It always is difficult to launch a product in other country. Different countries have different demographics, geography, psychographics, different behavioral patterns and attitudes. It becomes a challenge to get an insight on all these aspects for successful launch. But the success of the launch depends on two main things; the nature of the product and the effectiveness of the marketing strategy used. The launching product being bottled water seems an effective product as water being a commodity and the basic need of life is unavoidable.
As a consultant I would be proposing a marketing strategy covering all the marketing aspects of launching a US brand of bottled water in UK. The report is mainly divided into two parts. The first part covers the Market of UK and the second part comprises of descriptions regarding the marketing mix and how it can be effectively be implemented.
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The initial step of formulating a marketing plan requires an in depth knowledge regarding the market. Market can be defined as the prospective consumers or institutes that might be interested in the purchase of the product.
So the company first needs to identify the group of consumers and organizations in the country. The overall survey would be required to analyze the entire market. After the results of the survey the main steps of the marketing strategy would start. Initial part of the marketing strategy would cover three main categories known as STP i. e. Segmentation, Targeting and Positioning. These three steps are in a chronological order while actually implementing the marketing strategy in the real world.
1. 1 Segmentation
Segmentation can be defined as the process of identifying different parts of the entire market keeping in mind that each segment has its identity of characteristics and on the basis of these common characteristics can be targeted for a product. Segmentation would result in the classification of market into subsets of buyers who share similar needs, buying behavior and other characteristics. Bottled water is generally consumed by people who want to lead a healthier lifestyle since it has a competitive edge over tap water with meager contamination.
The entire market would comprise of people having a need of water but specifically a segment would be there for bottled water, a fixed price range, falling in age bracket, income, gender, social class, education, etc. To capture the maximum market share and respect of the product in the minds of consumer, following factors will be used to develop different segments of consumers:
- Geographic Segmentation: The geographic segmentation deals with the area of the segment existence. The product would be launched in the market of UK.
- The market would be divided into different regions and areas so that it’s easy to work efficiently on supply chain management.
- Demographic Segmentation: Since water is a basic need, there will be no age, sex, race, family size, or any other kind of limitation on the use of product. Anyone can use the product from infants to adults to old age people. However, income can be considerable for the people who consume bottled water on daily basis.
- Psychographic: This segment is formed after dividing the market on the basis of lifestyle, social class and personality.
People who favor healthy lifestyle want product containing useful ingredients. Professional prefer to have bottled waters while they are at meeting, quality and price sensitive people want best products at the economical prices. • Behavioral: Quality is the primary benefit; people prefer quality and pureness of water. The product will be free of any chemicals so as to convey this benefit and to differentiate it from tap water and other brands. Secondly, economy and availability are also important benefits sought by consumers. Therefore, simple formula will be used for price: cost + profit to provide best product at the best price.
The price range for the product would be $50 to $250 for sizes of . 5ltr. - 19ltr. Apart from this, all types of people can use the product, there is no difference related to attitude, occasions, or user rates.
1. 2 Targeting
Targeting is the second step of STP (Segment, Target, and Position) process. After the market has been divided into different segments, the marketer can select the segments to target and utilize the resources on that targeted segment to design the product. In this case, since the water is something that everyone can use, there is no specific target market.
However, taking the hale and hearty living style factor in mind, the target market will be Males and Females falling under the age bracket of 20-40 years, reasonably well off and educationally aware knowing the importance of staying in good physical shape with bottled water’s role in it. On the basis of different behavioral variables and lifestyles of people, product will be introduced in four different sizes (0. 5 – 19ltr. ) targeting different types of people. The target market consist of students of university and colleges who desire to carry small size (0. 5ltr.
) bottled water so that they can drink conveniently as and when the need arises, any kind of organizational or social kind of meetings, where medium size (1. 5ltr. ) bottles are used to be at an ease of drinking the water while discussions, the quality conscious people who use large size bottles (12ltr. ) and drinking cans (19ltr. ) of water at their homes and offices for drinking pure and safe water, and the people who drink tap water due to sky rocketing prices of other branded bottled waters, though they are also in quest of safe and hygiene water but at economical prices.
1. 3 Positioning
Positioning is the third step in of STP process. After the targeted segment is selected, marketer is responsible to map out the plan of how to position the product in the minds of consumers before launching it. Since there are many well-known brands of bottled water already available in the UK market, the product needs to be positioned through communicating exceptional selling point and by hard line advertising. The product will be positioned as harmless and non-chemical pure bottled water that contain useful ingredients like calcium, vitamins and many other useful things which gives the human body more than the water.
Bottled water will be positioned in the minds of the potential consumers as a product that keeps them fit at an affordable price. Tagline will state “Now no more compromise on health. ” This will put the perception in the minds of people that they `re being offered good product for their healthy lifestyle. This will be positioned through ads showing the cleanness of water and the need of safe water for the body so as to magnetize tape water drinkers. Apart from this, banners, billboards, print media will also be used as channels for positioning the product.
All forms of BTL activities will also be conducted such as the free samples of 0. 5 ltr will be circulated for market testing and advertisement purposes, seminars will be conducted to project the image of pure water, retailers will be given an additional discount up to 4% for selling 50 bottles (0. 5ltr) in a month etc. For price sensitive people, ads will be formed to project the reasonable prices of the product so as to attract them. The relationship with the best retailers is also very important so as to ensure the availability of product.
2. Marketing Mix
The marketing mix would be covering the four Ps that include product, price, place and promotion. Though some chunk of the Ps has been discussed above, this will give some more additional suggestions.
2. 1 Product:
The product is basically bottled water, a consumer good in the drinking water category.
2. 2 Price:
Value based pricing strategies must be adopted, varying with different sizes and signifying the worth bottled water creates in lives of the consumers. Bottled water being more pure will certainly have a higher cost attached to it.
2. 3 Place:
Given that, a single consumer coming in the specified age group is cognizant that bottled water is useful for his/her body, we assume that he/she would not prefer going to fast food restaurants or lounges where unhealthy food is served. Instead he/she would go to sporting facilities offered in various fitness clubs, gym centers and medical institutions. Therefore, these are the preferred target spots for product availability.
2. 4 Promotion:
Since the prospective consumer is educationally aware of the essence of drinking healthy, he/she knows the frequency with which water must be consumed and its related benefits.
Keeping under view that the product is to be launched in U. K ,a pull marketing strategy must be used for its promotion with reasonable spend on campaign in the following ways:
2. 4. 1 Short Term Promotion
Doctors endorsing the fact that drinking bottled water can prevent the possibility of being infected by various diseases in TVCs, Radio, Hoardings, Online and Newspapers according to the advertising budget and target market usage of the relative media.
Using brochures/leaflets to promote the brand at workplace by initiating a Direct Mail Shots Service drive or sending along with daily newspapers
Placing Props of bottled water at various locations with a board next to it stating some “healthy water tip” • Branding walking or running tracks at various parks and sport clubs.
2. 4. 2 Long Term (after Launch)
Sponsoring Health Conferences. Giving presentation, organizing seminars and meetings, ATL and BTL activities for promoting the product should be conducted in rural areas as well to increase the awareness of the product in the mind of local area`s people.
Launching different innovative products which may include bottle watered with mellow flavors or coming up with innovative packaging and bottling which would strengthen the position of brand in the mind.
Introducing offers over the time period which offer discount rates to consumers such as on purchasing of a 2 19l bottles offer them a carton of 0. 5l bottles free. Apart from that set an effective sales team which covers all areas of homes, schools, colleges, organizations, hotels and all other places.
This staff should be equipped with effective sales knowledge which would ensure proper post sales activities such as maintenance, repair and timely coverage and supply.
Marketing strategies should be improved over time to increase sales and market share. Product quality should be enhanced over time. Price should be raised every year if competition permits. The total advertising budget will be raised every year by about 10% so as to continue the process of positioning the product.
Marketing research budget should be decreased by 50% every year after launching the product. Conclusion For a successful launch of product an effective marketing strategy is required. Launching of bottled water US brand in UK will first be covering segmentation. The demographic, geographic and psychographic segmentation shows that water is a basic need and people with healthy lifestyle, including all age brackets, but specifically 20-40 years would be perfect target market for it. Target would vary with different segment aspects and different SKUs of bottles.
Brand would be positioned as a health assuring brand that offers affordable range of bottled water ensuring health with tagline, “Now no more compromise on Health”. Then the strategy includes the marketing mix including all 4 Ps. Product is bottled water, a consumer good offered at value based pricing must be, varying with different sizes and signifying the worth bottled water creates in lives of the consumers. Places to cover can include sporting areas such as fitness clubs, gym centers and medical institutions.
Along with that short and long term promotional activities such as seminars, discount offers, free sampling, free services and others would strengthen the brand position in minds of customers.
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