Marketing Management
Target & Positioning.

Submitted To: By: Ms. Neeru Garg Faculty, TIAS

Submitted Mr. Ashutosh Gupta Enrol. No. 01517003909 MBA 2nd Semester.

What is the Target Market?
The country's consumers can be divided into so many different consumer groups. Based on which consumer groups they lie in, the consumers will have different needs. Also they will find different things that appeal to them. So before we launch a marketing campaign, we need to identify which set of people does our business cater to? What we mean by this is, that we need to know who are our customers? What kind of life do they live? Who influences their buying decision? What kinds of media are they exposed to? How much purchasing power do they have? Etc. Knowing this information, we can target our marketing campaign to appeal especially to this group of customers we have chosen. Many a times, we may find that the product or service we are offering is consumed by not only one group of people. We may find that our product has many varied uses and hence has many varied possible consumers. Because of this we may want to choose more than one group of people as our target market. DO NOT DO THIS! I repeat DO NOT DO THIS! Our marketing strategy will fail if we try to be everything to everybody. When we make a marketing strategy we have to choose only one group of people and design our marketing strategy so that it appeals to the group we have selected. If we have many groups of people to choose from, choose only the group of people that we can best cater too and will offer the best opportunities to grow. For example, if we are a small firm that makes women’s perfumes, our target market could be teenage girls, housewives, rich women who can afford to spend highly on perfumes and other such accessories etc. We could choose any one of these customer groups as our target market. Suppose we choose the rich women group then our marketing plan will be designed to appeal to rich women. The price of our

perfume will be high. Our advertisements will be designed to appeal to rich women etc. These advertisements cannot simultaneously appeal to winger middle class women also. If we come up with a marketing strategy to appeal to more than one target group of customers, our strategy will not be effective. Our sales will be eaten away by specialist products or specialist marketing strategies. Just consider the case of shampoo. If some one is looking for a shampoo to deal with their dandruff problem, they are more likely to buy a shampoo which says "Anti-dandruff shampoo" than a shampoo that says, "Hair shine, Hair strength and Anti-Dandruff" shampoo. The thing to understand is that the first step to making a marketing strategy is to select the “target market”, i.e for whom the marketing campaign is to be designed.

How to identify who our Target Market is?
What we have to do is run a little research about all our existing customers. If we are a retailing unit, we could find out the people who purchase form us. Once we have a general idea about the people who purchase from us, we need to classify them into different groups. Finally we will have a general idea about the different kinds of customers who buy from us. Finally, we have to choose one of these groups as our target market. We may choose the biggest group or we may choose the group with the greatest buying power etc. and decide on it to be our target group. Assuming we are a small business who makes shampoos. We may classify our customers as people who buy our shampoo to strengthen their hair and prevent hair from falling or buy our shampoo to reduce their dandruff or people who buy our shampoo because it is made up of natural oils which appeals to them etc.

We should identify how large these different groups are and which group we are comfortable with. Which group of people our shampoo will really be able to satisfy. Once we choose that group we have our target market. Then the next step is to design our marketing mix to appeal to this group of customers. Now the question is, How to do this? The marketing mix is said to consist of the four P’s: 1. Product 2. Price 3. Place 4. Promotion

When talking about the product in marketing we do not only mean the core product. We mean the product and all the things associated with it. These are:
• • • • •

The core or basic constituent Associated features The brand name The package The label

To understand how all the above stated things affect the product, let us consider the case of toilet soap. Toilet soap by itself is not a very glamorous product. However, companies rarely actually advertise the soap. They advertise the smell, the colorful packing, the oval shape, the feeling of freshness etc. associated with the soap. Using all these features they make the soap very suited to appeal to their target audience. Using all these features they make their product stand out with respect to the rest of the products in the same category.

Using all these frills and making changes in the core product is called product management. Product management is done mainly for "positioning" the product or making the product stand out in the target customers mind. This brings us to a very important concept in the modern marketing environment called "positioning".

What is "Positioning"?
Positioning is the fight for the consumers mind. The different marketers want to secure a place in the mind of the target consumer. To do this the marketers use "positioning". What this means is that the marketers want their product to come to mind when the consumer thinks about purchasing that product type. For example: The marketers of "Liril" soap want the people to think "Liril" when they think soap. The marketers of "Colgate" want the consumers to think "Colgate" when they think toothpaste etc. In India, "Xerox" is what comes to mind when people think of "photo-copying". "Colgate" comes to the mind of people when they think toothpaste. However, now with intensive competition things are changing. Positioning a product in the minds of the consumer is becoming harder. However, positioning is going to play a very important role in marketing in an overly competitive environment. If we have a particular product or service, then we want people to think of us when they think of buying the kind of product or service we sell. In India there are few stores that hold a strong positioning in the mind of the consumers. In other countries, there are special stores where we can go only to go to do our laundry. There are special stores where we can go only to "Xerox". There are special stores that are dedicated only for the buying of candles, perfumes etc. These stores have a strong positioning in the minds of the consumers. When the consumer thinks

candles he goes to the candles store. When the consumer thinks "Xerox" he goes to the copying stores. In India we have a lot of general stores. The "Baniya" shop has everything in it. There are few specialized stores. There are specialized "Hardware shops" or in the whole sale market there are whole shops dedicated to the selling of one item like "ropes" etc. However these stores are not everywhere and their positioning in the mind of the consumer is not very strong. Besides this, there are many specialized stores that are given vague names that make it hard for them to be positioned strongly in the mind of the consumer. For example: a hardware store might be given a name "Murarilal And Sons". This makes it unclear to the consumer what the store sells unless he is given the reference of the store or visits the store himself. This might have been okay when the competition was not very large. However, as the competition increases, if a store aims to get new customers, it has to change its name to a name that represents what the store is about. If this is not done, all the new business will go to stores that are well positioned in the minds of the consumers. If we are a business selling a product in an already saturated segment of the market like toothpaste or face creams etc. we have to position our product in the minds of our consumers cleverly. For example, in the case of fairness creams the first thing that comes to the consumers mind is generally “Fair and Lovely”. “Fair and lovely” is very well positioned in the minds of the consumers. Lunching a product to change this position of “Fair and Lovely” in the minds of the consumers may be hard. However, if we position our fairness cream in the minds of the consumers on the basis of some unique selling point then maybe we might have a place in the mind of the consumer. For example: If our advertisement says that ours is a fairness cream specially designed for oily skin then we have a position in the minds of the consumer. If a consumer with oily skin thinks about a fairness cream, they will think about our cream.

Consider the case of Dominoes Pizza. They have positioned themselves in the minds of the consumers as “fast home delivery of pizza under 30 minutes”. Because of this “Pizza Hut” has become the place to go and eat pizza but “Dominoes” is what we think of when we think home delivery of pizza. This is what positing is all about. It is all about Finding and creating a place in the customers mind. Positioning has to be specific. The more specific, the better will the positioning be.

For example, consider three stores:
• • •

A huge shopping complex that also has a footwear department. A store specially dedicated to footwear. A store specially dedicated to women’s footwear.

If a woman was to think about buying new shoes and she knew about these above stated options, then she would most likely go to the third store. That is the store that will come to her mind when she thinks about buying shoes. People are more likely to trust specialists than generalists. If we are to have an open heart surgery, who would we trust, a general surgeon or a specialist heart surgeon? This is what positioning is all about. Making the consumers think of us when they want something we are selling. The best way to achieve this is to clearly differentiate ourselves from our competitors in what we are offering and clearly tell the consumer exactly what we are offering.

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