Marketing Mix of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc -
December 6th, 2010
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (formerly branded as Wal-Mart, branded as Walmart since 2008) (NYSE: WMT) is an American public corporation that runs a chain of large discount department stores and a chain of warehouse stores. In 2010 it was the world's largest public corporation by revenue, according to the Forbes Global 2000 for that year. The company was founded by Sam Walton in 1962, incorporated on October 31, 1969, and publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange in 1972. Wal-Mart, headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas, is the largest majority private employer and the largest grocery retailer in the United States. In 2009, it generated 51% of its US$258 billion sales in the U.S. from grocery business. It also owns and operates the Sam's Club retail warehouses in North America.
Wal-Mart has 8500 stores in 15 countries, with 55 different names. The company operates under its own name in the United States, including the 50 states. It also operates under its own name in Puerto Rico. Wal-Mart operates in Mexico as Walmex, in the United Kingdom as Asda ("Asda Wal-Mart" in some branches), in Japan as Seiyu, and in India as Best Price. It has wholly owned operations in Argentina, Brazil, and Canada. Wal-Mart's investments outside North America have had mixed results: its operations in the United Kingdom, South America and China are highly successful, while it was forced to pull out of Germany and South Korea when ventures there were unsuccessful.
* Place (distribution)
The term "marketing mix" became popularized after Neil H. Borden published his 1964 article, The Concept of the Marketing Mix. Borden began using the term in his teaching in the late 1940's after James Culliton had described the marketing manager as a "mixer of ingredients". The ingredients in Borden's marketing mix included product planning, pricing, branding, distribution channels, personal selling, advertising, promotions, packaging, display, servicing, physical handling, and fact finding and analysis. E. Jerome McCarthy later grouped these ingredients into the four categories that today are known as the 4 P's of marketing, depicted below:
The Marketing Mix
The Marketing Mix
These four P's are the parameters that the marketing manager can control, subject to the internal and external constraints of the marketing environment. The goal is to make decisions that center the four P's on the customers in the target market in order to create perceived value and generate a positive response.
The term "product" refers to tangible, physical products as well as services. Here are some examples of the product decisions to be made:
* Brand name
* Repairs and Support
* Accessories and services
Some examples of pricing decisions to be made include:
* Pricing strategy (skim, penetration, etc.)
* Suggested retail price
* Volume discounts and wholesale pricing
* Cash and early payment discounts
* Seasonal pricing
* Price flexibility
* Price discrimination
Distribution (Place) Decisions
Distribution is about getting the products to the customer. Some examples of distribution decisions include:
* Distribution channels
* Market coverage (inclusive, selective, or exclusive distribution)
* Specific channel members
* Inventory management
* Distribution centers
* Order processing
* Reverse logistics
In the context of the marketing mix, promotion represents the various aspects of marketing communication, that is, the communication of information about the product with the goal of generating a positive customer response. Marketing communication decisions include:
* Promotional strategy (push, pull, etc.)
* Personal selling & sales force
* Sales promotions
* Public relations & publicity
* Marketing communications budget
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