I often hear about advertising at any forms such as television, radio, and internet. I also become familiar with the famous terminology: marketing mix, which composes of Place, Product, Promotion, and Price. Marketing consists of the measures I use to reach and persuade our prospects. In television shows, for example, especially within the prime time, I am often attracted to see an advertising that interests us. Consumer goods at low, middle, and high ends are racing to take advertising spots in television during the prime time.
The reason is I believe that the period is the time when the highest number of watchers is in front of their television sets so that it will have a great chance to influence people who watch. Recently, it is a common to see that many companies promote online at any most visited web sites because their vast audience makes the sites becomes the perfect place to showcase products advertising. In addition to be media for promotion, web sites also effective for companies to give information for investors such as press release, annual report, and financial information to name a few.
Concerning the many faces of promotional campaign, in this paper, I will present a strategic communication plan for a company named Burt’s Bees Inc. Prior to providing details of communication plan for Burt’s Bees; I will discuss the elements of creating the communication and the company’s background to obtain the insight about the nature of the company’s business. II. Strategic Communication Plan 2. 1 Components of Communication Plan In recent years, I witness continuous spawning of new enterprises.
The matured information technology that creates new way of doing business such as dotcom companies, rapid economy growth of a country, and merely people hate the way their boss leads the business could be the underlying reasons for building their own firms and becoming rich entrepreneurs of their dreams. In addition to a comprehensive marketing plan, to reach optimum results, any entrepreneurs should take into consideration a fundamental procedure of successful communication plan that is developing and implementing a communication plan. This is imperative since customers need to be informed about what a company offers them.
Basically, a communication plan provides complete tools for a company to conduct actions that will support efforts necessary to implement the company communication strategy. In addition, the communication plan also helps the company to reach and understand the target audiences while finding the best approaches to engage them into endless business deals. In this paper, I take into account six elements of marketing plan; they are market context analysis/market situation, objectives, strategic options and recommendations, communications activities, budgets and time scheme, and measures for evaluation.
By employing the six fundamentals of communication plan, below I provide the communication plan for Burt’s Bees that conduct business in consumer goods sector and in personal products industry. 2. 1. 1 Company’s Background 2. 1. 1. 1 Market Situation The “market situation” section describes the current state of the marketplace. It usually composes of description products/services or product/service lines, dollar value of your markets, geographic area, competitors etc. In 1984, Burt’s Bees was founded to be a company that manufactures environmentally-friendly products.
Roxanne Quimby and a beekeeper named Burt Shavitz are two people behind the birth of Burt’s Bees Inc. The company’s first line products include candles and lip balm, which are made from beeswax and other natural ingredients (“Burt’s Bees, Inc. Company Profile,” 2005). The objective of the company is quite simple “Practicing what we preach. ” Concerning the philosophy, I recall what Koran, Moslem’ Holy Qur’an, says about the benefit of honey, which is also created by bees. Since the company aims at manufacturing products from natural ingredients, the company decides to put the idea of earth-friendly on the company’s packaging.
Natural also underlies the company business philosophy, saying that sustainable business practices are keys to successful business since it promotes best practices. The company says that this philosophy is reflected in its ingredients and packaging designs that carefully take pay attention to environmental preservation including all living things on the planet Earth. Concerning the human resource, the company regards it as vital elements in the company’s success since the diversity in human resources has provide the company with high-quality products made form natural ingredients.
The company’s philosophy of being environmentally-friendly is also reflected in the way company select employees in which it only employs those who have great concern on environment preservation (“About the Company,” 2005). Under such circumstances, I see that Burt’s Bees have strongly stay on its believe to be the company that pay attention to natural preservation by manufacturing products that made only from natural ingredients, especially beeswax. 2. 1. 1. 2 Industry Leadership In terms of industry leadership I se that Burt’s Bees is still a small player in personal product sector.
In 2003, the company recorded outstanding revenue of $50 million. Although this number was considerably huge for the 20-year old company, I see that the revenue achievement of Burt’s Bees was not noteworthy if I compare to the company’s three main competitors; they are Nature’s Sunshine Products Inc, Procter & Gamble, and Wyeth. Nature’s Sunshine Products, for example, had recorded remarkable revenue accounting for $331 million in 2003 alone. The company that is currently one of the U. S. largest manufacturers and marketers of health care products.
The lines of products of Nature’s Sunshine are more than 700 products. They compose of herbal supplements, which are available in capsule, tablet, and liquid form. In addition, the company also markets various kinds of vitamins, personal health care products, and many others (“Nature’s Sunshine Products, Inc. Company Profile,” 2005). In addition, the major competitor of Burt’s Bees might be the famous The Procter & Gamble Company (P&G). Yahoo! considers P&G as a brand behemoth. This is because P&G becomes the world’s #1 manufacturer of household products with record billions of revenues.
P&G brand has also billions of dollars in value, behind Coca Cola as the most valuable brand in the world. In 2005, P&G revenue is $56. 74 billions with annual revenue growth of 10. 40% (“The Procter & Gamble Company Profile,” 2005). The third competitor is Wyeth. This is a well-known company that has specialization in two major lines of businesses: pharmaceuticals segment that produces vaccines and anti-infective; and consumer healthcare products, which produce Advil, Centrum, Robitussin, and Chap Stick (“Wyeth Company Profile,” 2005). Concerning the financial information, the company recorded revenue accounting for $17.
358 billions in 2004 with revenue growth of 9. 50%. The company has strong footprints worldwide, just like P7G, with more than 51,000 employees (“Wyeth Company Profile,” 2005). By looking at the above information of Burt’s Bees major competitors, I see that the one thing the Burt’s Bees must do is to increase the company’s brand equity in the customers’ minds. This important since according to Kotler (2000) successful companies rely on building customer’s clubs, engage in creative public relations, and focus on efforts to produce high quality products and win-over customer’s long term loyalty.
Those companies have proven that marketing is an ever-developing science, and it has a very important role on deciding the faith of a company. In some cases, I often experience that my strong believe to quality and superior taste of McDonald’s and P&G products, have driven me to walking around at malls in order to find the nearest McDonald’s outlets or a supermarket that sells P7G products. There might be no logical explanation behind my acts since it goes just the way it is.
I just feel that I need to find McDonald’s or else I would get hungry even I meet some restaurants during my searching or in case of personal product, I must find P&G’s toothpastes or else my teeth will get damaged. This refers to the condition where brand is more than just a brand. It could be new Gods for enthusiasts or fans of particular products or services. For them, including me, if I they cannot find their “Gods”, they would die. In marketing terms, these brands have successfully created their own cult with extreme believers.
According to marketing theory, consumer would prefer well known brand to unknown ones (‘Developing’, 2003). In marketing, this issue is underlined as very important. Even so, we are not to over-emphasize the matter and create lack of confidence to our new products/brands. Instead, we should take lessons from the fact that the statement indicates a direct connection between sales volume and product’s or brand’s “image”. We must also realize that a product’s or a brand’s image is the thing driving people to buy a product or a brand over another.
In a more intense sense, it even drives people to pay more for a product that they already have ‘faith’ in. 2. 1. 2 Objective/Scope of Communication Plan Concerning the situation where Burt’s Bees do not have strong position in personal product industry, I suggest several marketing objectives or scope of marketing plan that Burt’s Bees should bear in mind in order to improve their position in the market. Theoretically, marketing objectives discuss points to be achieved over the course of the plan.
Therefore, marketing objectives are measurable such as objectives to increase market share from 25 percent to 28 percent in two quarters. Concerning the situation, there are about three main objectives of Burt’s Bees communication plan: ? Increase revenue from $50 million in 2003 to $120 million in 2005 ? Reach target audiences where competitors have not offered natural personal care products ? Improve customer satisfaction through product education such as free seminar on the benefits of beeswax on human body etc. 2.
1. 3 Strategic options and recommendations 2. 1. 3. 1 Relationship Marketing Relationship marketing is a concept in marketing that suggests a company to build longer term relationships with customers. The reason is that by conducting long-term relationship, customers will likely to do transaction more often (Wikipedia, 2005). In case of Burt’s Bees case, I suggest that the company should immediately provide customer loyalty program with obvious benefits such as special price discount or free extra Burt’s Bees products.
For example, if a customer buy three Burt’s Bees Doctor Burt’s China Mint Toothpaste (3. 2 oz) for $6. 49 each, the customer will receive the fourth toothpaste at no extra costs. 2. 1. 3. 2 Knowing the Burt’s Bees Marketing Mix Having an effective marketing strategy is more than a logo, advertising and pretty brochures. An effective marketing strategy can only be created when we completely realize the needs and desires of the customers and/or target market and systematically examine our own aims, potency and weaknesses (“Marketing Basics: 4Ps”)
Basically, it is the heart of the marketing plan. The marketing strategy or marketing mix (4Ps) section should include information about: ? Product A product can be a physical item, a service, or an idea. Product decisions include aspects such as function, appearance, packaging, service, warranty, etc. The product is the physical product or service offered to the consumer. Currently, Burt’s Bees have more than 150 personal care products ranging from lip balm, soaps, bath oils, soaps, oral care, cosmetics and many others (“About the Company,” 2005).
Interestingly, natural philosophy is not only represented in the form of ingredients but also on packaging. This is because Burt’s Bees believe that sustainable business practices are always the best practices. It means that if Burt’s Bees sell products consist of environmental ingredients, other aspects of the products include packaging must reflect that philosophy. The company says that its packaging designs reflect a careful consideration of the impact of the packaging on environment and all living things on Earth (“About the Company,” 2005). ? Price
It is about what will charge customers for products and services. Pricing decisions should take into account profit margins and the probable pricing response of competitors. Pricing includes not only the list price, but also discounts, financing, and other options such as leasing. According to Consumer Guide Products (http://consumerguide. bizrate. com), I see that there is different pricing strategy between Burt’s Bees products and its number one competitor in dental care, Colgate. For example, on November 15, 2005, I visit http://consumerguide. bizrate. com and find following information: