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Social Media in a Business Context

Introduction

In the recent era of globalisation, the organisations try to restructure their marketing tactics in order to improve the promotional activities and launching the products in the market after targeting the audiences and identifying suitable tools of raising market communication (Mothersbaugh and Hawkins, 2016). Digital media marketing strategic planning is the way of advertisement through digital channels such as search engines, websites development and social media as well as the email marketing, and mobile application development, which are beneficial for the organisations to manage their activities and improve the market communication sustainably in near future. The study provides a scope to analyse the digital media marketing strategy and develop suitable digital media marketing tactics for the brand Lidl in order to fulfil the marketing objectives. This study is beneficial for analysing different marketing communication tools, as well as the social media platforms, where the brand representative can engage with the organisations for further promotional activities and retaining the consumers in long run. Hence, the digital media marketing tactics are reviewed and proposing suitable digital media marketing tactics to the organisation is also possible where Lidl can develop their strategic planning to promote their organisational products and services in the market of the UK and strengthen their customer’s base in long run.

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Organisational background and issues in digital marketing

Lidl is a German international discounted supermarket chain operating through 10000 stores across the Europe and United States. The company is efficient to expand their business across 28 countries and total numbers of employees in the recent year is more than 315000 (Lidl, 2020a). The organisation is also successful to stabilise their financial position by managing their growth and business activities across the Europe and USA. The company mainly provides quality products including food, baby products, baked goods and other meal and poultry (Lidl, 2020c). The vision of the company is to enhance the lives of the customers, by providing the quality products at the market leading values and ensure that the customer’s satisfaction is at the heart of everything. The organisation focuses on delivering high quality values to the customers by providing quality products at affordable price and it is the main strategy to promote the organisation and increase brand visibility. In the recent digitalisation era, all the multinational corporations try to improve their promotional activities and invest in the market planning for establishing the business and securing sustainable future growth of the company. In this regard Lidl also focuses on promotional activities for managing the brand image and retaining more customers in long run. the major impacts of digital media strategy are such as enhancing the brand operations, promoting the products, attracting more audiences in the market as well as maximising the brand profitability and sales volume through market communication,. Hence, the digital marketing strategic planning is good for Lidl to enhance the market communication and ensure high customer retention in long run by ensuring trust and loyalty among the consumers (Lidl, 2020b).

 Brand logo

However, in such a competitive global retail market, the brand faces high competitive threat and the threat of substitute products, for which it is challenging for Lidl to establish the brand promotional activities successfully. Lack of financial investment is one of the major reason, as it requires adequate capital investment in developing the marketing planning, mainly the digital marketing planning. The marketing strategies and tools are expensive where the firm must invest the capital for strategising their business. On the other hand, the organisation tries to expand their business further across the Europe and USA which also needs adequate capital investment, it is challenging for the firm Lidl to strengthen their financial position in the recent years due to pandemic era which is major issue for the firm. There is decrease in customers sending in the recent years due to the issue of COVID 19 and it further deteriorates the sales volume and profitability of the firm. This is also another major risk factor for which the firm may face challenge in managing the capital and financial investment for developing the marketing planning for further expansion of the brand. In addition to this, lack of information and unskilled workforce are also the major issues for the brand for which the suitable marketing strategic planning cannot be built (Zhu and Gao, 2019). The organisation may face difficulties to train the workers at the workplace and lead them successfully with developed skilled and creativity. The leader is responsible to train the workforce and mitigate the issue of unskilled workforce so that the digital media marketing strategic planning can be developed further and it would be controlled efficiently by the organisational representative. The other issues are such as lack of internal management and non-cooperation which also hamper the smooth implementation of the marketing tactics at the organisational workplace. In order to sustain in the retail industry, the brand must focus on the investing in the marketing tactics and promote their products and services in long run (Kurnianto et al., 2019). The organisational activities in the digital media platform must be enhanced over the period of time to increase brand visibility and retain the customers for long run.

Digital marketing strategy

Digital media marketing strategic planning must be developed efficiently by reviewing the organisational internal position, strengths and financial capability so that it would be possible for the firm to invest successfully and manage the marketing media activities in long run (Kingsnorth, 2019). Lidl in this regard must focus on the digital media marketing strategic planning so that it is possible to enhance their performance in the market as well as improve the brand visibility. For promotional activities, the brand needs to develop digital media marketing strategic planning through utilising the communication tolls and social media which provide a scope to Lidl to promote the products and enhance the market communication (Johansson and Kask, 2017). It further helps to build trust and loyalty among the consumers in the market and it further provides a scope to the brand to sustain in the retail industry and gain high competitive advantage.

Target audience

Through the STP analysis it is possible to analyse the segment of the customers as well as target the audiences where the purchase intension is high. The organisation Lidl can attract the audiences by segmenting and targeting, so that they can attract the right customers where the intension of making purchase decision for the products and services of Lidl is high. In this regard, as per the STP analysis, the firm first segments the market according to different factors such as age, race, ethnicity, gender and other economic and social determinants to identify their needs and preferences (Cantaragiu, 2019). After segmenting the customers, it is possible to target the right customers in the market where the company can retain them for the quality products, provided by Lidl.

 STP analysis  STP analysis  STP analysis

As per the analysis of segmentation and targeting, the organisation can segment the market on the basis of geographic, demographic, behavioural and psychographic, in order to understand the customers and identify the potential buyers in the market. The factors under the geographic segmentation are density and area, and in this regard the company targets the customers across the European market and USA as well as the organisation also targets both the rural and urban areas for strengthening their customer’s base. Under the behavioural segmentation, occasion and attitude are mandatory and in this regard, Lidl targets the customers for regular purchase for the home necessities as well as the buyers whose attitude is positive. Psychographic segmentation is also necessary where life style and personality are considered and in this regard the target customers as per the life style are traditional and contended confirmers and the determined customers (Tomasevic and Spasojevic, 2018). On the other hand, the demographic segmentation is one of the major factors under which age; gender, occupation, education and income class are considered to determine the potential customers for the products and services of Lidl. In this regard, all the age group from teenagers and old aged group are targeted and Lidl also targets both the male and female member for their quality products, mainly the high middle income class are targeted where the social status includes the professionals, skilled workforce and students, hence, the market segmentation and targeting are essential for Lidl to develop the marketing tactics and retain the consumers successfully.

Customer Journey

Customer journey making is important to be analysed for developing the digital marketing strategic planning. As per the theory of customer journey, there are several steps through which the company can retain them and strengthen the consumer base of the company in long run (Perreault, 2018). The steps of customer’s journey are such as raising customer awareness in the market. Increasing the interest among the buyers, influencing the purchase intension of the customers and retaining the customers further is possible to develop strong consumer base for running the business strategically (Maxim, 2020). Raising the customers awareness is mandatory and in this regard, the company must focus on promoting the brand and sharing all the information about the brand values, products category, diversity of the products, pricing, offers and other sustainable strategy of the firm, so that the customers can be concerned about the products available in the organisation. Raising the interest of the customers is also the responsibility of the firm where Lidl must focus on influencing the purchasing behaviour of the customers by promoting the products and increasing the variability of the products in the market so that the buyers can make effective purchase decision.

 STP analysis

During purchasing decision making behaviour, the customers also behave rationally, they try to identify suitable products and services as per their needs and preferences and in this context, in order to match the consumer expectation, the firm Lidl needs to conduct market research and acknowledge actual aspirations and needs of the customers so that they can develop the products accordingly (Chocholáč, 2017). As per the model, during the pre purchase situation, engagement, education, research, evaluation and justification are manufactory to influence the purchase decision. After that, during the post purchase decision, adoption, retention of the customers, expansion and advocacy are mandatory for Lidl to manage the customers and retain the old consumers as well for long run. Satisfying the customers helps to retain the buyers as well as cross sell is mandatory to expand the brand and maximise trust and loyalty among the consumers in the market.

Online Value Proposition (OVP)

Online Value Proposition is essential for the digital marketing tactics where the brand value can be developed through the digital media marketing tactics and it further helps the customers to raise concern among them and identify the suitable and sustainable products for them, according to their needs and preferences (Shaikh, Karjaluoto and Häkkinen, 2018).

Online Value Proposition

In this regard, the audiences use social media and digital media for gathering the information and latest updates about the products ranges, organisations and other information related to the industry. The goal of the company Lidl is to engage the customers and improve the OVP for long run (Kasemsap, 2018). The content marketing strategy through using the social media platform would be one of the effective tactics for Lidl to expand their business and create good OVP for expanding the business successfully. Hence, social media strategy is beneficial for Lidl to create good content and promote the organisational information and data in the market so that the customer’s awareness can be raised and it would be possible for the brand to engage with the buyers across the target European market and the markets across the USA.

SMART Digital Marketing Objectives

Digital media marketing strategic planning is necessary for Lidl to develop further tactics to promote their firm by utilising the social media platform. In this regard the objectives of the digital marketing strategies in Lidl are such as,

  • To deliver outstanding customer satisfaction
  • To strengthen the customer base within 12 months
  • To ensure market leading quality and value by constantly innovating and optimising the efficient process, driven by the organisational people and technology
  • To work with business partners across the international markets with sustainable relationship contributing in the local communities
  • To achieve long term business growth by 24 months through creativity and innovation as well as developing the people

These are the major marketing objectives of the firm where Lidl aims at sustaining in the global retail industry and lead the individuals sustainably towards achieving the future organisational growth.

 SMART objectives of Lidl  SMART objectives of Lidl

Digital Marketing Campaign

Theme

Theme

The theme of the digital media marketing for Lidl is promotion of the quality products at affordable price. The purpose of the digital media marketing of Lidl is to strengthen the customer’s base and promote the organisational products to increase their sales volume and profitability.

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Digital and social media communication tools

The social media is the best tool for enhancing the market communication. The Facebook post designed above is fruitful for Lidl to manage their operations and promote the organisational products and services successfully. Through the Facebook posts, Lidl is able to design the content and share all the necessary information about the organisation. The posts include the information such as the brand values, diverse products available in the brand, the excellence services for the customers as well as the pricing and offers at the firm. The information is important to retain the audiences in the retail industry and influence their purchase decision making behaviour (Schmid et al., 2018). The Facebook social media campaign is designed efficiently where the brand representative can contact with different social communities across the target region, European countries and USA in order to promote their products. The clear pictures of the quality of the products and the presence of diverse products are also there in the online campaign, which are also fruitful for the organisation to manage their campaign and attract more audiences across the region.

Optimising the campaign for acquisition, conversion and retention

For optimising the social media campaign, the organisational representative must handle the Facebook age through posting the latest updates and invite more friends and social communities across the countries. The activities such as customer’s query handling and managing the customer’s relationship through the FaceBook page and the social media campaign are also fruitful for the organisation Lidl to retain the customers in long run. The conversion rate can also be improved through such activities of online customers handling and sharing all the recent and valid information of the brand with the social communities, which in turn helps to develop trust and loyalty among the customers (Huang et al., 2019). Lidl also must focus on managing the brand image through the online campaign where it is possible for the brand to post the latest videos with clear and concise content, pictures and share information to raise awareness of the customers about the quality of the products at its best offer price.

Monitoring and evaluation

Monitoring and evaluation of the marketing strategy for Lidl is necessary, where the brand representative must handle the social media campaign and engage the social communities successfully. Resolving the query of the clients during the campaign, enhancing communication and improving cooperation with the customers are also important to engage the buyers and influence their purchase decision making behaviour (Tench, 2016). Moreover, for evaluating the marketing strategy through social media campaign, Lidl can identify the customers seeing the post and reacting to the post to convince them and covert them to the customers of the brand and hence continuous monitoring, communication with the consumers and engaging them with cooperation and sharing information are essential for Lidl to implement the social media marketing tactics and fulfil the objectives.

Conclusion

Lidl is able to fulfil the marketing objectives by investing adequate capital in the marketing planning and utilising the organisational technology and skilled workforce and in this regard, the social media campaign through Facebook would be best tactics for Lidl to engage with the social communities and retain them for long run so that the brand vision can be achieve further through sustainable brand expansion.

Reference list

  • Cantaragiu, R., 2019. Corporate social entrepreneurship initiatives against food waste–The case of Lidl in Romania. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Business Excellence (Vol. 13, No. 1, pp. 505-514). Sciendo.
  • Chocholáč, J., 2017. A Comparative Analysis of Direct Marketing Strategies Used by Retail Chains in the Pardubice Region. In Innovation Management, Entrepreneurship and Sustainability (IMES 2017) (pp. 93-102). Vysoká škola ekonomická v Praze.
  • Huang, J., Duan, Z., Kwok, J., Binns, S., Vera, L.E., Kim, Y., Szczypka, G. and Emery, S.L., 2019. Vaping versus JUULing: how the extraordinary growth and marketing of JUUL transformed the US retail e-cigarette market. Tobacco control, 28(2), pp.146-151.
  • Johansson, T. and Kask, J., 2017. Configurations of business strategy and marketing channels for e-commerce and traditional retail formats: A Qualitative Comparison Analysis (QCA) in sporting goods retailing. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 34, pp.326-333.
  • Kasemsap, K., 2018. The roles of corporate marketing strategies and brand management in the global retail industry. In Digital Marketing and Consumer Engagement: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications (pp. 294-325). IGI Global.
  • Kingsnorth, S., 2019. Digital marketing strategy: an integrated approach to online marketing. London: Kogan Page Publishers.
  • Kurnianto, A.M., Syah, T.Y.R., Pusaka, S. and Ramdhani, D., 2019. Marketing Strategy on the Project Planning of Retail Business for Garage Shop. International Journal of Multicultural and Multireligious Understanding, 6(1), pp.217-228.
  • Lidl, 2020a. About us. [online] Available at: https://www.lidl.com/about-us [Accessed on 17 September 2020].
  • Lidl, 2020b. Principles and values. [online] Available at: https://www.lidl.com/about-us#principles-and-values [Accessed on 17 September 2020].
  • Lidl, 2020c. Products. [online] Available at: https://www.lidl.com/products?category=all&sort=productAtoZ [Accessed on 17 September 2020].
  • Maxim, A., 2020. Review of marketing strategies used by electricity suppliers in the household retail markets. New Trends in Sustainable Business and Consumption 2020, pp.380-387.
  • Mothersbaugh, D.L. and Hawkins, D.I., 2016. Consumer behavior: Building marketing strategy. London: McGraw-Hill Education.
  • Perreault, W.D., 2018. Essentials of marketing. New York: Mc Graw Hill.
  • Schmid, S., Dauth, T., Kotulla, T. and Orban, F., 2018. Aldi and Lidl: from Germany to the rest of the world. In Internationalization of Business (pp. 81-98). Springer, Cham.
  • Shaikh, A.A., Karjaluoto, H. and Häkkinen, J., 2018. Understanding moderating effects in increasing share-of-wallet and word-of-mouth: A case study of Lidl grocery retailer. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 44, pp.45-53.
  • Tench, R., 2016. The Corporate Social Responsibility in Lidl’s Communication Campaigns in Croatia and the UK. The Qualitative Report, 21(2), pp.351-376.
  • Tomasevic, N. and Spasojevic, M., 2018. LIDL'S MODERN BUSINESS OPERATIONS IN THE DOMESTIC AND INTERNATIONAL MARKETS. Economic and Social Development: Book of Proceedings, pp.346-353.
  • Zhu, G. and Gao, X., 2019. Precision retail marketing strategy based on digital marketing model. Science Journal of Business and Management, 7(1), pp.33-37.

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