Advertising and promotion in business management
For a business in order to be successful in the modern business world, effective use of advertising and promotion would be fundamental requirement. The present assignment would explore the marketing communication process by taking Morrison Supermarket as the core area of study. In the present paper four key learning outcomes would be achieved which would include scope of marketing communication process, importance of the advertisement process in the organization setting, below the line advertisement techniques used by the organizations and lastly planning mechanism of integrated marketing communication process in the business (Clow & Donald, 2009). The learning outcomes that would be achieved through the assignment are:
LO1 Understand the scope of marketing communications
LO2 Understand the role and importance of advertising
LO3 Understand below the line techniques and how they are used
LO4 Be able to evaluate integrated promotional strategies
Communication process is the process of sharing of information between two or more people for the purpose of delivering and exchanging knowledge so that mutual understanding can be build within the communicators of information. The main components of communication process include context, sender, message to be shared, medium, recipient and finally the feedback.
Figure1. Showing communication process
In the present context of Morrison super market; there could be several audiences with which communication system must be established so that understanding can be developed. Morrison needs to apply communication process in order to persuade and inform its customer about their products or services (Tom & Caywood, 2006). In order to communicate with the customers company need to formulate a message describing the features and the benefits about their products and services. In a communication process some of the vital key elements would be source & encoding feature, signal & channel, decoding & receiver, noise & feedback. If any of the elements got absent in the communication process then the transmitted information may distort.
In order to make advertising very effective, it is crucial for the advertisers to analyze that how the message may be met by the customers in the market. To make it easy, AIDA model of communication can be used for effective advertising & promotion by Morrison supermarket. AIDA model of communication stands for attention, interest, desire and action. It helps in developing effective communication strategies and communication with the customers in such a way that better responds to their needs & desires. In Morrison supermarket AIDA model would help in making an impactful advertisement process wherein the attention of the customers would be sought first before conveying message to them. After their attention is sought, organization would make sure to keep them interested by offering solution their problems. Then the desire would be created once the customers feel interested to the message conveyed by the company. In doing so, the promotional planner must create desire for the products which company wants to offer not which customer wants to have. At last, as customer have already shown their interest and desire for the products, final action should be to offer goods or services to them (Schultz & Schultz, 2008). The whole system of communication process for advertising and promotion purposes guide the marketers to target a market effectively. Hence, the role of effective communication using AIDA model can’t be undermined from the overall marketing process.
Figure 2.Showing AIDA Model
Advertisement process as a marketing communication is developed strategically for enhancing the business by use of creative advertisement tools. Advertising agencies design strategic elements in the advertisement process in sync with the marketing plan and marketing objectives of Morrison supermarket (Beakbane, 2013). From the advertising & promotion industries, the essential organizations that are doing the advertising and promotional work can be described as under:
- Generalized advertising organizations work for doing normal tasks in the advertising process like designing of logo etc. For example, WCRS is one of the full service advertising agencies which offer its services to many big clients such as BMW, The Sky, The Sun, Sony and Transport of London etc.
- Specialized advertising organizations designated for doing special tasks of advertising such as recruitment, industrial, entertainment etc. For example, Creative shops that are formed by few members of full service agencies for offering specialized services keeping in mind consumer requirements.
- Interactive advertising organizations designated for internet advertising bringing the utmost amount of consumers by way of promotion through popular websites face book, YouTube etc. For example, Carat, biggest media agency in UK offering services related with media (Beakbane, 2013).
- In-house advertising organization designated to do individual to individual advertisement. Such organizations main task is to achieve every single person though their promotional campaign.
Regulation of promotion can be done through abiding by the rules & regulations imposed by the regulating bodies for promotion and advertisement. The regulating bodies lay down rules and laws so as to ensure that proper standards are followed by the business organizations like Morrison supermarket. One such authority in UK which has laid down the standards for advertisement is Advertising Standards Authority (ASA). ASA is one of the key governing bodies for advertisements in UK and plays crucial role in developing vital rules such as protecting consumers from unfair trade regulations, distance selling act, data protection act, consumer credit act and sales of goods act (McCarthy, 2012).
- A sale of good act was developed in year 1893 in UK for regulating the contract for purchase and sale of goods. This act regulates the organizations that whether they are offering products in good working conditions and to ensure that the goods are safe and satisfactory for the consumers. The main aim of this act is to examine that the organizations commitments pertaining to specific goods or services are true or not.
- Unfair trade regulations act regulates organizations to not to convey misleading messages to the consumers and it examines whether the companies are offering the same which they promise in their advertisements. This act forbids organizations to use sales techniques which cause consumers harassment, to claim false credentials, to display false trade mark, to claim false endorsements.
- Customer credit act was established in year 1974 and amended thereafter with minor changes in year 2006. Under customer credit act there are several restrictions on the organizations in order to maintain relationship between the debtors and creditors by way of fair trade practices in the business. The restrictions imposed can be regarding proper license requirements, avoidance of unfair trade with the creditors and creditors amounting £ 25000 can be termed as unfair trade (Matt, 2009).
- Data protection act was developed in the year 1984 in UK and finally amended in year 1988 to be applicable in the present business context. Under this act, provisions are imposed on maintaining the secrecy of the customer data. The consumer data has to be erased after some time from the organization database and it must be only used for the purpose it was taken by the company.
- Under the distance selling act, rules are framed pertaining to online selling process which enlists the regulations that key information on the product, true contact details and refund policy etc. must be provided to the customers. Customers must be informed about dispatch of product or receipt of return and must be given ample time for checking the product so that in case the product is not as per the customer needs then they have the opportunity to return the same to the company (McCarthy, 2012).
The impact of information communication & technology (ICT) is very significant in taking the organizational advertisement strategies to the next level. Due to ICT, the promotional and advertisement strategies can be developed with more effectiveness. In the present context example of Morrison supermarket’s community engagement campaign “Let’s grow” can be considered for understanding the impact of ICT on the advertisement and promotion strategies of the campaign. The improvements which have been made by ICT in developing advertisement and promotional domain for the campaign can be discussed in below points:
- Website: Website regarding the campaign has been developed in such a manner that customers can look into the benefits of the campaign by just one click on the website. Also the parent website of Morrison supermarkets has provided links to the “Let’s Grow” pages for customer convenience. Thus the advertisement made with the help of online tools may help Morrison Supermarkets to take their advertisement to next level (Moskowitz, 2006).
- Email: For promoting the campaign, Morrison used direct mailing system to inform the schools about the campaign and to inform them that how they could get involved. The mailing system helped in communicating with the schools, third party gardening equipment suppliers etc. Morrison technical department designed attractive mails which are then sent to the schools and other interested parties in order to explain the various salient features of the campaign. Being a lost cost and high impact tool, email marketing tool is highly effective (Matt, 2009).
- Video conferencing: Video conferencing tools helped in direct connection with the clients for promoting the campaign. In addition to this, celebrity Gardener Diarmuid Gavin was featured on the videos to talk with the client and explain features of the campaign through video conferencing.
Hence, the present example has shown that the campaign “Let’s Grow” has been benefitted through usage of ICT tools so as to take the advertisement and promotion process of Morrisons to the next level wherein effectiveness of their promotional campaign is much higher as compared to the traditional advertisement methods.
3.1 Explain primary techniques of below the line promotion and how they are used in an integrated promotional strategy for a business or product.
In order to have direct interaction with the customer segment or other channels at which Morrison have direct control, below the line promotional techniques are used by the company. Basically, there are two types of below the line techniques- primary techniques and secondary techniques. These techniques include sales promotion, personal selling, and public relations, direct marketing as the major tools for promotion purposes and they can be discussed in the below points:
§ Sales promotion: Sales promotion tool included under below the line promotion techniques include distribution of free items with the main product sold by the company, or offering gift vouchers or loyal points to the consumers. This technique would include offering of discounts to the consumers of the company based on their purchasing frequency and loyalty with the company. For example, Morrison in its campaign “let’s Grow “offered that for each £10 spent by the customer, he would be given a voucher which can be used for redeeming gardening tools (Elliott, 2010).
§ Sponsorship: Sponsorship is also used by the company as a below the line promotion technique for building consumer awareness. For example, Morrison should sponsor the television show Ant & Dec which eventually would act as an advertisement tool for the fresh foods offered at Morrison.
§ Public relation: The promotional tool of PR as a below the line promotional technique would be used for building a positive environment with the help of various publicity activities. In this technique Morrison can arrange for press launches, press releases or PR events for promoting the campaign or for promotion of its products or services.
§ Direct Marketing: Direct marketing tool of below the line promotion uses mails, flyer, personalized letters, telemarketing tool, packaging design etc. for directly reaching to the clients. A range of leaflets and factsheets can be prepared in this technique for targeting the audiences. For example, for promoting the “let’s Grow” campaign, Morrison distributed leaflets throughout all the Morrison stores, and before the launch, staff briefing were held to inform about the campaign mechanisms.
§ Digital Marketing: Through this tool Morrison can create company website and can use application of social media tools such as Face book, twitter, you tube etc. One more way to promote the campaign can be through the use of blogging over internet so that it would reach more potential consumers.
§ Product Placement: This advertising and promotion technique would help in promoting the company products via television, films or other media. With this tool, companies hope that public will take note of the products used by the movie characters and thus would think of using the products themselves (Mick, 2006).
§ Loyalty programs: Promotional tools that offer customer a reward that can be price discounts and free products due to their frequent buying pattern or other such activity are called the loyalty programs. These promotion tools can be used by Morrison supermarket for retaining the existing customers to its brand. In this program Morrison may opt to give its loyal customers a verification card as an evidence for enrollment in the program and for taking the given advantage.
Other techniques that can be deployed by Morrison for promoting its products and services on a non- traditional basis of advertising would include personal selling techniques, word of mouth techniques, use of corporate communication, new media etc. These effective and non conventional methods of promotion can be described in the below points as:
- Personal Selling: As a promotional tool personal selling has a direct impact on the customer creation aim of advertisement strategies which is due to the fact that in this technique personal contact is developed between the advertiser and the client which would eventually help in knowing the customer desires for the particular product. It is a way of setting one to one communication with the potential buyer. There could be various methods of doing personal selling which would be explained below as:
- Door to door sale technique can be used as an effective personal selling tool in which a salesman is appointed for doing sale and advertisement of products to the general public by walking from door to door. In this technique there would be face to face conversation between the customer and the salesman.
- Exhibition: By arranging exhibition for the products or services, customers can be attracted and informed about the products as in this method, the company staff gives demonstration about the working of the particular product which greatly impacts a customer decision to buy the product (Benjamin & Baker, 2012). Also, in such exhibitions full information and advantages of the product are illustrated to the customers to convince them to purchase the same.
- New Media: Through this technique Morrison can influence the customer’s decisions in a positive manner as development of web would provide source of information to the consumers. Morrison can use ‘search engine optimization’ web tool to make sure that its company’s website is shown at the top of every relevant search results page. Moreover, Morrison can use paid for web advertising, such as pay per click on Google in order to profile its business to prospective customers.
- Customer newsletters and magazines: Using customer newsletters for promotional purposes would help Morrison in building good image of the company as sharing information with the customers through newsletters and magazines would show that it is a knowledge based company. Consequently, the company would appear open and trustworthy which would support in building image of the company.
4.1 Follow an appropriate process for the formulation of a budget for an integrated promotional strategy.
Process of campaign management
Process adopted for the campaign management in present context for Morrison would contain below mentioned steps:
- Assessment of the market communication opportunities: This step of the campaign would analyze expectations from the target market. Further this step of the process would identify to whom we are sending message i.e. customer, general public or any other stakeholder.
- Determining objectives: Chosen target market of Morrison would be capture by launching their promotional campaign with defined short term and long term objectives.
- Determining promotional mix: Promotional mix decisions are taken by the organization by making sure that setup of promotional mix is such that interest can be created among the buyers by making use of different promotional techniques (Ademola, 2010).
- Communication channel to be adopted: After identification of the target market and objectives with which communication need to be developed it is important that based on the budget and effectiveness parameter communication channels are being selected by the Morrison.
- Development of promotional message: Promotional message for the campaign would be developed based on the content, structure, format and appeal. This promotional message would be implemented for the target audience and as per the demand of product for Morrison.
- Development of promotional budget: In this process overall budget would be set for the promotional campaign including above mentioned processes and especially mix of promotions and media planning etc.
- Determination of the campaign effectiveness: This process would be initialized for Morrison’s present campaign through situational analysis, making timetable and copy platform etc. Feedback from the consumers can be taken regarding their satisfaction with the products and services of Morrison.
Development of promotional plan for Morrison’s new campaign named “Let’s Grow” can be given as under:
- Morrison background: Morrison wants to setup a new campaign wherein organizational value of Morrison can be highlighted to the consumers so as to deal with the current price war going in the retail industry segment. Concept of fresh fruits and vegetables needs to be showcased to customers along with habit among children to grow their fruits and vegetables themselves.
- Company analysis: SWOT analysis for Morrison can be given as under:
Table 1: Showing the SWOT Analysis for Morrison
- Product or idea launched: To provide shopping voucher for consumers at the purchase of every £10 spent in the store which can be redeemed in the gardening tools, seeds and farming equipments for schools.
4.3 Plan the integration of promotional techniques into the promotional strategy for business or product
Integration promotional techniques would be used by Morrison through usage of different media types such as the press, TV advertisements, direct mails and online advertisements etc.
- Objectives of the promotional plan
- To combat price war in industry by establishing values of Morrison
- To highlight importance of fresh fruits and vegetables for making it USP of Morrison
- To enhance customer footfall and overall revenue by the campaign
- Type of campaign
Present campaign of Morrison would run for three months period. For the first two weeks burst campaign would be made with high frequency parallel with the new idea launch. For the rest 10 weeks drip campaign would be made with lesser frequency as compared to the initial weeks of the campaign (Goldstein & Lee, 2011).
- Campaign strategy
Strategy adopted for the present campaign would be pull strategy so as to target the end consumers. End consumers would be persuaded by making use of the below the line promotional mix such as sales promotion and direct marketing sponsorship. CSR would also be used for the campaign so that consumers are asked to donate farm equipments and seeds for schools.
- The Budget
Budget for the present campaign would be approx £2.5 million. Some of the important factors which would be used to determine this budget would include size of the target audience, objective of the campaign, based on competitor activities and based on previous budget of the organization.
- Promotional mix
Direct mail: Direct mails would be sent to the schools so as to inform them regarding Let’s Grow campaign of Morrison and way through which they can get involved into the campaign run by the organization.
TV advert: TV adverts were given which features celebrity named Gardener Diarmuid Gavin.
Local and national press: News given in the local and national press so as to create awareness among general public and consumers regarding “Let’s Grow” campaign.
Online activities: Online activities were done on various parenting websites so as to provide the link for Let’s Go campaign of Morrison.
- Type of media and media planning
Reach and frequency are the two important factors while making decision regarding media. Electronic media would be used by making advertisements in television for the present campaign. Burst campaign is made by running the spot advertisement and detailed advertisements as well (between 5 PM to 8 PM for 2 weeks). Drip campaign can be used by running advertisement for every 2 hours between 4 PM to 9 PM between week days for next 10 weeks. Print media can be used through local and national press. Timetable for the media would be developed according to the 10 week plan and by considering different stages for the media plan such as the initial research, evaluation of the search results & planning, pre-advertisement, launch of idea, post advertisement and evaluation & measurement of the results in comparison to the original objectives of the campaign. All these steps would be helpful in order to develop the media planning (Dacko, 2008).
The promotional campaign developed for Morrison would be evaluated for achieving the desired results and objectives for which present campaign was designed. Outcomes of the campaign would be compared with the initial objectives and a comparative analysis would determine whether results were obtained in accordance to the planned objectives or not. Based on the attainment of results this promotional campaign would be given the heading of successful or failure. Below factors would be important in order to determine the success criteria for the presently developed promotional campaign of Morrison:
- No of customers coming to the Morrison store as a result of the present campaign along with incremental revenue gained by Morrison as compared to the normal business days
- Perception of consumers regarding Morrison stores and their product offering for the fresh fruits and vegetable (Dev & Don, 2005)
- To assess whether Morrison brand is compared with other retail industry brands for price effectiveness or for the product effectiveness through the concept of fresh fruits and vegetables
- To gain higher market share through showcasing values of Morrison in the retail industry to the consumers
Incremental revenue gained by Morrison would be compared through the present campaign and in case there is additional earning made by the organization then the success or failure of the campaign would be decided.
Present paper has revealed the promotional campaign designed for one of the major retail brand in UK i.e. Morrison. In order to combat the price war and highlight values for the Morrison present campaign was designed by making use of the different media types and promotional techniques. It is expected that Morrison would be able to attain the objectives for which present campaign have been developed by the organization.