A business firm has to take a variety of marketing decisions. These decisions actually appear from the complex communication with a large number of people carrying out various responsibilities in the marketing institutions. The marketing executives are sincerely involved in the process of planning and execution. Marketing plan focuses on the company's strategy in the coming days. It not only focuses the company's overall tactics but also keep an eye on the competitors business. Marketing planning helps out in avoiding future doubts, achieving the objects, helps in synchronizing among all the departments and offers the customers complete satisfaction. Marketing planning compels management to reflect on the future in an organized way. It also helps in review the performance, take advantage of on the strength, reduce the weakness and threats and open up to the new opportunities.
Marketing plan focuses on describing the marketing efforts and advertising to be taken in the coming years. It establishes some set of product specific and market specific activities for achieving specific organizational goals with a definite period. A suitable marketing plan needs to specify customer needs and find ways to fulfill them effectively by keeping an adequate profit level. It specifically includes current situation of the market, action programs, sales strategies and budgets to be set by the organization for near future (Hollensen, 2015). All these things need a proper understanding of market structure and competitor analysis to identify the strength and weakness of one company over other.
Proper understanding of marketing structure and landscape assists marketers to develop and enact marketing plan as well as marketing strategies. According to Hollensen (2015), the market structure provides the number of firms within a specific market, which produces identical products. On the other hand, Hollensen opined that the more the number of firms within a particular market, the more an organization would face competition in its business. Therefore, by evaluating the number of firms, an organization can better prepare its marketing plan through making competitive marketing strategies to compete with those firms. On the other hand, the market structure also provides the ideas of firm's behavior. According to King & Chicken (2015), an organization can understand the interaction between the buyers and sellers within a market and the specific demand of customers. King & Chicken (2015) suggested that firm's behavior also give an overview of the supply of the products by several firms. Therefore, the organization can make a plan of product quantity to be produced in the market over a period (King & Chicken ,2015).
Along with the supply of products in the market, the market structure also provides an overview regarding the nature of products exists in the market. According to Hawkes (2013), an organization can identify the strength and weakness of the products supplied by other firms in the market by looking at those product's nature (Hawkes, 2013). On the other hand, Hawkes opined that identification of strength and weakness of other firm’s products assists an organization to improve its product specification in next marketing plan. In this way, the market structure can assist an organization to create an effective market plan for gaining a competitive advantage over the competitors. Apart from that, the market structure also provides information regarding the price level of the products provided by other firms in the market. Therefore, an organization can set their own competitive pricing in their marketing plan. Apart from that, the market structure also provides information regarding the degree of monopoly power in a specific market. Monopoly power is defined by the degree of power held by a firm to set the price of products. Thus, market entry in such market is extremely difficult. Marketing practice and plan in such situation need to be changed in such situation. Therefore, knowledge of market structure is extremely helpful in preparing an effective marketing plan.
To run a business properly, a company needs to do a proper analysis. The company needs to the forecast of the profitability, decide the proper combination to use, assign the work order to different employees and much more. The company does a SWOT analysis, which finds out the strengths, weakness. It also identifies the possible opportunity and threat the business might face from the peripheral factors. Marketing competitor analysis is also done in relation to the competitors. There are two ways to identify the potential future customers. By looking from the customer's point of view or look at from the company point of view. Apart from SWOT analysis, PEST (Political, Economical, Social and Technological) analysis is also done to get an overview of the competitors reaction when there is a change in the company (Gupta, 2013). Before going for the marketing competitor analysis, the company has to ask the right question. Most of the questions answer about whom, what, how and more. Without these important questions, a company cannot do proper analysis (Shabanova et al., 2015).
Competitor array is another technique that can be used to analyze the competitor market analysis. This simple tool follows few steps to determine the competitor analysis. The step includes
Defining the industry: It reflects on the industry, which the company and the competitor are working. The future scopes those are available to offer new products and services.
Finding out the competitors: The Company need to find out the major and genuine competitor that can match the companies level.
Find out the customers: Customers should be properly segmented according to the product line. It is important to understand the level of expectations of the customers.
Key factors for success: It is necessary to find out the factors to become successful and rank those factors by weighing them.
The industry of hotel is an important sector in the tourism and hospitality industry. The growth in the particular sector has been identified as a major influence in the development of the tourism sector (Leonidou et al., 2013). The evolution of marketing in the hotel industry is similar to other industries. The industry is becoming a mature market globally whereas the competition is also increasing day by day. The competition makes it difficult to win more customers. Therefore marketing segmentation, SWOT analysis, Pestle and more can be done to identify the right customers and have an overview of the competitors (Ayub et al., 2013).
To discuss briefly, The Westin Sydney Hotel has been taken into consideration. The Starwood Hotels and Resort own the Westin Sydney Hotel. The hotel is located in Sydney. It is one of the best five-star hotels in Sydney, Australia. This luxurious hotel is surrounded by the world's best designer shopping, nightlife, authentic restaurant, theatres and much more (Year,2013).
Infrastructure and facilities: Westin Sydney Hotel is one of the well-designed hotels in its class. The hotel offers globalised service to the customers. Apart from the regular customer offerings, it tenders meetings, events and more. The hotel joins in Westin difference with a variety of innovative facilities. Which includes the welcome sensory upon the arrival of the guests, Unwind, a ceremony that promotes to socialize to fight loneliness during the time of drinks or food. Breathe is a totally smoke-free zone which offers fresh air. The hotel rooms are well designed with comfortable bed and bathrooms. The hotel also offers kids club, which is the best place for the kids to enjoy.
Market position: Westin Sydney Hotel is backed by the Starwood hotels. The Starwood hotels have a strong brand image all over the world. It has a vibrant positioning in the market that helps in receiving more guests (McDONALD, 2016).
Technology: Westin group of hotel uses the technologies, which not only produce versatile, multi-functional inside but also it entertains travelers from around the globe. The new technology allows guests an essential concierge and amusement experience.
Narrowly focused: Westin Sydney Hotel is not capable of competing on the smaller scale in the Australia market. The quality, knowledge and skills do not match with the lower requirements. As a result, it does not meet the requirements of the people, who like to experience everything affordably. An Economic slowdown can be another reason for the downfall of the guests. Whatever might be the reason the Westin never compromises on its quality.
As per the recent trends of research extensive growth in the tourism industry is quite vibrant. The increased desire in the tourism sector is the perfect opportunity for any hotel to discover to its best.
Westin offers a large number of games which are very innovative form the other hotel in Australia. Guests, especially children’s loves to spend time in the hotel because of this innovative amusement activity.
Westin hotel can always focus on gaining advantage from the budding markets, especially with the higher (Business) class and the middle range market. The hotel can also expand its services in event management.
The Economic downturn is the major threat for the Westin Sydney Hotel. Researcher imitates that the reduction has given the opportunity to organizations and common people to agree to the critical cost measure at a large. The extended recession can be recognised as an another problem which has generated the need of renegotiating over the tourism and the buying habits of the customers.
Nevertheless, entry of the low cost domestic competitors often quoted by the researcher as the primary threat is not much of concern for the luxurious Westin Sydney Hotel. Westin is a brand in itself which has a worldwide presence and hence does not act by the other such treats. The national treatment towards the domestic entrants can be counted as a threat of the Westin.
After the 9/11 attack, terrorism activity has become a major threat to the hotel industry. Specially, in the hotels with large infrastructure. Additional concern has arisen with regular terror attacks with Australia being one of the major targets.
Source (Dobbs, 2014)
New entrants: The hotel industry is strongly prejudiced by the trends of tourism. The industry is capital intensive, and upfront investment is required for a large scale entrance. Dependency on the tourism sector decreases when it comes to the chain of hotels. Regulations in terms of real estate and buying overseas need to be taken into consideration and as a result it is restraining in some countries. There can be financial complexities in the purchasing and manage the properties. In general, the likelihood of the new entrants is reasonable (Dobbs, 2014).
Threat of substitution: According to Porter, substitute products can reduce the costs or provide better quality with an value sometimes. In the hotel industry is threatened by the domestic recession. A hotel can always compete on a low cost basis in the niche market. There no such major threat of substitute product to a hotels product and services.
Supply power: Property owners, architects, marketing companies are the major suppliers of the industry. However, sometimes real estate companies are much smaller than the hotel operators. The hotel industry is labor concentrated. The hotel industry is highly influenced by the quality of the service.
Buyer power: Due to the high dependency on the complicated systems and technology, the growing importance of the mobile communication channels in the industry may exercise strong supplier power. Brand recognition and innovation helps to attract the customers.
Rivalry: Apart from the existing companies, there are a huge number of self-governing players are present in the industry. Many large companies have diversified them elves acquiring shops, restaurants, casinos and more. A recent trend among the major hotel chains is the lifestyle hotels. These hotels try to meet the exact requirement of the travelers. It also tries to meet the social responsibility and affordability (Molina et al., 2015).
The research has shown that the marketing plays a vital role in the hotel industry. Based on the research findings, it can be concluded that the hotel industry plays a critical part in the outlet of any hotel or as a whole. The Hotel proprietor and the managers should give high attention to the marketing. When marketing decision should be taken, the investment in the marketing should be well synchronized in a way that other features of the hotel industry is also taken into consideration. The hotel industry should make sure that the correct message should pass across the customers with the campaigns as it is the bridge between the guests and the hotels. Any hotel should take up the most effective and efficient marketing strategies that suit the business.
Ayub, A., Adeel, R., Muhammad, S. A., & Hanan, I. (2013). A conceptual framework on evaluating SWOT analysis as the mediator in strategic marketing planning through marketing intelligence. European Journal of Business and Social Sciences, 2(1), 91-98.
Dobbs, M. (2014). Guidelines for applying Porter's five forces framework: a set of industry analysis templates.Competitiveness Review,24(1), 32-45.
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Shabanova, L. B., Ismagilova, G. N., Salimov, L. N., & Akhmadeev, M. G. (2015). PEST-Analysis and SWOT-Analysis as the Most Important Tools to Strengthen the Competitive Advantages of Commercial Enterprises.Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 6(3), 705.
Tsitsiloni, M., Grigoroudis, E., & Zopounidis, C. (2013). Service quality evaluation in the tourism industry: A SWOT analysis approach. InOptimization Theory, Decision Making, and Operations Research Applications (pp. 249-266). Springer New York.
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