Marketing Research of Gourmet Grocery Store the Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

Marketing Research of Gourmet Grocery Store

The organization is not a chain of stores, but a group of three stores of medium size located at La Jolla, Del Mar and Encinitas in the San Diego area. The store is not trying to compete with the big marketing chains to achieve high volumes. At the same time, it has a very fine image, as it is located in high class shopping areas. The concentration of the store is on selling of food items consisting of "Fresh Bakery and Pastries, Fresh Produce, Fresh Meat & Seafood, Condiments and Packaged Foods and Cheese's and Specialty Dairy Products." Thus all marketing efforts have to be concentrated in these areas.

The objective of all marketing is to increase the level of profits that are being achieved through the business, and these are probably the objectives, which are the concern of all areas of business. Since the sales areas of this store are considered to be limited, the organization has to focus on enhancing the total revenues, which are being earned by getting more and more customers of the type who are presently coming over to the store. This is being tried through means of parties in the store. It is clear that the present customers tend to be food lovers and they would try to enhance their own capabilities of preparing various kinds of specialized dishes through the parties. In these, they would be trained by world famous chefs; experts and also by Kathy Kudler.

Apart from whatever learning they can enable to gather, they would be considered to be very happy in order to meet these persons who are probably ideal roles in their lives. These will tend to ensure that they continue to make their purchases in this store, and this is because similar opportunities will not be available to them at any other shop. Thus to a certain extent, it will try to flatter their ego. They will also be provided with the opportunity to bring their friends also to these events. This will also enable to create a social pressure on those friends in order to start buying their food requirements also from these stores. The overall total effect is expected to be one that of additional time which is being spent in the store, and once these individuals are into the store, they are also expected to buy the products.

Thus from the entire exercise, it could be said that the expectations are of increased business as a result of the purchase by the individuals who are being introduced to these stores by means of training programs, and for additional individuals to visit to the store as a result of the social pressure. In order to ensure that these activities receive the full amount of support from the consumers, they will be provided entries in a draw for the expensive items for their support and co-operation. The draw will tend to naturally take place later on. Some consumers might also tend to think that this would be an effective means to have a party in the comforts of their own house, and then the store will try to organize the same type of food at a higher cost. Through this method, it is expected that the new types of shoppers will be introduced and existing shoppers would be made more loyal. The only aspect which is to be considered is that the level of awards should tend to meet the customers' expectation levels, since if they are disheartened with the rewards which are attained for the efforts that they think they have put in, and then they may react negatively by not coming to the store for purchasing. This is an emotional method of drawing the customers towards the store and its effect will tend to focus on the correct effective methods of emotional handling the customers.

The second is a natural effort in order to get enhanced volume of sales from the customers, and this is being sought via a loyalty points program for the existing customers. This will enable to help the customers who are commercial purchasers of the products, as they tend to have other suppliers for the same products or items, but the consumption of the food items in any household is being limited by the number of members belonging to the household and also in terms of their regular levels of consumption. This is not however likely to be affected by any type of loyalty program through which some forms of rewards may be received, which are subject to alter. At the same time, the customers are quite likely to develop loyalty in their purchases from this store and not to keep transiting from one store to that of another. That is also the name for these programs known as "loyalty points programs." At the same time, this sort of programs can be considered to work in both ways, and while it may tend to increase the sales of Kudler's stores for a certain period of time, the competitors, if any are also viewed to be in a position to start a similar program based on their own preferences and thus trying to move away potential customers from Kudler's.

The concept however does not match with the price range that the store intends to sell. It is quite certain that there are several other stores as well, which would be selling similar amount of items at low rates, but their image for the product is not to be viewed as high as that of the Kudler's and that is cited as the reason for which the loyal customers of Kudler's will not go over to them. The case is somewhat similar when we compare it to cosmetics marketing, wherein the prices tend to show only the brand name and it has nothing to pertain to the quality or its inherent value. In such cases, it is to be noted that the introduction of a customer loyalty program may tend to harm the store in place of more than benefiting them. If any benefit is considered to be suitable to be given, it should be given for purchases on weekdays, that the store is not selling in required quantities, or for purchases above certain levels, which are being pre-decided. When the customer is not deciding regarding his purchases on the basis of the price, then why should any financial rewards, whether it is direct or indirect, be of appeal to the customer?

The third point that is being tried is of in relation to cost reduction, and that is always considered to be possible. This however enables to show only on profits derived from sale and it has nothing to do in relation to marketing. In the case of a store like that of the Kudler's, any benefit that derives by way of cost reduction should not be considered to be a benefit which is to be passed on to customers, as the customers which are coming to buy at Kudler's remain to buy for the image of Kudler's and not are bothered about the price that Kudler's charges.

The most significant part in any marketing related activity or exercise is to understand and be aware of the unique qualities of the product or service, which is to be marketed. In this case, the market size has been pre-determined already as a result of certain limitations or restrictions, which have been placed on the levels of marketing on the basis of the products which are being sold, developed forms of image of the store, and restrictions or limitations with regard to the share levels of the total market which the buyers of these products would tend to constitute as well as cover. To change those, would entail the meaning that Kudler's will have to become similar to any other store, and that might or would not bring about an enhancement in the sales or profit levels.

The most significant element pertaining to these stores is that of customer satisfaction, and customer satisfaction would enable to determine whether the customer will continue to progress with the store or not. The customer is also considered to be aware that there are other cheaper stores, which are available for selling the same products, but the customer would tend to feel that those stores do not provide the essential material, which is of the same quality of that of Kudler's. Whether that is considered to be true or not, is not a matter of topic that should be disputed upon. What is sold is not viewed to be a product, but it is to be a total image, which enables to satisfy the customer. The first and foremost effort, which has to be initiated, has to be to maintain and uphold this image. Thus it could be stated that one general policy, which pertains to such organizations, is to urgently replace the material at the time when the customer lodges…

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