In this project, you will demonstrate your mastery of the following competencies:
- Apply elements of the marketing mix to inform business decisions that support organizational objectives
- Determine appropriate marketing and communication distribution channels
- Explain how marketing decisions are made to target the consumer
Chocolate Bliss started as a small, family-owned store in Seattle, Washington in 1976. While once a boutique chocolatier selling handmade “secret family recipe” chocolate bonbons, the company today has a wider variety of product offerings including boxed chocolate candies, chocolate baking products, and carob (chocolate alternative) candies and health bars. Chocolate Bliss products are sold online and in their stores to consumers and to other businesses, specifically grocery stores, throughout the Northwest.
The company has maintained its “secret family recipe” brand even as it has expanded its product offerings, and today enjoys strong brand awareness in the states where it is sold.
The company’s primary competitors are:
- Ghirardelli Chocolate Company
- Chocolate Bliss’s higher-price range baking products, sold to grocery stores, compete directly with Ghirardelli.
- Chocolate Bliss also competes with Ghirardelli for its boxed chocolate candies sold in their stores and online to consumers, and sold to grocery stores.
- Chocolate Bliss’s mid-price range baking products, sold to grocery stores, compete directly with Nestlé.
- Rise Bar
- Chocolate Bliss competes with Rise Bar for its carob (chocolate alternative) products sold in their stores and online to consumers, and sold to grocery stores.
Chocolate Bliss is financially healthy and has plans to expand into the midwestern United States. This expansion will include the launch of a new product.
You have been with the company for a few years and have been selected to be on the team that will develop a marketing plan for the new product launch. The executives at Chocolate Bliss will use the marketing plan to make decisions about how to best use the marketing budget to ensure a successful product launch, so you need to have sound research and reasoning to support your work that will contribute to developing a marketing plan. You also realize that the marketing plan is not just about a successful product launch; it is about building the Chocolate Bliss brand and positioning the company strongly against its competitors, especially when it comes to price point.
- Product Selection: Begin by selecting which product you want to be the basis of your entire project. Specifically, choose one of the following products:
- Gourmet truffles with fruit, herb, and flower extract infusions
- Semisweet chocolate baking chips
- “Healthy” carob (chocolate substitute) bars
Then, based on your product selection, complete the components below, which will contribute to the development of a marketing plan. You will use the Marketing Plan Strategy Template in the What to Submit section to help structure your marketing plan submission.
- Persona (Target Market): Research the target market (potential buyers) for your chosen product to develop a persona. Specifically, address the following:
- Conduct target market research to identify key demographic and psychographic characteristics.
- Develop one persona that represents users of your chosen product. Use the Module Two Milestone Worksheet in your Soomo webtext to create your persona.
- Draft this portion of the project as part of the Module Two milestone, and after you receive feedback from your instructor, revise your persona as needed for inclusion in your project submission.
- Promotion: Recommend marketing communication channels for your chosen product. Specifically, address the following:
- Recommend two marketing communication channels for your chosen product. Briefly describe each and explain why they are appropriate based on your persona.
- Draft this portion of the project as part of the Module Four milestone, and after you receive feedback from your instructor, revise your marketing communication channel selections as needed for inclusion in your project submission.
- Price: Consider how pricing for your chosen product should be set. Specifically, address the following:
- Explain how one of the following is used to determine the approach to pricing for any offering.
- Company profitability
- Competitor pricing
- Target market price sensitivity
- Identify which one of the four basic pricing strategies you feel is most appropriate for your chosen product and persona from the Module Two milestone. Describe the general advantages and drawbacks of that pricing strategy.
- Draft this portion of the project as part of the Module Four milestone, and after you receive feedback from your instructor, revise your pricing strategy selection as needed for inclusion in your project submission.
- Place (Distribution Channels): Consider how decisions on distribution channels should be made. Specifically, address the following:
- Describe how one recent change in the marketplace (e.g., purchasing habits or social, economic, and political events) has affected distribution of products.
- Recommend one potential distribution channel for your chosen product and explain why it is appropriate, given your persona.
- Draft this portion of the project as part of the Module Five milestone, and after you receive feedback from your instructor, revise your distribution channel selection as needed for inclusion in your project submission.
- Product: Identify considerations for the ways in which your chosen product should be marketed. Specifically, address the following:
- Explain, in one to two paragraphs, how your chosen product should be marketed in relation to meeting the needs and wants of your persona (e.g., the features and benefits of your chosen product that directly address your persona’s needs and wants).
- Consider how a product you regularly purchase is marketed in terms of consumer needs and wants. What is the marketing message, and what other methods are used to convey the benefits of the product? Use this as a guide to describe how you would suggest marketing your chosen product to your persona.
- Describe, in one to two paragraphs, how bringing this product to the marketplace can help support and build the company’s brand.
- Describe the Chocolate Bliss brand based on the scenario. Explain how offering your chosen product is in alignment with the brand, and how bringing the product to the marketplace will help the company increase awareness of its brand.
- Evaluation: Identify how you would evaluate the effectiveness of the marketing plan. Keep in mind that you need to collect data on the target market and the competition.
- Identify two specific quantitative data-collection tools you should use and explain, in two to three paragraphs, how they can help you evaluate the marketing plan. Quantitative data comes in the form of numbers.
- Identify two specific qualitative data-collection tools you should use and explain, in two to three paragraphs, how they can help you evaluate the marketing plan. Qualitative data comes in the form of words and sentences.