of existing customers of a firm thru direct forms of marketing. It’s opposed to mass marketing where efforts are made to acquire new customers and reach out to potentially untapped markets.

It’s usually believed that it’s more costly and difficult to acquire new customers since it normally involves making a customer ‘switch over’ from a competitor brand or introduce the product category to a customer entirely new for this market. Such efforts require lots of efforts to bring about attitude changes and fight dissonance and doubts as opposed to retaining and maintaining your existing customers simply by making their experiences with your brand, better and more worthwhile by employing such tactics like Total Quality Management and continuous improvement. Therefore it’s usually suggested for companies operating on a tough budget who don’t want to squander already scarce resources on mass advertising schemes and plots that require a humongous budget. The practices of customer relationship marketing have evolved from the more traditional customer relationship management approaches which focus on tracking and maintain customer records, their tastes, preferences, product complaints etc in order to make every exchange between them and the company more meaningful and more memorable.

So it will ultimately depend on the company’s financial leverage and willingness to take such a financial risk (given it can afford) to advertise on mainstream media and acquire new customers. Needless to say, marketing spells out the scope for a business, the bigger your marketing reach, the bigger you can expect your business to grow.

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References

Carlson, D. (2007). The Importance of Product Strategy. 2009. Web.

Lake, L. (2007). Why is Branding Important. 2009. Web.

Williams, J. (2008). Importance of Branidng. 2009. Web.

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