Unit 2 Marketing Essentials
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Marketing is an essential part for every business as it helps an organization to deliver its message among its consumers via various mediums. The main purpose of running a marketing campaign by companies is to boost sales through promotions and to enhance the brand recognition (Gaši?, Janji?and ?avi?, 2020). There are multiple mediums of creating awareness, such as, advertising, sales and publicity. This process begins just after a new product or the service is built and for the purpose of publicity and brand recognition, marketing is initiated by organizations (Mihajlovi? and Trajkovi?, 2020). For any business, viz. small or big one, marketing essentials create a space for all the companies to create a place in a market.
The century old British multinational corporation, Unilever is a billion-dollar company which has branches over 190 countries in the world. Unilever was established on 2nd September, 1929. Basically the company is known for manufacturing and distributing beverage items, cleaning items and personal care products across the globe (Murphyand Murphy, 2018). The company is headquartered in London, England. The net income of Unilever was €6.073 billion in 2020. Unilever has been known for acquiring a number of significant marketing talents in their workforce that has left a huge contribution in the success factor of the company.
This particular report will be developed based on the discussion of marketing essentials in relation to the most prominent company, Unilever. Firstly, the document will highlight the chief roles of marketing in the business expansion of the company. After this, the report will identify the key elements and importance of marketing plan in the Unilever Company. The next paragraph will establish an interrelation of marketing with the other functions of the business and will conduct an in detail comparison between Unilever and another established company. Lastly, the report will establish a sound marketing plan for the company using the 7ps Marketing mix tool.
Diverse Brand categories of Unilever
Unilever is one of the powerful multinational company of the world. The company has 13 brands and offers personal care products, refreshment products and food and beverage products etc. Apart from this the multinational company has many sustainable brands like, Dove, Axe, Hellmann’s, Lux, Lipton, Sunsilk, Magnum, Omo, surf, so on. The company operate in 190 countries and has bagged sales of 1 billion pound from 13 brands. Presently, as per the statement ofDharmayanti, Tika and Sudana (2017), Unilever has 161 products as per their product line,
- Home care- 34 products
- Refreshment and Food- 68 products
- Beauty and personal care-59 products
2. Explanation of the key roles and responsibilities of Marketing ADD UNILEVER
Marketing management can be described as the procedure of preparing and implementing various advertising approaches. Pricing, advertising, distribution, and sales are examples of marketing principles that complement the firm's intended audience. Marketing's roles can be summarized as follows:
Marketing Information System: Marketing information systems, or MIS, give data on a variety of topics, including product, strategy, and execution, as well as marketing strategy control (Minton et al., 2021). For example, MIS displays genuine logistical data, allowing the supply chain to operate more efficiently. Unilever is used by Unilever principally to establish strong relationship with managers and suppliers and most importantly to gather information, provide security and privacy from the managers in a limited time.
Market Research: One of the most regarded function of marketing unit is market research. Unilever initiates these research to understand and acquire knowledge regarding the customer, product and prices offered in a market (Hall, 2019). These results of research assist in understanding the requirements of the consumers and communicate with them in the best possible way through various marketing means.
Brand Equity: In present, market is filled with numerous products and services that visibly indicates the degree of competitiveness in the market (Alam, 2020). Customers get multiple options from various brand and they tend to incline to those products which offer value added product in a reasonable price. Concerning this, the multinational brand, Unilever creates a strong brand image among the consumers through effective communication of marketing.
Supervise market environment: The advertising phase is essential in identifying new advancements in the business environment, as these advancements give a positive result for Unilever’s service and product expansion. Depending on the market trends, socioeconomic dynamics, internally and externally changes in market, economic and political alterations, new developments are initiated (Laurie and Mortimer, 2019).
Market Strategies: The formulation of plans and strategies for the corporate organization is the first duty of marketing. The institution's management must know the wants and expectations of their targeted audience and supply products in order to satisfy those needs (Gesualdi, 2019). Companies use advertising to strike a balance between corporate goals and market opportunities. The billion-dollar company, Unilever, integrate their global strategy with local community for engaging the consumers to buy their worldwide famous products.
Market Segmentation: Market segmentation is the process of dividing consumers into smaller cluster for identifying and targeting the potential customer. Segmentation is based on various characteristics, like, age group, personality, income, behavior etc. In this globalized era, market segmentation is crucial (Abou-Shouk, 2018). Hence, market segmentation helps an organization target a specific consumer group from the diverse market. Unilever has understood that it is not possible to deliver requirements of all the consumers at once and use market segmentation to gain competitive advantage. The Anglo Dutch Multinational company use segmentation based on geography, behavior, social class and behavior. For surf excel, the company basically target the teen agers, children and adults with an average family income of 18000 per month. For personal care products, Unilever target developing and developed region.
3. Key elements of Marketing
Marketing functions are enclosed with multiple organizational functions like, finance, advertising and distribution system and so on which are the activities of marketing process. Most Vital marketing elements includes,
Research:Market research is a process conducted among the consumers to understand the sustainability of a new product or service (McDaniel Jr and Gates, 2018). It helps to recognize the potential consumers and gather necessary informationregarding their interest about a service or product (Kienzlerand Kowalkowski, 2017). Unilever uses market research to understand the gaps in a product and to improve the offered products and also to examine the demand of new innovative ideas. The company is taking high advantage in collecting data through market research. In order to do this, this multinational company is implementing AI for data collection and analysis. For the purpose of market research, Unilever focus on the statements of community and associate these data with social data and core center data through DVOC or Digital Voice of the Consumer for improving their products and to drive high revenue. The company has invested around 900 million on the Research and Development department to understand the changing nature of the consumers.
Strategy:This is the second step comes after accomplishing market research. All the data and information collected through market research is analyzed to understand the weakness and strength. As per the result, these processed data are utilized to create appropriate marketing strategy for the organization (Key and Czaplewski, 2017). These strategies are important for acquiring competitive advantage in the market and to achieve success. Again, these strategies are created based on the outcomes and possibilities accumulated through research. Unilever’s global strategy is to focus on the health improvement and well-being and increase environmental footprint through their products. Some of the most crucial marketing strategies initiated by Unilever is Competitive pricing, Distribution pricing and Product line pricing.
Planning:The next element comes after the successful completion of research and strategy is Planning process. In this process, the marketing department include predict sales figure, communication, distribution and plan finance of the business (Lidstoneand MacLennan, 2017). The planning is developed to make effective strategies that will convert into the success of the organization. Unilever has been very much alerted for building customer centric business strategy and to enhance the value of the products to the consumers.
Tactics:The fourth element of the marketing is tactics. Tactics are usually created to attract a large number of consumers and it aims to promote sales with various offers, such as, buy two get one free offers (Fulgoni, 2018). Most of the marketing of Unilever has used mainly generic strategy where the main focus will be on the product features and on the value of the product. Apart from this, the company also give major importance on the marketing based on the festivals and occasions of a country.
4. Importance of marketing plan
Marketing strategy is essential for creating bridge among the consumers and the brand. Unilever’s marketing plan has always been regarded for its uniqueness and creating impact. Chiefly, the marketing department of Unilever promotes the face of the company. Therefore, the creation of the strong brand reputation in the mind of the consumer owes a significant part to the marketing strategies of the company. Apart from this, the marketing plan of Unilever has various roles and responsibilities, such as,
Create a Brand Image among the Consumers: The chief purpose of marketing is to establish the value of the brand among its consumers (Wadhwa, N.D.). Unilever’s promotion is focused on demonstrating the safety of the offered products through transparent communication with the consumers. To ensure the safe image, the multinational brand also adds other channels like care line service, product labels for its consumers (Reza, N.D.).
Educate about the Brand information: Another role of Unilever’s marketing promotional strategies is to educate the consumers to take the right decision (Dole N.D.). In this regard, Unilever provide sufficient knowledge and information to its consumers to assist in the buying decision of the consumers. This information tries to provide relevant solution to the consumers due to the high competition and variety of option available in the market. Again other information like, product offers, discounts and best deals are also conveyed through marketing.
Increase business growth: The purpose of marketing is of course to create awareness but the main objective behind establishing the image is definitely to increase the growth of the business and boost the revenue of the multinational company, Unilever (Hassoun and Karim, 2020) Through various means of marketing, businesses acquire more potential consumers and acquire higher margins.
Maintain sustainability: “Marketing is more like food than it is medicine.” stated by Crowd Favorite. The sustainability of a company is crucially dependent on the marketing. It is marketing that keeps up the image of Unilever in the mind and lack of promotion can also diminish the customer relationship. Therefore, marketing benefits in sustaining the presence of Unilever Company and helps a business to flourish (Nathaniel, N.D.).
Fig 2: Total revenue of Unilever from the year 2017-2020 (Source: Nathaniel, N.D.)
5. Analysis of Interrelation of Marketing with other functions of Unilever
The Marketing function can be described also as functions of a business corporation which support it on in discovering and obtaining potentially successful products in the market, along with aiding in product promotion. Market analysis, product strategy, development process, promotion, sales, accounting, customer support, and other activities are prevalent in commercial companies. The function of marketing includes, customer service, promotion, sales, product planning, market research etc. The marketing strategies are essential for the company's success and include numerous tasks of the multinational corporation. Strategic planning, marketing research, sales support systems, product development, finance, distribution systems, and human resource sections are all examples of marketing functions (KHASIMSHA, 2018). These marketing activities explore multiple roles in facilitating growth, e.g. Marketing is closely associated with the different significant functions of an organization.
Relation of Marketing with other functions of an organization
(Source: KHASIMSHA, 2018)
The association between marketing activities and other functions of Unilever can be defined as follows: marketing functions are essential to any business, and as a result, other sectors and organizational departments are interconnected to one another. It can also be attributed to the fact that marketing activities necessitate support from the corporation's other different departments in order to function properly.
In Unilever, marketing activities are independent entities, but each unit and role is tied together so that increase the company's financial performance (Mujanovicand Damnjanovic, 2018). The primary focus of communication through marketing is to boost the firm’s profitability through raising purchases, which can be accomplished by involving all of Unilever's divisions at the very same time.
6. Comparison of 7P’s Marketing Mix between Unilever and P & G company
One of the key competitors of the British Dutch multinational company is P &G or Procter & Gamble company. The company is an American multinational company was established in 1837. It offers a diverse range of personal care products, hygienic products etc. Total revenue of P& G was $70.95 billion in 2020 where the total revenue of Unilever was approximately 50.7 billion euros in 2020. Both of the companies make those products which people use every day and have similar global reach.
Procter & Gamble Co.
Like the diverse offered products, Unilever also has diverse price range (Tien, N.D.). The company follows competitive pricing policy and the price range is affordable to everyone. Apart from this, Unilever applies captive product pricing strategy and that helps to complement with other products. Likewise, Lakme lotions are less costly than Lakme lipsticks.
In the 1990’s, the pricing strategy of P & G was primarily based upon the brand value and the products. For having a large number of product variety, the brand has developed different policies for different range of products. But these policies and prices are also adjustable as per the market value (Zhangand Fan, 2020, November). Depending on the nature of the competitive product, the organizationselects the range of product price. Again, for the quality and premium goods, P& G keeps a high pricing policy.
The British Multinational consumer goods company owns almost 400 brands and has diversified products. The company sells products of almost each and every category, such as, personal care, food, refreshments, beverage, home care etc. Most of the largest selling and globally recognized brands include, Flora, Dove, Lynx, Heartbrand, Knorr, Sure, Rexona, Tresmme, Fair & Lovely, Pears, Vaseline, Rin detergent and personal care products (Ullah, 2021). The company has established its name in the consumer goods market for providing promising quality to the consumers. The products are sold in 180 countries all over the world. Unilever products are beneficial and convenient.
Procter & Gamble also produce a wide range daily used of goods. The main objective of the company is to provide products to the consumers in an affordable price. The major categories of brands offered by P & G are, Health and well-being, Household care products and, Beauty brands. The most demanding products of the company include, Joy, Olay, Head & Shoulders, pampers, tide, Pantene, whisper etc. The countries where the P & G products are available, are, Asia, Africa, New Zealand, Middle East, Australia, America, North America and Latin America.
Unilever has an extensive reach to the consumers. Globally, in 180 countries, Unilever sell its products and has established a reputable brand name among the mind of consumers. The company focuses on their present market where it has a strong hold already and focus on product improvement more. Currently, Unilever has been striving to build local extensive root in the developing countries (Jain and Sharma, 2018). The company exports its product all over the world. For the purpose of product distribution Unilever opt for stores and subsidiaries and retailers, such as, Walmart. Unilever products can also be purchased from online shopping sites like, Amazon, Ebay.
Procter & Gamble has a global network and the company operates in 80 countries and the products are sold in more than hundred and sixty countries all over the world, such as, USA, China, India, UK etc (Jainand Sharma, 2018). The company has established a strong network of manufacture and distribution of its products. The network channel of P& G built with manufacturers and wholesalers (Chyrvaand Chyrva N.D.). Manufacturers produce the goods and wholesalers are responsible for product distribution. The primary distributors of the goods are chemist shop, mall, retail shops and big markets.
Having a wide variety of products sold in various countries of the world, Unilever has a wide and different range of promotional policies. In the global market, Unilever promote their products to get competitive advantage. Mainly, Unilever marketing campaigns are done through electronic and print media (Azzahra et al., 2020). Along with this, discounts with various schemes and attached coupons are also provided with newspapers. Before launching Tresmme shampoo in Brazil, Unilever has distributed free 10 million samples in Brazil.
The P & G company invest a lot on online marketing. For this purpose, Procter & Gamble has tie-ups with celebrities, like Karenna Kapoor, Katrina Kaif, to influence the consumers. Apart from this they also sponsor various TV shows like, Texas, Our private World and Guiding light etc.
The sales and marketing team of Unilever plays the vital role in marketing effort. The company has shown significant effort in training their employees through various methods even, the company have advanced technology to train their workers efficiently (CHRISTIANIS, 2020). This British company also provide customer service on call to assist the issues faced by consumers.
In P & G, here also the sales team and the marketing team are the most crucial for marketing purpose. As per 2020, there are 99000 people work in the company (Mathews and Nair, 2020). They have well trained their employees to handle queries and understanding the requirements of the consumers.
Unilever has offline services in retails store and has online delivery service as well. Computer systems receives orders and the ordered good is delivered from inventory to the delivery service provider (Chimpibul, N.D.).
P & G is using high tech technologies for product manufacturing and has been using various systems to be alerted when inventory is low (Behnam, Ayough and Mirghaderi, 2018). Apart from this, P & G also has online delivery system
Unilever product packaging are in distinct color and the company also provide distinct colorful shelve to the retailers that helps consumers to easily recognize the product (Makower, 2019). Apart from this, Unilever has user friendly online website from where consumers can easily view product images with high resolution.
Like Unilever, their packaging is unique and colorful that helps consumers to locate the products and the company allows consumers to visit online website and check the products (Chandwaskar, 2020).
7. 7Ps marketing mix for building marketing plan for Unilever
Marketing mix is a combination of various marketing tools developed to achieve the organizational objectives. In 1953, ‘Marketing Mix’ was first introduced by Neil Borden. The marketing mix is applied in a variety of ways by different corporate organizations (Thabitand Raewf, 2018). Most of it is influenced by market demographics, corporate services and products, market size, and size of the company. The marketing mix is a tool that assists marketers in comprehending the product.
Unilever is a multinational company and globally over 165000 employees work in the company (Murphy and Murphy, 2018). The marketing mix of Unilever contribute a large amount of profitability. Therefore, being a leading firm, the company has to strengthen more its marketing mix to address various challenges in the global market (Ruchdaponkul, N.D.)Considering the evaluation and analysis of comparison of marketing mix between Unilever and P & G, a marketing plan has been suggested to boost the companies’ profitability.
Price: In order to attract more consumers, Unilever should add more discounts to their products. Low price will attract more consumers and will acquire more consumers. Apart from this, to lower the product price, this British multinational company can decrease a percentage off from the goods. The psychological pricing system will be more impactful for the company. The price can be done $98 in place of $100 that people eventually consider to be low (IBOJO, N.D.). Furthermore, to gain competitive advantage, Unilever should offer new item with offers and initially in lower prices than the competitors.
Product:Basically, the billion-dollar company sells its products through online websites and through wholesalers. To generate more sales, this powerful company should stress more on their social media posts and should turn their online websites into more user friendly (Zhang and Fan, 2020) Apart from this, the company should ensure that they choose large retailers to boost their sales. In addition to this, Unilever’s company oriented retail stores can save up their extra expenditure and will increase their profitability.
Promotion:This established company basically uses the traditional method of marketing. As per the current trend, Unilever must undergo through digital marketing and should hire social media influencers like P & G. In order to increase product awareness, Unilever should also initiate advertising campaign with messages on social media platforms (Paranjape, 2018). Another action can be done by the company is to collect data of their potential consumers through effective interaction.
Place:Increasing social media appearance is very much crucial for this multi-billion-dollar company (CHRISTIANIS, 2020). This will allow the company to generate more sales and save up the marketing cost. The company should also focus on the online website to increase personal selling.
People:To increase the employee productivity and to enhance the sales number, the workforce and sales people of this multinational company should undergo through updated sales trainings to deliver more value to the company. Apart from this, a reward system for the sales people can be initiated by the company (Rabu, 2019).
Process:As per the advancement of technology, Unilever should computerize all the system to handle operational processes to obtain multiple advantages (Azeez, 2019). Moreover, innovation and improvement both the processes should be adapted for achieving time efficiency and to increase profitability.
Physical Evidence:Feedback process can benefit the company in a multiple way. Collecting feedback from consumers can be helpful for the constant improvement of Unilever. It is also necessary for Unilever to set up a user friendly store to encourage consumers to purchase products.
From the discussion done above, it can be summed up that the research has successfully drawn out the role of marketing and their interrelationship other functions of an organization. Unilever is undoubtedly a globally powerful company. But the use of 7P’s tool has assisted toevaluate and understandthe necessary gaps to be omitted in the marketing process of Unilever. The British multinational company believes in profitable growth and to support that the company initiate various programs but to maintain their successful brand value there should be an excellent integration and coordination between marketing department and brand managers.
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