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Effective Marketing Strategies for Improved Performance of Manufacturing Companies.

CHAPTER ONE

1.0       INTRODUCTION

1.1       BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

In Nigeria where the importance of marketing is yet to be fully appreciated, people talk of  marketing  their products as  if  they  are referring to a particular problem. A successful marketing strategy must tell an organization where they would want to be on a long-term basis, which is why it is often said that marketing strategy is a continuous process.   It must rest on a carefully but well planned action, Baker (1995: 17).

The strategy aspect of the plan should be based on what is known of the competitor’s strength and weakness, the physical characteristics of the  battle  ground,  the  friendly  or  hostile  sentiment  of  those  who occupied the territory, and of course, the nature of resources available to the organization, Stanton (1982: 35).

In the business organization, there is safely no activity where the marketer must not therefore make the right decision about the four components of the marketing mix – price, product, place/distribution and promotion through the employment of marketing strategy.  These key components must be co-ordinated and moved into a unified effective strategy if the product must perform well in the market, Kotler (1997:315)

The analog to business strategies is direct and useful in business and in marketing; the terrain is the market place in particular and economic, political, social and technological environment in general. The resources are personnel with wide-ranging skills and expertise as well as factory laboratories, transportation system, financial resource and the corporate reputation, Henry (1984: 72)

More so, depending on the nature of business, strategies may have other dimensions as well. At the  heart of any business strategy is marketing strategy. Businesses exist to deliver products to the markets to  an  extent  that they  serve  this  purpose efficiently through  profit maximization.

1.2  STATEMENT OF PROBLEM:

Effective marketing strategies have contributed immensely towards the achievement of. post purchase satisfaction, on the side of customers who -make use, of a given product in the market. Well established and implemented marketing strategies have played great roles in the success of business in Nigeria.

Every company which intends to improve on its marketing has to create good  marketing  strategies  for  its  efficient  and  effective  operations. These strategies if effectively used should increase the sales and profitability of such company/ and will also enable the  company to achieve its stated goals/objectives, Nwaizugbo (2004:102)

Various products – line produced by Lever Brothers Plc such as cream and lotion products, Omo detergent, baby care products, oral care products, hair reiaxer, close-up tooth paste and many others have been contributing a lot towards the success of the firm in recent years, due to efficient and effective marketing strategies designed by them, and the maintenance of market share due to good penetration of the products in the market. However, for some times, Lever Brothers Plc has been experiencing poor sales of its products in the market place as a result of the followings;

–   Unfavourable external business environment.

–       Inability Of the products to face other competing ones in the market place.

–   Customers’ reaction against repeat – purchase

As a result of these afore-mentioned problems the researcher intends    to find   solutions   to   the   problems   and   offer recommendations.

1.3   OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY:

Most texts, studies, and write-ups have in the past dwelled solely on the marketing concept and 4ps of marketing with little or no attention given to marketing  strategies.  As  a result  of this  disregard,  this  study focuses attention on the following:

  1. 1. To find out the major causes of poor sales of Lever Brothers products in the market place.
  2. 2. To identify, marketing strategies to be used in order to increase the sales and profitability of the prod
  3. 3. To determine whether the qualities of different products sold by LBN has helped to increase its sales.
  4. 4. To determine whether the pricing strategies used by Lever Brothers Plc have helped to increase the sales of its products in the market place.
  5. 5. To ascertain whether the chain of distribution strategy adopted by LBN has helped to increase the sales of its prod
  6. 6. To find out if the promotional strategies used by LBN have contributed to an increase in the sales of its products in the market place.

1.4       RESEARCH QUESTIONS

Can product strategies adopted by LBN Plc helped to increase it sales?

Is there any relationship between strategies and marketing research?

Can pricing strategies applied by LBN bring about increment in products sales.

1.5   FORMULATION OF HYPOTHESES:

H0: The product strategies adopted by LBN Plc have not helped to increase it sales.

H1: product strategies adopted by LBN Plc have helped to increase its sales.

H0:    The pricing strategies applied by LBN have not helped to increase its products sales.

H2:  The pricing strategies applied by LBN have helped to increase “its product’s sales.

H3:    The  distribution  strategies  of  LBN  have  not  helped  to  ensure availability of their products in the market place.

H0:    The  overall  promotional  strategies  used±»y  LBN  have helped  to increase its products’ sales.

H4:   The overall promotional strategies used by LBN have not t helped to increase its products sales.

H0:   The overall marketing strategies adopted by LBN have not helped to increase the sales of its products.

H5:    The overall, marketing strategies adopted by LBN have helped to increase the sales of its products.

1.6  SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY:

This study is carried out because it was intended to help in solving a problem(s), and if the problem is solved, it will benefit those who are affected by it.

It  can  be  seen  from  the  problems that  Lever  Brothers  Plc’s  major difficulties are identified to be marketing strategies. It is then hoped that this study will help the company to adopt better marketing strategies that will improve the overall marketing performance of products and equally enable them to realize their business objectives as well as utilize all their opportunities.

In addition to this, the recommendations made would provide initial steps in major decision areas facing the company, such areas includes; decision on the determination of .the present marketing strategies that can be used by LBN to improve the performance of its products in the market place, and also for vital expansion of business activities.

In addition, the study will enable the readers to know that the success of a business depends on good marketing strategies that will promote good image for the company and as well increase their sales revenue.

It will also widen the marketer’s knowledge about the various marketingstrategies available and how they can be effectively applied to any company’s products so as to improve the performance of their business.

It will equally aid LBN Plc immensely by providing them with the appropriate marketing strategies to be adopted in making high sales over.

Above all, the study will help other people such as businessmen, industrialists and so on to know the value of marketing strategies and how they can be effectively used to attract new market and also win more market share from the existing market.

1.7   SCOPE OF THE STUDY:

The study covers the different marketing strategies with regard to the 4p’s for improved performance of Lever Brothers’ products with special emphasis to management, distributors and customers of Lever Brothers Plc Products.

1.8   DEFINITION OF TERMS:

Market: Buyers or customers.

Marketing Strategies: A consistent, appropriate, and feasible set of principles through which a particular company hopes to achieve its long – run customer satisfaction and profitability objectives in a particular competitive environment.

Market Leader:         A  firm  in-an  industry  with  the  largest market share, it usually heads other firms in price changes, new product   introductions,    distribution   coverage   and promotion spending.

Market  Challenger:  A  runner-up  firm  in  an  industry  that  is fighting hard to withstand the leader by increasing its market share.

Positioning:     The  art  of  fitting  a  product  to  one  or  more segment of the broad market in such a way as to set it apart from competition and optimize opportunity for greatest sales and profit.

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