Rise and Fall of Dove Firming

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Rise and Fall of Dove Firming
Chapter I Introduction Although launching and relaunching products are very common things nowadays, still, in many cases people tend to forget or not care about all the energy that the marketers have invested into the different promotions that surround these actions. This is mostly because modern societies have gotten used to having everything at hand, and that the advertisements have flooded our cities, our nights, our lives. While numerous people disregard the efforts of the brand teams, at the same these teams can easily overlook very small, but important tendencies of the market, which will lead to an unsuccessful campaign or in the better case, at The topic of the dissertation, as it can be seen from the title the examination of how Dove has relaunched its Firming Lotion and Range in 2004. In the first chapters, the relevant theories will be reviewed, which touch upon basic marketing issues, such as the branding, the 4Ps, the segmenting-targeting-positioning process and the reasons for relaunching a product. This part also devotes times to examine the SWOT analysis, which is a relevant tool for examining the internal and external factors of a success or failure. The 3rd chapter discusses the ways of data collection and the reasons why this dissertation lacks primary person-to-person research and why digging into the numbers brought better results. The next section deals with Unilever and Dove as the company and brand and their environment, as well as introduces the Dove Firming as it was between its 2001 launch and the 2004 relaunch for the better understanding of the topic. Chapter 5 is the main part of the dissertation which reflects the theoretical part on the relaunch of the Firming Range of 2004 and the marketing campaign that followed the event. This chapter is divided into two unnumbered subsections, of which the first contains the examination along the lines of a SWOT and 4P analysis and which will mostly touch the promotional issues. The second half discusses the pricing strategy of the brand and what has happened since the relaunch of the Range, why Dove lost what it has built during the promotional period, and how the market has shaped in the last 1 ½ years. The last chapter deals with the future possibilities in short, and contains recommendations as well. Together with parts of chapter 5, it also serves as a conclusion.

Bibliography and the index of tables, figures and other relevant appendices are placed at the end of this document. By the end, the reader should become familiar with the basic theoretical background of product positioning and marketing elements and their importance, which is exemplified with the help of the Dove Firming relaunch. Also, during the last chapters, it is discussed how the brand has performed during the key months and what were those aspect that were notably well managed and badly managed. In the very last part a summary and recommendations can be found with some outlooks for the future as well. On the other hand this dissertation does not include deep references to the societal changes that occurred during the last decade in Hungary and their connection to the beauty industry. Neither has it examined the elements of the PEST analysis or other analyses than the SWOT, because they would exceed the word limit, although they would definitely serve as an interesting topic for another study.


Target marketed products on the other hand examine the prospective customers based on their general similarities, while keeping in mind that they are in fact different. A well-defined market segment consists of a large identifiable group of the targets whose members have similar needs, and purchasing powers, located in the same geographic area and their buying attitudes or habits are parallel as well. In other words, the segments should be identifiable, reachable, relevant and ready to act. Usually, when it comes to B2C marketing, companies try to do segmentation along the lines of social classes, age groups, general demographic or geographical attributes. (Kotler, 2002, p. 143) Besides the mass and target marketing, some other techniques should be noted as well. The niche marketing, which aims at gaining ground in a very small sector of the market, mostly attracts premium-brands. Because of this, even though the markets might be very small they can be very attractive and rewarding as well. Local marketing aims at the identifying and fulfilling the needs of a smaller environment. Finally, at the extreme end of line lies the individual marketing, which perceives each customer as an individual entity and serves accordingly to their needs. Kotler brings the example of tailors, shoe makers and even database makers. It should be noted, that B2B (Business to Business) marketing activities are different from the B2C (Business to Customer) trends, because business customers (companies and industries) play on a much bigger scale than individuals, they tend to have sharp deadlines and quality is an even bigger issue in the B2B sector than it is in the B2C. Targeting can be interpreted as an extension of the segmentation. Once the companies have identified the segment(s) they need to indentify whom and how to target. While Kotler (2002, p. 156) brings up several possibilities of targeting (such as single-segment concentration, selective targeting, product and market specialization or full market coverage), due to the low relevancy to the current topic, only the single and market-specialization will be Firming Lotion itself target very clearly identifiable people and markets and since these are existing products, there is no way to alter their targets in a retrospective examination, therefore it does not pay getting into the thorough examination of the other targeting strategies.

The relaunch [RL] of a product is a part of the re-positioning process; it actually occurs when a product that has existed earlier on the given market is re-introduced. This mostly also means that the positioning, and/or the product itself changes. There are numerous ways to RL a product, but concerning the activities that surround the procedure we can differentiate between silent and non-silent relaunch. The difference between these two is the prior happens without informing the customers or the media, without spending money on ATL or BTL advertising, whereas the latter is the exact opposite of this.

The 4Ps

communications and sales plans. By itself, this will most probably not sell the product. The 4Ps (sometimes five or seven) are the basic features of a marketed item that the customers encounter. These are the product itself, the price, the promotion and the place. These are the As Naylor (1999, pp. 689-690) explains, product includes the brand, the packaging and the associated services. This is a very important element of the 4Ps, or maybe the most important because the product is the physical embodiment of what is being marketed; it is the item that people take home and are going to use, therefore marketers should put a huge effort into developing the product as good as possible. The product itself should not only be relevant -2. Although most books also exhibit more or less exact amount of years which describe the length of each phase, I would rather refrain from showing such an example, for the reason that there are excellent examples that disprove that products without change are not only viable for 5-10 m [a.k.a. Nivea Crème].


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