Hamburger Essays and Research Papers

Instructions for Hamburger College Essay Examples

Title: Hamburgers and Americanism

  • Total Pages: 4
  • Words: 1459
  • Works Cited:4
  • Citation Style: Chicago
  • Document Type: Essay
Essay Instructions: Argue what about a hamburger could be considered American? How does the hamburger embody "Americanism", and why can it be considered to be an American icon or symbol? Include a brief history of the Hamburger in America, and use this to support your arguments.

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Works Cited:

Works Cited

Berger, Michael L. 2001. The Automobile in American History and Culture: A Reference Guide. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.

Betts, Raymond F. 2004. A History of Popular Culture: More of Everything, Faster, and Brighter. New York: Routledge.

Cudahy, Brian J. 1990. Cash, Tokens, and Transfers: A History of Urban Mass Transit in North America. New York: Fordham University Press.

Hamburger today website at http://www.ahamburgertoday.com/archives/2005/08/the_history_of.php

INVENTIVE LAND; See Early Patent Models in Arlington. 2003. The Washington Times, March 30, D04.

Rozin, Elizabeth, 1994. The Primal Cheeseburger: A Generous Helping of Food History Served

On a Bun New York: Penguin Press.

Watson, James L., ed. 1997. McDonald's in East Asia McDonald's in East Asia. Stanford, CA: Stanford University.

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Title: Requirements Descriptive Process Analysis Essay Write a 3 page descriptive process analysis essay cooking a meal Junior 3rd year College Level Paper This meal a complicated ordeal a multiple affair a simple task a spaghetti meatball dinner grilling hamburgers outdoor grill fixingsbun lettuce tomato mayo pickle

  • Total Pages: 3
  • Words: 1091
  • Bibliography:3
  • Citation Style: MLA
  • Document Type: Research Paper
Essay Instructions: Requirements for Descriptive/Process Analysis Essay
? Write a 3 page descriptive process analysis essay about cooking a meal. (Junior- 3rd year College Level Paper) This meal can be a complicated ordeal such a multiple-course affair or a simple task like a spaghetti and meatball dinner or perhaps grilling hamburgers on an outdoor grill with all the fixings?bun, lettuce, tomato, mayo, pickle, etc. This essay should read more like a narrative than an instruction manual.
Keep in mind this paper is for a guy (ENG 111 Expository Writing Course) ? don?t make any food that is too foreign or gourmet?. Something a guy would cook.
?
Be sure to use at least 3 examples of each of the 5 senses (sight, sound, taste, smell, touch), Perhaps making a separate list/chart of each of the senses will help you and then list at least 3 impressions for each sense. Try to use these impressions in your paper. See the following example:
o Sight: black-bottomed pan; white colander; plaid flannel pajamas
o Sound: grease sizzling; thud of feet; whir of the mixer
o Smell: spicy sausage; fresh bread; citrus orange juice
o Touch: spongy bread; cold floor; sticky batter
o Taste: tangy; bland; sour
o
? You should use as many sensory descriptions as possible and appropriate when writing this essay. The sensory details do not have to be limited to just the cooking experience.
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?Be sure to use at least 3 examples of each of the 5 senses (sight, sound, taste, smell, touch).
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?Pay attention to the order of tasks to be performed. AVOID making this essay just one action after the next. For example, don?t simply spend 3 pages saying ?First, I get the box out of the cabinet. Then I get the milk out of the fridge. Then I find a bowl and a spoon. Then?Then?Then?? Be descriptive and creative in your writing. Do NOT simply relate the sequence of events. See Below Sample Essay
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o Use the MLA format for typing a paper. Double space the entire paper. Use New Times Roman - 12 font ?..
o
? Make an additional Works Cited Page if you use another authors material.
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? Don?t forget to proofread and check your spelling and grammar.
________________________________________
See below example ?.Use of description in the essay could be something like this:

Breakfast in the Making

As I stumble out of bed, I am already thinking about the breakfast casserole I promised the kids I would make this morning. After all, it is Christmas. My feet plod across the cold hard wood floor with a soft, sticky thud as I make my way into the bathroom. I splash warm water on my face and listen to hum of the heater working hard to keep the house toasty.
The spicy aroma of one pound of sausage frying is already making me hungry as the grease sizzles and hisses in the black-bottomed frying pan. Upstairs I can hear the dull rumple of bed sheets being thrown off and the bang of closet doors opening and closing. Soon I will see my sleepy-eyed children come slouching down the stairs in their plaid flannel pajamas and fuzzy bear claw slippers to slump at the kitchen table until breakfast is served.
I crack 6 eggs and watch the gelatin-like yolks turn creamy and smooth under the spindles of the whisk as I stir in two cups of milk. Setting aside the egg mixture, I turn my attention to the task of slicing up a stack of white bread, eight slices high. The bread is spongy under my palm as I press softly on the stack to keep it steady as I slice. Once I have cubed the bread, I gently toss them into the bottom of the greased casserole dish.
By this time, the sausage is done, so I take the pan from the unit and scrape the meat into a white, plastic colander waiting in the water-stained sink. I shake the colander, the chunks of meat jumping inches into the air and the thick, orange grease dripping into the sink. When the meat is thoroughly drained, I tip the colander over the casserole dish, adding the meat to the bread cubes. In doing so, I am reminded of the way adept waitresses pour water from the side of the pitcher in order to pour only water, no ice.
Taking the bowl of egg mixture, I pour it into the casserole dish. The bread and sausage float like little islands in the frothy mixture of egg and milk. After grating almost one whole block of sharp cheddar cheese over the top of the other ingredients, I realize that this dish looks much more appealing when it has cooked up golden brown and bubbling at the edges than it does now when it is nothing more than a lumpy, soupy, cheese-covered mess.

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Works Cited

"American Angus Association - Angus Education Center." American Angus Association.

Web. 26 Sept. 2011. http://www.angus.org/Education/AngusEducation.aspx

BBQ Charcoal and Grilling | Kingsford. Web 26 Sept. 2011.

http://www.kingsford.com/

Safety."

The University of Maine. Web. 26 Sept. 2011. http://umaine.edu/publications/4278e/

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Title: Review websites McDonalds McDonalds Corporation Facebook Read stories HU experience alumni McRib awesome comments Now components strategic success Hamburger U contribute McD's execution strategy

  • Total Pages: 2
  • Words: 684
  • Sources:2
  • Citation Style: APA
  • Document Type: Essay
Essay Instructions: Review these websites: McDonald?s, McDonald?s Corporation, Facebook. Read some of the stories about the HU experience from alumni and not "McRib is awesome!" comments.

Now, using the eight components of strategic success, how does Hamburger U contribute to McD's execution strategy?

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References

Prokopeak, M.(2012). McDonald's USA: Where Burgers Are Big Business.Retrieved August 12,2013 from http://clomedia.com/articles/view/where-burgers-are-big-business

Kowitt, B.(2012). Why McDonald's wins in any economy. Retrieved August 12,2013 from http://management.fortune.cnn.com/2011/08/23/why-mcdonalds-wins-in-any-economy/

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Title: Marketing Channels and Methods

  • Total Pages: 7
  • Words: 2664
  • References:0
  • Citation Style: MLA
  • Document Type: Research Paper
Essay Instructions: Could I have WRITERGIRL or C.R. complete this assignment?

NOTE: There needs to be a citation in EVERY paragraph of this assignment

Over the past three weeks, you and your colleagues each have developed most of the components of a Strategic Marketing plan. Now it is time to put the pieces together. Your 7-8 page paper MUST should include:
? Objectives & Mission Statement (from #2 below)
? Customer Targets (from #5)
? Competitor Targets (from #5)
? Product/Service Features (from #1 below)
? Core Strategy (from #3 below)
? Marketing Mix:
o Communications & Promotion (from #6 below)
o Pricing (from #4 below)
? Product Policy
? Channels of Distribution
? Customer Relationship Management


References: Winer, R.S. (2004). Marketing management, 2nd edition. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson Education, Inc.

1. Marketing Conference: Idea and Proposal - Merab Morgan Diet Plan

One problem currently faced by the fast food industry, and by McDonald?s in particular, is that the fast food purveyor is perceived as marketing an unhealthy product that is harmful to consumers. It is in the industry?s interest to encourage people to eat more of its product, which is largely high-calorie and low in essential fruits, vegetables, and grains, all at the base of the FDA food pyramid. Also, to live a healthy lifestyle Americans, as a whole, must weigh less, and thus eat less calorie-dense food, as well as exercise. The popularity of such films as ?Supersize Me,? have only contributed to the decline of McDonald?s stock, and created a rejection of its formerly family-friendly image (Bauman, 2005).

However, one woman recently lost 37 pounds on a McDonald?s diet, just as Morgan Spurlock, the director of ?Supersize Me,? gained weight and lost overall bodily fitness on the diet. The real-life examples of these two individuals show that they simply made different choices at the same establishment. Bauman?s selection of ?a combo consisting of a quarter-pounder, side salad with balsamic vinaigrette dressing and large unsweetened iced tea,? with less than 500 calories and roughly 20 grams of fat,? stands in stark contrast to Spurock?s choices (Bauman, 2005).

Thus, merely eating at a McDonald?s will not cause a decline in health. My proposal is to improve McDonald?s company image for the future. I propose that we recruit Merab Morgan, an ordinary housewife, to be the new spokeswoman for McDonald?s, and to market her McDonald?s diet in a series of commercials titled ?The McDonalds Weight Loss Challenge?.

Taking the McDonald?s weight loss challenge could be one way to counteract the perception that McDonald?s is not inherently unhealthy. In addition to using Morgan in commercials, McDonald?s could also incorporate a promotional game, as it has in the past with promotional games such as its Monopoly scratch off, only rather than merely playing a fun game, in this game customers could answer scratch-off informational questions about the nutrition in various products (McDonald?s, 2005).

Also, McDonald?s, instead of focusing on volume in individual meals, could offer coupons to consumers, encouraging more immediate, moderate consumption, but ?return trips? to the restaurant, to buy its smaller burgers, salads, and healthier options.

Today, there is a growing awareness that the food we eat affects our health and our whole life. However, Americans today do not want to sacrifice taste to eat right. Rather, they want to enjoy their favorite fast foods in a way that combines the basic tenets of a healthy diet: balance, variety and moderation. In my proposal, people can continue to eat their favorite fast foods, even if they are high in fat, salt or sugars, by moderating their portion size and frequency. With Merab Morgan as living proof of the results, consumers? interest in a fast food diet and health should garner a fairly high level of interest.


References

Bauman, Valerie. (11 Aug 2005) ?People try to lose weight at McDonalds.? AP Wire. Accessed on AOL on 22 Aug 2005 at http://aolsvc.news.aol.com/news/article.adp?id=02

McDonald?s (2005) Official Website. Retrieved 22 Aug 2005 at
http://www.mcdonalds.com/

2. The McDonald?s ?Diet Plan? Marketing Strategy: Second Week Comprehensive Strategic Marketing Plan

The objectives of the new McDonald?s ?Merab Morgan? Diet are to increase revenue for the company in the short term, and in the long term undue the damage done to the company by the negative press generated by the success of the film ?Supersize Me.? Over the course of the year, McDonald?s wishes to gain a greater percentage of the revenue of the fast food market than its most prominent competitors of Wendy?s and Burger King. It also wishes to gain some of the type of positive media as the chain Subway did during its advocacy of the Subway Diet.

The Mission Statement is simple?eat right, eat well at McDonald?s. The measurable success of the short-term campaign can be seen in the participation of the component games, whereby consumers will answer nutritional questions about McDonald?s foods and other food questions, in return for winning free foods the next time they visit the restaurant.

Also, the company throughout the course of the year will give coupons for return visits, rather than stress larger and larger meals during singular visits. This is a realistic goal, given that it satisfies customer?s desires for value in a positive fashion. It is attainable, given that customers still love McDonald?s food, and that McDonald?s will continue to provide value and service to its customers. Also, it is well timed, given that consumers are working more hours, are increasingly beset by high expenses by the price of fuel, and are eating more meals outside the home.

The product is innovative, because it shows that with the correct management, even food we do like can be healthy. It adapts portion control strategies of other diets, such as Weight Watchers, into a McDonald?s ?fun? format that makes dieting seem almost fun. Like Jenny Craig, it stresses the value of prepackaged food for convenience and portion control, but not food that is self-consciously diet food.

Rather than sell fruit and salads and veggie burgers like its competitors Burger King and Wendy?s, which tends to cause consumers to ask ?can?t I cut up an apple at home for less money than 4.99 for a salad,? McDonald?s stress on portion control and return customers who can still diet beneath the Golden Arches stresses that it provides a unique service, that of burgers, but through its new promotional strategy that de-emphasizes big meals and stresses return foot traffic, does so in a healthy and portion controlled way. ?What is the right strategy to follow in a highly competitive market in which demand is relatively flat?? stated one executive recently. ?The answer for us is to identify what our niche is in the market. For us, it is producing?hamburgers." Healthy hamburgers (Collins, 2002). Stressing return traffic for those hamburgers is an acknowledgement that McDonald?s ?fries and soda are where the fat [profit] margins really lie,? for fast food companies ? but that does not have to mean fat consumers! (Munarriz, 2003)



References

Collins, Luke. (2002) ?Chips are down for Burger Giants? MCD: McDonald?s Corporation News and Articles. Retrieved 27 Aug 2005 at http://www.licenseenews.com/news/news134.html

Munarriz, Eric. ?Burger Wars.? (2003) The Motley Fool.com Retrieved 27 Aug 2005 at http://www.fool.com/news/commentary/2003/commentary030407ram.htm

3. The McDonald?s ?Diet Plan? Marketing Strategy: Third Week Core Strategy

Americans love to eat. Americans love burgers and fries. But Americans also, by and large, want and need to lose weight to improve their health and appearance. Eating McDonald?s food in reasonable portions will allow them to accomplish both objectives. They will look better, feel better, and still be able to eat convenient and tasty food.

A value proposition is a clear statement of the tangible results a customer gets from using a company?s products and services (Konrath, 2005). McDonald?s has always offered its customers financial value, in the form of cheap, tasty food. But now the value will be given to the customer in a way that is better for the customer?s physical as well as financial health.

This new key is portion control, as exemplified by the real-life example of a woman who lost weight eating nothing but food from McDonald?s. This example shows the value of eating McDonald?s food. A new promotional campaign that gives rewards for the next visit, rather than super-sizing current food portions also underlines the financial value as well the value of eating normal size portions. It also shows McDonald?s takes an interest in its consumer?s health.

This will be complimented by a game that encourages consumers to learn more about nutrition, and the nutritional content of McDonald?s food. By collecting scratch-off game pieces with the correct answer to different nutrition questions, return business to that increases financial revenue for the company will also be encouraged in a healthy manner.

Lastly, Merab Morgan, the woman who lost weight on the diet will be featured in a series of advertisements, stressing that real people can lose weight on McDonald?s. Her life as a busy soccer mom will also come into sharp focus?the consumer will gain the added value of time and money, without sacrificing health

McDonald?s thus can reposition itself in the fast food market once again against competitors such as salad-selling Wendy?s or Burger King?s new veggie options. It can show that it is still a caring, family friendly company that brings families closer together and gives them more time to spend together, time not spent over a hot stove, in a healthy way.

References
Konrath, Jill. (2005) ?How to Write a Strong Value Proposition.? Sideroad. Retrieved 2 Sept 2005 at http://www.sideroad.com/Sales/value_proposition.html


4. The McDonald?s Diet Plan Pricing Strategy

McDonald?s previous pricing strategy was that of a purely, famously value-based strategy (Marketing Teacher, 2005). The company?s aim was to attract a high volume of customers. McDonald?s maximized its revenue by encouraging customers to produce a large amount of inexpensive goods, such as starches and sugars, for a lower price than its competitors. This is called the ?maximize quantity pricing strategy? (Net MBA, 2005). However, this purely value-driven philosophy for one-time customer visits has turned public opinion and even the food industry against McDonald?s, because of its stress on volume. Once, people came to McDonalds for value from the brand, now the brand has lost its cache, even while the pricing remains low in relation to competitors.
For starters, the new diet plan will feature products that are lower or on par with the prices charged by the competition, like Wendy?s, Burger King, and Subway. But I?m not trying to compete with them purely by selling a cheaper product; my aim is to shift the focus of the company from a stress on cheap quantities of food given to the customer on single visits to a stress on giving consumer value on return-visit basis. From ?target return? pricing, whereby a certain return profit on a single good is expected the company must stress a more subtle form of ?value based? pricing with additional psychological elements of pricing. In the new promotion of the McDonald?s diet, coupons are bestowed upon a customer?s first visit in a way that gives them value for volume by offering them a discount on their next meal, switching from a cumulative quantity discount overall, where a consumer gains value from buying in immediate bulk, to a longer term quantity strategy (Net MBA, 2005). Also, the consumer gains the psychological value of being on a diet, yet still eating fast food. The aim of bringing them into the restaurant is achieved.
This new pricing emphasis stresses continued McDonald?s of regular consumers, but consumption over an extended period, thus stretching the customer?s calorie needs over a larger period than a day?a strategy of smaller portions employed by the first independent designer of the diet herself, Merab Morgan. Also, the creation of a game whereby individuals answer questions about McDonald?s food?s nutritional contents will create an added psychological incentive to return to the fast food establishment, so as to continue to play the game, make money. The company gains the long-term psychological advantage of showing that McDonald?s is upfront with its product?s ingredients and cares about the value its food can give to its customers, by decreasing bundle or bulk based consumption on single visits, but making up for the lost volume of additionally purchased goods with higher rates of return traffic into its stores.


References

?Pricing? (2005) Marketing Teacher. Retrieved 8 Se3pt 2005 at http://www.marketingteacher.com/Lessons/lesson_pricing.htm

?Pricing Strategy.? (2005) Net MBA. Retrieved 7 Sept 2005 at http://www.netmba.com/marketing/pricing/



5. Consumer Needs and Marketing Efforts

A need is defined as ?a state of felt deprivation in a person? (Kotler, Chandler, Gibbs, & McColl 1999, p. 4). The most basic human needs are those for food, clothing, warmth, and safety. There are also needs that are more psychological, such as the need to feel loved, to feel successful, or to feel a sense of belonging. A more thorough explanation of needs can be found by considering Abraham Maslow?s hierarchy of needs theory.
Maslow?s hierarchy of needs theory describes five levels of need that exist in a hierarchical order. In order from highest to lowest, these needs are: physiological, safety, belongingness, esteem, and self-actualization (Daft 1997, p. 530). The physiological need refers to the basic human needs for food and water. These are essentially the basic things that every individual needs to physically survive. The safety need refers to the need to feel safe, secure, and free from threats. Depending on individual circumstances, this could refer to a need to feel financially secure, including having job security, or it could refer to a need to feel free from threats of violence. It could also refer to a need to feel emotionally secure, including feeling secure in family relationships. The third need is belongingness. This refers to the need for social acceptance, which includes the need to be accepted by peers and can include the need to be accepted by a partner. The fourth need is esteem. This refers to ?the desire for a positive self-image and to receive attention, recognition, and appreciation from others? (Daft 1997, p. 530).
The final need is self-actualization. This refers to the need to reach one?s potential and feel self-fulfillment. This consideration of Maslow?s hierarchy of needs shows that physical needs are only a small portion of all needs, with psychological needs making up the three highest categories. The other important point relates to the way the needs are organized in a hierarchy. This means that the needs have an order of priority, where the lowest needs take priority first. However, this lowest need only takes priority when it is unfilled. That is, once a person has fulfilled their physiological needs, the second level of safety needs will then become the priority. In turn, once an individual has fulfilled both their physiological needs and their safety needs, belongingness needs will then become the priority. This means that the actual need a person is motivated to fulfill is dependent on their current level on the hierarchy.
The next important point is that a need refers to a general desire a person has and does not refer to a specific product. A want is more specific and is defined as ?the form taken by human needs as they are shaped by culture and individual experience? (Kotler, Armstrong, Brown, & Adam 1998, p. 6). For example, a person may need clothing. The specific type and brand of clothing they purchase will be shaped by their culture and by their own experiences and preferences. The next important term is demands. This is defined as ?human wants that are backed by buying power? (Kotler, Armstrong, Brown, & Adam 1998, p. 6). For example, an individual may want a convertible sports car and may have a specific product in mind. However, if they do not have the buying power to actually purchase the sports car, it remains a want and not a demand. These terms related to needs are all important to the consumer behavior model.
Consumer Needs and the Consumer Behavior Model
The central component of the consumer behavior model is that consumers recognize or become aware of a need or want. The need or want recognized is influenced both by the individual?s internal psychological factors and by external or social influences. The internal or psychological factors include: motivation, learning, attitude, personality (Perreault & McCarthy 2000, p. 123). Motivation is closely linked to need because an unsatisfied need is what motivates an individual to take action. This was described in the discussion on Maslow?s hierarchy of needs, with it especially significant that the unfulfilled need is what will take priority at any given time. Learning is closely linked to the process of needs becoming wants because it helps determine the form that the need takes. For example, consider that an individual needs a new vehicle. They have previously owned a Ford and a Honda. With the Honda, they had constant mechanical problems and found that repairs and servicing were expensive. With the Ford, they had few mechanical problems and found that servicing was inexpensive.
From this past experience, the individual has learned that Ford vehicles are reliable and inexpensive to run, while Honda vehicles are unreliable and expensive to run. Based on this, the individual who needs a vehicle is most likely to want a Ford vehicle, not a Honda vehicle. This illustrates how past experience influences an individual as their need become wants, either by making them want a certain product type or by making them not want a certain product type. This example also illustrates how attitudes influence the form that the need takes. In the example, the individual has developed a positive attitude about Ford and a negative attitude about Honda. These attitudes have then influenced the specific product that the individual desires. This process can also occur based on factors other than the individual?s personal experience with products. For example, another individual may have the attitude that Ford vehicles are for the average consumer and that Mercedes vehicles are for the elite buyer. If this individual considers himself as one of the elite, he may reject purchasing a Ford vehicle based on this perception. One of the important points is that the attitude is not based on the individual?s own experience with the product. Instead, it is based on their perception of the brand.
Attitudes can also be influenced by advertisements, other people?s opinions, and general opinion on the company that produces the products. The final psychological factor is personality and this may also affect the specific form the need takes. The other factors are the external factors and social influences. This includes the individual?s family situation. For example, a single individual seeking a vehicle will most likely have different wants than an individual who is married with four children. This is not only because the use of the product will change based on the individual?s family status, but also because priorities will differ. For example, in the case of the single individual, they may be focused primarily on themselves and the current time, and so choose to purchase an expensive and exclusive vehicle.
The married individual with four children may be more concerned about the future and may factor in the other people in the family that need to be cared for. In this case, the desire for an elite vehicle may be overwhelmed by the need to do what is best for the entire family. For these reasons, the want may be a small second-hand vehicle. Other factors that influence the form the need takes include social status and culture. Another important consideration is reference groups, with these having the potential to influence both needs and wants. For example, a teenager may develop a need to own a certain brand of item because their social group accepts that item. This analysis shows the aspects that influence the development of needs and wants. The next part of the consumer behavior model refers to what consumers do about these recognized needs and wants.
The first important point is that the individual will only take action on the need or want if they have purchasing power. When this happens, the need or want becomes a demand the individual starts the buying process. The first part of this process is a search for information. In some cases, the individual will already have developed a specific want and will seek information on a specific product. In other cases, the individual will only have identified a general need and will seek specific products that can provide for that need. In either case, the individual will search for information, compare available products, select the best solution, and purchase the product that represents the best solution. However, it is also important to note that this process is not necessarily an extensive one. In fact, one source notes that ?most consumer problems and the resulting decisions involve very little effort on the part of the consumer? (Neal, Quester, & Hawkins 1999, p. 1.15). This means that individuals will often not select the best possible solution, but will instead select the first solution that meets basic needs.
Application to Marketing
Now that needs and the consumer process have been described, it is important to consider how it can be applied to product marketing. The first important point is that a product needs to meet needs and wants. Perreault and McCarthy (2000, p. 111) note that trying to get consumers to act against their will is usually a waste of time, while trying to provide a product that consumers already have a need for is a much more effective strategy. This means that for any given product, it is necessary to know the need or want that the product is meeting. This information can then be used to design an effective marketing and promotional strategy.
It is also important to understand the underlying needs that a product is providing for and what factors determine the form that the need takes and the final purchase decision made. This includes considering what factors consumers consider as they make a purchase decision, what information consumers seek, and why consumers make a final purchase decision. Belch & Belch (1999, p. 118) note that consumers make purchase decisions based on ?a matching of purchase motives with attributes or characteristics of brands under consideration.? This makes it important for marketers to understand what characteristics consumers are seeking, so these characteristics can either be included in products, or made apparent to consumers if they are already present.


References
Belch, G.E., & Belch, M.A. (1999). Advertising and Promotion. Boston, MA: McGraw Hill.

Daft, R.L. (1997). Management. Fort Worth, TX: Dryden Press.

Kotler, P., Armstrong, G., Brown, L, & Adam, S. (1998). Marketing. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Kotler, P., Chandler, P., Gibbs, R., & McColl, R. (1999). Marketing. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Neal, C., Quester, P., & Hawkins, D. (1999). Consumer Behavior: Implications for Marketing Strategy. Boston, MA: Irwin/McGraw-Hill.

Perreault, W.D., & McCarthy, E.J. (2000). Essentials of Marketing: A Global-Managerial Approach. New York: McGraw-Hill.


6. Marketing Mix
An integrated marketing communications, or IMC approach, involves ?coordinating the various promotional elements and other marketing activities that communicate with a firm?s customers? (Belch & Belch 1999, p. 8). The most significant point is that all communication and promotional activities should be integrated so that a clear and consistent message is communicated to customers. This involves clearly defining the message, considering the various ways that it will be communicated, and considering the promotional activities that will help to communicate the message.
Before the communication and promotional strategies can be considered, it is first necessary to define the actual message. The first consideration is that the business environment is rapidly changing and is increasingly competitive. With this in mind, organizations need to ensure the best use of every dollar spent, including money spent on promotional efforts. For these promotional dollars to achieve the most value, they need to be aimed at long-term success, rather than short-term sales. A related consideration is that rapid change means that even the latest products and benefits can quickly become dated. Therefore, if a company selects this strategy and focuses on promoting specific benefits of a certain product, this benefits highlighted may only be significant to consumers for a short time. The company will then constantly be trying to find new ways to benefit the consumer, with this an ongoing exercise that will be costly both in terms of the money spent advertising, as well as time and resources utilized in constant research.
The alternative to this approach is to focus on communicating a message that represents the organization overall and will expand to cover more than one product and will be expansive enough to cover products as they evolve. This strategy will be one of branding, where the company name will be promoted as a brand that represents general qualities important to consumers. King (1991, p. 4) describes the effectiveness of this strategy where he notes that it is becoming especially difficult for organizations to gain a real and sustainable advantage over competitors, with the best way to gain a long-term advantage being to position the company as a positive brand in the minds of consumers. For these reasons, the IMC approach will be designed to provide a consistent message about the company, rather than a message about a specific product.
The specific message that will be communicated to consumers is that the company understands consumers and is there specifically for the consumer. This message has been selected based on the observation that consumers are becoming increasingly demanding. This message has also been selected based on the observation that consumers have more and more options in the marketplace and so can often afford to be selective and only purchase products that meet their specific needs. This makes it necessary for the company to focus on customer needs when developing products. The strategy communicating loyalty to the customer will help to ensure that the efforts have ongoing positive results by creating a strong link between the company and the consumer. This is intended to create a high level of customer equity. One source states that ?marketing strategy should focus on extending loyal customer lifetime value,? with brand management serving as a major marketing tool? (Kotler, Armstrong, Brown, & Adam, p. 359). This is the approach that will be taken, with the message intended to build the brand name and produce loyal customers. As customers remain loyal, the company will be able to understand their needs even better and continue to adapt products to meet their needs. This will create an effective long-term strategy and provide an ongoing competitive advantage that competitors will find difficult to duplicate.
The next consideration is how the message will be communicated. One of the most important points in this case is that the message will be communicated by what is done as much as by what is said. For example, there is little point advertising that the organization cares about its customers and wants to be there for them if it is difficult for customers to contact the organization. This is especially true in cases where the customer has problems or complaints. This makes it important for the organization to consider its policies and ensure that they are consistent with the message being delivered to customers. Kotler, Chandler, Gibbs, & McColl (1999, p. 507) note the importance of consistency between how an organization acts and what it claims about itself, emphasizing that the consumer will generally develop perceptions based on actions rather than claims. For this reason, the organization will need to consider all interactions with consumers and work to make sure they are consistent with what consumers want. This will involve considering all aspects of the marketing mix including product, pricing, and place. For example, the product should be available at the place most convenient for consumers, have pricing terms best suited to consumers, and have features suited to consumers.
The next consideration is the promotion strategy for the product, taking into account that it needs to support the message that the company understands consumers and is there specifically for the consumer. One method that will be used is personal selling because it promotes the message being communicated and will also help ensure that the company can continue to meet consumer needs. Personal selling promotes the message because a one-on-one relationship between the company and the consumer reinforces that the company is there for the consumer. This is preferred to other methods where the consumer is not able to develop a personal relationship with the company. Perreault & McCarthy (2000, p. 297) note that this method allows salespeople to adapt because they receive immediate feedback from consumers. This ability to adapt to the consumers needs will help to communicate the message. In addition, salespeople will gain feedback and develop an understanding of customers. This information can then be used to develop products and services to meet the consumer needs and preferences identified.
While personal selling has many benefits, it must also be noted that it is an expensive promotional method. Perreault & McCarthy (2000, p. 297) note that for this reason, personal selling is typically combined with other promotional methods, especially mass selling. This approach will be used in the promotional strategy, with the information gained in personal selling used to develop advertising strategies that appeal to specific segments of the market. To promote the idea that the company is there for consumers, it is important that the advertisements are not mass advertisements designed to appeal to a wide, but non-specific section of the population. Instead, the advertisements should be targeted to appeal directly to targeted consumers. This will involve promoting the benefits specific to the targeted consumers, while showing that the company understands the needs of the targeted market. Another important consideration is the media used for advertising. This will utilize direct-mail advertising since this is the most effective way to reach small, defined target markets. This approach will also help to create a relationship between the consumer and the company. Even though this is not a person-to-person relationship, it is a one-on-one relationship in that the consumer is receiving advertising specifically to them.
Public relations will be another important component of the promotions plan. Belch & Belch (1999, p. 516) describe the functions of public relations as including: raising awareness; informing and educating; gaining understanding; and building trust. These will all be important aspects in communicating the overall message. Raising awareness can help to establish that the company is one that cares for its customers. Informing and educating will play an important role because it is a way that the company can add value for consumers. This can occur because the company can offer its knowledge to consumers. This will provide a benefit to consumers, while also reinforcing that the company understands its products and its customers. Public relations can also help the consumer gain understanding of the company and its message. This is especially important because there is a limit to the believability of advertising messages, with most consumers natural skeptical of anything stated in an advertisement. Effective public relations can overcome this hurdle because the message is not presented in an advertising format and will not be perceived as trying to indicate any specific message. In this way, an overall message about the company can be communicate, but in a subtle way where the consumer is able to come to their own conclusion. Finally, an effective public relations strategy will help to build trust in the company. This will be important in developing a strong relationship with the consumer.
The final consideration is how to measure the effectiveness of the integrated marketing communication strategy. Since the strategy is aimed at building relationships with customers and gaining customer loyalty, the main measurement will involve determining the customer return rates. With personal selling providing direct contact with customers, this will be able to be measured and reported by sales staff without the requirement for complicated research activities. It will also be important to utilize concept testing, which is used to ?explore the targeted consumer?s response to a potential ad or campaign? (Belch & Belch 1999, p. 292). Concept testing will be utilized via focus groups to determine the response of consumers and to ensure that the advertisements and public relations activities communicate the desired message. Finally, surveys of individuals in the target group will be completed periodically to determine how the company is perceived by the target market.













References

Belch, G.E., & Belch, M.A. (1999). Advertising and Promotion. Boston, MA: McGraw Hill.

King, S. (1991). Brand-building in the 1990?s. Journal of Marketing Management, 7, pp. 3-13.

Kotler, P., Armstrong, G., Brown, L, & Adam, S. (1998). Marketing. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Kotler, P., Chandler, P., Gibbs, R., & McColl, R. (1999). Marketing. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Perreault, W.D., & McCarthy, E.J. (2000). Essentials of Marketing: A Global-Managerial Approach. New York: McGraw-Hill.

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