Name:Mohamed Saad Abdul Cader
Student No:SID 8308
Module Name:Strategic Brand Management
Study Centre:Strategy –Sri Lanka
TABLE OF CONTENT
TASK ONE (Words 1274)
1.1Brand Audit for Coca Cola2
1.2 Brand Association and Brand Awareness of Coca Cola4
1.3 Critical Evaluation of the current status of the brand and the challenges faced by Coca Cola at present4
TASK TWO (Words 1358)
2.1 Brand Planning6
2.2 Strategic Recommendation7
2.3 Designing of Marketing Mix9
To: Marketing Manager
From: Mohamed Saad Cader – Brand Manager
Subject: Brand Plan for Coca Cola
1.1 Brand Audit for Coca Cola
Owner of the Brand – Coca Cola Incorporation is the owner of the Coca Cola brand, head quartered in USA
History of the Brand – Coca Cola brand was first introduced in 1886 by a pharmacist named Dr. John S. Pemberton. This original recipe for Coca Cola was initially sold a patent medicines in soda fountain stores claiming that it would be a remedy for ailments which includes nausea, heartburns and headaches. The bookkeeper of Dr. Pemberton designed the logo and named the beverage as “Coca Cola”.
Prior to Pemberton’s death he sold the business to an Atlanta businessman named Candler and by 1889 Candler acquired the rights for both the formula and the Coca Cola name and the brand. He incorporated Coca Cola company in 1892 expanding the distribution of Coca Cola syrup concentrates to soda fountains beyond Atlanta. Moreover, Candler promoted the drink through giving free drink vouchers and also outfitting pharmacies and soda fountains with items carrying Coca Cola branding.
The marketing promotions carried out resulted in a significant increase in demand. In 1894 a businessman in Mississippi began bottling the beverage in order to make t portable. By 1895 Candler built bottling plants in multiple cities to deal with the increasing demand. CITATION Mah09 l 1033 (Sagar, 2009)With the beverage gaining popularity in the bottle form, many counterfeits were produced. This compelled Coca Cola to invest in advertising to urge the public to demand the genuine. As a result, in 1916 the first contour bottle was manufactured allowing Coca Cola to distinguish its products from the imitations.
In 1919 Coca Cola Company was sold to a group of investors and as a result the company was expanded talking Coca Cola brand and beverage to the rest of the world.
Coca Cola started distributing bottles as “six packs”, encouraging customers to purchase the beverage for their homes as well.
In 1928 Coca cola was introduced as a sponsor for Olympic Games, allowing the company to gain high level international exposure which has continued up to present.
Products offered under the brand – The product portfolio offered by Coca Cola includes over 500 beverage brands, inclusive of 3,500 beverages. These range from regular, low and no calorie sparkling beverages to still beverages such as 100% fruit drinks and fruit juices, sports ; energy drinks, water, teas, coffee and milk and soy-based beverages. CITATION Sau08 l 1033 (Aggarwal, 2008)Position of the brand- Initially the brand was positioned as a patent medicine which can be used as a cure for headache. However, since year 2014 the positioning has changed and has been focused on “live on the coke side of life”, refreshing the world and quenching thirst, cultural values, family, friends, every day life’s joys, open happiness and consistency & high quality. Main highlight of the approach is “think global, act local” approach
Brand Elements – Coca Cola name with the unique letters and the colour, Coca Cola Logo, the contour bottle, the unique taste
Distribution – Within Coca Cola’s distribution strategy bottling partners play a significant role. Company produces the beverage bases, concentrates and syrups and sells to the bottling partners and they manufacture, package and distribute the final product to the vending partners and customer who then again sell the beverage to the consumers. CITATION Ran09 l 1033 (Verma, 2009)Competitors – Direct competitors are Pepsi, Red Bull, Diet Coke/ Diet Pepsi, Fanta, Gatorade, Dr. Pepper, Mountain Dew. Lipton, Nescafe and Tropicana can be identified as the indirect competitors
Approximate value of the brand – The brand value of Coca Cola in 2018 amounts to 79.96 US Dollar Billion.
1.2 Brand Association and Brand Awareness of Coca Cola
Brand association and brand awareness play a significant role in creating strong brand recall in the mind of the customers. Being well aware of this Coca Cola has invested heavily on creating brand awareness and brand association though effective utilization of many modes.
During the initial stage Candler used a coupon system which enabled customers to get free drinks through which created a strong word of mouth popularity for the brand. This contributed effectively in creating the initial brand awareness and association inspiring the customers to try the product. CITATION Kev09 l 1033 (Keller, 2009)Subsequently the brand promotion has been carried out through both conventional and non-conventional advertising which include TV advertising, large display units, magazine advertising, pennants etc. Moreover, Coca Cola has invested heavily in community events, sponsoring the events and also offering free drinks at the events creating an emotional link with the customers. One of the major highlights of the brand promotion activities of the company is sponsoring sports events which are local as well as international which includes massive international events such as the Olympic. Unless and otherwise for the successful brand association and awareness, Coca Cola would never be able to become the global carbonated beverage giant possessing unmatched customer appeal and loyalty.
1.3 Critical Evaluation of the current status of the brand and the challenges faced by Coca Cola at present
Being the world’s largest carbonated beverage manufacturer with extensive presence in more than 200 countries in the world Coca Cola brand and the product holds undisputed customer loyalty and appeal given the consistency in quality and taste in all locations in which it operates and the emotional link that the brand crates with the customer life events.
Coca Cola’s position in the global market remains stable and strong yet the company operates in an extensively competitive business environment where the competition from Pepsi is increasing at a rapid rate. In addition to being profitable and driving business expansion, at present Coca Cola is intensely focused towards building a sustainable community through introduction of initiatives to reduce their environmental foot print, support active and healthy living, create safe and inclusive work environment and also enhance economic development of the communities in which the company operates. CITATION UCM10 l 1033 (Mathur, 2010)Furthermore, it is evident that the sales revenue generated by the brand especially the carbonated beverage portfolio has experienced a sharp drop mainly due to the rapid consumer shift towards healthy consumption patterns.
Amidst the circumstances it should be highlighted that Coca Cola stands strong in the global context withstanding the increasing competition and at the same time investing a considerable amount of money and efforts in new product developments to create business benefits from the emerging trends in consumer preference.
Further to the above, following can be identified as the main challenges faced by Coca Cola brand and the product; CITATION Har061 l 1033 (Verma, 2006)Being well aware of the sugar and calorie levels of Coca Cola and the other carbonated beverages, consumers are increasingly shifting towards healthy beverage types such as fruit drinks and fruit juices. This has resulted in a considerable drop in sales revenue for the company
Another main challenge is company’s inability to find an alternate sweater to be used in its beverage formula in place of sugar which is natural, safe and contains low or no calories.
Scarcity of water and poor quality of the available water- In Coca Cola’s production process water is a main ingredient. At the same time water is a limited resource in many parts of the world. In many instances Coca Cola has been brought to the lime light due to its large volume of water consumption. With the increase in demand for water it is also visible that the quality of the water declines which will increase production cost for the company.
Increasing cost of energy – Coca Cola’s logistics operation involves a large number of trucks and also the production process involves large consumption of electricity, gas and other energy sources. With the increasing cost of energy, it is unavoidable that cost of production would increase shrinking the profit margins. CITATION Kel08 l 1033 (Keller, 2008)TASK TWO
2.1 Brand Planning
Brand planning is seldom an overnight activity, hence requires both time and energy of the brad management team of the company.
The most essential elements in an effective brand planning process involves the following;
Marked Research – Market research is a prima facie element in brand planning mainly to identify where the brand stands in relation to the competitor brands in the market. This can be carried out either through obtaining the services of a professional market researcher or through interviewing the customers.
Target market – Branding requires clear identification of the target market. This is mainly because the modes that the company should use to create brand association and brand awareness widely vary depending on the type of the target customers.
Positioning – This refers to developing a perception amongst the customers on the brand. In order to drive a positive perception, it is a must that a clear marketing message be communicated to the customers. CITATION Kev13 l 1033 (Keller, 2013)Competitive analysis- Identify who the competitors are and how they are competing against the company and its product/ brand. Creating an in-depth knowledge on the competitors through an effective competitor analysis would enable the company to stand out from the competition
Market strategy – Market strategy is the key to driving brand. Company should create a closer look at the entire marketplace and identify specific tactics to create awareness and association with the brand amongst the customers.
Budget – Developing a budget is part and parcel of an effective branding plan. A month by month schedule should be developed to spend on branding, whilst keeping a track on any areas which create over spending.
Metrics- The branding success should be analyzed using either Google Analytics or through simple excel formula to elevate the actual ROI against the budget.
2.2 Strategic Recommendation
center10160Brand Equity Pyramid
00Brand Equity Pyramid
Many of the challenges faced by Coca Cola could be sorted by implementation of actions in line with the brand resonance pyramid identified above.
Brand resonance is driven through the strong connections between the consumer and the brand. Those brands which carry strong brand resonance benefit due to the increased customer loyalty and the decreased vulnerability to competitors’ reactions. The main challenge for the company is to ensure that the customer poses the right experience to generate the right brand knowledge.
In light of the present challenges faced by Coca Cola, The view of that creating and maintaining intense level of customer loyalty would provide solutions to many. For example, though the company has been criticized on many occasions for over use of water which is a scarce resource, with customer loyalty being extensively strong, the adverse impact created on the brand due to pressure group activities could be minimized. Moreover with the increasing cost of energy and the resulting thinning profit margins could also be solved through price increases as with high level of customer loyalty and the strong emotional link maintained between the brand and the customers, it is unlikely that the demand would impactfully drop due to the price increase, as the customers have become extensively price inelastic due to their loyalty towards the brand.
In line with the present trend in healthy consumption amongst customers and the decreasing sales revenue and profitability for carbonated beverage producers due to the high calorie and high sugar content of the products, it is a must for Coca Cola to launch products containing healthy characteristics like low or no calories, low or no sugar etc catering to the needs of the present customer segment as well as maintaining its market share whilst preventing the health and figure conscious customers from switching towards competitors. CITATION Sau08 l 1033 (Aggarwal, 2008)With the customer loyalty high and emotional link between the product and the customers being strong, Coca Cola would be able to position its healthy beverage range, effective, drawing customer appeal across the countries in which it operates creating a tight competition in the market.
25908001019175Brand Value Chain
00Brand Value Chain
Given the strong brand loyalty and reliability it is likely that customers would opt for Coca Cola branded products in place of other brands threatening the existence of smaller/newer brands of healthy beverages whilst creating strong competition against the sales revenue/ profitability and market share of the large players like Pepsi. CITATION Kel08 l 1033 (Keller, 2008)5248275154305Stakeholder Value
left201930Marketing Program Investment
00Marketing Program Investment
ATL/BTL adsCreate awareness Create loyalty Increase share
Healthy beveragesencourage and build premium pricing price, Market
2647950130175Market place Conditions
00Market place Conditions
Emphasis on flavors Wider network distribution, High Brand Awareness
and healthy products, More rangers of product More confident on brand
Clear focus on Coca cola Brand
Brand Value Chain is mainly discussed about the stages of values and how it multiple from the attributes program quality, market place conditions and the investment sentiments. This is important in the context where all board of directors is having only financial background
The main marketing activities are BTL/ATL Promotions, Paper advertisements, Radio advertisements, Sponsorships and brand associations. These events are structured to portray the essence of the brand and the organizations values.
This exposure is targeted at creating a unique pictures and occupying a place in the mind of the consumer. Below are some of the key outcomes of the marketing efforts..These activities create an intense drive in the market place and enable the product to be priced at a premium level in comparison with competitor brands. This further increase the chance of capturing previous untapped market segments and once exposed to the key value factors they become loyal customers.
This results the meeting of financial budgets will increase the stakeholder value while increasing Brand Equity
Therefore, all in all it could be stated that by strengthening brand resonance Coca Cola would be able to continue strong even amidst the present challenges faced.
2.3 Designing of Marketing Mix
Marketing mix is a set of actions or tactics which a company uses to promote its brands or products in the market. The main elements of the marketing mix can be identified as the 4Ps; product, price, place and promotion. It is of prime importance that the marketing mix be carefully selected to ensure that the new product launched is sustained in the market for the long-term creation customer satisfaction whilst becoming an essential in their daily routine.
Product – Product is the healthy beverages that would be developed and launched under Coca Cola brand. The main product characteristics are low calories and low sugar levels, which have become the main concerns of the present-day consumers. CITATION Mah09 l 1033 (Sagar, 2009)Price – Prices would be set slightly above the carbonated beverage range yet at a level which is affordable to all. This ensures that the new product is capable of capturing market share creating tough competition to other products which are of similar nature.
Place- Places of product availability would be maintained similar to the places of availability of Carbonated beverages under Coca Cola brand. Therefore, it would be essential to distribute the product efficiently and effectively, worldwide using the same distribution channels; that is with the use of Coca Cola bottling partners. CITATION Kel08 l 1033 (Keller, 2008)Promotion – Promotion is of high importance for creating market awareness for the new product range which is fundamental in generating demand as well as capturing market share. Therefore, it is suggested that company use both conventional and non-conventional promotion modes for the new product range which include large display boards, frequent advertising in the TV, sponsoring community events etc.
Give the present-day techno savviness of the community it would be more prudent for Coca Cola to use social media marketing (Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, YouTube, Facebook) which would create a higher market reach as well as higher level of customer engagement at a relatively low cost compared to other promotional means.
In light of the above that the given present context of carbonated beverage industry in the globe, it is a must for Coca Cola to diversify in to healthy beverage segment to sustain amidst the customer switching towards heathy consumption patterns. With high focus placed on building customer loyalty. We are confident that the company would succeed in extending its product life cycle, effectively combatting the threats from the external environmental factors.
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Keller, 2008. Strategic Brand Management, 3/E. s.l.:Pearson Education India.
Keller, K. L., 2009. Strategic Brand Management. s.l.:China Remin University Press.
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