Marketing plan is written document which explain advertising and marketing process for the future. It involved statement of marketing condition, target market and positioning of the organization and provides the portrayal of their marketing mix to achieve objectives. This report will discuss role of marketing plan, potential barriers and recommendation for avoiding them. Mc Donald’s is food-chain Company which started their business in USA and become international organization in 1950 (Wise and Sirohi, 2005). It is having 35000 restaurants in 100 countries. Report will contact audits of macro-environment and identify the opportunities on the basis of analysis. It will also develop a marketing plan for stated objectives and application of marketing mix, ethical issues and their effect on marketing planning.
There are many macro-environmental factors that affect the marketing activities of McDonald’s. Following issues concerns hurdles in promotional functions:
Legal factor: Mc Donald’s has to follow the rules of corporate governance that force organization to operate their business with legal and lawful objects. Mc Donald’s is operating their business in many countries like USA, UK, Japan and Germany; they have their own rules and legal definition for business (Ivy, 2008). These factors affect the marketing activities of Mc Donald’s company.
Political factor: The policies of government affect the marketing process of McDonald’s. Organization made changes in their products as per the health standard of USA government in 2005. Their food generating heart problems in children by eating fast food of Mc Donald’s. Government took a serious note on that and Mc Donald’s faced decline in profits from 15.6% to 14.9% in 2005 as per the case study.
Economic factor: The financial system of country affects the sales and profit of Mc Donald’s. BSE crisis had the impact on the sales of organization; they made changes in their menu. Economy affects the price and marketing policies of company (Martin, 2009).
Social and cultural factor:Countries have different social culture, values and beliefs that affect the marketing plan of Mc Donald’s. Healthy eating approach influences the decision of organization. It forces company to make changes in their menu as they introduce vegetable meals to attract continental customers (Gilmore, 2010). Company reduces the uses of white meat and beef in their food according to culture.
Technological factor: In the current scenario online services has been affecting business of organization. Mc Donald’s has launched online buying services to generate sales and target new market. Modification and updating is required to maintain sales to sustain market position.
Ethical factor: To built trust organization follow ethical business rules that influence customers to buy McDonald’s food products and services(Pesonen and Antti, 2013). Organization is following marketing ethics to promote their food and other services. Their major advantage is that, company is improving brand image worldwide.
Demographic factor: In the market issues like age and income groups influence the marketing planning. Age group of 6 to 18 like the food of Mc Donald’s which help to develop marketing plan to attract them (Sutherland and Sylvester, 2000). Organization develops special planning to target middle-class income groups.
Micro-environmental factor affect the business of Mc Donald’s. In that following factor influence their marketing planning.
Customers: Company’s marketing strategy develops according to the target groups of customers. Mc Donald’s design their promotional activities as per the potential customer like children and adults. They make different marketing plan to attract both.
Employees: They play major role in the implication of marketing plan developed by the top management for improving sales and profits (Frank, 2011). Skilled and confidante staff members help organization to follow marketing plan as per the conditions and offer best services to customer.
Suppliers and distribution: For producing quality food products Mc Donald’s needs raw material and supplier. Quality of products changes the behavior of buyer and attracts them to experience their services. Their marketing plan includes and provides information about their standard products and services. Distribution channel of Mc Donald’s is working very effectively to offer their products as per the demand of customer (Harker, 2009). It will please customer by meeting their demand on time. That is really improving the business of company at both domestic and international market.
Competitor: The level of competition also impact on the business of Mc Donald’s. The appearance of KFC, subway, Starbucks and Costa coffee placed more pressure on McDonald’s to defend their market. Combined with this organization has increased focus on their products and implements changes and create awareness of healthy eating.
Marketing plan is important to achieve stated objectives and define the way to success. It provides information to potential customers and creates awareness about products and services. In the Mc Donald’s marketing planning significant role is to expand their business and help company to define segments and ensure that people are getting knowledge about their products and place (Aljukhadar and Senecal, 2011). Organization started marketing in 1996 with golden arches logo to get global reorganization for their food products. After the crisis company has repositioned their products to increase brand name.
Marketing plan helps them to achieve company’s objective in effective and efficient manner. Marketing plan integrates business goals, financial operations and resources for increasing and repositioning their image in market. Organization requires marketing planning to analyzes market conditions and develop strategy and prepare them to overcome barriers. Marketing department of McDonald’s collects information from various sources to forecast future needs and design marketing plan to meet them (Chen and Lai, 2010). This plan plays vital role in defining these activities:
Provide guidance: To achieve written objectives marketing plan serve as a guide for McDonald’s to promote their food products and services. It helps organization to determine marketing mix to improve their sales.
Forecasting: It helps to make changes in current process to avoid barriers in the future business (Drejer,2000). It evaluates customer’s needs and interest for developing future product and services.
Budget: Marketing plan plays important role in collecting and distributing funds for promotion activities. It also help Mc Donald’s to set price for their products according to market situation and operation cost.
Process: Marketing plan customaries the process for achieving objectives of organization (Mason, 2007). It ensures the procedure for segmentation, positioning and targeting customers.
Barriers to marketing planning Organization faces problems in marketing their products and services.
Lack of knowledge:Mc Donald’s requires knowledge to market their products and services. Short of information and knowledge create difficulty to develop effective marketing plan.
Lack of skills: Formulation and development of marketing plan get affected without the skilled stakeholders. Lack of skills craft barriers in the marketing planning.
Confusion in strategy: Lack of knowledge and communication make confusion and conflicts which imposes barriers in the implementation of marketing plan in order to achieve objectives.
Failure in defining objectives: If organization fails in identifying and defining their goals for the future they will face the problems in planning their marketing strategy (Nicholas and et. al. 2003). For that company has to recognize their goals and needs develop marketing plan according to them.
Lack of in-depth analysis: Company requires performing in-depth analysis to make changes and develop effective marketing plan to accomplish their objectives. Lack of investigation of target market will create hurdle in developing market plan.
Organizational barriers: Mc Donald’s culture and environment affect the planning of promotional activities. CSR policies, values and beliefs’ of employees will affect the process and scheduling of marketing.
Funds: For the development and implementation of marketing plan company needs funds (Cooper,2000). This will be major obstacle for marketing planning that makes organization to suffer.
Isolation of marketing function from operations: Operations and marketing functions may be different in developing marketing plan. This will affect the process of implementing plan to obtain goals and make barriers for Mc Donald’s (Cravens. 2006).
Organization can use these recommendations to avoid barriers which affect their marketing planning to achieve objectives. Following steps help McDonald’s to overcome barriers:
Teamwork: It will provide ample support to company for avoiding barriers. Distribution of work will implement the marketing planning effectively and overcome the confusion at work place. Team work is always valuable for acquiring goals and defining process to get success.
Skill development training: Mc Donald’s has to plan skill development training session for their employees to defeat lack of skills to implement marketing plan properly (Chernev, 2006). Talented employees will improvise planning and produce desired results.
Focus on objectives: The top management of Mc Donald’s needs to define their objectives and have to be more focused to accomplish them. This kind of attitude will help organization to pass the hurdles and get success in their mission.
Effective communication: To avoid these barriers organization has to make clear and effective communication process which does not make confusion and conflicts. This will automatically overcome the potential barriers.
Accountability: If every employee of McDonald’s justified their jobs then it will help organization to prevail over the conditions which affects development and implementation of marketing plan and process (Layton,2011).
Monitoring: For the effective implication of marketing plan Mc Donald’s has to monitor activities of stakeholder and their dedication towards task to accomplish individual and organizational goals which ultimately overcome hurdles in marketing plan.
Feedbacks: This function will help organization to identify the areas which will create problems and impose barriers (Nason, 2011). Mc Donald’s can avoid these situations by asking for suggestion from their stakeholders.
This will include launch of new product Garlic Bread, SMART objective for the product, marketing strategy and application of marketing mix.
The SMART objectives of organization will be as follows:
For the new product organization needs strategy to market their new food product which is Garlic Bread (Sirgy and Lee, 2008). Following steps will help Mc Donald’s to promote their food product effectively and achieving objectives.
Clear positioning: For achieving SMART objectives Mc Donald’s needs to define positioning for the product. Organization can use that to create awareness and attract customers to buy this new food product. Company can provide information for this product like it is good for health and very economical (Berniak-Wozny,2010). It can be used as breakfast and starter.This process will support organization to achieve their first SMART objective.
Right time and place for launch: In order to promote their product Mc Donald’s has to clearly define time and place for perfect launch of Garlic Bread. To get the positive responses company can launch it on vacation time at the tourist places which will help Mc Donald’s to achieve objective of improving sales up to 16%.
Co-ordination and communication: For the effective marketing of product Mc Donald’s requires contribution of employees to accomplish goals and maintain standard services quality to please customers (Birgelen and Wetzels, 2005). In that process top management needs to make effective co-ordination and communication within the organization. This will definitely help Mc Donald’s to accomplish both the SMART objectives.
Effective use of marketing mix:Marketing mix will help the organization to target and influence customers. It will also define the price and place for the Garlic Bread and determine the marketing plan for achieving goals.
Marketing mix elements will help the organization to market their new food product and meet the organizational propose. Following marketing mix will help Mc Donald’s to support new product.
Price: This is the most important aspect of marketing and getting the attention of customer (Dasgupta, 2014). Mc Donald’s is positioning their new product as economic combo food for all. So the price will be very cost-effective which help organization to improve customer volume.
Place: Company will distribute this product all the restaurants to maximize sale and profit. They can choose the place by conducting research where company has the max footfall of customers.
Product: Customer wants value for their money and the product of Mc Donald’s is healthy and contains best quality ingredients (McDonald and Wilson, 2011). Company can promote it as healthy and tasty for customers.
Promotion: In order to promote their new product Mc Donald’s can use this tag line ‘Healthy and testy’. This will attract targeted customers and help company to accomplish objectives.
People: For the new food product company requires skilled chef to develop quality and healthy Garlic Bread. The skilled chef will help organization to maintain good taste as they promoting their product ‘Healthy and Tasty’.
Process: The food making process must be hygienic and transparent. It will influence the customer to buy McDonald’s food product (Raghavan, 2011). The delivery process of product also affects the decision of buyer. So the food making and deliver process must be considerable.
Physical evidence: Company needs to focuses on clean and germ-free interiors of its outlets and at the same time interiors also be very attractive and creative. This will improve the customer footfall and help Mc Donald’s to achieve goals. Company maintains proper decorum at its joints.
Organization follows the ethical terms and rules to sustain the market position and develop ethical brand image among the customers. These factors affect the marketing activities of Mc Donald’s such as advertising policies, appeal in promotion, respect of individual and groups (McDonald’s Marketing Mix, 2009). These things need to be very ethical and acceptable to all the stakeholders.
Promotional activates must respect the privacy of individual and community which will be not specified. The advertising activity has to content right information and does not encourage for violence. It will not use the negative points for the competitor companies and attacks on the values of audience. These issues affect and force Mc Donald’s to follow marketing ethics to promote their new food product.
Impact of ethics on consumers behavior.The ethical process and marketing activity attract the customer to buy the products of organization which follow the ethics in their marketing.
Ethical marketing activities create good and trusted brand image of Mc Donald’s, which influence the consumer’s behavior and its buying process. The marketing technique develops and implemented to attract customer, if it content wrong information and misguide the audience will put bad impact on the sales of organization (Rodrigo, 2012). Consumer behavior is generally based on the advertising activities of company, if it is ethical and effective will persuade them to buy product and services of Mc Donald’s. This approach will allow Mc Donald’s to build loyal and consumer base that provide a steady income and contribute in achieving their objectives.The development of ethical marketing plan to be proposed by top administration of McDonald’s to establish moral and ethical standard can be applied to business. McDonald’s have to make sure this entire standard integrates into their day to day operations. So the ethical and valuable marketing have positive impact on the consumer behavior and help organization to improve sales and customer volume.
Organization can follow the business ethics and provide training to their internal stakeholder in order to implement ethical process to promote their products and treat customer.Advertising and marketing of new develop products should focus on the content of product and its benefits. Ethical and healthy advertisement is publicized by the McDonald’s to influence the target customers (Nicholas and et. al. 2003). The benefits of the product have been produce for the consumer by effective marketing. Marketing research and activities must respect the values and beliefs of society. Mc Donald’s has to make sure that the employees and manger should follow and implement ethical approach in marketing and product delivery. Marketing activity has to offer benefits to society and it may not create doubt on ethical ground. An ethical product or services attract consumer and grow image of company.
From the report it is consider that Mc Donald’s operating their business very effectively and providing better services to their customers. Company’s macro and micro analysis suggest they are following business rules and regulation to improve their business and for the betterment of society. They are facing challenges from competitors and trying to defeat them by introducing new product and services. Company have some berries in marketing activities, report offers recommendation to overcome these potential issues.Report sated the SMART objective for new product which is Garlic Bread and develops a marketing plan to promote new food product. It describes the marketing mix application to market their product effectively and ethically. Ethical marketing activities will help Mc Donald’s to influence customer’s behavior and achieve their objectives.
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