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Rackspace’s recent post of a very solid cloud computing driven 3Q 2012 due to its rapid adoption of the technology as well as managing hosting. This led corporations to note that outsourcing the data center needs of Rackspace saves money and allows resources for vital engineering for growth initiatives. It experienced a revenue growth by 27% and growing by 20% annually.Despite its competition with the king of low-cost Amazon. They are popular for their better customer service (Mosaic, I 2012). For the Diamond Trading Company its marketing process considers the following elements for this process:
- Marketing environment monitoring performed continuously,
- Developing an annual marketing communications plan is performed, annually.
- Market Segmentation. This is a marketing strategy of dividing the targeted market to form specific regions of consumers or buyers with characteristic needs or requiring different products.
- Market Targeting. An organization needs to know its customers on the basis of their living environment, age, lifestyle and gender in order to make it easy to identify the marketing activities to focus on them. This will save time, expenses and effort and avoid wasting it on those people who may never become customer probably due to age, socio-economic background or culture.
- Positioning. It also refers to branding of the product or business. Every organization’s marketing campaigns needs to be driven by a single and distinctive position which will promote recognition of customer so as to gain their loyalty over time (Marketing Diamond Jewellery n.d.).
Benefits a marketing orientation for Rackspace Hosting is partly its ability to a wide range of managed network and Webhosting services for a great number of businesses. It intends to expand in order to become a clod hosting firm and this will allow customers to utilize hence get more satisfaction from pooled server resources on the basis of on-demand. It also provides a combination of dedicated and cloud computing through its hybrid hosting Working at. Marketing orientation carried out once a month which costs the company $ 25 per hire translating to $1,000 total cost for orientation (Rackspace n.d).
2. Using the McDonald’s Restaurants Ltd as the case study, the macro environmental factors constitute the major external factors that are uncontrollable which influence the decision making of an organization. They affect segmentation depending on the factor. For instance, technological environment brings about innovation, increasing use of computers and all its products and services resulting from the skills and expertise of man. This calls for a corresponding change in the operations of an organization to enable it to make more and have better products for sale. Economic environment is affected by inflation, business cycle, employment provision, productivity and profitability and interest rates. It directly influences compelling customers to demand for goods. Also social-cultural environment of the company’s customers determines the standards of conduct, products and services for the society hence indirectly affects the management through the consumers lifestyles such as regulated by cost and time which affect commuting, television watching and working mothers. This has resulted into a culture of customized goods. Other factors ar physical/demographic, political/governmental and international environment.
The company’s micro environmental factors constitute the internal forces such as introduction of substitute products or services by rivals, suppliers’ innovations, customers and channels as well as newly developed products and services. This environment is weighed using mission, objectives and management variables. It is influenced by the management decisions through the employed strategy to gain, protect or increase an organization’s market share. For instance, the marketing campaign carried out by T.G.I. Friday's which includes TV spot, social media engagement, radio ads and mobile app integration provides the brand of Friday’s which spear heads the mission of the organization hence meeting it objective thus positioning well in the market.
In McDonald's SWOT analysis, the company strengths lies on its strong brand name, reputation, image, large market share, specialized training for managers, its new products in the market, its recent technological innovations and good marketing strategies. Its weaknesses are poor image of its unhealthy food, facing fierce competition leading to lose of customers, due to its use of beef oil and trans-fat in food processing, a lot problems related to health have arisen, involvement in many lawsuit, high employee turnover, environmental issue actions and disgruntled Franchisees. There are opportunities that can enable the business to expand if the organization utilizes them such as the current high growing rate of fast food industry, incorporation of newly research findings on conservation in marketing strategies, globalization, diverse customer needs and tastes. Lastly, the McDonald’s Restaurants Ltd faces some serious threats that can contribute to lose of market share hence making loses. They include stronger competitors such as Yum, Wendy and Burger King, crises inpublic health, economic regression and serious environmental issues (Candyleo13 n.d).
Following the SWOT analysis identify a product/service that can be marketed to two different segments
Based on the above SWOT analysis, its burgers can be marketed in two different segments. The possible marketing strategy include customers who would like to put on weight especially those engaged in strenuous activities such as splinters, wrestlers, weight lifters and soldiers in war. This is because of their high level of beef oils and fat. The burger can also be used in hospitals for patients who have disorders or diseases associated with low fat content. On McDonald’s positioning, reduction of the cost of the burger can make the company a family friend. Also, minimizing the time taken to deliver the product, use of computers for quicker service delivery, wider and better marketing strategies and improving the safety of the burger to reduce health problems.
The burgers produced by McDonald’s Restaurant Ltd. are made of 100 % beef and without any preservatives or flavours. The burgers sold by this company originate from a company known as Esca Foood Solutions in German which argues that thorough standards were maintained at the abattoirs as well as production plants. The production process is claimed to have involved 16,000 of UK’s independent farmers together in an effort to ensure high standards are maintained. Prices not standard in McDonald’s Restaurants but vary because the franchisees who own these restaurants set the pprices for their products but ensure they provide customers what is valuable for their money. This is maintaining the company’s aim of giving quality products to customers.
The products need to be developed with reduced amount of beef
How the product is going to be developed to sustain competitive advantage
The most efficient market plan will entail changing the taste of the consumer and menu expansion through addition of wraps, salads, fruit and smoothies. The company needs to improve its vision of guaranteeing quality and hygienic products (Value Chain and Competitive Advantage n.d).To sustain the competitive advantage, the distribution channel chosen will need to reduce the order cycle time required to deliver orders, be dependable through improving on reliability and consistency, better communication between the company and customers for easy solving their problems and improve convenience so as to easily provide customers with special needs. Prices are to be set to reflect value, increase profitability in order to maintain the brand name. A strategic pricing tool efficient in striking a balance between the prices and products needs to be established.
For customers involved in strenuous exercises, I would propose the product to be more important consideration in marketing since their greatest need is a product that would provide the energy they need. Then, a good promotion/positioning that can create awareness of the product and create interest in it are of importance too. For place, the company is creating branches to draw closer to customers in various gyms and recreation centers. Finally, the price has to be determined by reinforcing good value for a set price of a brand image. For patient market segment, product again becomes the most important characteristic in the marketing mix followed by price since the brand will be associated with the price. Promotion would be in the third place since the health service providers need to be aware of this products then the place would guide the customers can easily access the products.
A strong promotional strategy has been the reason for the success of many companies especially McDonald’s Restaurant. It is aimed at persuading potential customers to be aware of the new product a company may be offering that may find to be fun. A lot of money is normally used for promotion purposes. The key processes involved in promotion are branding, advertising, packaging, public relations, and sponsorship and special promotions. Other additional elements in the marketing mix for McDonald’s are the process which reflects a completely transparent process of manufacturing food, physical evidence which entails giving the joints proper decorum and focusing on ensuring that the interiors are hygienic and clean. These elements form the basis on the marketing strategy to be employed in a specific segment.
To market its products in the global market, McDonald’s needs to develop marketing strategies with an assumption that the world comprises of a unitary entity so that the products will be marketed the same manner in all parts. Products, prices, promotional campaigns and distribution channels are standardized and the company needs to be engaged fully to international marketing. To market products domestically, marketing strategies are customized according to cultural and national differences. However, the products will need to be standardized (Claudio, 2001).
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