Zara Company is a famous accessories and clothing retailer. This company requires a marketing plan to overcome weaknesses and reinforce its strengths. This marketing plan consists of the following parts: Market Analysis, Environmental Analysis, Marketing Goals and Strategies, Monitoring and Control. The unity of the components is the basement for the creation of the marketing plan. Market Analysis presupposes SWOT analysis, products and services overview and customer perspective. Environmental Analysis includes macro-environmental and micro-environmental factors. Marketing goals and strategies are based on the short-term and long-term perspectives. Moreover, this paper has also control and monitoring plan and its implementation in practice. Key Words: marketing plan, goals, strategies, long-term, short-term, implementation, SWOT-analysis.
The marketing plan is an essential component of the business activity of any company. It includes aspects of the environmental analysis, marketing analysis, marketing goals, strategies, control and monitoring. For such a successful organization as Zara Company, a marketing plan is necessary in order to determine future ways of development and predict possible threats. Moreover, a proper marketing plan can suggest the ways of increasing company’s productivity and productivity of its employees. The marketing plan is also the basement for achieving a competitive advantage and for implementation of the necessary business strategy. This paper proposes a marketing plan of Zara Company, conducts marketing and environmental analysis, determines marketing strategies and control aspects.
Product strategy is one of the key aspects of a marketing analysis. It defines the profits and sales of a company. Zara Company specializes in clothes and accessories and thus, its main competitors are other companies of the same specialization, such as H&M, Reserved, Stradivarius, and Mango. Zara diversifies their products by adding national features to their products and attracting the customers from all over the world. The company has an individual approach to every customer and provides a paper or plastic recycling handbag. According to the product strategy, Zara stores can be divided into following categories: Shoes, Cosmetics and Complements, Children's Clothing, Upper Garment and Lower Garment. This company utilizes toxic-free production methods. As a result, it is popular with the customers (About Zara, 2015).
- Efficient distribution of products and services.
- Being one of the largest international retailers.
- Leadership strategy accompanied with a proper business strategy.
- Many stores worldwide.
- Fast adaptation to fashion trends and products.
- The products of the company are trendy and affordable to many customers.
- Positive brand image.
Such strengths of Zara Company prove a good organizational reputation and predict the future perspectives of growth. Moreover, these strong sides enable Zara to meet customers' interests and demands.
- Not a perfect promotion strategy.
- Following luxury brand policy.
- Single manufacturing and distribution establishment.
- Poor control over the production.
- Centralized distribution model.
- Low quality of some products.
Such weaknesses should not be the restraining forces of growth. Consequently, Zara Company should use them as the driving forces for the development. Change of management process and innovation will help overcoming these weaknesses. Moreover, these weak points prove that Zara should meet more customers' needs in order to avoid their harmful impact on company’s image and reputation. Although, it should be mentioned that such weaknesses are typical for other similar companies.
- Development of online marketing and shopping.
- Presence at other markets.
- Global market penetration.
- Creation of an organic clothing line.
- A distribution center in the USA.
- Collaboration with luxury designers.
The opportunities prove that Zara Company has many possibilities for improvement through the modernization and worldwide integration. Moreover, these opportunities serve customers' needs and demands as they presuppose the extension of the promotion and product strategies. However, the main objective is to turn all these opportunities into the short-term strategies. Zara Company has the many opportunities which it should not omit them.
- Local and global competitors. The main competitors of Zara Company are H&M, Reserved, Stradivarius and Mango.
- No typical customers. Zara Company needs segmentation of the customers.
- An always changing street style that demands a quick adaptation.
- Rising labor costs in Asia.
- Possible lawsuits.
The threats are related to customers' needs, world orientation on fashion and customers. These threats are connected with long-term perspectives of the company. However, the company should react on them immediately byreconstructing its marketing strategy and reevaluating profitability.
The target market of Zara Company includes consumers of all genders, ages, and interests. The most active consumers of this organization are teenagers and young people who change their style very often and choose the latest clothes and accessories. Zara Company should put the customer perspective in the center of the marketing strategy. Consumers of Zara Company’s product consist of both single and married people. Zara stores are the places entertainment for families and children. The majority of current consumers are from Europe. However, Zara intends to attract customers from Asia and the USA. Zara satisfies customers' needs by offering them not only clothes but also shoes, handbags, and accessories. Online shopping allows customers to shop without going to the retail stores. The customers choose the Zara products because they are fashionable and high-quality.
Macro-environmental factors of Zara Company are of political, sociocultural, economic, technological, legal and environmental nature. Political factors of this company are the obligation of paying taxes and any other legal regulations. Moreover, political issues refer to the mitigation of foreign taxes as the company operates internationally. Health and safety laws and regulations should be adhered to in order to avoid fines and to respond to the governmental demands.
Economic aspects of Zara Company are related to the customer perspective and economic processes in the market. The buying power of customers determines sales and profits of a company. Inflation, unemployment and exchange rates are the economic indicators that influence the state of company’s affairs. The global crisis caused the recent recession which made Zara product more expensive.
Sociocultural factors include the possible demographic issues like population ageing and decline in customer base that also influences the company. Moreover, demographic issues can lead to a decrease in the demand for Zara items, which in turn decreases its sales and profits. Another sociocultural issue refers to the customers' concerns about luxury brands. Other concerns of the customers are related to the quality of services. Consequently, Zara Company should take care of their customers’ concerns. Technological factors are connected with the company’s aim to be modern. Rapid changes in technology can drive Zara to further growth. It is very important for Zara Company to use the innovative ways of manufacturing and design. Moreover, the organization should improve the quality of the payment operations by implementing innovative technologies. Online advertising is one of the good ways of increasing the customer base.
Legal factors also influence the macro-environment of Zara Company. The company must adhere to the governmental regulations and laws and pay taxes. In addition, legal factors demand the promotion of the diversity and equality policy among employees. Zara Company can be held responsible for the racial or any other kind of discrimination. Environmental factors are of no less importance as they are related to creating a positive image and to promotion of the ecological policy. To address these factors, Zara Company claims to have a toxic-free manufacturing process.
Competition, the power of buyers, supplier power, a threat of substitute products and a threat of new entrants are also the essential components of a marketing plan. Consequently, they should be taken into consideration. The competitive rivalry is high ,especially among those companies that manufacture clothing items and accessories. Zara Company is a reputable company but its competitive rivalry can be threatened. The power of buyers is another significant for the company micro-environmental factor. One should say that customers can drive the organization as well as restrain it. The competitive pressure of the customers refers to their increasing needs and demands. As a result, it is important for Zara to take into consideration customers' interests and tastes when producing new items.
Zara Company depends on the supplier power as this organization relies on many different channels of supply. In order to remain successful and competitive, Zara should carefully choose their suppliers. Manufacturing of any item requires high-quality materials.. Threat of substitutes is a driving force of this organization. Firstly, there are many companies specializing in clothing. Secondly, the new organizations are constantly emerging, suggesting their visions of marketing. H&M, Mango, Stradivarius, S. Oliver are specializing in similar products and services forcing Zara Company to be innovating and to modernize their items. One should say that the threat of substitutes is on par with the buyer demand.
Another micro-environmental factor that makes Zara Company be on alert is the threat of new entrants. The number of new entrants is high as clothes and accessories are popular among customers and they constantly require new pieces of clothing. However, success of the new entrants is never immediate due to the lack of competencies, resources and experience.
Marketing Goals and Strategies
Marketing goals and objectives of Zara Company refer to the increasing the number of markets in which the company operates to include the USA and Asian markets. The marketing strategy of Zara Company presupposes needs-based segmentation into following groups: demographic (age, gender), socio-cultural (ethnic aspects), psychographic (quality sensitivity and price sensitivity) and geographic (orientation to the national preferences of consumers). Another marketing goal of Zara Company is the implementation of the future development plans. To define an appropriate development plan for this organization one should conduct an environmental and organizational analysis. The marketing objective of Zara Company is to increase the market penetration. The short-term goals of Zara are to provide needs-based segmentation and collaboration with the luxurious designers in order to have a competitive advantage. The long-term goals of Zara include creating future development plans and overcoming weaknesses related to the quality of their products.
The financial success of Zara Company is determined by its sales and profits. Consequently, marketing plan should include long-term and short-term goals for Zara. The long-term financial goals of this company presuppose increasing by expanding manufacturing volumes and by attracting more customers. Moreover, the long-term goals include increasing the revenue earned from the provision of services and sales of products.
The marketing mix should also be included in the marketing plan. The marketing mix includes product strategy, pricing strategy, distribution and promotion strategy. These strategies are important for Zara Company
Zara Company pays a lot of attention to product strategy. Zara Company adapts its product strategy to the demand of the foreign markets. For example, they add national features to the clothes and accessories for certain markets. The variety of their products is changing in accordance to the fashionable tendencies. Shoes, cosmetics, clothes and accessories are the key groups of products.
The pricing strategy of Zara Company is reasonable and adapts to the customers' demands. This brands occupies neither luxury nor mass market. Consequently, their prices are neither very expensive nor cheap.
An effective advertisement campaign is a way of increasing revenue, attracting clients, and promoting the image of Zara Company. It should be noted that promotion strategy is a weakness of this organization. The advertisement is aimed at attracting new customers, and at demonstrating the dominance in the market through the sharp issues of the community. Optimistic, bright, and cheerful pictures of the company`s advertisements increase customer awareness of this brand. Clips, messages, and colorful pictures are used to raise sales, increase profits and brand loyalty. By utilizing this advertisement campaign, Zara creates an emotional bond with the audience.
Zara Company gives customers a choice to buy clothes either at stores or online. Zara uses many channels of distribution to increase its market share and revenues. Channels of distribution influence the long-term commitment, other marketing decisions, supply and demand. Involvement of distribution channels involves risk taking, financing, physical distribution, negotiation, matching, contact, promotion, and information. First of all, this company uses physical distribution that deals with logisticts. E-commerce is a more innovative distribution channel used by Zara Company.
Monitor and Control
Zara Company uses BI system and Balanced Scorecard to record and report progress towards its goals. The total estimated initial investment in the franchise is $970,195. Enforcement is done according to the legal regulations and requirements. The main policies of Zara Company are finding the appropriate locations for new stores and hiring and training the personnel with accordance to the standards of the company. Monitoring of Zara performance is done by using the innovative technologies and management information systems. Accountability is done not only for the personal reasons but to comply with the legal regulations. Technologies should be applied for all operations and processes to make them more efficient. The most important objectives of Zara are studying the market of the restaurant business and investigating the current tendencies in the clothing industry in the USA and China; investigating the franchise cooperation and its requirements; and finding the appropriate location for a restaurant, taking into consideration local competition, potential demand and the target audience.
Zara uses SWOT analysis, 5 Porter's analysis, and management information systems like Business Intelligence in order to monitor the marketing audit. The managers and HR managers should be responsible for evaluation and control of the marketing policy in Zara Company.
A marketing plan for Zara Company is necessary because it reveals the peculiarities, weaknesses, strengths and possibilities of the company. Market analysis has shown that Zara has many driving forces that make it modernized, innovate and different from its competitors. Environmental analysis has showed that the company depends on the legal, political, environmental, economic, sociocultural and environmental factors. The company should use them as its driving forces. Zara has short-term and long-term marketing strategies that help the company in prioritizing and achieving constant growth. Marketing of Zara is aimed at providing the customers with the necessary products and services as well as establishing the relationship with entertainment providers, who are also very important for the company. The marketing strategy of Zara provides identification of customers' interests and demands. Raising brand awareness is ensured through marketing, advertisement, and public relations campaigns.
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