1. Overview of the company
The Procter and Gamble Company is a brand that is known all over the world. The world’s top maker of domestic products holds the largest market share across the world and billion dollar brands. P&G divides its business activities into three global units: health and wellbeing, household care and beauty. Procter and Gamble is an American corporation based in Cincinnati, Ohio, which manufactures wide and popular range of products. More than three billion times a day, Procter and Gamble brands interact with the lives of people globally. This happens because the company offers superior quality branded products and value to enhance the lives of people. This results in profits, leadership sales, value creation and revenues, improving lives of shareholders, employees and communities in which Procter and Gamble prospers.
P&G manufactures and markets more than 300 branded products. Company operates in more than 80 countries, employs nearly 135,000 people, and possesses a wide consumer base in more than 135 countries. What started as small family run soap and candle business company now offers products and services of excellent quality and value to customers in 135 countries. P&G is a public limited company. The company lists its stocks on London, New York and Paris Stock exchanges. P&G is famous for spending million dollars for its research activities. Its continuous efforts in innovation and research provide a value and a wide range of products for consumers to select. P&G also pioneered its leadership in the field of market research, investigation of consumer needs and product appeal.
On January 27, 2005, P&G acquired the Gillette Company, which is engaged in the production of male grooming products, including blades, shaving preparations, razors, and also female grooming products. The company made several acquisitions over the past few years that show its powerful market performance. These acquisitions assisted in including several powerful brands in its portfolio. Bigger acquisitions such as Iams, Clairol, Tambrands and smaller acquisitions such as Moist Mates helped introducing some popular brands such as Fresh Mates and Crest Spinbrush, an electronic tooth brush. P&G presented net income of $13.4 on revenue of $79 billion. With $ 79 billion global sales in fiscal 2010 and 25 brands with $1.5 billion of sales each, Procter and Gamble divides its business into three GBUs (global business units) that produce and develop products under the control of corporate group, which handles the administration and operation of the company (Procter and Gamble 2010).
2. Explanation of the rationale for new product
Procter and Gamble plans to launch at least nine new products in the next five months. Some of them will be premium priced to fetch higher margins for the Cincinnati consumer products giant. The company claims to be on the precipice of one of the biggest trade and want to position itself by exploiting this. The company listed five new beauty products, which will appear in the market by January, 2013. Four of them are Olay products and include a restage of Olay’s regenerate line.
The company is currently concentrating on the global launch of Tide Platinum, which is the modification of its existing popular Tide detergent powder. Tide Platinum is a moderate priced detergent that not only cleans cloths, but also removes grease and stains, works well in hard water. The new product Tide Platinum will not affect the market share of its Tide detergent powder, but aims to capture a significant share of Aerial and Persil brands of the Unilever.
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3. Identification and justification of the target market
A target market includes the group of people that a business wants to aim its marketing efforts and selling. In several cases, the research determines which group of people will be most likely receiving benefits from the product offered. Determining the target market, application of the four P’s of marketing into business practices helps to capture significant market share, brand positioning and achieve a competitive edge over its competitors. The success behind the P&G is that the company strongly focuses on customer and commits to marketing with effective marketing strategies. P&G share a passion for satisfying and understanding customer needs and wants in well defined target market. To target a market, the process starts with segmentation (Johansson 2006).
Consumer segmentation is a process of categorizing people into groups possessing some set of similar characteristics that result in the ability to be targeted and studied. The most effective method is to segment consumers by demographic characteristics, such as income, marital status, or age. The aim is to classify homogenous groups with similar behaviour, which will help in customizing the offer and message for each segment. A new Tide Platinum target audience woman is not a mystery. Not astonishingly, the detergent brand always has images of women throughout sites in all advertisements’. Nonetheless, it may not want to fully ignore bachelor or male college student who owns his laundry and needs more information. The target marketing opportunity for a new Tide Platinum is to increase the global market via environmental awareness and marketing of eco-friendly products (Wheelen 2008).
This will assist consumers save money on energy bills and also save the environment. Since Tide Platinum is a new, modified product with a high market growth and initially low market share, it classifies as a question mark on the Boston Matrix. Marketing efforts will determine its success, and will have to do a lot with resources that will be used for the product production and promotion, but the company hopes that eventually it will become a leading product on the market. The target market segment includes women from 25 to 50 years that have a reasonable education and an income level of at least $30000. Procter and Gamble target consumers are considered to live in both urban and rural areas, and their living style involves their concern about saving money and the environment. Considering all these factors, a fitting value proposition for a new Tide Platinum is extremely suitable. By segmenting the market with its various detergent brands, P&G provides an attractive offering for customers in all significant preference groups. As a recent change, P&G intends to adopt all latest technique of IT in its target marketing strategy for popularizing a new Tide Platinum. The application of this technology assists in exploring future opportunities. For Tide Platinum, Procter and Gamble will use online marketing systems, television and magazines. P&G is already implementing the Q Interactive, which is an online marketing promotion. Through this technology, it communicates with the target market.
4. Identification and rationale for brand positioning
Brand Positioning in market management process
Philip Kotler explains in his book that brand positioning phase plays a crucial role in recognition of a brand. A powerful position for a brand in the customer mindset is always a tremendous achievement for the organization. P&G realizes this significance and positions its other brands to accomplish success. The company understands that lack of a brand position can equally or even more significantly result in the wasted marketing efforts, and may produce negative effects on its other brands. The products and firms can be overlooked by consumers, resulting in the doomed market share and leaving space for competitors. Moreover, recession and withdrawal of a product may occur. In the research, possessing an appropriate viewpoint regarding the position is the best tactic. In fact, positioning is established to be the current and potential consumers’ opinions and perspective regarding a product, organization or brand, compared to competitors (Kotler 2006).
In the process of product positioning, marketers try to convey all benefits and advantages that are appropriate for targeting the market. As positioning strategies render effects on success of the firm and long term financial survival, companies seek to find some appropriate positioning techniques that direct them in the selection of suitable strategies for company positioning. Following the review products advertisements, Arora (2006) suggested that companies are trying to establish a position for their brand or products in the mindset of consumers through advertisement adopting three positioning strategies: positioning based on surrogate value, positioning based on various products benefits and positioning based on product features. By incorporating all these positioning strategies, P&G maintains that Tide Platinum will render significant influence in the market and overshadow competitors’ brands. In fact, the surrogate value is the product value for potential consumers that P&G anticipates without determined nature of the value. This paper recommends P&G for Tide Platinum positioning typology with respect to consumers’ opinions and the instrument used in this model has six dimensions as follows:
1. Having value-added in compared to product price;
2. Priority among equal level products;
3. Attractiveness and reliability;
4. Brand and innovation;
5. Product social class;
6. Country of origin.
In this manner, this paper suggests that this delimitation of brand positioning is appropriate for a New Tide Platinum.
5. Marketing mix strategies
Today highly competitive organizations characterize the market and all these organizations are vying for customer’s loyalty. Companies face the challenge to establish their own competitive edge to survive and be successful. P&G carefully plans its marketing strategies and execute them to achieve the ultimate growth. However, P&G realizes that external factors are not the only elements that influence growth. Along with the expansion of products, customers change as well. They have become more knowledgeable and demanding than before. In turn, P&G management consistently shifts their focus on customers so as to remain successful in the market. This transition means that P&G should thoroughly reformulate their conventional business aims and objectives from being process focused to customer centered. Besides, using proactive customer commitment includes the consideration on infrastructure and culture (Kotler 2001).
Companies that focus on consumers’ active participation in organizational activities are likely to gain competitive advantage through enhanced operating efficiencies, greater sales volume, reduced marketing expenses, positive word of mouth publicity, and expanded customer loyalty. Instead of following after every possible source of revenue, organizations terminate useless assets, which do not add value for consumers’ satisfaction. The marketing strategy of P&G leans on a principle that if its customers become a better consumer that is more productive, participative, or knowledgeable, it will enhance the quality of product experience for the consumer and the organization. As in the case of every product, Tide Platinum presents tremendous potential in the world market and its effective marketing to attract prospective consumers will determine its success (Porter 1996).
P&G usually targets women aged from 20 to 60 years old for marketing its detergents. Over years, the company constantly aims its marketing strategies to suit women of these ages through various promotional campaigns. This is explained by the fact that when an issue of laundry comes, women who belong to this category hold the power to make decisions. To design such marketing strategy, P&G must consider some key aspects, such as competitor analysis, market condition, and expectations of the consumer.
Relative Significance of 4Ps
Price: It is the extremely powerful tool in marketing, which determines the inclination of a consumer towards a product. Even though, a product may possess all significant features of quality that consumer requires, it will not attract consumers to negotiate for a product if a price is exorbitantly high. The company’s goals and objectives establish the determination of price. These goals range from expanding the market share, extending the sales by changing the price invariably such as discounts and coupons or improving the demands in the target market. The utilization of price is chiefly to make the market less attractive for competitors by overshadowing them and being able to increase or restrict sales. These pricing policies of P&G have been effective for its other detergent brands and always attracted consumers towards their products.
Product Offering: Product offering, on the other hand, involves the offerings that are possible to manipulate. These include the attributes or features, such as warranties, images, after sales service, delivery, product installation and responsibility for the product throughout its life cycle. The usability of detergent powder expires as soon as laundry is over, but this does not suggest that P&G will not be liable after its use. The strict consumer protection laws protect interests of consumers, and in case of any negative effect on laundry consumer can sue company or withdraw from further use of a product. This will ultimately damage the product positioning and image of the company. P&G should extend message to its customers with the media support on how they rate a new product so that it can extract the opinion of consumers. In return, this will enable P&G to make improvement in their products that will benefit to the consumer as well as ultimately to the company (Walker 2002).
Promotion: P&G has always been spending extraordinarily large amounts on promotional activities for its all popular brands. From time to time, many famous cinematographic stars, athletes and other famous personalities have been brand endorsers for their products. The company emphasizes on these promotional practices because it believes that a consumer will perceive the image of endorser in its mind regarding the product, and this will ultimately turn into buying. In 2005, P&G expenditures on promotional campaigns amounted nearly $6.5 billion on global advertising, making it one of the biggest advertiser. P&G enjoys benefits of both the electronic and print media worldwide in its all promotional activities. The expansion of IT provides a tremendous opportunity to send the company’s message across the world, and certainly positive signs for availing many new advertisement opportunities. Moreover, personal selling, sales promotions in the form of souvenirs, point of purchase displays for product presentation to the target market, and public relations establish a link with the stakeholders. Further, promotional media channels such as Television and radio also includes a powerful influence punch line. The presentation of the competitors’ product also endorses a product and renders significant impact and awareness in the mindset of consumers (Schellhase 2000).
Distribution/Place: Decisions with respect to distribution/place are also significant in fulfilling the wants and needs of the target market. There are numerous factors to consider, such as the selection of location from where the product will reach the customers, and several distribution channels required to introduce the product in the target market. The key elements of distribution channel include the storage facilities, packaging, transportation, and the stakeholders of channels such as retailers, agents and households. The selection of channel pattern is always crucial to make it the most suitable for the needs of the target market. Thus, if the target audience is women from the working class, then selling directly through the internet or personal selling is the best choice. However, effective distribution system of detergent powders has always been the availability of a product in retail and wholesale stores and easily approachable by masses during all times (Lovelock 2001).
In the competitive world, a brand needs focusing on all aspects of its business, whether it is internal, external, and micro or macro. The analysis of the market situation should be on the basis of PESTEL before deciding marketing strategy. The business is affected by all these factors and so are the strategies for operating the business. This article observes that a product offering must emphasize its strengths and negate its weaknesses. The opportunities of a new Tide Platinum are similar but by effective segmentation, targeting, and position, Tide Platinum can establish its own category in the existing market of detergent powders. In summary, for promoting Tide Platinum the marketing strategy focuses on the elements of the marketing mix (4Ps), which includes pricing decisions by considering socio economic and demographic factors of its target market, product offering by a sound feedback mechanism and promotional activities to make Tide platinum successful in the market.