Describe the first “P” in the Marketing Mix (People), the Consumers, and the Nature of the Demand
Since NIVEA prides itself as a leading cosmetic and skincare brand, it is unsurprising that the customer profile of the company is mainly comprised of women. Men also comprise part of NIVEA’s target market, but the company enjoys a greater market share among women. Albeit women comprise the main target group for NIVEA, people of all age groups who are interested in taking care of their skin also comprise part of this target group. In some countries, NIVEA enjoys an almost 100% brand awareness in its main customer group (Beiersdorf Group 2013). For example, in Germany, NIVEA enjoys close to absolute brand awareness among women (Beiersdorf Group 2013). The high brand awareness of NIVEA’s products explains the company’s high sales around the world.
Describe the meaning of a “Consumer Led” Business
Consumer-led businesses are those that have a marketing mix strategy that aims to appeal to prevailing consumer dynamics. Consumer tastes and preferences guide such businesses in designing their marketing strategies. NIVEA is one such business that has a consumer-led market approach because it has invested a lot of money in conducting market research to assess the needs of its customers before it formulates its marketing mix strategies. Consumer-led companies therefore have a better record of responding to consumer needs.
What are the Key Parts of the Marketing Mix? Explain how Each Part of the Marketing Mix Works with the Others
NIVEA’s key marketing mix parts are the product, price, place, and promotion.
Part of NIVEA’S market success lies in its investment in market research. Indeed, the company has invested a lot of money in the development of the right products because it believes that understanding the market is the first process of developing an effective marketing mix (BCS 2013). Part of the company’s market strategy is identifying and targeting a group of people who share similar demographics (age, lifestyle, attitude, and gender). The company later develops new products that appeal to this target market. In this strategy, product testing is an important part of the marketing mix strategy because the company always tests its products, with a small sample population, before it markets them globally (BCS 2013).
The price of NIVEA products is an important part of its marketing strategy because prices affect the company’s sales and profitability (Kotler 2003). From this assessment, NIVEA believes that pricing should also play an important role in adding value to the company (BCS 2013). There are many pricing options that the company uses, including cost-based pricing, penetration pricing, and price skimming. Nonetheless, based on NIVEA’s global leadership, the company has for a long time played the role of setting prices when other companies launch new products in the market (BCS 2013). This leadership position affirms NIVEA’S leadership in the skincare market.
The concept of place is an important addition to NIVEA’S market mix strategy. This concept mainly revolves around the understanding of how NIVEA products may reach the consumers (Kotler 2003). History shows that NIVEA is mainly attracted to cost-effective distribution strategies that aim to reach the highest number of customers (BCS 2013). NIVEA also strives to ensure that its place strategy also has the lowest environmental impact. For example, the company avoids selling its products to small retailers because increased distribution networks would have a greater environmental impact, compared to selling its products to wholesalers (BCS 2013).
NIVEA’s promotional strategy is multifaceted. The main components of its promotional strategy include public relations, advertising, sales promotion, and personal selling. The choice of promotional strategy mainly depends on the lifestyle of the target market and the market demographics.
How Key parts of the Marketing Mix work with One Another
Based on the analysis of NIVEA’s market mix strategy, it is crucial to point out that all components of the marketing mix strategy complement one another for optimum efficiency. For example, intensive market research is at the center of NIVEA’s product and promotional strategies. Therefore, the company’s promotion and product strategies are mainly custom-based to appeal to the demographics of its customers. Each component of the company’s market mix strategy however bears equal importance because each market mix component builds on one another. For example, the product, place, and promotional strategies justify the company’s pricing strategy.
Explain Why the Balance of the Marketing Mix Is As Important As Any Single Element
NIVEA VISAGE emerged as Beiersdorf’s solution to a market research gap (NIVEA is part of a larger German corporate group, Beiersdorf). Indeed, Beiersdorf launched the product in 2005 to provide an alternative selection of beauty care products for NIVEA’S customers. The product’s target group includes young girls in their teen years, about 13-19 years old (BCS 2013). Many analysts consider the launch of NIVEA VISAGE as a carefully balanced approach by Beiersdorf to merge NIVEA’s 4Ps of marketing (price, promotion, place, and people). Certainly, Kotler (2003) admits that if companies concentrate on getting their marketing mix right, they are bound to succeed, at least in marketing. Through the balanced approach, Beiersdorf developed a carefully selected marketing mix that would appeal to NIVEA VISAGE’s customers. The re-launch of its name to “NIVEA VISAGE – Young Range” also gave it more publicity (BCS 2013).
Unlike other NIVEA products, the managers of the NIVEA VISAGE product line realized that its target group required products that would complement their beauty, as opposed to merely taking care of their skins. Consequently, they developed a special product line for teenage girls who appreciate the product’s beautification properties.
NIVEA prices NIVEA VISAGE a little more expensively than similar products in the market. The high pricing stems from new product formulations, new product packaging, and the extension of the product range (BCS 2013). The company’s pricing strategy has however been very tricky for the company because NIVEA VISAGE appeals to teenage girls who depend on their parents to buy the products. With such a challenge, NIVEA has always strived to ensure that it justifies its high pricing by providing extremely valuable products (BCS 2013). The failure to justify the high pricing strategy would have backfired on the company because the price of NIVEA VISAGE was out of reach for most teenage girls.
NIVEA VISAGE has a very elaborate marketing plan that aims to pursue different strategies to avail the product to its consumers. Despite the existence of numerous channels of distribution, NIVEA VISAGE uses retail distribution as its most preferred method of reaching the customers. For example, NIVEA sells most of the company’s products through high street shops around the world. Research shows that about 20% of young customers shop for NIVEA VISAGE products in these high street shops, without parental supervision (BCS 2013). Boots and Superdrug are some of these high street shops. However, BCS (2013) singles out Superdrug as a strategic outlet for reaching a “young” target market. The rest of the sales mainly occur through mainstream retail shops such as Tesco or ASDA.
The promotion strategy for NIVEA VISAGE excludes above-the-line promotional campaigns that solely depend on mass media communications, such as television or online advertising, for communication. Instead, the promotional strategies of NIVEA VISAGE include below-the-line promotion strategies (indirect promotional strategies) to sell their products to the public.
Analyze the Marketing Mix for NIVEA VISAGE Young. What are Its Strongest Points? Explain why you think this is so
The unique product features of NIVEA VISAGE outline the product’s strongest point. However, this unique strength shares a close relationship with the company’s marketing strategy because it justifies the product’s high price. For instance, without the unique product features, it would be difficult for the company to justify its high-end pricing strategy. The specific target market (teenage girls) that the product targets also manifests as a significant strong point of NIVEA VISAGE. This strength suffices because NIVEA VISAGE has created a niche market of beauty products. This strategy mainly explains why the product has an outstanding sales record among young women. Comprehensively, focused on the NIVEA VISAGE product line, it is therefore correct to say that the unique features of the product (beautifying qualities) and the creation of its niche market outline the product’s strongest selling points. Comprehensively, based on NIVEA’s carefully researched market mix strategy, it is easy to understand why the company is a leader in its market.
BCS 2013, NIVEA: The use of the Marketing Mix in Product Launch, Web.
Beiersdorf Group 2013, NIVEA: The Beginnings, Web.
Kotler, P 2003, A Framework for Marketing Management, Prentice Hall, New York.