Again, Mc Donald's has managed to deal with competitive threats posed by both these market players due to the fact that the prices that Burger King, Starbucks and Costa Coffee charge are much higher than that charged by Mc Donald's. The primary reason behind higher prices of Costa Coffee and Starbucks is the fact that their target market is much stronger and niche as compared to that of Mc Donald's. The recent economic crunch however, has benefitted Mc Donald's as many people who prefer sophisticated ambience, due to their lower purchasing power and increased inflationary pressures now prefer Mc Donald's over the likes of Starbucks and Costa Coffee. As a result, Mc Donald's is the strongest market player in the Global region today.
Mc Donald's target market includes all the people who travel for leisure and/or business purposes and prefer to have a luxurious accommodation. The cafe provides best possible services for corporate guests such as, Wi-Fi connections Besides that, all cafe locations are one of the finest in the country that are known to attract high number of tourists and local diners. Mc Donald's provides its guests, a huge variety of eating options and offers dining services for luncheons, dinner or snacks.
Mc Donald's is also one of the preferred eateries for international tourists who find one of a kind experience at Mc Donald's at an affordable price. Due to the variety of service hours and the relaxing atmosphere many tourists prefer to drop in Mc Donald's after or during their tourist activities
Mc Donald's is a chain of cafes, primarily specializing in the area of casual dining. The major locations of the cafe include various urban regions, shopping malls, food courts, airport lounges and many busy commercial centres. Mc Donald's has also. Apart from that Mc Donald's also has expanded its presence in not only many of the world's leading urban centers such as London, United Kingdom, New York, Tokyo, Mumbai, Singapore and Hong Kong (Keegan 2002). The wide and unique range of services offered by the cafe includes a cafe bar restaurant that offers a varied, unique and extended menu with full table services, a club store and the kiosks.
The market for Mc Donald's is a very competitive one (Kapferer 2008). Mc Donald's stiff competition from world's leading cafe chains operating in United Kingdom such as Starbucks. The major competitors include Starbucks, The Coffee Club and Costa Coffee which not only target leisure tourists but also corporate diners. Besides that, Mc Donald's also faces competition from smaller roadside cafes that are attracting greater number of customers due to lower prices in the current economic crisis. Most of the diners such as students are cutting down on their leisure expenses by choosing cheaper cafes over the luxurious ones. However, Mc Donald's uniquely sophisticated ambience along with affordable pricing strategy helps the company to combat the competitive pressures posed by those smaller cafes.
Mc Donald's pursues an aggressive marketing strategy which is based on an amalgamation of diverse marketing variables (Jack, 2004). The marketing strategy aims at developing a brand image that creates customer loyalty for the business. The marketing objectives that Mc Donald's plans to achieve from its marketing strategy are mentioned as follows:
Mc Donald's wants to develop an image of hospitality providers and will provide information that so far no other cafe does (Silk, 2006).
The cafe aims at triggering sales revenue by providing special online promotional services and loyalty memberships.
The cafe aims at maximizing its marketing share and become a pioneer in unique interactive marketing mechanisms and eliminates competition in the market.
The cafe aims at triggering purchase decisions and repeated purchases as the recent economic crunch has resulted in a decline of diners and leisure activities around the globe.
The cafe aims at ensuring that the marketing strategy works in such a way that it assists the cafe management in serving its customers better.
The cafe aims to increase its customer knowledge base regarding the unique services that the cafe provides to its customers.
According to Copley (2004), the cafe aims to communicate its brand value, develop close working relationships with its customers and to identify their needs in an effective manner.
The cafe aims to continue to differentiate from its competition and offering added value to its guests.
The cafe aims at retaining its current levels of repeat business and developing further customer loyalty in a competitive market (Mercer, 1996).
The cafe aims at attracting new market sectors such as multinational companies from the use of its above mentioned marketing strategy.
The cafe aims at providing a positive cafe experience to all guests.
As stated earlier, an important part of communications is getting the message across to the right group of people. For that purpose segmenting a market is essential. This is because researches have established it that despite of the fact that a product is targeted towards a number of age groups and cultures, the reasons for each of those groups to make a purchasing decision would be different. Therefore, in most cases, the way children would be communicated a message would be different from the way adult would be targeted.
Mc Donald's target market includes all the people that enjoy fast food. The overall target market is a middle income group who prefer going to restaurants that are affordable and provide quality service. The market is segmented into age groups. One is leisure diners and the other one includes corporate diners. Corporate diners are usually an age group of 28 years old and above and they include a large number of corporate clients as well.
Market segmenting would enable Mc Donald's to identify groups of customers who share a similar set of wants / needs. Mc Donald's segmentation below would consider geographic, demographic, psychographic and behavioural factors.
Targeting is carried out based on market size, access, and brand equity, and ability to communicate in local languages Therefore, considering the attractiveness of identified segments and Mc Donald's business strengths, focus would be primarily on customer segments from English speaking countries.
The overall marketing campaign of Mc Donald's is focused on three distinct targets namely, co-creation, brand loyalty and consumer food trends. With an effective integration of these three factors, a strong marketing strategy can be devised that will help in attracting newer customer segments and will also help removing the negative perceptions that have been associated with brand.
Co creation is a tool that is relatively new concept in the field of marketing and is highly consumer for products that are market oriented. Co Creation basically allows a consumer and the firm to work in partnership in order to design and produce the product. The consumer however is not directly part of the production process.
Mc Donald's will implement the Co Creation tool through smartphone applications and social networking pages such as Facebook. Under this scheme, consumers will be allowed to 'design' a burger of their choice, using their choice of ingredients and name the burger of their choice. The best burger, which can also be selected through public votes will be made a part of Mc Donald's permanent menu.
The biggest plus point of this strategy is the fact that when consumers will be creating burgers of their choice, they will be well aware of the ingredients used and preparation methods, therefore it will be easier for Mc Donald's to refute negative perceptions such as it adheres to unhealthy production methods. Moreover, Co creation strategy will also help at strengthening the notion that Mc Donald's values the preferences and choices of its consumers. This will also in turn help triggering brand loyalty, which is another important aspect of the campaign.
The new strategy proposed by the Mc Donald's cafes is focused on the integrated marketing strategy. The marketing mix for this kind of strategy is more based on the four Cs rather than the conventional four Ps of a marketing mix (Klopper, 2006). The marketing mix for Mc Donald's cafes is discussed under the following sections.
Mc Donald's cafe believes that the secret of a successful marketing and in turn, a successful business lies in the maximum satisfaction of consumers. Mc Donald's has build its brand image on its unique selling point that it has blended in the contemporary and casual dining trends with the sophisticated ambience. The overall ambience is mentally soothing and ideal for a relaxed dining experience. The cafe offers a unique menu that has options for different meal times including breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. The menu has a large variety which is why Mc Donald's does not only attract local diners but also a large number of international tourists as well. Co Creation will not allow adding newer variety to the menu, but also will bring in more innovation that will help fighting competition and add a new dimension to the fast food concept. It will also make dining more fun for…