For a business to thrive, there are several factors it needs to reflect on. One of these factors is the marketing strategies it's utilizing to realize its goals. Marketing techniques, as states by Demandmart is paramount as "some companies might find that their marketing strategy means life or death of their business. But, with the right strategy in hand, on paper, and in action, business of all types, sizes, and locations will experience the necessary success in order to hold a place in today’s competitive market.”
Not only does a business need to develop marketing strategies that work, but it also needs to come up with marketing plan. The marketing plan enables a business to devise marketing techniques that are workable (effective).
The marketing strategy and plan enables a business to know the needs and requirements of customers, thus designing means of meeting the needs of customers.
When the plan has been designed, the marketing techniques are applied.
Case study of Coca-Cola Coca-Cola Company
Coca-Cola Company, a multi-billion dollar company, is the largest producer of non-alcoholic beverages in the world. It is one of the most recognized trademarks in the world owing to the marketing techniques it's employed in enlarging its tentacles to the four corners of the world.
We will examine the marketing strategies Coca-Cola has utilized in expandingp its presence to a far-reaching world's population.
An advertisement attracts a person's attention and glues it on the description of the product or service being advertised. It creates a thirst of information on the individual on what is being advertised.
The content of the advertisement matters but it's not the only determining factor that creates a lasting impression on a person's mind. How the product or service is being presented, that is, the design of the ad, can pique an individual's curiosity or bores them to the point they won't bother to try the product or service.
Generally, there are two types of advertisements: persuasive and information-only ads. Coca-Cola has been able to employ these two types of advertisements effectively (and successfully).
It should be noted not only does an advertisement persuade people why they need to buy a business' product(s) or seek their service(s), but it should also inform them why the product or service is the best in the market.
4 Principles of Marketing Strategy | Brian Tracy
Advertising is one of the means Coca-Cola utilizes to promote its products. The others are: competitions and sponsorships.
A business can boost its image or reputation through sponsorships. This includes sponsoring an event e.g. sports event or a sports team. It can also include sponsoring a television or radio program.
Knowing a sports event, a program, a sports team or any other charitable work has been sponsored by a certain business will further imprint a lasting image of the business in an individual's mind.
Furthermore, it is widely-known individuals tend to buy products of a business, or seek its services, when the business is involved in charitable works. In the mind of an individual, the business is producing its product(s), or offering service(s), for the betterment of the society; and not to solely milk money from their pockets.
Competition is another marketing technique Coca-Cola uses. There are different competitions a business can come up with. An example is a competition that was held by Coca-Cola in Kenya. It required an individual to buy one of the company's flavour products, and look underneath the bottle-top for the prize indicated therein. If the prize imprinted in the bottle-top is an umbrella, an individual would head to the nearest distribution centre, and hand the bottle-top in exchange for an umbrella.
Advertising, in its different forms, sponsorship and competitions are the three forms a business can utilize (depending on their affordability of the chosen promotional means).
Marketing Plan: How to Get Started
Packaging refers to how a product is presented. This refers to the shape, size, appearance, color, the ease of using it and the design of the package. In the case of Coca-Cola, packaging refers to the way the concentrates and syrups are packaged. How have they been contained? In what form? In which type of package? It will be noted Coca-Cola products are packaged in bottles or cans . These bottles or cans which contain the concentrates have a unique shape/design, and come in different sizes. The concentrates are of different colors.
How you package your products matters a lot to people. Davidson states, “Even if you have created a useful product, convincing customers to buy the product often comes down to the way the packaging and product look on store shelves. Product packaging is often the most important feature in attracting potential customers to your product.”
A Jack Ma’s Tips – How to Grow a Small Business
There are varying definitions of the term, as will be noted below. Generally, a brand is a name or symbol that identifies a company and/or its products.
Brickmarketing defines a brand as, “…the idea or image of a specific product or service that consumers connect with, by identifying the name, logo, slogan, or design of the company who owns the idea or image.” This is what has set aside Coca-Cola from many other companies. This has been achieved mainly through advertising. However, it had taken many years for the company to develop its brand.
Branding as defined by Businessdictionary is “The process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumer’s mind, mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme.”
As noted by The Times 100, “A brand is well-recognised because it has been around for a long time. It takes years to develop a brand.”
The Balance Small Business states that "Branding is not just about getting your target market to select you over the competition. It's also about getting your prospects to see you as the sole provider of a solution to their problem or need."
When developing a marketing plan, as noted by The Balance SMB, the brand should serve as "a guide to understanding the purpose of your key business objectives and enables you to align the plan with those objectives. Branding doesn't just come during the time before the purchase - the brand experience has to last to create customer loyalty."
Lastly, your brand should trigger a certain emotion as brand is not always about product or service as indicated by Prezlab. They state, "A brand is not a logo. The logo represents a brand. The brand creates experience."
Coca-Cola has maintained its brand throughout decades by concentrating in evoking a specific emotion among viewers and readers - enjoyment. It has done this through advertisement by creating a story of the happiness derived from drinking one of their flavoured soft drinks.
© 2014 Alianess Benny Njuguna