Over-the-Top Creative (pty) Ltd.
The marketing plan is considered as one of the effective components of a business plan. This is because the marketing plan enables the business to summarize who, where, what and when the various activities of company marketing are to be conducted and how effectively they will be conducted to boost the company targets. This paper is aimed at conducting analysis of Over Top Creative marketing plan. This will put into consideration the marketing plan and various components of the marketing plan that have been utilized by Over Top creative. This will offer the pros and cons of various strategies that have been highlighted in the marketing plan. Ideally, the marketing plan offers a basis of the business’ ongoing strategy for the company.
Marketing plan overview
Over Top creative is located in Toowong, Brisbane. This store features only clothing items that are produced within 20 km radius of Toowong with a low volume production as well as one off items that are produced by individual designers, craftspeople or producers. The business marketing plan is an ongoing strategy for creating accessible and funky store where the customers are not only treated with care but also with complete transparency of the sourcing process through effective display with the story of each designer on the card on the clothing items. The marketing plan has covered an overview of the business, analysis of the retail environment with the market and a detailed description of the marketing activities and strategies that have been designed by the business in order for them to ensure success of their activities.
The business overview has given a detailed description of the business and the present outlooks of the business in terms of performance. The business overview is effective since it has offered essential information related to the location of the business, the business structure and the products being offered within the business. Relatively it has also offered essential information related to the mission and vision of the business within the market. The overview has highlighted the company performance and experience which are important in categorizing the company in terms of capability to offer quality items.
When describing a business one of the most important thing that one should mention is the business structure (Varadarajan, 2010). By mentioning the business structure one is able to give detailed information about the type of operation and also where the business is established or new. Within this component they have been able to mention the products, differentiation of the product from other products in the market, business objectives and remarkable difference. For instance, the business claims that it will bring a fresh new experience to their customers who will shop something that will stand out from mass produced products that are available in the market/ major store franchises. They have been specific in showing their competitive edge and differentiation in the mass market. For instance, they have put emphasis on creative design and differentiation in customer experience through posters and cards that will be used to showcase amazing talents that are used in designing each display and piece of cloth in the store. They have offered a good description of the products being offered and the varieties of clothing’s that they have with a range of products for both men and women. However, while describing the products being offered in the business they have include the unit price
With regards to mission and vision of the company they have shown how the business will be profitable to both the society and the establishment with factors that claim the success of their products in the market. The vision of the business is to be a strong influence and impact on the buying patterns for their consumers who are mostly university students as well as local customers who make sense of fashion within Toowong. The business will be driven by a strong sustainability vision that co creates the value of the producers, designers and customers as well as the entire community. Their mission is to provide creative offers at a friendly price as compared to the mass market garments through a collection of expert tailors and young designers. The strength of the company is established through viral influence of creating a brand for the community that will act as both ambassadors and customers as the business seeks to co create value with them (Kotler and Keller, 2008).
Marketing strategies are believed to be as a result of careful market analysis. Ideally, a market analysis is considered important component of the marketing plan since it enables the entrepreneur to familiarize with all the features of the market so that they are able to make a better decision on how to reach the target market. Marketing analysis is alo important in enabling the business in establishing the right quality for then product, pricing strategies, promotional and distribution strategies that can be effective for the business. In addition, it offers an indication about the growth of the products in the market as well as the development of the entire industry and how much effort is needed to beat competition in the industry.
With regards to this, the plan has offered a detailed target market giving the total addressable market for the business. The Over the Top creative aims at customer target from the age of 18 to 30 years. The segmentation factors have been put into consideration with demographics and geographic attributes of the consumers being highlighted. For instance, the target consumers include graduate and undergraduate students at University of Queensland, campus staff and people that live or work within Toowong area. Thus it is evident that the company has emphasized on demographics such as gender, age and income levels.
The market research is essential in understanding the customer needs as well as valuable insights about the market conditions, customers and competitive landscape (Weinstein, 2013). The knowledge about the market is important in building a more effective marketing plan. The market research was omitted bringing about another shortcoming of Over the Top Creative marketing plan. The research on the market was not completed in this case. Details about the market trends, market size, economic stability, seasonal variations that would impact the market and some of the external factors that would impact the business as well as the market were not analyzed. This would include a Pestle analysis of the market in order to give a clear picture of the external factors that would impact the business. This is important for the business while making decisions since they are able to make market driven decisions and effectively plan for the future marketing actions that will enable the business to beat competition in the market. Market research can enable the business reveal major aspects of the competitors’ service and products, target audience and marketing strategies. Thus, they are able to evaluate the most effective techniques to increase their sales through beating the competitors.
The customer profile has offered an ideal description of the consumer through highlighting the buying patterns and consumer behavior for the university students at Queensland. Considerably they have offered the buyer history taking into consideration the psychographics, demographics and geographic characteristics thus being able to analyze the consumer attributes for the group of students that make their purchase at Over the Top Creative.
Although the company has created great differentiation in the type of products being offered in the market by other departmental stores, they have failed to evaluate competitor profiling. They have only identified other competing departmental stores within the area. Ideally, competitor profiling is considered important since it influence the promotion, distribution, pricing and product strategies (Aaker, Kumar and Day, 2008). When considering the position of the product in the market it is important to put into consideration what other products are being offered in the market. The plan has failed to identify the various market mix strategies being utilized by other competing business bringing about a major shortcoming for the plan. This would be essential in identifying the gaps in marketing and opportunities for the business through effective marketing strategy for the business.
A winning marketing plan offers marketing objectives that set the direction of the marketing strategies. The plan omitted marketing objectives which are essential in fitting the marketing plan to the long term objectives of the business. Typically, the marketing objectives should follow the SMART approach which include specific, accurate, measureable and time bound. For instance, in this case some of the marketing objectives would be to increase the sales, growth of the market shares and building on brand awareness as well as enhancing customer relationships.
The purpose of the smart marketing objectives is to ensure that one has put essential clarification on what they want as the end results of the marketing that can be monitored and plans developed to enable the business to effectively meet their business objectives (Wood, 2007). For instance, these may include to increase the number of clients by 15 percent within 18 months and to increase sales by 10 percent within 12 months.
The financial analysis can be used for different functions within the business but in the case of marketing plan it is used to show the current situation of the business. The financial analysis was omitted in the marketing plan despite the fact that it is important for gauging the operations of the business. This is important in measuring how well the marketing strategies that have been used before have been working how well they can utilize and make alternative decisions and ensure marketing control. In this case therefore it was important to include the financial analysis to be able to evaluate the current operations Over the Top Creative. This would be important for controlling the marketing activities and developing future plans.
The study for financial analysis includes: evaluation of trends, comparative analysis and assessing the current financial limitations and strengths within the whole business, the components of the business or the brand. This will also be important in financial planning where the marketing management is able to decide on the activities that they will undertake to facilitate effective marketing.
Considerably, this section would be important in analyzing the sales and profitability of the company. This could be done through various methods such as the cost and sales analysis, ration analysis as well as the contribution and profit analysis. This is would be important in analyzing the sales and profitability of the overall market and enabling the business to identify which products or services in the market have a high demand as well as the products with low demands in order to increase their marketing capabilities to improve the demand for the products.
SWOT analysis has over time been considered as straight forward model that is used to analyze the weaknesses, strengths, threats and opportunities to create a better foundation of the business market strategy. Through determining the strengths, opportunities, weaknesses and threats of a business, the company is able to point out the customer needs and how they can effectively market their products to increase their sales and reach more consumers (Kumar, Rahman and Kazmi, 2013). Over the Top creative has been able to clearly identify its strengths, threats, opportunities and weaknesses that will offer a powerful insight into the critical and potential issues that are affecting the business. For instance, they have identified young and innovative designers and location as one of the strengths that the business has capitalized on to win the market. They have been able to identify opportunities such as growing number of concerns of sustainable clothing procedures within the company. A major contribution of the SWOT analysis is to enable planning process (Winer, 2008). Through effective highlighting of the weakness and threats and activities to address the threat and weaknesses of the business thus achieving their business goals.
This section is important in summarizing the overall marketing strategy as well as the marketing mix that will be relied on by the business in positioning itself in the market in order to meet the needs of consumers. Marketing strategy is considered as the continued efforts and approaches that are used in achieving the goals of the marketing plan. The strategy moves around how the planning hits the objectives while placing the marketing priorities (Freng SvendsenHaugland, S. A., Grønhaug and Hammervoll, 2011). In their core marketing strategy, Over the Top creative relies on the statement “when you buy local, the impacts are global”. The position goal of the business to be identified as a business which is better known for products that are environmentally sustainable.
Over the Top creative has taken into account the activities that are relevant for the business in their strategy and marketing mix. With regards to this, the plan has described the marketing mix approach for the business with pricing policy, brand elements and promotion. These are tactical tools within marketing that the company relies on to respond to the demand of its target market (Goi, 2009). In the case of Over the Top creative, they have core branding elements that have been used to influence the products being offered, a pricing policy and promotion approaches to entice their customers. For instance, in the case of branding elements they have a simple but striking logo and a color theme including blues and greens to tie their design to environmental sustainability.
They have an informational website that has featured the same color theme and logo that has linked the company information to local buying. Their products and service innovations have been aimed at covering a large customer base through offering products and services that engage with various groups. Promotion has entailed the various marketing materials that have been used by the business to reach their target market.
The pricing policy is generally considered as how the business has set the prices for the services and products based on value, costs and competition (Graham, 2008). The pricing strategy involves more than reaction to the marketing situations. Ideally, establishing the bases for their prices is important in determining the pricing goals such as increasing the long term and short term profits. While developing the pricing strategies, it is important to take into account the current market conditions in order to ensure that effective pricing strategies are put into place (Cravens and Piercy, 2006).
In the case of Over the Top Creative, they have relied on the value based pricing where the price adheres to the seeming value of the item to the consumers. The value of the item or products is obtained from the customer’s preferences, needs and expectations (Hawkins and Mothersbaugh, 2010). For instance, much of the products will be valued similar to the high value chain store. However, the prices for the individual items has been ranged between $30 to $150 due to the difference in the value and the cost structure of the individual and mass producers. Relatively, all the prices of the products will be featured with a 67 percent of the mark up over the price of the supplier. Over the Top creative considers this as an important pricing strategy since this is lower than the industry standard but will ensure that the retail prices are more competitive as the items are valued to me expensive to offer.
The pricing policy for the business includes small gift items to consumers who buy in bulk of casual shoppers who are priced below $25. The business found that by have prices below $25 is the right price for the customers to enable them purchase items more efficiently with pocket friendly prices. Relatively, pricing will be similar to high quality store on the country road. Over the Top creative stores are located in more convenient areas for people living within a radius of 3 kilometers from their store.
However, the four P’s of marketing mix that have been utilized by the business have underemphasized some of the essential marketing activities. For instance, the services have not been mentioned explicitly despite the fact that they can be categorized in terms of service products. Relatively, other essential marketing activities have not been addressed such as packaging. Customer want to buy solution and value not only products, they also want to know the consumer costs after using the products. In addition, they also need services and products to be convenient and efficient for them to purchase as fast as possible and also reliance on two-way communication with the businesses that produce the market. These are some of the issues that Over the Top creative has failed to put into consideration in their marketing approach in order to achieve the goals of the consumers.
Marketing communication techniques are considered as the strategies used by a business to reach the target audience through various communication means (Jain, Haley, Voola and Wickham, 2012). These includes the message, the target and the medium through which the message is to reach the target audience. Marketing communications are used to create a lasting relationship with the consumers through influences that attract more consumers into the market through sustainable approaches (Perreault, Cannon and McCarthy, 2011). As mentioned above, it is the entire range of activities that include from media relations to paid marketing to market the products. It is important for a business tom understand that each marketing channel that one chooses should have similar brand perception and where the consumers have been seen to be active. Relatively, there is need to choose a marketing channel who budget will fit with the allocated resources.
Considerably, while integrating the marketing communication strategies it is important for a company to ensure that they follow certain steps. These are important in creating the marketing materials for the products or items. These include understanding the target audience through consume insights, define a unique selling proposition, examining the marketing communications mix and the success merits of each marketing channel (Baker, 2014). These are important steps in choosing the most effective marketing channel for the marketing campaigns.
Over the Top creative has chosen various marketing communication strategies that they believe are more effective and will enable them reach their target audience. These have included the social media plan, lead generation plans, referrals and web plan. Having the target audience being millennials and generation X these techniques can effectively enable the business reach their target audience.
They have utilized a marketing kit that is focused on the businesses that will offer referrals to Over the Top Creative. The marketing kit has been considered as an enabler to attract new customers (Wilson, 2010). Ideally, the marketing kit will be powerful in making the consumers think “my problem can be solved perfectly by this business”. With regards to this, the business has planned to use customer testimonials, introductory letters and a referral program through which they will try to reach the customers. They will rely on customer marketing materials such as profile cards, business cards and profile posters as well as printed shopping bags that have been displayed in the stores. The referral programs would be more effective if there were more engage tactics to promote the referral programs. For instance, the customer list should be informed about the refer a friend offer that will easily intensify the results. Considerably, using incentives that fit the consumers and have substantial strong advocates is important for the referral programs. This has been effectively utilized within Over the Top Creative where member and the guest brought will receive 10% of the listed prices. Ideally, through incentivized scheme the referred customer and the member are encouraged about the program. Relatively, referrals have been shared to non-competing business whore are offered 10% off coupons.
A web plan entails creation of a website that will facilitate attracting customers to the business. Over the Top Creative has planned designed a website that is effective plan for reaching their target audience. The website will constitute essential resources to potential customers through listing local business, groups and events that serve the needs for consumers who are environmentally conscious. The website is aimed to create a connection between the product name and the reliable interest in facilitating an ecologically friendly operation. The website will be designed to be informative thus being a resource to anyone who is interested in in buying green and local buying in Toowong area. The lead conversion plans have been connected to the website to maintain the site. The site will also encourage the email newsletter which will allow advertising since the email new letter will be sent to the website each and every week.
Social media plan
An effective social media plan will enable the business to connect to consumers and increase the awareness about the product thus boosting the sales and leads (Tuckwell, 2010). The over the Top creative social media sites will feature the same information about the business but with little difference. The Facebook page will permit the users to directly engage with the company through posting the dislikes, likes and ideas about the products to the wall which can be directly answered by the management. Their Instagram page will have a minimum of three posts every week that will be related to the design and new products that are suitable. Relatively, on twitter they will post a minimum of 3 posts every week with similar intentions to other social media sites. The most important ingredient for doing social media marketing is having a strategy. Considerably, Over the Top Creatives have had an effective strategy that is both creative and organized. This will facilitate reaching the target consumers effectively.
The business has planned to rely on effective lead generations such as radio advertising and print advertising that will focus on the informative website as well as remarkable difference of Over the Top creative. They have also utilized Flyer advertising and google ads which are effective techniques of creating awareness to the customers. The lead generation plan has been accompanied by advertising plan for the print and radio advertising. For their case, the main mass media communication will be radio advertising.
A marketing calendar is effective in covering the marketing activities for the business. Ideally, every marketing plan requires time in order to pay off later. Creating an appropriate content strategy for the marketing activities will ease the pressure of publishing gaps during the marketing periods. With regards to this, it is evident that Over the Top Creative have effectively planned the operations of the business in terms of marketing to effectively reach their target consumers. The CEO will get involved in one marketing action each day such as email newsletter or website or reviewing the flyer and print. Weekly the CEO will examine the Google AdWords and analytics in order to amend the keywords and site content campaign. Relatively, monthly, the CEO will emphasis on the advertising initiatives. This is an important strategy for marketing engagement that will improve the marketing strategy for the business. The marketing activities have been appropriately planned over the year to ensure that there are no publishing gaps as well as ensure that all the marketing activities build effective awareness about the brand.
A good marketing plan has to include financial goals for the business thus an important component of the marketing plan. This is an important indicator for the ability of the business to continue to function financially as it implements the marketing plan (Drummond, Ensor and Ashford, 2010). With the case of Over the Top creative, they have planned to track their financial abilities through sales forecast for every month. This will be effective in determine the marketing activities that most efficient for the business and how well they can reach their customers.
Evaluation and control
Controls are essential in evaluating the marketing plan and how well it has achieved the intended goals for the business (Mullins et al., 2013). Over the Top creative has relied on controls such as marketing budgets and the financial expenditures with the planned goals that will be compared after every three months. To evaluate the marketing activities, they have relied on metrics that will efficiently assess whether goals outlined in the marketing plan are being achieved. These includes the leads converted, average transaction per consume, PR mentions, testimonials and referrals. These are important evaluations that will maximize on the return on marketing plan and monitoring the progress of the plan.
Conclusion and recommendations
Over the TOP creative has got most of its strategies/ plans right despite a few that needs to be modified and reconsidered to be more effective. With such incredible market strategies, the business can be able to achieve it some of modifications in the marketing strategies are taken into consideration. Over the Top creative should understand their market segmentation since the product diversification has not been done well. The company should analyze their competitors in order to improve its marketing strategies and ability to beat similar products in the market. Finally, through developing and improving their marketing communications strategies to actionable plans that will align with the business metrics and objectives will increasingly benefit the business in achieving their goals.
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