Executive Summary: The Metolius Agency is a Graphic design and visual communication firm based in new Concord, New Hampshire. Operating from a small office the company will be targeting a consumer base of 5-15 year old companies and provide them with unique perspectives on corporate identity and visual communication. For the first 7 months Keivs will be handling the firm’s affairs alone after which he will hire an assistant to help him in design and administration. The competitive edge Metolius has is Keivs’ knowledge of not only creative but also business skills that will make it possible for the company to attract its business-oriented clients because of a practical backing to their creative approach Overtime the company will grow due to its low overhead, creative and practical designs attracting increasing consumer attention, reaching profits in the first 9 months and generating $27,347 by the third year.
Objective: With a realistic mission statement that focuses on delivering above expectation to customers and good customer relationships, the main objective of the firm is to s to position The Metolius Agency as a creative, unconventional, and innovative graphic design and visual communication firm in the Concord, NH area. In addition Metolius will set its marketing objectives to:
a. Increase visibility in the market. b. Generate 30% new business through referrals each quarter, after year one. c. Strengthen brand equity through informal polling during networking activities. The financial objectives will include:
a. Maintain positive, steady, growth each month.
b. Reach profitability by the end of year one.
c. Continue to decrease the variable costs associated with serving a project.
Situation Analysis: The Metolius Agency requires a good analysis of both the
= market and itself to serve its customers better. The information gathered by the company about the market shows that the potential market is divided into small and medium companies and has shown a CAGR (compounded annual growth rate) of 7.65% over 4 years (2002-2006). The graphic design industry reached $812 million in 2000 and it is predicted that for the next five years it will grow at 5.6%. The increasing desires to appear professional and use the Internet have been attributed to this growth in the industry. Also contrary to the decade old market trend of advertisement agencies offering full service with minimal or no outsourcing, the Metolius agency will concentrate only on their specific skill sets. The company plans to provide customers with a wide selection of its designs and services, better accessibility by centralizing service provision, impressive customer service and competitive pricing.
The services offered will be charged by the hour and $75 will roughly be the charge/hour demanded by Metolius. Through SWOT analysis it has been established that the strengths of the company are focus, elegant office space and amalgamation of the business with the creative sense, and the main opportunities for the firm are a growing market, growth based on technological advancement and also low co-relation with downfalls in the economy. The struggle to be cutting edge, to inform the customers and remove time for marketing activities have been identified as weaknesses, and local competition (i.e. large agencies, freelancers and Kinko’s), easy to use software that allow potential clients to cater their own needs and a demographic change due to shift in local industries are the main threats to the firm.
Marketing Strategy: A graphic firm relies on referrals and efficient networking and not advertising to generate sales. Based on the market research of several focus groups and a research project completed by three University of New Hampshire graduates, Metolius has devised a 3 point marketing strategy, consisting of networking, client referral, targeted customer acquisition to gain visibility and increase sales. The networking will involve using Kievs’ personal and professional contacts to arrange meetings and get customers. Client referrals will come from the customers and the chambers of commerce who will be impressed by Kievs’ work.
Kiev will also be shortlisting companies and finding ways to approach their decision makers and close a deal. Also putting content of all releases on the internet and management of search engine submissions will be done by outsourcing the work to specialists at an internet and e-commerce consultancy firm, “1st-at-the-top.com”. The firm has identified its market to be the small and medium scale companies in Concord that have been operating for 5-15 years. Metolius will position itself as a focused and innovative graphic design and visual communication firm in the market by dwelling on Kiev’s diverse background of business and creativity.
Marketing Mix: The Metolius Agency’s marketing mix is comprised of approaches to pricing, distribution, advertising and promotion, and customer service.
* Pricing: The pricing scheme will be based on per project fee that will be calculated by the hours required for a project plus any other additional costs. * Distribution: The distribution of services will be either via the central office or via the Internet. * Advertising and Promotion: The most successful activities will be a comprehensive networking campaign, as well as a targeted customer acquisition system. * Customer Service: In order to ensure long-term profitability, all expenses will be born for customer service to achieve total customer satisfaction.
Metolius requires monthly revenue of $8760 to break even. It is forecasted that in 3 years time (2002, 2003, 2004) the company will grow sufficiently such that the total sales revenue will roughly double to $145,392 and the total expenses even though will rise they will get smaller in comparison to the Revenues by as much as 1.5% and become 4.35% at the end of the third year. Therefore it could be concluded that the business will always be yielding and fast growing.
Review and Control: The following areas will be monitored to gauge performance:
– Revenue: monthly and annual.
– Expenses: monthly and annual.
– Repeat business.
– Customer service.
This will be done by setting up a start and end date for a jobs, assigning the budget for the job and the job to a manager and department so that it can be monitored.
Marketing Organization: Initially Kievs alone will head and manage the marketing function till he hires an assistant for help in the 7th month.
Contingency Plan: The difficulties and risks posed to Metolius and the worst case scenarios must be addressed in the contingency plan. Problems with generating visibility, landing large projects for increase income and increasing competition are some of the difficulties the firm will face. The worst-case scenarios will be if the firm can’t achieve profits and must liquidate assets to cover liabilities.
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