CASE NO: 1
VENKY’S OF VENKATESHWARA HATCHERIES
Venkateshwara Hatcheries which went public recently is one of the most modern plants in poultry business in Asia. They have 60 p.c. market share of chicken marketed in the country. Dr. B.V. Rao of Venkateshwara Hatcheries expired in 1996. His daughter Anuradha Desai is now the Chairperson and M.D. of VHL. In the beginning they had an Executive Director Gulam Harjanwalla who professionalized chicken marketing. Sajid Peerbhoy’s Speer ad agency was chosen. The brief given to Speer was “to market raw chicken in the form of a full bird. Further, to market legs. To market legs and breast. To market curried pieces. And half-bird.”
The company also planned to market ready-to-fly pre-spiced chicken and to operate a chain of fast-food outlets serving chicken fast food on the lines of McDonald’s.
Speer did some marketing research by focus group studies in Mumbai and then in Pune. The qualitative reseaci1 (QR) findings were followed by quantitative research.
The following summarises the findings.
Occasions to use chicken:
- On special occasions
- On Sundays
- As a special treat
- Cook it for guests
- First non-veg food to which vegetay1ans graduated.
- Each mother cherishes her own special recipe for a chicken dish. She prides herself on it.
The ideal chicken was: Freshly chicken.
The convenient option was: Frozen chicken.
The following are the demerits of the frozen chicken:
(a) It does not taste good.
(b) It does not cook fast.
(c) It requires a lot of water to cook.
The Inconveniences in getting fresh chicken were:
- It is more and more difficult to get it near-by.
- The search consumes time.
- It involves transportation cost.
On deep probing, the consumer psychology while buying fresh chicken was one of guilt and disgust. The birds look so cute, as they are young. Just a minute ago, they were alive. It is so awful. Those poor creatures! Imagine them alive one minute, and then being eaten the next. It is so difficult to get used to this process.
It is not necessary to remind about live chicken. It is not necessary to see and think about raw chicken, dressed or otherwise. The communication strategy should be to treat chicken as a vegetable. They are not to be shown alive or in their ugly raw dressed form. The client was led step-by-step and was supportive.
Though chicken has high standing as a special food, we have to make it an almost twice or thrice a week food item.
It was necessary to overcome the negative barrier to frozen food. In the market, fresh chicken was in fact frozen chicken vulnerable to bacterial contamination. The answer was a fact frozen chicken product. Venky’s chickens were chilled by a special process: blast freezing. The position taken was that of technological superiority. Venky’s unique freezing process makes it taste better and cook faster and melt quickly.
It was a special breed of chicken, that was extra delicious to eat. It scores over ordinary frozen chicken and even the freshly killed chicken. Brand Name In spite of the Agency’s reservations, the Venky’s was chosen as brand name, since it was the name of the M.D.’s son. The Agency had considered fifty other optional brand names. Marketing research showed Venky’s connoted a South Indian image and was associated with vegetarian food. There were also connections with Lord Venkateshwara.
These worked hard to ward off negatives:
‘Chicken so fresh, it simply melts in your mouth. Reason: Superior blast freezing process.”
“Chicken so fresh, it’s only minutes old.”
Promotion of Special Parts
The special parts were promoted as:
“The part you want are the parts you get.”
A simple mnemonic was used. Chicken was shown in a graphic from; one that did not turn off the house wife, and yet looked modern.
The colour scheme used was of yellow and red colours, being happy and bright food colours. These colours are appetising too.
For quick identification, a common symbol was used on all hoardings. ad material and at POP.
Success of the Launch
The launch created tremendous demand but the distribution was weak. There was the problem of spurious brands.
The company strengthened the distribution network later. However consumer supplies were diverted to institutional buyers leading to non-availability and spurious brands passing off as Venky’s.
The Agency advised premium pricing and quality policy. Instead, the company lowered the price. So many persons dealt with the Agency. Each questioned and disagreed with the thinking of earlier persons. Gulam, their E.D. left Venky’s. The number of out left were increased dramatically.
New Ad Agency
New agency was selected. It brought chicken again to a commodity position A good chicken that makes tasty chicken dishes). Emphasis on blast freezing was dropped. Emphasis on blast freezing was dropped. Raw chicken again appeared in the ads, contrary to research findings. Brand or product differentiation strategy was dropped. Instead, emphasis was on different recipes.
Venky’s is moving closer and closer to a commodity than a brand. It is fine as long as there is no competition. The company perhaps believes that no one has the backing or volume of production to be a threat to them. It is satisfied with a marginal price premium. Being a chicken monopoly, it can afford not to have a marketing cutting edge. The following is their present ad copy:
(a) Comment on the advertising strategy adopted previously and currently.
(b) Comment on branding of food products, and their promotion.
(c) Can you think of a different creative strategy for a product like chicken?
(a) The complete product knowledge is given in the above write-up. What do you think should be the copy platform for these products? Indicate the theme, the appeal and the buying motives.
(b) Indicate a suitable media mix for advertising these products. Give your reasoning.
CASE NO: 2
ALEMBIC CHEMICAL WORKS LTD.
DIRECT MAILINGS OF ALCEPHIN: THE LEGEND
The pharmaceutical companies have to do direct marketing by necessity as they cannot advertise ethical products in layman’s media for him, but are required to promote only to the medical profession. They produce fine visual aids and product literature which could either be sent as direct mailings to the medical profession or can be delivered to them through medical representatives.
The Living Legends
What does one say about Lata Mangeshkar? That she has dominated the Indian film music scene for almost four decades and promises to do so for atleast another decade? That she became a legend in her own life time? That here is a musical genius which comes about just once in many centuries? One could say all these things and yet be merely repeating what has been said a million times over. And yet there is so much more to one is capturing one more vital as poet which one did not realize had existed in her. Such is the quality of her singing.
Very few of those who see her at the pinnacle of her success realise the amount of effort, hard work end deprivation that have gone into building the facade which is so enviable. Born In Induce on September 28, 1929. Late Mangeshkar is the eldest in family of four sister, and a brother, all of whom have made a name in the field of music. Daughter of the noted Marathi stage actor-singer Master Dinnanath Mangeshkar, Lata revealed her musical genius at the tender age of five. Her first guru wee her own father and she avidly followed his musical stage plays.
Late’s mother Mai Mangeshkar ha, one vivid memory of Lata as a child. It would seen that the young Late, one day, was singing a song from one of her father’s. plays when she bumped against something. All rushed toward the unconscious child and tried to revive her. When she came to, however, Lata continued with the singing of the song as if nothing had happened. This dedication to music led to her debut on stage.
However, her father’s productive shadow was not to last for long. On April 24, 1942 Master Dinanath passed away reportedly telling her “Except for the tanpura in the corner and these notebooks filled with classical music and songs and God’s blessings. I have nothing elseto give you. “The family’spenury compelled Lata to sign a contract with MasterVinayak’s Huna Pictures as an actress-singer. In the same year,1942, she made her debut as a playback singer with Vasant Joglekar’s Kia Hasool in Marathi under the baton of shripad Nevrekar .But taking up a career as a playback singer was still impossible. She continued with her acting career, acting in Pahili Mangeshgar (Marathi 42) Chimna Sansar (Marathi43) More Bal (Marathi 43) Gajadhan (Marathi 44) Badi Mao (Hindi 45) and Mandir (Hindi 48) With Mandir Lata seemed to have reached a dead end. Mandir was Master Vinayak’s last film, after which he passed away. She was no great shakes as an actress and her career in playback singing had not really taken off. Two Years earlier she had made her debut in Hindi playback singing with Vasant Joglekar’s Aap Ki Sewa Afein under the baton of composor Dutta Dawjekar but nothing much had happened. However, stars served more benevolent. Ghulam Haider, who was then acoring the music for Majboor and who had seen and heard lata in the early. Forties, signed her up to sing a song for the film. Within a week of singing this song. Lata became the talk of the music world and was signed up by three other musical giants. Khemchand Prakash for Mahal.
The most important thing is to make the mundane promotion outstanding by creative ideas. Promotion of S.S. Oberoi came out with a set of 10 four-page folders for Alcephin based on the theme ‘The Living Legends.’ The folders are extremely well-executed – well-designed and printed. The graphics and typography and illustrations are appealing. The idea is outstanding. Ten living legends are chosen and include names like Satyajit Ray (since then deceased), Mother Teresa, Baba Ainte, Lata Mangeshkar, Sunil Gavaskar, R.K. Laxman, Abdul Kalain and Shivram Karanth. Each folder deals exclusively with one legend. The selection covers a wide cross-section of interests.
Each folder is well-researched. It brings out the circumstances that inspired the magic in each of them. It becomes a collector’s series. The centre-spread has the manufacturer’s plug. A short write-up on the characteristics of Alcephin and the line ‘The Legend Among Antibiotics.’ It is not intrusive at all. Yet it is effective.
(a) Which other businesses/products can be suitable candidates for direct marketing? What promotional techniques can be employed?
(b) Please do some research of your own on direct mailings of pharmaceutical companies. What are your reactions?
(c) Put on your thinking cap. Identify a there for a campaign of one general tonic.
CASE : 3 : IS SUPER BOWL ADVERTISING SUPER EFFECTIVE ?
About 140 million Americans and 700 million total global viewers tune in to Super Bowl Sunday, making the event one of the largest occasions for home entertainment. Advertising time during the Super Bowl is limited and priced at a premium. The fight for the prime spots starts months in advance of the actual airtime. In 1993, the cost for a 30 – second time slot was a high $850,000, but by 1997 the cost had shot to $1.2 million for the same short time frame. In 1998, a 30-second spot during the Super Bowl cost $1.3 million. In 2000, a 30-second spot during the Super bowl cost companies a record average of $2.2 million. Dot.com companies that have since failed or are struggling to keep their heads above water purchased forty percent of the Super Bowl ad slots in 2000. For the 2001 Super Bowl XXXVI, the average rate for an advertising spot was approximately 2.1 million.
In 2002, during Super Bowl XXXVI, Fox Network offered 60 commercial spots for a total of 30 minutes of advertising time. The average selling price for each 30-second spot was just under $2 million, at $ 1.9 million each. Companies who paid for commercial time during Super Bowl XXXVI included Anheuser- Busch, who purchased ten 30 – second spots, Pepsi Co, who featured one 90-second commercial starring Britney Spears, E-trade, M & M/Mars, AT & T Wireless, Levi Strauss, Yahoo, Visa and fast food chains Quizno’s Taco Bell, and Subway are among others.
Although Fox did end up selling all of the available ad spots, the network did not sell the final ad until the Thursday before the game. There are several reasons for the selling delay and for the reduced rates in 2002. First, marketers were facing the “worst advertising recession in recent memory.” This caused companies to carefully monitor how they spent their advertising budgets and many decided that the money could be better applied elsewhere. Many companies chose to advertise during other prime time events that were more affordable. The average rate for a 30-second spot during the early evening news in 2002 was $45,900. Even events such as the Golden Globes (estimated price $45,000 per 30-second spot), the Grammies (estimated price $57,000 per 30-second spot), and the Academy Awards (estimated price $1.6 million per 30-second spot) offer companies ad time at lower rates. However, these events do not draw as many viewers as the Super Bowl. Secondly, the NFL, for the first time, sponsored a pre-game show on the Friday night before the Super Bowl. Some companies, such as AOL Time Warner, Phillip Morris, Miller Brewing Co., and Motorola chose to avoid paying “television’s highest commercial prices” and bought ad time for lower rates during the pre-game show. A final reason for lower rates and less marketer interest in Super Bowl ad time was competition from the 2002 Olympic Winter Games. The games began just five days after the Super Bowl and offered 17 days of events during which advertisers could buy commercial time. The average selling rate for a 30-second prime time spot during the Olympics was only $600,000, a bargain compared to the Super Bowl.
Is Super Bowl advertising worth the cost? For many advertisers who bought time slots in previous games the answer was a resounding no. Nissan, Porsche, Fila and MCI passed on the chance to advertise during the game. According to marketing consultant Jack Trout, the increasing rates made buying Super Bowl ad time difficult to justify. Nissan marketing Chief Brad Bradshaw stated that although the company had intended to advertise during the game, it came to the conclusion that the resources could be better used to sell its vehicles in other ways.
In addition to the cost factor, many question what effect advertising actually has on the audience. The purpose of an advertisement is to increase customer awareness for a particular brand. For Super Bowl ads, however, the brand name often becomes secondary to the commercial itself in terms of viewer attention. Super Bowl ads have become events in and of themselves, with each firm trying to put out the next earth-shattering commercial that will stir talk about the commercial itself. Ever since Apple computer’s classic “1984” ad, firms have been trying to top previous years’ ads. Ad agencies and clients often seem to shoot for ads that are extraordinary for the sake or creativity, rather than their intended purpose, with many attention-getting promotions not translating into product purchases. It is questionable whether brand name is retained, and so despite having an incredible commercial, many advertisers’ ad dollars possibly goes into just providing new fodder for water cooler conversation for the week instead of forming a lasting brand image in the minds of consumers. Without new research into the effectiveness of Super Bowl advertising and its effect on consumers, many advertisers may be better off avoiding buying Super Bowl ad time and abandoning the world’s biggest television audience.
Some advertisers like Purina Cat Chow have taken a slightly different approach by purchasing airtime on the show directly following the Super Bowl. They obtained airtime at one-sixth of the cost during the game and they believe that they retain approximately 40 percent of the audience. Which advertiser got the biggest bang for the bucks: M & M/Mars that advertised during Super Bowl 2002, or Purina Cat Chow that advertised after the game? Without systematic marketing research aimed at measuring Super Bowl advertising effectiveness, questions such as these beg answers. It remains to be established that Super Bowl advertising is super effective?
1. What kind of research design would you recommend for determining the effectiveness of M & M/Mars advertising during the Super Bowl?
2. If the research design involves a survey of households, which survey method would you recommend and why?
3. What kind of measures and scales will you employ in your survey?
4. Can the observation method be used to determine the effectiveness of M & M/Mars advertising during the Super Bowl? If so, which observation method would you recommend and why?
5. Which syndicated services discussed in the book can provide useful information?
CASE NO : 4 : NIKE SPRINTS AHEAD OF THE COMPETITION,
YET HAS A LONG WAY TO RUN
Nike, Inc.(www.nike.com), located in Beaverton, Oregon, is the number one U.S. athletic footwear company and one of the most recognized American brands among foreign consumers. This high degree of recognition is one of the main reasons Nike has been so successful. For the 2001 fiscal year ended May 31, 2001, the company continued to soar, with sales of over $9.5 billion.
Perhaps such success could be attributed to its concept – based advertising campaigns. The company uses a process that is often called “image transfer”. Nike ads traditionally did not specifically place a product – or mention the brand name. A mood or atmosphere was created and then the brand is associated with that mood. “We don’t set out to make ads. The ultimate goal is to make a connection,” states Dan Weiden, executive of one of Nike’s ad agencies. One ad featured the Beatles and clips of Nike athletes, Michael Jordan and John McEnroe, juxtaposed with pictures of regular folks also engaged in sports. It was used to infer that real athletes prefer Nike and that perhaps if the general audience buys the brand they will play better too. Nike’s unpredictable image-based ads have ranged from shocking, such as its portrayal of real blood and guts in a “Search and Destroy” campaign usesd during the 1996 Olympic games, to humorous, such as the first ad used to launch Michael Jordan’s Jordan brand wear. The latter advertising made the tongue – in – cheek suggestion that Jordan himself had a hand in production by slipping away from a Bulls’ game at half time to run over to his company and then return in time for the game’s second half.
In 1998, Nike shifted to a new phase in its marketing strategy. Nike emphasized more of its product innovation skills than the jockey, edgy attitude that it displayed in previous years. “We recognize that our ads need to tell consumers that we’re about product innovation and not just athletes and exposure. We need to prove to consumers that we’re not just slapping a swoosh (the company trademark) on stuff to make a buck,” said Chris Zimmerman, director of Nike’s U.S. advertising. With the launch of the “I can” campaign, Nike showed less of the celebrity athletes that previously adorned its marketing output and showed more product usage than in the previous “Just Do It” campaign. Competitors Reebok and Adidas recently featured more product-focused ads and were met with a great deal of success. Despite this rearranged focus, Nike did not back away from innovative marketing.
Nike continues to excel in the advertising arena. Nike was named one of 2001’s best in advertising by Time magazine for its ad featuring expert dribblers doing trick moves. Time is quoted as saying the ad conveyed a message that “Sport is music. Sport is dance. Sport is art.” Nike states that this ad was their most popular ad in 20 years. Another popular ad from 2001 was known as the “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” ad. This particular ad featured professional athletes from varying sports singing one line of the song. “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” in their native language.
As the company looks ahead to 2010, at the heart of Nike’s future strategy is the international arena, which could prove to be the most difficult element for Nike to undertake. There seemed to be a pretty strong recognition that by 2010, Nike would be larger outside of the U.S. than inside. As of 2003, international sales comprised one-third of Nike’s business. Nike would like to expand into the soccer and international sports arena, but to do so, it would have to refocus its marketing and distribution in order to re-establish itself as an authentic, technically superior sports shoe.
In February 2001, Nike unveiled its latest technological revolution, the Nike Shox, to United Kingdom consumers. This shoe was in development for 16 years, and Nike hoped it would revolutionize the sports shoe market in much the same way that NikeAir did when it was launched in the UK in the 1980s. One reporter in London states that his pair of Nike Shox makes him feel like he is “walking on cloud nine with a spring in (his) step.” The shoes are reported to provide support, comfort, shock absorbency, and style all at the same time. The Nike Shox line of athletic shoes is shaping up to be very popular in both the U.S. and the U.K.
Most recently, Nike bought out many of its worldwide distribution centers in order to achieve greater control of its operations. In the future, Nike would like to build up its presence in the key markets of China, Germany, Mexico, and Japan. Nike will focus its advertising on sports, and will feature sports that are of a particular interest in specific regions. Nike realizes that while it is ahead of competition, it still has a long, long way to run.
1. Should Nike switch from a focus on celebrities to a focus on its products in its advertising? Discuss the role of marketing research in helping Nike management make this decision. What kind of research should be undertaken.
2. How would you describe the buying behavior of consumers with respect to athletic footwear?
3. What is the management decision problem facing Nike as it attempts to retain its leadership position?
4. Define the marketing research problem facing Nike, given the management decision problem you have identified.
5. Develop two suitable research questions and formulate two hypotheses for each.
6. How can the Internet be used to help Nike in conducting marketing research, and in marketing its products?