POSITIONING IMPERIAL LEATHER AS THE BEST SELLING          LUXURY SOAP BRAND IN GHANA                  A PROPOSAL TO       ...
Table of Contents  1 Executive Summary……………………………………………………..3  2 Market Analysis Survey………………………………………………...4    2.1 Facto...
1. Executive Summary      The toilet soap industry remained profitable despite the turbulentGhanaian macroeconomic environ...
2. Market Analysis SurveySoaps are a personal-care product and many customers develop deeppsychological bonds with their s...
2.2 The Challenge    In the mid-nineties Imperial leather was the best known brand ofpremium range personal care products,...
3. Strategies and Implementation   3.1 Everyday Luxury  The way forward for Imperial Leather is to go back to its core bra...
3.1.2 Gift Set Package : Product and Promotion     To gain popularity for all its products and encourage first time users ...
3.2 Benefits of the Proposed SolutionPZ Cussons will gain the competitive edge over its competitors through increaseduser ...
4. CostsThe three pronged approach in addition to improving the brands’ image, visibilityand sales will also increase the ...
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Positioning Imperial leather as the Best Selling LuxurySoap

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Marketing strategies for market dominance and improved visibility of the Imperial leather brand on the Ghanaian market.
Did this as part of the Graduate Trainee recruitment process at PZ Cussons Ghana.

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Positioning Imperial leather as the Best Selling LuxurySoap

  1. 1. POSITIONING IMPERIAL LEATHER AS THE BEST SELLING LUXURY SOAP BRAND IN GHANA A PROPOSAL TO HR DIRECTOR PRESENTED BY ASHER WILSON 1
  2. 2. Table of Contents 1 Executive Summary……………………………………………………..3 2 Market Analysis Survey………………………………………………...4 2.1 Factors Affecting Buying Behavior………………………………....4 2.2 The Challenge ……………………………………………………….5 3 Strategies and Implementation……………………………………......6 3.1 Everyday Luxury………………………………………………………6 3.1.1 Social Media Marketing ………………………………………6 3.1.2 Gift Set Package: Product and Promotion……………………....7 3.1.3 New Toilet Soap Varieties…………………………………….7 3.2 Benefits of Proposed Solution……………………………………….8 4 Costs………………………………………………………………………9 2
  3. 3. 1. Executive Summary The toilet soap industry remained profitable despite the turbulentGhanaian macroeconomic environment precipitated by the global recessionof 2008. This resilience to market pressures is buoyed by increased marketdemand for a product which is regarded as part of our everyday lives. Thestabilization of the Ghanaian economy due to sound macro-economicpolicies coupled with the recent production of oil in commercial quantitieswill see the development of a burgeoning middle-class society that willappeal for luxury personal care products.PZ Cussons stands in good stead to capitalize on this market developmentwith its Imperial Leather brand of luxury soap. However as it stands today,a combination of unfocussed marketing campaign, amorphous brand imageand low brand visibility has slowly caused Imperial Leather to loseconnection with consumers who cannot justify its high price.In order to halt its dwindling fortunes and reposition the brand to increaseits market share a three pronged approach is proposed. It involvesventuring into social media marketing, introduction of a gift set packageand the production of new varieties of its luxury toilet soap. These innovative recommendations will enable PZ Cussons to stay ahead ofthe competition through increased brand visibility, value addition andproduct differentiation. PZ Cussons will then claim leading position in theluxury soap market and consequently catapult the Imperial leather brand asthe number one selling luxury soap brand in Ghana. 3
  4. 4. 2. Market Analysis SurveySoaps are a personal-care product and many customers develop deeppsychological bonds with their soap brands. The Ghanaian market issegmented by price, by scent appeal, and by brand personality with themost dominant brand name players being Lifebuoy, Lux, Geisha, Rexona,Medisoft, Premier and Imperial leather. 2.1 Factors Affecting Buying BehaviorPrice is the most important factor which affects the buying behavior ofconsumers, various price segmentations have emerged namely premium,discount and economy. Imperial leather, Lux and Nivea occupy thepremium market of soaps with increasing competition from such brands asIrish spring, Palm Olive and Dove. Growth is expected from this segment asthe middle income bracket in Ghana expands and the premium brands willbe the best to benefit.Another important factor which affects the demand of soaps is thepenetration which the products have in the market. In this regard manyconsumers complain about the low visibility on the market of ImperialLeather with some even questioning its availability. Unilever with itsnationwide distribution network is currently has the enviable position ofbeing the premium soap market penetration leader with its brand Lux.Brand personality is also increasingly becoming a major factor affectingGhanaian consumers purchasing decision. It reflects the collection ofexperiences that the public has with the brand; differentiates while creatinga lasting impression in consumers’ minds. With the burgeoning middle class,Ghanaian consumers have become more selective preferring brands theycan identify with their lifestyles. 4
  5. 5. 2.2 The Challenge In the mid-nineties Imperial leather was the best known brand ofpremium range personal care products, but was also successful in the middleand lower market segments through a mix of targeted ads and a consumerbase that had few options to choose from. But with increased competitionfrom long standing rivals Lux and aggressive marketing and product visibilityfrom new foreign imports Nivea, Irish Spring, Palm Olive and Dove, whoappeal as trendier, youthful and more vibrant brands, Imperial Leather isslowly losing its market share. Imperial Leather due to its laidback promotional strategies, listless andamorphous brand personality has lost touch with the younger generation whohaving heard about the brand has never been seduced into actuallypurchasing its products. If this situation persists, Imperial Leather may not beable to compete let alone become the best selling luxury soap brand on theGhanaian market. 5
  6. 6. 3. Strategies and Implementation 3.1 Everyday Luxury The way forward for Imperial Leather is to go back to its core brand promise of“Everyday Luxury ". The brand needs to first identify with everyday users byproviding them with choice, product differentiation, proximity and interaction.This can be achieved through three key strategies; introduction of new variants,gift set packaging and an effusive social media marketing. 3.2 .1 Social Media MarketingThe number of Ghanaians who have access to the internet is gradually increasingas almost two and a half million people now use internet in the country,representing about 10 per cent of the entire population of the country and isexpected to rise with increasing wealth of households. This trend presents greatopportunities for social marketing since social media helps brands createrelationships with online communities. If people feel you are part of theircommunity, they will support you and recommend you to their friends. It is trulyword-of-mouth marketing at its best and an inexpensive way of improving thebrands’ personality and awareness.PZ Cussons Ghana should create Imperial leather brand profile on Social Medianetworks such as Twitter and a FaceBook Fan page which will increase its brandawareness amongst the youth who presently are the primary users of socialmedia websites in Ghana. The brand qualities must then be refined, organizedand publicly presented in a clear, concise and consistent message. These socialmedia sites will then be able to pull new customers to the brand whiles providingloyal customers the opportunity to give valuable feedback. The web address of these social media profiles can be edited into existingtraditional advertisements at no cost, giving the youth that added feel offamiliarity and association when viewing Imperial Leather ads. 6
  7. 7. 3.1.2 Gift Set Package : Product and Promotion To gain popularity for all its products and encourage first time users to try itsshower gel and hand wash, PZ Cussons should package all the personal careproducts under the Imperial leather brand as a gift set. Many differentcombinations of these personal care products could be bundled together andsold at a discounted price. Ideally the gift set should be priced cheapercollectively as opposed to its contents being sold individually as it will offer anadded incentive for purchase. Not only will this strategy offer the advantage ofattracting new users to the brand, it will also help leverage the strengths of theindividual products to create a better overall customer perception of the brand. The gift set product should be backed intensively by sales promotions on socialmedia sites as well as traditional media outlets: print, television and radio.Product bouquets stands should also be placed in selected retail shops to addthat added feel of exclusivity to the brand.3.1.3 New Toilet Soap Varieties Finally PZ Cussons should introduce a new range of fragrance for its flagshipimperial leather soap. Although new products such as the Imperial leathershower gel and hand wash have been introduced on the local market, albeit withlittle promotion- Imperial leather toilet soap still remains available in only onevariety. With time even the most ardent and loyal users will easily caroused totry other brands once familiarity kicks in. PZ Cussons should reengineer the toiletsoap by introducing fragrances that appeal to different age groups whiles stillmaintaining the classic formula fragrance in order not to risk losing loyalcustomers. 7
  8. 8. 3.2 Benefits of the Proposed SolutionPZ Cussons will gain the competitive edge over its competitors through increaseduser patronage, user feedbacks and recommendation which will enable PZCussons to better adapt to the needs of its customers. The total effect of thisstrategy will be increased patronage from first time buyers, retention of loyalcustomers and increasing market share in the luxury soap market. PZ Cussons willgrow its market share as it will appear more sensitive to user preferencesinspiring greater confidence and association with the brand. This is achievedmainly through:  Innovation  Increased Visibility  Product Differentiation 8
  9. 9. 4. CostsThe three pronged approach in addition to improving the brands’ image, visibilityand sales will also increase the profit margins of PZ Cussons since it centers on alow cost high impact strategy which can be financed without necessarily hikingthe products prices. The strategies should be implemented chronologically, thefirst step requires moderate expenditure as it leverages synergies betweenalready existent products. The marketing campaign accompanying the gift setproduct will be well within the reach of PZ Cussons 5 - 6% budgetary allocation tomarketing.Social Media Marketing is an inexpensive marketing tool which might require justone administrative staff to oversee the accounts with contributions beingsourced and added from the entire PZ Cussons workforce. Creating brand profileson such social media sites as Facebook and Twitter is also free further cuttingdown costs. Increased and targeted marketing on such forums can also result inthe reduction in the costs of the marketing department as it could reduce itsexpenditure on traditional TV, print and radio advertisements.Product development is already a vital part of PZ Cussons budgetary allocationwith a whopping GHS 1.9million spent on capital expenditure in 2009. So,although, the initial investment capital needed to finance the installation of newinfrastructure for the manufacturing of new varieties of the toilet soap isexpensive, increased turnover from the implementation of the previous twomarketing strategies coupled with PZ Cussons commitment to improving brandsand processes should make this a financially viable strategy. Overall the strategies prescribed are cost effective and well within the means ofPZ Cussons Ghana Limited and if followed pragmatically will position the ImperialLeather brand as the number one selling luxury soap brand in Ghana. 9

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