This paper is a case study of McDonald’s to elucidate how the firm has used the various marketing concepts such as the marketing mix dubbed 4Ps as well as identify the firm’s processes which contribute to the marketing strategy that has seen it grow its market share.
Marketing in business refers the activity, a series of guidelines, and processes for the generation, communication, delivery, or exchange of offerings that result in value addition for clienteles, customers, stakeholders, and the vast community. The old perception of marketing entailed merely a tell-and-sell venture but the modern perception inculcated the value of satisfaction of customers’ needs (Lesson Week1, 9). Marketing is a multifaceted process which entails a set of undertakings which include the following; comprehending the market of the products as well as the needs and wants of the clients, development of a customer-oriented strategy, construction of integrated production programs which result in superior products, creation and maintenance of profitable relationships by cultivating customer satisfaction, and capturing value from clients as to build both profits and quality for customers. This paper is a case study of McDonald’s to elucidate how the firm has used the various marketing concepts such as the marketing mix dubbed 4Ps as well identify the firm’s processes which contribute to the marketing strategy that has seen it grow its market share.
In a successful marketing strategy, the needs and wants of the customers must be well understood as they are used to create demand which requires fulfillment by a marketing offering products, services, and experiences to the clients. The offered product should be able to perform as per the customers’ expectation which is best described as client value and satisfaction. When that is done, a firm earns the customers’ loyalty. A good marketing management knows the target market and knows the value proposition and uses the marketing mix abbreviated 4Ps which are the product, price, place, and promotion (Lesson Week1, 17). A customer-centered marketing stratagem ensures that a firm segments or subdivides its market according to the appropriate programs develop a target group, differentiates the market value, and positioning itself in the market as to achieve competitive advantage over other service or product providers in the market.
McDonald’s is a global giant in the fast-food industry and is currently a multi-business firm; dealing in fast-foods and coffee. It is amongst the earliest ventures in its niche as it was founded in 1945 as a hamburger dinner, and is currently registered in the stock markets with the SIC code MCD. McDonald’s has a distinctively set mission and vision that guides it in the quest to achieve the key goals. The firm’s brand mission underscores its quest to be the favorite place and way of dining (“ McDonald’s,” n.d.). The firm’s vision is to be the pinnacle fast-food diner experience at any point in the globe.
The vision is interpreted as an intention to offer an outstanding worth, service, quality, and sanitation so that they can wholesomely satisfy their customers. Alongside the mission and vision, McDonald’s sets its major goals towards ensuring that they realize their vision and mission efficiently (“McDonald’s,” n.d.). The goals are; consideration of customer experience in all their operations, committing itself to its people, laying their full belief on the McDonald’s system, undertaking their corporate operations in an ethical manner, ensuring that they give back to the community, achieving sustainability, pursuing a profitable business progress as well as determinedly striving for improvement.
McDonald’s products and services are fast-foods and drinks such as snacks, beef, burgers, chicken, fish, coffee among the very many fast-food and drinks. McDonald’s promotional campaigns insist on a product safety, of high-quality, and choice in the market. Essentially, their major promotions and campaigns are about how their products are made, processed, and accessed by their customers (“Current Promotions,” n.d.). First off, they have a clear production profile of responsible sourcing strategy which underscores its choice of high-quality and natural raw materials which are aimed at the achievement of sustainability for the ecosystem as well as their business coined in their promotion as the 3E’s which are ethical, environmental, and economical centered (“McDonald’s,” n.d.). McDonald’s has a set of promotions on the packaging that supports the sustainability since they are environmentally friendly. Its employees, partners, merchants, suppliers, and any other person involved in their business are required to be in tandem with their sustainability goals.
McDonald’s products are well marketed and promoted in the foodservice industry. Its marketing strategies can be categorized into two distinct models; business-level strategy dealing with the customers and suppliers, and corporate-level strategy dealing with operations which are an incorporation of the 4Ps marketing strategy (TMKT101 –Wk2(1), 14). McDonald’s astounding capacity and growth can be ascribed to their good analysis of the market, comprehension of their distinctive strengths, segmentation of their target markets, and comprehension of the market demands (Senker 2016, 6). As opposed to the other companies which use 4Ps, McDonald’s uses an exceptional model which is dubbed 5Ps which are product, place, price, promotion, and people, the last factor being their added one.
Product refers to the tangible products or the actual services offered by the firm to its customers. Product entails the designing and manufacturing of products with a view to enhance the experience of its clients (TMKT101 –Wk1, 17). For McDonald’s, this is the cornerstone in determining its brand and image. McDonald’s incorporates certain aspects of the products and services it offers such as packaging, appearance, and attractiveness; both physical and non-tangible features. McDonald’s limits the depth and width of its services and products with intent. The firm studies the mannerisms of its customers and offers specific products which are different from those it offers in other parts and a perfect example is its Indian market where with the knowledge that most clients are vegetarians, McDonald’s provided this kind of menus. It continually enhances its products and services in line with the dynamic tastes and needs of the customers (“McDonald’s,” n.d.). Such was the case in the introduction of the two chicken products of Maharaja and McNuggets.
This refers the locality for distribution and channels of operation of the business which enables easy access to products and services at the apt time, venues, and qualitative preferences (TMKT101 –Wk1, 17). The main places upon which McDonald uses for distribution are restaurants, kiosks, and various digital platforms such as mobile applications. Restaurants are the main generators of McDonald’s sales revenue and a number of the restaurants further run food kiosks that offer selected products as the sundae. Some of these food kiosks are transitory as in cases of those erected in competition arenas and seasonal events places. The digital platforms are virtual shops where customers can remotely access McDonald’s products and buy them. An example of the digital platforms is mobile apps which enable clients to get special offers, look for the location of restaurants, and make online orders and payments (Senker 2016, 8). This feature enables consumers to access their products anywhere on the globe. In terms of time, McDonald’s makes appropriate location decisions for example, in the US, their outlets are 3 minutes apart.
When it comes to marketing, one vital aspect is the pricing stratagem. This stratagem should cover price breakdowns, special offers or discounts, and payments. McDonald’s make such decisions with consideration of possible reactions from the competitors (TMKT101 –Wk1, 17). The corporation has established an appropriate pricing stratagem that attracts middle and low-class earners which have earned it a strong customer based within this reach. In particular, McDonald’s employs two pricing stratagems; bundle and psychological pricing. Bundle pricing stratagems entail offering products at a discounted price as opposed to the price of separate items. Examples of this pricing are combo feasts, family meals, and happy feasts. The Psychological pricing entails the use of seemingly cheaper or affordable prices such as $99 instead of $100 which creates an affordability perception in the consumers’ minds (Senker 2016, 8). These stratagems are aimed at improvement of overall sales and profits of the products and promotion of the brand.
This aspect refers to the marketing ploys used by a business to contact, interact, and make any form of communication with the potential consumers. This aspect centers on marketing communication with the potential consumers such as new information to convince clients to buy newly introduced products (Lecture Notes –Week1(1), 17). McDonalds four ploys to achieve its promotional goals and they include advertising, sales promotion, civic relation, and direct marketing. Advertisements used in McDonald’s include those in television and radio adverts, newspapers and other print media, billboards, and online platforms (“Current Promotions,” n.d.). Sales promotion seeks to attract more clients into the corporation’s diners such as special offers as discounts on some products and combination of products like coupons and freebies.
McDonald’s civic or public relations endeavors aid in the promotion of business on the market by good-will and boosting its brand. Such endeavors as charity activities or global environmental protection programs help to support societies at the same time strengthening the value of McDonald’s products (Senker 2016, 9). In some occasions, the corporation employs direct marketing techniques which include making vocal business appearances to customers, local authorities, sports events, societal parties, and events and where the company to client selling and promotion of the products is done. It should be noted that McDonald’s usually uses advertising as the main strategy in its promotion of products to their consumers since it can easily reach a great number of people simultaneously.
Ostentatiously standing out in McDonald’s marketing strategies is the element of people. This encompasses customers and employees of the corporation. This is in appreciation of the pertinence of people in any business environment. McDonald’s employees are motivated and happy and thus they will serve clients in a proper manner and hence earning the corporation contended clients (Senker 2016, 9-10). In addition, McDonald’s diners frequently conduct internal marketing, an efficient strategy which commonly leads to the effective external marketing of their products. Internal marketing entails employing, training, and encouraging workers. Similarly, it works since employee appreciation of their products motivates outsiders that the products are valuable. McDonald’s slogan of “I’m loving it” is geared at showing that workers at the corporation not only enjoy serving their customers but they also love their work (“Current Promotions,” n.d.).
Evaluation of marketing promotions/campaigns
From a business point of view, it is apparent that McDonald’s promotional campaigns are bearing fruits since the company in the past few years has expanded its reach across the globe, retailing in over 33,000 diners (“McDonald’s,” n.d.). It has become a household name even outside the US by dominating the fast-food industry. It has achieved this by delivery of an outstanding consumer experience while establishing appropriate local menus and services. It has achieved both globalization and internationalization by developing some products which are standard everywhere and customization of products to fit socio-cultural and other geographical differences respectively. Internationalization of products like the Indian Maharaja chicken is a common strategy by McDonald’s which has earned it acceptance in the particular environment as consumers appreciate its sensitivity to the socio-cultural differences.
Promotion strategies of McDonald’s are but a success since targeting specific groups of people like children in East Asia who the corporate ascribes its success to within that locality (TMKT101 – Wk3 Pt2, 7 & 10). Civic or public relations activities which McDonald’s has engaged itself to have helped it in generating a positive public image for the brand and firm (Senker 2016, 9). A successful example of this strategy is sponsorship of the various sporting activities around the globe which has enhanced its brand in relation to already appreciated sporting associations. Similarly, its position on environmental protection has earned it many customers since with the emergence of lifestyle diseases; people appreciate a natural environment aside from the use of natural raw materials for production processes.
However, McDonald’s marketing strategy has not been without failures. One major problem it has faced in entry into new markets is language barrier where certain words or terms for use in its products may not be understood or misunderstood for another thing which has made it accrue loses. McDonald’s has also faced strong competition from upcoming companies which come with advanced products on the market. Pricing strategies also have failed in some places which sometimes causes the company to retreat on its expansion agenda. In some countries where taxes rises dynamically, McDonald’s have had to increase food and drinks prices which have ended up reducing its number of customers. Furthermore, there has been a growing health consciousness which has made people in some markets decline on fast-foods. To solve the language barrier issues, McDonald’s should increase the number of local employees in managerial positions at their localities. The health issue could be improved by public sensitization.