Group Project Upload Group Developed a Situation SWOT

Excerpt from SWOT :

group project upload group developed a situation analysis a selected company culminating a SWOT analysis. This current situation company a marketing perspective.

In recent decades, companies throughout the world have based their existence and profit on the defiance of competition and the constant improvement of their marketing techniques and strategies in order to ensure their place in the consumer's choice as well as in the overall market segment. The role of the marketing strategy is in this case one of the most important in the overall strategy of company promotion because it should provide the necessary tools for creating an individual identity of products, lines of production and customer preference.

Coca Cola is one of the most well-known brands in the history of commercial marketing through the products it has put on the market as well as the approaches is has taken in time, since its beginnings in the 19th century. However, despite innovative actions being taken, given the fluidity and dynamics of the global market, the company is and should always be in search of new means of production, pricing, promotion, and placement, a combination that eventually yields success in front of its other competitors. Innovation is the spirit of evolution and Coca Cola has demonstrated throughout its history that its products are constantly bringing forward new innovative challenges for the customer to consider. Even so, the product is not sufficient and a strong marketing strategy always needs to be in place and in touch with the ultimate beneficiary of the production line: the customer.

A current SWAT analysis on the position of Coca Cola and the released Coca Cola Zero on the Australian market and has provided some clear evidence that while Coca Cola remains a market leader, especially through Coke Zero product (launched on the Australian market in 2007), there are a lot of challenges to be faced and overcome in order to ensure that Coca Cola remains the number one choice of customers for the targeted segments and through the products and concepts it promotes. When first introduced to the Australian market the product was a clear success. However, given the challenges facing beverage companies around the world, together with the local challenges posed by the Australian market, more needs to be done in order to ensure a proper consideration of Coke Zero in front of its competitors, Pepsi and the local Cola producers.,

2. Marketing Objectives

The marketing objectives for improving the market share of the product must tackle the challenges identified in the analysis. At this point, the main threats being posed to the product include the increase in the consumer's demand for a healthier life style, which is often associated with a lower consumption of carbonated drinks, an increased reorientation of the consumer for other types of non-alcoholic beverages such as coffee, and the reconfiguration of the legal system to require the inclusion of detailed description of potentially harmful substances related to the products.

The objectives of the marketing plan for the next 12 months are not to de-mystify the threats above, but rather to provide alternative thinking to the customer. In this sense, the objectives would be to somewhat address the concerns of the customer in a wider environment. The threats mentioned above may be applicable to any product or even service consumed or used in excess. Therefore for instance, Coke Zero, despite the fact that it does not have sugar, it is still the representative of a carbonate soft drink that may be associated with an unhealthy life style and may result to weight gaining, cellulite, to name just a few. However, if this image would be associated, presented, and discussed in a wider environment in which a healthy lifestyle is indeed promoted, the perspective of the healthy -- oriented life style may change or at least that consumer may have a counterargument.

Similarly, the consumption of other beverages is a threat for the product. In Australia, the consumption of coffee has increased in recent years and massive promotional activities are taking place daily on the benefits of coffee. One such example would be the one retrieved from the Coffee Traders Association in Australia. It points out that "According to researchers in the U.S., drinking between one and four cups of coffee a day can drastically reduce the risk of cirrhosis - and is especially good at repairing the damage done by heavy drinking sessions."Other recent health studies have shown that the drink can also benefit the heart; fight cancer, diabetes and Parkinson's." (Australian Coffee Traders Association, 2013) Therefore, from an unadvised consumer perspective that has limited knowledge on beverages, the comparison would clearly benefit the consumption of coffee instead of Coke Zero. While the former provides a lot of potential cures or preventive action, the latter is associated with the excessive use of corn syrup, which is in its turn associated with obesity. Therefore, the unadvised customer will associate Coke Zero to a "no benefit" area whereas the consumption of coffee would almost seem a medical advice. In this case, the consumer must be educated and more informed in order to be able to make the difference between beverages and the need to consume a product with moderation or with care.

Finally, the issue of a legislation that demands the description of potentially harmful ingredients can be redirected and used as an advantage. There are a lot of critics arguing the high level of fructose corn syrup in Coke Zero, suggesting that in fact it is aiding obesity. More precisely, The most common soft drinks with high fructose corn syrup. According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the possible role of high fructose corn syrup, the prevalence of obesity in the United States" (Food and Drinks, 2013). The same source cited also points out that "The researchers believe that excessive consumption of beverages containing high fructose corn syrup, a significant contribution to obesity. Coke Zero commonly known as Splenda, which is a non-caloric sweetener sucralose, Sweet. Coke Zero can be used as sugar substitutes often contain high fructose corn syrup soda" (Food and Drinks, 2013). This comes to show two points. A point is made that if legislation forces producers in general to reveal the full content of their products, the companies are obliged to obey it. At the same time though, this action can be countered in the eye of the consumer by providing educated information on the components listed as part of the Coke Zero. For example, the corn syrup, indeed, in large quantities it does contribute to obesity. At the same time though brown sugar in large quantities has a similar effect. Yet, if the consumer or potential consumer would be educated to "read" the labels and be aware of the products Coca Cola utilizes, then a more positive view would be ensured from the consumer side. The second point made on the above is that there needs to be a more organized approach to the research conducted on the components of all soft drink products, not merely Coke Zero. Research studies have pointed out, as mentioned above that the negative reactions to fructose corn syrup are seen in excessive consumption. Therefore, moderation should be promoted at the country level through the use of objective, quantifiable, and verifiable research sources.

The next 12 months, given the above should focus on the three areas where threats have been identified. The best option would be a massive awareness campaign together with public events that would also relate to the CSR activities Coca Cola is doing throughout Australia. The rational for this would be to improve the image of Coke Zero but not necessarily as a standalone product but rather to integrate it into a wider initiative, that of health living through moderation. More precisely, the awareness campaign would need to focus on increasing the attention of the consumers on what exactly is a healthy life. Such an initiative can take the form of media interventions that would target the 18-38 male segment market that Coke Zero is aimed at but at the same time not leaving out the rest of the market, as this would be a project not aimed at directly promoting Coke Zero but rather at placing it in the wider picture of the healthy life style. Most importantly however, the "consume with moderation" approach should be followed at all times. Another aspect of the awareness campaign may include the second threat experienced by Coke Zero, that of the expanding consumption of coffee. This consumption should not be denied, but rather placed aside as a part of a healthy life style. The research conducted on the consumption of coffee cannot be denied and further criticism would target Coca Cola if it tried to do so. If, however, the benefits of coffee would be recognized, it is possible that a small percentage of the market may choose to have coffee instead of Coke Zero, but for Coke Zero, the negative image would be somewhat reduced.…

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