MKTG301-003 semester project
The purpose of this assignment is to enable students, through a written exercise, to more completely understand the connection between the many broad topics of the Principles of Marketing course. Your assignment is to write a 4-to-5-page paper, not including figures, tables, or charts. You will begin with identification of a target market and end by assuming the role of marketing consultant making suggestions for ways to improve the effectiveness of the organization’s marketing mix being used to attract it (the target market). Remember: An organization’s marketing strategy includes identifying a specific target market and developing a marketing mix (4-Ps) developed for the purpose of meeting the needs of that target market, all in the context of a specific competitive environment. Following are the elements you are to include in the paper:
Choose a LOCAL organization (Greater Richmond Metropolitan Area – this is important, even if you are taking this online course outside of the GMRA area) that “markets” or does marketing (this criterion includes almost any business, non-profit organization, or government agency). Make it easy on yourself and choose an organization that you can observe the marketing efforts of and are familiar with. If you choose a very large organization that markets many different products, focus your paper on one product or product line. You may choose any organization you wish, as long as it is in good taste and markets something. Because marketing applies to all types of organizations, you may select a for-profit company, a public agency, or a not-for-profit organization.
Description of Target Market
After choosing an organization, your next step is to identify and describe the target market for the products(s) about which you are writing ( use your text’s description of target market as your guide). Do not say something like “young, mid-to-upper class women who wash their hair” and consider the target market identified and described. Try to pinpoint the thing(s) that make(s) the target market respond to the firm’s marketing mix in ways that are different from people who are not members of it. For example: “young (age 16-to-26), mid-to-upper class women (median family household income $XX,XXX) who when they wash their hair, perceive that they might have a dandruff problem; who are motivated by prestige and glamour; who like to pamper themselves and are willing to pay a little extra to do it.” A good statement tells the reader who is in the target market and who is not. It is very difficult to do a good job on this paper if you do a poor job of defining the target market. I will look at your definition of the target market if you like. The more specific you make your description, the better.
Evaluation of Current Marketing Mix/Customer Service/Customer Relationship Management
After discussing the target market you should then discuss the marketing-mix (4-Ps) the firm is using CURRENTLY to attract the chosen target market. You should describe each of the 4-Ps, then analyze and discuss how each one is being used to attract members of the target market. You should also address the synergy (if you don’t know what synergy means, look it up!) of the 4-Ps together, especially if you see that one, or more, does not fit the others.
Recommendations/Suggestions for Improving Competitiveness
After discussing the firm’s CURRENT marketing mix you should assume the role of marketing consultant and make specific suggestions for improving the firm’s effectiveness. These suggestions can be in the form of changes to any part of the current marketing mix to fix problems you identified. If you did not identify problems you should make suggestions for additional marketing activities. It is important that you say why you make the suggestion and how it will result in better appeal to the target market. These suggestions should be specific and not generic. Generic suggestions are ones like: “advertise more” or “improve the sales force.” Specific suggestions are ones like: “improve effectiveness of the sales force by starting a training program that emphasizes closing and presentation skills,” and then providing your rationale for the recommendation. Remember that your suggestions should be addressed at specific problems or opportunities so that you can justify them.
Be sure to write your report from the perspective of a marketing consultant and in THIRD-PERSON VOICE (not first-person [I, we]; not second-person [you]). Your paper should “look like” a lot like these documents. In other words: The paper should have a title, with your name centered at the top. You should have the following sections with sub-heads: Introduction/Background, Description of Target Market, Evaluation of Marketing Mix (including Customer Service considerations, if appropriate), Recommendations/ Suggestions for Improving Competitiveness, and Conclusion. The paper must be single-spaced (not the “automatic” 1.15 line spacing of many new Word programs), 4-to-5 pages long (not including any appendices, tables, or charts), numbered pages, and 12-point Arial font, with 1-inch margins. Following format guidelines demonstrated in these guidelines, as well as grammar/spelling/punctuation (GSP), organization, and clarity will be graded. (For example, for each misspelled word, 1 point will be deducted. For each grammar/punctuation error, 1 point will be deducted.)
Grading of the assignment is as follows:
Introduction/Background 5 points
Description of Target Market 30 points
Evaluation (see guidelines) 60 points
Recommendations/Suggestions 30 points
Conclusion Required, but 0 points
Format/GSP/Etc. 25 points
Total 150 points
Read and follow these guidelines carefully!