Strategic marketing means that it is a way through which company effectively differentiates itself from its rivals by focusing on its strengths in order to offer better value to consumers. In this report, organization chosen is TESCO and discussion has been carried about its products and services (Barton, 2005). Further, analysis has been done on organization’s current approach to customer relationship management and its potential benefits and limitations.
Tesco is a multinational grocery and general merchandise retailer headquartered in Chestnut, Hertfordshire, UK. In terms of revenues and profits, after Wal-Mart, it is the second largest retailer in the world. It has stores in 12 countries across Asia, Europe and North America and it is the market leader in grocery retailing in the UK (Coskun, 2000). Cited organization has been increasingly diversifying itself geographically and into various fields such as retailing of books, clothing, electronics, furniture, financial services and many more. The business is listed on London Stock Exchange and it has market capitalization of around 20.5 billion pounds. Tesco operates on a “good, better and best” policy for its products, involving different product categories like food, beverage and others.
It sells fresh and branded products in UK supermarkets. The corporation not only provides superior product quality but also delivers best after sales service in order to satisfy customer needs and wants. Organization advertises its products through print and television media. Its main slogan while advertising any product or service is “Every little helps”. Company has been widely facing criticism for its expansion plans (Blythe and et. al., 2010). Despite of recession, Tesco made a record profit in the year 2010 of 3.4 billion pounds. Company introduced “One on Front” service in order to decrease the waiting time at the check-out counters.
Cited organization maintains a good relation with its customer in order to satisfy them by providing quality products and services. Tesco is the first retailing company in the UK to initiate customer relationship management (CRM) in business (Cravens, 2005). CRM is the strategy which enhances the relations of organization with their customers. It also involves understanding needs and preferences of customers in order to boost the sales of company. Business uses good relationship marketing with its customers to retain them for long period.
Business adopts different approaches in order to strengthen its relationship with customers such as introducing club card schemes in order to say thank you to the privileged customers. Effective practices of CRM carried by Tesco assist them in expanding the business throughout world and more than 8 million customers are regularly contacted through CRM tools. It gives a great advantage to loyal customers as they receive yearly edition of company’s magazines which has advertisements of its varied products or services (Doole and Lowe, 2001). Implementing customer relationship management, benefits the business by means of increasing the sales and also identifying the needs of customers. Club card is a great source of information about the customers and therefore, Tesco has become the customer champion in the retail market.
Tesco’s move into customer relationship management began in early 1990’s when the firm started working with Dunnhumby, a marketing service firm. Company launched the club card scheme which rewards customers by providing them one loyalty point for every one pound spent with the company (Percy, 2002). It gives advantage to customers that all the collected points can be redeemed later and used for many other services like leisure attractions, holiday packages and restaurant facilities. The retail giant also uses other marketing modes like vouchers, discount coupons and many more.
Organization achieves growth objectives through the launch of club cards and ensures that customer base and frequency increases tremendously. Tesco also increases its productivity by collecting feedback from customers and accordingly fulfilling their preferences by providing them the required quality products. Brand and customer relationship management influences the market profit and financial performance of firm. It provides better price and value to retain customers in business and provides own-label branded products so that they do not move out of Tesco (Flint, 2004). Therefore, it can be concluded that company adopts different measures like club cards, discounts and vouchers in order to attract and make good relationship with customers. It also operates in a unique manner and understands the need of customers and fulfills it accordingly.
There are different key stakeholders of Tesco and their potential importance to business is as follows-
Suppliers- It is important for Tesco to build a strong relationship with their key suppliers because they supply quality raw material on timely basis to business (Proctor, 2014). Moreover, if business finds any problem with suppliers it can be solved without straining the relations. If suppliers pay less attention and supply low quality products then it will eventually hamper customer satisfaction. Therefore, it is essential for company to make strong bond with suppliers.
Customers- These are the most important part of any organization. Customers are those external resources of company through which it earns profit and increases its business. Tesco sells quality products to customers and they make repeat purchases and hence it provides revenues to business. Therefore, fulfilling needs of customers is necessary to satisfy them and gain their loyalty (Frankwick and Ward, 2010). Customers are attracted towards the innovative product line of company and therefore they are important because they increase the sales and overall profitability of Tesco. Importance of good customers is considerable because happy customers spread good word of mouth and vice versa. Clients are crucial because they provide relevant feedback on company’s performance and which helps the organization take corrective actions where required.
Employees- Satisfaction of employees is important for the success of the business. Organization needs to satisfy their employees by establishing proper reward management system because they are valuable assets of the business. If employees are satisfied with the company then they would give superior quality performance by introducing creative and innovative product line (Gilbert, 2000). Hence, employee satisfaction is very important for business to bring positive change in business. Workforce is important for Tesco because they are in direct contact with the end consumers and can either make or break firm’s reputation.
Shareholders/ Investors/Banks- Shareholders play an important role in financing, governing and operating the business. They are the owners of company and therefore they should pay proper attention on overall operations of business. Investors and banks are important because they provide funds to Tesco at the time of debt in order to recover from difficult situation (Hackley, 2000). Shareholders have both direct and indirect role in operations of business. At the time of financial crisis, investors and banks help the business by bailing them out of the financial crunch so that business activities can be carried out in an uninterrupted manner.
Society- Importance of society towards business is there because it receives its resources i.e. men, money, material etc. from society and through using that, it provides products and services to society.
Hence, society provides support to company while they deliver quality products and services to them (Lee and Staelin, 2005). The organization owes a lot to society and therefore must undertake its corporate social responsibility properly.
Media- It plays an important role in promoting the products or services of company by using different means like online and print media. It has its own importance and power and can tarnish the reputation of the company in a second (O'Driscoll and Gilmore, 2009). Media creates awareness about the products among potential customers and increases the demand of same. Therefore, importance of media is very much while introducing new innovative product in market and ultimately Tesco makes profit out of it.
Government- Importance of government is there because it provides licensing agreement to business (Lu and et. al., 2000). UK government assists Tesco in providing permission to open other franchises of business in different emerging countries like Asia and expanding the business.
Tesco should plan different strategic programs in order to develop good relationship with stakeholders-
Suppliers- Business should develop a strong relationship with its suppliers by conducting regular meetings and building two-way communication with them (Tasso, 2011). This helps in better understanding the needs of suppliers and setting particular standardized processes so that they can follow that. Tesco should not make unrealistic demand for products and services because it will hinder the performance of suppliers and they will get frustrated. In order to establish good relationship, business should clear all their accounts on time and if not possible then make the supplier know about it in advance.
Customers- In order to make good relationship with customers and satisfying them, business can conduct proper research on the preference of customers and then provide them with the similar product or service (Leisen, Lilly and Winsor, 2010). Clients are the lifeblood of business and overall success of business depends on them. Tesco should effectively train its customer representatives so that they can understand the problem faced by customer related to product and modify it properly to get proper results. Business should send a "thank you" mail after every purchase done by customers as this leaves a positive impression of cited organization. Business should check that they should not disclose any personal information provided by customers and hinder their trust. It leads to negative impression of company in the minds of customers. Listening to customers and responding properly makes a good relationship with customers (Proctor, 2014). They should call their loyal customers to their stores and conduct different programs like discount on particular products etc so that they can be obliged and feel special.
Employees- Tesco should make good relationship with their employees by providing them proper training and development programs. This will make them happy and more productive and help the business in growing. Line managers should be very helpful and understand their employees effectively in order to measure their performance and evaluate it properly (Gilbert, 2000). This motivates employees and assists them to follow proper guidelines given to them so that they can be acknowledged and rated accordingly. Proper mentoring should be given to train and develop the performance of workers in order to make effective relations with customers.
Shareholders/Investors/Banks- Tesco should make good relationship with shareholders because if they will be satisfied with the performance of company then they will buy more shares of company and substantially grow the company (Barton, 2005). Also, building positive relationship with investors and banks will bring more money and help business in overcoming its debt and increase the financial stability in market. Positive relationship with shareholders means that they should be well known about the financial condition of company and no false misrepresentation should be made. Company should call them at the annual general meeting and shows the financial statement like profit and loss and balance sheet of company. This helps them to make clear judgment about further buying shares of company or not.
Society- Tesco should plan and implement different cultural programs for the society in order to make them satisfied like sponsoring different sports or art events held in city. Company also plans different promotional activity through campaigning and providing free samples to customers and attracting them towards business (Flint, 2004). Business also participates in various corporate social responsibility activities like plantation of trees and avoiding use of plastics. All such activities help business in building a strong relationship with society and bringing positive results in business.
Government- Business should make good relationship with government by following proper rules and regulations like tax laws and policies and implementing it in business to achieve results (Percy, 2002). Through this government provides easy licensing and helps in developing the business.
Media- Tesco develops positive relationship with media so that it makes good branding of companies product and increases the sales of company (Cravens, 2005). Also, if business launches any new and innovative product then media helps in pre-launching the product and making it popular.
From the above report it can be concluded that different approaches of retaining customers through maintaining proper relationship with customers. Customer relationship management helps in retaining the customers and making good relations with them which helps in expanding the operations of business. Also, recommendation has been made to make positive relationship with stakeholders.