The potential customers

As part of my research it was important to get the opinions and views of the potential customers. To do this I did some field research by going into York centre and asking 34 people a number of questions. These people differed in age and gender so I could get a fair range of results. Most people had said that they preferred shops that had top quality products even if the price was a bit more. This helped confirm my thoughts to make this part of the business strategy. This is also what our competitors do so I would not gain much competitive advantage but would ensure I could make profits even if I reduced the prices slightly.

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My research showed that 11% of the people surveyed said that American Football was their favourite sport and 32% mentioned it as one they were interested in. When I looked in “JJB” there were no American Football garments in the shop. This will be used to our advantage. Our research and analysis pie charts helped me decide exactly where to lease a shop. It is obvious that most people would want us to be located around the Coppergate area as it is convenient, near the car park and has other shops which attract passing trade. This will now be part of the plan that I am going to do although the rent costs will be slightly higher than other areas but we will be able to make more money with higher sales and high margins on American Football gear.

I think that this primary research was very successful and a lot better than desk research. Mintel Report A Mintel report is a type of desk research where information is gathered about other companies and how much money is made, what most consumers like to buy etc. In figure 10, page 22 it confirms the most popular sports wear bought are shoes. Our company will sell a good range of shoes so we can hopefully make more revenue by selling high volumes. It is important to know what customers want otherwise the stock will just stay on the shelves and we will not make any profit.

In figure 14 page 27 I can see that 25% of customers have said that they like to shop in local independent shops. This is good for my company as we would be local and independent. 19% of people have said that they prefer shopping at our main rival, JJB sports. This was based on adults, which is our target audience is mainly. JJB sports makes 35% of their turnover from other types of clothing which does not include replica shirts. Although our company will stock a few of these items, I think that most of the customers will shop at JJB sports for items such as these which is OK as it is taken into consideration in our plan. The Mintel report is very important for companies such as mine to find out exactly what is selling well and what is not.

According to this report, local sports shops mainly focus their target audience at young adults but mainly men. Our target audience will be slightly wider and will focus on older people as well. 28% of men regularly visit sports shops whereas 22% of women also shop in sports shops regularly. My target audience would include women as well because my company cannot afford to ignore with such a large number of customers i.e. 22% of women. When I asked in my questionnaire what attracted people to shop in certain shops, I got a number of comments. The most significant of these were good quality items and at a good price. The Mintel report showed the following top two reasons

1. 44% of people said they wanted durable and high quality products 2. 32% said they wanted to have brand names in their shops. The Mintel report is done on a much larger scale than my questionnaire so I can take these results as relatively accurate and represent a good sample which would more closely represent what the general public thought. However, it does not state how many people were included in the report or where this questionnaire has taken place; it could have been in an out of town shopping centre or spread across the country. The top two things that attract customer are what we should include in my plans and objectives. Overall I think that this report is very useful and important to my company as it confirms what I have been thinking and is good desk research.

Advertising Introduction Advertising is one part of a business’s promotional mix, and thus advertising objectives will be set in line with overall Promotional and Marketing Objectives, which in turn will relate to the organisations’ Corporate Objectives. We can, however, offer general categories of possible objectives a business might set itself in terms of whether it seeks to Inform, Persuade or Remind the target audience. Advertising Objectives Informs Informative advertising, seeks to tell the market about the product, explain how the product works, provide information on pricing, and build awareness of both the product and the company. Such objectives are normally pursued at the launch of a new product, or re-launch / up-date of an existing product e.g. to inform customers about our American Football sports wear.

Persuade Here the objectives are to encourage the target audience to switch brands, make the purchase, and create a preference in the market for the product as opposed to the competition. Advertising of this nature is required in highly competitive markets, where ranges of product compete directly. In such circumstances businesses often seek to differentiate their product through Comparison Advertising – either directly or indirectly comparing its product to that of its competitors.

Remind Reminder Advertising is used to maintain interest and awareness of a well established product in the market, often in the latter stages of its product life cycle when sales are declining. Such advertising is used by the likes of Coca-Cola and other leading brands. JJB sport do this a lot in their TV advertising Advertising Strategy Developing an Advertising Strategy to achieve the objectives of a campaign requires consideration to be given to both the ‘Message’ which will be communicated and the ‘Media’ through which it will be sent. In addition it needs to be at the right Time e.g. just at the beginning of a sports championship such as when England are about to play in the World Cup. I will now look at the Message and Media in more detail.

Advertising Message In an advertising campaign, no matter how much money is spent, no matter what media is used, it will only be successful if the Message appeals to the target audience. Given the level of advertising which bombards the average consumer, a successful advertising message must stand out amongst the advertising clutter, be memorable and encourage people to want the product and go and get it. Thus marketing professionals are required to be creative, imaginative and innovative in developing the advertising message, both in terms of ‘What is said’, and ‘How it is said’. What is said This is often referred to as the ‘Big Idea’, and will normally address the key benefits sought by the target audience, motivating the audience to pay attention. Given the constant search for new ways to appeal to target audiences, it is difficult to categorise the content of advertising messages which a business may send, below I have included three examples of actual message strategy. Examples of ‘What is said’ Gillette: The best a man can get Is an example of a message which draws attention to the brand’s position as the market leader, reminding and reassuring the audience, we all like to think we have the ‘best’.

Reebok: Trying to loose your belly Is an example of a business emphasising the functional benefit that motivates the purchase of the product in the target audience. Fitness, health and a toned body is very appealing to most people. Sony Play Station 2: Its out there Seeks to differentiate the product from both the competition, and previous version of the Play Station 2, whilst also generating awareness and interest in the new product. How it is said Our last example of the Sony Play Station 2 campaign, also underlines the fact that how things are said, is often just as important as what is said. Creating attention grabbing and memorable advertising is increasingly vital, given the amount of advertising clutter in the marketplace and high cost. As with message content, advertising is constantly generating new styles of advertising, to achieve this Sony recruited the services of David Lynch, a film director whose credits include ‘Twin Peaks’. Below we include examples of some of the more established message styles.