Assessment 3: Marketing plan for a sustainable offering
Assessment Format Learning outcomes Grading indicator
Weight Length/ duration Due
Project Individual 1, 3, 4 Graded 40% 1800 words 2 October 2020
Length: 1800 words, excludes executive summary, List of References and Appendices. Note that an Introduction and Conclusion is not required.
Submission: Word document to be submitted through Turnitin under Assessment Tasks
You need to build a marketing plan for a sustainable product (good or service) for an existing organisation. The organisation can be large, small, not for profit, local or international. However the product (good or service) needs to be fictitious – you need to create a completely new product or service or idea for the organisation.
Marketing is pervasive in everyday life. At all stages of their life cycle (from raw material, production, consumption to end-of-life), market offerings can cause adverse environmental and social impacts (Maxwell, Sheate, & van der Vorst, 2006).
As you have learned in Topic 1, marketing is all about “creating, communicating, delivering and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners and society at large” (American Marketing Association cited in your text, Lamb et al. 2016, p. 3).
Therefore, the aim of this assessment is for you to identify a problem and to contribute a solution to this problem through the use of appropriate marketing and creative problem-solving (CPS) tools.
You will develop:
(1) a concept for a new or improved sustainable offering – discuss with your tutor if you need any clarification around this, and
(2) a marketing plan for the proposed offering to ensure it has the greatest level of success.
What is a sustainable offering?
In Topic 3 a sustainable offering is a product and/or service which is ‘sustainable in terms of achieving a balance between environmental protection, social equity and economic prosperity throughout its life cycle, while still meeting other key requirements, e.g. quality, technical feasibility and cost’(Maxwell et al., 2006).
Another key requirement is, of course, that the offering provides customer value. This means that the consumer’s perceived product benefits (i.e. function, social, affective, epistemic, aesthetic, hedonic, situational, holistic and sustainable) need to be greater than the consumer’s perceived costs (monetary, time, risk, human energy) (Lai, 1995).
The key ‘sustainable’ benefits for each of the three triple-bottom line elements are:
• Economic – cost reductions from eco-efficiencies; higher margins for same/reduced productivity
• Environmental – material efficiencies; energy efficiencies; waste/pollution reduction
• Social – strategies that providing health and safety benefits to stakeholders, such as consumers, suppliers, and recipients of donations (in-kind and financial) from the organisation.
Your new or improved sustainable offering may be a consumer good, industrial good or a service.
If it involves a physical product, your proposed change can occur at any stage of the product’s lifecycle, i.e. extraction, manufacturing, distribution, usage or disposal. However, you will still need to predict and decide how the change will help meet your customer’s needs while generating a profit for your business.
What is a new or improved sustainable offering?
Most products and services have the potential to be sustainable. Your sustainable offering may involve a technical change to a product – either minor (incremental; continuous) or major (radical; discontinuous. It must involve some degree of newness or change in marketing (relative to the perceiver). Hence, three types of sustainable offerings are possible:
a. an existing sustainable offering capable of being marketed more effectively (change in marketing, e.g. packaging, advertising, minor product modification).
For example a social enterprise such as Thank You introduces recycled plastic bottles for their Thank You water.
b. an existing non-sustainable offering capable of being redesigned for sustainability (incremental technical innovation and change in marketing).
For example when Colgate introduced their toothbrushes made from bamboo to reduce the use of plastic.
c. a new offering with a key sustainability benefit that overcomes an existing or latent ‘problem’ (radical technical innovation and new marketing).
For example when Coca Cola introduced a product with stevia to address the societal problem of excess consumption of sugar.
Please state all necessary assumptions and claims you have made about the organisation behind the sustainable offering. Identify your assumptions and claims clearly, e.g. by adding “(fictitious)” or “(assumption)” to each one.
Please set-out your work using the headings below.
Executive summary (5%)
This is a synopsis of the overall marketing plan. On about one page, outline the major content areas and recommendations covered in your plan. Be sure to mention the business name and the brand name of the market offering.
1. Situation analysis (15%) – 200 words
Draw on Topic 2:
• Background to the business
• Environmental analysis (macro and micro)
• Product analysis: outline of the new sustainable offering
• Market and customer analysis for the new offering.
2. Objectives (draw on Topics 2 and 7) (10%) – 80 words
State the financial, marketing and other objectives you would like the sustainable market offering to achieve. They need to be SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound). Present your objectives in bullet points with a short explanation, using the following headings:
• Financial objectives (e.g. sales, net profits p.a., ROI)
• Marketing objectives (e.g. market share, consumer awareness, number of dealers)
• Sustainability-related objectives, e.g. ecological (waste reduction), social/community (awareness of or participation in sustainability projects).
3. Target market (draw on Topic 6) (10%) – 100 words
Recommend a target market using the four bases of segmentation.
Support your recommendation for selecting this particular target market, that is, why does this target market have the biggest potential?
4. Marketing strategies – 1, 000 to 1,200 words
This section should outline the broad marketing strategies that will be implemented to achieve the objectives for your sustainable market offering. Cover the following:
4.1. Positioning (Topic 6) (5%)
• Develop a clear positioning statement for your sustainable market offering, i.e. how will it provide differentiated value for the target market
4.2. Product/service – market offering (draw on Topic 8) (15%)
• Cover the following:
o Nature of the offer – what combination of good, service and experience
o Level – core, actual and augmented product
o Type – industrial or consumer good (convenience, shopping, speciality or unsought)
o Unique selling proposition (USP) or sustainable competitive advantage
o Detail your recommendations concerning branding, packaging, labelling
Optional additional product-related strategies for service offerings (as per Topic 8):
4.2.1. People (Internal marketing; customer service)
Explain how you will:
• select, train, staff
• manage customer expectations through service providers/staff.
4.2.2. Process (systems; procedures)
Explain what systems you will use to support the staff to deliver the service.
4.2.3. Physical evidence (Internal marketing; customer service)
Explain how you will offer tangible cues about your service:
• exterior facilities (e.g. building, parking) and interior facilities (eg light, sound)
• space/function, e.g. store layout
• signs, symbols, e.g. staff uniforms, store signage, brochures
4.3. Price (draw on Topic 9) (10%)
• Explain how you will set the price for your offering. Your pricing should be consistent with your financial objectives and address each of the following steps:
1. Pricing goals – profit-oriented, sales-oriented or status-quo oriented
2. Forecast demand, costs and profits
3. Pricing strategy – penetration, skimming or status quo.
4.4. Placement / distribution (draw on Topic 10) (10%)
• Explain how you will get your offering to the final consumer. Consider the following decisions in your discussion:
o Channel structure – direct or indirect
o Level of distribution intensity – intensive, selective or exclusive
o Logistics services – the desired level of supply chain service, which maximises service yet minimises cost (e.g. value-added services, product transformation).
4.5. Promotion/ marketing communications (draw on Topic 11) (10%)
• Explain how you will apply the integrated marketing communications (IMC) concept to the promotion of your offering. Your discussion should cover:
o Communication goals (to perform, persuade or remind)
o Message design – should be consistent, unified and customer-focused
o Promotional mix (advertising, public relations, personal selling, sales promotion, direct marketing, digital marketing, other such as product placement).
Note sections 5, 6 and 7 are worth 5% together – 200 words.
5. Marketing implementation (draw on Topics 2 and 7)
Develop an action plan for key tasks related to implementing each strategy element (product, price, place, promotion):
• What will be done? Link each activity to discussion within Section 4 on Marketing strategies.
• When will it be done? (target completion date)
• Who will do it? (responsibility)
• How much will it cost? (expenditure)
This can be presented in a table format.
6. Budget (draw on Topics 2 and 7)
Develop an approximate budget for the time horizon of your plan (1, 3 or 5 years) covering the following elements:
• Revenue: Forecast sales volume in units multiplied by the average price (link to 4.3 on Price)
• Less: Cost of production (link to 4.3 on Price)
• Less: Cost of distribution (link to 4.4 on Placement)
• Less: Marketing costs (link to action plan in Section 5.)
• Projected profit (check that this appears in your Executive Summary).
7. Evaluation and control (draw on Topics 2 and 7)
Explain how marketing activities will be monitored to ensure success. Give specific directions as to who will be responsible for evaluation and how it will be carried out. In particular, explain how you will use the following (and/or other) metrics to evaluate your marketing performance against your marketing objectives:
• Financial (e.g. sales, profitability, ROI)
o Consumer attitudes (e.g. awareness, knowledge, attitude, satisfaction)
o Consumer behaviour (number of new consumers, conversions)
o Market (market share, market penetration)
o Relative to competitor (relative consumer satisfaction, perceived quality)
• Sustainability, i.e. social (awareness of or participation in sustainability projects) and environmental (e.g. carbon emissions, recycling of operational inputs and product, operational waste, consumer waste).
Include at least one in-text reference to the textbook (or equivalent) and an industry reference with corresponding full references in your List of References.
1. Application of marketing plan: Analysis of situations; engagement with theoretical concepts and applied/industry information: (90%):
Executive summary (10%)
1) Situation analysis (10%)
2) Objectives (5%)
3) Target market (10%)
4) Marketing strategies:
a) Positioning (5%)
b) Product/service (15%)
c) Price (10%)
d) Place/distribution (10%)
e) Promotion/marketing communications (10%)
5) Marketing implementation
7) Evaluation and control
2. Written communication including referencing (10%):
• Effective organisation, so that the report is easily understood, coherent, consistent and visually appealing.
• Visuals need to be relevant and explained in the text.
• Be sure to identify and apply relevant marketing concepts and include additional industry information relating to your particular context.
• Acknowledge/reference correctly ALL sources – scholarly and applied/industry – in-text and in a List of References (LOR).
Where can I get more help with this assessment?
As Tutors and Unit Assessor we will support you throughout your project. Your tutor is also available to guide in your weekly tutorials. Also check into the Discussion Board and regular email announcements on any news.