Ans 1: The Micro Environmental Factors which will after their marketing plan are related to the following:
The supplier Environment – There should be a win – win relationship between the buyer and the supplier. Industrial disputes, availability of raw materials, increase in the prices of raw materials could be a problem in case of BJ. Thus the marketing department should look into the changes that are happening and also monitor them in the Management information system for a steady control.
The Distributive Environment – The various channels which comprise of the distributors, retailers, agents should work in tandem with the other as their co-ordination will fetch higher gains and independence for the company resulting in profits. Since changes take place slowly as seen in the case too, understanding the significance of change is becoming a complex task.
The Customer Environment – BJ Company should understand their consumer’s needs and segment and target the market. It’s also seen that women as customers are showing positive inclination towards the purchase of this bike.
The Competitive Environment – BJ has various competitors which should be tackled to show the differentiating aspect of every player in the industry. Various other outlets having motorbike business, the training schools which are already existing, the firms having clothing and other accessories space in their chains, car servicing facility available at the outlets also play as competitors (Kotler, 2005 & Lancaster, 2008).
The Macro Environmental Factors –
Political and Legal Factors – Irrespective of the kind of business, political and legal factors does affect the business in various ways. In BJ, the pressure that would mount on four wheeler segments in terms of being on the road or expensive parking, bike segment is at an advantage. Making everyplace green and free of environmental pollution hazard also should be legalized.
Economic Environment – Higher cost involved in the purchase of a car, high tax payment schemes, fuel prices increasing tremendously and the parking facilities affect the economic conditions and also provide the firm BJ an upgrade in the business of motorbikes. The money spent on the investments in the purchasing decision of newer products affect the choice and preferences the consumers make.
Social and cultural Environment – Society today because of congestion and parking problems, find the motorbikes to be the most convenient mode to carry on the road. Changing shifts in the personality, lifestyle and attitudes of the consumers make the women riders increase their chances of using it a fashion or sometimes as a basic need.
Technological Issues – The company has just started using a web portal but still it has to be streamlined to check the progress of every business activity that is been adopted. Having their own research and development allocation and department is a positive implication for marketers (Kotler, 2005 & Lancaster, 2008).
Opportunities – All the factors stated and highlighted above serve as the opportunities for the company BJ which they need to cash upon by strengthening the advantages and weakening the disadvantages. Making use of loyalty cards, having Biker Academy classes to train respondents, having a shopping experience would yield higher opportunities (Kotler, 2005 & Ramaswamy, et al, 2004).
Threats – The Competitive factors discussed above may pose to be the threats for the company. Having a marketing person looking after the company requirements imply more check will be taken care off. Also if online marketing is not carried out by the BJ Motorbikes, then the consumers may not be able to get the entire information (Kotler, 2005 & Ramaswamy, et al, 2004).
Geographic Segmentation à – BJ Motorbikes can either target the domestic market or global / international market, depending on which the marketers will have to study the culture of the consumers and satisfy the needs of the end users. They have plans of promoting their markets towards the foreign markets for women buyers who have an interest in the motorbike purchase decision (Kotler, 2005 & Ramaswamy, et al, 2004).
Demographic Segmentationà Age – Age is a major parameter which is very much relevant to this segment as right from the youngsters to the middle aged to the elderly customer base use bikes. With age the needs and wants of consumers keeps changing hence studying their behaviors at every stage is a huge task for marketers. à Life Stage – At every stage i.e. going through a divorce, involving in a second marriage, buying a home, taking care of their children and parents are the different concerns consumers have. If these concerns can be used to market their problems the product will be at an edge over competitors. à Gender – Women are also trying to enter this biker stage with the changes in their lifestyle and personality. àSocial class – The place we stay the kind of neighbors that exists, the environment and the social commitments and pressures we indulge in all of these create a demonstration effect which changes the buying pattern of the consumers. àIncome – This element also plays a big role in the buying pattern where in the consumers tend to make use of their disposable income in such a way that their requirements are fulfilled. Younger crowd will have more disposable income then the elderly people because of the investments they undertake. àMarital Status – this is a huge parameter which is accompanied with the size of the family which determines the requirement of the use of a motorbike (Kotler, 2005 & Ramaswamy, et al, 2004).
Psychographic Segmentation à Lifestyle – whether the segment is culture oriented or sports oriented or outdoor oriented or business oriented depending on which their variations in the purchase pattern will change which the marketers have to capture on. à Personality – every consumer will consume products based on the products symbolic value which adds on to their personality and which suits their standard of living. The Brands signify the symbolism at the time of sale which influences the consumer’s behavior and also is influenced by the moves and the shifts in the mind set of the users (Kotler, 2005 & Ramaswamy, et al, 2004).
Behavioral Segmentation à Benefits – Based on the benefits which the product offers the users, they will adopt that product or service by taking into condition the quality, speed, service, functionality, economy etc. àAttitude towards their product – another element which depict the consumers behavior are enthusiastic, positive, negative, being indifferent, friendly, dominating allow their individual decision making to shift from time to time. àReadiness stage – the pulse of the consumers at the time of purchase in terms of awareness, information known, interest shown, their desiring level, the intension to buy show the marketers a sign of information to market their products to the users (Kotler, 2005 & Ramaswamy, et al, 2004).
Profitable segments –
Female Women Buyers – They fall in the category of enthusiasts where the culture of today’s women is to empower and outshine in every respect and be in constant edge over the males. Thus with the kind of exposure and the type of friends they associate with, their lifestyle and personality changes and is been growing.
Single People or newly married with no kids – This group will tend to be profitable in the initial stages as this market is mainly focusing on the entertainment and fun during their early years of marriage.
Utility Riders– this group of people is also profitable in places which are metropolitan or cosmopolitan due to the time and congestion on the roads that’s been noticed. Hence this segment will opt for motorbikes for the purpose of convenience and time saving . (Gilbert, 3003).
Ans 3 – The marketing plan for BJ Motorbikes for the next two years can be outlined as follows.
· Executive Summary – This assignment for BJ Company focuses on the understanding of the segments that needs to be tapped, the environmental conditions that affect the business enterprise, the markets that needs to be entered in the international arena and to adopt the tactics and strategies to fully implement the marketing methods.
· Current Marketing Situation – The Company is doing well as it has multiple avenues in its store in addition to the motorbike manufacturing. It has the clothing outlet, accessories area, service center, training center, display mode of marketing which attracts the customers providing them a perfect experience in shopping. The share of the market is growing as compared to the competitors in the industry because of its strong product line and market segmentation strategy.
· Opportunity and issue analysis – The opportunity which BJ motorbikes is targeting is mainly on the Women biker segment which no other competitors has tapped in this area. Providing the accessories and clothing shopping facilities at the showroom outlet adds on to the experience they share. The loyalty cards that the firm has introduced will also be positive in their marketing campaign.
The issues – that will be dealt with are the website issues which doesn’t include the total company product line which will give limited information to the customers may limit their chances of getting noticed in the online promotional mode. The macro and micro environmental factors discussed above also pose issues for the company and the customers in turn.
Objectives – To provide the best customer relationship support facility for their customer’s base, to enter into the foreign market to synergize the opportunities, to enter into new markets and to increase upon the profits and market share in the next 2 years . (Business Resource Software, 2008 Gilbert, 3003).
· Marketing Strategy – BJ motorbikes will expand its market based on the low cost, high quality, availability of the best customer support facility and penetration into the foreign markets.
à Product strategy – The Company has re-designed their earlier Bike category into a new “Bike City” complex where in they have manufactured a number of variants in the biking segment. This includes scooter, small motorbikes, sports motor bikes, touring motorbikes serving the needs of every occasion and functional requirements.
à Price – The firm has inclination to penetrate into the markets both from the domestic and foreign markets by strategizing on the unique feature of low cost, best quality and utmost service facility at reasonable rates. Loyalty cards, schemes, offers and discounts are other ways to charge the customers in a friendly manner and at a convenient pace.
à Place – The firm has plans of adopting an online media to market and transact the products and services which is one channel strategy that is going to be implemented. Opening showrooms at convenient locations is a prime advantage for BJ Motorbikes.
à Promotions – sales promotions by way of discounts, schemes, loyalty cards; online shopping by way of websites, Advertisements on Magazines to attract the female bike segment, Advertising on local newspapers are some of the means of integrated communication mix.
à People – The staff is decided to have a training module to help them get tuned to the problems and queries that will be encountered during their purchase stages. The dress code, their style, the convincing skills portrayed will enhance the quality of their services support facility which they are providing to the end users.
à Physical Evidence – The neatly designed displays of the bikes, the banners, and signage’s which direct those to a particular location, the parking allotment, the visual merchandising to attract customers will pull the customers to the firm’s outlets.
à Process – The parking allotment processes, the administration – reception process, the billing transaction process, the services process, the management information system that is followed, the various tools used will help the firm’s to process their services and enterprises in a better manner. (Business Resource Software, 2008 Gilbert, 3003).
· Action Programs – The above strategies will be implemented based on the availability of resources at the earliest after checking on the decisions related to the number of intermediaries, number of employees at each showroom, number of locations and their boundaries, number of sales people to be on the field, the promotional tools used will all be planned and put into action.
· Financial Projection – £100,000 has been allocated during the launch period for communication budget of which 80% could be kept for advertising and events and sponsors and sales promotions and the remaining 20% could be assigned for online marketing. The amount is been kept for training the staff and to settle their requirements and for the brochures, leaflets, handouts etc.
· Implementation Control – Feedback on customer satisfaction based on the surveys after and before the purchase which is termed as feed forward along with the projection of sales in the future and the gap that has occurred will help in controlling the situation in a tracked manner (Business Resource Software, 2008) .
Ans 5: Initiatives to attract female bikers:
Female target audiences can be attracted by way of communication through newspapers, Television, and specially magazines so that the attention level is increased and the larger target market is attracted.
Sending direct mails to the target audience will help them know about the product and their services in a better form.
Conducting several tradeshows, events, trade fairs, and exhibitions does attract lots of female customers from varied demographic areas and having varied social functionalities.
Good prospects can be contacted by cold calling or by interviewing them personally and checking their financial projections and status and by telephoning them.
With the purchase of every Bike, the company should provide certain items or gift vouchers or offers which attracts female customers and which serves their needs and requirements (CNet Networks, 2008 & Schiffman, et al, 2008).
Initiatives to retain female bikers:
If there has been attrition in the number of customers, care should be taken to identify the reasons for this loss of customer base.
Conducting constant feedback after the sale has been completed serves an important factor for studying the behavior of the customers and for retaining them.
In order to motivate and retain customers, BJ Motorbikes should offer discounts, offers, schemes, gifts, rebates so that the retention level is increased.
Providing good training and refresher courses for the staff members also helps them settle and solve grievances of the customers that they feel satisfied and their expectations and relationships gets improved.
Constantly keeping in touch with the customers asking about their satisfaction level or asking their needs, informing them about the newer products etc. will showcase the closeness and the bonding which a firm can show to his customers.
Providing certain payment schemes thus leveraging on the burden on them will motivate them to have a good purchase decision (Kotler, 2005 & Schiffman, et al, 2008).
Ans 4 – Modes of Market Entry:
Indirect Exporting – Export is the normal way of getting involved into the foreign market. Here the involvement is not directly between the customers and the company but it is between the independent intermediaries, the domestic company and the foreign firm. The amount of commitment, risk, control and profit potential is lower as compared to the other modes of entry.
Direct Exporting – Directly the company sales representatives export the goods to the foreign market by traveling to the destination, there could be agents or distributors of the domestic firm located in the foreign company to sell their domestic products, or the domestic company could set up a branch or a subsidiary in the overseas market. In this mode, the amount is commitment, risk, control and profit potential increases as compared to indirect exporting.
Licensing – Licensing or Franchising concept can be used by the firms to enter into the foreign market. The licensor gets entry in the market with minimum risk and the licensee gains the advantage of already existed brand name or production facilities. Here the control, risk, commitment and profit potential is much higher as compared to the previous two modes.
Joint Ventures – Here the foreign investors will merge with the domestic firms or investors where in they share the ownership and the controlling mechanism. The risk is being shared among both the firms, there by reducing the burden of success and profit achievement. It is mainly opted for either political or economical reasons. Synergy gets multiplied in such an entry method. The risk, commitment, control and profit potential increases.
Direct Investment – The foreign company directly owns the domestic firm by starting the whole manufacturing plant in the foreign market and carrying out the assembling and designing in its own technique. The firm in this achieves economies of scale, it gets a positive image and goodwill in the host country and also the relationship with the various stakeholders gets deeper and better. The risk, commitment, control and profit potential is very much high with such an approach (Kotler, 2005 & QuickMBA, 2007).
The Best Mode of Entry for BJ Motorbikes:
Indirect or Direct Exporting is the best mode of entry for the firm to get into or penetrate into the international market. Since the company is first time going global, the risk involved, control required, the commitment that should be shown will be lower as in the other modes of entry. However Indirect Exporting would be ideal at this stage by making used of independent intermediaries who gets their commission for the sale carried out. The firm can also avail the benefit of changing their products if need arises at the price set at the domestic market which is cheaper as compared otherwise. The profits initially will be low as compared to the later stages as the company is not fully promoted and catered to, which will be improved when the firm establishes itself (Kotler, 2005 & QuickMBA, 2007).
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