Marketing is the process of whether firms investigate, create and offer goods and services in order to fulfill any requirement of the market which is their target. For any company, this is a crucial element in their business plan and for this, a marketing department is specifically created which aims in satisfying the demands and expectations of the consumers by offering them quality goods at reasonable price points.
Very often the subject of marketing is perceived only as a selling activity. However, the element of sales is just a small part of the total marketing cycle. Selling covers activities which attract consumers while marketing encompasses investigation, research of the market, manufacturing of goods, strategies to reach out to the end user, retain customers, build brand goodwill and fulfill customer requirement (Steenkamp, 2017). For understanding this in more details Coca Cola Soft Drinks Company is chosen.
Coca Cola considers marketing as an important business model which helps it reach out to the end user, discover more data about the marketplace, explores the competition, use its resources effectively, save up on money and time, enhances sale, reduces risks and have a better grip over every aspect. This report discusses marketing endeavors of Coca Cola.
Coca Cola is one of the largest beverages producing enterprise in the world and a leading soft drink and syrup product producer and manufacturer. The drinks from Coca Cola are being used by customers all across the globe at a frequency of over around 600 million times a day and this number keeps raising. The firm is however not one who believes only in past victories. Rather it considers its future as a constant challenge where it needs to always hunt new markets and targets so that it can enhance market share in the world as much as it is possible. The main aim of such an approach is to enhance the presence and make it robust.
Here is a small overview of per capital consumption of soft drinks in US
Source: Business Insider
Coca Cola Active User Increase Graph
Coca Cola sells over one billion numbered serving on a daily basis roughly. Every second over 10,450 Coca Cola beverages is consumed. In 2017, over 12 billion people have been witnessed to be consuming this brand. The brand places itself in all the 7 different continents in the world serving over 95 % of the population in the world. The world often discusses and questions how the organization has grown so much in such a less time. The brand uses varied marketing technologies to rise high and enhance market share in the soft drink sector. New paradigms have helped Coca Cola maintain its status quo effectively supported by advanced technologies. US alone witness over 800,000,000 servings sold thus making Coca Cola the brand with the largest share in the market.
The mission of the brand Coca Cola is maximizing the value of the shareowners over time gradually. For the achievement of the mission, the brand has designed ways and drawn goals for creating a better value to be served for its customers, partners and to the communities (Mooij, 2018).
Coca Cola Company has with time developed its value by planning an advanced business model which is supported by the following beliefs. With advanced marketing strategies the brand aims to enhance the value from the end user.
- Focusing on consumer demands.
- Keeping the brand as the core business (Jones & Comfort, 2018).
- Serving consumers with range of non-alcoholic beverages.
- To be the best marketers in the globe.
- Localized way of thoughts and actions.
- Lead the world as a model corporate citizen.
Coca Cola aims in making a strategic marketing orientation covering in-depth research and analysis to evolve further. Using a strategic mindset and approach the firm aims in enjoying its competitive advantages. Product and market orientation are the two major approaches of the case study firm Coca Cola. In a production based approach, it can be stated that the main focus of the enterprise is placed on the entire production process and also on the main product as well. On the other hand, the marketing approach is where the brand consistent detects, reviews as well as analyses the requirement of the customers (Sinha & Sheth, 2018).
Coca Cola considers a well-planned marketing model or strategy to be its primary cornerstone for its success and present competitive positioning. One of the basic guides for directing the path of this enterprise is its strategic marketing planning based on the analysis of the 5Cs or company, customers, collaborators, context and competition. These are basic marketing frameworks which are used by commercial firms like Coca Cola in order to analyze their environment. Understanding these elements give firms an insight into their primary driving forces, risks, challenges, and weak areas.
Coca Cola Company is analyzed using the 5Cs framework of marketing. The firm aims to detect its competitive advantage and to enjoy it in a sustainable manner. In order to achieve this, the brand needs to enhance its economies of scales, brand equities and develop technologically. Following are the company analysis:
- a) Spending on research and development – Coca Cola invests enormously in research and development to innovate its varied segments of products, design of the product, optimization, promotional strategies and the development of IT-based network for supporting distribution and promotional models.
- b) Production scales – The supply chain of Coca Cola is flexible and robust and it can fulfil the basic challenges which will help the firm enhance its scale of production. The firm uses varied techniques which will help fulfil the consumer requirement of the products.
- c) Human resource quality – The brand Coca Cola has some of the best workforces carefully chosen and supervised with the support of high-quality human resource management policies and strategies. The strong marketing department o the brand helps it promote effective campaigns which attract a lot of competent talent to the company.
- d) Financial status and resource availability – Coca Cola has a very strong capital resource. The firm can afford to spend its funds over new product launches, marketing strategies and for making the position of the brand better than what it is at the moment.
Potential consumers of Coca Cola can be broken in three primary sizes and these are a total available market, serviceable available market, and the target market. The entire company market segments are divided or segmented on the basis of demographics, geography, psychographics, and many other differentiating factors. Total available market or the TAM is the general segment of the consumer which covers all the potential customer demands in relation to a certain product or a service. SAM or Serviceable available market is the potential uses of the products or services and its classifications.
The collaborators of Coca Cola Company encompass distribution channels and partners who are located both at the upstream as well as the downstream of the entire value chain. The collaborator analysis of this firm is done critically for evaluating the entire supply chain on the basis of factors like the bargaining power, deals brought by suppliers, agility, and flexibility of the distribution chain and the revenue sharing taking place in all the steps of its supply chains. Based on the parameters od risk exposure managers ensure to find national as well as global risks since Coca Cola is located all over the world.
The basic marketing function of the marketing department of Coca-Coca is designing robust techniques which will aid the firm to throw off pressures created from the competition and new entrants. The marketing managers of the brand make decisions about how they can positioning the brand in the midst of competing brands like Pepsi, the marketing models used by the competition, whether the firm must invest in a niche product and the industry in which the brand has competition. An extensive competition analysis is made by the brand to analyze its competition
Context is the environment in which the business operates. Often using a PESTEL analysis firm like Coca Cola understands the areas or business environmental fairs which can impact the performance of the brand. Changes occur in the context impacts the entire sector rate than just one company. It can also be advantageous for the firm in some cases and help it in achieving and sustaining competitive advantages.
Coca Cola Company undergoes a different type of marketing activities. They analyze the feedback and response given by the customers extensively to understand the perception of the consumers. Market research is conducted to analyze the marketing strategies to find out crucial information about the different Cs such as customers, connect, competitors and collaborators with respect to the soft drink brand.
Methodologies are used by Coca Cola to research the marketing activities of the firm. Marketers use their marketing intelligence for studying the different kinds of data it collects and in report preparation as well. The firm uses primary as well as secondary data for this purpose.
Using primary data Coca Cola brand can gather some specific information about its newly launched products. Asking some crucial questions the firm can find an answer with the help of primary data. Some of the common questions asked as a part of primary data collection can be asking some common questions like – “ Do you like the latest Coca Cola advertisements?” or “What is your feedback about the flavor or price of the soft drinks” etc. Secondary data is collected for research. For this paper, it is collected from research made by other researchers on the same subject. The internet, magazines, websites, published journals, books, and articles are used to collect secondary data (White, 2018).
- a) What customers want?
Coca Cola uses data analysis team to monitor the purchase pattern of the consumers. The brand analyses the customers on the basis of their involvement with the various Coca Cola brand products. Using surveys through online web-centric or email surveys Coca Cola also finds crucial information from the customer about their awareness of the products from this brand. Currently, the brand awareness of Coca Cola is high in its varied customer segments. The firm wishes to grow its market share gradually and also its share of customers through varied attractive product offers. Marketing campaigns help Coca Cola to reach out to its customers.
- b) Which competitors pose a threat?
The marketing activities of Coca Cola also help it get answers about the competition which is a threat for the firm. This is not just related to the company products but also the large scale company supply chain. Using critical marketing decision making Coca Cola strategically places itself amongst its competition. Through a competition analysis, the brand gathers information about their competition (Meg, 2018). Following are the identified competitors of Coca-cola:-
- Red Bull
- c) How the context of business is changing, if at all?
The Coca Cola business context is indeed changing. Macro-environmental factors such as political, social, economic, technological, environmental or legal aspects are analyzed. The political scenario has become risky in the whole world and this affects all business sectors. Brexit, US-China trade stress conditions and yellow vests are examples of geo political risks affecting Coca Cola.
- d) What role collaborators play in the process?
A crucial role is played by collaborators in the various marketing endeavors of the Coca Cola brand. Coca Cola, for example, works in a global environment and hence this exposes the firm to risks such as threats of intellectual property, patents or copyrights. Managing a large number of suppliers for the brand can be tedious and too fewer suppliers can be risky for the firm as well.
Coca Cola uses a marketing strategy so that it can ensure sustainable long term advantage and competitive advantages in the market. With the aid of a marketing strategy the idea is grown from a small seed and based on this the firm goes one step ahead of its different competition and enjoys an advanced level of profit margins as well. The long term effects of a good marketing strategy are stunning for a firm like Coca Cola.
1) Segmentation of the market- Segmenting the market is a marketing strategy firms like Coca Cola adopts for dividing its entire market on the basis of the purchaser capacities and volume and also by using suitable methodologies which can enhance their overall sale volumes and also earn products from each of these divided segments. This technique of marketing is applicable since Coca Cola is expanding in new markets and entering over 20 developed markets as well. In any emerging marketplace, the role of sales is much more than making a profit as it means catering to a vast quantity of new customers in the new markets. This creates a robust foundation for Coca Cola. The firm ensures that its beverage is offered at very economical rates so mass customers can make use of its benefits. In the developing marketplaces Coca Cola has achieved a great balance in its sales and price points. In such developed nations the firm introduced premium as well as small packages and enjoyed increased revenue by serving to premium customers.
- Customer relationship and brand creation- Development of good relationship with the customers and establishment of the customer are two crucial aspects of the Coca Cola Company marketing strategy development portfolio. All customers in this world trust branded products. They can even spend something extra if the product is branded. Coca Cola hence invests in promoting the brand as it aids in maintaining its status quo. Investments are made to create modern advertisements which are focusing on customers and their needs of a drink which is their life partner and that is Coca Cola. Such marketing promotions also enhance the position of Coca Cola in the energy drink industry as well. This is done by innovating healthy drinks for niche customers. Monster Beverage Corporation has partnered with Coca Cola and the latter has launched healthy juices such as Fairlife and Suja. This was promoted globally via international marketing campaigns by Coca Cola.
In the year 2016 Coca Cola launched the famous slogan – “Taste the feeling”. With this, the firm has emphasized how a tasty and refreshing beverage can serve to fitness-focused customers as well. The firm came up with varying drinks and eth drinks with varying caffeine content to serve different customer needs.
3) Enhancing financial competency- Coca Cola just like any other business aims in maximising the investments it makes with maximised productivity and to achieve this firm needs to promote it in new techniques. All these are based on a high level of financial efficiency. The firm makes savings apart from its investments which is again put back to make meaningful advertisement and promotional campaigns to connect with the customers (Sicilia & Palazón, 2018).
The brand Coca Cola is no doubt high in popularity. The business still has witnessed many ups and downs in the past to reach its high positioning in the market. The firm is recommended to embrace the following marketing mix in order to balance its marketing endeavors for better business stability and reach globally (Bhasin, 2019).
Product – Coca Cola is recommended to widen its portfolio range. The firm can subdivide its beverage products on the basis of diets such as tea, coffee, fruit juices, fruit beverages, water, etc. So far the brand has already showcased a very wide range of products. The firm is also recommended that it further shares its products to new markets with flavours as per the taste and preferences of different countries and culture. This will enhance the popularity of the brand in localized markets.
Price – Coca Cola is also recommended to undergo a pricing strategy based on geographical segment, product, and market in which it is catering. The strategy of pricing for Coca Cola can also be researched well and only after analysing the competition pricing the management must set the price of the products. The entire beverage marketing in the world is considered to be enjoying an oligopoly market where there are fewer vendors and more purchases. Hence the balance between pricing and vendors must be very well balanced.
Place – Coca Cola is one of the top brands in the world. The firm uses an FMCG pattern for the distribution of its entire range of products. In this method of product distribution the company is recommended to enter all kinds of new markets. The company explores the rural markets widely in order to erode and explore as much as possible. This will give Coca Cola a better position than its direct competitors.
Promotions – New age marketing and advertisement strategies must be developed by the company in order to fulfil the growing demands in the market. The brand can associate its products with lifestyle and customer behaviour and create value based advertisement campaigns and a localized approach to spread a positive message.
People- Coca Cola is recommended to focus more on its people. The entire equation of marketing is between the brand and its customers. The marketing mix recommended can involve more stakeholders like company shareholders, staff, suppliers, the general public, press, etc. Hence it is important to address the needs of all the people associated with the business. Coca Cola must place themselves as an experience rather than just a product.
Process- Coca Cola is recommended to further optimize its processes so the time between the product and the accessibility of the customer is further reduced. One cannot assume that just because the products available people will purchase it over the competition products. The business must focus more on store management, e-commerce business and new ways of ordering, etc.
Physical Evidence- Everything which the customer watches before making a purchase covers the physical evidence for a brand. Coca Cola is recommended to modernize its themes and focus on designing, packaging, labelling, graphic content and designs to attract customers of all age and segments.
Change is inevitable to all business. This is reflected in marketing techniques as well. Using the above 5Cs analysis and 7Ps of marketing mix Coca Cola will indeed be at a more advantageous position in the market. A global brand like Coca Cola must use more technologies and advanced processes in order to adapt to external changes.
Bhasin, H. (2019). Marketing mix of Coca Cola – 4 P’s of Coca cola – Coca cola 4 Ps explained. Retrieved from https://www.marketing91.com/marketing-mix-coca-cola/
Jones, P., & Comfort, D. (2018). The Coca Cola Brand and Sustainability. Indonesian Journal Of Applied Business And Economic Research, 1(1), 34-46.
Meg. (2018). How to conduct a competitor analysis. Retrieved from https://www.talkwalker.com/blog/conduct-competitor-analysis#Conclusion
Mooij, M. (2018). Global Marketing Advertising (3rd ed., pp. 4-7). Los Angeles: SAGE.
Steenkamp, J. (2017). The future of the marketing department at business schools. Journal Of The Academy Of Marketing Science, 46(2), 169-172. doi: 10.1007/s11747-017-0562-5
Sinha, M., & Sheth, J. (2018). Growing the pie in emerging markets: Marketing strategies for increasing the ratio of non-users to users. Journal Of Business Research, 86(75), 217-224. doi: 10.1016/j.jbusres.2017.05.007
Sicilia, M., & Palazón, M. (2018). Brand communities on the internet. Corporate Communications: An International Journal, 13(3), 255-270. doi: 10.1108/13563280810893643
White, W. (2018). Coca-Cola Marketing Strategy: Recipe for Success. Retrieved from http://inevitablesteps.com/marketing/coca-cola-marketing-strategy/