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  • Published on: 14th September 2019
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Executive summary

Zilch Fashion Company is an apparel maker based only in the USA. It has just over 1,000 stores spread across the USA. These stores were selected because of the uniqueness of the market that Zilch deals in. the company sells high quality, fashionable and unique clothes to the elites and the rich people in the society. Moreover, it targets those potential customers who are conscious of their fashion and want to change with the fashion trends, but want to maintain some level of exclusivity.  For this reason, Zilch Fashion Company sells its products at high prices.

Zilch has however not grown its market as it would have liked to over the years. As at December 2016, the sales of the company were $3 billion, profit of $250 million, a market share of 0.98% and brand awareness is at 2% whereas brand preference is 0.5%. When compared to Zara, the leading apparel wear maker in the fashion industry, these statistics paints a picture of failure. As at December 2016, Zara had a market share of 18%, sales worth $23 billion, profit of $3.36 billion, brand awareness of 79% and brand preferability of 77%.

The company therefore developed a market plans. The goals of the market plans is to grow the market share, increase sales and profits, increase the brand's preference and awareness levels. However, in order to improve on the aforementioned areas, the company first had to analyze the current market goals and what weaknesses it has. This was comprehensively shown on the SWOTT analysis of Zilch, and compared with the SWOTT analysis of  Zara, which is the market leader in the fashion industries. All this finally enabled the company to develop a time-based plan on how it would combat these issues and improve its performance in the market.

Contents

ZILCH FASHION COMPANY MARKETING PLAN.. 4

SITUATION ANALYSIS. 4

The internal environment 4

The customer environment 7

External environment 8

SWOT Analysis. 12

Strengths. 12

Weaknesses. 12

Opportunities. 13

Threats. 13

The SWOTT analysis matrix. 14

Developing competitive advantage. 15

Developing a strategic focus. 16

Marketing goals and objectives. 17

MARKETING STRATEGY.. 18

Primary target market 18

Product strategy. 19

Major features and benefits: 20

Pricing strategy. 21

Distribution strategy. 22

Intergraded marketing communication strategy. 22

Marketing implementation. 24

Structural issues. 24

Tactical marketing activities. 25

EVALUATION AND CONTROLS. 27

Formal controls. 27

Informal controls. 28

Marketing audit 29

IMPLEMNTATION schedule and timeline. 30

Product Activities. 30

Pricing Activities. 30

Distribution Activities. 31

IMC Activities. 31

REFERENCES. 31

ZILCH FASHION COMPANY MARKETING PLAN

SITUATION ANALYSIS

The internal environment

Current marketing goals and objectives

To increase the sales of the company

To be the market leader in the clothing industry

To prove product awareness

Maintain the company's brand

Management of the company's brand

In order to achieve the above objectives, the company aims to increase its marketing strategies. This is especially in the aim to achieve more brand awareness and preference. These aim will however be targeted because of the need to protect exclusivity. Quality and uniqueness of the products will also need to be achieved. This starts by the sourcing of quality raw materials and design that the designs developed are current and futuristic.

The mission of the company is to be the company of choice among customers for their varied clothing needs. The above mission is therefore consistent with the goals and objectives of the firm.

Marketing strategy and performance

The firm's current marketing strategy with respect to its marketing mix is consistent, albeit with inconsistent results. The products offered in the Zilch Company clotting line are diverse, ranging from clothes for children to adults of both sexes. The clothes offered by Zilch Company are high quality; hence they target the rich in the society. Pricing is therefore high. The rich in the society purchase products based on their exclusivity, hence promotion is minimal, as the aim is to sell by word of mouth, from one elite to another.  The fashion company has collaborated with over 2000 cloth selling stores to display their products. Once a customer likes their products, an order is made and it should be delivered within 24 hours. Customers can also make specifications in case they need the clothes they have ordered to be customized. The element of customization is working well for the company.

As at December 2016, the sales of the company were $3 billion, profit of $250 million, a market share of 0.98% and brand awareness is at 2% whereas brand preference is 0.5%. When compared to Zara, the leading apparel wear maker in the fashion industry, these statistics paints a picture of failure. As at December 2016, Zara had a market share of 18%, sales worth $23 billion, profit of $3.36 billion, brand awareness of 79% and brand preferability of 77% (Hayes, & Jones, 2017). Zilch's performance represented a 6% drop compared to 2016, against an industry standard growth of 5% over the same period. The key reason for this decline against industry trend is because of a lawed marketing strategy which doesn't translate to sales.

Current and anticipated organizational resources

Zilch has a strong financial position given that it had a net profit of $250 million in December 2016. Moreover, its human capital poll is one of the best in the market due to the remuneration package being high and the freedom which it offer s to employees. It also has strategic financial reserves of $20 million which can only be withdrawn in case of emergency measures that need to be taken to improve the company's performance. There is also a significant investment in research and development, with this sum increasing yearly. The firm also has a good relationship and with a high credit ratings score with suppliers. The firm targets to increase its market share in the future. In order to do this, it may need resources higher than its current capabilities. Fortunately due to its current credit ratings, it can get loans from banks or negotiate with suppliers to get raw materials on creditors.

Current and anticipated cultural and structural issues

The current firm's culture emphasizes on long-term planning. This means that the company tries to look predict futures and make them in advance. The rationale behind this thinking is that when the time comes to supply such an order to the market, the firm will have a short lead time and hence have competitive advantage. The firm's structure is however not supportive to this initiative in strategy because limited funds are allocated to the market research department, hence it may leave the economy with obsolete funds if the prediction turns out to be false.

The customer environment

The current target market of the company is the rich and elites of the society. These kinds of people reside in affluent neighborhoods. Their incomes levels are high; hence they have generally a high household income on an annual basis. The products offered in the Zilch Company clotting line are diverse, ranging from clothes for children to adults of both sexes. The clothes offered by Zilch Company are high quality; hence they target the rich in the society. Pricing is therefore high. The rich in the society purchase products based on their exclusivity, hence promotion is minimal, as the aim is to sell by word of mouth, from one elite to another.  The fashion company has collaborated with over 2000 cloth selling stores to display their products. Once a customer likes their products, an order is made and it should be delivered within 24 hours. Customers can also make specifications in case they need the clothe they have ordered to be customized. The element of customization is working well for the company. The most important stakeholders in the company are its customers. This is because they drive trends and demand. Zilch therefore has to adapt and switch to the demand of customers.

From the reviews of the customers who buy Zilch apparel, they admit that the quality of Zilch products is high. Moreover, the fashion lines of the company are unique in that they are constantly changed to the changing needs of the market. Finally, the price of the products makes it affordable to the elite members of the society. This has however been a disadvantage when it comes to some customers. This is because some fashion houses like Zara offer the same high quality products but at cheaper prices.

External environment

Competition

The major competitor for the company in the manufacture and selling of clothes to the elites and the rich who value quality and exclusive products is Zara. Zara has brand recognition of 79%, with a total budget of $10 billion. Its generic strategies are product customization, and low cost strategy (Mata, 2017).

Characteristics of Zara

According to Anwar (2017), the following are the characteristics of Zara”

Size. It is the largest company in the fashion industry based on market share (18%), sales ($23 billion), and profit( $3.36 billion).

Target market. Zara, just like zilch, targets fashion conscious people whose target is exclusivity.

Marketing capabilities

Product: Zara sells all kind of products, but mostly focuses on women clothes because they are fashion conscious.

Promotion. Zara does not do advertisement on its products. In order to maintain its exclusivity, it just displays it in some stores and relies on world of mouth advertisement.

Distribution. When a product is order by a customer, Zara's lead time is just 10-15 days. It operates its own distribution network.

Pricing. Zara prices its products as low as possible, by just targeting little margins per cloth.

Zara strengths

Strong brand name built over many years

Extensive market research on emerging trends

Low stock inventory

Weaknesses

Customers cannot walk into a shop and buy products. They have to order and wait for 10-15 days.

Another emerging competitor for Zilch is H&M. unlike Zara; H&M does aggressive marketing. It also stocks most of its stores with sufficient stock to eliminate waiting time.

Economic growth and stability

The target customers of Zilch reside in the USA. The US household incomes as at august 2017 grew by 5.2%, compared to 2016. Moreover, the economy of the US had a 3.2% growth as at august 2017 compared to December 2016 (L'Heureux, 2017). This economic growth means that more people are employed, and increase in household incomes translates to more disposable incomes for families. This scenario increases the ability of the target customers to purchase Zilch cloths.

The costs of production and raw materials in the apparel industry are according to region, but it is the cheapest in Asia, hence most apparel companies subcontract or open factories in Asian countries. Acquisitions and mergers are also on the rise. This is because companies are seeking to increase their foothold internationally but don't want to set up structures from scratch. Acquisition and mergers enables companies to inherit customers. The standout acquisitions include Coach buying Stuatz Weitzman for $574 million, New Iconic Brand Group buying shares worth $37 million in Pony, and New Balance acquiring Rockport for $280 million. Patents are vital in the apparel industry as it has helped companies benefit from their innovations and huge investment in R&D. the well-known patents are Versace's patent which is medusa motif, the Vera Wang pateneted wedding dress, and the Louis Vuitton handbag

Political trends

The biggest political activity that may affect the company is the election of Donald Trump as the president of USA. While campaigning for the presidency, he promised to bring back jobs to America. In a bid to do this, he said that he will impose higher tax on imported goods as opposed to those made in America. Zilch manufactures most of its apparel in India due to cheap labor and nearness to raw material. Higher taxes would further increase the price of the goods in the USA (Corral, & Walker, 2017).

Legal and regulatory issues

Gucci versus Forever 21

Gucci lost a case in September 2017, on a case where it sued Forever 21 for selling red-blue-red branded jackets. Gucci claimed that this was their brand and that Forever 21 sought to benefit from it. With the dismissal of the case, it may open up firms' brands to copying and duplication, hence eliminating costs and time spent by fashion companies developing brands. This may also affect Zilch as it has brand recognition by using some signs on cloths (Corral, & Walker, 2017).

Technological advancement

With the advent of the internet, information has been easy to get to the customers. Smartphones and increase in internet connectivity has created a wave of trends on the internet. Some fashion powerhouses like H&M have tapped into this internet craze by drafting the use of celebrities for its marketing. This marketing strategy works, especially for millennial who adore celebrities and want to copy their lifestyle and fashion sense.

Technological advancement has been a double aged sword for Zilch company. This is because though it has enabled the company to track the tastes and preferences of customers, this variables change constantly. With the company producing its cloth apparel 6 months in advance, sometimes stock will have been deemed to be obsolete because the internet allows for the people to follow and adapt to trends.

Sociocultural trends

With the advancement in technology in USA, trends change fast as people try to keep up with celebrities or their peers. This has created a society, where people are more concerned with image, even to the expense of their finances. This is especially true for the millennial. This has meant that the firms' pricing is not an issue as long as the customers are satisfied with it. Moreover, it has forced the company to retain its no-open-promotion strategy so as to maintain the exclusivity nature of its brand. The human resource of the company has therefore been trained to ensure that the products are manufactured in a way that is attractive to millennial.

Responsibility issues of social and ethical affecting the industry is going green and adopting to environment friendly production techniques and recyclable raw materials. This is because customers would rather purchase a product from a social responsible company that from one that isn't.  Though the initial cost of going green may be significant, the Zilch should plan on investing in it since the market leaders Zara and H&M are already going green Scuotto, Giudice,  della,  & Tarba, 2017).

SWOT Analysis

Strengths

Strength 1: unique designs

Zilch produces products with unique designs which appeal to customers. This is due to the huge investment and research on market research. This is different from most competitors who just copy what is currently on fashion, without the foresight of investing on the next market need.

Strength 2: physical evidence in stores

Zilch has collaboration with over 1,000 stores in America to sell its clothing. Customers are therefore able to walk into stores and purchase their clothing they need due to market research prediction. There is no wait time, unlike for Zara clothing where customers have to order and wait for 10-15 days.

Weaknesses

Weakness 1: high prices.

Zilch prices its luxury products highly, such that it may be out of reach by most customers. However, even in cases where customers are able to purchase, they would rather buy from other recognized and even better brands like Zara whose prices are low.

Weakness 2: 6-month production lines

Zilch produces clothing that are six months ahead of time, and I  some cases produces in huge bulk clothes that are in fashion at the moment. This becomes a disadvantage especially with the apparel industry where customer tastes and preferences are change often, hence leaving the company with obsolete stock. Zara does not experience this weaknesses because is produces few pieces for display in select fashion stores and supplies to customers within 10-15 days of ordering.

Opportunities

Opportunity 1: online e-commerce

Zilch should tap into the internet and technological advancement by setting up a site where customers can purchase cloths online. E-commerce has the opportunity of expanding the horizon and market base of Zilch to beyond America. It can then liaise with established logistics companies like FedEx and DHL, CEVA logistics and Panalpin Logistics to deliver the clothing's to customers all over the world.

Opportunity 2: grow market potential

There is a potential to always grow in the market for the company. This is because currently, it is only based in America. The company should expand to other markets, especially where the major brands have not invested in and develop its brand awareness and preference. From there, it will give the company a foundation from which to compete with Zara and H&M.

Threats

Threat 1: low advertising

Currently, Zilch does not advertise. The management and other industry experts have been discussing on where Zilch could have been in terms of market share, revenues and profits had it chose to advertise. Because it deals in production of unique and the latest products, it has the possibility of roping in more customers and increasing its profits, though it may lose the exclusivity tag. Zilch should therefore consider whether or not it should start aggressive advertising.

Threat 2: Reach

Zilch should increase its reach in the market. Currently, due to its exclusivity and trying to maintain its brand image, it has just over 1,000 selected stores in America who sell its clothing. This is in direct contradiction to industry standards, like H&M which has over 10,000 stores in America which stock and sells its product. Zilch should therefore allow any seller store to stock worth its products, otherwise its reach to customers will be limited.

The SWOTT analysis matrix

Strengths:

•Unique designs

•Physical evidence in stores

Opportunities:

•e-commerce

•growing market potential

Weaknesses:

•High prices

•6-month production lines

Threats:

•Low advertising

•low market reach

Developing competitive advantage

Matching strengths with opportunities

Zilch can leverage the use of e-commerce to market its products to more customers. This is because more people use the internet than those who visit apparel stores. This might attract customers to its unique products who may not have heard of it due to the products' low brand awareness. This e-commerce feature should give the company an opportunity to grow the company's market potential but reaching out to customers who prefer their quality and unique products. Moreover, the opportunity to grow market potential can also be achieved by the fact that Zilch apparel is physically present in stores. This opportunity can be exploited further by increasing the number of stores where Zilch apparel is present.

These capabilities are anchored on operational excellence and customer intimacy. The products are unique due to the effort put to research and predicting customer trends and needs. This information is fed to the design and production department. The effect is the production of apparel that are appreciated by customers. This gives the company competitive advantage over other apparel makers in the fashion industry who cannot predict the needs of customers, but produce it after others.

Improving on threats and weaknesses

The biggest threat facing the company is the low levels of advertisement. This has made the reach and brand awareness of Zilch to be equally low. The company can however take advantage of this threat and increase on its levels of advertising. This will increase the brand awareness levels, and enable the company to expand its market reach.

By increasing on advertisement, the company will increase its sales and profits will eventually increase. With such an increase, it gives the company a chance to deal with its weakness of high pricing. Zilch will be able to reduce prices considerably because with high volume sales, it will experience economies of scope and scale.

Developing a strategic focus

The general strategic focus of the Zilch's marketing plan is focused on a niche market targeting high-end consumers. These are consumers who core focus is firs quality and exclusivity and then the price. This may be the rich and wealthy in the society, or even middle class customers who appreciate quality and exclusive clothing. This is why the Zilch's products are highly priced.

The strategic focus of Zilch Company is that it by targeting elites in the society, and those who appreciate unique clothing, the company will be able to tap into a limitless market. it is limitless because users of the product do no mind when the prices charged as long as the quality matches the price. This, coupled with the fact that the company does not advertise, it creates an exclusive perception to its brand. This strategic focus will make up for the strategy used by firms who sell to many customers but at low prices.

Marketing goals and objectives

Marketing goal A: To predict the customer needs and increase equity

Objective A1: to invest in data mining and collection and field research agents. After these data is collected and analyzed. After this analysis, the product development team will then translate this data into designs that they think will be needed in the market in the new future. This will increase customer satisfaction. The company should be able to product customer needs, tastes and preferences for the next 12 months.

Objective A2: Restock stores with new designs every two weeks. Whereas some companies like H&M make restock stores with new designs after 6 months, Zilch should do so in only two weeks. This will increase the frequency rate with which potential customers visit stores, hence increasing their satisfaction as it significantly increases the chances of Zilch making models that will satisfy customers.

Marketing goal B: To Increase brand loyalty

Objective B1: to increase the brand awareness and recognition of the company. The company's current brand awareness is only 2%. Brand awareness should be increased, and the company should target 15% brand awareness within 1 year. This will be measured by the searches the company's products receive from online users.

Objective B2: To increase the brand preference of the company. The company's brand preference is only 0.5%. Zilch should target to have a brand preference of 3% within 1 year. An increase in brand awareness will be measured by increase in sales in the proportion of the increase in the brand preference scale.

MARKETING STRATEGY

Primary target market

Identifying characteristics

The target market for Zilch according to age is not specific. This is because it currently caters for all age groups. 0-18 years customers make up 15%, 19-40 years makes up 60%, whereas over 40 years make up 25%. These are the parts of the population who are coconscious to changing market trends in the markets. Another key characteristic of the customers of Zilch products is that they should be high earning individual, who don't mind paying premium for high quality and unique products. This is the reasons why the just over 100 Zilch Company Apparel stores relocated in the USA are situated at affluent neighborhoods and shopping centers where he rich and wealthy shop and live.

Basic needs, wants, preferences, or requirements

Though Zilch products are not basic needs, they could be classified as basics needs for the most fashion conscious customers who crave for exclusivity. The tastes and preferences for these customers require that the fashion should be exclusive, unique and high quality. Moreover, the general outlook of the cloth should be in line with the trends in the fashion industry but should not be unique.

Buying habits and preferences:

The buying habits of the target market should be frequent. This is because the high pricing of the products by the company means that only a select group is targeted. For the Zilch to make enough sales to rival companies who charge low prices for their products like Zara, they expects customers to come back frequently. This is why it is now working on restocking its stores every two weeks so as to increase the frequency of the customers visiting stores to purchase its apparel.

Product strategy

Brand name:

The brand name of the company, Zilch, should remain unchanged. This is because changing the name of the company would reverse the gains made by the company as it already has a brand awareness of 2% and a brand preference of 0.5%.

The logo design for the company should remain as currently is. As with the brand name, changing the logo of the company would mean that the company would have eliminated years of hard work and painstakingly making the logo recognized by customers. For the loyal customers of the company, they are enthusiastic about buying any clothing product apparel with the logon of the company, as long as they can verify its authenticity

The products should be packaged in a material that IA biodegradable. This is because in keeping with the social and corporate responsibility of the company to be environmental conscious, biodegradable packaging would not be of harm to the environment if users bought the company's clothing and disposed of the packaging material incorrectly. Moreover, when packaging the product, it should be branded with the name of the company as well as the logo of the company so as to ease recognition by customers.

Major features and benefits:

Raw material and packaging material. The raw and packaging materials for the company's products are biodegradable. This should be able to attract customers who appreciate corporate companies who are conscious of the environment.

The products of the company are of high quality and are unique. This is therefore the reasons why they are highly priced. Moreover, new designs come out after every two weeks. With such frequency of churning out new designs, the probability of customers finding products that satisfied their needs is highly increased.

Differentiation strategy:

Zilch's differentiation strategy is to ensure that all its produces new fashion apparels every two weeks. This is a departure from industry standards where new apparels are produced every 6 months. Another competitive advantage for the company which is a differentiation strategy is to give customers the freedom to order customized products. If the number of customized clothing are increased, these production can share some production processes which then reduces the overall cost of production.

Supplemental products

The company should developed a 24/7 customer service call centers where customer can call to enquire information that may help them increase their customer satisfaction levels. If a customer ordered for a customized cloth, the company should give him/her periodical updates on the progress of their clothing. Finally, the company should put a customer service agent at every shop where its products are available. This agent should be trained by the company and their roles should be to help the customer with their needs as well as to collect information on the needs of the customers, hence enabling the company to predict future trends accurately.

Connection to value

The core utility of Zilch company is selling quality and unique products at high prices. These products are targeted at the rich and elite members of the society who are conscious of their fashion sources. The supplemental values of Zilch fashion products are that customers can customize their products. A customer may walk into a store with Zilch products and if they do not find  a fashion sense that suits them, they can give their specifications to the sales agents of the company who are then tasked with communicating the message to the fashion and design teams. These customized orders should then be delivered to the customers within 14 days.

Pricing strategy

Zilch charges premium prices for its products. This is because its pricing objective is to target the elites in the society who value exclusivity and unique prices. These customers would therefore be willing to pay high amount of prices so as to be part of these exclusive club. The company's key competitor in the production of quality and unique goods is Zara. However, Zara's prices are lower than Zilch's prices. This is because though they produce quality and unique products, they do so at low prices and target little margins.

As mentioned earlier, Zilch's prices being high is due to their uniqueness and quality of their products. Coupled with the fact that they target an exclusive market, they have to keep their products high so as to avoid the fashion label being worn by everybody else. Due to their cost of production being significantly lower than their selling prices, the company breaks even and makes profits. One of the specific pricing tactics is to allow customers to customize their products and delivering it within 2 weeks, hence increasing the exclusivity of their brand even more.

Distribution strategy

Zilch products are made in bulk in advance, in line with its advanced research and development teams who are tasked with predicting the market demand for the foreseeable 1 year. Zilch however adjust this time to be just 6 months as it recognizes that fashions change constantly. After their production, Zilch fashion clothing is then supplied to the just over 1,000 apparel stores it partners with all over USA. These stores are in strategic positions. Apart from the stores ordering the type of outfits and designs that are demand, they are also given designs that represent a futuristic view of the market. Though Zilch does not own these stores, it ensures that it has an in-house sales person at all these stores whose main aim it to deal with the customers purchasing Zilch products and communicate their needs to the company. If a customer orders a customized cloth, the sales persons is supposed to communicate this information immediately with the designers who are then tasked to delivering it to the customers' preferred location within 14 days. This differentiation strategy is unique to only Zilch and Zara.

Intergraded marketing communication strategy

The overall IMC strategy is to increase the brand perception among its potential customers. Though there have been calls for the company to open up its advertising and market it aggressively like H&M, Zilch has resisted these pleas. This is because it believes that there are still more elites and the rich who want exclusivity, and aggressive marketing would negate this view. The IMC objectives are to target more of these rich customers by communicating in ways that is only unique to them. the budget for the IMC is $20 million.

Consumer promotions marketing

Advertising strategy: because Zilch wants to target the rich and the elite in the society, print and electronic media is too generalized. It should therefore put up billboards in exclusive and upmarket residential and business areas.

Public relations strategy: all its PR strategies should be done is such a way that it portrays the quality, uniqueness and exclusivity of the company's products. Messages meant for public consumption should therefore be geared toward fulfilling this strategy.

Personal selling strategy: through the company's research team of all its potential customers especially through research online, the company should target these potential customers. Specifically, it should send personalized sales teams to them to convince them on the company's products, vis-à-vis their prices.

Consumer sales promotion strategy: in the over 1,000 stores where Zilch company distribute its products, it should have an in-house sales agent present. This sales agent is responsible for convincing customers to buy Zilch products, but without sounding desperate. Theirs is just to show the customers the value of the company's products in terms of their exclusivity, uniqueness and quality. Beyond that, it will be up to the customer to determine whether the aforementioned qualities suit their fashion and lifestyle needs.

Trade promotions marketing

Advertising strategy: in all the stores where the company has a presence and stock its products, it should have a board outside these stores with the name and the log of the company on it. This will inform potential customers that the company's products are being sold there.

Public relations: Zilch should stock in stores that are associated with high-end and exclusive clothing. Moreover, these stores which the company stocks its goods should be synonymous with selling high quality and unique clothes.

Personal selling strategy: the stores which the company collaborates with by selling their products in them should set up customer care desks and give the company information that pertain to it. Moreover, the stores selling Zilch products should provide Zilch with a list of potential customers based on store visits or searches, so that the company can target them personally.

Trades sales promotion push: when a fashion style that is still on the stores is about to go out of fashion, Zilch should liaise with the concerned stores to ensure that these cloths are sold. One of the strategies that can be undertaken is offering discounts, or free delivery services to customers.

Marketing implementation

Structural issues

For the marketing strategy to be effective when being implemented there needs to be collaboration between all the departments and personnel involves. Because the exclusivity, high quality and uniqueness of Zilch's products are its selling point, the marketing strategy should work towards portraying these traits. This is why selling and promotional activities are only targeted towards these kinds of customers, from collection of data, designing clothes, sourcing raw materials and delivery to customers.

There however needs to be a change in authority with respect to the reports from the sales people. Currently, the sales agents in the various stores report to their department head who then reports to the designs teams. When the sales people market the product and get the tastes and preference of the customers, they should report this information directly to the design teams to avoid any distortion of information that may occur and limit the clarity of the initial message.

There are employees who feel that the company's marketing strategies is limited and that the company could gain more market share if it reduces the prices and target any potential customer. With this mentality, employees' motivation for making decreases. These employees should be trained to understand the brand and exclusivity advantage which the company is trying to leverage. By buying into the company's marketing strategy, productivity from this front will increase.

Tactical marketing activities

Specific Tactical Activities

Person/Department

Responsible

Required

Budget

Completion

Date

Product Activities

1.Develop high quality products

2.develop a high variety of products

3.ensure the variety of products developed meet the needs of the customers

Chandip Signh,

Research, development and designs department

$40 million

02/01/2018

Pricing Activities

1.marginaly reduce the prices of the goods

2.ensure that prices match quality of the goods

3.set the prices of the customized clothing

Phil Jones

Finance department

$200,000

04/01/2018

Distribution/Supply Chain Activities

1.how to distribute products to all the stores across America in the shortest lead time

2.reduce the lead time for delivering a customized order

3. identify additional stores situated in prime locations where the company can sell its products

Ann Wolmack

Sales department

$6 million

07/01/2018

IMC (Promotion) Activities

1. identify IMC activities that will improve the brand and market share in the fashion industry.

2.maintain the brand and exclusivity of Zilch products

3.target more elite and rich people in the society

Linda May,

Marketing department

$20 million

10/02/2018

EVALUATION AND CONTROLS

Formal controls

Input controls. The most important input control which the company needs to put in place before rolling out the marketing plan is the availability of financial resources. Since the company has been in existence, R&D and human resources have always delivered and remain the same for this marketing plan. However, the financial needs for the new marketing plan have increased, hence the need for more planning and controls on the expenditures in order to maximize the potential of this marketing plan.

Process controls: the process control that has a high effect on determining the success of the marketing plan during the implementation stage is employee motivation. First, the employees need to buy in with the marketing strategy of the Zilch Company. This can be achieved by taking into account their suggestions during and/or before the implementation stage. Next, there needs to be a results-based compensation program. The higher the performance and productivity of the marketing plan, the higher the level of compensation.

Output controls

Overall performance standards. The general performance and success, or lack thereof of the marketing plans will be measured after its implementation. The marketing plan will be deemed to be a success if all the following metrics show an increase: market share, brand awareness and preference, sales, revenues, and profits.

Product performance. With the quality, uniqueness and pricing of the clothes sold by Zilch Company, performance will be measured on whether more customers view the products as exclusive.

Price performance standards. The price charged by Zilch is higher than that charged by its competitors. Whether this price will be effective in the marketing strategy will be marked by the increased and repeat customers purchasing the products at those prices. Moreover, prices will be adjusted periodically, and the response in the change in demand vis-à-vis change in prices will be an important measure.

Informal controls

Employee self-controls

As explained earlier, one of the biggest challenges facing Zilch's marketing plan is the employee's not buying into the strategy of the company. The success of the company hinges on their motivation. They need to get channels that will be used by the employees to channel any concerns they may have over the marketing strategies of the company. These concerns, if plausible, should be implemented, hence it will make the employees fell valued and motivated.

Employee social control

The social control associated with Zilch Company is diligence and delivery of tasks in time. This value is not only seen in the marketing department, but all throughout the company. It is inculcated in employees as soon as they enter the company. During the implementation stage of the marketing plan, employees, in their various roles, should practice diligence and time adherence as this is one of the traits which customers appreciate in the company.

Cultural control

Zilch has employees of different cultural backgrounds. This also holds true for the customer of the company who are from different cultural backgrounds. Employees of the company should be taught to maneuver and deal with customers of different cultural backgrounds when implementing the marketing plan.

Marketing audit

The monitoring and audit of all marketing activities will be done periodically. This is because marketing activities should have both long-term and short-term benefits. Whereas the increase in the company's brand awareness and perception index is expected to be a slow and long-term objective, increase in sales should be a short-term goal. Some marketing activities like having sales people in all stores that sale Zilch's products is meant to immediately increase the sales of the company. Such sales agents should therefore be measured preferably after every two months. If there is no increase in sales, then this strategy should be rethought.

For the marketing audit, the company should have an internal auditor whose are activities are not linked with the marketing departments, but he/she should be well versed in the marketing filed. Such a marketing auditor is supposed to align the various marketing activities with their intended outcomes.

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