According to Philip Kotler (Defining Marketing For The 21st Century), Marketing can be described as an organizational function with steps that are taken for creating, communicating and delivering value to customers. It allows organizations to conduct relationships with stakeholders and organizations in a mutually beneficial manner. Strategy is an overarching plan to achieve a specific outcome whereas tactics are a specific action undertaken to achieve the overachieving strategy, research from (in Unit8: Pitching Public Relations Stories To The Media: Higher Apprenticeship). Understanding that every company wants to remain popular in the eye of its target market it must create a positive look for itself. Sustainability and success of a company are built upon on how it is viewed by stockholders and communication is a critical part of maintaining, building and protecting such reputations. Having a well developed Marketing Strategy is an effective part of the success of an organization as it deals with combining all the marketing goals into one comprehensive plan which is the Marketing Strategy. The Marketing Strategy, According to BusinessDictionary.com (Retrieved September 24, 2016, from BusinessDictionary.com) “A good marketing strategy should be drawn from market research and focus on the right product mix in order to achieve the maximum profit potential and sustain the business. The marketing strategy is the foundation of the marketing plan.” Having a well thought out Marketing Strategy is one thing but the steps toward achieving the goal are what makes it difficult. This is where having effective Marketing Tactics come into play. The tactics have been described as the steps you need to take to achieve your overall goal in the Marketing Strategy. Choosing the relevant tactics to implement the selected strategy is crucial. The Marketing Tactics must be able to increase sales or profit in the business and also be able to keep a competitive edge. Good marketing tactics will always end in positive feedback for a company in the sense that it will have positive customer feedback, maximize the promotion of the business, product or good and services provided by the company and have exhausted limited financial resources. I believe that for a business to succeed and continue to do so in the ever-changing economy and the world we live in it needs to have a proper plan. That plan must consist of a well-developed marketing strategy and marketing tactics to achieve the goals of the strategy. One company that is always ahead of its game and manages to always maintain a strong following is Coca Cola and that is because they are always creating new and improved marketing strategies and implementing compelling and practical marketing tactics to make it happen.
Coca-Cola is a widely know beverage all over the world. Over the last century, the company has continued to be a huge success and an icon of the American culture. It was created in 1886 by a pharmacist named John Pemberton and later marketed and owned by a man named Asa Griggs Candler. Coca-Cola is known as the soft drink of the world (Bell,2004). To become and remain one of the best-known brands in the world Coca-Cola looks at various marketing techniques two major techniques are the SWOT Analysis and Porter's Five Force Analysis.
SWOT Analysis looks at the strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats of a business or product. (Kotler,1991) states that this analysis would give a good insight of the strategic capabilities and resources available and how they are able to strengthen the competitive advantage as well as allow the company to exploit new opportunities. One of the major strengths of Coca Cola is the brand. A brand is the identity of the company, how the public relates to a brand is a key part in the success of the organization. Coca-Cola has a strong brand across the globe. The company has spent large sums of money for over a century building and perfecting their brand image so that it will be one of high customer recall and easily recognizable. This allows the company to own brand extensions and introduce various types of beverages such as Fanta and Sprite.
With all the success comes a little weakness as the company has also faced criticism regarding certain aspects of the environment and health. Though delicious to many Coca-Cola is considered to be extremely high in calories and sugar and harmful to your health.
Brian Bremner (Aug 10th 2006) reported that on August 9th in 2006 the company Coca-Cola was shaken up when it was wrapped in a scandal stating that there were high levels of toxic chemicals and pesticides that were dangerous for your health found in the cola drink. Such negative publicity caused a massive downfall in Indian and bad publicity in international markets. Opportunities that the company has branched into is that it has noticed that over the years people are beginning to become more health conscious. This would prove to be a problem for Coca-Cola as it is not particularly a healthy beverage but that did not stop the company from branching out into the market of bottled water and even bettering it. Dasani is one of the bottle water brands under the Coca-Cola brand and is a purified water. The company has even added a bottle that is up to 30% plant-based plastic making it a plus for the environment and made varied options to choose from such as Dasani Sparkling,Dasani Drops and Dasani Flavors.
Coca-Cola faces many threats but I believe one of its biggest threats lies with the third party bottling. Journey Staff in Supplier Requirements stated that there are many policies the third party suppliers must abide by. The bottle of the Coca-Cola is under different operations and the company does not have ownership of the company that makes them. If the bottling companies interest one day differs from that of the Coca-Cola Company it can result in a major risk to the company as the bottle is an iconic shape and well know and recognized.
Another big aspect of the Marketing Strategy is Porter's Five Force Analysis. (Porter, 2008) describes this as an analysis of the competitive environment a company has to operate in. Competition is always an issue in a competitive market but Coca-Cola seems to only have issues with one particular brand which is Pepsi. Pepsi is not as popular as Coca Cola but it does dominate certain markets such as the U.S. The reason I believe Pepsi is such a huge competitor is because like them they promote great brand value. Another force is the threat of new entrants which I believe for a company like Coca-Cola is very low. They spend years perfecting their brand it will not be easy for a new beverage to try and compete with them. They already have huge investments in the market and a new company would have to start small and try to compete with their already existing manufacturing plants and distribution channels. The threat of substitute products for a soft drink is crucial now as the world has seemed to dive into a new health craze. The idea of just not picking up a soft drink and drinking water instead is so easy so the threat of substitution is always high. People do not always want something that sweet and strong and can easily find a substitute to quench their thirst. Supplier power is not a problem for Coca-Cola. Labor for the business will be easy as people are always looking for jobs and the company employs over 700,000 people as of December 31,2013. Also, the ingredients to make the beverage as easy to get so it would not be hard for suppliers to be replaced. The final aspect of Porters Five Force Analysis is buyer power. The companies that supply the bottles have limited bargaining power because though the company needs the product to get the end result to the customers the bottling company unlike the actual product can be replaced. The Coca-Cola company is well known because it has an excellent marketing strategy and these strategies would not be successful without the implementation of effective marketing tactics.
The marketing tactics of a company are basically the steps the company makes to make the strategy work. The tactics are a branch of the marketing strategy of the business. Kevin Jordan (June 7th, 2013) wrote an article for the Redpoint Marketing Consultants on how Coca-Cola even as a large company still uses small business tactics in a beneficial way. it is stated that there are countries in the world where you cannot purchase a Coca-Cola. These countries were North Korea, Cuba and Myanmar. The countries were unable to do business with Coca-Cola because of U.S. sanctions which prevented it. Fortunately, the sanction was lifted for Myanmar. This left Coca-Cola with an issue they have not had to deal with over a long period of time, which was to now gain the trust of the people of Myanmar. The product, however, was not a complete ghost to the country. It was smuggled into the country through the black market and sold to the rich and wealthy labeling it as a drink only to be enjoyed by the upper class. Coca-Cola had to find a way to make the people of Myanmar know that this beverage was not just for people in the upper class but that it was something that can be enjoyed by anyone of any class and all ages. To do this they used their old marketing tactics to introduce themselves to the population. They wanted to country to know them, to trust them and to want to try them. Their first order of business was to ensure the people of Myanmar knew they could purchase a Coke. The company made the decision to print the price of the Coke on the labels to ensure retailers could not boost up the price. They wanted to people to know that the beverage was something to like and enjoy. They implemented the words “refreshing” and “delicious” to their marketing campaign to be included in their core messages to give a description of the experience you have when enjoying a Coke and what it tastes like. In the aspect of trust, the labels of the bottles included instructions on how people should drink the product. A description of how many ice cubes and the inclusion of a dash of lime was used in the hope that people would get the best experience out of their drink. They even gave away free samples of the product which were always served cold to ensure it was delivered right.
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