Yellow River University: Marketing of Private University

Abstract

This paper will be discussing about the marketing of a private university in the daily lives of the consumers and the organizations. Private university marketing is a popularized approach today and organizations and consumers have used it for their benefits. The paper brings out one of the major theories of differences between public universities and private universities and their marketing techniques.

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Introduction

Today, it’s hard to think of a product or service which runs on monopoly. Competition is fierce and business houses look to strengthen their market presence by using innovate tools and latest technology. This is the same with Yellow River University of Science and Technology of China, as it faces competition from the likes public universities. The ninety’s were dominated by public university,’ which has now been replaced by what many believe is ‘Economies of scope,’ where more importance is given to student-centric policies. Policies which focus in student satisfaction seem to be the prerogative. In other words, individualism has given way to collectiveness. Students in China today seek far better education which offers high quality and reliability. Similarly, education availability is mandatory; otherwise, students could look elsewhere for similar of better education. In order to attain such professionalism, Yellow River University of Science and Technology have become centre of education excellence, centered on the principles of co-operation and partnership; outsourcing of logistics functions, the benefits of which are passed on to the student to attain business-customer resonance (Campbell, 1999).

There is a growing trend in the business and management literature suggesting that the purpose of a business is not only to make a profit, or return value, but also to create and deliver value to customers. Undoubtedly, the student dictates the success or debacle of a University. Without sales, there is no growth, and without growth, there is no revenue. The dynamic market forces such as global competition, changing customer expectations, and new communication technology and corporate restructuring, mandate continuous learning and implementation of strategies to beat competition (Thomson and Rampton, 2006).

Yellow River University of Science and Technology image and positioning are factors which influence student loyalty and success. The factors to consider are, a students’ perception of university image, and employees’ image perceptions of it.

Competitor Environment

One important aspect of competition is to understand university competitors and gauge their advantages and disadvantages to enhance one’s market presence. As mentioned, Yellow River University of Science and Technology faces stiff competition from public university. In order to assess Yellow River University of Science and Technology’s position in the market, an analysis is run on its competitors, and a study using Porter’s 5 Forces will elucidate their strengths and weaknesses (Armstrong and Kotler, 2007).

Competitor profile Analysis

By assessing public university’s profiles, it becomes easy to judge where Yellow River University of Science and Technology stands in the list of university education. All the above named brands are household names and each has uniqueness to their name. While most of them have an almost similar portfolio and follow identical marketing strategies, the analysis based on Porter’s 5 Force will elucidate the much needed difference to make or break competition. Based on the results of the analysis, Yellow River University of Science and Technology can restyle their strategy to enhance their brand position in the university education market. Yellow River University of Science and Technology offers a wide range of courses and these are charged for different segment of local and foreign (Summers and Smith, 2006).

In comparison, public universities have certain traits which make them comparatively competitive in nature to Yellow River University of Science and Technology. This is where Porter’s 5 Force can be used to study the impact of these brands against Yellow River University of Science and Technology. For one, Yellow River University of Science and Technology, public universities are from the same region. In the past decades, Chinese government and education institutions have been interactively involved in bringing about reforms in the sector. In the Universities, there has been stiff competition with foreign Universities in the future. For example, The Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China reacted to foreign education institutions being established in Chinese marketplaces by proclaiming a project called “211” in the middle 90’s. The purpose of this project was to invest more resources in approximately 100 Chinese Universities with the aim of promoting education and research standards to acquire high quality of education industry in China. In the 1998, under President Jiang Zemin Administration, “project 985” also had been established in order to make Peking University and Tsinghua University top- class universities around the world by 2015.

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The 21st century poses unique challenges. Declining populations of the younger generations around the world will be some of the major setbacks on many sectors of the economy, especially the education industry. Our goal is to prepare on how to survive these new challenges through partnership and the reestablishment of education programs. In the future time, we do not only hope to survive the challenging economic environment, but indeed thrive through unifying the resources and developing sustainable human resources throughout world. Education is the greatest resource as it moulds members of the society to be creative and equitable through respect for all, integrity and morally upright behavioral practices (Mitchell, 1993).

Literature review

Marketing at its simplest is the process of winning customers for products or services. It can be approached in two ways. It may begin with new product, one which a market has to be created. Or it may start from the point of an existing market and the search for a way of winning a bigger share or a more profitable share of it than competitors (Armstrong and Kotler, 2007).

Marketing management has a unique role to play within the task and responsibilities of business management. This is partly because the consumer desired profits. And this accounts for the necessity for a reorientation toward the needs and preferences of the consumer. Stated differently, the decisive and strategic decisions of the management have important marketing implications. And, basically, marketing is the way according to which there is a connection with the marketing environment. Marketing management thus has a considerable responsibility in the identification and interpretation of marketing factors as they find expression in business policy and strategy. Furthermore, marketing management’s policy and strategy form an integral facet of the enterprise’s policy and strategy because they form the pivot of the policy and strategy of other functional divisions of the enterprise, such as production, purchasing, financing, personnel and ultimately of the integrated business policy and strategy, and their execution(Schaik, 2002).

Marketing management may be viewed narrowly and broadly, viewed broadly, marketing management refers to all decision-management areas, in other words an integrated marketing management. By this is meant the decision-making unit, namely business management or general management or more specifically top management, which comprises the integration business functions. It is thus the task of marketing management to make decisions and follow a policy which in a market economy is directed toward the economic principle with maximizing profitability as the end objective, and might affect the economic principle. Viewed narrowly, marketing management to the activities of the business function marketing, in other words the marketing division (Kotler and Kevin, 2006).

The marketing problem is essentially a selection problem for marketing management. This selection problem has two facets. The first is that marketing management must, form the various kinds of products which may be produced and further form the various processing techniques, distribution and marketing communication methods which may be applied to create a product with a specific image make a choice which will enable them to market the product in the most effective way. The second facet is that marketing management must choose from various market possibilities or market segments for the product and it’s to assure the minimum return which this investment of business resources must yield in order to be acceptable from the viewpoint of maximizing profitability in the long run (Mitchell, 1993).

The dual selection problem forms the gist of the enterprise’s policy and strategy in general and that of marketing management in particular. Marketing management may now be defined as the decision-making unit which deals with the planning, organization, directing, co-ordination and control of a marketing policy and strategy based on specific product and service preferences and needs of the consumer. Marketing management decides on the product and service which will satisfy consumer needs; they build an effective demand for the product and service; they distribute the product and service when, where and in the quantity the consumer wants it; and they decide on a price which the consumer would be willing to pay. In other words, a total need-satisfying market offering is created (Schaik, 2002).

The task of marketing management consists of the management of marketing activities which direct the flow of products and services form the producer to the consumer in such a way that it accomplishes the primary objectives of the enterprise and in this process results in the greatest possible satisfaction of consumer needs. More specifically, marketing management is responsible for the analysis of the marketing environment more specifically the market with a view to the identification and evaluation of specific marketing opportunities and target market segment; the provision of realistic marketing objectives; and on the basis of the foregoing formulating a specific marketing policy, and further designing a marketing strategy consisting of a specific marketing plan and programme for the particular target market segment. Marketing management’s task also comprises the organization and directing of marketing in the enterprise; and furthers the co-ordination of policy, decisions and procedure, which are concerned with the marketing task. marketing management perform their task within the frame work provided by the enterprises purpose and mission, its specific objectives, its policy and strategy on the one hand; and on the other hand the enterprise’s production, technical, financial and marketing resources and the external non-influence able marketing factors. Both groups affect each other mutually, which in turn exercises a material effect on marketing management in the performance of the task (Campbell, 1999).

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The marketing system of an enterprise thus consists of basically five elements or subsystems, namely the marketing objectives, the inputs, processing, the output and feedback. Given the primary objectives of the enterprise and marketing, various inputs such as marketing information, business resources, target market segments and decisions about the product, price, distribution and marketing communication are processed; in other words, planning, organization, directing, co-ordination and control are taking place, which produce outputs, namely a need-satisfying market offering to achieve the marketing objectives. The output is measured y the objectives; the result of the measurement is fed back and, if necessary, the input is adjusted in order to accomplish the objective (Schaik, 2002).

The task marketing management is complex and demanding. It requires breadth in perspective and experience; it requires the ability to effectively integrate the various marketing activities and to meaningfully integrate marketing with the other functional areas of the enterprise, as well as the other enterprises in the distributing channel along which the products and services flow; and it requires all the activities to be co-ordinate meaningfully with the external non-influence able marketing factors. Furthermore, it demands an analytical approach to the various areas of responsibility, including the creative aspects of marketing planning and specifically the development of marketing policies and strategies. It is thus the responsibility of marketing management to bring within the framework of business planning and conduct a viewpoint and perspective, based on the enterprise’s markets and related to the marketing system in which the enterprise functions(Schaik, 2002).

The objective of marketing management is the accomplishment of the business objectives by means of a specific marketing policy which in turn can only be implemented by following a specific marketing strategy. Policy and strategy are therefore seen as separate entities and are treated as such, although in practice the two are difficulty to separate.

The marketing policy

Marketing management has a task to fulfill. Whatever they do beforehand in performing their task in terms of, for example, market and target segment analysis, and market forecasting, have very little value if they are not transformed into action, that is, into decisions. For this purpose marketing management have at their disposal various managerial tools, namely instruments of policy. A marketing policy instrument is any manes by which marketing management attempts to achieve the business objectives or attempts to influence the marketing result. Four such marketing policy instruments are usually distinguished, namely products, price, distribution and marketing communication. It should be remembered that a policy instrument is not the specific product, the specific price distribution channels and marketing communication campaign as such, but represents the choice marketing management has to make form among literally hundreds of alternatives products, prices, distribution channels and marketing communication campaigns. Marketing management means decision-making action or conduct. And marketing management makes decisions on policy instruments.

However, decisions on each of the policy instruments may not be made independently of each other, but should integrated in their interdependence and in the form of a general marketing policy, irrespective the size of the enterprises. Marketing management thus here has an influence over instruments which they may use separately at will or manipulate in combination in order to affect the marketing result. So the product policy can be used by emphasizing the unique characteristics, quality and packaging of the product, or the price policy by asking a particularly high price, but granting a considerable discount for cash purchases.

The combination and integration of decisions and procedures made in regard to policy instruments, is called the marketing policy. The marketing policy is based on the purpose and mission of the enterprise, its specific factors, and is basically a preplanned line of action which gives direction to further decision-making and action; it is a general statement based on an evaluation of all marketing alternatives, which defines the marketing strategy.

For the execution of the marketing policy the managerial tool, the marketing mix, is applied. This combination of the four mutually dependent policy instruments namely the marketing mix aims at the accomplishment of the primary objective of the marketing policy in a market economy, namely to achieve projected market situation on the basis of the results of marketing research and market forecasting and to realize the concomitant profitability expectation (Thomson and Rampton, 2006).

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The marketing strategy

The marketing strategy flows from the marketing policy and is the battle plan of the enterprise in order to accomplish the business objectives on which the marketing policy is based. A specific marketing strategy is thus the result of a specific marketing policy, in other words the application of a policy which is formulated by marketing management. The marketing strategy is thus defined as the particular marketing plan and programme with which marketing management compete in the marketing environment (Booms and Bitner, 1981).

The marketing plan and programme should not, be viewed in isolation, but form whole. The separation made is only for discussion purposes. It is all good and well to formulate a marketing strategy, but a further step has to be taken. Namely, the detail development and exposition of a strategic marketing plan in terms of specific target market segment, budget and work assignment in order to accomplish the marketing objectives. Basically the marketing plan must outline which marketing mix is to be presented to whom for how long; which business resources at what division is to be responsible for what; and what end result is expected, such as sales and profit according to a specific period. It might be decidable to include specific control procedures so that whoever implements the marketing plan, will know when matters do not progress according to plan. In such a case possibly only the actual need be compared with the expected sales. A well-planed marketing task is assigned; and provides standards by which achievement can be measured (Schaik, 2002).

Various periods are needed to implement the marketing inputs. This requires that a specific input must be prepared and introduced according to a specific time schedule so that the selected marketing strategy may have the desired result from specific date. By working backwards from the target date of the introduction of the product to the consumer, each policy instrument must be scheduled with sufficient lead time in order to completely effective on the target date (Kotare and Helena, 2004).

Marketing tact’s

Marketing strategy and marketing tactics are closely related and difficult to separate. Marketing tactics refers to the day to day tactical steps taken by marketing management within the defined marketing policy and strategy to contend with competitors (Johnson and Whittington, 2005). The tactics can thus be changed without necessarily resulting in a change in the strategy, and normally relate to a much shorter period than does the marketing strategy. However, marketing tactics should be applied with the greatest circumspection and knowledge to prevent any detrimental effect on the marketing result. Examples of marketing tactics are lowering in price on; a special advertising campaign and other supplementary marketing communication methods such as arranging a competition, holding a display, offering a price fro the televisions magazine quiz competition. An important question which marketing management must continually answer is whether the additional costs or the loss of income are justifiable (Schaik, 2002).

Brand Management

Kotler (1993) defines brand as ‘A name, term, sign, symbol or design, or a combination of these, which is intended to identify the goods or services of one group of sellers and differentiate them from those of competitors..’ A brand is all these things, but it can be much more in the sense that it can convey not only a message about a particular product or service but about important qualities of the organization that supplies it (Campbell, 1999).

Case Study

Yellow River University of Science and Technology in Henan province is an impressive and leading private university with advanced facilities such as modern house classrooms, library, science laboratories, school facilities, auditorium, art and photography studios. Apparently, Yellow River University of Science and Technology is a not-for-profit university in Henan. They commit themselves in providing their students with highest quality education in international perspective. Students who graduated in the university are recognized in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom and in China because the university is accredited in Canada and China. The university director for admissions provides leadership in advancing its strategic enrollment goals, and the director in Ontario provides management of daily activities in their admission office.

Yellow River University of Science and Technology in Henan is offering academic programs to approximately a thousand of students. All the sophomore students in the university live and take their classes at Henan. The tuition fees asked by the university include insurance, activities, and information technology. The insurance offered by the university covers medical expenses, personal possessions, tuition refund in case of protracted illness if fees paid by due date.

Product Mix Strategy

It is extremely important to have a well managed product mix. The decisions made in product mix strategy give consideration with the product lines being offered by Yellow River University of Science and Technology in Henan. Product mix decisions include determination of appropriate internal development against external acquisition in the product mix, and existing product lines in the mix. Primarily, Yellow River University of Science and Technology in Henan is offering academic programs to approximately a thousand of students. All the sophomore students in the university live and take their classes at Henan. All the campuses of the university are fully equipped with computer labs and libraries, and they are also offering internship opportunities.

The university is providing living arrangements to their students, particularly the sophomores who are housed in double rooms at the Campus. Furthermore, the students are offered with eighteen meals per week in their student cafeteria, while the juniors and seniors live in rooms in University Residence Halls. The University is accredited by the Commission on Higher Education which is recognized by the Department of Education. Yellow River University of Science and Technology in Henan is licensed to grant, Diplomas, BA and BS degrees. Clearly, Yellow River University of Science and Technology in Henan is offering degrees validated by the authorities in China, and their degrees are designated by the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills of China. Yellow River University of Science and Technology in Henan is offering academic programs encompassing communications, international relations, business, computer science, and arts reflecting broad-based core of studies in America.

They are private institution with full time student body of over 13,000 from China, and they are making global culture as part of their internship program and rigorous academic program. The university is striving for academic excellence, aspiring towards a virtuous life, dignity of human person, seek to build communities, search for truth, and foster a spirit of service. Yellow River University of Science and Technology has experiences in making their international students feel at home. They are treating well all their students, including their visiting students who wish to study for a year or one semester period. Their campuses have easy access to sports, shopping, and entertainment, and they are equipped with updated computer labs, science labs, arts studios, and extensive library, photography facilities, and theater. The university is also offering an international internship program with leading multinational companies.

Pricing Strategy

The tuition fees in Yellow River University of Science and Technology are set annually and did not change for the period of full academic year. Tuition fees and other charges are invoiced in Chinese currency for students in China, and US dollars for international students. All the international students are given the opportunity to acquire Loans which cover significant part of the total amount of the tuition fees. China offers government grants for those students who reside in China for at least 3 years. Furthermore, students from China can also be granted with Chinese Government Loans. Aside from the assistance given to undergraduate students, the China government is also offering special programs for the professionals through scholarships. International students in the university are only required to have their visas to have the opportunity to stay for more than six months, and they were no longer asked for proof of finances. Charges for full MA program of the university are payable in three equal installments. They have included a confirmation deposits for all the new students which is non transferable and non refundable. If the students decide to enroll, then their fees will be considered as security deposit which they can withdraw from the university after they graduate. This can only be applied to students with clear account and without any payables for damages and unpaid fees. The tuition fees asked by the university include insurance, activities, and information technology. The insurance offered by the university covers medical expenses, personal possessions, tuition refund in case of protracted illness if fees paid by due date. Housing deposits which are required at the time of housing application are not refundable and non transferable.

Placing

The placing strategies of Yellow River University of Science and Technology give considerations to the channels in making their services and goods available to potential customers. The university provides effective management in their daily operations and admissions office, and assists in the development of policies and procedures that will govern the process of enrollment. Yellow River University of Science and Technology develops a marketing plan and leads all the activities of their office including their e-marketing and telemarketing. The university design appropriate publications and maintain shared computer files between their offices. Furthermore, they implement their updated channel the Recruitment plus database installed to their office in the China. The university also has diverse marketing plan in recruiting International students, wherein they manage satellite admission office in some countries that daily updating their Recruitment plus database. They are executing and administering mailing campaigns, maintain relationships with the counselors and teachers of most high school campuses, and write publications and correspondence. The university has comprehensive solution in coordinating with their admission and enrollment activities. Through their Recruitment, Yellow River University of Science and Technology empowered their enrollment by leveraging their internal and external data in driving a customized and personalized communication with appropriate constituencies without tying up their IT resources. The university has options to database management, connection to other services, data integration strategies, best practices consulting allowing them to configure appropriate solution. The university sets enrollment goals and effectively manages the daily operations of their admission offices. Furthermore, the university is constantly strengthening and expanding their recruitment and enhancing their market share in the US while simultaneously maintaining a strong tradition of customer satisfaction and strong tradition of service. They ensure effective management to all the details involved in daily operations of their offices particularly the operations of their satellite offices.

Promotional strategy

  1. Promotional Mix: For the success of the marketing of the university, it is imperative the promotion of its brand be intensive and effective. Yellow River University of Science and Technology have embarked on rigorous training of our sales and marketing personnel to be well versed with the various promotional strategies that are in the market with the intention of settling on the one that is most relevant, applicable and effective for our case. They will use widely differentiated promotional strategy in the market by employing a different strategy at every stage of the product’s lie cycle (Jobber and Fahy, 2006). At the onset, it was necessarily viable to invest in popularizing Yellow River University of Science and Technology to the market through bill-board, television and radio advertisements as the surest way to reach our target market telling them of the university they were promoting. When the university started enjoying market popularity and acceptance, spending so much money on ads in the electronic and print media was be untenable and therefore they reverted to using adverts. The few media advertisements that will still be aired, we will have to change their content from being informative to being persuasive (Grant, 1991).
  2. Pull and Push Strategies:-The pull strategy that was employed will involve diffusing the market by hiring personnel to popularize the product in internet chat rooms and blogs. The aim of this strategy is to disseminate information as much as possible and to as many people as possible within the shortest time possible. They will reinforce this pulling strategy by distributing coupons and media advertisement. The push strategy that will be employed will have provisions for incentives that motivate and implore customers to bring all their children (Ries and Jack, 2000).
  3. Evaluation of Promotional Success:- Improvements in sales that can directly be attributed to the promotional strategies that will have been employed by Yellow River University of Science and Technology marketing team is expected. Sales to increase to 13000 students by 2007 after the magazine and television ads had been in the market. These results are appreciable and satisfactory as regards the kinds of promotional advertisements and endeavors that will have been chosen to be use. There working is expected to be promising even greater returns when adequately refined to meet specific educational needs and aspects of their promotion.
  4. Allocation of Promotional Budget:- The amounts of profits that will have been made by now directly owed to the promotions done at the entry of the Yellow River University of Science and Technology into the market will justify the budgetary allocation put into it. Yellow River University of Science and Technology assumes that the economy will be stable and that there is no foreseeable constrains on the economy in things like recessions or booms for both the local market in the China. Yellow River University of Science and Technology’s promotional budget accounted for 15 percent of the university’s operational expenses and the profit that are expected to be realized after the promotions were as follows;

The profit that are expected to be realized after the promotions

List of References

Armstrong, G, & Kotler, P 2007, Principles of Marketing. Prentice Hall/Upper Saddle River, New Jersey. Pp.174-194.

Booms, B, & Bitner, M 1981, Marketing strategies and organizations structures for service firms. In J. Donnelly and W. George (eds), Marketing of Services. An American Marketing Association, New York. Pp 45-52.

Campbell, A 1999, ‘Building Brand Identity in the New Economy’. Infoworks, 1999. Information Design-Content Strategy. Pp 12-14.

Grant, RM 1991, Contemporary Strategy Analysis: Concepts, Techniques, Application. Basil Blackwell, Cambridge. Pp 158-162.

Jobber, D, & Fahy, J 2006, Foundations of marketing. McGraw-Hill Higher Education, New York. Pp 263-272.

Johnson, G, & Whittington, K 2005, Exploring Corporate Strategy. FT Prentice Hall, New Jersey. Pp 263-276.

Kotare, M, & Helena, K 2004, Global Marketing Management. John Wiley and Sons, New York. Pp 89-98.

Kotler, P, & Kevin, LK 2006, Marketing Management. Pearson- Prentice Hall, New Jersey. Pp 342-358.

Mitchell, A 1993, Advertising Exposure, Memory and Choice. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Hillsdale, New Jersey. Pp 169-192.

Ries, A, & Jack, T 2000, Positioning- The Battle for Your Mind– 20th, Anniversary Edition: McGraw-Hill, New York. 201-206.

Schaik, J 2002, The Task of Marketing Management. Pity ltd, Cape Town. Pp 95-100.

Summers, J, & Smith, B 2006, Communication skills handbook, 2nd edition. Wiley publishing, New York. Pp 69-83.

Thomson, C, & Rampton, L 2006, Putting Your Customers First, Market Research. Melbourne press, Melbourne. Pp 125-133.

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